So, I have two annoyingly awesome qualities centered around movies. Rather than the typical “name that tune”, I prefer “name the movie” as I associate songs with movies. Next, I roll out movie quotes and expect everyone around me to know them, love them, and keep them going. If you fail, I get judgey, very judgey. I just can’t help it. Go watch movies, y’all!
I was recently asked what my top 10 favorite movies are. My reply, “Top comedies? Top Christmas movies? Top movie quotes? What am I working with here?” Simply, my top movies, ever. I couldn’t limit to just 10, and it is evident there is a strong 90’s or comedy theme. So, in no particular order, I give you the best movies ever, as decided by ME!
1. Pulp Fiction
I remember watching this movie at an age far before I should have, with a boyfriend in high school, making my mark to be “cool” and be into Quinten Tarrentino. The drugs, the guns, the crime all stood in the shadows of the underlying comedic angle to a somewhat serious storyline. One EPIC dance scene, a $5 shake, a Royale with Cheese, and even a shot of adrenaline to the heart. I was hooked and a QT fan forever. Did you know that he does a cameo in all of his movies?
2. Empire Records
This movie screams nostalgia. The cult classic story is based on a group of eclectic teenagers working in a record store in the 90s. With every stereotype bottled into one group: stoner, nerd, preppy, thief, punk rocker, emo, and more, the story focuses on the friendship that can be formed with odd company when you all have a common goal. Save Empire Records! A fabulous music theme throughout, Rex Manning Day, and my all-time favorite scene and silly dance, “Lucas wants money, lots of money, your money!”
3. Office Space
If you work in an office now or ever and haven’t seen Office Space, stop what you are doing and go now. NOW! The sea of cubicles, ridiculous demands from management, and that one guy in the office that no one wants to be around. We have all been there. This movie is so relatable and hilarious all at the same time. It brings us quotes and memories like, TPS reports, “Have you seen my stapler?”, and smashing the printer. Man, I have ALWAYS wanted to smash a computer like that!
Much like the relatability of Office Space to corporate America, Waiting is to the service industry. Ryan Reynolds and Justin Long star in this day-long expose of working in a restaurant and the struggle of moving “up” into management or staying “just a waiter”. This is movie is raunchy, disgusting, and hilarious. After spending 10+ years in the service industry and seeing the ridiculous things that can happen in the front of the house and back of the house, this movie hits home. Be nice to your servers!
5. The Jerk
This 1979 Steve Martin classic stops me every time. Featuring Navin (Martin), who moves to St. Louis to find himself after discovering he is actually a white man, despite being raised as a poor black boy in Mississippi. His series of misfortunate events, including joining the carnival, keeps the laughter coming the entire movie.
6. Mean Girls
“On Wednesday we wear pink”.“She doesn’t even go here!” “I’m not like a *regular* mom, I’m a cool mom.” The list of memorable quotes that I can work into my daily language is endless! With a powerful female cast of Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Rachel McAdams, and Lindsay Lohan this movie is both funny and a bit eye-opening into the cruel world of cliques in high school. October 3rd is now a holiday and “Jingle Bell Rock” will never be the same.
7. The Family Stone
Changing gears a bit with this one. This movie resonates so much with me. Labeled a “Christmas Movie” due to the timing of the set, but I could watch it year round, and do. As the youngest of five children in an extremely tight knit family I feel every theme of this story in my bones: a matriarch that every single person loves, the agony of bringing home a significant other to a huge family, and the “I can pick on my sibling, but you can’t”, relationship between siblings. The Family Stone is funny, happy, and sad all at the same time. I can’t make it through it with a dry eye.
8. Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead
When the cranky old lady babysitter dies and leaves teenage Christina Applegate in charge of her siblings for the entire summer, she is forced to grow up fast! Dressing the part and a few white lies on the resume she has landed a job as an Executive Administrative Assistant to the CEO of a “fashion” company. Take note future employees, if you drop “I’m right on top of that Rose” in the workplace it is immediate bonus points. This movie is every bit of cheesy, ridiculous 90s fashion, bad music and I love it. It was my first look at what it’s like to be a female in the workplace fighting for your job and dealing with politics.
9. Forrest Gump
One of the best soundtracks that has ever existed. Tom Hanks knocked it out of the park. It is an extremely long movie based in my home state of Alabama. A dramatic and (somewhat) comedic look at life in the south, Alabama Football, the 1960s, the Vietnam War, and a boy who loved his mama and girl named Jenny. Peas and carrots, ping pong, and a whole lot of running. Let’s not forget about Bubba who taught us everything there is to know about shrimp and Lieutenant Dan who taught us the importance of socks. “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get!”
10. Fight Club
First rule of Fight Club: You don’t talk about Fight Club.
Brad Pitt in his glory days. Edward Norton is one of my favorites. The end. Go watch the movie.
11. Home Alone
Of course, I had to include a classic Christmas movie. It doesn’t get better than Home Alone. Again, I have a soft spot for a story about a big family, specifically the youngest kid that is always getting a bad wrap!
Kevin is so smart and so brave.
12. Dazed and Confused
I could seriously argue with myself that this is THE best soundtrack ever made, but then I think about Forrest Gump. Another high school-themed cult classic that features a group of kids on the last day of school in 1976. Now a foreign concept, but once a reality where the “cool” kids leaving Junior High and entering the high school are hazed and inducted by the upcoming Senior Class, much like a Sorority or Fraternity in high school. Jason Lee is the star quarterback who has discovered the high life, if you know what I mean and wants to stick it to the man. Matthew McConaughey is creepy and downright amazing, delivering the iconic “alright, alright, alright…”
Not to mention, there have always been rumors that this movie was based loosely on a high school from my hometown, so that’s fun!