stingThe Kennedy Center today revealed the five "extraordinary American artists" who will be honored at this year's December ceremony. Along with Tony Bennett, sometime-actress, always-badassTina Turner, and ballerina/teacher Suzanne Farrell (I don't care that she danced for Balanchine - if she doesn't make students pay in sweat, she's nothing to me), Robert Redford and Julie Harris will be recognized for their contributions to American culture.

Harris, who was Oscar-nominated for her first film role (in Member of the Wedding), was ultimately probably best known as Lilimae Clements on Knots Landing (despite appearing in such classics as East of Eden and Reflections in a Golden Eye). In addition to his undeniably great screen presence and abilities as a director, Redford is now also recognized as one of the major forces behind the recent explosion of independent cinema, thanks to his founding and guidance of the Sundance Institute.

Coincidentally, John Hartl at MSNBC chose today to publish his top ten Redford films. Me, I don't even need ten. No matter how much I love The Natural, or how great the dialogue is in All the President's Men, I could never pick anything other than The Sting. I was too young the first time I saw it to really remember much about the plot, but I do remember how it felt - it was the first time a movie thrilled me with its simple, exuberant joy. Until that moment, I don't think I even really understood that movies could be more than just pictures on a screen. What's your favorite Redford flick?