2. The Shawshank Redemption (1994, Written and Directed by Frank Darabont, based on the short story by Stephen King)- Just really gorgeous storytelling from beginning to end. Favorite scene: Red plays the harmonica (the symbolism that can be found in that tiny snippet just makes my head explode with giddyness). Favorite line(s): Red: "I find I'm so excited, I can barely sit still or hold a thought in my head. I think it's the excitement only a free man can feel, a free man at the start of a long journey whose conclusion is uncertain. I hope I can make it across the border. I hope to see my friend and shake his hand. I hope the Pacific is as blue as it has been in my dreams. I hope."
3. Shakespeare In Love (1998, Written by Marc Norman and Tom Stoppard, Directed by John Madden)- William Shakespeare meets his muse and writes Romeo & Juliet. Delightfully witty and besides, it stars Joseph Fiennes. Need I say more? Favorite scene: There's a scene where an inspired Will writes pages and pages and pages and, as a writer, I love it, but I'm going with the moment he convinced Ned Allyn to perform the part of Mercutio by telling him that the play is actually called "Mercutio." Favorite line: Henslow: "No, no, we haven't the time. Talk prose."
4. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (2001, 2002, 2003, Written by Peter Jackson, Fran Walsh and Phillipa Boyens, based on the novels by J.R.R. Tolkien. Directed by Peter Jackson)- Yeah, I know. I'm totally cheating by including all three of these films into one spot on this list but it's damn near impossible to watch one without watching the other two so I'm doing it. Favorite scene: I gotta go with the scene at the end of the trilogy where everyone in Gondor where Aragorn's all, "My friends, you bow to no man" and everyone bows down to the hobbits. Favorite line: Pippin: "Where are we going?"
As a bonus, I'm going to include this clip of Gollum accepting an MTV movie award for Best Virtual Performance. It's hysterical.
5. Amadeus (1984, Written by Peter Shaffer. Directed by Milos Forman)- This movie tells the story of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart through the eyes of his jealous rival, court composer Salierai. It's frakking amazing. Favorite Scene: Toward the end, when Salierai helps a dying Mozart write the La Crimosa. It's a perfect example of how music can take a scene to a completely new level. Favorite line: Every time Tom Hulce (who played Mozart) giggles and/or laughs. If you've seen the movie, you know what I'm talking about.
6. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975, written by the Monty Python guys. Directed by Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones)- King Arthur and the knights of the round table go on a quest to find the holy grail. Hilarity ensues. I created a lesson plan with the sole purpose of showing this movie in my class. It was a good lesson plan too. Favorite scene: Damn it, I can't pick a favorite scene. Maybe the part with the Black Knight. Favorite line: Black Knight: "It's only a flesh wound!"
7. Dead Poets Society (1989, Written by Tom Schulman. Directed by Peter Weir)- An English teacher inspires his students to love literature and to think for themselves and challenge society. It all goes horribly wrong but, of course, but it's a damn impressive film. I liked showing this one in school too. Favorite scene: The O Captain My Captain part at the end where Ethan Hawke stands on his desk. Frakking Awe. Some. Favorite line: Keating: "No matter what anybody tells you, words and ideas can change the world."
8. Moulin Rouge! (2001, Written by Baz Lurhman and Craig Pearce. Directed by Baz Lurhman)- My love for the movie really kicked in at about the forty five minute mark. Before that, it was this strange spectacle I didn't know quite what to make of, but after that mark (shortly following the bizarre rendition of "Like A Virgin"), I fell in love with this movie. Favorite Scene: The Roxanne number. Favorite line: Another movie where I don't really have a favorite line.
9. Singing In The Rain (1952, Written by Adolph Green and Betty Comden. Directed by Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly)- Hilarious and awesome. Filled with one liner after another. Plus, there's all that iconic singing and dancing. I was going to post a clip of some of this iconic singing and dancing (specifically Donald O'Conner performing "Make 'Em Laugh") but I'm having a hell of a time finding a YouTube video that offers embedding. If you're at all interested in movie musicals, you should definitely check this one out. But if you're into movie musicals, there's a good chance you already have.10. The Lion King (1994, Apparently written by 29 people whose name I'm not going to list here and directed by Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff)- I love Disney movies. Well, most Disney movies but The Lion King has got to be at the top of that list. It makes you sing, it makes you laugh and then it makes you freaking cry. It just so happens that I like that in a movie. Favorite scene: Sure, the immediate aftermath makes you cry but that wildebeest stampede is pretty frickin' awesome animation. Favorite line: The hyenas: "No king, no king! Lalalalalala!" (It's the delivery.)