All Time Absolute Favoritesby gsmenein | created - 09 Dec 2012 | updated - 05 Jul 2016 | Public
Movies I hope my family will watch some day. Hopefully to enjoy and understand more about me than they do.
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1. 12 Angry Men (1957)
Not Rated | 96 min | Crime, Drama
A jury holdout attempts to prevent a miscarriage of justice by forcing his colleagues to reconsider the evidence.
This is my absolute favorite movie of all time. I have watched this over and over without a boring moment. The subject matter, the acting, the characters and their development, the interactions, the prejudices, the plot, the twists, the lessons, the moments of reflection. Every time I watch it I discover something else, some other thought or perception moved a bit more this way or that.
2. Inherit the Wind (1960)
Not Rated | 128 min | Biography, Drama, History
Based on a real-life case in 1925, two great lawyers argue the case for and against a science teacher accused of the crime of teaching evolution.
I guess there's a theme here as my number two and three are also court/legal related. I actually feel the heat their all suffering from in this movie. The complexities of differing opinions, ideals and prejudices and our abilities to mitigate them from the human perspective is amazing to me.
3. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
PG | 216 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama
The story of T.E. Lawrence, the English officer who successfully united and led the diverse, often warring, Arab tribes during World War I in order to fight the Turks.
Votes: 217,371 | Gross: $44.82M
4. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
Not Rated | 129 min | Crime, Drama
Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the Depression-era South, defends a black man against an undeserved rape charge, and his children against prejudice.
5. Stalag 17 (1953)
Not Rated | 120 min | Comedy, Drama, War
When two escaping American World War II prisoners are killed, the German P.O.W. camp barracks black marketeer, J.J. Sefton, is suspected of being an informer.
7. My Fair Lady (1964)
G | 170 min | Drama, Family, Musical
A misogynistic and snobbish phonetics professor agrees to a wager that he can take a flower girl and make her presentable in high society.
Votes: 73,933 | Gross: $72.00M
9. The Train (1964)
Not Rated | 133 min | Thriller, War
In 1944, a German colonel loads a train with French art treasures to send to Germany. The Resistance must stop it without damaging the cargo.
Votes: 11,433 | Gross: $7.41M
10. Secondhand Lions (2003)
PG | 109 min | Comedy, Drama, Family
A coming-of-age story about a shy, young boy sent by his irresponsible mother to spend the summer with his wealthy, eccentric uncles in Texas.
Votes: 46,277 | Gross: $41.41M
11. Doctor Zhivago (1965)
PG-13 | 197 min | Drama, Romance, War
The life of a Russian physician and poet who, although married to another, falls in love with a political activist's wife and experiences hardship during the First World War and then the October Revolution.
Votes: 60,408 | Gross: $111.72M
Just a magnificent celluloid masterpiece. The breadth & scope to the plot and the harshness that life can be.
13. Dances with Wolves (1990)
PG-13 | 181 min | Adventure, Drama, Western
Lieutenant John Dunbar, assigned to a remote western Civil War outpost, befriends wolves and Indians, making him an intolerable aberration in the military.
Votes: 204,778 | Gross: $184.21M
14. Field of Dreams (1989)
PG | 107 min | Drama, Family, Fantasy
An Iowa corn farmer, hearing voices, interprets them as a command to build a baseball diamond in his fields; he does, and the 1919 Chicago White Sox come.
Votes: 93,475 | Gross: $64.43M
15. The Bridges of Madison County (1995)
PG-13 | 135 min | Drama, Romance
Photographer Robert Kincaid wanders into the life of housewife Francesca Johnson, for four days in the 1960s.
Votes: 60,078 | Gross: $71.52M
So this is about a dimension of love combined with commitment and loyalty that I find understandable and engrossing. The movie layers, the acting, the music, the romance (I'm a sucker for the romance) the time in history, the chance meeting, the immediate knowledge of the attraction. The forbidden nature of the love but the total understanding of the duality of it. The human commitment to that love and the love of the family is so intriguing. The moment in the rain, the downpour obscuring what we know is behind each window, the yearning that you can't help but feel as she reaches for the door handle. OMG Francesca just do it! Of course she can't and she shouldn't or should she.
