My Top 10 Favorite Films of the Past

Here is a list of my favorite movies from the 70's, 80's, and 90's.
July 03, 2012
I have seen hundreds of movies so far in my entire life, but this list happens to have my favorites, specifically, the ones from the 20th century.

10. My Neighbor Totoro (1988)

In 1988, there were 2 animated movies that have been shown in Japanese theaters back-to-back. The first was Isao Takahata's uber-depressing Grave of the Fireflies, followed by this movie from Hayao Miyazaki.

It's about a little girl named Mei, her older sister Satsuki, and their father, who've moved to the countryside one summer while the girls' mother recovers in a hospital. Their home is inhabited by friendly spirits such as soot gremlins and little acorn-loving Totoros, but inside a tree, there lives Big Totoro, whom Mei makes friends with. Shortly after, Satsuki starts to see the creatures, too.

It's a great movie. It's nice and safe, the characters are friendly, and the creatures are fascinating.

9. The original Star Wars trilogy (1977 - 1983)

For the time, Star Wars was a huge phenomenon. Back in 1977, nobody expected the first movie to be such a huge hit, but it is. 3 years later, The Empire Strikes Back came out. Everybody in 1980 was shocked over the revelations of Luke and Darth Vader. 3 more years later, Return of the Jedi, considered the weakest of the trilogy, came out, but we all need a conclusion. Ever since their respective initial releases, creator George Lucas has been retooling the franchise again, and again, and again...

Well, despite the ups and downs throughout the years, it's an exciting, gripping trilogy with a huge cast of lovable characters that inspired many memes.

8. Oliver & Company (1988)

Oliver & Company is basically a dolled-up version of Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist, with the title character as a cute little kitten, who ends up helping a pack of dogs pay off their owner Fagin's debt to the evil, greedy Sykes. During a mission, Oliver ends up in the care of a lonely rich girl named Jenny.

I'm one of those few people that actually preferred this movie to its more successful competitor, The Land Before Time. I've seen both movies as a kid, but I liked Oliver & Company more because I held it so close to my heart. It also had some cool songs, most notably "Why Should I Worry", sung by Billy Joel in the character of Dodger.

7. The Secret of N.I.M.H. (1982) & An American Tail (1986)

While N.I.M.H. is considered the superior movie, I saw An American Tail when I was younger. So, it's a tie, and I'll consider AAT a #7.5.

The Secret of N.I.M.H. was based off of the 1971 book Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of N.I.M.H., and focused on Mrs. Frisby (called Mrs. Brisby in the movie), who requires the assistance of a group of rats with stellar IQs due to the eponymous institute to help her transport her house from being shredded by the farmer's tractor because her youngest son Timmy is gravely ill with pneumonia.

It's a real shame that almost NOBODY saw this on its initial theatrical release. At least, in my defense, I was born 9 years after it came out.

An American Tail was about a family of Judeo-Russian mice called the Mousekewitzes, who have fled to America after the Cossacks and their cats attack their village. Only mere hours away from their destination, a terrible storm separates young Fievel from the other Mousekewitzes, but luckily, he ends up in New York, where his family also happens to be, and searches for them.

This movie has great songs, and like N.I.M.H. and the other 2 Don Bluth movies from the 80's, this movie tells its story flawlessly.

6. Beauty and the Beast (1991)

A vain, spoiled prince is turned into a hairy beast by an enchantress after denying her shelter, and to break the spell, he must find someone to love that'll appreciate him for his inner beauty. The woman in particular is a bookworm named Belle, who chooses to be imprisoned in the Beast's castle instead of her father, who got lost in the woods and sought shelter. The Beast's servants, transformed into items, believe that she is the one to break the spell, and with time, the couple became closer.
When they say that this is the Disney company's best work, they meant it. It has wonderful music, tasteful visuals, and flawless storytelling. My mom says that I've watched this movie over and over when I was a little girl.

5. Kiki's Delivery Service (1989)

13 year old Kiki leaves her family to begin training as a witch in a new town, where she starts helping out at a bakery by delivering food on her broom. Throughout the year, Kiki befriends several people, including Tombo, a nerdy boy who develops a crush on after seeing her fly on her broom because he's interested in the subject of flight.

I liked this movie a lot. It has beautiful scenery, colorful characters, and is pretty much the best coming-of-age story ever made.

4. Ghostbusters (1984)

Three scientists lose their positions at Weaver Hall after the dean claims that their research is complete nonsense. They are the snarky Peter Venkman, optimistic Ray Stantz, and Egon Spengler, who "collects spores, molds, and fungus". The trio go into business as the Ghostbusters, trapping pesky ghosts and ghouls. Things get more serious when Dana Barrett's fridge happens to be the portal to another dimension where an ancient evil resides.

I first saw this movie in the mid-90's, where my strongest memory of the movie was the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man. Years later, I revisited this movie, and found out that this gets better the more you watch it.

3. Back to the Future trilogy (1985 - 1990)

I enjoyed these hilarious and epic adventures where Marty McFly travels through time in Doc Brown's DeLorean. The first movie was really amazing. The second movie, not so much, but Part III was an improvement from Part II, even though I'm not much of a Western fan.

We're only 3 years away from self-lacing shoes, hoverboards, and dehydrated Pizza Hut discs, so let's hope we get stuff like that in 2015!

2. Little Shop of Horrors (1986)

Charming musical based off of Roger Corman's low-budget B-movie about an awkward florist who breeds a mysterious plant in order to keep Mushnik's flower shop in business, and ultimately, win the heart of a beautiful co-worker. But in order for the plant to grow, it must feed on blood.

When I first saw this movie, I felt that everything felt perfect. The characters are well-written, the songs are beautiful, and overall... long story short, if you haven't seen it, please do! This is the movie that got me into movies featuring Rick Moranis in the first place.

1. Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989) + Honey, I Blew Up the Kid (1992)

Hey, look, another tie! The sequel's at 1.5. in my book.

If there's one thing better than a love story with a bloodthirsty plant from outer space, it's a comic adventure about a scatterbrained scientist whose shrink ray reduces them to the size of boogers, and both movies happen to have the same lead actor.

Wayne Szalinski has been trying to get his shrink ray to work, but all it does is turn apples into mush. One day, one of the neighbor kids hits a baseball through the attic window, making the shrink ray minimize the size of the furniture. When they, along with Wayne's kids Amy and Nick go get it, they all get shrunken and end up in the backyard. While trying to get back to the house to get back to normal, Wayne finds out that his shrink ray does work, and sets out to find the kids in the yard. This movie is fun, exciting, and at times, heartwarming.

The sequel, though not as good as the first movie, is about Wayne's youngest son, Adam, getting hit with a growth ray, and getting bigger and bigger every time he's exposed to electrical appliances. Meanwhile, Nick, as a teenager, tries to hit it off with a girl named Mandy, and they both try to keep the ever-expanding Adam out of trouble as they babysit him while Wayne and Diane try to find a way to bring Adam back to normal size.

Nowadays, visual effects have changed, but these are still classics.

Thanks for reading! Have a nice day!
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