100 & 99 Of My Favorite Movies Ever
148 7.8 7.7199. Marty (1955)
A small movie that, even though it tends to hit you with it's easy point over the head like a hammer at times,
features engagingly warm & down to earth performances by Earnest Borgnine & crew.
" You don't like her. My mother don't like her. She's a dog. And I'm a fat, ugly man. Well, all I know is I had a good time last night. I'm gonna have a good time tonight. If we have enough good times together, I'm gonna get down on my knees. I'm gonna beg that girl to marry me. If we make a party on New Year's, I got a date for that party. You don't like her? That's too bad."
You tell 'em, Marty.
773 7.7 7.6198. Lady Vengeance (2005)
Part of a Vengeance Trilogy of which the more well-renowned Oldboy belongs to. IMO, of the trio, I find that Sympathy For Lady V to more strongly emphasize director Park Chan-wook's "poetic" use of visuals (a phrase you'll probably be able to understand better once you watch it) with a story that flows much smoother into it's gritty climax that, for my money, is richly laden with an equal balance of above-the-law justice & a plausible & sensible empathy for it's unique plot-device.
So while I also recommend Oldboy as a great flick that is armed with a more in-your-face type of plot twist, I still find that my sympathies tend to lean stronger towards Lady Vengeance.
742 7.5 7.6197. Enter the Dragon (1973)
forget all those stupid Chuck Norris internet memes that you see running ridiculously rampant all over the world wide web. He's a milquetoast martial arts mockery whose so-called brass balls could never hope to stand up against Bruce Lee's fists of fury.
You really want to see what badd-ass 100% kickassery looks like in it's purest form?
Exit the Texas Ranger.
Enter The Dragon.
16 8.5 7.6196. Streetwise (1984)
An emotionally wrenching ending, because it's real life & not a script. I was really taken by this film mainly because of the manner that it focuses on those who are easily forgotten in our society & then brings to the surface their raw reality & all the street-life drama & engaging emotion, all at a level that the world of escapism entertainment can never really compare to.
The Mighty Celestial's rating:
750 7.4 7.5195. Waking Life (2001)
Philosophical musings accompanied with expressionistic graphics of computer-generated "paint", overlayed on top of life-action.
And if that description is hard to understand, then let me instead say that Waking Life is definitely not a kid's film.
Or for those who watch films exclusively so that they can turn their brains off.
A unique movie-enjoying experience when approached with the right frame of mind.
2089 7.7 7.8194. Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)
7388 8.2 8.9193. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the Kin... (2003)
A movie about a famous fantasy novel series that I've never read. And even though, I felt a bit lost through out certain plot elements, there was enough in this thickly layered tale of wizards, faeries, hobbits & bug-eyed emo moppets to allow me to loosely fill in the blanks to make at least, an over-all blanketed sense out of the whole damn thing.
And even though this was a great series, for me, this series suffered from what I always thought the problem would be of trying to condense such a full & detailed storyline into three movies. The story left the alot areas for the viewer to fill in, certain ideas seem to almost come out of nowhere since there was almost no room to introduce them & there was quite a lack of hatable villians in these movies (Gollum seem to come closest in this trilogy). Now don't get me wrong, they're kick-ass looking villians & their concepts are great, but because so much is trying to be fit in the limited space of the running times, it doesn't feel to me like anyone one can really jump up & down when the good guys ultimately beat 'em.
However, all of that is still just a minor quibble. Seeing dragons & giant spiders come to life in the manner that they were always meant to, magic being blasted with the power to awe, & giant sword & sorcery war scenes with a sweeping & mythological epic quality that used to be incomprehensible for the cinema in earlier years make up for any sacrifice that was made in order to be able to fit all this stuff onto the silver screen.
Over-all, I was just really happy & satisfied that to finally see a series of the fantasy genre being adapted onto film with the respect & effort of the highest quality.
1484 7 7.7192. Traffic (2000)
Now, I've heard & read a couple of opinions & critiques of this movie that praised it for not pointing out any specific reason for the drug problem in this country, but I disagree.
When Michael Douglas' character, judge Robert Wakefield, explains that rather than continuely lecturing to their daughter not to do drugs, his wife & he were instead going to start listening to her,
I think that it hit it pretty good on point.
427 7.3 7.3191. Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995)
With the realism of the coming of age teen life themes that the film "Kids" started, Dollhouse seems to continue. This time, the plot is fitted into a "more linear" storyline, with the intent of structuring the movie in an order that makes it more of a digestable film for general audiences, despite some of its sharp edges.
