Top 100 Favorite Movies|10-1


The levels and elements of personal enjoyment, surprise, personal attachment/nostalgia, stand up to rewatches, and personal connection were fundamental in selecting these ten films. I include some personal connection in these reviews so they may look a little longer to read. 😛 Finally, a big thank you to my best friend James for inspiring me to attempt this list in the first place.croods-poster-emma-stone

10. The Croods | 2013 | PG

To everyone who assumes that once I’ve made up my mind that I will hate a movie and thinks “of course she didn’t like it then!”: let me present to you The Croods. I blame most of my first hate on the absolutely horrible advertising the film recieved–the films itself has so much more heart and deeper content than just slap-stick humor and modern family jokes. I liked it enough to rewatch it several times. Ultimately, what connects this movie to me so strongly is the story of Eep and her family leaving the cave and “never being afraid.” Almost literally my parents kept my sister and I in a bubble where “everything new was bad” and that everything in the world would result in our deaths. With my mom now trying to give Kayla and I freedom as young adults, I really feel like I’m finally leaving the cave and truly getting to live instead of “not dying.” 

Although this movie is pretty temporary here at the bottom of my top ten, I am positive that I will always love this film for it’s message and special-ness to my personal story. (Also the movie features a lot of great elements like meta modern family humor, a teenage guy who isn’t a oily or slick but is actually decent nice person, beautiful animation, Emma Stone, and a creative prehistoric world!)

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9. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 | 2011 | PG-13

Considering my history of being opposed to Harry Potter, for one of it’s movies to hold position 9 is pretty darn good if you ask me. This movie is exactly how you want to end a big franchise. It is the strongest Harry Potter film, extremely powerful with emotion, action, and satisfying conclusion. Even though I knew of several deaths, I was very surprised by how much I was moved by them and the ending was so beautiful that I cried during that too. The great battle of Hogwarts is one of the best adventures I’ve seen on screen as well.

On a personal level, getting to the position where I felt free enough to watch Harry Potter without feeling like a bad Christian was big all on its own, so to get a great ending to a beautiful saga is like double the blessing. Although I’m not completely free of fear of what people might think of me, on the other side there is still something very freeing to be able to own my love for Harry and not let what other people think hinder me personally. It’s for these reasons Deathly Hallows Part 2 made it to my top 9 movies!Ben-Hur-1959-movie-poster

8. Ben-Hur | 1959 | G

My most favorite classic epic, Ben-Hur has been one of my favorite stories since my early teens. The themes of revenge and forgivness have never been caputered on such a scope of epicness to me before or since. This is my favorite story tied into Biblical events as we see how Christ’s touch on Judah Ben-Hur’s life eventually effects him in the end. The build to the magnificent and raw chariot race is one of my favorite moments in cinema history. I have always loved Stephen Boyd as Massala and Charlton Heston truly owns Judah Ben-Hur in a way that completely makes the movie. The soundtrack is one of my personal favorites, the cinematography is amazing, and the story and characters are timeless. Truly one of the best epics ever created.beauty_and_the_beast_ver1

7. Beauty and the Beast | 1991 | G

Easily my most favorite fairy tale of all times, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast has been a favorite of mine since I was small. The magic of it’s heart, music, animation and characters has yet to die from my soul. Just like The Prince of Egypt, the songs are not only emotionally moving but they also move the plot forward or really give you a great glimpse into a character’s dimension that will help build the story at the end. I consider this the ultimate princess Disney feature and easily one of Disney’s best, most unbeatable works of art. The animation is flawless and the atmosphere never fails to fill me with intrigue and bated breath. To me, this is the ultimate love story and the impact it still has on me today when I think of heroines, love, selflessness, magic and animation itself is truly special to me.hot_fuzz_ver4_xlg

6. Hot Fuzz | 2007 | R

Easily my favorite comedy of all time (sorry, 21 Jump Street, but the Brits take it.) Hysterically clever, the film delivers laughs that are strongly balanced by fantastic characters, a strong mystery and lots of metaphorical moments that completely respect but laugh at the action genre on a whole. Simon Pegg perfectly captures Nicholas Angel’s rigid love for justice while Nick Frost plays the perfect sidekick Danny Butterman who isn’t too silly and perfectly compliments Angel’s personality—these two characters and actors are one of the most ultimate duos in cinema and TV history. Yes, I just said that. However, the one thing I love best about this movie besides the humor, action spoofy-ness and characters, is it’s Miss Marple/English Village flavored mystery. It hearkens back to my first love–a good old fashioned who-dun-it! Rolled together it creates truly one of the best comedies/action/mystery flicks of all time.Star Wars - A New Hope (1977) Style A by Tom Jung

5. Star Wars: A New Hope | 1977 | PG

I know everyone loves Empire Strikes Back; I love it too. But whenever I think of my love for Star Wars, I always think of A New Hope. There’s just a special place in my heart for the very first Star Wars film and that’s how it beat Empire. This movie is just about the definition of the word ‘classic’. The soundtrack is amazing, the effects still hold up well today and the story’s plot flow is perfection. I love the introduction we receive to Princess Leia, Darth Vader, Luke Skywalker , Han Solo, Chewbaca and of course the droids. Everything plays a role in the film with a solid opening and a conclusive ending which I prefer to the big cliff-hanger, even if that had a great impact on cinema history with Empire. There is so much to love in A New Hope but I really shouldn’t need to go on much longer here :P. There are few movies that can even come to rival the greatness of Star Wars and the impact it’s had on pop culture and intimate lives–myself included! All hail the great sci-fi film of the ages!posters12/11/08

