In the end, the good guys win, the guy gets the girl and seals it with a kiss (bonus points if it's in the rain), and taking off the wallflower's glasses suddenly reveals she's been a supermodel all along. You know it: We're talking about classic movies that get us Every. Single. Time. And, though it might be getting warmer outside, this weekend's still a pretty awesome time to screen all those flicks you've been meaning to watch — and I few we're guessing you didn't have on your list.
So, we've listed 26 of our absolute favorites for the movie marathon of our dreams. Forgive us if we prefer the Hollywood endings to the real thing, but these rockstar protagonists never seem to have to take out the trash or file tax returns. Instead, they're fighting crime, saving empires, or winning over the ones they love. Click through for our favorite 25 films of all time. Annnd….scene.
To Catch A Thief
"My favorite movie is To Catch A Thief. Cary Grant, Grace Kelly, gorgeous costumes, dark romance, and cheeky humor. In my mind, nothing is better than that."
Harold and Maude
"Hands-down, Harold and Maude. I am in awe of everything the great Hal Ashby ever directed (if you don't love Being There or Shampoo I can't be friends with you), but Harold And Maude is truly everything you could ever want in a movie experience: Loads of severely twisted humor, an unpredictable love story, rich Bay Area cinematography, a dark — mostly unrevealed — subtext, mad early-'70s style, and the king of all soundtracks, courtesy of Cat Stevens. My favorite line? Maude's, of course: 'Try something new each day. After all, we’re given life to find it out. It doesn’t last forever.'"
The Big Sleep
"This film noir has it all: a convoluted plot, Bogie and Bacall, double-crosses and multiple mysteries, and a snappy screenplay (by William Faulkner, no less!) based on Raymond Chandler's novel. It's confusing as hell, but this is hardboiled cinema at its best. "
"I know every single word to this movie by virtue of repetition. Do you know why? Because there is never a time when this movie isn't the right thing to watch. When you're happy? It works. When you're tired and can't focus? It works. When you're heartbroken and just want to lay in bed? It will cheer you up! I can't even fathom trying to pick a favorite scene, but a few contenders:
Ty: 'My thighs, they don't feel nothin' like steel.'
Cher: 'Duh, it's like a famous quote...from CliffsNotes.'
Mugger in the Valley: 'An A-what-uh?'
Cher: 'Oh my god. I love Josh! I am majorly, totally, butt-crazy in love with Josh.'"
"When I think of my favorites, movie-wise, this Billy Wilder gem is always on top of my list. Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine's chemistry radiates, and their witty dialogue never gets old. Everything about the film makes me happy — New York City in 1960, Ms. Kubelik's adorable pixie cut and C.C. Baxter straining spaghetti with a tennis racquet."
"Yes, it's a movie based on a board game, but unlike the horror show that was Battleship, this one is actually worth watching. It features some of the absolute greats of comedy (Madeline Kahn! Tim Curry! Christopher Lloyd!) and is the very essence of a, to use movie critic speak, madcap romp. The movie roughly follows the premise of the board game, in that the characters — Professor Plum, Mrs. Peacock, Colonel Mustard, et. al. — are trapped in a mansion and trying to figure out who among them killed Mr. Boddy. There are multiple endings, red herrings, farcical chase scenes, and way too many awesome quotes to list here. Alright, fine — I'll give you one of my faves:
'You lure men to their deaths like a spider with flies!'
'Flies are where men are most vulnerable.'"
"'It's too bad she won't live! But then again, who does?' I know it is a total geek cliché, but my father and I watched this movie when I was little, I watched in the darkness of my teenage years, and I still am thrilled with it every time I see it today. I believe Philip K. Dick is the author who has been most adapted to movies, and its probably because Blade Runner, the first to tackle his work, is one of the greatest films of all time. A neo-futuristic noir that is pitch, pitch perfect, this (and Alien, and maybe Gladiator) are the reason I keep returning to Ridley Scott. I have a lot of movies I deeply love (and I can write on this for hours), but this is my favorite, the one that I think is the best. It's all so good: the Vangelis score, the costuming, the pacing, and the universal feeling of trying to preserve moments but 'losing them to time, like tears in the rain.'"
