Favoritest Movies of 1989

Using Paired Comparison Analysis, I'm ranking every movie I've ever seen, year by year; the top 80th percentile from each year advance to the decade round, and from there the all time round.

This is not a statement of quality, other than the only quality entertainment can have is how entertaining it is. Sometimes you like a bad, poorly written movie more than a masterpiece. We all do this; The most recent an Academy Award for Best Picture was the highest grossing movie of the year was 2003 (1997, 1994, 1988, 1979, & 1976 in my lifetime...)
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1.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
When Dr. Henry Jones Sr. suddenly goes missing while pursuing the Holy Grail, eminent archaeologist Indiana Jones must follow in his father's footsteps and stop the Nazis. (127 mins.)
 
2.
Henry V (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
In the midst of the Hundred Years' War in 1415, the young King Henry V of England embarks on the conquest of France. (137 mins.)
Director: Kenneth Branagh
 
3.
The Abyss (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A civilian diving team is enlisted to search for a lost nuclear submarine and face danger while encountering an alien aquatic species. (145 mins.)
Director: James Cameron
 
4.
Back to the Future Part II (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
After visiting 2015, Marty McFly must repeat his visit to 1955 to prevent disastrous changes to 1985...without interfering with his first trip. (108 mins.)
Director: Robert Zemeckis
 
5.
Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  
Captain Kirk and his crew must deal with Mr. Spock's long-lost half-brother who hijacks the Enterprise for an obsessive search for God at the center of the galaxy. (107 mins.)
Director: William Shatner
 
6.
Batman (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
The Dark Knight of Gotham City begins his war on crime with his first major enemy being the clownishly homicidal Joker. (126 mins.)
Director: Tim Burton
 
7.
Field of Dreams (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
An Iowa corn farmer, hearing voices, interprets them as a command to build a baseball diamond in his fields; he does, and the Chicago White Sox come. (107 mins.)
 
8.
Lethal Weapon 2 (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Riggs and Murtaugh are on the trail of South African diplomats who are using their immunity to engage in criminal activities. (114 mins.)
Director: Richard Donner
 
9.
Fat Man and Little Boy (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
This film reenacts the Manhattan Project, the secret wartime project in New Mexico where the first atomic bombs were designed and built. (127 mins.)
Director: Roland Joffé
 
10.
Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
Two seemingly dumb teens struggle to prepare a historical presentation with the help of a time machine. (90 mins.)
Director: Stephen Herek
 
11.
Kiki's Delivery Service (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A young witch, on her mandatory year of independent life, finds fitting into a new community difficult while she supports herself by running an air courier service. (103 mins.)
Director: Hayao Miyazaki
 
12.
Major League (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
The new owner of the Cleveland Indians puts together a purposely horrible team so they'll lose and she can move the team. But when the plot is uncovered, they start winning just to spite her. (107 mins.)
Director: David Ward
 
13.
The Little Mermaid (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A mermaid princess makes a Faustian bargain with an unscrupulous sea-witch in order to meet a human prince on land. (83 mins.)
 
14.
Godzilla vs. Biollante (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
After rising from his volcanic grave, Godzilla is threatened by a mutated rosebush. (104 mins.)
Director: Kazuki Ohmori
 
15.
Arena (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
A human becomes an unlikely rising star in the biggest fighting tournament in the galaxy that's dominated by alien species. (115 mins.)
Director: Peter Manoogian
“ Seriously, no poster... :( ” - Tincage
 
16.
Always (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
A romantic adventure about a legendary pilot's passion for dare-devil firefighting and his girl. (122 mins.)
 
17.
The War of the Roses (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A married couple try everything to get each other to leave the house in a vicious divorce battle. (116 mins.)
Director: Danny DeVito
 
18.
UHF (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A local public station gets a new owner. The station becomes a hit, with all sorts of hilarious sight gags and wacky humor. (97 mins.)
Director: Jay Levey
 
19.
The Fly II (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  
The almost-human son of "Brundlefly" searches for a cure to his mutated genes while being monitored by a nefarious corporation that wishes to continue his father's experiments. (105 mins.)
Director: Chris Walas
 
20.
Black Rain (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Two NYC cops arrest a Yakuza member and must escort him when he's extradited to Japan. (125 mins.)
Director: Ridley Scott
 
21.
Ghostbusters II (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
The discovery of a massive river of ectoplasm and a resurgence of spectral activity allows the staff of Ghostbusters to revive the business. (108 mins.)
Director: Ivan Reitman
 
22.
Glory (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Robert Gould Shaw leads the US Civil War's first all-black volunteer company, fighting prejudices of both his own Union army and the Confederates. (122 mins.)
Director: Edward Zwick
 
23.
Road House (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
A tough bouncer is hired to tame a dirty bar. (114 mins.)
 
