Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The Favorite Films Of My Lifetime: 1988

1988 wasn't 1987 tough to make cuts, but there were some omissions I was sad not to be talking about with my 6 film limit.  I know the next year will be a big one too, so its pretty telling there was great run of films in the movie industry from 1987-1989.  Or maybe...I was just soaking in and paying attention to more movies at the time (likely a big factor).  I've also noticed Tom Cruise has been in big movie after big movie, but none of them have yet to show up on my lists (No, I am not a Top Gun fan, sorry).  So, alas, another day, another year another list of 6 movies!

Here's the Oscar 'Best Picture' scenario from 1988

WINNER - Rain Man
The Accidental Tourist
Dangerous Liasons
Mississippi Burning
Working Girl

And now my '88


When I was little, I didn't know whether to laugh at this film or be spooked by it.  It was this crazy little fantasy and there was absolutely nothing like it at the time.  Tim Burton had down Pee Wee's Big Adventure prior, but this is where he truly opened up to us.  Its crazy to think that this landed him Batman.  This film still holds up remarkable and is just a oozing with fun artistry and creativity.  Michael Keaton is absolutely king in this role and ultimately this is what had fanboys going batshit crazy over his casting as the caped crusader.  I was too young to care at the time, but I don't get in a tissy over casting even now anyways...I wait to see the final product before I sit and presume the worst (its not worth the negativity and the fretting).  Anyway!  Beetlejuice is awesome and also introduced us to every young guy in the 90s supercrush Winona Ryder.

The Dead Pool

Dirty Harry's final case is also his most fun.  This one goes a little bit lighter in its approach, tossing away some of the grit, and goes for a more popcorn movie approach, but still maintains the integrity of the series.  I discussed this one a little over a year ago (HERE) in what was I think my least popular retrospective of all time (sob sob).  At the time they weren't aware, but they actually had a pretty all star cast formed for Dirty Harry's big finale.  It also sports Liam Neeson, Patricia Clarkson and Jim Carrey.  It might not be the best or my favorite Dirty Harry film, but its the one I may grab for first if I'm wanting to kick back relax and watch some Callahan.

Die Hard

Easiest pick of the bunch.  I love this franchise, I love this movie and you can read all about why HERE.

Halloween 4: The Return Of Michael Myers

This might be an easy year as far as me typing.  HERE.  This is one of my very favorite slashers of the 1980s and I'm extremely biased, nostalgic and blind to the faults of this movie.  I find it to be a lot of fun and delivers in some scares and gore too.  It also is one of those time capsule movies that reminds me of and gives me a fondness for times that have gone by.  I really think Dwight Little's film captures the fall feel in the midwest despite filming it in Utah.  Its one I pop in every year and there was absolutely no keeping it off of this list.

The Naked Gun: From The Files Of 'Police Squad!'

I was a big fan of the television series from which this came.  And yes, there's a lot of jokes repeated here, but damn, its still freakin' hilarious.  Leslie Nielson as Frank Drebin is one of the all time great straight man comedic roles of all time.  Leslie was also one of the greatest comedy actors ever as well.  So good, it makes it awkward watching him in serious roles like Prom Night.  This is also still when the Zuckers were at the top of their game.  Each one of the movies in this series had me crying in theaters.  I've got nothing but positive thoughts here.

John Carpenter's They Live

Roddy Piper delivers a B-movie performance from the ages as John Carpenter displays his disdain for consumerism, love for wrestling and fear of invasion in one fell swoop.  This movie has got a lot of great one-liners from Piper ("I have came here to chew bubble gum and kick ass.  And I'm all out of bubble gum.") and a ridiculous fight scene with Keith David that is a full-on hammed up wrestling match.  This one of those "ultimate John Carpenter" movies too, where if you could describe his oeuvre with one movie, this one should be in reaching distance.

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