"My choice is also from America's golden cinematic decade of the 1970s. This film debuted Shelley Hack, featured Sigourney Weaver and gave Jeff Goldblum his first memorable one-liner, while Brooke Shields and Danny Aiello were not so lucky; their roles were cut. This movie? The incomparable ANNIE HALL.
Annie Hall is the quintessential NY movie; intelligent, romantic, quirkily optimistic, and neurotic. It features an insanely stylish and stunning female lead and an unlikely hero, plus it has just enough nuanced mockery to make it view-worthy over and over again.
My biggest challenge with Annie Hall? To actually pick its most memorable line — there are so many! So I'm going with this one:
Alvy Singer: 'I was thrown out of N.Y.U. my freshman year for cheating on a metaphysics final, you know, I looked within the soul of the boy sitting next to me.'"
"Though it was a tough call between Empire Records, The Goonies, and Hook, with '90s style, Ethan Embry, a dance sequence on the roof, tons of great music, and a feel good time — there's pretty much nothing not to love about this cult classic. Except for the fact that I drop quotes like 'Well Sinead O' Rebellion! Shock me, shock me, shock me with that devious behavior!', 'I don't feel the need to explain my art to you Warren.' and 'Oh Rexy, you're so sexy!' in everyday conversation fairly regularly and they only have about a 20% reception rate. Damn the man! Save the Empire!"
"It breaks my wayward film-major heart to pick a favorite. Right now though, I cannot think of a better, more re-watchable film than Rosemary's Baby. The restrained build of unsettlement and suspicion gets me anxious and excited every single time. The performances are so layered and nuanced it's hard to believe they're even actors. The photography, beauty, and style of the film is unparalleled. By the time the climax hits I'm usually clutching the nearest shoulder, screaming 'All of them witches!' It's the most perfect, terrifying New York-summer movie ever made."
Being John Malkovich
"I automatically love anything by Charlie Kaufman, but this continues to blow my mind time and again (and not just because it's, like, so meta). Also, a certain boyfriend once told me I remind him of Cameron Diaz's character, and I'm still trying to figure out whether or not I should be insulted."
Hannah And Her Sisters
"The opening line by Michael Caine, 'God, she's beautiful.' It never gets old. Ever."
"My all time favorite movie is Braveheart. I'm a sucker for sweeping historical epics, and this film has it all. On one hand it's an incredible action film with some of the most intense and realistic battle scenes ever filmed. On the other hand, it's a love story and a drama that touches on some of the most basic human emotions - pride, honor, loyalty, hope, and of course, bravery. This tale is told with stunning cinematography and a perfect score by James Horner. Braveheart set the bar for every movie of this genre. Many have tried to recreate the magic of its famous scenes, but no one has done it quite like Mel. I've watched it a thousand times, and every viewing still moves me to tears. My favorite line is the classic, 'Every man dies, not every man really lives.'"
"I watched The Graduate for the first time during my last year of film school. Maybe that wasn't such a good idea since I started getting panicky about my life after college, but it taught me a lot visually, structurally, and creatively. Every component of this film just works in the way Mike Nicols only knows how — the Simon and Garfunkel soundtrack, the uncomfortable love-triangle, the absolute perfection of the cast (come on, how can you not be charmed by a young and awkward Dustin Hoffman). You can't run into anyone who doesn't know where 'Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to seduce me...' is from. It's Nicols at his best (with The Birdcage coming in at a close second) and I can watch it a million times over."
"This one is easy. My favorite movie is Waynes World. Closely followed by Waynes World 2. When I was a kid growing up in suburban France, I thought, and prayed, and dreamed that Aurora, Illinois was what America was like. All of America. I watched it dubbed in French every single weekend and made my parents buy me a drum kit so I could be like Garth (...don't ask). Also have you been aquainted with Cassandra's outfits?!"
"This is the one movie I can always watch and never tire of. Summer love, awesome music, the final dance sequence, Swayze — it all just makes me very happy. And, no, I won't even go near the sequel, Havana Nights. Why did that even happen?!"
