Favorite Movie for Every Year of My Life: The List

Thanks to one of my friends on facebook sharing this A.V. Club post and a list of his favorites, I spent most of my free time on Friday compiling my own list. This was hard for me. Once I get to listing and ranking, I take it seriously, so I looked at lists of films released in each of these years, made shortlists of my favorites for each year, and then, for the purposes of this list, forced myself to pick only one favorite per year. Some years were ridiculously easy (No Country for Old Men has no competition in my eyes, though I know others disagree); others were almost impossibly hard (1992, 2000, 2004, 2006, 2009, 2011, for instance).

I see a few patterns in my overall list. First, my favorites tend far more toward comedy and horror than I expected – and sometimes both at once (Re-Animator and Shaun of the Dead!). I chose comedy or horror over serious drama at multiple points, even when I think maybe the serious dramas are actually better films; and many other times I chose comedy or horror because I simply hadn’t seen the major dramas of that year, tending to opt for something fun rather than something heavy more often than not. Second, I am a sucker for a musical. Note the choices for 2000-2002, for instance. My runners-up for 2000 included Billy Elliot and Dancer in the Dark, to further underscore this point. Finally, I enjoy big blockbuster sf and action movies more than I usually want to admit to (Independence DayFace/Off!).

1979 – Monty Python’s Life of Brian, dir. Terry Jones
1980 – 9 to 5, dir. Colin Higgins
1981 – An American Werewolf in London, dir. John Landis
1982 – The Thing, dir. John Carpenter
1983 – Monty Python’s The Meaning of Life, dir. Terry Jones and Terry Gilliam
1984 – Ghostbusters, dir. Ivan Reitman
1985 – Re-Animator, dir. Stuart Gordon
1986 – The Fly, dir. David Cronenberg
1987 – Planes, Trains, and Automobiles, dir. John Hughes
1988 – Scrooged, dir. Richard Donner
1989 – Uncle Buck, dir. John Hughes
1990 – Edward Scissorhands, dir. Tim Burton
1991 – The Silence of the Lambs, dir. Jonathan Demme
1992 – Candyman, dir. Bernard Rose
1993 – Jurassic Park, dir. Steven Spielberg
1994 – The Hudsucker Proxy, dir. Joel and Ethan Coen
1995 – Sense and Sensibility, dir. Ang Lee
1996 – Independence Day, dir. Roland Emmerich
1997 – Face/Off, dir. John Woo
1998 – The Big Lebowski, dir. Joel and Ethan Coen
1999 – Galaxy Quest, dir. Dean Parisot
2000 – O Brother, Where Art Thou?, dir. Joel and Ethan Coen
2001 – Moulin Rouge!, dir. Baz Luhrmann
2002 – Chicago, dir. Rob Marshall
2003 – Mystic River, dir. Clint Eastwood
2004 – Shaun of the Dead, dir. Edgar Wright
2005 – Brokeback Mountain, dir. Ang Lee
2006 – Pan’s Labyrinth, dir. Guillermo del Toro
2007 – No Country for Old Men, dir. Joel and Ethan Coen
2008 – Burn After Reading, dir. Joel and Ethan Coen
2009 – Thirst, dir. Chan-wook Park
2010 – Even the Rain, dir. Iciar Bollain
2011 – Sunny, dir. Hyeong-Cheol Kang
2012 – Safety Not Guaranteed, dir. Colin Trevorrow
2013 – Snowpiercer, dir. Joon-ho Bong
2014 – The Babadook, dir. Jennifer Kent
2015 – Mad Max: Fury Road, dir. George Miller
2016 – The Witch, dir. Robert Eggers

This is my list as of this weekend, but I’m having doubts about a couple of entries, and I plan to write more about my choices – perhaps year by year – over the next couple of weeks (or months, depending on how my schedule plays out).

1 thought on “Favorite Movie for Every Year of My Life: The List

  1. Pingback: 2016: The Witch | Dr. Christy Tidwell

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