PG-13 | 138 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
During the Napoleonic Wars, a brash British captain pushes his ship and crew to their limits in pursuit of a formidable French war vessel around South America.
Votes: 180,565 | Gross: $93.93M
19. Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)
Not Rated | 186 min | Drama, War
In 1948, an American court in occupied Germany tries four Nazi judges for war crimes.
The holocaust has always meant something special to me and frankly I'm not sure where it came from. It isn't as easy as believing it comes from my fathers parents who were non-synagog barely observant jews. The most jewish attributes they exposed me to was the food. So that's not it.
From the first time I read about the holocaust and I'm not talking about Anne Frank it has pulled me to it. I can't watch Schindler's List for a second time because it wreaked me. Yet I've read countless books and articles on the subject.
It certainly is the inhumanity, the cruelty, the thought of how so many intelligent human beings are a twist away from not only turning their backs on mankind but only a tiny leaning from actually participating in such a horrific event.
Each story of a survivor rivets me. Each aspect of each story engrosses me. To even take a moment to try and put myself in their reality is impossible.
20. To Sir, with Love (1967)
Unrated | 105 min | Drama
Idealistic engineer-trainee and his experiences in teaching a group of rambunctious white high school students from the slums of London's East End.
Votes: 13,147 | Gross: $42.43M
21. His Girl Friday (1940)
Not Rated | 92 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A newspaper editor uses every trick in the book to keep his ace reporter ex-wife from remarrying.
It's the dialog, the delivery and that pace of the whole thing. Sure the story is great, the character actors are cool but the dialog!
22. We're No Angels (1955)
Not Rated | 106 min | Comedy, Crime, Romance
Three Devil's Island escapees hide out in the home of a kindly merchant and repay his kindness by helping him and his family out of several crises.
23. The Longest Day (1962)
G | 178 min | Action, Drama, History
The events of D-Day, told on a grand scale from both the Allied and German points of view.
Votes: 46,445 | Gross: $39.10M
The story of the greatest generation told from the actors of that generation. The overlays of what is happening at the same time in different parts of the front. The affects from the commanders to the individual participants and of course the cinematography. Knowing that is was planned out and executed with out today's cgi capabilities is jaw droopingly cool.
24. Gunga Din (1939)
Approved | 117 min | Adventure, Comedy, War
In 19th century India, three British soldiers and a native waterbearer must stop a secret mass revival of the murderous Thuggee cult before it can rampage across the land.
Just a sucker for the actors and their interplay together. The story is set in an unusual time that I don't think many people even think of anymore. The macho, commitment to a greater good and individual loyalties also calls to me.
26. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
Not Rated | 129 min | Comedy, Drama
A naive man is appointed to fill a vacancy in the United States Senate. His plans promptly collide with political corruption, but he doesn't back down.
Votes: 86,535 | Gross: $9.60M
27. Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)
Not Rated | 118 min | Comedy, Crime, Thriller
A drama critic learns on his wedding day that his beloved maiden aunts are homicidal maniacs, and that insanity runs in his family.
28. Meet John Doe (1941)
Passed | 122 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A man needing money agrees to impersonate a nonexistent person who said he'd be committing suicide as a protest, and a political movement begins.
29. Mister Roberts (1955)
Unrated | 123 min | Comedy, Drama, War
In the waning days of World War II, the United States Navy cargo ship Reluctant and her crew are stationed in the "backwater" areas of the Pacific Ocean. Trouble ensues when the crew members are granted liberty.
Votes: 13,611 | Gross: $21.20M
33. You Can't Take It with You (1938)
Not Rated | 126 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A man from a family of rich snobs becomes engaged to a woman from a good-natured but decidedly eccentric family.
