I ordered The Best Old Movies for Families by Ty Burr, a film critic, a few weeks ago. He shares how he got his children interested in old classics and lays out great strategy for introducing oldies to your kids. It is a fun book to peruse. Burr gives great suggestions for starting out with young children and sections of his book dedicated to age of child, genre of movie and the people (actors and directors) who made them.
I was so inspired that I immediately ordered five old DVD's for our collection. We had been wanting to beef up our DVD selection with older classics and this gave me a great jumping off point. I was happily bemused when my children delighted at the movies. The twins being almost five, were an easier sell. I ordered a musical (Singing in the Rain), an adventure (Adventures of Robin Hood), a western (Stagecoach), a sci-fi (The Day the Earth Stood Still) and a romantic screwball comedy. The sci-fi is too scary for them yet, so we'll wait. But the other four were a big hit. The romantic comedy would have flopped I think, but it has a leopard and an adorable terrier as two of the main characters (Bringing Up Baby).
I had never seen Bringing up Baby before and I found myself laughing throughout the entire movie. It was so much fun. As for the other movies, I had seen them but didn't remember them much since I'd watched them with my mother as a kid. They were all delightful. Now my teenager tried to act like he was just too far beyond these movies, but I've noticed that he watches riveted as long as he's unaware of us noticing him.
This book has been a treasure trove of information and set us on a path that I hope to wander for a long time.