Coming up with my top 10 for this blog hop was really tough. My love for movies extends to all kinds of genres, and mixing them up into one countdown was difficult. So I decided to think about which movies have made the biggest impact on my personally, and think about movies that I can watch over and over again...and still find something new from them.
So without further adieu, here's my Top 10 Movies of ALL TIME in descending order:
10. Saving Private Ryan (1998)...this is the first movie I got when I first bought a big screen and a surround sound system. The D-Day scene is incredible intense. Graphic, but so damn real, it's scary. And I'm sure it was more frightening in real life. One of the greatest war movies ever, Saving Private Ryan gives us just a tiny taste of what war is like.
9. Forrest Gump (1994)...I know, this movie is far-fetched and so incredibly sentimental. But I love it. I love the historical backdrop, and the loveable Forrest contrasted with the destructive Jenny. Personally, I think Lieutenant Dan steals the show. I enjoyed how episodic this movie is, and how Forrest unknowingly finds himself in the middle of so many important historic events.
8. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)...as a kid, this movie spoke to me. It had action and adventure, a touch of the supernatural, humor, snappy dialogue, some romance, plus Han Solo, um, I mean Harrison Ford. Little or no CGI here - so everything feels much more real. This is what a blockbuster should be like.
7. Gladiator (2000)...the battle scenes in the movie are epic and raw. No bullets, laser guns, or magic powers. Just a blunt instrument and strength. I loved studying Roman history, and this movie might not be historically accurate, but it does give the viewer a good sample of what life was back then. Lots of back stabbing and political intrigue, along with blood-thirsty gladiators fighting to the death. Plus, the soundtrack is astounding. Great music to write to.
6. Casablanca (1942)...Maybe it's all the quotable one liners, or the witty quips and dialogue, but I just love this movie. When I think about how to write good dialogue, I always come back to Casablanca. Every character in this film is so rich and three dimensional. It's a film ingrained in our culture, and I can watch it over and over again.
5. The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966)...science fiction and Westerns are actually cut from the same cloth, and this movie just kicks ass. Clint Eastwood is the epitome of the anti-hero. The story is compelling - you've got three dudes who want buried treasure. It's a Western with fully developed characters, and it's the seemingly mundane things happening during scenes that carry the most weight in storytelling.
4. The Princess Bride (1987)...reminds me of how I feel about Casablanca. I read the book, but I love the movie more. The sword fight scene between Inigo and the Dread Pirate Roberts goes down as one of my all time favorites. At first, I was annoyed with the story arc of the boy and his grandfather, but I find it a really sweet aspect of this movie. Plus, this movie includes the late Andre the Giant!
3. The Matrix (1999)...the style, the kick ass fight scenes, the Philosophy 101 injected into it, and of course the guns akimbo and bullet time! The sequels were okay, but the first film is absolutely perfect. Lots of allegory and existentialism in the movie, but just on the surface, it's fantastic eye candy. I think I read somewhere that over 90,000 bullets were fired in this movie.
2. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)...once again, a case where the movie exceeds the book (or short novella). The acting is phenomenal, and you begin to feel sympathy for the prisoners. This is a profound movie, and it's central theme of friendship and hope are inspiring. One of my all time favorites.
1. Star Wars (1977)...this movie impacted my entire life, and it's what drove me to become interested in mythology and science fiction/fantasy. Star Wars is more than just a movie. It's impact on our culture is pretty darn amazing. I still love deep and meaningful science fiction, but Star Wars allowed us to just have some old-fashioned fun while watching a sci-fi film. The special effects industry took massive leaps during the filming of Star Wars too. Of all the movies I can think of, Star Wars is the one that served as a foundation for what I do today.
My honorable mentions in no particular order:
Seven Samurai (1954)
Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (2003)
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000)
The Godfather (1972)
To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
Batman Begins (2005)
Planet of the Apes (1968)
Kill Bill, vol. 1 (2003)
The Exorcist (1973)
Ip Man (2008)
Blogging since 2005.
Medical sales warrior by day, writing ninja by night...
I am the author of The Mechanica Wars series. The first book, Dragonfly Warrior, will be published in January, 2014 by 4 Wing Press.
I love science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, biographies, and chocolate chip cookies.