4. Rocky | 1976 | PG

I love a great underdog story and this easily my favorite of them all. However, to me Rocky is more than just an excellent boxing story with a fantastic delivery of one man’s personal struggles in and out of the ring. To me, Rocky presents a strong representation of true manhood. Coming from a spiritual background where outward perfection was strived for more than a humble spirit in many of the men around me, watching Rocky was like a breath of fresh air and a strong reminder to me of what real men are made up of. Strength of body and mind are nothing in a man if they are not clothed in a gentle spirit. Rocky is one of my personal heroes because he is a very gentle man, shown by how he approaches people, goes out of his way to help others in his own way, and steadily attempts to win Adrian’s heart. For these reasons (and the simple fact that this is simply a stunning film) Rocky will always mean the world to me.tlk-new-poster

3. The Lion King | 1994 | G

The only reason The Lion King managed to beat Beauty and the Beast was because of my emotional connection, which even I find strange since I didn’t grow up seeing it a million times or anything. Recently playing the movie in the background of my day, I choked up about six times and got chills at least five and I wasn’t even paying that much attention. These are not even your classic moments like Mufasa’s passing; this is moments like Rafiki speaking to Simba and the log bridge scene during Hakuna Matata. I can’t explain my connection to this film, I only know it’s there. The songs and soundtrack, voice talent, and animation strongly combined with the grown up themes of throne-stealing, murder, and fear, creates one of, if not maybe Disney’s best animated film of all time.0103074_big

2. Thelma and Louise | 1991 | R

One of the best female-oriented films I’ve ever seen; this spoke to me and my own personal situation which is how it became my second favorite movie. I’ve always knew of the names Thelma and Louise; they’ like Lucy and Ethel or Lewis and Clark. 😛 But when I finally got around to watching the movie, I was so happy and surprised to discover it was a masterpiece must-see. Themed with timeless invaluable friendship and taking control of one’s own life and choices, Thelma and Louise both empowered and uplifted me as a woman and human being. Humorous and delightful while also being dark and somber, the film delivers a well balanced plot and character journey which I strongly related to because I myself am just beginning to make my own life discions. For more amazing reasons why this movie is fantastic, head over to my latest guest post on J and J Productions when you’re done here!5k8lv1eXe7vbeJ57eXLIKxFamAQ

1. Clue | 1985 | PG

Out of all the genres that could compete to win my number one film, my love for the who-dun-it mystery genre won out, and it actually won very easily. From the beginning of this list, I never had a hard time deciding that Clue would reign at the top. In fact, during the construction of this post, I rewatched Clue with my sister and about twenty minutes in, she turned to me and said, “This feels like it should be your number one movie, Jamie.” I definitely knew then that this movie was truly my cinema soul-mate.

It’s everything I want from a murder mystery; quotable dialogue, a fantastic period setting of the 1950’s, lovable slapstick humor that isn’t too over the top, continuous plot twists, a sly self-awareness of it’s genre, and truly quirky characters (all of them gems but my favorites including Mrs. Peacock, Mr. Green, and Tim Curry as Wadsworth the Butler.) The multiple endings hearkens back to the game board where you can get a different murderer each round; however there is an official ending that wraps up the film perfectly. I’ve rewatched this film countless times and continue to catch little things, expressions, or moments that add to the atmosphere or plot!

Interestingly, I’ve only played the board game a few times and my attachment to the film does not come from the game itself. Growing up, 80 percent of the books I read were mysteries, so it should be no mystery (HA!) that my personal attachment to the genre should transfer to films. Overall, Clue is simply a fantastically enjoyable mystery film. While one will either get it or not get it, either way I highly recommend it, because, after all, it is my number one favorite film of all time.

~Jamie

Top 100 Favorite Movies|20-11


Well, we’ve hit my top twenty (plus a bonus in this post-because of rearranging.) Although I’ve loved that I’ve been able to do this blog series, I’m also excited to be near the end! No lie; it has been very challenging to come up with 100 mini reviews within the past two months. Still, I’ve been thrilled just to have achieved this task of ranking some of my favorite movies, even if they rearrange themselves every so often. Seriously, it’s a huge accomplishment for me personally! Okay, enough talking, let’s go!

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20. How to Train Your Dragon | 2010 | PG

This actually feels a little low for How To Train Your Dragon because this movie is genuinely awesome–like, pretty much everything about it is awesome. I tend to be a little protective of the film-it always made me mad to hear church friends call Hiccup a modern day wimp, even before I watched the movie. Hiccup is one of my favorite animated characters Dreamworks has ever made because he’s a hard worker even though his size prohibited him from being like everyone else. He’s an underdog, he’s compassionate, smart, has a fun sense of humor and brave enough to change his entire culture by learning to not be afraid of new knowledge. Besides Hiccup and Toothless (who can dislike Toothless) being some of my favorite characters, the film has an amazing soundtrack, fantastic visuals, lots of fu and suspense along with the interesting setting of the Vikings. How To Train Your Dragon is very easily one of the best animated films I’ve seen and it’s very easy for it to be in my top twenty!

