This Top Ten Tuesday, we list our top ten favorite movies. We have a rather eclectic list, and we think they’re unique and entertaining films.
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It’s Top Ten Tuesday, where we post a list of 10 of our best/favorite/most important book-ish-related items, depending on the theme of the week. Thank you to That Artsy Reader Girl for providing us with this feature and creative ideas.
“Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.”
Top Ten Favorite Movies
I decided to take a different route from today’s official theme and chose a freebie: My Top Ten Movies. I’m not an auteur, I like what I like, and as far as I’m concerned, these ten films resonated with me. Some of my choices are cheesy but so enjoyable, some are classics, and some may puzzle you.
We’ve listed the first 5 films below from best to least best. The bottom half we placed in random order.
1. Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith (2005)
Revenge of the Sith, George Lucas’ last film and final entry in the unfairly maligned Prequel trilogy, is so many things at once. It’s a Shakespearean space opera, a campy meme machine, a lynchpin of Star Wars lore, a critique of authoritarian politics, a tale of lost love, and the epitome of the depiction of the Tragic Hero. It’s a complex mix of these elements that makes it so successful.
At its core, Revenge of the Sith is a story of a young man’s fall from grace. Its narrative includes all the iconic tropes of tragedy.
The visuals are stunning, holding up much better than the previous two installments. Of course, this stellar John Williams score is my favorite of the 9 main Star Wars films. The acting by Ian MacDiarmid and Ewan MacGregor is campy and sensational. All these elements combine to create an emotionally impactful work of art.
2. Gone with the Wind (1939)
The Great American Novel is also the Great American Film. Gone with the Wind is widely considered one of the most influential and iconic films ever made, and it has won numerous awards, including 10 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress, and Best Supporting Actress.
It has also been selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry. Gone with the Wind stars Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O’Hara and Clark Gable as Rhett Butler. Based on the best-selling Pulitzer-prize-winning novel by Margaret Mitchell, this movie is as good—maybe even better—as the book.
Gone with the Wind is renowned for its masterful storytelling and captivating visuals that have captivated audiences for generations. It also features some of the most memorable characters and dialogue ever, making it a timeless classic.
3. Apocalypto (2006)
Apocalypto is an art-house action thriller set in the early 16th century and directed by Mel Gibson. It resonates with a powerfully universal tale. Jaguar Paw, a handsome young Mayan warrior with a lovely pregnant wife and a son, is the film’s protagonist who lives with his tribe in the jungles of Central America.
Their peaceful life is destroyed when a marauding band of warriors destroys their little village and kills or captures most of the people. Jaguar Paw is able temporarily to secure safety for his wife and son before being beaten and taken away as prisoners to the Mayan city. He escapes being sacrificed by the politicians and priests and must flee from a vengeful general and his men into the jungle to reclaim his freedom.
Apocalypto is set against a backdrop of a Mayan civilization on the brink of collapse, exploring themes of power, destiny, and the human spirit.
4. Goodfellas (1990)
Martin Scorcese’s magnum opus surpasses The Godfather in every way! Goodfellas bursts with energy, from the fast-paced editing to the pulsing, flawless soundtrack. The gaudy fashions from the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s were spot-on! The characters were genuinely scummy criminals—no gray morality here.
The film also features Scorcese’s most dynamic direction and breathtaking cinematography. There are so many compelling sequences here, including Henry Hill’s nerve-wracking arrest scenes.
Moreover, the performances are top-notch, with Ray Liotta and Joe Pesci delivering their finest work in the film. For instance, Pesci’s portrayal of Tommy DeVito is an iconic performance in gangster films, given his character’s impulsive and volatile nature.
5. Airplane! (1980)
Airplane! is scientifically proven to be the funniest movie ever made! Numerous critics and scholars have cited the film as one of the most hilarious of all time. This is due to its unique blend of physical comedy, satire, and slapstick humor. I’ve seen this movie at least thirty times, and it never fails to crack me up.
A spoof of the 1970s disaster films, Airplane! is actually one of the best examples of that genre. Our hero is Ted Stryker, a former pilot in “the war” who botched a flying mission that ended in his entire squadron’s deaths. He chases his ex-girlfriend, a stewardess, through an airport and on board a plane bound for Los Angeles. When the fish meal sickens the crew and half the passengers, Stryker must overcome his fear of flying, or the place will crash.
