Saturday, December 28, 2013

The Gone-Gone 80s

Jesse Walker now turns his sights on the films of 1983.  Here are his top ten:

1. Sans Soleil
2. Videodrome
3. The King of Comedy
4. Tender Mercies
5. Zelig
6. Pauline at the Beach
7. The Meaning of Life
8. El Sur
9. El Norte
10. A Christmas Story

Sans Soleil is an interesting choice. It's certainly a fascinating, if odd, film.  Videodrome is a great example of Cronenberg's mix of the organic and inorganic, though I'm not sure if I'd put it that high.  Kind Of Comedy I'm never sure what to make of--I don't even think it's a good film, but it's hard to look away.  Tender Mercies I find to be pure boredom.  Zelig isn't top-tier Woody, but it's fun and, as a slight (but experimental) film has held up well.

Pauline At The Beach deserves to be up there.  The Meaning Of Life was weaker than their last two films, but the good stuff is special enough that I can't object to it making the top ten.  El Sur I've never seen. El Norte I like, if not love. A Christmas Story is also fun, though it probably wouldn't make my top ten.

Here are the honorable mentions:

11. À Nos Amours
12. John Cage
13. Carmen
14. Trading Places
15. The Store
16. Risky Business
17. Local Hero
18. Rockit
19. Smorgasbord
20. Chance Encounters

11 I like. Haven't seen 12, 13, 15 or 20.  14 would make my top ten--probably Eddie Murphy's best performance and a pretty good comedy all around.  16 would also have a shot at the top--a surprisingly well-done teen comedy.  17 should also be higher.  18 is a music video.  19 is hard to discuss--after being off the screen for a decade, Jerry Lewis made some comeback films in his old style, and all I can say is they're quite something to watch.

I do agree with Jesse that the big Oscar-winner, Terms Of Endearment, isn't the classic that so many seemed to think it was back then.

Here are a few other films that would make my top ten:

Baby It's You (maybe John Sayles' best--when he took on bigger themes he got worse)

The Fourth Man

Project A

Other films I enjoyed in 1983:

The Big Chill,  Bill Cosby: Himself, A Christmas Story, Educating Rita, Koyaanisqatsi, Liquid Sky, Lianna, The Man With Two Brains, Max Dugan Returns, National Lampoon’s Vacation, The Outsiders, Return Of The Jedi, Reuben Reuben,  Rumble Fish, Strange Brew, Twilight Zone: The Movie (the second half), WarGames
Other films of interest:
All The Right Moves, And The Ship Sails On, Another Time Another Place, L’Argent, Bad Boys, Betrayal, Between Friends, Blue Thunder, Brainstorm, Breathless, Can She Bake A Cherry Pie?, Chained Heat, Christine, Class, Class Of 1984, Confidentially Yours, Cracking Up, Cross Creek, Curse Of The Pink Panther, Cujo, Curtains, D. C. Cab, Daniel, Danton, The Dead Zone, Deal Of The Century, Doctor Detroit, The Dresser, Easy Money, Eddie And The Cruisers, Eddie Macon’s Run, First Name: Carmen, Flashdance, Get Crazy, Good Guys Wear Black, Gorky Park, Hanna K, Heart Like A Wheel, The House On Sorority Row, The Hunger, Jaws 3-D, Joe’s Bed-Stury Barbershop: We Cut Heads, Joysticks, Krull, Let’s Spend The Night Together, Lone Wolf McQaude, Losin’ It, Lovesick, Lucien Brouillard,The Man Who Loved Women, Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence, Moon In The Gutter, Mr. Mom, My Breakfast With Blassie, Never Cry Wolf, Never Say Never Again, Nighthawks, Nostalghia, Octopussy, The Osterman Weekend, Phar Lap, The Pirates Of Penzance,  The Ploughman’s Lunch, Private School, Psycho II, The Right Stuff, Romantic Comedy, Scarface, Sheer Madness, Silkwood, Something Wicked This Way Comes, Space Raiders, Spacehunter: Adventurer In The Forbidden Zone, Spring Break, Star 80,  Stacy’s Knights, The Star Chamber, Staying Alive, Still Smokin,  The Sting II, Strange Invaders, Streamers, Stroker Ace, Sudden Impact, Superman III, The Survivors, Sweet Sixteen, Testament, A Time To Die, To Be Or Not To Be, Trenchcoat, Two Of A Kind, Uncommon Valor, Under Fire, Valley Girl, The Wicked Lady,  The Wind In The Willows, Without A Trace, Yellowbeard, Yentl, Yor Hunter The Hunter From The Future


Blogger Jesse said...

Liquid Sky did make my list for 1982..

5:45 AM, December 28, 2013  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought you hated Koyaanisqatsi because it was too green

8:09 AM, December 28, 2013  
Blogger LAGuy said...

Even if I cared, Koyaanisqatsi is not green. (It just thinks it is.)

10:55 AM, December 28, 2013  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you asked rappers, Scarface would be #1.

12:05 PM, December 28, 2013  

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