Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Interesting Patterns in My 100 Favorite Movies

So I've been pondering my lists of 100 Favorite Movies that I've just posted, and I decided to just point out some interesting stats, patterns, whatever.  Interesting to me, anyway :-)

What Actors Do I Love?

8 Harrison Ford movies (The Fugitive, Sabrina, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Star Wars:  Return of the Jedi, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars:  A New Hope, Star Wars:  The Force Awakens, Witness)

6 John Wayne movies  (The Sons of Katie Elder, Rio Bravo, Operation Pacific, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, North to Alaska, The Longest Day)

4 Hugh Jackman movies -- and all as the same character!!! (X-Men:  Days of Future Past, X2:  X-Men United, X-Men, X-Men Origins: Wolverine)

4 Maureen O'Hara movies (Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation, The Rare Breed, The Parent Trap, The Black Swan)

4 James Stewart movies -- (Mr. Hobbs Takes a Vacation, The Rare Breed, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, Destry Rides Again)

3 Bobby Darin movies (Gunfight in Abilene, Hell is for Heroes, Captain Newman M.D.)

3 Glenn Ford movies (3:10 to Yuma, Blackboard Jungle, The Fastest Gun Alive)

3 Dana Andrews movies (Laura, The Best Years of Our Lives, State Fair)

3 Alan Ladd movies (Shane, Whispering Smith, This Gun for Hire)

3 Rudolph Valentino movies (The Sheik, Moran of the Lady Letty, The Son of the Sheik)

3 Russell Crowe movies (Master and Commander:  The Far Side of the World, The Quick and the Dead, LA Confidential)

3 Steve McQueen movies (The Magnificent Seven, The Great Escape, Hell is for Heroes)

3 Tom Hanks movies (Toy Story, You've Got Mail, Apollo 13)

Right now, my top 3 favorite actors are John Wayne, Hugh Jackman, and Harrison Ford.  So that meshes pretty well with who I have the most favorites from.

What Genres Do I Love?

21 Dramas
19 Westerns
13 Action/Adventure movies
9 WWII-related movies
6 Comedies
6 Fantasy movies
5 Superhero movies
4 Musicals
4 Rom-coms
3 Sci-fi movies
3 Film noir

What Decades Do I Love?

3 from the 1920s
3 from the 1930s
8 from the 1940s
12 from the 1950s
17 from the 1960s
4 from the 1970s
14 from the 1980s
17 from the 1990s
13 from the 2000s
8 from the 2010s

Conclusion:  the 1970s are best ignored, for the most part.

What Ratings Do I Favor?

18 Not Rated
24 Approved
6 G
22 PG
22 PG-13
6 R

You probably know this, but for those who don't, movies didn't used to have ratings.  In the 1920s and early '30s, there was no rating system at all.  Individual theaters and the towns or cities they were in decided what was appropriate for their audiences.  In 1934, the Hays Code went into effect, and from then on until the mid-1950s, movies who didn't pass muster didn't get distributed.  In the mid-1950s, that changed to movies being labeled "Approved" if they passed the code, but others did get distributed without a rating.  In the late 1960s, that was changed to the MPAA rating system that was basically like what we have now, except the ratings were G, M, R, and X.  In the mid-1970s, that was changed to G, GP, R, and X.  And in the 1980s, we got G, PG, PG-13, R, and NC-17.  Which means that movies until the mid 1980s that we would now consider PG-13 were either PG or R.  Which can be a little confusing when you deal with a lot of old movies like I do, so just thought I'd explain what all those Not Rated and Approved things are -- those are old movies!

Oh, and for those of you who are now wondering which movies on my list were R so you can avoid them, they're Conspiracy Theory, Hamlet, Tombstone, Witness, The Quick and the Dead, and L.A. Confidential.  Now you know.


  1. MORE lists??!

    I am ashamed. Your lists and categories put me to shame. ;)

    My favorite movies tend to either... make me think about something in a new way, or simply delight my soul. Though I will admit, the vast majority ARE costume dramas. ;)

    1. Charity, did I mention I love lists? Lists, lists everywhere!

      In order to love a movie, I have to want to hang out with its characters and be their friends. Simple -- and complex -- as that.

  2. Harrison Ford is pretty cool :-)

    When you say "Dramas," what do you mean, exactly? I don't quite understand (sorry). Like, which movies would you categorize as "dramas" as opposed to, say, "Westerns" or "comedies" or stuff of that nature?

    1. Jessica, he IS. He was my second-favorite actor for a couple of decades, though he's fallen to third-favorite now, which is still Very Important.

      Heh. "Dramas" is my way of saying "movie just about normal people doing stuff," or "not a comedy, not a war movie, not a western, not an action movie, not a musical, not a kid movie, not noir." So let's see... from my list, I called these Dramas:

      The Best Years of Our Lives
      The Sheik
      Moran of the Lady Letty
      Anne of Green Gables
      The Man Without a Face
      North & South
      Apollo 13
      The Sting
      Rocky III
      Captain Newman, MD
      Jane Eyre
      Amazing Grace

      Does that make more sense? I have my movies arranged by genre kind of like you were at a video store...