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19. The Help | 2011 | PG-13

Earlier I said “The Devil Wears Prada” was my highest ranked chick-flick and I would continue to hold to that statement because The Help, although a film that would appeal more to women, has content more deep than one would normally find in a “chick-flick”. Once again, Emma Stone is perfection, this time as Skeeter, an aspiring writer looking to talk about something deeper; with the invaluable help of Minny and Aibileen, she goes attempts to do just that. I love this movie for how many issues it touches without being overwhelming–standing up for something you believe in, even when it’s very very scary; being bold enough to write something revolutionary; learning that people are not always what they seem; learning what real beauty is: all with depth, humor, and heart. The story is moving and encouraging and sad and quite funny! A chick flick this is not.

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(Bonus) 19. Men in Black | 1997 | PG-13

Some last minute rearranging led to have Men In Black bumped around a tad bit; it is technically now the new number 19. 😛 Anyway. Men in Black! When I put the film into my laptop, I didn’t know much about it at all except that it was very popular, but that can mean so many things when it comes to certain movies, right?! So, I went in with no expectations and was shocked to fall in love with it as the film got going. In fact, I’m mad that I didn’t get to see it sooner than I did. I’ve always liked Tommy Lee Jones but this movie made me really love Will Smith. The combination of the two actors is a match made in heaven. Besides the enjoyable science-fiction/super-secret agent elements, it was also just darn funny and exciting! Definitely stood up to the hype and was incredibly fun! So, bumped up high because of surprise elements and brilliant script, MIB is definately one of my very favorites.

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18. Despicable Me | 2010 | PG

Despicable Me; it looks like one of those cheesy kid movies, and in some ways it is. It’s also heart warming and plain freaking hilarious . The minions are pretty much the pinnacle of success when it comes to comedy and animation. I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like the minions. Steve Carrel is perfect as Gru; the accent and everything is what makes the character so great. The three girls are very lovable and they balance each other’s personalities out well. Their interaction with Gru is great. One of my favorite parts about this movie is Gru’s transition from his bad guy persona to willing father to three girls who need a dad and what he’s willing change  for them. Considering I’ve seen my own dad choose things over me, these moments in the film are very touching to me, especially near the end. So, packing a punch to funny bone and heartstrings, Despicable Me is one of the best non-Disney movies in my book!

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17.  Iron Man | 2008 | PG-13

(I swear foreign posters are always the coolest–I had to use at least one! :P) The beginning of the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise, Iron Man is still one of the best superhero movies I’ve ever seen. What a strong start! Tony Stark’s origin as a playboy genius turned terrorist fighter is rendered beautifully in this film. Tony Stark is one of my very favorite heroes because his journey towards heroism is gradual but real. I still consider Tony Stark one of my top ten favorite fictional heroes ever. Iron Man also introduced one of my favorite female characters from comic book origin, Pepper Potts. Pepper and her relationship with Tony is set perfectly in the first film and developed well throughout the Iron Man movies. I’m always grateful that the relationship was not rushed within this particular film as it kept it realistic and more lovable. Besides the AMAZING soundtrack, humor and heart, Iron Man is a fantastic superhero movie that begins one of my favorite franchises perfectly.

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16. Iron Man 3 | 2013 | PG-13

In which Tony Stark continues to get even more awesome! This was the perfect place to pick up right after The Avengers and it was also just a great continuation of Tony Stark’s story. The Tony in Iron Man 3 is way more sensitive and mature than the Tony in the first Iron Man. This is what continually reminds me that Tony is one of my favorite heroes. He’s still himself while becoming more responsible and dependable, like a real hero. Besides the movie just being all around entertaining, hysterical, and engaging, I really appreciated how much raw soul we got from the characters. There nothing like a “former” bad*ss superhero now dealing with panic attacks and making more effort than ever to make his girl feel secure in their relationship–seemingly small scale things that are actually very relatable, relevant and important! As Tony becomes more and more real, the more amazing he becomes. And Pepper Potts; she was just AWESOME in this movie. Also the climatic ending of this movie is one of my ultimate favorites.

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15. Wreck-It Ralph | 2012 | PG

I’M GOING TO SAY THIS FOR THE ONE THOUSANDTH TIME. THIS IS UNDERRATED GENIUS. From the minute I saw the first trailer, I knew I would love this movie. And boy is it good. I love the video game world that was constructed–the whole world just reeks with brilliant creativity! The plot delivery is great and main characters are so lovable! However, my favorite aspect of the movie is it’s message. I saw Wreck-It Ralph during a point in my life when I really didn’t know what was “me” and what was ‘what other people wanted me to be” and it was very confusing. I was at a place where I was becoming tired of trying to please everyone, of trying to keep from stepping on toes in my Christian circles and was slightly conflicted on what my dad wanted me do/be and what I felt was right. Wreck-It Ralph was a beautiful, funny yet perfectly timed reminder that the best thing to be in life is yourself.

