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Catching a patriotic show indoors

June 28, 2007|Thomas Mills

IT'S a well-known fact that pets and some people cannot stand loud sounds. If you're one of the latter, then you'll certainly be skipping this year's Fourth of July fireworks displays in favor of a quieter night at home.

Relax. There's no need to feel unpatriotic about skipping the exploding rockets. Here are five films guaranteed to give you that Happy Birthday, America feeling without going anywhere near anything with a fuse.

"1776" -- If you're going to pick a movie about the birth of America, you couldn't ask for a better title. This clever musical offers a history lesson and a few nifty tunes to boot. The best part is that it portrays the creators of the Declaration of Independence with just the right amount of reverence and humor.

"Independence Day" -- Nothing ticks off an American more than being attacked by extraterrestrials, but it just keeps happening -- in film, anyway. Well, we need not worry because we've got nukes and Will Smith to kick butt and take names. Sure they'll have to rebuild Washington, New York and virtually every other city, but that's for later, right after we crush the aliens on, you guessed it, the Fourth of July.

"Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" -- Jimmy Stewart and Frank Capra and a biting, moving and hilarious film that reveals more about backroom politics than many serious films on the topic. If the kids complain that it's in black and white, just tell them the television isn't working right.

"Glory" -- Of all of the films about the American war experience, "Glory" surely packs the biggest punch in the emotional gut. This inspiring story recounts the 54th -- the first black regiment to fight for the North in the War Between the States.

"The Natural" -- Robert Redford and baseball: Does it get any more American than that? This fantasy tale about the world's greatest slugger has red, white and blue written all over it. You'll even get fireworks when Redford hits the film's finale blast.

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