The Library of Congress announced its selections for the 2013 National Film Registry Dec. 18, and the 25 movies range from classics like "Mary Poppins" and "The Right Stuff" to three early silents, following the Library's report that 70 percent of these have been lost forever.
This year's registry selections also include movies that launched the cinema careers of their directors -- Quentin Tarantino's "Pulp Fiction", and Mike Nichols' "Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, then husband and wife who were similarly explosively espoused.
Some of the more unusual choices are early dance films of Martha Graham, a pre-eminent figure in developing modern dance; controversial filmmaker Michael Moore's auto industry documentary "Roger & Me"; and "Forbidden Planet", a 1950s sci-fi fave based oh so loosely on Shakespeare's "The Tempest"!
Here are the 25 films added to the National Film Registry this year:
Bless Their Little Hearts (1984)
Brandy in the Wilderness (1969)
Cicero March (1966)
Daughter of Dawn (1920)
Ella Cinders (1926)
Forbidden Planet (1956)
The Hole (1962)
Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)
King of Jazz (1930)
The Lunch Date (1989)
The Magnificent Seven (1960)
Martha Graham Early Dance film (1931-44)
Mary Poppins (1964)
Men & Dust (1940)
Notes on the Port of St. Francis (1951)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
The Quiet Man (1952)
The Right Stuff (1983)
Roger & Me (1989)
A Virtuous Vamp (1919)
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf (1966)
Wild Boys of the Road (1933)
The silent films tapped for preservation are "Daughter of Dawn", featuring an all-Native-American cast of Comanches and Kiowas; "A Virtuous Vamp" starring Constance Talmadge; and a Cinderella story, "Ella Cinders".
In a related choice, "Decasia" was created from scraps of decades-old, decomposing film, culled from archives across the country, including the Library of Congress. Filmmaker Bill Morrison collected nitrate film stock "on the very brink of disappearance and distilled it into a new art form," the Library said in its announcement.
The Library's study "The Survival of American Silent Feature Films: 1912-1929", released Dec. 4, revealed that 70 percent of U.S.-made silent feature films have been lost completely, due to time and neglect, and only 14 percent exist in their original 35 mm format.
Librarian of Congress James H. Billington termed that "an alarming and irretrievable loss to our nation's cultural record."
In today's National Film Registry announcement, Billington said that movies are a "key component of American cultural history" that is endangered, "so we must protect the nation’s matchless film heritage and cinematic creativity."
Registry films, now totaling 625, "will be preserved as cinematic treasures for generations to come."