This is a hard-nosed depiction of those who are quietly & easily overlooked & who tend to make up a larger percentage of the student school population that many of us don't to or even care to notice.
561 6.8 7190. WarGames (1983)
730 6.4 7189. Payback (1999)
723 8.1 8188. The Conversation (1974)
A classic suspensful thriller by Francis Ford Coppola that hardly gets any mention when discussing great films, probably b'cuz it was released the same year as The Godfather Part II, & therefore it kinda got overshadowed. The Conversation is a movie that you just can't go wrong with as it's a work by a director at the height of his prime, & stars the always dependable Mr. Gene Hackman in the central role along with the late great John Cazale, an actor who in his short film career, never starred in any movie rated less than an A+.
620 6.2 6.8187. Get Shorty (1995)
2096 7.8 8.1186. Stand by Me (1986)
373 6.4 6.9185. Starman (1984)
An alien being comes down to Earth, morphs into a human form in order to understand our species & then begins a race against time to meet with his star-faring rendevous party before the government military can get it's hands on him/it. But not before he/it can get a girl pregnant.
this movie is E.T. for adults.
Or at least, it's for those of us whose mind's are mature enough to understand that when it comes to traffic lights, red means "stop", green means "go" & yellow means "go very fast".
The Mighty Celestial's rating:
923 6.8 7.4184. Tootsie (1982)
Outside of When Harry Met Sally, this movie ranks as one that could easily represent the epitomy of the modern romantic comedy.
A good script, with each of the central actors approaching their roles with quality efforts, despite the lightness of the subject matter. This movie has the heart, laughs, chemistry & even a touch of satiric social commetary that matches the rest of the film's themes in the same way that a nice pair of high heels would match an elegant dress-gown.
Tootsie's end-result is that it satisfies in the manner which was always meant to be of the rom-com when the genre was first conceived.
The Mighty Celestial's rating:
5354 7.3 7.7183. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
As someone who had no real interest in this series or it's subject matter, it wasn't until this istallment that I finally watched a Harry Potter movie. And being that I never read any of the books, I was quite taken aback at the over-all consistancy of balance between the fantasy element of the wizarding world & that of the perosnal struggles of what goes thru a young person's mind trying to deal with things like death, authority & finding one's place in the life. Compelling drama, a storyline that both successfully continues the series & yet also manages to stand on it's own, well-placed chemistry between the characters, medevil sets that visually stun, Dementors that horrify, old tree willows that whomp & even a werewolf that looks pretty damn bad-ass.
I walked into this film an indifferentiated non-fan & ended up coming out of it a hardcore Pot-head.
1124 6.9 7.2182. Ronin (1998)
727 7.8 7.9181. The French Connection (1971)
Every once in a while, a part comes around that helps to define the career of a certain actor. Popeye Doyle's was Gene Hackman's. From here on end, I always viewed Mr. Hackman's roles as a guy with a friendly smile, though with a slight slant of sinister intent.
Officer Doyle, as portrayed in this film was a guy out to do good, but is so determined to catch the bad guy, that he is willing to beat a suspect for info or haphazardly speed dangerously down a New York city street. In the end, he'll make sure the law wins, even if he has to break a few rules (and a few skulls) along the way.
Or rampage a stolen car thru rush hour traffic in a chase scene that all car chases from here on end will be measured by.
8321 7.8 8.7180. The Matrix (1999)
Even though all the follow-ups, videos & merchandising would take the next cyber-evolutionary step in visuallly out-doing the one that started it all,
the story in this first chapter of Neo & Co. was still fresh & not yet so over-wrought with complicated ideas & all walks of philosophical influences that tended to bog down what originally started as a really cool concept in a world of monumental pixilized possibilities.
You are now entering the Matrix.
2602 7.3 7.9179. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
A martial arts film that decides that it's not goin to be one.
Many forms of physical combat like to brag of itself as being a form of violent ballet, but Crouching Tiger Hidden dragon is one that just wants to portray it martial arts as an art tool that blends into the majesty of the story's theme of honor, love & wisdom, that this film ends up laying claim to that dance-metaphor that the other fighting films wish they could be truly worthy of.
No character in this film, no matter how small, is colored in the simple black & white colors of good & evil, and all are dutied bound by a personal sense of honor. And both men & women are equally capable in either mastefully full contact engagement or scaling the walls & even the very air in gravity defying leaps that serve more to enhance the fable-like atmosphere of the story.
Intelligent, straightforward & "martially artistic", Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon is a pure fun action flick merged into a story whose simplicity is hidden behind the human depth of a group of characters who believe their respective situations to be truly epic.
