Tuesday, November 19, 2019

My Ten Favorite Harrison Ford Movies

For more than a decade, Harrison Ford was second only to John Wayne in my list of favoritest of favorite actors.  Though Hugh Jackman and then Alan Ladd eventually supplanted him in that spot, he's still my #4, and I will not cease to hold him dear, of that I'm certain.

Prompted by Eva ranking all the Harrison Ford movies she's seen over at Coffee, Classics, and Craziness, I hereby present my ten favorite Harrison Ford films.  Some of these, I've seen so often, I've got them memorized.  In fact, the last two are the only ones where I can't quote basically the whole movie right along with the actors.

As always, titles are linked to my reviews where applicable.

1. The Fugitive (1993)

Dr. Richard Kimble (Harrison Ford) is wrongly convicted of his wife's murder, escapes, and goes hunting for the real killer while U.S. Marshal Sammy Gerard (Tommy Lee Jones) hunts for him. My second-favorite movie of all time.

2. Sabrina (1995)

When Sabrina (Julia Ormond) returns from Paris, suddenly dazzling instead of dowdy, her father's employer (Harrison Ford) pretends to woo her to prevent his younger brother (Greg Kinnear) from having a fling with her. A lot sweeter than it sounds, and I much prefer it to the 1954 original because the cast has better chemistry and the whole thing works better.  I wrote a Femnista article about it a few years back, which you can read here.

3. Witness (1985)

Detective John Book (Harrison Ford) goes undercover to protect a little Amish boy who is the only witness to a murder. Taut and sweet at the same time, and one of the very, very few R-rated movies I own.

4. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

Archaeologist/adventurer Dr. Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) tries to keep the Ark of the Covenant away from the Nazis.  One of the finest adventure movies ever made.  I had the deep joy of seeing this on the big screen a few months ago, and it was even more spectacular there than I had hoped.

5. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)

What's better than one Dr. Jones?  Two Dr. Joneses!  Indy and his dad (Sean Connery) try to keep the Holy Grail away from the Nazis.  The chemistry between the two of them is as perfect as possible.  This movie makes me laugh so much.

6. Return of the Jedi (1983)

Luke and Leia rescue Han, Luke and Han rescue Leia, Lando and R2-D2 rescue everyone at once... and that's only the first sequence, which happens to be my most favoritest part of all the Star Wars films. In fact, I've seen the first 40 minutes of this more often than any other segment of any Star Wars movies.

7. Star Wars: A New Hope (1977)

An idealist (Mark Hamill), a princess (Carrie Fisher), a smuggler (Harrison Ford), and an aging hero (Alec Guinness) help the Rebel Alliance take out the Empire's greatest weapon. What can I say about it that hasn't been said a billion times before?  I call it Star Wars in my head, and always have to fumble around to find the title A New Hope because, until the prequels, it was never called that.  At all.  By anyone I ever knew.  It's just Star Wars.  The rest are Other Star Wars movies.

8. The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

Luke learns the truth about his parentage, Han and Leia try not to fall in love, and the Empire tries to figure out what hit them. I like half of this movie a lot (the Han + Leia parts) and am bored by the other half.

9. 42 (2013)

Branch Rickey (Harrison Ford) hires Jackie Robinson (Chadwick Boseman) to play baseball for the Brooklyn Dodgers, making him the first black man to play in the all-white baseball league.  It's one of the best biopics I've ever seen, and possibly the best acting I've seen from Harrison Ford.

10. Air Force One (1997)

A terrorist (Gary Oldman) hijacks the presidential airplane midflight, taking the President (Harrison Ford) and his family hostage. The President is not amused.  He spends the rest of the film trying to get the terrorist off his plane while keeping his family safe.  Thrilling heroics abound.  Another of the very, very few R-rated movies I own.

Okay, that's my list.  Have you seen these?  Do you love these?  Do you love other Harrison Ford movies better?  Let's discuss!


  1. I love all of these!! (with the exception of Witness, which I haven't seen). My parents were big Harrison Ford fans back in the day (it's no coincidence my brother's name is, uh, Harrison ;) ) so he's always been one of the staple actors around our house.

    Also, my uncle got to be in Air Force One, which is pretty neat! He plays one of the military personnel who ends up getting sucked from the plane, lol.

    1. Hayden, I was lucky to grow up when they showed movies on network TV and edited the content to make them more family-friendly, so my parents taped that version of Witness off TV when I was a teen, and I could watch it. I miss those days.