34. The Last Starfighter (1984)
PG | 101 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Video game expert Alex Rogan finds himself transported to another planet after conquering The Last Starfighter video game only to find out it was just a test. He was recruited to join the team of best starfighters to defend their world from the attack.
Votes: 32,047 | Gross: $28.73M
35. Love Actually (2003)
R | 135 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Follows the lives of eight very different couples in dealing with their love lives in various loosely interrelated tales all set during a frantic month before Christmas in London, England.
Votes: 356,746 | Gross: $59.70M
36. Good Will Hunting (1997)
R | 126 min | Drama
Will Hunting, a janitor at M.I.T., has a gift for mathematics, but needs help from a psychologist to find direction in his life.
Votes: 693,352 | Gross: $138.43M
37. The Fountainhead (1949)
Approved | 114 min | Drama, Romance
An uncompromising, visionary architect struggles to maintain his integrity and individualism despite personal, professional and economic pressures to conform to popular standards.
38. Fiddler on the Roof (1971)
G | 181 min | Drama, Family, Musical
In prerevolutionary Russia, a Jewish peasant contends with marrying off three of his daughters while growing anti-Semitic sentiment threatens his village.
Votes: 32,471 | Gross: $80.50M
41. Young Frankenstein (1974)
PG | 106 min | Comedy
An American grandson of the infamous scientist, struggling to prove that he is not as insane as people believe, is invited to Transylvania, where he discovers the process that reanimates a dead body.
Votes: 125,624 | Gross: $86.30M
42. In the Heat of the Night (1967)
Not Rated | 109 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
An African American police detective is asked to investigate a murder in a racially hostile southern town.
Votes: 55,573 | Gross: $24.38M
43. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
PG | 161 min | Adventure, Drama, War
After settling his differences with a Japanese PoW camp commander, a British colonel co-operates to oversee his men's construction of a railway bridge for their captors - while oblivious to a plan by the Allies to destroy it.
Votes: 167,769 | Gross: $44.91M
44. Journey to the Center of the Earth (1959)
Approved | 132 min | Adventure, Family, Fantasy
An Edinburgh professor and assorted colleagues follow an explorer's trail down an extinct Icelandic volcano to the earth's center.
Votes: 12,844 | Gross: $10.00M
45. Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967)
Not Rated | 108 min | Comedy, Drama
A couple's attitudes are challenged when their daughter introduces them to her African American fiancé.
Votes: 32,387 | Gross: $56.70M
46. Absence of Malice (1981)
PG | 116 min | Drama, Romance, Thriller
When a prosecutor leaks a false story that a liquor warehouse owner is involved in the murder of a union head, the man's life begins to unravel.
Votes: 10,035 | Gross: $40.72M
47. Gladiator (2000)
R | 155 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
When a Roman General is betrayed, and his family murdered by an emperor's corrupt son, he comes to Rome as a gladiator to seek revenge.
Votes: 1,103,808 | Gross: $187.71M
48. The Great Escape (1963)
Not Rated | 172 min | Adventure, Drama, History
Allied prisoners of war plan for several hundred of their number to escape from a German camp during World War II.
50. The Last Samurai (2003)
R | 154 min | Action, Drama, History
An American military advisor embraces the Samurai culture he was hired to destroy after he is captured in battle.
Votes: 345,753 | Gross: $111.11M
51. Dave (1993)
PG-13 | 110 min | Comedy, Romance
To avoid a potentially explosive scandal when the U.S. President goes into a coma, an affable temp agency owner with an uncanny resemblance is put in his place.
Votes: 43,264 | Gross: $63.27M
52. The American President (1995)
PG-13 | 114 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Comedy-drama about a widowed U.S. President and a lobbyist who fall in love. It's all above-board, but "politics is perception", and sparks fly anyway.
Votes: 45,808 | Gross: $65.00M
54. The Hunt for Red October (1990)
PG | 135 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
In November 1984, the Soviet Union's best submarine captain in their newest sub violates orders and heads for the USA. Is he trying to defect or to start a war?
