* I wrote this a number of years ago based on the top 100 movie list from the 1997 World Almanac. I tweaked the writing a bit but kept the same story basically intact. Each movie links to every movie's trailer or a clip from that movie. Enjoy!
It happened one night in the city lights of Casablanca. Snow White’s godfather was singin’ in the rain about the psycho in Chinatown. So, a group known as the searchers searched for this maniac and ended up killing a mockingbird instead! It was all quiet on the Western Front as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid arrived in a stagecoach on Sunset Boulevard where they spotted White’s godfather and took him out. Then off they went as midnight cowboys north by northwest to France. A wild bunch of people then mashed together at high noon to capture Butch and Sundance. Many people came, some got lost along the way like Lawrence of Arabia who helped the African queen build the bridge on the river Kwai. Well, some like it hot. And then some don’t, like Dr. Zhivago who decided to run cross country with Forrest Gump in Fargo. Others decided to go other routes like Mr. Smith who went to Washington to work on Jimmy Carter’s Star Wars program with Dr. Strangelove. However, many people’s minds were on connecting Casablanca and France, or as some would call it, the "French Connection."
We all climbed wuthering heights over giant rocky mountain tops while listening to the sounds of music that echoed off the highest peaks. We’d find our place in the sun where we became skilled deer hunters, and every Friday we’d sacrifice lambs and eventually this became known as the silence of the lambs. We ate so many wild foods that our favorite saying before each meal was, “Hey, guess who’s coming to dinner?” After a while we ran low on supplies and the rain we began receiving was like one thousand raging bulls colliding all at once. Then all of a sudden, we heard what sounded like a jazz singer not far off. We roamed the countryside until we saw that on the waterfront there was an apartment-shaped building, and in the rear window was this jazz musician. Not knowing what else to do with supplies low, we gave a knock at the door and waited. A very lengthy and pale faced butler answered. “Right this way; he’s been expecting you.”
The butler showed us into a living room with what appeared to be antique Victorian-style couches. We sat down and then another man, a woman and a young boy walked into the room. The man had a big bushy mustache and a huge vertebrate that seemed much too big for his body. “Hello; I’m Citizen Kane.” He spoke in this very deep and bellowy tone that seemed to establish him as a man of importance. “This is my fair lady here, our son Shane and behind you is our goldfish, Jaws.”
“So where you boys headed to?” Kane asked, looking out at the rain.
“Well, we set up a network of guys here to find Butch and Sundance for the murder of Snow White’s godfather,” I said, speaking on behalf of the group.
“Sounds like a mutiny on the bounty if ya ask me,” Kane replied, his attention still at the rain. “And uh, why do you say that?” I asked.
“Well you boys ever hear of the treasure of the Sierra Madre?”
“No, what is it?”
He now had all our attention and we temporarily forgot about Butch and Sundance. Kane turned around to face us and somehow was able to look at us all in the eyes simultaneously as he said this.
“It’s an old cursed treasure that’s buried deep in the Sierra Madre. Right now I think the raiders are after its lost ark.”
One of our members asked, “The what?”
Kane quickly replied, “Haven’t you boys read your Bibles? Read your Bible; it’s all in there. If that ark is opened, all who shall open one’s eyes shall perish from here to eternity and the raiders, boys, they go against all government authority just to find it – a real gold rush it is.”
Finally I thought I’d bring the story back on target, “What’s that have to do with Butch and Sundance?”
“Well, boy it’s the same with these guys. (Again with the boy I thought; Why does he keep calling us that? We’re grown men; who is this guy?) Ya see, they’re after something now too; you just have to find it. In fact, I bet it’s so close you can smell it. Anyway, there’s a little dive I like to go to sometimes called American Graffiti a few miles up the road. It’ll tell you how to get back to town, to modern times.” And that’s all he would tell us.
So, we paid our thank you’s and after a few hours on the road we arrived at the bar. We sat down and a waiter named Frankenstein took our order. We tried asking questions, but it didn’t seem like he’d answer anytime soon. I did notice, out of the corner of my eye, a very familiar woman was eyeing me while reading a Pulp Fiction magazine. She was a woman I’ve seen somewhere before and she was around my age. I seemed to recognize her too. It’s not, wait a minute, it is! Annie, Annie Hall, that’s it. I went on over, we reminisced of our days as lovers and American double agents and then talked business. She told me that she’s last seen Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid in Paris.
“Americans in Paris, huh?” I inside joked with Annie. But she was down to business.
“Listen, I want to go with you. I’ll be your double indemnity.”
“Okay, well are you sure?” I asked.
“Positive,” she said with a look I knew she was on board.
