Thursday, June 14, 2007

Best Movies by Category

While You Were SleepingAndrew and I were out with friends gorging at Applebees last weekend (half-priced appetizers after nine you know) and the group got into a good discussion about favorite movies by genre. You're free to chime in with your two cents, here are my picks with a few editorial comments from the group thrown in:

1. Best romantic comedy: While You Were Sleeping. For sheer quotability alone. In fact, if I ever attend a family dinner without someone saying "These mashed potatoes are so creamy . . . Argentina has good beef . . . Caesar Romero was tall" I'll then know my family has been abducted by replaced by alien pod people. But Sandra Bullock and what's-his-nose-romantic-lead are terrific. Love that show. Anyway, it's the best though we agreed Return to Me was also a contender. I thought Runaway Bride was at the top of the list too but no one was with me on that one.

2. Hardest cry: Dead Poet's Society. Took me four or five theater viewings and enough Kleenex to supply a funeral home before I could get through it without sobbing. Not sniffling. Sobbing. Ask Andrew about his Simon Birch experience. I won't humiliate the man here, not in front of the world.

3. Best "heist" movie: I'm going to go with The Italian Job on this one. Though Ocean's 11 and Sneakers are both good too. Oddly enough many of these great films are remakes . . . any other's you'd nominate?

Casino Royale4. Best action movie: Tough one here. I know Carinne would say the "Bourne" series (she's a fan) but I think I may have to go with Casino Royale. Nope, I'm changing my mind. Even my love for the new James Bond can't get past my love for Raiders of the Lost Ark. I still love watching that one. Classic, funny, entertaining, everything's great but Karen Allen.

5. Most inspirational movie: This one's a difficult category. Kendall suggested Ghosts of Mississippi and Andrew said Gandhi, both of which are which are terrific. I think Gandhi nudges out the other by a neck.

6. Best mystery: Dial M for Murder which is perfect in its plot and development though I'm also a fan of M. Knight Shyamalan's movies, with Unbreakable being my favorite.

7. Funniest movie: O Brother Where Art Thou? Every time. And if this movie doesn't convince you the Cohen Brothers are hilarious, then see Raising Arizona. Though (forgive me Carinne) Napolean Dynamite is right there with them.

8. Best animated movie: Finding Nemo. Ellen Degeneres and Al Brooks are the perfect combo and coupled with the parenting-theme I could watch this over and over. And have. That turtle scene gets me every time . . . "takin' on the jellies." Heh.

9. Scariest movie: Putting aside my childhood feelings for Malificent from Sleeping Beauty (what was with those horns??) I'm going to have to say Wait Until Dark. Not because it still scares me but because it's so artfully done and scared me so much the first time I saw it. The movies that really bother me I won't watch (I couldn't make it through Silence of the Lambs even edited on t.v.) so I'll name this Hepburn classic. Poltergeist and Jaws were scary when I was a kid and are both pretty good scares.

10. Best romance: Out of Africa. Though this could also qualify as the Worst Romance too. Worst meaning most tragic, but I love this story. The music, the biplane, the countryside, the accents, everything. Also The Scarlet Pimpernel (the old 80s version with Anthony Edwards and Jane Seymour), Pride and Prejudice (the A&E version of course) could be contenders but they were never regular feature-length releases so they might not count.

11. Best fantasy: This isn't really fair, because Lord of the Rings takes up the top three spots with no competition, but after that I'd say Ron Howard's Willow for--once again--quotability and also because the two brownies are totally Lenny and Squiggy from Laverne and Shirley.

12. Best musical: The Sound of Music. Even Andrew loves it. I still remember having the 8-track cassette in our old rust-colored Chevy Impala station wagon. That and a Dione Warwick album. I liked The Sound of Music soundtrack better, doesn't every kid love the goat-puppet scene?

Grace Kelly, Rear Window13. Best sci-fi: Setting aside Star Wars (the obvious choice) I suppose it depends on your definition of science-fiction. Anything with aliens? Probably Close Encounters of the Third Kind (can you even eat mashed potatoes and not think of Richard Dreyfus?) Anything with science? Back to the Future or Contact. I like those too. This is probably the toughest category.

