Five Favorite Films

Elisabeth Moss' Five Favorite Films

by | October 20, 2014 | Comments

Elisabeth-Moss'-Five-Favorite-Films

Elisabeth Moss, best known as Peggy Olson on AMC’s hit series Mad Men, currently stars alongside Jason Schwartzman in the new independent drama Listen Up Philip. When we recently chatted with Moss about her Five Favorite Films, she initially limited her choices to movies about relationships — a major theme in her new film — but as we spoke, we discovered another common thread throughout them. See the full list here:

 


Annie Hall (Woody Allen, 1977; 98% Tomatometer)



The first one is Annie Hall. All of these movies are movies that… I mean, I feel that most people’s favorite movies are movies that you can see over and over again. That’s just a movie that, you know, I don’t know how many times I’ve seen it and it doesn’t even matter anymore. It’s one of those movies that, every time it comes on TV, I have to sit down and watch it even if I’ve seen it before. To talk about why I love it, I mean, what do I even say? “Because I’m not a moron [laughing]? That’s why I love it?”


That’s a good reason. I like it.

OK, good, we’ll go with that. “Because I’m not a moron.”


Do you remember when you first saw it?

No I don’t. I’ve no idea when I first saw it, no idea.


But you watch it over and over again? Every time it’s on?

For sure. It’s definitely something that, yeah, in fact, just talking about it is making me want to watch it.


You mention relationships in your upcoming film. What is it about the relationship in Annie Hall that is attractive to you?

It’s such a real relationship, you know. I mean the first thing I love about Annie Hall is the humor. It’s just hilarious. It’s a really funny movie. But it’s a very real relationship story and one of my favorite moments is the montage at the end when he goes over all the great moments that he and Annie had. And it’s just that great kind of, like, even after a relationship goes south and you break up or whatever happens, I just love that, the way he looks at it and goes, “Yeah there were a lot of good moments though [laughing].” It has this really, weirdly positive ending.

When Harry Met Sally (Rob Reiner, 1989; 88% Tomatometer)



That’s a film that, for me, that’s one that, even more than Annie Hall, is like an I-know-every-word kind of movie, you know, that I just can’t get over. It’s very comforting to me. It’s one of those comfort films. And it’s also really funny. And it’s one of those movies like… All the things about these romantic comedies and relationship movies or whatever, they don’t even make them like that any more, you know? Except for independent film. Independent film sometimes does, but you don’t really see them.


Yeah, the styles change, even on television. Everything is changing. And I think what happens is sometimes we get kicked back, we revisit what we enjoyed about previous decades and we see a new variation come up again.

Yeah, yeah. Totally.

Sunset Boulevard (Billy Wilder, 1950; 98% Tomatometer)



This is a film — and this is kind of going away from this relationship theme — but this is a film that, when I was little, I loved. I mean, I’ve loved it my whole life. I don’t know what that says about me, but I loved Sunset Boulevard. I was a big old-movie fan when I was, you know, older than most people should be when they’re older-movie fans. [Gloria Swanson is] just so spectacular in that film and it sort of formed my idea of that raw, dramatic acting. And the writing… The writing in that movie is unbelievable. So many incredible one-liners. It’s one of those movies that you can watch now and you’re just, like, “Damn, that was a good line,” you know? Like, God, that was some good writing back then. The thing is that movies written that way wouldn’t fit in, really, these days. It would sound strange, like you couldn’t really do it now. But thank God we have them.

Sweet Smell of Success (Alexander Mackendrick, 1957; 98% Tomatometer)



Another movie I’m going to give you is the same thing. I mean, it’s just that the writing is unbelievable, and that’s Sweet Smell of Success. It was a movie I discovered a little bit later, like maybe in my teens. And that was another move that I was just like, “Jesus, the writing on this thing, it’s unbelievable.” The one-liners are so smart, you know? I loved movies like Sunset Boulevard and I loved the kind of Hitchcock films and all of these kind of things and then I saw Sweet Smell of Success and I was like, “Oooh, this is a little bit naughtier,” you know what I mean? There’s something a little bit darker about that movie. The performances in it are so priceless. It was a little bit more of a leap in the cinematography, I think, than maybe those of, like, Sunset Boulevard or something. The lighting, it was very harsh. They were doing things with the cinematography that I was like, “Ooh, this is naughty,” like, “You’re not supposed to do that.” You know?


