100 Movies

After trying my hand at the 100 Songs, I'm going to try 100 Movies. They're not in any particular order. I may or may not have much to say about them. What you need to know is that it's my list and I like these movies. I'll try to link up to them.

1) City of Angels. This is my go-to favorite movie because it's one of the few movies romantic movies that I can think of that doesn't end happily-ever-after in the traditional sense. And it has a great soundtrack.


2) Phenomenon. It's such a likeable movie. And I've been thinking about it lately because of the theme song, which made my 100 Songs list in position 2.

3) When Harry Met Sally. My go-to New Year's Eve movie. I've loved this movie since I first saw it in the theater. It spoke to me. And it's a modern classic!

4) Mary Poppins. When I was a kid, after Mum died, I hoped our housekeeper would be like Mary. But not one of them was, although they were very very nice ladies. And I always knew Bert's accent was dreadful but I don't care.

5) Fandango. A college fraternity road trip movie. I watched this a lot when the movie first came out. I always wished I had some college friends to go on an epic adventure like that.

6) Running Scared. A classic family favorite. We watched this movie so many times and repeated the funny lines over and over and over. I think it was overlooked because the buddy cop movie had been done so many times in the mid-80s, with Beverly Hills Cop and Lethal Weapon. But I love both Billy Crystal and Gregory Hines, may he rest in peace.

7) Pulp Fiction. Once I got used to the language and the violence--and realized it was over-the-top and cartoonish, I really, really loved how the story lines wove together. The friend I was with had a very difficult time keeping track of what was going on so it helped me sort what was going on to explain it. I love this movie.

8) Tootsie. A classic from the 80s, I actually just made reference to this in class on Friday. The situations are so outrageous and hilarious. And the acting is sublime.

9) Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. I think this is the original bromance movie. And a classic western. I can't even remember the first time I saw this movie but it made a real mark on me.

10) Close Encounters of the Third Kind. The mashed potatoes scene has always stuck with me. His obsession almost scared me. This is the film that kicked off a family fascination with UFOs and we shared movies and books after this. I think I'm the only non-believer in the bunch.

11) The Wizard of Oz. I was so afraid of Miss Gulch that I was unable to watch the black & white sequence. And the flying monkeys freaked me out. But I love Glenda and the brilliance of the colors. Oh, how I love this movie.

12) The Maltese Falcon. This film kicked off a noir period. All I watched were gumshoes and film noir movies. And I read a lot of noir, too. I adored Humphrey Bogart.

13) One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. We read the play in my creative writing class in high school, then saw the movie. I thought it was amazing.

14) Singin' In The Rain. Classic songs and iconic dancing. This is the story from silent films to "talkies" and all the drama that went with it. One of my go-to favorite musicals.

15) Philadelphia. Tom Hanks was outstanding in this film and deserved the Oscar. Denzel Washington was also fantastic in his portrayal of someone grappling with fear and ignorance of AIDS and homosexuality. There are several scenes that haunt me.

16) Ordinary People. I don't have the words to express my love of this movie. The disintegration of this family moves me. The performances are riveting, especially Mary Tyler Moore, who I had never seen in anything serious. It inspired me to read the novel and then to teach the novel with my first high school Senior English classes. Every time I see it different parts affect me deeply.

17) The Holiday. A movie about a Christmas vacation. Two women on opposite sides of the Atlantic swap homes for a 2-week vacation. I am compelled to watch it every time it's on TV.

18) Glory. I remember seeing this in the movie theaters and crying at the end. Now I show it to my American Studies classes, as it's part of our curriculum. And I pick up something new each year.

19) The Blues Brothers. Another family classic. So much so that I bought it for my nephew as part of his film library of classic movies. This mission from God is hilarious.

20) Planes, Trains & Automobiles. A classic holiday film. It's just too funny. I miss John Candy. And John Hughes.

21) The Sound Of Music. A favorite! I remember being so afraid of the Nazis, even when I didn't know what a Nazi was. And I love how the nuns have a sense of humor.

