Thursday, November 30, 2023

103 Favorite Movies, #89 - 80

The list of my favorite 103 movies continues. The first entry is here (103-90).

And here we go:

89:  Airplane (1980)

“Surely you must be joking.” “I’m perfectly serious, and don’t call me Shirley.” A movie that delivers the laughs and doesn’t pretend to be anything else. Parts haven’t aged well but the movie doesn’t care. It’s hilarious. Available on Max, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.

88: True Lies (1994)

The last collaboration between James Cameron (Titanic, Avatar) and Arnold Schwarzenegger, this movie tried hard to be a buddy/action-comedy flick but parts of it are too serious and some are just cringy. Best part: Harrier jets blowing up a bridge. Available on Tubi (free) and AMC+

87: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story (2004)

Like Airplane, this movie goes for laughs over everything else. A bit more modern, it still has its cringy humor parts, but mostly you’ll laugh. Don’t worry about thinking, this movie isn’t about that. And the sports movie parts make you cheer to the heroes. Available on Max, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.

86:  National Treasure (2004)

A treasure map on the back of the original Declaration of Independence? The bad guy (Sean Bean, who survived the movie) wants to steal the document. So, the hero (Nicholas Cage) decides to steal it first. As clues (many based on American history) combine to lead the adventures to a possible treasure, the tension winds up. A fun, underrated, movie you should watch. Available on Disney+

85: Mission impossible (1996)

The first Mission Impossible movie had such a convoluted plot, it takes at least two viewing to figure out just what happened. But the tension is high as Tom Cruise has to find the bad guys while evading his own agency. And the climax is amazing (if a bit unrealistic). Worth the two watches, at least. Available on AMC+ and Paramount+

84: Gattaca (1997)

I’ve only seen this movie once (unlike most the others on the list) but it’s an important film dealing with the ethics of gene manipulation in humans. Some children are born natural, others are born enhanced genetically. There is prejudice against the natural born and this leads to many issues for Ethan Hunt who wants to be an astronaut but is natural born. And natural born can't be astronauts. Available on YouTube, Apple TV, and Vudu, all paid.

83: The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)

Based on a true story, it’s a cautionary tale of what money, drugs, and more drugs can do to a man. If only the hero had been ethical in his money making and avoided drugs, his world might not have come crashing down. Or his yacht sunk needlessly. Margo Robbie is amazing in this movie, as is Leonardo DiCaprio. Available on MGM+ and Amazon Prime Video.

82: To Have and Have Not (1944)

The film debut of Lauren Bacall (she was 19) and loosely based on a Hemmingway story. Humphry Bogart leads the cast during World War II intrigue. "You ever been stung by a dead bee?" "You know how to whistle, Steve, don't you?" A great old movie. Available on YouTube and Amazon Prime Video (paid on both).

81: Smokey and the Bandit (1977)

It was 1977 and the world needed a hero and Burt Reynolds obliged with a rebel shipping bootleg beer through the American Southeast. Sally Fields joins the crew as they race along interstate and back road, always on the lookout of "Smokey," i.e., the police. Nothing intellectual or deep, just fun and exceeding the speed limit (which was 55 mph nationally at the time). This was the number two highest grossing film of 1977. Available on AMC+ and Philo.

80: Spaceballs (1987)

Mel Brooks takes on Star Wars. While it references a few other science fiction movies such as Alien and Planet of the Apes, it's mostly a Star Wars parody. Gave us "ludicrous speed" and "They've gone plaid" (which Elon Musk used in names for his cars). Watch it with someone with a good sense of humor. Available on Max, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.

What to you think of my list so far? Let me know in the comments below. 

Next time, 79 - 70,

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