    2. I get it now! So, basically, a "people story" that doesn't fit into any of the other special categories. That makes sense! :-)

      I think most of my favorite movies fit into that category as well . . . "Bernadette," "Sense and Sensibility," "Thirteen Days," "Seabiscuit." The only one that really doesn't is "The Force Awakens," actually :-)

  3. You're lists make me think of my Dad. He makes a database for everything. His move database is ridiculously detailed but is handy. Personally I don't think Conspiracy Theory should be rated R but maybe that's just me. I just didn't think it was gory/intense enough and I don't remember too much language. Thoughts?

    1. Lois, I once had a movie database, but it got unwieldy :-) It's true that I'm perilously fond of lists!

      Yes, I tend to forget that Conspiracy Theory is R. Imdb.com says it's for "some violence," so I'm guessing it's because of the torture scene? But it really feels more like PG-13 to me too. There are a handful of bad words, but not the F word. I actually looked up every single one of these movies to see what they were rated, and was startled to see CS was R.

    2. I also don't get why this version of Hamlet (the Ethan Hawke 2000 one) is R either -- also for violence, but there's just one scene with guns and it's not all that gory. Sometimes the MPAA makes little sense to me.

  4. Harrison Ford is just too cool. ;)
    This was very interesting! And I didn't know that about the ratings - well! You learn something every day. :D
    ~Miss Meg

    1. Miss Meg, I wish I'd known the history of ratings when I was a kid, because every now and then my family would get a movie rated PG that was from the late '70s or early '80s and discover it had content issues, and be reeeeeally confused, not knowing that PG-13 didn't exist until Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom came around and Spielberg suggested they create an in-between-PG-and-R rating for movies like it.

  5. HARRISON FORDDDDDDDD. I swear, my crush on that man grows bigger and bigger every day AND DID YOU HEAR THAT THEY'RE DOING A FIFTH INDY MOVIE???? (As long as it has Shia Lebauf and Karen Allen in it as well, I'm happy.) I really want to watch Witness - a movie for Vidangel. ;)

    Ditto for Tombstone...the soundtrack is FANTASTIC, so I really want to see the images that go along with all that loveliness.


    1. Eva, have you seen Regarding Henry yet? I melt. Melt into a puddle of goo. Has just a smidge of objectionableness, so not for your younger sibs, but oh, it's so sweet. (And Harrison Ford's daughter-character is named Rachel in it, so I get to hear him say my name over and over. I also love that about Witness...)

      And yes, Witness is awesome with a little bit of editing. When I was a kid, my parents taped a lot of movies off TV, so they were already censored somewhat, and my parents could easily remove any scenes that might have been TV-acceptable but not family-friendly. That's the version of Witness I grew up with, and the same goes for movies like Tombstone and The Quick and the Dead.

      Tombstone is pretty clean, aside from the F word used just once or twice and some violence. Should be easy to clean up, and I can't WAIT to hear what you think of it. It's kind of odd, though -- people kind of either love it for its style or are annoyed by it, and I have no idea which you will be. I was 17 when I first saw it (the off-TV version), and I've loved it ever since, so you might too! We shall see...

    2. Nope, I haven't. The only Harrison Ford movies I've seen to date are the Indy movies, The Fugitive, Age of Adaline, Ender's Game, and Star Wars: A New Hope (the last because, even though my family isn't into SW, my dad wanted to re-watch it for nostalgic reasons - it was the first thing I saw Harrison Ford in and Han Solo was tied with Obi Wan for favorite character). There are soooo many I still have to watch.

      Whenever I get around to watching Tombstone, I'll definitely let you know what I think. :)

    3. Well, you're two up on me, Eva. I haven't seen Age of Adaline or Ender's Game yet.

    4. Age of Adaline was pretty great - Harrison Ford was the best part, in my opinion, but I may just be biased. ;) And they got a crazily talented guy to play the younger version of his character. Sooooo cool. (It's the guy in this Youtube video - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rG9SAq2kLFY) The casting directors discovered his spot-on imitations of Harrison Ford on Youtube and they signed him up.

      Ender's Game was an awful adaption of the book. I only watch it for HF these days.

  6. Yay for Hugh Jackman movies! Love those X-Men films and in particular, Logan. :)

    Also, it's been WAY too long since I've watched State Fair. Someday I should re-watch it because as I remember it's good.

    1. Rissi, I must admit I wore black for several days when Hugh Jackman announced he would be sheathing Wolvie's claws for good after one last movie. But at least I'll be able to watch the 7 movies he's played Wolvie in over and over and over and over :-)

      State Fair is very sweet and fresh and lovely. I'm thinking of showing it to my kids one of these days because it has a bit of the same feel as Meet Me in St. Louis, which my daughters love and my son tolerates.

  7. Loved your breakdown! Now, out of curiosity, I may have to add the extra info in to see how mine group. 18 movies are on both our lists. The obvious ones, of course. :-D But it's really neat to see those other 82 that are different.

    1. Ooooh, 18? Hmmmmmmm. Now I want to go through and figure out which 18. Obviously Raiders and Star Wars and TBOTFA and LR...

    2. 19, actually. I miscounted the first time. :-D Should I post my list?

  8. You're inspiring me to make my own list. I love stats like these! :D

    1. Sarah, that would be fun! The patterns were really cool to find.

  9. Harrison Ford!!! John Wayne!!! Jimmy Stewart! You and I both have a thing for elderly/deceased gentleman actors ;)

    I want to see The Fugitive...

    1. I'm going to overlook the whole "elderly" thing, Olivia. You make it sound like I go about robbing wheelchairs! Hee.

      The Fugitive is marvelous. See it!!!


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