Chimes of Freedom: The Songs of Bob Dylan is a four-CD package of many, many artists signing Bob Dylan songs. The revenue goes to Amnesty International, hence the copy line “this album saves lives.” But my reaction when I saw this poster was that music itself can do this. Regularly, I imagine.

All great art in fact — films, plays, paintings, novels — has the power to lift people out of the doldrums and turn them on and nourish their souls to some degree. Dylan’s music alone made a huge difference to hundreds of thousands in the ’60s, I’m sure. You could list any number of albums, films, books, TV shows, documentaries.

So what movie, if any, has saved anyone’s life out there? Or at least delivered some kind of spiritual bloom effect? You were in a kind of downish, despairing place when you went into the theatre or popped in the disc, and when it was over you felt significantly different — aroused, aflame and no longer fluondering. Jim Hoberman was recently quoted saying that Jules and Jim had this effect when he was 14 or 15. Costa Gavras‘s Z had this effect upon me, to some extent. I’d never felt politically engaged by a film until I saw it in my mid teens…wow. Second most arousing: Hearts and Minds.

What movie changed LexG‘s life? Or Glenn Kenny‘s?