The Ramona and Beezus director—whose adaptation of Beverly Cleary's children's series is in theaters now—picks her favorite film versions of beloved stories.
Little Women (1994) The chemistry between the March sisters (including Winona Ryder as Jo) is so real and honest. Words just spill out of their mouths; it never seems like actors reciting lines. It feels almost voyeuristic to get a window onto this family's life.
The Princess Bride (1987) It appeals to the kid in me who half mocks the idea of fairy tales and half hopes desperately that they're true. It has sardonic wit but a kind heart.
To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) When I was younger, it was like homework, maybe because it's in black-and-white. Now I get sucked into that world; I walk in the characters' shoes and experience the story with them. Atticus Finch is so strong and selfless that he probably doesn't even know he's a hero—which is the best kind.