22) It's Complicated. This was one I saw at the theater and couldn't wait to own on DVD. I just love this story of a middle-age woman who's powerful and in control, even if it is complicated.

23) The Shawshank Redemption. A favorite adaptation of Stephen King's short story. Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins are such good actors.

24) Sleepless In Seattle. Such a great chick-flick. I really love this movie. I have seen it about a hundred times. It's my go-to happy movie.

25) Moonstruck. This was one of the first DVDs I bought because I just LOVE Cher in it. I love the family dynamics and the transformation of the nature of love.





26) The Fisher King. It is a redemption story that is compelling and wonderfully acted. Jeff Bridges and Robin Williams are fantastic.

27) The Princess Bride. An epic tale of the power of love and friendship. So many memorable lines. "You rush a miracle man, you get rotten miracles."

28) Four Weddings And A Funeral. The story of Charlie and his friends--and the four weddings and funeral they attend. There is so much warm humor and love in this film.

29) Out of Sight. Love the interplay between George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez. I think this is the only JLo movie I like. She was understated and not playing herself.

30) Get Shorty. John Travolta is so smooth in this film. It's a convoluted story of a loan shark turning into a film producer. Such fun.

31) Ruthless People. A dark comedy that really cracked me up. Bette Midler and Danny Divito are so darn funny in this.

32) Nine to Five. Oh, how I love this film. I could relate to all the women and love how they exact their revenge. Dolly Parton, Jane Fonda and Lilly Tomlin have great chemistry.

33) Fantasia. I remember seeing this in the theater with my dad. I loved the dancing hippos. The music and the stories were so imaginative.

34) Toy Story. It's what I always wondered about: what did my toys do when I wasn't around? Woody and Buzz are both great leaders and it's fun to watch their adventures. I admit Toy Story 3 made me cry.

35) Thelma & Louise. Susan Sarandon is smart, strong and sexy. Geena Davis is young and impressionable. And Brad Pitt caught my eye.

36) Ocean's Eleven. I love a heist movie. This is so much fun. I love that Brad Pitt eats in every scene he's in. Actually, all the Ocean's movies are great fun, although the 3rd one wasn't as much ensemble, which is what I really enjoy. They're smooth and smart.




37) Silence of the Lambs. A book that chilled me with a film adaptation that did justice to the film. Jodie Foster is remarkable.

38) The Professional. A hitman takes in an orphan after her family is killed. It's an unlikely buddy film but it works.

39) Beautiful Girls. A cult hit that really stuck with me. Natalie Portman is so sweet. Friends gather for their high school reunion; they are all at cross-roads in their lives. An under-rated film.

40) North by Northwest. An Alfred Hitchcock film. Middle-aged Madison Avenue advertising executive Roger O. Thornhill is mistaken for a government agent by a gang of spies. He gets involved in a series of misadventures and is pursued across the States by both the spies and the government whilst being helped by a beautiful blonde.

41) An Affair To Remember. Classic love story. Star-crossed lovers meet on a cruise but promise to reunite on the Empire State Building. However, an unfortunate accident keeps her from the reunion, and he fears that she has married or does not love him anymore. Will he discover the truth behind her absence?

42) This Is Spinal Tap. A fantastic mockumentary. I actually had to explain that this wasn't a true story to one of my friends. I thought it was hilarious.


43) The Bourne Identity. A fantastic, slick, original thriller. I really liked the whole series with Matt Damon.

44) Crash. Several characters' stories interweave during two days in Los Angeles; a black LAPD detective estranged from his mother, his criminal younger brother and gang associate, the white District Attorney and his irritated and pampered wife, a racist white police officer who disgusts his more idealistic younger partner, an African American Hollywood director and his wife who must deal with the officer, a Persian-immigrant father who is wary of others, and a Hispanic locksmith and his young daughter. I hope to teach Sociology again so I can use this film.

45) Love, Actually. This is such a feel-good movie. It's set during the holidays but isn't a holiday movie. I love how the stories weave together.