"A biopic of the most notoriously awful filmmaker ever, Ed Wood is not only a hysterical and stylish look at the campy B-movies of the 1950s (my favorites), but a genuinely touching story of a guy who would stop at nothing to realize his dreams of entertaining the world. From Johnny Depp's insanely hilarious portrayal of the titular director to the loving homages to classic horror films, I can think of no other movie I could watch day in and day out and never grow bored. Bill Murray as an effeminate alien commander with sparkles is worth the price of admission alone."
The Sound of Music
"I completely geek out and get hopelessly lost in this epic Rodgers and Hammerstein film. First off, I adore Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer, and together onscreen? Well, it's magic. Their romance is wrought with awkward encounters, unforgettable glances and one-liners, and the sure, but slow, realization that they're utterly made for each other. I also happen to know the words to every single song (and yes, I belt them out like I'm a member of the Von Trapp family singers), and who can honestly tell me they weren't inspired by the curtains-as-clothing moment (don't you secretly want to DIY something this very minute?). This classic has everything I want in a movie: A bit of humor and drama, the majestic backdrop of Austria, over-the-top singing, and a love story. Perfection."
The Last Of The Mohicans
"Typically, I like more cerebral films — but, for my money, this is the best thing out there. It's rough, it's violent, romantic, sexy, heart-pounding, beautiful, relentless, melodramatic, soulful — a great ripper of a historical action film. The music and beautiful nature scenes alone are worth it. I also love that, for the most part, the same script could have been written in 1937 — though you wouldn't have had the great performance of Daniel Day Lewis, stoic, badass supporting turns by Wes Studi and Russell Means, and Michael Mann's uncanny, entirely modern use of light, shadow, pacing, and visual tension. It's the best, smartest film you can eat buffalo wings to. If you're not swept away by this, you just don't like movies all that much. Also, this
Stranger Than Paradise
"I'm going with Jim Jarmusch's early 80's Stranger Than Paradise. Our heroes were so god damn insouciant, total losers and so cool at the same time. It has an absurd story, crazy deadpan humor and stark ugly/beautiful cinematography. It took its time. The movie was a huge slacker just like the characters. Music by John Lurie and lots of Screamin' Jay Hawkins' 'I Put a Spell On You'. Favorite line uttered by Eva with a heavy Hungarian accent, 'Screamin' Jay is my main man.'"
"Such an inspirational story of a man's life journey and it always amazes me at how they captured historical events in such a great way."
A Room With A View
"I'm a superfan of any Merchant Ivory-produced film, but this one also happens to be based off my favorite book (of the same name) by E.M. Forster. Cinematic loveliness, picturesque countryside, Maggie Smith (!!), Judi Dench, philosophical wonderings, propriety and scandal, and a totally normal Helena Bonham Carter...it's pretty much the perfect English movie."
Lost In Translation
"I am obsessed with this movie. I've even gone as far as to nab a pink wig (like the one Charlotte wore) for all my far-off karaoke needs. There's something universal about being young and a little lost in the world — or, this romantic idea of sharing a strong connection with a stranger, in an even stranger setting. Sofia and Scarlett, reunite for the sequel, please!"
What A Girl Wants
"I realize I shouldn't be admitting I watch this movie, let alone that it's my favorite. But What A Girl Wants has a tendency of making my world stop when it's on. There may even be one or two responsibilities I've failed to meet simply because I turned the TV on and saw Amanda Bynes stumble her way through being a British aristocrat. I mean, who can't help but love a movie that involves international travel, romance, a good shopping montage, Colin Firth dancing in leather pants, and Amanda Bynes before her interesting choices of late? Probably the equally best and worst choice ever made was when my roommate bought us this DVD upon moving to New York or when I bought the soundtrack when I was 13. There are few things I loved in middle school and still love today, but, for better or worse, this movie has stood the test of time."
"There are very few things in this world that get it just right. For me, it's In 'n Out animal-style fries, Anne Lamott's Bird by Bird, and Mean Girls. This movie epitomizes my junior high life, except instead of being one of the Plastics, I was more of the likes of the girl who got punched by Regina George and said it was awesome. Okay, that never happened to me, but the burn book, the hierarchy of cafeteria tables, the candy grams — all spot on.
No matter how many years pass, I can't tear my eyes away from the slo-mo scene of Lindsay Lohan revealed as a Plastic with Missy Elliot's 'Pass That Dutch' playing. So fetch."