Tuesday, July 29, 2008

NORMAL is back! and Top Ten Movies

by Christopher Reardon (with contributions from Matthew Jupin and Matthew Reardon)

Well it's been a while friends, but NORMAL Blogazine is back in action and better than ever. In order to celebrate our grand reopening, the NORMAL editors and myself have done the impossible. The unthinkable. The unimaginable. We've put together top ten lists of our favorite movies of all time. Now I don't know about you but I love movies and I personally thought I could never put together such a list, but it's done and I'm pretty happy with the results. If you can brave the sacrifice and tears it takes to shun some of your favorites in order to make a list of just ten movies, please show us the results in the comments section. Now onto the show.

Christopher Reardon's Top Ten Movie's of All Time:

10. Fargo (1996) - I've long been a fan of the Coen brothers', and behind the Academy Award winning performance of Frances McDormand as Marge Gunderson, this movie tops my list for the sibling filmmakers. In my experience people either loved or hated this movie, but I can't understand why anyone wouldn't want Margie to be their friend as much as I do, and the almost thrilling detective story is no slouch either.

9. Juno (2007) - As a huge fan of the short-lived TV show Arrested Development, I almost flipped when I learned that stars Jason Bateman and Michael Cera would be in a movie together. After the disappointment I felt when I realized they didn't even have any scenes together, I realized that it didn't matter because the aptly named movie is all about one thing: Juno. Ellen Page stole the show and my heart as a pregnant teenager and the lovesick back story is sweet enough to make Lucille Bluth smile. Oh yeah, the soundtrack is pretty amazing, too.

8. Rent (2005) - Ask Kelly, my best friend and upstairs neighbor in college, how much I loved this movie and she'll probably groan about having to hear me sing the soundtrack at the top of my lungs from all the way upstairs. It's her own fault though, because she's the one who introduced me to this masterpiece. Any movie thats inspires me to laugh, cry, sing, dance, and scream in anger (when a fire drill interrupted my third viewing) deserves to make this list. I've yet to see the broadway show, but I'm kind of afraid to because I'm worried it won't live up to its Hollywood counterpart. By the way, the screenplay was written by Perks of Being a Wallflower author Stephen Chbosky, a definite favorite of mine.

7. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) - My friends and I can sit around and quote this movie for hours if necessary. I mean, come on: "We want... A SHRUBBERY!" or "There are some who call me... Tim." Hell, I even have a t-shirt that says "I fart in your general direction!" Something about mindless humor that takes a genius to write really appeals to me, which is why The Holy Grail makes this list. If you haven't seen it, do yourself a favor and rent it as soon as possible.

6. Beautiful Thing (1996) - There was a two-month period of my life in college in which I watched this movie every single day, often multiple times per day. Granted, my love for British movies is pretty well known, but this movie so far surpasses the British appeal as to have something to offer to every single gay youth and many heteros throughout the world. The story of Jamie and Ste's love for each other is so simple and so heart-wrenching that one just can't look away. The soundtrack is almost 100% Mama Cass, which never appealed to me before watching but which is now a mainstay of my iPod library. Brokeback Mountain has nothing on this gay love story.

5. Superbad ( 2007) - Michael Cera makes the list again, and with good reason. Superbad is so funny, so classic, so quotable as to belong in any top ten comedy list. My love for fat kids, bad singing, and homo erotic buddy flicks puts it in my top ten of all time list. Not only is Superbad written well, but the design of the movie (especially the costume design) is fantastic. When Evan warns the girl of his dreams to be careful with his vintage sweater because it has sentimental value to him, I suddenly understood the whole concept of this movie: vintage comedy with a modern twist that has something in it for everyone. I could watch this movie every day and not get sick of it, and you should too.

4. The Dark Knight (2008) - It's a good thing they decided to take the name "Batman" out of the title of this movie, because it's really not about Batman at all. The Dark Knight is all about the Joker. At once the scariest, funniest, most surreal and yet most human of all movie villains I've ever watched, and I could never take my eyes off of him. What a way to leave the world, Heath Ledger, and trust me there will never be another Joker like yours. Besides Ledger's huge performance, The Dark Knight is a thrilling action movie that everyone in the world should go see. Now. Why are you reading this? GO SEE THE DARK KNIGHT NOW!

3. Silence of the Lambs (1991) - As a kid I hid in the hallway while my family watched this movie because I was so scared. As an adult I can hardly take my eyes off of it. Hannibal Lecter goes down as one of the best movie villains of all time, and Clarice Starling as one of the best not-so-helpless heroines. Meanwhile, while Hannibal plays on the human side of villain-dome, "Buffalo Bill" Gumb plays with the anti-human, totally psychotic side. It's scary but fascinating. If you love a thriller (and I do), then this movie is definitely tops in the genre.

2. The Shawshank Redemption (1994) - Tim Robbins and Morgan Freeman put together possibly their greatest performances of all time in this instant classic. A prison movie is a prison movie, but "The Shank" is the second best movie ever. An epic story with human characters, clever twists, and one of the most cathartic escape scenes ever. It's so cool, so touching, so unforgettable as to make everyone who sees it a fan. Even if you hate prison movies this one has something to offer for you.

And Christopher Reardon's Number One Movie of All Time is...

1. Little Miss Sunshine (2006) - The first time I saw this movie I said to myself (and everyone around me) "That was my favorite movie of all time" and I have yet to sway from that stance. Though the rest of this list was agonizing to organize, I never had a question about what number one would be. In putting this list together I have come to realize my love for charming female leads (see: Juno, Fargo), but Little Miss Sunshine is about so much more than the Academy Award nominated performance of Abigail Breslin. While Juno would have fallen apart without Ellen Page as the lead role, Little Miss Sunshine would never have survived in the absence of any single member of the Hoover family. It's rare for an ensemble comedy to be so singularly touching, but Little Miss Sunshine succeeds with gusto. If you haven't seen this movie, it's in your best interest to go see it now. Because I will punch you in the face if you don't.

Honorable Mentions:

Most Quotable - Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006)
Best Classic - Cool Hand Luke (1967)
Best Family Movie - Finding Nemo (2003)
Best Action Movie - 300 (2006)
Most Fantastic - Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
Others - Hot Fuzz, 28 Days Later, Pulp Fiction, Memento

Matthew Reardon's Top Ten Movies of All Time:

10. Tommy Boy (1995)
9. Super Troopers (2001)
8. Rambo: First Blood (1982)
7. The Dark Knight (2008)
6. Silence of the Lambs (1991)
5. Pulp Fiction (1994)
4. Goodfellas (1990)
3. American History X (1998)
2. Shawshank Redemption (1994)
1. Forrest Gump (1994)

Matthew Jupin's Top Ten Movies of All Time:

10. Airplane (1980)
9. Forrest Gump (1994)
8. Training Day (2001)
7. Seven (no pun intended) (1995)
6. The Departed (2006)
5. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006)
4. Braveheart (1995)
3. Pulp Fiction (1994)
2. The Dark Knight (2008)
1. The Godfather (Part One) (1972)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i am not seeing jurassic park 3 anywhere on these lists.