24.
Tango & Cash (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Two cops are framed and must clear their names. (104 mins.)
 
25.
Babar: The Movie (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
In his spectacular film debut, young Babar, King of the Elephants, must save his homeland from certain destruction by Rataxes and his band of invading rhinos. (70 mins.)
Director: Alan Bunce
 
26.
Licence to Kill (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
James Bond goes rogue and sets off to unleash vengeance on a drug lord who tortured his best friend, a C.I.A. agent, and left him for dead and murdered his bride after he helped capture him. (133 mins.)
Director: John Glen
 
27.
Heathers (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
In order to get out of the snobby clique that is destroying her good-girl reputation, an intelligent teen teams up with a dark sociopath in a plot to kill the cool kids. (103 mins.)
Director: Michael Lehmann
 
28.
When Harry Met Sally... (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Harry and Sally have known each other for years, and are very good friends, but they fear sex would ruin the friendship. (96 mins.)
Director: Rob Reiner
 
29.
Weekend at Bernie's (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
Two losers try to pretend that their murdered employer is really alive, leading the hitman to attempt to track him down to finish him off. (97 mins.)
Director: Ted Kotcheff
 
30.
The Karate Kid Part III (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
Ostracised villain John Kreese attempts to gain revenge on Daniel and Miyagi, with the help of a Vietnam War comrade, the wealthy owner of a toxic waste disposal business. (112 mins.)
 
31.
The Experts (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.6/10 X  
Travis and Wendell are kidnapped while on their way to opening a nightclub in rural Nebraska. The KGB spy Cameron Smith takes them to the U.S.S.R... (94 mins.)
Director: Dave Thomas
“ Rewatched recently on Netflix. There was some point when I learned what a mullet was. When I saw this movie originally, A) I was ignorant of hairstyles having names B) The mullet was ubiquitous. Only upon rewatching this movie did I realize Travolta had a mullet. ” - Tincage
 
32.
Police Academy 6: City Under Siege (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.1/10 X  
Those bumbling cadets take to the streets when three inept goons successfully orchestrate a metropolitan crime wave. (84 mins.)
Director: Peter Bonerz
“ I saw this at a General Cinema on Watson with my grandmother. ” - Tincage
 
33.
Great Balls of Fire! (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
The life and career of wildly controversial rock 'n' roll star Jerry Lee Lewis. (108 mins.)
Director: Jim McBride
 
34.
Dead Poets Society (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
English teacher John Keating inspires his students to look at poetry with a different perspective of authentic knowledge and feelings. (128 mins.)
Director: Peter Weir
 
35.
Chances Are (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
This is a fiercely tender, sparkly sleeper gem, with stellar cast, about spirituality, the unconditional nature of the soul mate, loyalty and love and an alternate view to death. (108 mins.)
Director: Emile Ardolino
 
36.
Hard to Kill (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
Mason Storm, a 'do it alone' cop, is gunned down at home. The intruders kill his wife, and think they've killed both Mason and his son too... (96 mins.)
Director: Bruce Malmuth
 
37.
The Dream Team (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
On the way to a baseball game, sanitarium patients get stranded in New York City after their chaperone is hospitalized and they're being pursued by criminals. (113 mins.)
Director: Howard Zieff
 
38.
She's Out of Control (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.3/10 X  
When an average-looking teenage girl gets a makeover, it's enough to turn make her father become overprotective of her. (90 mins.)
Director: Stan Dragoti
 
39.
Look Who's Talking (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
After a single, career-minded woman is left on her own to give birth to the child of a married man, she finds a new romantic chance in a cab driver. Meanwhile, the point-of-view of the newborn boy is narrated through voice-over. (93 mins.)
Director: Amy Heckerling
 
40.
Driving Miss Daisy (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
An old Jewish woman and her African-American chauffeur in the American South have a relationship that grows and improves over the years. (99 mins.)
Director: Bruce Beresford
 
41.
Gross Anatomy (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A smart first-year med student takes nothing seriously, except the pursuit of his Gross Anatomy (human dissection) lab partner... (109 mins.)
Director: Thom Eberhardt
 
42.
Say Anything... (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A noble underachiever and a beautiful valedictorian fall in love the summer before she goes off to college. (100 mins.)
Director: Cameron Crowe
 
43.
Leviathan (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
An American deep-sea mining colony stumbles upon a sunken Soviet vessel hiding a horrific secret. (98 mins.)
 