3383 8 8.3178. Blade Runner (1982)
Almost a decade & a half earlier before Blade Runner, 2001: A Space Odyssey was one the first films to successfully marry the big budget sci-fi with a genre of a different theme (that of psychological thriller) so that all the high tech flashiness of science fiction acted as a contrasting backdrop to a darker side that resided underneath all the complicated buttons & wires of futuristic technology.
Then came Ridley Scott's Alien, which did the same for the darkside of sci-film, but now more in the method of the straight-up horror genre.
He followed that up with another marriage to sci-fi, but this time in the cinematic category of film noir. Now, with this story of replicant-hunter Rick Deckard, Scott depicts what lays beneath all the flashy neon lights that decorately symbolize the endless possiblities of the future, to tell a tale of the grit & grime layers of lost & forgotten cybo-souls that could only act as a foundation of those towering spires of technological brilliance that would allow the mortal men living in 'em to percieve themselves as gods.
Blade Runner is just as equally a visual stunner as the other famous sci-fi classic that Harrison Ford is known for, but now, instead of a distant galaxy far far away, it's in a distant future that more down to Earth.
The Mighty Celestial's rating:
1561 7.2 7.8177. Airplane! (1980)
Before Epic Movie, Scary Movie, Date Movie or Superhero Movie, there was this movie. The original gangsta of the "modern" take off movie.
Or to put it another way,
this is a movie about another movie but done as a spoof movie. And since I've used it nine times, here's the word "movie" just one more time, to make it an even ten.
1540 7.3 7.8176. Donnie Brasco (1997)
Al Pacino in the mob, but this time, on the opposite side of the heirarchy. A low-level aging hitman who can't get no respect. One of the few times Al gets to expand his acting muscles as opposed to just flexing 'em with a loud performance, which, over the years, has sorta become his standard.
For me, a great gangster movie isn't just about "wacking" people. It's when it shows the inner-most details of how the mob works. This one goes towards the very lowest part of the totem & shows us how the "cogs" grind thru a living in hopes of someday climbing that mafia ladder.
4681 7.3 7.5175. Sleepy Hollow (1999)
Tim Burton's has a great style to his movies, but for my money, not enough substance. Sleepy Hollow is the exception. The idea of this movie wasn't one that had any real appeal for me, but it turned out to have more in terms of story & character than I would've expected. I think Mr. Burton, though still considered avante garde, would be held in much higher regard if he could flesh out his stories as well as he did for this one.
1095 6.5 6.9174. Rocky II (1979)
While this movie couldn't match the spontaneous quality of it's predessor, back when this came out, it was still rare for a sequel to reach the level of both box-office & financial success that this one did. The romance between the Rock & Adrian flows wonderfully into it's next level as two people trying to form a unity based on each other's distinct personalities. Carl Withers is not forgetten as Apollo Creed as this installment enters deeper into the life of the champ who's titleship comes into question. And even Mickey manages to surprise us by revealing some of the heart that seemed hopelessly buried beneath his years-long thick crust of curmudgeon hide.
As a follow up to the the first film, the plot in Rocky's 2nd. crack at the worldbelt felt like an natural extension of the story that had begun in the first film & not just as a sequel out to cash in on the success of that initial effort.
1391 8.4 8.5173. North by Northwest (1959)
Cary Grant gets chased across America by villainous spies, government agents, & the most dastardly of 'em all, a crop-duster!
In the same manner that Psycho made me start taking baths in order to avoid the "someone-sneaking-up" factor that is the natural result of shower curtains,
this movie made me always choose dwellings within the city in order to avoid ever having to cross paths with any of these air-borne single engine bi-planal horrors.
1775 7.4 7.9172. Halloween (1978)
While Texas Chainsaw Massacre introduce us the idea of an unstoppable masked maniacal force intent on making all mere mortals that it comes upon into it's chopped sushi bitch, Halloween introduced us the formula of this theme before it became formulaic. And also before the formula became stupid.
Pay attention to the handling of the characters, the situations of each victum & even the simplicity of the musical score, & you'll find that even though this film requires the usual suspension of belief that is needed to swallow the outrageousness of this genre, this film does not ask that you hide your intelligence too much behind any kind of William Shatner mask.
485 6.8 7171. Curse of the Golden Flower (2006)
Some of the most breathtaking & gorgeously intricate background set designs ever in a film. So rich are the colors & exquisite details in this movie, that it requires multiple viewings just to be able to soak it all in. Once one can get passed that aspect of the film, it will become obvious that the sets are not a distraction, but an enhancement to the story. An enrichment that adds to the dialogue with an intensity that allows the ideas of what appears to be human pettiness behavior in a royal setting to be revealed as much grander in scope & concept.