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14. Thor: The Dark World | 2013 | PG-13

Oh my gosh this movie was so fun. Haha, that could be the tag line: Thor The Dark World: so much fun. While I was a little worried about how they would handle post-New York Loki, Marvel was amazing and handled him and Thor beautifully. What I loved best about Thor The Dark World was how well they continued the main characters’ stories while delivering a fantastic theater experience. It. was. so. fun! Thor and Loki’s brother dynamic was explored more and that was one of my favorite parts. I do not understand the hate for Jane, I loved her in this movie and waiting for the reunion between her and Thor was also high on my list of priorities for the movie to cover. I was pleased with the result! Despite Darcy being a little over the top, I can’t come up with any complaints that I have about the movie. It was everything I wanted from the Thor sequel and easily one of the most enjoyable times for at the theater!

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13. Die Hard | 1988 | R

The action genre at it’s best. I repeat, it’s best. I’m serious, I consider this the unrivaled king of action films because it’s basically as close as you can get to perfection. Especially in this genre where 90% of recent action movies can’t seem to handle a good plot, special effects, decent humor and believable characters all at once (resulting in the characters becoming limp, thus the inevitable flop into the mud.) Die Hard delivers the opposite of that in spades. Basically, if you haven’t seen this movie yet, you need to do whatever you have to do to see it. So, besides it being perfection, why else is it so high on my list? One name: John McClane. Your every day cop pushed beyond the limits. He’s such a great character, who not only is a perfect bad*ss action hero but also goes through some fantastic character development! One of the most touching parts to me is when he realizes what he should have done differently in his struggling marriage and takes it to heart. I wish I could have seen this in real life from my own dad, but the next best is from the good heroes in the movies. That’s what I’ll always say. Yippee-ki-yay!

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12. Captain America: the Winter Soldier | 2014 | PG-13

Of all The Avenger sequels, I was most worried about this one for the sake of my favorite Avenger. I didn’t want Steve Rogers’ conservative beliefs to be changed, watered down, or compromised to “make all audiences happy.” I didn’t want Sharon Carter to be introduced right away as a love interest and loose the specialness that Steve and Peggy had had. I didn’t want Natasha’s character to be handled wrong or taken in a weird direction. Thankfully, Marvel delivered and my faith in them is now stronger than ever before. 😀 I personally was relieved that my favorite superhero wasn’t tampered with but was delighted that he and his beliefs were respected throughout the film. So, not only was it amazing sequel to The First Avenger/The Avengers, it delivered it’s own story keeping true to the heart of what Captain America actually represents. Five stars from me!

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11. The Avengers | 2012 | PG-13

The Avengers bounced up and down my list constantly, from between my top forty and top ten. It was hard finding even a temporary point for this film. It’s not like I rewatch The Avengers all the time or anything like several of the movies in my top ten. However, it has finally settled here at number eleven, and so many of you have already seen it that I shouldn’t need to go into too much explanation as to the specialness of this movie. Because even though it didn’t make my top ten, The Avengers and it’s many movies have had a beautiful impact on my life. This movie is what I consider “comic book spirit adaption” perfection. Marvel gave us something very special. It gave me something special. Superheroes in New York. Who knew it could be so funny, touching, and exciting! That’s what movies are all about.

~Jamie

Top 100 Favorite Films|30-21


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30.  Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl | 2003 | PG-13

Johnny Depp is one of my favorite actors because he is so versatile. He can play so many bizarre roles and not even look like the same person, which I consider really really neat! From Edward Scissorhands to Willy Wonka to The Mad Hatter to Tonto, he’s fantastic. But the role I love him most in is as Jack Sparrow–Captain Jack Sparrow. The Curse of the Black Pearl would be a lot lower on my list if it were not for everyone’s favorite shambling pirate Captain Jack. The movie itself is very very fun, very adventurous, full of great characters and an amazing soundtrack. But I only care for this movie so much because of Depp’s unpredictable, ever lovable Jack. (Also swashbuckling is awesome.)

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29. Shaun of the Dead | 2004 | R

The first film of my new favorite film series–The Cornetto Trilogy–this is easily one of the funniest movies I’ve seen since the beginning of 2014 (I’m actively checking out new movies.) Although I’ll be reviewing The Cornetto Trilogy in a separate post soon, I’ll speak briefly here on how this movie became an instant favorite. Shaun of the Dead won my heart in spades for the dry British wit, the empathetic main character Shaun, and the poking fun at the zombie genre while at the same time paying homage to it. Because the film delivers a balance of both dimensional characters along with it’s whacky story, the film gives emotional punches alongside it’s fun plot. This creates an overall fun yet genuine heart-felt movie experience for anyone who’s willing to try a new film flavor every once in a while.

