1996

by qag001 | created - 19 Jan 2012 | updated - 19 Jan 2012 | Public

Ranking the films of 1996

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1. Fargo (1996)

R | 98 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

85 Metascore

Jerry Lundegaard's inept crime falls apart due to his and his henchmen's bungling and the persistent police work of the quite pregnant Marge Gunderson.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare

Votes: 525,623 | Gross: $24.61M

2. Jerry Maguire (1996)

R | 139 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

77 Metascore

When a sports agent has a moral epiphany and is fired for expressing it, he decides to put his new philosophy to the test as an independent agent with the only athlete who stays with him and his former secretary.

Director: Cameron Crowe | Stars: Tom Cruise, Cuba Gooding Jr., Renée Zellweger, Kelly Preston

Votes: 210,130 | Gross: $153.95M

3. Bound (1996)

R | 108 min | Crime, Romance, Thriller

61 Metascore

Corky, a tough female ex con and her lover Violet concoct a scheme to steal millions of stashed mob money and pin the blame on Violet's crooked boyfriend Caesar.

Directors: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski | Stars: Jennifer Tilly, Gina Gershon, Joe Pantoliano, John P. Ryan

Votes: 44,749 | Gross: $3.80M

4. Scream (1996)

R | 111 min | Horror, Mystery

65 Metascore

A year after the murder of her mother, a teenage girl is terrorized by a new killer, who targets the girl and her friends by using horror films as part of a deadly game.

Director: Wes Craven | Stars: Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, David Arquette, Skeet Ulrich

Votes: 246,036 | Gross: $103.05M

5. Primal Fear (1996)

R | 129 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

47 Metascore

An altar boy is accused of murdering a priest, and the truth is buried several layers deep.

Director: Gregory Hoblit | Stars: Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Edward Norton, John Mahoney

Votes: 150,266 | Gross: $56.12M

6. Kingpin (1996)

PG-13 | 113 min | Comedy, Sport

43 Metascore

A star bowler whose career was prematurely "cut off" hopes to ride a new prodigy to success and riches.

Directors: Bobby Farrelly, Peter Farrelly | Stars: Woody Harrelson, Randy Quaid, Bill Murray, Vanessa Angel

Votes: 68,795 | Gross: $24.94M

7. Trainspotting (1996)

R | 94 min | Drama

83 Metascore

Renton, deeply immersed in the Edinburgh drug scene, tries to clean up and get out, despite the allure of the drugs and influence of friends.

Director: Danny Boyle | Stars: Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner, Jonny Lee Miller, Kevin McKidd

Votes: 554,846 | Gross: $16.50M

8. Independence Day (1996)

PG-13 | 145 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

59 Metascore

The aliens are coming and their goal is to invade and destroy Earth. Fighting superior technology, mankind's best weapon is the will to survive.

Director: Roland Emmerich | Stars: Will Smith, Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, Mary McDonnell

Votes: 472,750 | Gross: $306.17M

9. Breaking the Waves (1996)

R | 159 min | Drama

76 Metascore

Oilman Jan is paralyzed in an accident. His wife, who prayed for his return, feels guilty; even more, when Jan urges her to have sex with another.

Director: Lars von Trier | Stars: Emily Watson, Stellan Skarsgård, Katrin Cartlidge, Jean-Marc Barr

Votes: 53,910 | Gross: $4.04M

10. Swingers (1996)

R | 96 min | Comedy, Drama

71 Metascore

Wannabe actors become regulars in the stylish neo-lounge scene; Trent teaches his friend Mike the unwritten rules of the scene.

Director: Doug Liman | Stars: Vince Vaughn, Heather Graham, Jon Favreau, Ron Livingston

Votes: 68,486 | Gross: $4.51M

11. Tin Cup (1996)

R | 135 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

60 Metascore

A washed up golf pro working at a driving range tries to qualify for the US Open in order to win the heart of his succesful rival's girlfriend.

Director: Ron Shelton | Stars: Kevin Costner, Rene Russo, Don Johnson, Cheech Marin

Votes: 41,090 | Gross: $53.85M

12. The Rock (1996)

R | 136 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller

58 Metascore

A mild-mannered chemist and an ex-con must lead the counterstrike when a rogue group of military men, led by a renegade general, threaten a nerve gas attack from Alcatraz against San Francisco.

Director: Michael Bay | Stars: Sean Connery, Nicolas Cage, Ed Harris, John Spencer

Votes: 280,476 | Gross: $134.07M

13. Eraser (1996)

R | 115 min | Action, Drama, Mystery

56 Metascore

A Witness Protection specialist becomes suspicious of his co-workers when dealing with a case involving high-tech weapons.