14. Best classic (pre-1980): Charade. Or maybe Rear Window (in my dreams I dress like Grace Kelly did in that one). Though Roman Holiday gets me every time.


Have you entered this month's Write-Away Contest yet? Deadline is this Saturday night, the theme is traditions.

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Miscellaneous-Mum said...

Great list! I like "The Great Train Robbery" with Sean Connery and Donald Sutherland, as a heist movie.

I must say, if I may, may I borow this idea for a TT of mine in the future........!!?!

Quoting you, naturally ;)

Scribbit said...

Oh, this is what I love about comments. I haven't seen that one but knowing how I love Sean Connery and Donald Sutherland I'll put it on my list definitely.

I love Dirty Dozen with Donald Sutherland too . . .

Michelle M Pillow said...

Great list!

Raven Paranormal Blog said...

Happy T13! Great list!

Anonymous said...

hi michelle: for romantic comedy, i love sandra bullock in just about anything. but i soooo love the runaway bride movie. such a hoot. oh, i gotta see that puppy again!

i loved the "dead poet's society," but i think my favorite hardest CRY SOB was either "titantic" and or "terms of endearment" back in the 80s.

"casino royale" was sooo enjoyable for me, probably the first time i have totally enjoyed a james bond movie in years. daniel craig nailed it and did so good in his acting!

most inspirational movie for me is "the ultimate gift" -- one of the best movies i have ever seen -- really got to me and made me think and not just a feel good movie, but an "i want to do better" movie. i am buying the DVD as soon as it comes out (and i rarely buy movies).

i loved loved loved that scene in "oh brother where art thou?" when they sang!! what a hoot! and it was apparently really them singing! wow. so funny.

"sound of music" is my fav musical, too. always chokes me up still to this day and i have seen it a million times. great great!

STAR WARS fan big time. no other words necessary :) oh yea, i am a fan, but i do not go to conventions and i do not dress up in their uniforms! :)

fun post, michelle! ~chow, kathleen :)

Crimson Wife said...

Great choices! I did not care for "Unbreakable" but my DH loves it.

Gattina said...

I have seen some of them, but I like commedies with Hugh Grant, he is so english, lol !

Robin said...

Salt On Our Skin with Greta Scaaci has always been a favorite tearjerker drama of mine, but no one else seems to have ever heard of it.

Scribbit said...

Nope, never heard of but loved her in Camille.

That's the great thing about Netflix, just stick it in the queue.

Carrie K. said...

I may have to borrow this idea - though I don't think I could keep my choices to one for each category. I'll give you credit if I steal it, of course!

I also love While You Were Sleeping - I've seen it at least 15 times.

Ni Yachen said...

I love Oh, Brother Where Art Though? I even quoted it today. I have to say Power of One for most inspirational. Joy Luck Club would win for hardest cried. My roomate and I went on a double date to that movie and cried so hard we were styfulling blubbers. :)

la bellina mammina said...

You've Got Mail is my all time favorite comedy! You've got a great list, Michelle!

Veronica Mitchell said...

Finding Nemo? Bah. It's the Jungle Book, every time. You can't beat Phil Harris as a bear.

And action movie - the Bourne movies are definitely contenders, though I would add The Transporter to the list.

Best Romance: Somewhere in Time.

jeanie said...

Oh I loved Somewhere in time - although I am more a Harry met Sally than Sleeping fan.

Monsters Inc did it for me way more than Nemo.

And Heist films? Seriously? I don't think I have ever seen one unless by accident while channel surfing!

And what category for Harold and Maude? Withnail and I? Two people in the title films (thus When Harry met Sally also fits!)

Darla said...

I like most of these, but absolutely could not pick just one favorite in each genre. Maybe 13 favorites... :)

Thanks for reminding me of some great movies I haven't seen in a while.

Yuva said...

on first sight, I would agree most of your choices.. but with few minutes to thinks.. my choices:

Best animated movie-- Toy Story

Best musical-- Moulin Rouge

Best fantasy-- Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter series

Best Sci-Fi-- Jurassic Park, terminator, alien, matrix,

Best action-- face off, broken arrow, top gun,

mystery-- Sixth Sense, shawshank Redemption,

Best romantic comedy-- When Harry Met Sally, as Good as it Gets,

AuthorMomWithDogs said...