And for a movie that can make someone as simple minded as myself come to a conclusion like that, that's definitely a statement to the power of it's artistry.
1528 5.8 6.4170. Paranormal Activity (2007)
Even though I find myself surprised at how much I've been consistantly entertained by the majority of those movies that have been made with the handheld-cam method of filmmaking, I thought for sure that by this point in time, we've pretty much reached the point of exhausting the genre.
Then comes along this movie & shows that in a style of cinema that should've been drained of life by now, when entering the realm of the paranormal, there can still be some signs of activity.
2543 8.3 8.7169. City of God (2002)
For me, watching this Brazillian-based film feels almost exactly like watching a documentary. In one frighteningly all-too real scene involves a young (incredibly young) kid gang member who is cornered by a much older gang leader from another troupe & then is asked to choose between getting shot in the hand or in the foot. IMO, it is a scene that holds more power, depth & context than most movies contain in their entirety. An incredibly eye-opening & moving picture that reveals the true grit of violence, hopelessness & poverty of the South American slums that lie behind tourist paradises such as Rio de Janeiro and the like.
1628 8.1 8.4168. Chinatown (1974)
Jack Nicholson's only role as a detective in a "modern" noir film that doesn't try to be anything else other than a modern take of a noir film. It is because of this, that the 1970's sensibilities that are just a natural result of being a film of this era, along with it's "twisted" twist ending, that Chinatown comes off as being a work more layered & "edgy" than a standard mystery film. Which ends up giving this movie a much more distinctual feel that surpasses the genre in which it respectfully tries to remain faithful to.
And when you think about it, aren't those the type of qualities that usually make a classic film a classic?
2347 6.4 7.2167. Knocked Up (2007)
1147 7.7 7.8166. Dirty Harry (1971)
Clint Eastwood begins his tour de force as the San Francisco cop with a 70's machismo-sized chip on his shoulder. "Dirty" Harry Callahan is an on-the-street inspector who consistently talks thru incessantly gritted teeth, enjoys pissing off his starch-collared superiors & welds big hefty handguns like they were just a natural extension of what makes him so dirty to begin with.
In other words,
he's mad as hell and he's not gonna take it anymore, punk!
927 6.6 7165. A League of Their Own (1992)
In a game mostly associated with male players, it's ironic that a film which focuses on the women's first professional entry into the sport, would be the one that, for me, truly captures the feeling which best reflects of why this sport is truly an American pasttime: that the purpose of a game is, no matter how the global scale of political events may be turbulently transpiring, we can all just escape for a little while by catching a ballgame. And hopefully, in the end, then return into the real world with our spirits a little higher & our perspectives a little bit clearer. Because, as we all know by now,
there is no crying in baseball.
2667 7.3 7.6164. Watchmen (2009)
Now, even though I'm a comicbook nerd & I own the graphic novel, I haven't read it in years & it was only about twice that I picked up the book,
so I don't remember it clearly.
Which I think was an advantage, because since I can't really recall what would be the parts that didn't make it into the film, for me, the story felt incredibly full & tight. Since the concept of the Watchmen was alot more intelligent than the time-constraints of the film allowed it to be, for me personally, the movie felt alot like the kind that Marvel were putting out when they first started to "grow up" with runs like the Claremont/Byrne era of X-Men or Frank Miller's Daredevil (before the company sold out & reverted drastically to the immature stories of the 90's).
I really enjoyed the way this movie panned out, & from what I remember in the graphic novel, I definitely think that the film's version of the ending fit in perfectly within the context of the media in which it was told.
Really good stuff that I really found myself enjoying alot more than I expected when I first walked in.
2685 7 7.2163. Chocolat (2000)
Juliette Binoche & chocolate.
Two great tastes that taste great together.
And yeah, I know I should probably get into more detail about why I think this is such a quality film,
but to be honest, whenever I think I of this movie,
I can't get the idea of a chocolat Binoche out of my mind.
