An idiosyncratic top 100 films


It seems that at the beginning of every summer I receive email requests for movie suggestions. So, I've made up a categorized list of 100.

Caveats: Some have violence. Some may have some bad language and sexual insinuations. A couple have sneers about Christianity. Some just get to me.

So, I'm not recommending all these for all audiences-read descriptions and warnings. They are movies that if I were looking through a television listing some evening, and was weary of writing, I'd enjoy watching again. My top 10 are at the end.

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Five compassionate conservative films:

  1. It's a Wonderful Life
  2. Juno
  3. Schindler's List
  4. The Miracle Worker
  5. Groundhog Day

Five that raise interesting theological and ethical questions:

  1. Amadeus
  2. Dirty Harry
  3. To End All Wars
  4. The Fugitive
  5. The Truman Show

Five about crime and prison:

  1. Miller's Crossing
  2. The Godfather Part I
  3. The Godfather Part II
  4. Scarface
  5. The Shawshank Redemption

Five about human rights abroad:

  1. The Lives of Others
  2. Sophie Scholl
  3. The Lost City
  4. Hotel Rwanda
  5. The Stoning of Soroya M

Ten epics:

  1. Braveheart
  2. Gladiator
  3. Saving Private Ryan
  4. Spartacus
  5. Star Wars
  6. The Adventures of Robin Hood
  7. The Bridge on the River Kwai
  8. The Guns of Navarone
  9. The Last of the Mohicans
  10. The Mark of Zorro

Ten romances:

  1. Hitch
  2. One Fine Day
  3. Pride and Prejudice
  4. Serendipity
  5. Sleepless in Seattle
  6. While You Were Sleeping
  7. You've Got Mail
  8. Singin' in the Rain
  9. Swing Time
  10. Top Hat

Ten action/adventure:

  1. Raiders of the Lost Ark
  2. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  3. Air Force One
  4. Clear and Present Danger
  5. Independence Day
  6. Jaws
  7. Patriot Games
  8. The Hunt for Red October
  9. Die Hard
  10. The French Connection

Twenty films about America:

  1. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
  2. Coming to America
  3. My Cousin Vinnie
  4. Nashville
  5. McCabe and Mrs. Miller
  6. North by Northwest
  7. Rear Window
  8. Saboteur
  9. On the Waterfront
  10. Spider-Man
  11. The Wanderers
  12. Sullivan's Travels
  13. The Straight Story
  14. Twister
  15. Up
  16. Yankee Doodle Dandy
  17. Rocky I
  18. Rocky II
  19. Rocky IV
  20. O Brother Where Art Thou?

Twenty Westerns:

  1. Bend of the River
  2. Buchanan Rides Alone
  3. Comanche Station
  4. Fort Apache
  5. High Noon
  6. Ride Lonesome
  7. Ride the High Country
  8. Rio Grande
  9. Shane
  10. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon
  11. The Far Country
  12. The Hanging Tree
  13. The Magnificent Seven
  14. The Man From Laramie
  15. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
  16. The Naked Spur
  17. The Outlaw Josey Wales
  18. The Searchers
  19. The Tall T
  20. Winchester 73

My top 10:

  1. The Right Stuff
  2. Casablanca
  3. Chariots of Fire
  4. Field of Dreams
  5. Tender Mercies
  6. The Family Man
  7. The Great Escape
  8. The Lord of the Rings (trilogy)
  9. The Princess Bride
  10. Lonesome Dove

Marvin Olasky
Marvin Olasky

Marvin is editor in chief of WORLD News Group and the author of more than 20 books, including The Tragedy of American Compassion. Follow Marvin on Twitter @MarvinOlasky.


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