100 Funniest Movies (Part 9 ~ # 60-56)
# 60 ~ Better Off Dead
Everybody Wants Some!
From writer / director Savage Steve Holland comes the story of Lane Meyer, "a man who knows who to ski". John Cusack is of course the king of off-beat 80s movies but the real star here is Booger. Or Curtis Armstrong of "Moonlighting" and "Revenge of the Nerds" fame. He has some unbelievably movie moments in this movie which include the following classic lines.
Charles De Mar: This is pure snow! Do you have any idea what the street value of this mountain is?
Greendale is a bodaciously small town, Lane. A fly speck on the map - a rest stop on the way to the ski slope. I can't even get real drugs here!
I've been going to this high school for seven and a half years. I'm no dummy.
Go that way, really fast. If something gets in your way, turn.
I think I just froze the left half of my brain! [waves arm in circles and shouts] Look! I can't move my right arm!
Ah, come on! It's Christmas Eve! I could be home right now, drinking this monster eggnog my brother makes with lighter fluid.
Better Off Dead ~ 1985
Yes, Lane Meyer is willing to ski the K-2 in order to win back his girlfriend Beth. Foreign exchange students, Howard Cosell-loving dragsters and one determined paper boy won't stop him either. Props to David Ogden Stiers of M*A*S*H* fame for playing the poor father who tries to eat food that slides off the table. The 'shave her before you kiss her goodnight' part is my favorite. The way he just keeps laughing, I love that. Neighbor Ricky and his horrible Mom also have some great moments in this bona fide classic.
# 59 ~ Frankie & Johnny
From the great playwright Terrence McNally comes this romantic comedy with a lot of laughs. Garry Marshall is directing which means a juicy part for his favorite actor Hector Elizondo. They've been working together since back in the day and their most popular collaborations were for The Flamingo Kid with Matt Dillon and later in 1990 with Pretty Woman.
Frankie & Johnny ~ 1991
Just like with Better off Dead, it is the supporting players who get the best bits. Nathan Lane and Kate Nelligan practically steal this movie from Michelle Pfeiffer. The great Al Pacino does some REALLY bad dancing, but he also does some really smooth talking. The scenes in the restaurant are the best, featuring the "You Pour, I'll Bump" trick on grabby customers. The best is line when the cook Tino says,"That boy, all he thinks about p***y, I'll bet you open his head, you find little hairy triangles!"
# 58 ~ Crazy People
The Hello Guy
Boy are you guys in for a treat!
I know most of you haven't seen this movie and that is the good news for you. This movie will crack you up in six or seven ways. It's a Dudley Moore movie but unlike his other films, he is not at all relied on to keep the laughs coming. He is essentially the straight man in this one. Dudley Moore classic comedies that did not make this list are...
Crazy People ~ 1990
Paul Reiser is a friend and boss to Moore at the advertising agency they work at. When Moore's character Emory, comes in to work one day with the crazy idea that they should tell the truth to the consumer instead of lying all the time, he is quickly taken by his friend to a local nuthouse for some observation. However, while Emory is learning his life lessons in the asylum, his ads which accidentally go out to print, become a huge success and now the company wants him back to work but he doesn't want to leave. He fears it will impede his treatment, which we all know he never really needed to begin with. The fake ads are hysterical and so I wouldn't dare spoil them here. The Hello Song during the closing credits leaves you smiling with delight as you exit the theater.
p.s. A writer from Entertainment Weekly was so upset that he couldn't get this movie on DVD that he petitioned the distributor and promised a full review apon it's eventual release. A promise which he kept, much to my delight.
# 57 ~ Welcome To The Dollhouse
Todd Solondz has a got a really sick sense of humor. Happiness from 1998 is one of the most horrifying subject matters ever to be poked fun at. Storytelling from 2001 was equally sick and twisted. But before he went off the deep end of madness he did manage to capture pure delight in the cruelty of children. Not teenagers, mind you. That's been done. This movie is fearless and hilarious no matter how much we wanna look away...
Welcome To The Dollhouse ~ 1995
Normally, I would start a movie like this by saying, Meet Dawn Weiner. But you already have. We all have. That one kid at school that nobody wants to be. The tragically clueless Weiner-Dog is the biggest fashion victim / perspective fake-rape victim at school. ?? When you see it, you'll understand. Daniel Rey's song is perfect and so is everything else in this look at middle school sans the rose-colored glasses. If you don't wanna join the "Special People's Club" after this one is over, you're missing out!
# 56 ~ Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead
Gravity Question Court
Tom Stoppard's play about two insignificant characters from Hamlet is one of the most amazing pieces of comedic literature ever. The mere idea that Stoppard was so intrigued with these two small characters and their meaningless deaths in Hamlet that they caused him to write this still stuns me.
Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead ~ 1990
Two minor characters from the play, "Hamlet" stumble around unaware of their scripted lives and apparently unable to deviate from them, either. Seems simple enough. Wait, does it? Well, it's also a frank look at fate and destiny where the questions can be JUST as important as the answers. If you tried watching it and you didn't get it, try reading the play. It reads really funny too. But if you are looking for solid answers to simple questions don't even think about it. These two don't even know their own identities as relates to which one is Rosencrantz and which one is Guildenstern. You gotta work a little, but the laughs are there.
- 100 Greatest Movies of the 1980s
Platoon, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Tootsie, The Killing Fields, Sixteen Candles, Empire of the Sun, Big, The Empire Strikes Back, A Christmas Story, Victory, We're No Angels, Hoosiers, Do The Right Thing
- 100 Greatest Movies of the 90s
The Shawshank Redemption, Pulp Fiction, Goodfellas, Silence of the Lambs, etc.
- 100 Greatest Movies of the 2000s so far..
The Pianist, LOTR: The Fellowship of the Ring, Walk The Line, Cinderella Man, Kill Bill Vol. 1, Donnie Darko, Stranger Than Fiction, Finding Nemo, Hotel Rwanda, Elf
100) Being John Malkovich
99) Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure
98) Private Benjamin
97) American Beauty
96) Brewster's Millions
95) A League of Their Own
94) Defending Your Life
93) Swimming With Sharks
92) Harold and Maude
91) The Bad News Bears
90) Shaun of the Dead
89) Ciao Professore!
88) About A Boy
87) Nobody's Fool
85) The 40-Year-Old Virgin
83) The Snapper
81) We're No Angels
79) Much Ado About Nothing
78) Bottle Rocket
77) The Out-of-Towners
76) Finding Nemo
75) Pee Wee's Big Adventure
74) The Odd Couple
73) Party Girl
72) The Tall Guy
71) Say Anything...
70) After Hours
69) The Aristocrats
66) Bad Santa
65) Trading Places
64) The Money Pit
63) Private Parts
62) Young Frankenstein
61) Back to the Future
60) Better Off Dead
59) Frankie & Johnny
58) Crazy People
57) Welcome To The Dollhouse
56) Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead
More by this Author
Before I reveal the next 10 films, I'd just like to explain my intent here. I am not ranking these films in order of their greatness, nor am I saying that these are the best films ever, this is purely entertainment.
Ten more classics from the Funktual Library of Films! If you are as frustrated as me at Blockbuster/Netflix, why not go retro and see the good stuff you've missed?
This epic list was inspired by my childhood radio station WLIR-WDRE 92.7 fm on Long Island. Their mantra was 'Dare To be Different' and they were introducing new bands every single week. Let's begin.