I'd forgotten about some of these! Thanks for the reminder. And thanks for a few new one's I hadn't seen. On they go to our viewing list!

susan said...

Love your movie list! I also list movies often that we have seen, and agree - isn't Netflix great!

Just a few of our favs - Notting Hill (Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts!), all M. Night Shamalamadingdong movies, Oceans - (all that eye candy!).

Jeana said...

Oh, best heist movie has to be Quick Change. Is it a heist? Is it a comedy? It's both! (Can you tell I'm not a heist movie connoisseur?)

I love that Unbreakable was your favorite M. Night one--it was under-appreciated in my opinion.

This was fun. I'm going to bookmark it for movies that I need to watch.

Megan@SortaCrunchy said...

"O Brother, Where Art Thou?" Yes! Yes! YES! By far one of the most cleverly written, superbly acted movies ever! The fact that it is a comedy is just icing on the cake.

(The hubby and I will never tire of quoting this one to each other. "'Course it's Pete! Look at him!")

Great list.

SusieJ said...

I love M for murder. Dead Poet's -- I can't remember it. Must watch again. And definitely Must Wait Until Dark. We'll have to grab a bowl of popcorn and watch some of these together.

Leslie said...

There are so many great movies, it's so hard to narrow it down!

Babystepper said...

I'm right with you on a lot of those.

Our family still quotes While You Were Sleeping at big meals, too. We all think we're being so clever. =)

Thea said...

I love movies, but I have to say that I haven't seen a lot of the older ones and the less "mainstream" movies, but here are my favorites...

Best romantic comedy - The Princess Bride. This is by far one of my all time favorite movies.

Best action - Anything with Jackie Chan, his Hong Kong stuff or his US stuff. I like the fact that a lot of it is action without guns.

Best mystery - I'm going to have to go with Rear Window on this one. Or maybe Sixth Sense.

Best animated - The Little Mermaid. While I love animated movies, this is one that I still quote and sing the songs.

Best fantasy - Harry Potter is always near the top, but I have to go with my sentimental choice of The Neverending Story.

Best musical - Are there other musicals besides The Sound of Music? But I am looking forward to Hairspray...

Best classic - To Kill a Mockingbird or 12 Angry Men.

Daisy said...

"Blues Brothers!" It could go in best musical or comedy, but it's such a quotable, singable, hilarious movie it belongs on any list.
"Always" is our tearjerker movie. Sniff, smile, hug, sniff...

Marie N. said...

I'll nominate _The Umbrellas of Cherbourg_ for best romance. Even with subtitles, it is a movie I can't get enough of.

Anonymous said...

I think one of the best classic movies is Mother Goose with Cary Grant and Leslie Caron. No one has much heard of it, but it makes me laugh every time.

Jordan (MamaBlogga) said...

Oh, you MUST see The Sting (heist movie).

Of course, I'm a big Robert Redford fan, so maybe I'm a little biased. Sneakers is okay, The Sting is a CLASSIC. You like Paul Newman? He's in it, too.

I'm so glad someone else appreciates Unbreakable as much as I did! I was just thinking about it yesterday!

An Ordinary Mom said...

Best Inspirational: Remember the Titans. Loved this show!

I must see Casino Royale. I am going to go put it on hold at the library right now ...

Lisa said...

Rmemeber "The Fugitive"? For some reason that stuck in my head while reading a part of your list...

"While you were sleeping" was great. I also loved "Sabrina" and "The Illusionist"


Did you see Vanity Fair? LOVED it. But don't know what category it would fit in...

Scribbit said...

Jordan I had the HARDEST time coming up with heist movies but yes, I've seen The Sting and it IS classic, possibly a better choice than The Italian Job.

Veronica, my Dad is the biggest fan of The Transporter, loves them. Me not so much but they're definitely action, I'll give you that.

Lisa, I liked the Illusionist but couldn't put it on the list because the characters irritated me a bit.

Loved the latest Batman movie though, speaking of Christian Bale.
Susan, that's funny that you said M. Knight Shamalamadingdong, that's what my family says too.