44.
Dream a Little Dream (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
An accident puts the consciousness of an elderly dream researcher into the body of a bratty teenager. The problem? The kid prefers dreamworld limbo to real life. (114 mins.)
Director: Marc Rocco
 
45.
Lean on Me (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
The dedicated but tyrannical Joe Clark is appointed the principal of a decaying inner-city school that he is determined to improve. (108 mins.)
 
46.
Cyborg (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
A martial artist hunts a killer in a plague-infested urban dump of the future. (86 mins.)
Director: Albert Pyun
 
47.
Parenthood (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
The Buckmans are a midwestern family all dealing with their lives: estranged relatives, raising children, pressures of the job, and learning to be a good parent and spouse. (124 mins.)
Director: Ron Howard
 
48.
Turner & Hooch (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
A detective must adopt the dog of a dead man to help him find the murderer. (97 mins.)
 
49.
Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
The scientist father of a teenage girl and boy accidentally shrinks his and two other neighborhood teens to the size of insects. Now the teens must fight diminutive dangers as the father searches for them. (93 mins.)
Director: Joe Johnston
 
50.
Skin Deep (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A womanizing, drunken, allelic writer, whose life seems to be falling apart at the seams, repeatedly finds himself in trouble of one sort or another with the law, ex-girlfriends, and jealous boyfriends. (97 mins.)
Director: Blake Edwards
 
51.
Troop Beverly Hills (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
As Phyllis, a Beverly Hills housewife, is in the middle of a divorce, she tries to find focus in her... (105 mins.)
Director: Jeff Kanew
 
52.
Blaze (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
A middle-aged Louisiana governor falls in love with a young stripper, which jeopardizes his political career and the radical policies which have made him a controversial figure. (120 mins.)
Director: Ron Shelton
 
53.
Her Alibi (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
A writer of BAD detective novels is in full writers' block. He pretends to be the alibi of a beautiful... (94 mins.)
Director: Bruce Beresford
 
54.
The 'Burbs (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
An overstressed suburbanite and two of his neighbors struggle to prove their paranoid theory that the new family on the block are part of a murderous cult. (101 mins.)
Director: Joe Dante
 
55.
The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Frank and Jack Baker are professional musicians who play in small clubs. They perform cover tunes of music standards and have never needed a day job... (114 mins.)
Director: Steve Kloves
 
56.
Dead Calm (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
After a tragedy, John Ingram and his wife Rae spend some time isolated at sea when they come across a stranger who has abandoned a sinking ship. (96 mins.)
Director: Phillip Noyce
 
57.
Best of the Best (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
A team from the United States is going to compete against Korea in a Tae Kwon Do tournament. The team consists of fighters from all over the country--can they overcome their rivalry and work together to win? (97 mins.)
Director: Bob Radler
 
58.
Uncle Buck (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Bachelor and all round slob, Buck, babysits his brother's rebellious teenage daughter and her cute younger brother and sister. (100 mins.)
Director: John Hughes
 
59.
How to Get Ahead in Advertising (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Dennis Dimbleby Bagley is a brilliant young advertising executive who can't come up with a slogan to sell a revolutionary new pimple cream... (90 mins.)
Director: Bruce Robinson
 
60.
K-9 (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
To stop an elusive criminal, a maverick detective enlists the aid of a police dog who's an unusually intelligent smart alec. (101 mins.)
Director: Rod Daniel
 
61.
Pink Cadillac (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Skip tracer Tommy Nowak is tracking Lou Ann McGuinn for a bail bondsman in California. Lou Ann is also... (122 mins.)
Director: Buddy Van Horn
 
62.
The Wizard (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
A boy and his brother run away from home and hitch cross country with the help of a girl they meet to compete in the ultimate video game championship. (96 mins.)
Director: Todd Holland
 
63.
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
The Griswold family's plans for a big family Christmas predictably turn into a big disaster. (97 mins.)
 
