TheThrussellProject has reached the sixth part of its 100 Movies list, let’s see who features this time as we take a look at numbers #79 – #75.
#79 – Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi
The last chapter in the galactic saga sees Luke Skywalker return to rescue Han Solo from Jabba the Hut. Darth Vader and the Galactic Empire are constructing a new more powerful Death Star, leading to the final showdown between father and son.
Return of the Jedi (ROTJ) is a fitting conclusion to the original trilogy, the opening scene at Jabba’s palace is a highlight in a film which has terrific battles right up until the epic finale. We finally witness Luke becoming a Jedi as he confronts Vader and the Emperor whilst the rebels battle on Endor.
Most fans consider this the weakest of the original films but now with the new instalments thrown into the mix, ROTJ helps answer all the lingering questions. Watching the entire series now from episode I – VI makes for interesting viewing as we see the transition of Anakin to Darth Vader and actually begin understand how this happened.
Return of the Jedi is a must see along with the whole series, this is as exciting to watch today as it was back in its day.
Year released: 1983
Directed by: Richard Marquand, George Lucas
Starring: Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher
#78 – Superman The Movie
Sent from his dying home planet to Earth by his father, a young boy is taken in and grows up as Clark Kent. Discovering he has superpowers unlike anybody he becomes a newspaper reporter in New York hiding his alter ego as Superman who fights for justice and criminal Lex Luthor.
The late Christopher Reeve was a relative unknown before Superman, nowadays he will always be remembered as the clumsy reporter and handsome superhero.
In comparison to the below-par 2006 reboot Superman Returns, this has stood the test of time and is regarded as the ultimate of all superhero films, Superman really will make you believe ‘a man can fly.’
Year released: 1978
Directed by: Richard Donner
Starring: Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Gene Hackman, Marlon Brando
#77 – Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone
J.K. Rowling never must have expected what would happen when she finally had her first Harry Potter published in ,seven books and eight films later, Harry Potter is one of the best-loved fictional works to have ever been created.
Not only did Chris Columbus bring the magic of Harry Potter to the screen, he did it by staying faithful to the book and picking the perfect cast. Dumbledore, Hagrid and Ron in particular are exactly how you would imagine them to be.
Philosophers Stone is perfect at introducing us to the characters and magical world as Harry learns he is famous within the wizarding world and is destined for great things From the entrance into Hogwarts, Quidditch and forbidden forest the first instalment will have you hooked to the series.
The first two films were very much children’s films that adults could also enjoy. Prisoner of Azkaban took the series further as the kids grew up and the story developed into a darker mood and spoke to a wider audience.
All eight films are essential viewing but Philosophers Stone makes the list because it is where the magic of book to screen began for Harry Potter.
Year Released: 2001
Directed by: Chris Columbus
Starring: Richard Harris, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Robbie Coltrane
#76 – Memento
Former insurance investigator Leonard (Guy Pearce) has short-term memory, he can remember everything up to the attack that killed his wife and left him in this condition. He can no longer build new memories so writes notes on Polaroid pictures and tattoos important information to his body, all in order to find and kill the killer of his wife.
Memento is the most original thriller around, with the story playing in reverse and slowly unravelling the truth, you get to experience the confusion just as much as Leonard as if you are in his shoes. Carrie Ann Moss and Joe Pantoliano’s characters mess with our perceptions and constantly shift from friend to foe.
Writer/Director Christopher Nolan has a compelling masterpiece on his hands here, in what was his first major film. Nolan is one of the best directors around and he clearly likes to play with psychological themes within his features, this is a prime example of how he uses it to perfection.
Memento is probably a film to watch more than once, but on first viewing it is a treat to be participating as if you are Leonard unravelling the mystery.
Year Released: 2000
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Starring: Guy Pearce, Carrie Ann Moss, Joe Pantoliano
#75 – American Beauty
Kevin Spacey excels as Lester Burnham who after suffering a mid-life crisis, finally decides to change his life. Quitting his job and joining a fast food chain, he tries to gain the attention of his teenage daughters friend Angela by working out. His wife Carolyn takes on an affair with a rival business partner and his rebellious daughter Jane strikes up a friendship with the strange boy next door who has a homophobic father.
American Beauty is an Oscar-winning dark comedy that gives an insight into dysfunctional family life. From the outside these characters have the perfect house and perfect lives, but look closer and you will see Lester is falling deeper into depression and his family are paranoid and unhappy.
The way Spacey plays Lester is perfect, he deals with the characters emotional ride with ease and delivers some standout sarcastic lines. Annette Benning also deserves a mention as the wife who is obsessed with her public image.
American Beauty has a great script acted out by some career best performances. This was Sam Mendes’ first film coming from theatre and what a start it was for the new James Bond director.
Year released: 1999
Directed by: Sam Mendes
Starring: Kevin Spacey, Annette Benning, Chris Cooper