Patrick’s 100 Movies – Part 7of 10
Here’s the 7th set in my ongoing Patrick’s 100 Movies where I pick my favorite films. Making a list like this is definitely harder than you’d think.
Sometimes the fun of a list of movies you like comes in just throwing out ten titles that aren’t of the same genre and have no real connection to each other at all.
If you missed part 6, check it out here.
I’ve done a few sets that were all sci-fi, for example. For this edition of Patrick’s 100 Movies, the genres are random. But the films are worth a look if you’ve never seen them.
As before, these are in no particular order.
61. ‘The Hunt for Red October’ (1990)
A spy thriller based on Tom Clancy’s novel, this movie tells the story of Jack Ryan, a CIA analyst who realizes a well-known Soviet nuclear submarine captain intends to defect to America.
In post-Cold War America, the movie still packed a punch. And Sean Connery’s Capt. Ramius is the “enemy” you truly come to pull for, hoping he wants to make it to America.
62. ‘The Caine Mutiny’ (1954)
As a general rule, I hate war pictures. This one is a rare exception. Humphrey Bogart is great at Captain Queeg, the paranoid soldier who puts his ship at risk leaving his senior crew members no choice but to take command of the ship.
63. ‘The Cannonball Run’ (1981)
Yes, I’m serious. It is what it is, and that’s mindless entertainment, which we all need once in a while. Burt Reynolds and Dom DeLouise are friends who are competing against a madcap collection of stars to win a cross-country, nearly-anything-goes race. And the bloopers during the credits are worth watching the whole movie for.
64. ‘All the President’s Men’ (1976)
The story of the Watergate break-in from the vantage point of the reporters who wouldn’t stop searching for the truth.
There are genuine scary moments in this tense drama, and that, I think is part of the point: Nixon’s White House was accused of almost everything under the sun, and finding yourself on the wrong side of that Oval Office was supposed to be scary.
65. ‘The Taking of Pelham One Two Three’ (1974)
Who’d want to hijack a subway train? A group of heavily-armed men with a plan to make their crazy idea work. Some of the wisecracks are a little dated today, but it’s still a great film, headed by Walter Matthau as the New York City transit detective who’s determined to track down the hijackers down to the last Gesundheit.
66. ‘A Christmas Story’ (1983)
If it hadn’t been for TBS’s annual tradition of running this sleepy little picture for 24 consecutive hours every Christmas, it wouldn’t be the hit it is today.
All little Ralphie wants is a Red Ryder Carbine Action 200-shot Range Model air rifle. But the childhood dream is constantly shattered by the warning, “You’ll shoot your eye out.” This comedic slice of 1940s Midwest life has a happy ending and still keep you in the Christmas spirit.
67. ‘Outbreak’ (1995)
This is probably not a film that a hypochondriac should enjoy, but this medical thriller about a deadly virus on the loose in a California town is definitely on my list. The heroes, including Dustin Hoffman, Renee Russo, Kevin Spacey and Cuba Gooding, Jr., realize the government has had a cure for this virus for decades. But will the military save a small community if it means giving up a biological weapon?
68. ‘The Fugitive’ (1993)
It’s my favorite Harrison Ford movie, but Tommy Lee Jones steals the show repeatedly as the quick-witted marshall who is trailing the man wrongly accused of killing his wife. This is a long movie, but it pulls you in and doesn’t feel long at all.
69. ‘Quiz Show’ (1994)
Robert Redford directed this movie about the quiz show scandals of the 1950s. He tells the story of Charles van Doren, who joined a conspiracy to win a rigged quiz show, Twenty-One and the fallout that begins once rumors of rigging turn into a Congressional investigation. Both the history and TV buff in me are satisfied by the telling, though surely there was plenty of artistic license that made its way into the script.
70. ‘Wag the Dog’ (1997)
This is probably one of my all-time favorite comedies. A president gets involved in a sex scandal, so his secret advisers hire a Hollywood producer to fabricate (and produce) a war. The idea is to unite the country around patriotism and ignore the accusations.
There are plenty of laughs. But just as things begin to get more and more implausible, there’s a sinking feeling that comes when you realize something like this might not be so implausible after all.
Look for the remaining 30 in my list over the next few weeks.