So, our team with the addition of Annie arrived in the next town of Le Mans where we took a cab all the way to Paris. The taxi driver was awfully nice for agreeing to the long trip. However, we did have to listen to his Philadelphia story all the way, him being from there and all, and how his wife is bringing up a baby. Part of the way he even sang “Yankee Doodle Dandy,” which we joined in at parts too.
He let us out at a plaza in Paris known as the A Mécanique Orange. We then boarded a streetcar which people call Desire and headed for a nearby kennel to purchase a dog. We all enjoyed the ride and all agreed the streetcar was an easy rider.
We arrived at the kennel and bought our dog that we would use to sniff out Butch and Sundance. We ended up purchasing a pug and named it Fantasia, since it was a fantastic Asian dog. With our dog and our people in tow, we headed for the police station. I tried explaining the situation in French and they all looked at me as though I were an extra-terrestrial. So Annie spoke instead and they were much more helpful. It seems Butch and Sundance were put on France’s Most Wanted List and Shindler’s List weeks ago and are somewhere on the outskirts of Paris.
With this new information, we hit the road again smelling Paris’ wonderful Tootsie Rolls and horrible pollution. Ah, but Tootsie Rolls; where would Paris be without them? For Tootsie Rolls are their number one money maker. We kept rolling along until we reached a sign that read “Outskirts of Paris."
A little further from that sign we noticed an abandoned warehouse with Butch and Sundance’s stagecoach parked outside. I immediately jumped on our microphone and went ahead with basic procedure.
“All right, Butch, Sundance; we know you’re in there. Come out with your feet up, or your hands, your hands. We got you like duck soup. So, come out and there will be no trouble.” Butch and Sundance surprisingly followed the orders and came out with their hands up, but not with their feet up.
Butch: “Please don’t harm us; we’re goodfellas!” Sundance: “Yeah; we’re just rebels without a cause.” Unknown Voice: “So it seems the raiders have come to seek their ark, eh?” Me: Kane?! Kane came walking out of the shadow of the warehouse, just as upright and as confident as the day we met him.
“Ha, ha! It was me that led you here fool! Annie may have known you in the past, but she works for me now. It was all a convenient set up. Looks like one flew over the cuckoo’s nest huh boy? Ha ha! Everybody out! And with Kane’s command I saw the world’s most evil villains (some who I thought Annie and I put away years ago). I saw the likes of Bonnie and Clyde, the Maltese Falcon, the Wizard of Oz, and Ben-Hur. By this time, Butch and Sundance stood up and were pointing their .38 caliber pistols right at us, along with the firearms of the aforementioned super villains. I looked around for Annie, but couldn’t find her. What good was she anyway? I had sweate dripping down my shirt in buckets, and I didn’t have an idea of what to do.
"Hi just got here; new planes are amazing! We miss anything?" asked unknown voices. As if timing couldn’t be better, superheroes Lawrence of Arabia, Dr. Zhivago, Dr. Strangelove and Mr. Smith all arrived to fight for the good guys. Both sides had a platoon of powerful people waiting to kill the other side. "Well, as long as we’re here, what are we waiting for?" I asked. The fight began and soon there was this Apocalypse Now atmosphere that General Patton himself couldn’t control. It was so futuristic with forces of good and evil that you would think it would belong in a space odyssey in 2001 or something. In the midst of the chaos, I saw Annie return from hiding and begin to fight Kane! She must have had real feelings for me and got some sense knocked into her! The skirmish lasted around four hours; we came out with fewer deaths and injuries and managed to handcuff Butch and Sundance. The only downside of the battle was that Kane escaped and we weren’t sure where he went off to.
We took Butch and Sundance back to police headquarters in Paris. It turned out they had Tootsie Rolls stashed up in that abandoned warehouse. Like Kane said, “I bet it’s so close, you can smell it.”
It was all about eve though, or the eve of their Independence Day when we received metals from France’s king, King Kong and named the campaign “The Grapes of Wrath” since France is known for wine and it was a hard journey. In our speech, we said they’d be better off dancing with wolves than messing with us again.
“Wow, what a real west side story, huh?” she said.
“Haha, yea, so they ever find another godfather for White?” Annie asked.
“Yeah, actually, me in fact.”
“Wow, really? Well, good for you. Hey, you know what they say: when you’re a graduate, it’s the best years of your life; but right now, it truly is a wonderful life,” I said. “So ya wanna see a movie?” I asked Annie while taking her by the hand.
“Sure what one?” she said looking up at me.
“Heard Amadeus is supposed to be pretty good.”
“Well, okay.” And that was that. The story was swept away and gone with the wind.