Loved the Futigive, I was pregnant with Grace when I saw it in the theater and nearly went into labor during that train scene. Funny how amazing it was when I saw it but it was so popular and replayed so often that now it looks kind of fake on t.v.

Gattina, if you're a Hugh Grant fan you should see The Englishman who Went up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain. It's really cute.

Thea, I love Jackie Chan too--probably Operation Condor the best. Maybe First Strike.

Ally Bean, LOVED Father Goose. Anything with Cary Grant actually. Charade, Penny Serenade, Night and Day, Every Girl Should Be Married, North by Northwest . . .

minerva said...

We could so easily be friends!! Sound of Music, M for Murder, Napoleon Dynamite, While you were sleeping, Italian Job, Lord of the Rings. Yes, you have very good taste!

Crazy Working Mom said...

Wow, I LOVE your list. The Italian Job is an AWESOME movie. I watched it again last weekend.
Thanks for dropping by. :)

Amy W said...

I absolutely love While You Were Sleeping. On my all time fav list.

Another hardest cry - Hope Floats, Steel Magnolias.

And I think Dead Poets Society can be most inspirational as well.

My Ice Cream Diary said...

What??? How can you not like Karen Allen? She has some of the best lines in that movie. My sister and I can't eat together to this day without stuffing our faces, taking a drink of water, and mumbling "I bet you would". My brother named his first son Indiana and I always have to say it the way Allen did, "Indeeeee".

Amy W said...

Neverending Story is awesome as a fantasy.

Never Been Kissed is another good romance comedy.

And another good romance movie? Sabrina with Harrison Ford.

Sorry, just had to add more of my two cents...

binkytown said...

I LOVE the sound of music! Best musical for sure.

I loved Snatch (by Madonna's husband)for a heist movie. It's also where I learned that Brad Pitt actually can act.

Lucy van Pelt said...

I have to put in my vote for The Princess Bride for best comedy. And the most inspirational movies for me are Shadowlands and Billy Eliot.

Lori- Fairytales & Margaritas said...

One of my favorites, although I don't know what category, is I am Sam with Dakota Fanning and Sean Penn. Really moving!

Damselfly said...

I love these movies too, but I haven't seen the Sandra Bullock romantic comedy. I'll have to add it to my Blockbuster list!

Sandy said...

OH, Casino royale? Great movie, with a great-looking actor.

And I'm mostly in agreement with the list, although I'd vote for Love, Actually for best romantic comedy.

Danielle said...

OoooOOO what a list. You have some of my favorites in there.

Happy TT

Be well and enjoy the day

Ni Yachen said...

If you are going to discuss Jackie Chan his best movie hands down is Drunken Master with Drunken Master II a close second.

Do you have a favorite foreign movie? My bet would be Seven Samurai or Eat Drink Man Woman.

Jane said...

We just saw Raiders on the big screen at our second run theater. It was the first time I had seen it. It was awesome! I love When Harry Met Sally, Romancing the Stone, Yours, Mine & Ours (the old one). Mean Season scared the bejeebers out of me. Great to think about all the great movies there are. I bet it was a lot of fun at Applebees!

dcrmom said...

Interesting post. I was thinking Steel Magnolias for the Hardest Cry, but I forgot about Dead Poet's.

I would have voted for Runaway Bride too, although I did like While You Were Sleeping. I'm just a Julia Roberts fan thru and thru.

Many of your suggestions I haven't seen. I'm making a list!

Amy said...

YEA! Everyone always tells me that Ocean's 11 is better than the Italian Job and I always disagree!! I love The Italian Job.

Pieces said...

I'm glad someone mentioned Princess Bride. The best movie of all time.

Dead Again is my favorite for suspense.

Your Sis Melis said...

Michelle just thought these might be some good ones for you too see if you haven't.

Best Inspitational Movie...Hands down.... The Power of One. Amazing movie. So beatiful and I have see it a million times and I still can't keep my self from crying in the movie. If you haven't seen it...SEE IT!

Best Mystery...The Spanish Prisoner...again...not too many people have seen it, but it is a good suspense twist and turn movie.