2074 7.7 8.2162. Platoon (1986)
702 7.3 7.7161. M*A*S*H (1970)
I was a big fan of the TV series, & often watched it in syndication during my tweener years, when my tastes in entertainment were just beginning to experience their own particular brand of puberty. I had heard that there was a movie from which this series was based off of, but never watched it until just a few years ago. After getting so used to the TV version, it took me a bit before I started becoming comfortable with the feel of the movie, which is more raw, not as tightly focused on "preaching" the anti-war message as it's small screen counterpart. However, once I began adjusting my viewing senses to more readily absorb the movie's integrity, it's brlliance of creativity, "war-time operating-room realism" & humor, all became more apparent. It's ability to interweave these aspects with such a spontanetic balance was not only a reminder of a director's (Robert Altman) prime, but also, why this movie is considered such a classic of the genre, particularly in the realm of it's genre of dark comedy & satire.
836 6.5 6.8160. Kids (1995)
Not only did I walk into this film not really knowing anything about it but also several minutes late into, at the scene where they kept switching between the dialogues of the two boys walking down the street & of the group of girls commiserating about sex. Because of this, my initial impression was that I was watching a documentary. That is, until I caught on to the camera work & noticed that it was obviously a movie. As someone who grew in an incredibly poor nieghborhood, for me, this movie one of the "realest" depictions of "wake-up call kids" that I had seen up to this point in time.
2472 7.4 7.8159. Kick-Ass (2010)
Kick Ass decides to fight crime with no superpowers or experience,
Red Mist follows suit using dad's money & the Mistmobile,
Big Daddy shows everybody how it's done,
& Hit Girl....well, she practically steals the whole show.
A foul-mouthed fun-filled over the top action flick that's probably not for the faint-hearted.
863 7.3 7.4158. Fried Green Tomatoes (1991)
2923 7.9 8.3157. Snatch (2000)
1660 6.6 7.3156. Contact (1997)
What Close Encounters Of The 3rd. Kind did back in the 70's, this film takes to the next evolutionary step, in terms of the actual physics & concepts of an actual meeting 'tween us mere mortals & any life-forms.
For my money, Contact contains some of the best discussions of religion & atheism in any film ever made. It's depictions of the manner that things like general fear & politics can get in the way of a true quest for knowledge is both basely intelligent & comprehendibly poignant. This film's plot does a great job treading on the subject of how our society is constantly struggling between the comfort of what we already know & the confrontational truths about our species that can be revealed as result of the discovery of what is new, especially if seen thru the "eyes" of a life-form that's a lot smarter than us.
Contact is a reminder to me that when it comes to sci-fi films, I luvs me some intelligent life-forms.
132 6.8 7.2155. Nobody's Fool (1994)
This is simply one of those movies that I really enjoy that never really gets much mention anywhere. Paul Newman, Jessica Tandy, Bruce Willis, Melanie Griffin & Phillip Seymour Hoffman are a great cast of actors playing a great cast of characters in this film. And each one is a piece of a puzzle that, despite their sharp edges, all still fit in perfectly.
669 7.4 8154. A Christmas Story (1983)
Lemme tell you guys something, if Santa were to leave an official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model air rifle/BB gun under my tree this year, even at my current age, I'd still end up beating my chest & proclaiming to the whole world that it's a wonderful life.
And before anyone says anything,
lemme just say
"F#ck* my eye. I don't care."
*( ...and when I said that, it didn't come out as "fudge".)
The Mighty Celestial's rating:
4119 8.1 8.6153. Memento (2000)
819 7.1 7.5152. Animal House (1978)
7767 7.9 8.7151. Forrest Gump (1994)
After watching this film, I was so inspired, that I decided, on a whim, to go running all the way across the country. However, by the time I reached the end of my block, I was so devastatingly winded, & I was weezing so desperately for air, that I thought for sure, my left lung must've collapsed in on itself.
So, instead, I just reminded myself that "stupid is as stupid does", & went back into my house & ate an entire "box of chawk-letts".
Which, of course, is what life is kinda like.
3112 8 8.4150. Full Metal Jacket (1987)
"How tall are you private?"
"Sir, five foot nine, sir!"
"Five foot nine? I didn't know they stacked sh#t that high! You tryin' to squeeze an inch in on me somewhere, huh?"
" Sir, no sir!"
"Bullsh#t! It looks to me like the best part of you ran down the crack of your momma's ass and ended up as a brown stain on the mattress! I think you been cheated! Where in the hell are you from anyway, private?"
"Sir, Texas, sir!"
"Holy dog sh#t! Texas? Only steers and queers come from Texas, Private Cowboy. And you don't look much like a steer to me so that kinda narrows it down. Do you suck dicks?"
"Sir, no sir!"
"Are you a peter puffer?"
"Sir, no sir!"
"I'll bet you're the kinda guy that would f#ck a person in the ass and not even have the godd@mn common courtesy to give him a reach-around. I'll be watching you."
The Mighty Celestial's rating:
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