Top 5 Jimmy Stewart Films
James – or Jimmy, however you like to refer to him – Stewart. A legendary actor and the man who started it all for me. Jimmy Stewart has been my favorite actor ever since I was little; he definitely was one of the reasons why I initially was so interested in classic films (and films in general). Here are films that are his best, where the genius shows his true talents.
The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence (1962)
One of Stewart’s more solemn roles and one that finds him a different element – a John Wayne Western. But the story and the tension between Stewart and Wayne are so good and let’s face facts, folks: it’s Jimmy Stewart in a Western. That’s the pinnacle of cool.
Not only is this movie delightfully creepy, but Stewart’s fantastic monologue also lends to the cinematographic brilliance of the film. It has one of the most impressive unbroken shots ever filmed. A lesson to young filmmakers everywhere: sometimes you have to break the rules if it serves a purpose.
Rear Window (1954)
Another creepy Stewart role (and another Hitchcock-directed film), but Stewart again shows his acting prowess with the intensity (and obsession) incorporated in his role. Also, as much as Disturbia and Shia’s performance were fun, nothing will compete with the original. Simple as that.
Elwood P. Dowd and Harvey. An eccentric pair, but one that you love. Especially Dowd, with his sweet demeanor and devotion to his sister. The first Stewart film I saw and will continue to love. He plays the ultimate nice guy who just needs a little help. Even if it’s from a Pooka.
It’s A Wonderful Life (1946)
Definitely one of his most easily quotable movies – I have to admit that I swoon when he says, “I’ll give you the moon, Mary” – and one that truly touches upon the human spirit. I’d say that there’s no better holiday movie, but I think I’d be doing the film a disservice by only categorizing it as a holiday film. It’s one of the best movies, and definitely Stewart’s finest performance.