Votes: 154,614 | Gross: $122.01M
55. The Bucket List (2007)
PG-13 | 97 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama
Two terminally ill men escape from a cancer ward and head off on a road trip with a wish list of to-dos before they die.
Votes: 201,702 | Gross: $93.47M
56. The Incredible Mr. Limpet (1964)
Approved | 99 min | Animation, Comedy, Family
Meek and mild mannered bookkeeper Henry Limpet has few passions in life. It's mid-1941 and he would love to join the Navy but has been rated 4F. His friend George Stickle is in the Navy and... See full summary »
This was a ground breaking movie at the time. Tying together the cartoon aspects in a major motion picture. Don Knotts is not a traditional leading man yet I enjoyed his part a lot. I also think the simplicity of the plot gives me a lot to smile about. I hope to get to watch this with my grand kids because it never appealed to the kids. They always headed in another direction when they saw how silly the plot was. I guess they are just so much more mature than I was at their age. This was a fun movie worth watching and without their interest in it I would never even try to have them watch the "Ghost and Mr. Chicken" with me. Which I might add I saw in a drive-in theatre when I was 10 yrs old.
57. Music and Lyrics (2007)
PG-13 | 96 min | Comedy, Music, Romance
A washed up singer is given a couple days to compose a chart-topping hit for an aspiring teen sensation. Though he's never written a decent lyric in his life, he sparks with an offbeat younger woman with a flair for words.
Votes: 87,312 | Gross: $50.57M
It's a sappy unlikely love story with fun self-effacing plot lines, really fun music and a bunch of clever snippets to make me chuckle. True love finds a way.
58. Cyrano de Bergerac (1950)
Not Rated | 113 min | Drama, Romance
The charismatic swordsman-poet helps another woo the woman he loves in this straightforward version of the play.
Honor, defiance, intelligence, talent, and a schnozolla that keeps him from true fulfillment. Come on! Then there's the dialog, dialog, dialog. Fabulous fun!
59. Lifeboat (1944)
Not Rated | 97 min | Drama, War
Several survivors of a torpedoed ship find themselves in the same boat with one of the men who sunk it.
Story, time in the world, acting, character interplay, plot and all done on a boat set. Wow!
60. The Shootist (1976)
PG | 100 min | Drama, Romance, Western
A dying gunfighter spends his last days looking for a way to die with a minimum of pain and a maximum of dignity.
Votes: 18,685 | Gross: $5.99M
The perfect last movie for the man/actor I substituted for my actual father. John Wayne was by every measure I can think of the most influential actor/father figure in my life. I never knew that until I was in my 40s and it just struck me one day. My father wasn't in my life enough to have made much of a positive impact but John Wayne was always there during the most formative times in my life and his movies/persona NEVER let me down. Don't get me wrong. I understand he was just an actor but to me ... and I imagine a few more rudderless children, he made an important difference in our lives. Funny huh, just an actor.
61. Out of Africa (1985)
PG | 161 min | Biography, Drama, Romance
In 20th-century colonial Kenya, a Danish baroness/plantation owner has a passionate love affair with a free-spirited big-game hunter.
Votes: 58,750 | Gross: $87.10M
62. Firefly (2002–2003)
TV-14 | 44 min | Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi
Five hundred years in the future, a renegade crew aboard a small spacecraft tries to survive as they travel the unknown parts of the galaxy and evade warring factions as well as authority agents out to get them.
Just one of the most entertaining series ever devised. If you watch Serenity or any of the series and you don't get it? Well, I just don't know what to say.
65. The Dirty Dozen (1967)
Not Rated | 150 min | Action, Adventure, War
During World War II, a rebellious U.S. Army Major is assigned a dozen convicted murderers to train and lead them into a mass assassination mission of German officers.
Votes: 57,747 | Gross: $45.30M
66. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (1949)
Unrated | 103 min | Western
Captain Nathan Brittles, on the eve of retirement, takes out a last patrol to stop an impending massive Indian attack. Encumbered by women who must be evacuated, Brittles finds his mission imperiled.