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28. Rambo: First Blood | 1982 | R

It’s strange that I have a soft spot for this movie, especially since it’s an action packed typed movie aimed at the male audience. However, the message on the veterans is very touching, executed and delivered well in sadness and truth, even with all the gun fire, motorcycle shots, and explosions. I’m a big fan of Sylvester Stallone and he was fantastic as Rambo, a very empathetic character who’s both a bad*ss yet also emotionally and mentally damaged from war. Overall, the movie is engaging, exciting and yet respectfully sad. If only they made action movies like this these days…

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27. The Hunger Games: Catching Fire | 2013 | PG-13

THIS MOVIE WAS SO GOOD. This movie made me a Hunger Games fan! I love how even though the plot is almost the same as the first when you boil it down to a sentence or two, everything feels new and invigorated. The stakes are higher, the characters are even more damaged than before, the clothes, the arena and the country Panem is realized even better and darker than before. Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss Everdeen continues to be an amazing actress. Peeta cemented himself as one of my very favorite characters as he proved himself to be a honest to goodness true friend to Katniss by being there for her. New characters were great additions. Twists and turns in the plot were effective and surprising. The film does a great job being it’s own film while setting up for the Mockingjay Part 1. Overall, I really really love this movie, will hopefully own it someday and definitely give it credit for making me a true Hunger Games fan!

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26. Terminator 2: Judgement Day | 1991 | R

*Dun dun, dun, dun dun.* 😀 The reason this movie didn’t rank higher than the original Terminator is because I find John Connor an incredibly annoying kid. To me personally, he weighs the film down a little. However, Sarah Connor’s character development into a kick-butt take-action heroine is awesome and I liked the tables turned around with the Terminator being on Sarah’s side of the fight. The last half of the film with the explosions and constant action is also extremely exciting and awesome.

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25. The Terminator | 1984 | R

Can you hear theme song yet?! I haven’t seen this one in ages which calls for a rewatch sometime soon. Time travel and thrills are combined to create this fantastic film. The intense chase scenes are thrilling even during rewatches. Sarah Conner and Kyle Reese are great characters; I love Sarah’s roller coaster journey throughout the movie and I consider Kyle a really neat hero, especially opposite Sarah and The Terminator. Although the effects might seem outdated, I don’t find that it hurts the film at all. And forget Doctor Who, The Terminator and it’s films have some of the most confusing time paradoxes ever. However, it’s sold so well that I don’t mind a bit. And how does Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “I’ll be back” line never get old?! 😀 Overall a fantastic action thriller!

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24. The Dark Knight | 2008 | PG-13

Nolanites, don’t loose you pants, The Joker is the only reason why I love this movie and placed it so high. In fact I won’t even talk about all the plot holes and how awful Rachel Dawes’ character fell, ect ect ect ect ect. No, this movie is one of my favorites because of the malicious, the twisted, the clever, the ever hysterically dark, dark villain, The Joker. I keep it no secret that I absolutely adore The Joker as a fictional villain. Heath Ledger’s performance is amazing in this movie. He steals every single scene he’s in and it’s glorious. His purple outfit is fantastic, his perspective on life is extremely buy-able, he’s funny without necessarily cracking jokes like other versions of the Joker do, and he’s just plain awesome. But besides him, this movie is actually kinda sad…

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23. Sweeney Todd: Demon Barber of Fleet Street | 2007 | R

I myself still don’t quite understand how Sweeney Todd actually beat The Dark Knight and both Terminator movies when I ranked my list. But I just don’t like the look when it’s all said it done when I lower it either. There is something darkly wonderful about this film to me; murder, music, gritty gothic London and Johnny Depp: it all makes one very ghastly yet beautiful period horror film. If we’re not counting animated movies, this would be my highest ranked musical. The anti-hero Todd is a great main character with a story of loss and revenge that makes a great plot device. Besides Johnny Depp of course, I absolutely adore Helena Bonham Carter in this film as Mrs. Lovett and Alan Rickman as The Judge is fantastic. And artistically speaking, the movie is gorgeous with it’s sets, costumes, near B&W coloring and overall setting of dark bitter London. Overall; dark, bloody yet beautiful, Sweeney Todd: Demon Barber of Fleet Street remains one of my most favorite musicals and films and I highly doubt it will drop anytime soon.

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22. Captain America: The First Avenger | 2011 | PG-13

I will never understand the people who didn’t like this movie. In fact, people who hate Captain America are on my “do not trust” list because… that’s just scary if you hate the most lovable, gentlemanly, most heroic little guy from Brooklyn.  I absolutely love The First Avenger. I love the 1940’s setting. I love the superhero serum. Hyrda is a great villainous organization, so I love them too. I love Bucky Barnes. I love Peggy Carter. I love Howard Stark. I love the Star Spangled Man song. And I LOVE STEVE ROGERS YOU GUYS BECAUSE HE IS AMAZING. But really, you all should know this already! 😛 Browse my Captain America tags and category if you haven’t already! 😛 The First Avenger; my first superhero movie and first superhero love. Definitely belongs just below Empire Strikes Back!

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21. Empire Strikes Back | 1980 | PG

What is there left to say that hasn’t been said already? Of all the movies on my list, this movie needs the least bit of explanation about the awesomeness of it. I mean, if you are scratching your head than YOU NEED TO GO WATCH THE ORIGINAL STAR WARS TRILOGY RIGHT NOW–QUIT READING THIS AND GO DO IT NOW. … end scene.