46) Schindler's List. The film begins in 1939 with the German-initiated relocation of Polish Jews from surrounding areas to the KrakΓ³w Ghetto shortly after the beginning of World War II. Meanwhile, Oskar Schindler (Liam Neeson), an ethnic German businessman from Moravia, arrives in the city in hopes of making his fortune as a war profiteer.

47) The Color Purple. When I saw this movie I was heartbroken for Celie. But she triumphs and her story is remarkable. Worth every award.

48) Miracle on 34th Street. I believe, I believe. And, ok, I admit that I like the remake, too.

49) Something's Gotta Give. Diane Keaton is delightful.

50) Caddyshack. Danny Noonan works at the upscale Bushwood Country Club as he tries to raise enough money to go to college since his parents cannot afford it and his grades were unremarkable in high school. It's a classic.

51) The Breakfast Club. The plot follows five students at fictional Shermer High School in the fictitious Chicago suburb of Shermer, Illinois as they report for Saturday detention on March 24, 1984. While not complete strangers, the five teenagers are each from a different clique or social group.

52) Reign Over Me. A man who lost his family in the September 11 attack on New York City runs into his old college roommate. Rekindling the friendship is the one thing that appears able to help the man recover from his grief.

53) National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. A classic holiday family movie--where anything that can go wrong does go wrong.

54) Jeremiah Johnson. A Mexican War veteran becomes a mountain man who wishes to live the life of a hermit and becomes the unwilling object of a long vendetta by Indians when he proves to be the match of their warriors in one-to-one combat on the early frontier.

55) The American President. A widowed U.S. president and a lobbyist fall in love. It's all aboveboard, but "politics is perception" and sparks fly anyway.

56) Say Anything. Lloyd Dobbler and Diane Court are exploring a relationship at the end of their senior year of high school. Can their relationship work?

57) Point Break. An action film starring Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves. Such a fun film--men in wetsuits.

58) Taps. It's the story of military students who are trying to keep their school open by taking it over. Intense.

59) Absence of Malice. Sally Fields plays a novice reporter at a Miami daily who becomes a pawn in the investigation of a liquor distributor (Paul Newman) suspected of being involved in a mob murder.

60) The Muppet Movie. In 1979, I was obsessed with this film.

61) Ghost. But not for the dramatic/fantasy parts. For the Whoopi Goldberg parts. She's hilarious.

62) Star Wars. The original. It's imaginative, epic and classic.

63) Raiders Of The Lost Ark. Set in 1936, Indiana Jones is an archeologist on a mission. All of these films are great (although the ending of the most recent was a bit hokey).

64) Mad Max. Before Mel Gibson went berserk, this was a classic 1979 film. A dystopian action film. Very cool.

65) The Sixth Sense. I remember when I figured this movie out--the big plot twist. It truly was like a light shone over my head. The acting is understated and very, very good.

66) The Crying Game. An unlikely kind of friendship develops between Fergus, an Irish Republican Army volunteer, and Jody, a kidnapped British soldier lured into an IRA trap by Jude, another IRA member. When the hostage-taking ends up going horribly wrong, Fergus escapes and heads to London, where he seeks out Jody's lover, a hairdresser named Dil. Fergus adopts the name "Jimmy" and gets a job as a day laborer. He also starts seeing Dil, who knows nothing about Fergus' IRA background. But there are some things about Dil that Fergus doesn't know, either...

67) A Few Good Men. A great courtroom drama: One man is dead. Two men are accused of his murder. The entire Marines Corps is on trial. And 'A Few Good Men' are about to ignite the most explosive episode in US military history.

68) The Usual Suspects. Who is Keyser SΓΆze? This is one of my favorite movies because the storytelling is so good. Yeah, it's violent, but it's all part of the story. The twist is amazing.

69) Big. A small boy's dream of being grown-up is realized. Tom Hanks is spot-on.

70) Alien. Sigourney Weaver kicks ass. A sci-fi horror film this is the best of all worlds. Creepy, jumpy and just plain awesome.

71) Back To The Future. Such a classic 80s film. It was charming but it hasn't really aged well. But I still love it.