Director: Chuck Russell | Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Vanessa Williams, James Caan, James Coburn

Votes: 92,254 | Gross: $101.30M

14. Broken Arrow (1996)

R | 108 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller

61 Metascore

Terrorists steal nuclear warheads from the U.S. military but don't count on a pilot and park ranger spoiling their plans.

Director: John Woo | Stars: John Travolta, Christian Slater, Samantha Mathis, Delroy Lindo

Votes: 82,649 | Gross: $70.77M

15. Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood (1996)

R | 89 min | Comedy, Crime

"Don't Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking your Juice in the Hood" is a parody of several U.S. films about being in the 'Hood', for instance "Boyz n the Hood", "South Central", "... See full summary »

Director: Paris Barclay | Stars: Shawn Wayans, Marlon Wayans, Keenen Ivory Wayans, Tracey Cherelle Jones

Votes: 42,286 | Gross: $20.11M

16. Bottle Rocket (1996)

R | 91 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

66 Metascore

Three friends plan to pull off a simple robbery and go on the run.

Director: Wes Anderson | Stars: Luke Wilson, Owen Wilson, Ned Dowd, Shea Fowler

Votes: 60,644 | Gross: $0.56M

17. The People vs. Larry Flynt (1996)

R | 129 min | Biography, Drama

79 Metascore

A partially idealized and fictionalized film of the controversial pornography publisher and how he became a defender of free speech for all people.

Director: Milos Forman | Stars: Woody Harrelson, Courtney Love, Edward Norton, Brett Harrelson

Votes: 78,147 | Gross: $20.19M

18. The Arrival (1996)

PG-13 | 115 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller

56 Metascore

Zane, an astronomer, discovers intelligent alien life. But the aliens are keeping a deadly secret, and will do anything to stop Zane from learning it.

Director: David Twohy | Stars: Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Crouse, Richard Schiff, Shane

Votes: 28,382 | Gross: $14.05M

19. Eye for an Eye (1996)

R | 101 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

When the courts fail to keep behind bars the man who raped and murdered her daughter, a woman seeks her own form of justice.

Director: John Schlesinger | Stars: Sally Field, Kiefer Sutherland, Ed Harris, Olivia Burnette

Votes: 11,325 | Gross: $26.79M

20. Mission: Impossible (1996)

PG-13 | 110 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller

59 Metascore

An American agent, under false suspicion of disloyalty, must discover and expose the real spy without the help of his organization.

Director: Brian De Palma | Stars: Tom Cruise, Jon Voight, Emmanuelle Béart, Henry Czerny

Votes: 332,295 | Gross: $180.98M

21. Secrets & Lies (1996)

R | 136 min | Drama

91 Metascore

A successful black woman discovers that her birth mother is a underprivileged white woman, but the woman denies it. As emotions run high, everyone's secrets are exposed.

Director: Mike Leigh | Stars: Timothy Spall, Brenda Blethyn, Phyllis Logan, Claire Rushbrook

Votes: 31,890 | Gross: $13.42M

22. Beavis and Butt-Head Do America (1996)

PG-13 | 81 min | Animation, Adventure, Comedy

64 Metascore

The dim-witted teen duo of Beavis and Butt-Head travel across America in search of their stolen television set.

Directors: Mike Judge, Mike de Seve, Brian Mulroney, Yvette Kaplan | Stars: Mike Judge, Bruce Willis, Demi Moore, Cloris Leachman

Votes: 46,426 | Gross: $63.07M

23. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)

G | 91 min | Animation, Drama, Family

A deformed bell-ringer must assert his independence from a vicious government minister in order to help his friend, a gypsy dancer.

Directors: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise | Stars: Demi Moore, Jason Alexander, Mary Kay Bergman, Corey Burton

Votes: 118,173 | Gross: $100.14M

24. The Chamber (1996)

R | 113 min | Crime, Drama

45 Metascore

A young man fresh out of law school tries to win a reprieve for his racist grandfather who is on death row.

Director: James Foley | Stars: Chris O'Donnell, Gene Hackman, Faye Dunaway, Robert Prosky

Votes: 11,291 | Gross: $14.55M

25. Daylight (1996)

PG-13 | 114 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

Disaster in a New York tunnel as explosions collapse both ends of it. One hero tries to help the people inside find their way to safety.

Director: Rob Cohen | Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Amy Brenneman, Viggo Mortensen, Dan Hedaya

Votes: 58,276 | Gross: $33.02M

26. The Birdcage (1996)

R | 117 min | Comedy

72 Metascore

A gay cabaret owner and his drag queen companion agree to put up a false straight front so that their son can introduce them to his fiancée's right-wing moralistic parents.

