{life list} AFI's 100 Movies - 90 to 100

We're slowly but surely chipping away at my Life List goal of watching all 100 films on the AFI Top 100 list. We're rating each one as we go, and decided not to look at the other's review before writing our own to make it a bit more fun. Here's what we thought of 90 through 100...

{#100 - Ben-Hur}

What Jared thought... B+. Quite a long movie, but Judah Ben Hur is pretty badass. The sheer production and amount of extras for a movie from the 50s is very impressive.

What I thought... B. Oh, Judah Ben-Hur. Your story is good, but so, so long. The film itself was impressive, given the scale and action and year in which it was filmed, but it could have easily been an hour shorter.

{#99 - Toy Story}

What Jared thought... A. Obviously a classic and was mind-blowing at the time, being the first feature-length Pixar movie. Great storyline, characters, etc. Basically everything is great.

What I thought... A. Toy Story is a classic, and it's the first in a long line of Pixar films that so brilliantly combine a great story with cutting edge animation. I loved it the first time I saw it, and it was just as great all these years later.

{#98 - Yankee Doodle Dandy}

What Jared thought... B-/C+. Honestly don't understand the reason why this is considered one of the top 100 films of all time. I feel like any movie on this list, regardless of knowing any background or not, you should be able to just watch and say, "That was a great movie!" I've watched musicals and whatnot with Sinatra or Bob Hope from that era, and I think any of the ones I've seen would match right up with this one.

What I thought... C. The only thing that saved this movie for me was the back story - if I didn't know that it was based on a true story, or that James Cagney was basically the James Gandolfini of his time and for him to do a movie musical was kind of ridiculous (making his performance all the more impressive) - this would have gotten an even lower grade from me. I love musicals, but there are much better than this (hello, Newsies!) and I'm not sure why this even made the Top 100.

{#97 - Blade Runner}

What Jared thought... B. Very strange movie, but the special effects made for a very realistic-looking world of the future.

What I thought... B. I have to preface this by saying I'm not super into sci-fi, but the story here was interesting. Harrison Ford and the special effects (which I could usually care less about, but were very impressive for early 80s) saved this one for me.

{#96 - Do The Right Thing}

What Jared thought... B. I don't like Spike Lee (it has to do with a run-in at a Bruce Hornsby concert at the Blue Note in NYC…don't ask), but I did think this was a good movie. I have a hard time saying I enjoyed watching it, because I feel like it's purposely a rather hard movie to watch, but it was well acted and written.

What I thought... B. I liked this move more than I thought I would. It was thought provoking, if a little film school self-indulgent.

{#95 - The Last Picture Show}

What Jared thought... B. I'm showing my cinematic ignorance here, but I feel like this could have just as easily been a play, rather than a movie. It was more depressing than I thought it would be, but I did like it.

 What I thought... B-. This was just okay for me. The acting was superb, and it was great seeing a young Jeff Bridges (who I love) do his thing, the story just didn't hook me.

{#94 - Pulp Fiction}

What Jared thought... A. I absolutely love this movie. Samuel L Jackson is nothing short of brilliant, in a role that pretty much defined him (in my opinion). I've watched this movie at least a few dozen times since it came out and I enjoy every bit of it, except that I've always disliked the song that Mia puts on before she OD's. But that's a very small criticism for a great movie.

What I thought... B+. I hadn't seen this in years and it has held up as simply a great f-ing movie.

{#93 - The French Connection}

What Jared thought... N/A. I honestly do not remember watching this movie, so I couldn't have liked it very much. I know Gene Hackman was in it, and he was great as Lex Luthor and in Unforgiven, so maybe I should just go with a B and call it a day.

What I thought... B. I had to watch this in film class in college and remembered nothing of it. I should have tried harder to stay awake back then because it was actually a pretty good movie… a good and gritty detective movie like they rarely seem to make these days.

{#92 - Goodfellas}

What Jared thought... A+. I've loved this movie since the first time I saw it in high school. I've read the book (which I actually think is better) as well, and the movie definitely does it justice.  It's eminently quotable, and the acting is off the charts great.  Ma, I can't leave it there, it's a sin.

What I thought... A. I don't know why this is ranked so low on this list. Such a fantastic movie… brilliant acting, and I'm a sucker for a good sympathetic antagonist like Henry Hill.

{#91 - Sophie's Choice}

What Jared thought... B/B-. To quote Seinfeld, "Oh that Meryl Streep, she's such a phony!". A very good, if utterly heartbreaking movie. I feel like the middle part dragged out and then all of a sudden WHAMO, they go for the gut punch. Maybe that was intentional, maybe not.

What I thought... B. Ugh. WRECKED. That is how I felt after this movie. Completely and utterly wrecked. I was still crying when the movie ended and I kept saying to Jared, "It's just so awful! Can you imagine?" I cried the next day just thinking about it. Aside from the soul destroying story, this movie is yet another example of why Meryl Streep is the master and all other actresses must bow before her. She's simply flawless.

{#90 - Swing Time}

What Jared thought... B+. Fun movie, great dancing, and a great story. Not much else to say.

What I thought... B+. I could watch Fred Astaire dance all day. I think there's something so fascinating about watching someone do with great ease what you are so completely incapable of doing. I have two left feet and the only time I'm relaxed enough to look halfway decent dancing is when I'm quite drunk. Anyway... this was a fun movie and I found it impossible not to be charmed by the legendary Fred and Ginger.

Have you seen any of these movies? I'd love to know what you thought!