So you do have a bit of a dark side.

Yes for sure, for sure. But I mean mainly it was the writing, that is what attracts me to the older black and white classics.

All About Eve (Joseph L. Mankiewicz, 1950; 100% Tomatometer)



I know I’m kind of sticking in an era. I’m sorry. I know I could probably go to cooler areas like the 1960s and 1970s and stuff.


That’s what you like, though.

Yeah, I mean those are the films I can watch over and over again that I’ve loved since I was a little girl. All About Eve probably preceded all of those movies. I definitely saw that first. That started my love affair with Bette Davis. It kind of introduced me to what an actress was. Bette Davis was my first introduction to what an actress was, like a real actress, you know? And I subsequently saw all of her movies. I was obsessed with her when I was a little girl. That ballsy, confident, beautiful but flawed woman. She’s strong, but vulnerable. I felt like the characters she played, the later ones, have all of that, and that, to me, is like, “Oh that’s acting.” Even though it’s probably a lot broader than what we do now, and it’s obviously a different style. To me, Bette Davis was like, “Oh wow, that’s an actress, I get it.”


And there’s so much truth in that movie, it’s a little scary.

Oh my God, completely, completely. And it’s a brilliant script. And again, incredible dialogue. Just full of the most iconic lines. All of these movies… rarely do we have movies these days where you can quote, like… I’m not talking about “I’ll be back” and “Show me the money,” know what I mean [laughing]? I’m talking about really intelligent, quick-witted one-liners. And these movies have, like, 30 of them in every movie.


Right; they don’t make movies like that now.

They probably couldn’t. It probably would be weird and outdated. It would be strange. I mean, you probably couldn’t anymore, but it’s ok because we can just go watch those.


True, and hope that people stop remaking everything.

Exactly, exactly.


Not sure if you realized, but four out of five of your picks here have an entertainment theme.

Oh, that’s true, I didn’t. [Laughing] I didn’t, because I’m a moron, but you’re absolutely right.


No, you’re not a moron, remember? Because you like Annie Hall.

[Laughing] Because I like Annie Hall, exactly. Thank you.


You were obviously drawn to these sorts of films when you were a little girl and now, here you are, doing so well in your career.

For sure, for sure. Yeah, I definitely was attracted to things that had an entertainment theme to them, and musicals and things about Broadway and all of that kind of thing, I definitely was attracted to.


Listen Up Philip is currently in theaters in limited release.