~Jamie

Top 100 Favorite Movies|40-31


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40. Warm Bodies | 2013 | PG-13

This was my first zombie film, in fact my first real introduction to zombies and it’s funny that I even wanted to try something like it in the first place. However, I fell in love and haven’t looked back. Zombie movies are at their best when the plot is focused on the characters and not the gore factor, and movies like Warm Bodies are a testament to that. Our main character R is more than just a flesh eating corpse; he remembers the the world as it was before the infection hit and wishes he could feel again, sleep again, be alive again. The zombie apocalypse version of Romeo and Juliet is the neatest the thing, in my opinion, and the interesting plot and dear characters made the movie an instant favorite in my book. hp5final 39. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix | 2007 | PG-13

I really liked this movie. Everything just got so serious. Hardly anybody believes Harry Potter that Voldemort is back and when the Defense Against The Dark Arts sends Hogwarts a nasty teacher who won’t let any of the students learn to defend themselves, Harry begins to secretly training “Dumbledore’s Army”. Watching the Harry Potter series, this is probably the first movie where I got really invested in the thrills, characters and plot. I appreciated the growing darkness of the HP world too, with Voldemort presence, and delving into Snape’s background in connection to Harry’s parents. Harry also continued to cement himself as my favorite character as he found things that were definitely worth fighting for.
tumblr_lr27ov4jk71qal4szo1_500 38. The Sound of Music | 1965 | G

I didn’t get to watch a huge variety of movies growing up but thankfully I got to grow up with The Sound of Music.  So, I’ve been in love with Maria and the Von Trap family for as long as I can remember. It’s a wonderful musical, especially because music is a part of the plot itself. The characters actually know when their singing and I like this a lot because then it doesn’t even feel like a musical; it just feels like a long movie with music as conflicting plot piece between characters. I personally appreicate this approach when it comes to musicals.  With unforgettable songs, fantastic characters, engaging moments and a more somber ending, the film is definitely one of my favorites from my childhood. (The film is truly at it’s best with the glasses of nostalgia.)The-Hunger-Games-IMAX-poster1 37. The Hunger Games | 2012 | PG-13

I have a respect for this movie–for the franchise on a whole, in fact and I hate the fact that most people water it down to a simple love story in which you pick Team Peeta or Team Gale. The story is so much more than that. It’s about a girl who had to grow up, who cared enough about her family that she was willing to die for them. Who accidentally became the symbol of a rebellion against a wicked government. Although it wasn’t until Catching Fire that I became a sold-out fan of the franchise, I still really liked The Hunger Games. The soundtrack is fitting, the acting is great because Jennifer Lawrence is always good and the plot is not cheesy at all. Katniss is an easy hero to stand behind and support and that’s what I like about her and this movie.InceptionPoster3WBHD 36. Inception | 2010 | PG-13

This is one of those special movies that don’t come along enough; they happen and blow our minds with their inventive creativity, dimensional characters and extremely unique premises. I adore nearly everything in this movie. The actors are fantastic, especially Leonardo Dicapiro. The music is awesome because it’s Hans Zimmer and it’s very fitting. And the plot–planting information within someone’s mind–is brilliant. There is not too much I could say about Inception that hastn’t been said already except that it’s a masterpiece and a must see for anyone who considers themselves someone who likes movies. Walt-Disney-Screencaps-One-Hundred-and-One-Dalmatians-Title-Card-walt-disney-characters-32132663-4314-3162 35. 101 Dalmatians | 1961 | G

The moment I rewatched the opening credits of One Hundred and One Dalmatians, I knew this would be one of my lasting favorite Disney movies forever. The film is kinda whacky when it comes to animation style, slightly off beat from other Disney films and very, very funny. The music is unique and and bouncy like a puppy, easily one of my favorite soundtracks ever. Pongo, Perdita, Roger, Anita, Nanny and the puppies are the warmest little family ever-I absolutely love Roger and Anita’s relationship, they’re a tragically underrated Disney couple. Jasper and Horace are hysterical henchmen and easily one of the best parts. Cruella De Ville is one of the most intense yet hysterical villains to ever grace a screen. In my opinion this is a wonderfully unique Disney film and a classic that should live on with the best of the bunch. tumblr_lubi5fLKD81qfklxzo1_500 34. A Christmas Story | 1983 | PG

I know from personal experience that you will walk away from this film either loving it or hating it. But oh my gosh, do I love it! This is easily my favorite Christmas movie, hands down. It’s one of those comedies that never get old because of it’s fantastic dialogue and comedic timing.The plot is so simple-a boy wanting with all his might to get a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas–but the insight we get on your typical American family around Christmas time is dimensional and priceless. Despite the setting being in the early 1940s, the film rings true for even today because parents and children alike haven’t changed that much. As kids we all fantasize ourselves as heroes and have to deal with one or two bullies and adults today still insist that we will shoot our eyes out if one ever touched a BB gun rifle. Ralphie dreams, he wishes, he schemes, he’s both naive yet not pure innocence; it’s easy for us to cheer for him because he is us. And to me, that is what makes this Christmas comedy so beautiful.Aliens-1986-Poster 33. Aliens | 1986 | R