And just to throw this one out...for a good scary movie; a scary movie that is actually watchable is Red Eye. Scary enough to keep your cheeks clentch, but not too scary where you can't watch it again. Plus the girl in it is actually really smart and does some great know...instead of just falling and whinning through out the movie! It is a must see scary movie.

Heffalump said...

I can't believe no one has put down You've Got Mail for romantic comedy. I love that movie!
I will have to think about this further and come up with a list of my own favorite movies. So hard to choose though!

JAM said...

Great list. I wouldn't know where to begin. I've NOT seen so many classic and supposedly great movies, my choices for these would not really count.

Here's a few though. I watched Rudy over and over when I went back to college for my engineering degree. Helped me to keep my eye on the prize.

I love the movie Stargate with Kurt Russell for some reason, and have watched it over and over. I thought Contact was a great movie and have watched it and actually think the movie was way better than the book, which is rare for me. I did love the Bourne movies, I thought they did a decent job of capturing the essence of the incredibly complex books, which are some of my all-time favorite books.

I'm not much into comedy movies, but I have seen Waterboy with Adam Sandler many times, maybe because he skewers Louisiana in it. I wasn't offended, I thought it was great.

I had never seen a musical until I met Lovely Wife, and Sound Of Music is a favorite of mine now.

The only movie I remember actually crying, as in sobbing, boo hoo hoo, was the old Jimmy Stewart civil war movie called Shenandoah. When the boy believed to be dead shows up at the end and the family's in church singing a hymn, well, I cried like a crack baby. I get misty even thinking about it now.

Corrie said...

Oh, I'm late to this one.

How about Lorenzo's Oil for tearjerker and inspirational? I love it when the parents are heros (and it's based on a real story)

Foreign Film plugs:
Count of Monte Cristo w/Gerard Depardieu
My Mother's Castle (french)
Run, Lola Run (German - scifi)
Manon of the Spring - (french drama)

Stie: My Favorite Things said...

Great list!

I have to add "Terms of Endearment" as the most tear-jerking movie of ALL TIME. Seriously. When Debra Wingeris laying there in the hospital dying, and they bring her kids in to say goodbye. And she tells her oldest son that she knows he loves her...UGH. Can hardly write about it now without choking up. So, so good.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Holy comment trail, woman! I gotta hang out with you more often (and lure some of your readers my way, of course!).

I have to admit I'm not enough of a movie fan to have much input here. Books, sure. Movies? Notsomuch.

I like you anyway, though.

kailani said...

I LOVE The Sound of Music! It's such a classic! Finding Nemo is a favorite, too. I'll watch it even if the kids are not around!

Barbara H. said...

I love Roman Holiday, LOTR, and Finding Nemo. Dead Poet's Society made me cry, too.

Suzanne said...

While at my very first sleepover (I was 5 or 6), my friend and I snuck downstairs to see what her teenage sisters and their friends were watching. It was Poltergeist... and one of the teenage boys had to piggyback me back to my house at 11:30 at night. I was freaked out for weeks. Funny thing is I watched it again a few months back and thought "Holy cow, what a dumb movie".

Suzanne said...

Oh my yes, and I agree with Veronica Mitchell: The Transporter! So great. (Same guy as "Handsome Rob" in Italian Job. Jason Statham... a cutie little butt kicker!)

Coralie said...

I'm so with you on Willow, but I'd tie it with Princess Bride. But I must beg to differ in sci-fi, and offer Independence Day as a replacement, with the original Planet of the Apes as a close second - or possibly a tie.

IMHO :-)

jen said...

i like your lists. and am with you on O Brother.

Anonymous said...

Best Romantic Comedy:
Say Anything with John Cusack… I love this movie because Lloyd never just gives up on her… he knows enough to know that what they had was real without being a creepy stalker.
As Good as it gets is also an amazing movie!
Best Classic romantic comedy would be Some like it Hot with Marilyn Monroe!

Hardest Cry:
Hotel Rwanda…just get it Crash and My name is Sam are deft tear jerquers too.

Best "heist" movie: The God Father’s

Best Action Movie: Die Hard… I love Bruce Willis

Most insirational movie: Schindlers List and shawshank redemption. and i loved walk the line and Requiem for a Dream is prob my most inspirtantional please go and see it!!

