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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number One

#1 — Raging Bull (Martin Scorsese, 1980) By his own account, Martin Scorsese thought Raging Bull could be his final film. His previous fiction feature, 1977’s New York, New York, was widely considered a disaster. A costly “film noir musical,”

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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Two

#2 — Tootsie (Sydney Pollack, 1982) Whenever I write about comedies–especially in the context of celebrating them as prime cinematic achievements–I always seem to get to the end of the piece and realize that I’ve almost completely ignored a key

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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Three

#3 — Raiders of the Lost Ark (Steven Spielberg, 1981) Just for fun, consider where Steven Spielberg was professionally when Raiders of the Lost Ark was released in the summer of 1981. He had directed four previous feature films, the

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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Four

#4 — Hannah and Her Sisters (Woody Allen, 1986) It’s perhaps foolhardy to make any sort of definitive statements about a favorite film in a directorial career as lengthy, prolific and studded with great works as that of Woody Allen.

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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Five

#5 — Ran (Akira Kurosawa, 1985) Sadly, it will happen no more, but everyone should have an Akira Kurosawa masterwork show up new in theaters at precisely the time when they’re crossing over from seeing movies as entertainment to viewing

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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Six

#6 — Broadcast News (James L. Brooks, 1987) By the time I was in a college film class in the early nineties, the textbook was already citing the James L. Brooks screenplay for Broadcast News as a ideal example of

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Top Fifty Films of the 80s — Number Seven

#7 — The Big Chill (Lawrence Kasdan, 1983) All through this process, I’ve deliberately avoided treating the countdown too much like a countdown. What I mean by that is that I didn’t want to go too hung up on where

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