The first movie Alien gave us great sci-fi horror and excellent introduction a fantastic sci-fi heroine. In the sequel Aliens, we get to continue to follow our heroine Ripley as she must face these demons again. This is credited to being one of the best sequels ever made, and I would agree. Although I like Alien and Aliens about the same, I’ve set Aliens higher because I hate bad sequels and this franchise already has two other known flops, so I highly appreciate this movie. Ripley is one of my top favorite female movie heroines now; she’s smart and strong– in this film, her motherly side is also brought out when she rescues a little girl. Speaking of the little girl Newt; she’s one of the most likable, believable little actresses from the movies ever. I have so much good to say about this film and not enough space too; it’s action, it’s character motivation, it’s harsh, it’s scary, it’s smart and steady; it’s Aliens.
screenshot-med-01 32. Monsters Inc | 2001 | G

Of all of Pixar’s quite broad range of movie settings, I remember being the most impressed with Monster Inc. I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE the monster setting and the whole creative idea of Scarer’s collecting children’s screams for fuel. Little Boo’s appearance in the monster world makes for a great plot line of “put that thing back where it came from” with plenty of great suspense. However, my favorite part of the whole movie is the relationships that are between Sulley, Boo, and Mike. Oh yes, Mike, who can forget Mike; he’s easily one of the most hysterical characters created for animation–ever! You will see several more animated films on this list but Pixar films end here at number 32. It feels appropriate for this to be my highest placed Pixar; after all, I literally fall asleep every night with a stuffed version of Sully.scream_xlg 31. Scream | 1996 | R

How do I talk about Scream? It’s easily the best horror film I’ve ever seen. Most shocking and surprising opening to any movie ever. Great cast of believable, mostly likable characters. Creates the beginning of a wonderful heroine. Suspense is unbelievable. You will be guessing whodunit the entire time. It also happens to be a spoof on the horror genre and it’s done so well that you could barely tell! It has one of the best twist endings ever. Bad guy “Ghostface” will scare you EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. You will not be able to walk through your house at night without a light ever again and it’s absolutely awesome. What else do you want me to say about it? It deserves it’s cult following, it has several decent sequels (which is more than some movies can say) and delivers on the suspense and mystery big time! Two thumbs up for Scream allll the way.

~Jamie

Top 100 Favorite movies|50-41


Intro

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50. The Devil Wears Prada | 2006 | PG-13

This is one of those popular chick flicks that one hears about and at least knows that Meryl Streep rocks the movie. When I finally got around to seeing this, I instantly fell in love with the film’s vibe and characters. So far, this is the only movie where I’ve really loved Anne Hathaway as a performer, as she played Andrea perfectly! This was my first film seeing Meryl Streep and she instantly won my fanship and respect by being fantastic! Her character Miranda Priestly was such a sharp yet quiet devil; it was just a delight to watch. Overall, this isprobably one of my most favorite chick flicks because it was funny (I absolutely adore the character Emily, she was hysterical,) it followed the world of fashion in an interesting way that didn’t drive the tom boy half of me crazy, and the end message was satisfying and didn’t feel cliche.

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49. Finding Nemo | 2003 | G

My love-hate history with this movie finally won over to the love side! You would think that it being the first and only Pixar movie I saw in it’s entirety as a kid, I would have liked it right away but it took years before I was finally able to understand the film’s message. Although Nemo still annoys me, I better understand his character to the point where he doesn’t make me want to punch a hole through my bedroom wall. I also better understand Marlin and fully appreciate his journey from uptight timidity to fearless trust. The undersea setting is one of my favorites from Pixar because of how well the animation and soundtrack compliment it. Dory is one of Pixar’s best characters and her and Marlin create a hysterical duo in this film! The only thing I still don’t completely like are those gosh darn sea turtles. Just no. But otherwise, this is one of my favorite Pixar films.

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48. Toy Story 2 | 1999 | G

The Toy Story trilogy is one of the only trilogies I know where each movie is better than the last. I love everything about this movie; Woody’s Roundup Gang, Star Wars references, the introduction to Barbie, the airplane scene at the end; the movie truly left the backyard and I absolutely love how much the world scale grew! The characters are as great as before, the animation is better, the plot is fantastic and the heart of the story still rings true to childhood. This movie makes it even harder to pick a favorite character; I would probably stand for ages trying to decide between Woody and Buzz, but I will say in a lickety-split that Mr Potato Head speaks to snarky soul within me. 😉

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47. Air Force One | 1997 | R

This is one of my most favorite Harrison Ford films. He plays a fantastic United States President! The plot is fantastic, now probably overdone, but in this movie the plane takeover works great. The little twists and turns the plot takes are delivered perfectly, making the ride unforgettably thrilling. The relief from suspense to even more suspense delivered on top is perfect–plot, action and character delivery all remind me of Die Hard in a sense. The action and thriller aspects combined with international drama is great and it all delivers one very fantastic film.  This is one of those movies where I walk away feeling very proud to be an American and wishing President Marshall actually existed.

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46. The Amazing Spider-Man | 2012 | PG-13

This was my first Spider-Man movie; I got to see in theaters without any knowledge of certain deaths or character turns, ect. Now, even though I dearly love the original trilogy, this one is my favorite Spidey movie for several reasons. I loved the dark modern feel of whole film, the deeper tones of blue and red in the suit, just the overall more serious tone. I love Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone together as Peter and Gwen. Their characters’ relationship has so far lacked the never-able-to-connect feel that Peter and Mary Jane seemed to have that always frustrated me. Speaking of Andrew and Emma, they are both great in this, especially Emma. I love Gwen’s character a lot more than Mary Jane’s; she helpful to Peter’s Spider-Man and I love how science-y she is. Also this movie has my one of my favorite Stan Lee cameos. Overall, Andrew Garfield plays a great Peter Parker/Spider-Man in this, so I’m very very excited for the upcoming sequel this summer!

