Andy Griffith Defined Family and America.

The Andy Griffith Show was as much a part of the landscape of my youth as the front yard. Sometimes I thought it was boring because nothing much happened, but if Barney and Andy were in a scene, magic.

Not just because they were beyond funny. But because the warmth was palpable. The feelings of love and respect the characters had for each other was completely believable.

I felt that love in my own home, growing up. It's not that we lived the Andy Griffith Show. It's that it felt familiar and comfortable and true. People are that gentle, kind,  honest and sweet.

And "No Time For Sergeants." Where he manages to make an outrageously Southern yokel character not just believable, but like the only sane person in the world.

Later in life, I discovered "A Face In The Crowd."

Relentless in its exposure of celebrity. A character with no redeeming qualities. Even down to his harsh laugh, which irritates and yet still takes over the room.

An indelible career. A great artist.

If I had a TV network, I'd run these two movies back-to-back, all day long. They are as American as Mark Twain. And maybe just as profound.
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