72) M*A*S*H. Transitioning from the big screen to the small screen, this is one of my favorites of all time. I learned about the Korean War because of MASH. I remember how the theme song haunted me throughout my teen years.

73) A Fish Called Wanda. Oh, great googley moogley but I laughed at the torture scene. This movie reminds me of such a specific time in my life--the friends, the atmosphere--all of it.

74) Mrs. Doubtfire. An unemployed voice actor creates a character so that he can spend time with his children.

75) Grease. Hey, it's my list! If I like hokey, I like hokey. But it always bugged me that Sandy felt pressured to change to keep Danny interested. Although, Danny's change into a jock wasn't as dramatic to me.

76) Dead Poets Society. Such a good coming of age film. It's the story of an inspiring teacher who reaches his students through poetry.

77) Teachers. Nick Nolte plays Alex Jurel, a teacher who has all but given up on the education system and his students. He decides to give it one last try, buck the system and teach. Jurel is surround by a group of teachers fighting over ditto machines, sleeping in class, and a gym teacher sleeping with students. For good measure an outpatient from a local mental hospital take a substitute job, dressing up as historical figures to teach his classes.


78) Monty Python and the Holy Grail. I don't know how to sum this up other than to say it's a parody of King Arthur's quest for the holy grail.

79) Blade Runner. Futuristic and dystopian. It's very cool and it's a classic.

80) 48 Hours. An action comedy film starring Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy as a cop and convict, respectively, who team up to catch a cop-killer. It's the first buddy-cop film I can remember.

81) Shrek. Shrek, a grouchy, mean, selfish green ogre that has always enjoyed living in peaceful solitude in his swamp, finds his life disrupted when numerous fairytale beings, including Pinocchio, the Three Little Pigs, and Donkey, are forced into the swamp by order of the obsessive, perfectionistic, fairy-tale despising Lord Farquaad. Adult humor disguised as a kids movie.

82) Animal House. Without this raunchy romp, there never could have been the classic 80s teen movies.

83) The Big Lebowski. The Dude. His Dudeness. Duder. El Dudereno. Really? Need I say more?

84) Casablanca. The story of a man torn between love and virtue.

85) The Harry Potter movies. They're all coming together because they all deserve to be on the list.

86) Revenge of The Nerds. I love this movie. Another family favorite.

87) Elf. I went to see this with my Sociology class. All of them. We had so much fun at the theater--and the audience participated in the film, singing along when appropriate. It's extra memorable.

88) Office Space. One of the movies that I always stop to watch when I catch it on. Anyone who's ever done battle with a photocopier can relate to this movie.

89) You've Got Mail. Funny how the technology has changed over the years.

90) Notting Hill. This is the first film that made me really like Julia Roberts.

91) Finding Nemo. A father-son underwater adventure about a fish and his son Nemo, a boy clown fish, who is stolen from his home in the Great Barrier Reef, Australia, and taken to a fish tank in a dentist's office in Sydney. His timid father and a blue tang fish named Dory with short-term memory loss must follow the East Australian current in order to get to Sydney and take Nemo home.

92) The Shining. A writer, Jack Torrance, takes a job as an off-season caretaker at an isolated hotel. His young son possesses psychic abilities and is able to see things from the past and future, such as the ghosts who inhabit the hotel. Soon after settling in, the family is trapped in the hotel by a snowstorm, and Jack gradually becomes influenced by a supernatural presence; he descends into madness and attempts to murder his wife and son.

93) Fargo. A dark comedy crime film from the minds of the Coen brothers. Amen!

94) Crazy Stupid Love. A great romantic comedy/drama. Poignant. I love how the stories weave together.

95) The Help. This is a great adaptation of a movie from a book. That's why it makes the list.

96) Saving Private Ryan. An amazing war film. The first twenty minutes are painful to watch but incredible.

97) Psycho. I grew up with this horror/suspense film. An original and a classic.

98) The Family Stone. Dynamics of a family holiday meal. Oh boy. Every family's comedy/drama.

99) As Good As It Gets. A romantic comedy about real people.

100) ?

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