Director: Mike Nichols | Stars: Robin Williams, Nathan Lane, Gene Hackman, Dianne Wiest

Votes: 68,384 | Gross: $124.06M

27. Twister (1996)

PG-13 | 113 min | Action, Adventure, Drama

68 Metascore

Bill and Jo Harding, advanced storm chasers on the brink of divorce, must join together to create an advanced weather alert system by putting themselves in the cross-hairs of extremely violent tornadoes.

Director: Jan de Bont | Stars: Helen Hunt, Bill Paxton, Cary Elwes, Jami Gertz

Votes: 155,599 | Gross: $241.72M

28. Bulletproof (1996)

R | 84 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

30 Metascore

Two criminals, Keats and Moses, end their friendship, when Keats turns out to be an undercover cop. Many years later, the two are forced to work together when Keats is assigned to protect Moses as a witness.

Director: Ernest R. Dickerson | Stars: Damon Wayans, Adam Sandler, James Caan, Jeep Swenson

Votes: 31,842 | Gross: $21.16M

29. Black Sheep (1996)

PG-13 | 87 min | Comedy

A gubernatorial candidate hires a wormy special assistant whose only job is to make sure the candidate's well-meaning but incompetent brother doesn't ruin the election.

Director: Penelope Spheeris | Stars: Chris Farley, David Spade, Tim Matheson, Christine Ebersole

Votes: 32,297 | Gross: $32.38M

30. Carpool (1996)

PG | 89 min | Comedy

15 Metascore

A man with an important business meeting finds himself having to take care of the carpool for the neighborhood school children when his wife gets sick. Stopping to get donuts for the kids, ... See full summary »

Director: Arthur Hiller | Stars: Tom Arnold, David Paymer, Rhea Perlman, Rod Steiger

Votes: 3,755 | Gross: $3.31M

31. Alaska (1996)

PG | 109 min | Adventure, Family

While searching for their missing father in the mountains of Alaska, two siblings come across a baby polar bear on the run from a pair of poachers.

Director: Fraser C. Heston | Stars: Thora Birch, Vincent Kartheiser, Dirk Benedict, Charlton Heston

Votes: 4,605 | Gross: $11.57M

32. The Cable Guy (1996)

PG-13 | 96 min | Comedy, Drama, Thriller

A lonely and disturbed cable guy raised on television just wants a new friend, but his target, a designer, rejects him, with bad consequences.

Director: Ben Stiller | Stars: Jim Carrey, Matthew Broderick, Leslie Mann, Jack Black

Votes: 134,449 | Gross: $60.24M

33. Executive Decision (1996)

R | 133 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller

62 Metascore

When terrorists seize control of an airliner, an intelligence analyst accompanies a commando unit for a midair boarding operation.

Director: Stuart Baird | Stars: Kurt Russell, Halle Berry, Steven Seagal, John Leguizamo

Votes: 44,512 | Gross: $56.57M

34. Chain Reaction (1996)

PG-13 | 107 min | Action, Drama, Sci-Fi

Two researchers in a green alternative energy project are put on the run when they are framed for murder and treason.

Director: Andrew Davis | Stars: Keanu Reeves, Morgan Freeman, Rachel Weisz, Fred Ward

Votes: 43,508 | Gross: $20.55M

35. Celtic Pride (1996)

PG-13 | 91 min | Comedy, Sport

Two over-loyal Celtic fans kidnap their opponent's star player in order to guarantee their team the championship.

Director: Tom DeCerchio | Stars: Damon Wayans, Daniel Stern, Dan Aykroyd, Gail O'Grady

Votes: 8,854 | Gross: $9.26M

36. Escape from L.A. (1996)

R | 101 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

54 Metascore

Snake Plissken is once again called in by the United States government to recover a potential doomsday device from Los Angeles, now an autonomous island where undesirables are deported.

Director: John Carpenter | Stars: Kurt Russell, Steve Buscemi, Stacy Keach, Peter Fonda

Votes: 60,474 | Gross: $25.48M

37. Ransom (1996)

R | 121 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

60 Metascore

When a multimillionaire man's son is kidnapped, he cooperates with the police at first but then turns the tables on the kidnappers when he uses the ransom money as a reward for the capture of the kidnappers.

Director: Ron Howard | Stars: Mel Gibson, Gary Sinise, Rene Russo, Brawley Nolte

Votes: 106,864 | Gross: $136.49M

38. The English Patient (1996)

R | 162 min | Drama, Romance, War

87 Metascore

At the close of WWII, a young nurse tends to a badly-burned plane crash victim. His past is shown in flashbacks, revealing an involvement in a fateful love affair.

