Director: Steve Gordon
Screenplay: Steve Gordon
Starring: Dudley Moore, Lisa Minnelli
Dudley Moore is known better now because he was perceived in his real life to be much like his onscreen counterpart, Arthur, that is, perpetually drunken and looking for love in all the wrong places. The truth is, he was an accomplished humorist, painter and pianist as well. And who doesn’t like to drink a bit?
As Good as it Gets
Director: James L. Brooks
Screenplay: James L. Brooks, Mark Andrus
Starring: Jack Nicholson, Greg Kinnear, Helen Hunt
As Good as it Gets is another “bad-boys-being-bad-and-looking-for-love” movie. Jack Nicholson plays a lauded writer who’s also a giant ass. The film comes off as a bit anachronistic now but remains a solid piece of cinema.
Director: Michael Bay
Screenplay: Michael Barrie, Jim Mulholland, Doug Richardson
Starring: Will Smith, Martin Lawrence
Michael Bay has only made three good films in his long career and they all have Bad Boys in the title. He’ll increase that number when Bad Boys 4 drops next year.
The Big Chill
Director: Lawrence Kasdan
Screenplay: Lawrence Kasdan, Barbra Benedek
Starring: Glenn Close, Kevin Kline, Jeff Goldblum
The ultimate movie about old friends coming together and realizing that life ain’t always what it’s cracked up to be. It also singlehandedly ruined “You Can’t Always Get What You Want” for an entire generation.
Director: Newt Arnold
Screenplay: Sheldon Lettich
Starring: Jean-Claude Van Damme
For a plotless crawl through the world of underground martial arts, Bloodsport remains surprisingly compelling. We assume it has something to do with the dramatic flaring of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s nostrils.
Director: Jonathan Mostow
Screenplay: Jonathan Mostow
Starring: Kurt Russell, Kathleen Quinlan
A man’s wife is kidnapped after their car breaks down (hence the title) in the middle of the New Mexican desert. Now, he’s on a race against time (and his own mind) to find her in this “taut” “surreal” thriller. Also, makes for a cautionary tale explaining why you should never trust banjo-picking desert people.
Director: Jonathan Lyn
Screenplay: Jonathan Lyn
Starring: Tim Curry, Christopher Lloyd
Board game movies are almost never good (except for Battleship of course) but Clue broke the mold. In keeping with the spirit of the game, the film had three different endings, which went to different theatres around the country so you might have seen a different ending of the movie in California than the folks did in New York.
Director: Amy Heckerling
Screenplay: Amy Heckerling
Starring: Alicia Silverstone, Stacey Dash
Though Clueless came out over twenty years ago, it stays remarkably relevant throughout vast generational shifts. We have a hunch it has something to do with the timeless source material—Jane Austen’s Emma.
Director: Gus Van Sant
Screenplay: Mike Rich
Starring: Sean Connery, Rob Brown
Okay, so this movie really just rode the coattails of Good Will Hunting, but it did give us one of the greatest Internet memes of all time—“You the man now, dog.”
The Foot Fist Way
Director: Jody Hill
Screenplay: Ben Best, Jody Hill, Danny McBride
Starring: Danny McBride, Ben Best
Sure, Danny McBride basically just plays the same character in every film/television series—a foul-mouthed southerner with a tough exterior but truly a heart of gold. This, the first feature-length collaboration from the guys who’d go on to do Eastbound and Down is no different. But it’s hilarious all the same.
Director: Tim Burton
Screenplay: Jonathan Gems
Starring: Jack Nicholson, Glenn Close, Lukas Haas
Who’d have thought that a trading card series from the 60s would make such a fine film? Tim Burton. That’s who. Little green men invade Earth and hilarity ensues.
Once Upon a Time in Mexico
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Screenplay: Robert Rodriguez
Starring: Antonio Banderas, Salma Hayek, Johnny Depp
The third, and final, film in Robert Rodriguez’s Mexico Trilogy (along with El Mariachi and Desperado) is ambitious if uneven with a head-scratcher of a plot. Antonio Banderas and Johnny Depp kill it as usual and Willem Dafoe takes his drug lord character to incredible heights.
Saving Private Ryan
Director: Steven Spielberg
Screenplay: Robert Rodat
Starring: Tom Hanks, Matt Damon
There’s a popular Internet meme that gets circulated theorizing the amount of money the United States government has spent saving Matt Damon. Currently, the estimate is at about $900 million.
Director: Sam Raimi
Screenplay: David Koepp
Starring: Tobey Maguire, Willem Dafoe
With Spiderman: Homecoming, the wall-crawler is currently on his third iteration but, with those glassy eyes and boyish good looks, Tobey Maguire will always be Spiderman in our hearts. Plus, this one had Evil Dead Trilogy director Sam Raimi at the helm.
Teen Wolf Too
Director: Christopher Leitch
Screenplay: Tim Kring
Starring: Jason Bateman, Kim Darby
Before he was plugging holes as Michael Bluth, Jason Bateman was sinking baskets in this inexplicable sequel to Teen Wolf, which has recently been reboot as a sexy MTV teen drama. We’re sure there’s something redeeming in this film and we challenge our readers with finding it!
Director: Richard Donner
Screenplay: Carol Sobieski
Starring: Richard Pryor, Jackie Gleason
With fresh, 2017 eyes, a black man being purchased for the son of a mega-rich news magnate seems pretty problematic. But, hey man, this was the wild and free 1980s when nothing seemed to matter.
Director: Cameron Crowe
Screenplay: Cameron Crowe
Starring: Tom Cruise, Penélope Cruz
Despite making a handful of really great movies, Cameron Crowe can’t seem to catch much of a break. He makes understated rom-coms like Elizabethtown and critics dump on him for playing it too close to the vest. He makes big, heady narratives like Vanilla Sky and critics dump on him for overreaching. Despite some snares, Vanilla Sky is good.
Director: Franco Zeffirelli
Screenplay: Franco Zeffirelli, Christopher De Vore, William Shakespeare
Starring: Mel Gibson, Glenn Close
Alright, here’s the definitive hierarchy of Hamlet adaptations made between 1990 and 2000:
- The Lion King
- Hamlet (1996)
- Renaissance Man (starring Joe Pesci)
- Let the Devil Wear Black
- Hamlet (2000)
- Hamlet (1990)
Director: Roland Emmerich
Screenplay: Dean Devlin
Starring: Jean-Claude Van Damme, Dolph Lundgren
Universal Soldier is an… imaginative (?)… depiction of PTSD in the wake of the Vietnam War. You know the old tale—two soldiers (one insane) die and are then reanimated as super-soldiers in service of the U.S. government.
Coming to America
Director: John Landis
Screenplay: David Sheffield
Starring: Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall
The classic fish-out-of-water story but set in the 80s and in Queens, New York. It’s worth the watch just to see Eddie Murphy play every single character (including an old Jewish man) in the barbershop scene.