“R” You Ready For Some Great Cinema?
This iconic image is from one of this week’s list of “Movies A – Z” – which highlights some of the best films that begin with an “R” – from Oscar winners to raucous comedies and this too:
Don’t be scared, you will love all of my choices, and no doubt you will let me know what I missed, as I admit this letter is packed with great films that will have to wait until the next go around…for now, let’s head back to high school with these two:
10 – “Romy & Michelle’s High School Reunion”
Mira Sorvino and Lisa Kudrow are hilarious as Roma & Michelle, who decide to make up success stories for themselves as they head to their high school reunion.
Here is the trailer:
This film is funny and sweet in equal measure, one of the best “reunion” films – speaking of that, try this great “high school reunion” double bill:
Romy and Michelle are iconic names now…but let’s go back to meet someone who wasn’t iconic at all – well, at the time at least:
9 – “Raiders Of The Lost Ark”
Yes, when this 1981 film was released, no one knew who Indiana Jones was…hard to imagine that now! It’s a film filled with iconic moments like this one at the beginning of the film:
Remember when we meet Indiana, he is about to exchange the golden statue with a bag of heavy rocks…what could go wrong?
Oh yeah, THAT.
Check out the original trailer for the film – which sells it as a dramatic action adventure from George Lucas and Steven Spielberg – much more than the wild, crowd-pleasing romp it is!
Interesting they don’t use the iconic theme song until the very end of the trailer as well! They really didn’t know just how big this film was going to be, in large part because of the terrific action sequences, but also because the the genuine chemistry between Ford and co-star Karen Allen:
What a great piece of escapist entertainment!
It’s great to see a Director at the top of their game – next up, we have two of them!
8 – “Raising Arizona”
Twenty years ago, Joel and Ethan Coen told the hilarious story of a young woman who wants a baby – any baby – and the husband she sends out to get her one….in this case Nicolas Cage in all this wacky glory!
Here is the trailer for “Raising Arizona”:
The film is shot like a Roadrunner cartoon, with outlandish action sequences and an over-the-top performance by the legendary wild man Nicolas Cage:
I love this movie – a non-stop live action cartoon….the Coens went on to make classic dramas like “Fargo” and the Best Picture winner “No Country For Old Men”…and speaking of Oscar…
7 – “Rocky”
It beat out classic films like “Network”, “Taxi Driver” and “All The President’s Men” for Best Picture of 1976, but that’s OK, because “Rocky” is a classic as well!
Remember the trailer:
John G. Avildsen won the Best Director Oscar as well – and both are deserved, as this movie has grit, honesty and emotion in equal measure – bravo to Sylvester Stallone as well!
My next “R” movie tells the story of America’s “race to space” – an absolutely riveting film with an incredible cast:
6 – “The Right Stuff”
Here is a film that brings history alive in the most compelling way.
“The Right Stuff” is the 1983 epic written and directed by Philip Kaufman. It was adapted from Tom Wolfe’s best-selling 1979 book of the same name about the Navy, Marine, and Air Force test pilots who were involved in aeronautical research, and the story of the seven pilots who were selected to be the astronauts for Project Mercury, the first human spaceflight by the United States.
The film was written and directed by Philip Kaufman and stars Ed Harris, Scott Glenn, Sam Shepard, Fred Ward, Dennis Quaid and Barbara Hershey.
Here is the trailer for this epic tale of science and wonder:
The film is a powerful document of the beginning of space Travel el, but a poignant look at the Pilots who were left behind…a great film from beginning to end.
I’m not a huge fan of animated films, but when one is a tasty classic like this, it deserves recognition!
5 – “Ratatouille”
Give Pixar a lot of credit telling the story of a Parisian Rat who wants to be a Chef…and bravo to them for hiring legendary Chef Thomas Keller to oversee all of the recipes in the film – they are all accurate!
Check out the trailer for this charming animated classic:
Chef Keller’s Ratatouille recipe is amazing – I’ve made it several times and love it – you can see it for yourself here:
If you want some great music to listen to while cooking, my next film has you covered – with The Clash!
4 – “Rude Boy”
I love this film. It’s the fictional story of a “roadie” for the legendary punk rock band The Clash as they tour the UK at the end of the 70’s – and the filmmakers used REAL live concerts by the band to film scenes for the movie – so you see the band really in action! Here is the trailer:
The movie captures the moment when punk rock was on the verge of exploding – click here to see more about this terrific film:
Next up is another film that uses music to good effect – by making one of the main characters a huge KISS fan!
3 – “Role Models”
This is a really funny 2008 film starring Paul Rudd and Sean William Scott as two guys who avoid jail by becoming “Role Models” for young boys…here is the trailer:
For those who have seen it, know that all of the most offensive lines spoken to the kids were said while the actual child Actors were out of the room!
Paul Rudd and Sean William Scott ar e hilarious, as is Christopher Mintz-Plasse – who you may remember for this iconic role:
Yes, he was “McLovin'” from “Superbad! The film has one very funny running gag for Paul McCartney fans, as one of the camp counselors continues to insist that Wings wrote a certain song he keeps singing..if you want to hear it, click here:
Next up, I have some more great movie trivia: what film that begins with the letter “R” caused Frank Sinatra to serve divorce papers to his wife Mia Farrow?
2 – “Rosemary’s Baby”
That’s right, this classic horror film went over schedule while filming – so Sinatra demanded that wife Mia Farrow quit the film – and when Frank tells someone to walk off a set, he expects them to walk off a set! But Mia Farrow didn’t, so he divorced her!
The film was worth it – check out the trailer:
This is a brilliant psychological horror film, with a mesmerizing performance by Mia Farrow as the young married woman who may be giving birth to Satan’s baby!
Read more behind-the-scenes trivia about this masterpiece here:
I want to end with one of my all-time favorite movies – a huge flop when it was released in 1975, but now considered a modern classic – and one of the greatest “audience participation” films of all time!
1 – “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”
What needs to be said? A notorious flop upon release, the film gained traction as a “midnight movie”, and soon, fans were mobbing theaters dressed as their favorite characters!
Here is the trailer:
There have been a number of great blu-ray releases of the movie, with lots of extra audience material – terrific music, great campy storyline – just one of my all-time favorites…oh, and what about that ad:
Those red lips! One of the most iconic images ever put on a movie poster – oh, here’s another iconic image for you as well:
“In space, no one can hear you scream.” Classic. What a line and what an image…of course, “Alien” was on my list of “Movies With An A”, which you can see more of by clicking here:
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