It starred Leslie Nielsen in his first comedic role and a slew of other serious actors making us laugh. Airplane! has been praised for certain risque jokes, which have been seen as groundbreaking.
Planet of the Apes (1968)
In Planet of the Apes, Charlton Heston’s hammy acting, Jerry Goldsmith’s score, and bleak direction make for a science fiction masterpiece. The groundbreaking special effects are excellent, and the prosthetic work on the apes is top-notch. The characters of Cornelius and Zira seem equally human as their test subjects.
This film is a classic for its powerful themes of oppression, which still hold up today.
The iconic ending scene is a testament to the power of the story and its message. The scene’s imagery, with Heston standing on a desolate beach, symbolizes human solitude, despair, and destruction. It is no wonder that this iconic moment has been recreated and referenced in many other works of art.
Quest For Fire (1982)
Quest for Fire is a French-produced movie about cavemen and, in my opinion, is the most romantic movie ever made—with a happy ending.
The film follows the adventures of a small tribe of primitive hominids trying to find fire. They find it, but they also discover there are other things just as critical in man’s evolution: love.
The leader of the group falls for a woman from a different tribe. She teaches him that sex, love, and family are all intertwined.
The movie is set in a mythical time, but it is still very relatable as it shows the development of civilization. Quest for Fire ultimately has a satisfying ending that shows the power of the human spirit, courage, and love.
Jesus Christ Superstar (1973)
This legendary film is an adaptation of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s original rock opera. It’s not hyperbole when I say Jesus Christ Superstar is the best musical ever filmed.
During the film, we explore Jesus’ story—the last week of his life—through his and Judas’ eyes. Judas believed Jesus was meant to be the leader of a noble revolutionary movement, not to be worshipped as an idol. Who is this man from Galilee? Jesus doubts himself, his humanity, and his true nature is left open-ended at the end.
Filmed in the deserts of Israel, it has a raw, stripped-down aesthetic and is a fusion of modern and ancient fashions. The film features a powerful soundtrack and outstanding performances from the cast. This includes Ted Neeley as Jesus, Carl Anderson as Judas, and Yvonne Elliman as Mary Magdalene.
Jesus Christ Superstar explores themes such as faith, fame, adulation, love, betrayal, and redemption. There is something inspiring about this story that people of all backgrounds and beliefs can appreciate. It’s a powerful, thought-provoking story that will stay with you long after you watch it.
Rosemary’s Baby (1969)
In Rosemary’s Baby, a mother’s love wins in the end.
Rosemary, a nice Catholic girl from–Nebraska? Oklahoma? I forget which–is married to a sleazy narcissistic actor who makes a literal deal with the Devil. To become a success, he pimps his wife out to a coven of nice, elderly Satanists to be raped by Satan himself. Rosemary is to carry his child, the Anti-Christ.
Despite being manipulated, terrorized, and threatened, Rosemary stands up to the coven of witches.
Ultimately, her love for her child and courage prevail, and the witches are shown just who is the real mother of the Anti-Christ.
Hellraiser & Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1987 & 1988)
I know it’s cheating to lump these two as one. However, together, Hellraiser and Hellraiser II form a cohesive whole (so much so I often forget the sequel’s full title includes Hellbound).
The first film in the long-running horror series was based on author Clive Barker’s novella, The Hellbound Heart. Barker directed the original, which was his first time directing a motion picture.
Hellraiser is a visual wonder with gloriously bloody special effects. It introduces the mysterious Lament configuration puzzle box and central characters: carefree, young Kirsty; lusty Julia; lecherous Uncle Frank; and, of course, Pinhead and the Cenobites. They are demons from hell–not the realm of the dead from Earthly religions, but a dimension that promises pleasure and suffering.
The sequel further explores the themes and ideas of the first film. The returning characters and the new–Doctor Channard and Tiffany–are tempted in their own ways by the lure of the box. It culminates in a satisfying resolution.
(That is until Hellraiser: Hellseeker, which I liked but messes up Kirsty’s character arc.)
What do you think of our picks for the top ten best movies? What films make up your top ten list?
As always, please drop a comment, and let’s talk romance, or in this case, movies!