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45. Transformers | 2007 | PG-13

I don’t care what anyone says, I love this movie too much and very much. Shia LaBeouf plays the wonderful Sam Witckey–Sam is one of my favorite teenaged characters because he’s endearing and witty and has a normal imperfect life before getting caught up in an alien war. I love how hysterical this movie is, Sam is hilarious, his parents are hilarious; I just laugh really hard at this movie. Moving on, in regard to plot and characterization, one of my favorite parts about this movie is how the military element is actually flushed out. You know how in movies when some monster or supervillian starts destroying a city and the army shows up and they’re at risk but you don’t care? Transformers actually fixes this by getting us invested with these army men right off the bat in the beginning of themovie. I love that  they actually get us involved with the usual “background military” reinforcements! To cut down this already overly-long blurb, I’ll just say that I really love the first Transformers movie and it’s one of my favorite sci-fi films.

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44. Toy Story 3 | 2010 | G

Picking a favorite Toy Story film is hard because they’re all just SO. GOOD. However I think I’ve settled on Toy Story 3 being my favorite. It’s hard to fight the whole “Andy’s leaving for college, oh my gosh, I’m college aged and my poor toys are in the attic all alone right now, oh no” reliability the film presents. The plot is once again great, the animation easily at it’s best out of the whole trilogy and the new characters are great additions to the family (Ken and Barbie are a stand-out pair of characters and one of my favorite film couples! lol) And once again, the connection the film is able to make to it’s young adult viewers is also fantastic. There’s not much left to say that the film wraps up the trilogy well and yet again succeeds at creating another great sequel for our favorite band of toys. Alsothismoviewillmakeanyonecry.

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43. Winnie the Pooh | 2011 | G

How did Winnie the Pooh beat Toy Story 3? Well, I guess in a sense nostalgia does win in it’s own way. To go back to 2011, I was a little nervous when this movie came out because of how much I loved the original movie and original books. For Disney to revisit Pooh’s Hundred Acre Wood and not screw anything up felt like a big deal to me. But they pulled it off! Not only did the movie have a similar if not slightly updated feel to The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh, but it used some book quotes and plots that I both loved and wanted to see put into animation! That was very thrilling! Anyway, I adore this film. to. freaking. bits. The music and songs are lifting and cheerful, the characters were all revisited perfectly, the humor was as funny and decent as always, and the animation beautiful. I love how well the plot flows, how absolutely adorable Pooh is in this movie and how wonderful the overall experience is. I want another Pooh movie if they could make it just like this one.

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42. Alien | 1979 | R

Hey, hey, calling sci-fi nerdy girls like me? If you want to be introduced to the horror genre with something you already love such as sci-fi, than start out with this movie. I immediately knew I would at least like this because of the sci-fi outer space element; instead I ended up loving it! In regards to plot: you know the classic horror story “People trapped in haunted house being chased by supernatural who-knows-what”? That’s what this is except on a spaceship with an unknown alien form. 😀 Not only is the use of suspense and horror executed perfectly in this movie, it also introduces you to a fantastic female character who isn’t stupid, who’s smart and strong yet not an unbreakable wall with no emotion. Overall, I was on the edge of my seat watching this! The thrills and suspense are alone worth the time to watch, at least if you are interested in that type of movie.

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41. The Prince of Egypt | 1998 | PG

This is pretty much an out and out review but there was so much that needed to be said that I’ve simply broken it up for y’all for easier reading. 🙂 Anyway, out of nearly all my favorite animated features, I would call this one the most epic and maybe even the most beautiful in terms of execution, heart and soul. Since I’ve eight or nine years old, this movie has stuck to my sub-conscious like a burr, coming back to haunt me. One of the biggest reasons is because of it’s unbelievable soul stirring soundtrack and musical numbers; I’m still captivated by Through Heaven’s Eyes, Deliver Us, The Plagues and When You Believe; the neat thing is, is that all the songs in this movie serve to move the plot forward instead of putting the plot on pause. To me, these songs can stand their ground up against anything Disney has to offer.

For an animated movie, the film treads on a darker side with only a few slightly amusing characters and moments sprinkled throughout a rather serious film, which I strongly appreciate. The film’s style of sweeping grandeur yet gritty backdrops of Egypt are some of the best I’ve ever seen when it comes to the animated mood and setting for the epic tale of Moses.Even though I grew up with and still love Charlton Heston’s The Ten Commandments, The Prince of Egypt is hands down my favorite adaption of the Exodus story. Through the dimensional leading characters, songs, and classic twisting moments of Moses’s life, the film brings out the Biblical tale without making the well known story boring. This includes the elements of brotherly love and loss, tragedy and triumph, and the full awesomeness of God’s deliverance of His people from slavery. I’m sure this movie will keep my heart captured for many more years and it is only topped by a few other animated films on this list.

~Jamie