      Anyway, wow. Your parents are way more hardcore fans than I am!

      And how cool your uncle is in that movie! Wow!

  2. My favorite Harrison Ford movie would definitely be The Force Awakens, I think. That's the SW movie I like Han Solo best in.

    1. Katie, it's good, it's just... I can't love it as a Harrison Ford film, per se. It's so sad. Too sad. Ouch.

    2. That makes sense, for sure.

      The thing is, I didn't exactly LIKE Han as a person before TFA, but TFA made me see him differently because he was more mature and had more wisdom, and so I enjoyed that.

      (Even though it was really sad to see him die afterwards :-( Screw you, Kylo!!!)

  3. How fun! Particularly as I've been watching some new-to-me Harrison Ford movies lately. He's on my favorite actor list as well. I would, of course, have a different list, though we overlap on 5 movies (just in different spots on our respective lists) :-D I've seen all the movies on your list except 42. That's the one I started but never did finish. One of these days, I'll revisit that one!

    My top ten would be:

    1. Raiders of the Lost Ark
    2. Temple of Doom
    3. Empire Strikes Back
    4. Force Awakens
    5. Cowboys & Aliens
    6. Fugitive
    7. Frisco Kid
    8. Star Wars
    9. Expendables 3
    10. Witness

    1. DKoren, I still need to see Expendables 3!!! It's the only one on your list I haven't seen. I've got a couple of his films on my shelf waiting to get watched. Kind of waiting around for his birthday in July.

      I hope you finish 42 sometime, even though it's not exactly your kind of movie.

    2. 42 was just too stressful to sit through. I think I'll just need to read the plot ahead of time, and then I can watch it because I will know what happens.
      Expendables 3 is so much fun. And HF is so happy and having a great time in it. He makes me grin so much.

  4. I really want to see Sabrinia because I loved the 1954 version and want to compare the two. The only ones that I've seen are Star Wars and Indiana Jones...predictable, right? The other ones sound really good, too. It's funny because as much as we try, we can't convince my sister that Han Solo and Indiana Jones are the same actor. Another funny thing is that both of my parents have seen Harrison Ford in real life, but at different times!

    1. MC, well, I hope you can see the newer Sabrina sometime, then! I infinitely prefer it to the older one, but that is not everyone's reaction, hee.

      Han and Indy do have very different looks, so I can see that someone might initially be skeptical. And how cool your parents have both seen him in real life!!!

  5. Air Force One is one of my favorite movies! Harrison just nailed it as the President.

  6. I didn't know Air Force One was R-rated...I remember seeing it with my parents on TV years ago, so I guess that must have been an edited version!

  7. Star Wars only makes #7? I would have put it at#2. And Last Crusade as #1.

    1. Quiggy, well, yeah. It's a list of favorites, which mean how much do I love them, not a list of his best movies. Everyone's favorites list is different!

  8. I need to watch more of his movies.

    1. There's no way I'd ever discourage that line of thinking, Skye ;-)

  9. I love Sabrina. :D My love for it keeps growing, actually. It's such a cozy, happy movie. *hugs it*

    Action/thriller is not my genre, but it WAS pretty awesome to see Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones opposite each other in The Fugitive. ;) One of the scenes that's stuck in my memory the most is the one in the tunnel, when Kimball growls, "I did not kill my wife!" and Jones just replies, "I don't care!" XD

    I really need to watch the Indiana Jones movies all the way through, in order, one of these days. I've seen bits and pieces several times, but I need to just bite the bullet and commit. :-P

    1. Olivia, I love Sabrina so much :-) My whole family does. When it first came to the video stores, we rented it every week for like three months until it came out to buy in stores. Wonderful film.

      Ford and Jones are a beautiful combo, and I really wish they'd done more together. Even now. Somebody, just make another movie with them. They could be Crusty Old Guys leading a band of settlers into the frontier or something.

      Anyway. Ahem. Yes, that moment is awesome, especially when paired with the bit at the very end, which is my favorite Sammy Gerard moment, when they're in the back of the cop car, and he puts ice on Kimball's hand, and Kimball says, "I thought you didn't care," and Gerard says. "I don't," and grins, and adds, "Don't tell anybody." GAH, now I just want to go watch that movie. (It is my second-favorite movie EVER.)

      Yeah, seeing the Indy movies is sort of a big piece of cultural literacy at this point.


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