Tag Cloud

reviews Nat Geo Black Mirror Ellie Kemper Television Academy BET police drama richard e. Grant DGA video on demand TV renewals The CW teaser Academy Awards USA Walt Disney Pictures Winter TV Trophy Talk Disney+ Disney Plus dark Lucasfilm boxoffice book concert Epix indiana jones ABC asian-american joker Baby Yoda Superheroe comics 2019 spain Film Festival dogs Starz Cartoon Network children's TV TLC Showtime TV Land Pride Month Travel Channel singing competition fast and furious Captain marvel Box Office Calendar Freeform Apple Writers Guild of America breaking bad Polls and Games Fantasy critics dragons YouTube Red ESPN Avengers APB thriller zero dark thirty Photos 2016 medical drama A&E Spike binge PBS VICE transformers SundanceTV 21st Century Fox Sundance Now rotten YouTube ID adaptation Valentine's Day RT History Action Mary poppins christmas movies doctor who finale classics true crime Podcast A24 Super Bowl ITV anthology YouTube Premium AMC universal monsters FX documentaries Spectrum Originals period drama Video Games australia Amazon Pop aliens dramedy Chilling Adventures of Sabrina indie HBO Max satire Shondaland streaming Shudder TruTV toy story zombies DirecTV GLAAD OneApp Sony Pictures cinemax Elton John USA Network technology American Society of Cinematographers 2018 science fiction Fox Searchlight reboot screenings remakes cops El Rey CMT BBC One werewolf Dark Horse Comics Grammys comic Character Guide TV One Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt cancelled TV series chucky Pirates Anna Paquin scary movies name the review movies blaxploitation CBS Music Acorn TV Year in Review Logo serial killer twilight child's play superhero romantic comedy docudrama Britbox Marvel Studios Mindy Kaling Extras cancelled television Chernobyl SDCC biography game show FXX Holiday HBO The Purge stop motion The Arrangement hist Trivia Lionsgate politics mockumentary Nickelodeon Drama Set visit PlayStation Comedy Central composers cooking The Walking Dead Ovation Lifetime Christmas movies TCA Awards DC Universe james bond Toys Paramount Network Marvel jamie lee curtis WarnerMedia Marvel Television Sundance TV FX on Hulu Teen 99% Brie Larson IFC Apple TV+ The Witch discovery Reality Endgame E! Television Critics Association Alien CW Seed mission: impossible RT21 Marathons Comedy Cosplay History Western TCA Winter 2020 Interview comedies Apple TV Plus The Walt Disney Company Schedule Spring TV Masterpiece series romance ghosts Song of Ice and Fire golden globe awards DC Comics natural history Mystery foreign Hulu renewed TV shows elevated horror Amazon Prime cats kids what to watch Hallmark Kids & Family nfl ratings 007 71st Emmy Awards San Diego Comic-Con jurassic park Cannes all-time worst Quiz Classic Film archives Heroines MSNBC cancelled social media quibi cartoon mutant spider-man 20th Century Fox TCA facebook NBC TCM scorecard First Look theme song Red Carpet Black History Month sitcom historical drama Hear Us Out Disney Plus NYCC VOD best TIFF 24 frames japanese worst movies Awards Tour award winner Discovery Channel Tomatazos Adult Swim fresh 78th Annual Golden Globe Awards ABC Signature PaleyFest cars nature Musical golden globes TBS latino witnail TCA 2017 unscripted hispanic casting Star Trek obituary Premiere Dates Women's History Month GIFs rt archives Stephen King dc political drama Paramount anime Reality Competition halloween OWN festival Comic Book Disney streaming service tv talk WGN documentary Tumblr 45 spy thriller nbcuniversal Pixar versus BAFTA LGBT Rocky Tubi psychological thriller crime thriller cancelled TV shows parents movie Holidays green book vampires IFC Films miniseries comic books venice Amazon Studios Family films laika Tarantino Emmy Nominations CNN BET Awards Star Wars DC streaming service Film Certified Fresh Pet Sematary Infographic harry potter Rom-Com emmy awards based on movie Summer dceu crime drama Thanksgiving 4/20 cults criterion Winners rom-coms zombie Netflix Lifetime war Horror crossover MCU Election Oscars ABC Family Turner Classic Movies sports Sci-Fi President news First Reviews Food Network Peacock FOX disaster Countdown YA 72 Emmy Awards Musicals Binge Guide Amazon Prime Video Mary Poppins Returns black Universal Best and Worst Funimation See It Skip It justice league sag awards GoT Syfy directors National Geographic Ghostbusters Crunchyroll spanish language canceled TV shows The Academy Opinion BBC Watching Series HBO Go rotten movies we love Mary Tyler Moore Sneak Peek trailers Trailer toronto 2015 LGBTQ Turner italian sequels Sundance screen actors guild CBS All Access animated supernatural diversity french a nightmare on elm street festivals franchise revenge television Creative Arts Emmys south america football canceled Superheroes spinoff Christmas space comiccon halloween tv sequel spanish Mudbound talk show E3 Arrowverse Pop TV die hard stand-up comedy Awards independent MTV Crackle slashers Rocketman TNT TV strong female leads Disney free movies travel Nominations Fall TV pirates of the caribbean blockbuster batman Warner Bros. crime Columbia Pictures Comics on TV game of thrones adventure robots VH1 Netflix Christmas movies Country stoner BBC America New York Comic Con Rock 2020 hollywood Fox News 2017 Bravo Disney Channel Animation deadpool Vudu psycho SXSW Esquire Hallmark Christmas movies boxing Biopics Emmys video X-Men Martial Arts