64.
The Punisher (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
When Frank Castle's family is murdered by criminals, he wages war on crime as a vigilante assassin known only as the Punisher. (89 mins.)
Director: Mark Goldblatt
 
65.
Do the Right Thing (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
On the hottest day of the year on a street in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn, everyone's hate and bigotry smolders and builds until it explodes into violence. (120 mins.)
Director: Spike Lee
 
66.
Sex, Lies, and Videotape (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A sexually repressed woman's husband is having an affair with her sister. The arrival of a visitor with a rather unusual fetish changes everything. (100 mins.)
 
67.
Steel Magnolias (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A young beautician, newly arrived in a small Louisiana town, finds work at the local salon, where a small group of women share a close bond of friendship and welcome her into the fold. (117 mins.)
Director: Herbert Ross
 
68.
A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.1/10 X  
The pregnant Alice finds Freddy Krueger striking through the sleeping mind of her unborn child, hoping to be reborn into the real world. (89 mins.)
Director: Stephen Hopkins
 
69.
Night Game (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  
A police detective tracks a serial killer who is stalking young women on a beach front after each game that a baseball pitcher wins. (95 mins.)
Director: Peter Masterson
 
70.
Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.5/10 X  
A boat of graduating high school students bound for Manhattan pulls Jason Voorhees along for the ride. Look out, New York - here comes Hell in a hockey mask. (100 mins.)
Director: Rob Hedden
 
71.
Pet Sematary (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Behind a young family's home in Maine is a terrible secret that holds the power of life after death. When tragedy strikes, the threat of that power soon becomes undeniable. (103 mins.)
Director: Mary Lambert
 
72.
Roger & Me (1989 Documentary)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Director Michael Moore pursues GM CEO Roger Smith to confront him about the harm he did to Flint, Michigan with his massive downsizing. (91 mins.)
Director: Michael Moore
 
73.
Worth Winning (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Taylor is a man who has no problems with women. So confident is he that he accepts a challenge from... (103 mins.)
Director: Will Mackenzie
 
74.
All Dogs Go to Heaven (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
A dog returns from the dead looking for revenge on his killer using an orphan girl who can talk to animals. (84 mins.)
 
75.
DeepStar Six (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
At the bottom of the ocean, the DeepStar Six has just discovered a new and deadly alien menace. (105 mins.)
 
76.
Kickboxer (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Kurt Sloane must learn the ancient kick boxing art of Muay Thai in order to avenge his brother. (97 mins.)
 
77.
Three Fugitives (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
On his first day after being released from jail for 14 armed bank robberies, Lucas finds himself caught up in someone else's robbery... (96 mins.)
Director: Francis Veber
 
78.
Fletch Lives (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
After receiving an inheritance in Louisiana, LA reporter Irvin Fletcher heads to the Belle Isle plantation where he gets himself into hilarious trouble. (95 mins.)
Director: Michael Ritchie
 
79.
Red Scorpion (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.0/10 X  
An elite Special Forces operative is chosen to assassinate an anti-Communist rebel leader, but defects after witnessing the brutality of his comrades, leading the resistance against their oppressors. (105 mins.)
Director: Joseph Zito
 
80.
Dead Bang (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
A cop is gunned down on Xmas eve. Jerry Beck, the homicide cop given the job of hunting the killer,... (102 mins.)
 
81.
Lock Up (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
With only 6 months left of his prison sentence inmate Frank Leone is transferred from minimum security to maximum security by a vindictive warden. (109 mins.)
Director: John Flynn
 
82.
An Innocent Man (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Jimmie Rainwood was minding his own business when two corrupt police officers (getting an address wrong) burst into his house... (113 mins.)
Director: Peter Yates
 
83.
Sea of Love (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A detective investigating a series of murders becomes involved with a woman who may be the culprit. (113 mins.)
Director: Harold Becker
 
84.
Born on the Fourth of July (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
The biography of Ron Kovic. Paralyzed in the Vietnam war, he becomes an anti-war and pro-human rights political activist after feeling betrayed by the country he fought for. (145 mins.)
Director: Oliver Stone
 
85.
Casualties of War (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
During the Vietnam War, a soldier finds himself the outsider of his own squad when they unnecessarily kidnap a female villager. (113 mins.)
Director: Brian DePalma
 
86.
The January Man (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
Nick and Frank Starkey were both policemen. A scandal forced Nick to leave the force, now a serial killer has driven the police to take him back... (97 mins.)
Director: Pat O'Connor