Best mystery: Clue lol I love that movie.

Funniest Movie: Tootsie, Officespace, Billy Madson, Anchor Man, Young Frankenstein, The Graduate, Arsenic and Old Lace, American Graffit, Hook, Liar Liar, Beetle juice, the jerk, Mall rats, theres something about mary there are sooooo many great funny movies I cant just pick one!

Best Animated Movie: Who framed Roger Rabbit, Shreck, Monster House

Scariest movie: It, The Shining, The exocorcist.

Best Romance: Casablanca, west side story, romeo and juliet, singin in the rain, the princess bride, pretty women

Best Fantasy: Narnia, HARRY POTTER, Lord of the rings, superman & spiderman

Best Musical: Grease and the sound of music, and high school musical

Best Sci-Fi: Star wars, Back to the future, x-men, the war of the worlds, x-men

Best Classic: Casablanca tops it amazing flim humprey bogart will blow you away with his none stop amazing lines like “we’ll always have paris” “Play it again” and “out of all the gin joints she could have walked in to, why’d it have to be mine” or something close lol its an amazing flim after that prob breakfast at tiffany’s or the wizard of oz

I hope you liked my list!!


J Fife said...

Ah, Dead Poet's Society. I choke up simply at the thought.

Anonymous said...

Great choices. Anyone with a love for Dead Poets Society and Willow will always be welcome in my home. Side story -- my best friend was on a subway last year and saw Knox Overstreet and totally acted like a junior high girl with a crush and timidly approached him, totally blushing, and said, "Um, you're Knox Overstreet." I guess she made his day.

And I have to say, if you tell people who know nothing about the movie Return to Me that it is funny, they will get mad at you about a half hour into and accuse you of lying. I learned this the hard way.

Melissa R. Garrett said...

Hardest cry - Steel Magnolias or Sophie's Choice.

Italian Job - FAB movie!

Great list :-)

Alicia said...

Yep "While you were sleeping" that is one of my favorite movies!!!!
stay tuned in a couple of weeks, I will be reinventing my blog, which I have sadly not kept up with....but now I have a friend who is as she puts it inspiring me....I am looking at it as a challange to try to keep up with her.......

Robin said...

L.O.V.E. "Roman Holiday"...makes me smile whenever I even think about it :).

Wish I had been by for a visit...writing about a special tradition in our family would've been a fun post for me...

Guess I need to keep up a bit better...:).

Jenn @ Frugal Upstate said...

For Sci Fi, if you discount Star Wars, I'd go with "Enemy Mine". If you've never seen it, you really need to. There is an intergalactic war and two "men" (one is actually a lizard type guy) crash land while fighting each other on a planet where they have to survive together. . . .unexpected tear jerker in places, funny places-they don't make the cultural difference or languages an easy problem for them to overcome. Just a good movie-has some actual moral content to it.

For sweetest, or maybe romantic I'd have to go with Greencard (although When Harry Met Sally is classic too). Gerard Depardieu is one of those guys who actually manages to not be good looking, but still be sexy. Plus the story where they pretend to be married so he can get his green card and she can get her apartment. . . sigh.

I'm with so many others on Comedy-for pure quotability and satire it is The Princess Bride. My favorite movie of all time. Plus it's such a broad satire of a fairy tale that Princess (6) loves watching it with me. (Be warned, there is one scene where someone is actually run through with a sword and killed-but he is a very bad man. If you don't like kiddos watching that sort of thing you might want to preview) starting with the grandson saying in a disappointed voice "A Book?" and the grandfather saying "That's right, a book. When I was your age, TV was called Books" Best quote "You fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous is never get involved in a land war in Asia, but only slightly less well-known is this: never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line!"

I'll probably get stoned, but I think that having the Sound of Music play annually on TV, and then be done by my highschool drama club just burned me out on it. My favorite movie musical (now stage musical would be another ball of wax) is Little Shop of Horrors. Steve Martin's cameo as the Sado-Masochistic Dentist is hilarious, the show is funny and the music is upbeat and singable.

Not a category, but I'm adding it :) Favorite "cult" film: Clerks. It is ribald, but hilarious. That was my favorite movie in my early 20's