Director: Anthony Minghella | Stars: Ralph Fiennes, Juliette Binoche, Willem Dafoe, Kristin Scott Thomas

Votes: 157,666 | Gross: $78.65M

39. DragonHeart (1996)

PG-13 | 103 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

The last dragon and a disillusioned dragonslaying knight must cooperate to stop an evil king who was given partial immortality.

Director: Rob Cohen | Stars: Dennis Quaid, Sean Connery, Dina Meyer, Pete Postlethwaite

Votes: 83,567 | Gross: $51.37M

40. Down Periscope (1996)

PG-13 | 92 min | Comedy

39 Metascore

Lt. Cmdr. Tom Dodge is assigned as Captain to the USS Stingray, an old diesel driven submarine that has seen better days. With a crew that consists only of weird guys (and a gal), he's ... See full summary »

Director: David S. Ward | Stars: Kelsey Grammer, Lauren Holly, Rob Schneider, Harry Dean Stanton

Votes: 18,532 | Gross: $25.79M

41. Eddie (1996)

PG-13 | 100 min | Comedy, Sport

Eddie is a New York limo driver and a fanatical follower of the New York Knicks professional basketball team. The team is struggling with a mediocre record when, in mid-season, "Wild Bill" ... See full summary »

Director: Steve Rash | Stars: Whoopi Goldberg, Frank Langella, Dennis Farina, Richard Jenkins

Votes: 7,994 | Gross: $31.36M

42. D3: The Mighty Ducks (1996)

PG | 104 min | Action, Comedy, Drama

The unruly team of hockey misfits grows up a bit and receives scholarships to a prestigious prep school, where they take on the snotty varsity team.

Director: Robert Lieberman | Stars: Emilio Estevez, Jeffrey Nordling, David Selby, Heidi Kling

Votes: 21,153 | Gross: $22.94M

43. 101 Dalmatians (1996)

G | 103 min | Adventure, Comedy, Crime

49 Metascore

A woman kidnaps puppies to kill them for their fur, but various animals then gang up against her and get their revenge in slapstick fashion.

Director: Stephen Herek | Stars: Glenn Close, Jeff Daniels, Joely Richardson, Joan Plowright

Votes: 85,556 | Gross: $136.19M

44. Dunston Checks In (1996)

PG | 88 min | Comedy, Adventure, Family

54 Metascore

A young boy befriends a larcenous orangutan in a luxury hotel.

Director: Ken Kwapis | Stars: Jason Alexander, Faye Dunaway, Eric Lloyd, Rupert Everett

Votes: 10,605 | Gross: $9.87M

45. The Nutty Professor (1996)

PG-13 | 95 min | Comedy, Romance, Sci-Fi

62 Metascore

Grossly overweight yet good-hearted professor Sherman Klump takes a special chemical that turns him into the slim but obnoxious Buddy Love.

Director: Tom Shadyac | Stars: Eddie Murphy, Jada Pinkett Smith, James Coburn, Larry Miller

Votes: 95,822 | Gross: $128.81M

46. Big Bully (1996)

PG | 90 min | Comedy, Thriller

A writer returns to his hometown where he faces the childhood nemesis whose life he ultimately ruined, only the bully wants to relive their painful past by torturing him once again.

Director: Steve Miner | Stars: Rick Moranis, Tom Arnold, Julianne Phillips, Carol Kane

Votes: 4,030 | Gross: $4.09M

47. The Frighteners (1996)

R | 110 min | Comedy, Fantasy, Horror

After a tragic car accident kills his wife, a man discovers he can communicate with the dead to con people. However, when a demonic spirit appears, he may be the only one who can stop it from killing the living and the dead.

Director: Peter Jackson | Stars: Michael J. Fox, Trini Alvarado, Peter Dobson, John Astin

Votes: 73,362 | Gross: $16.76M

48. From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)

R | 108 min | Action, Crime, Horror

48 Metascore

Two criminals and their hostages unknowingly seek temporary refuge in a truck stop populated by vampires, with chaotic results.

Director: Robert Rodriguez | Stars: Harvey Keitel, George Clooney, Juliette Lewis, Quentin Tarantino

Votes: 244,731 | Gross: $25.75M

49. The Ghost and the Darkness (1996)

R | 110 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller

A bridge engineer and an experienced old hunter begin a hunt for two lions after they start attacking local construction workers.

Director: Stephen Hopkins | Stars: Michael Douglas, Val Kilmer, Tom Wilkinson, John Kani

Votes: 50,065 | Gross: $38.62M