Title and RatingRelease DateRunning TimeBudgetGrossCritical Reception
27 DressesJanuary 10, 2008 111 min.$30 million$160 millionA romantic comedy about a serial bridesmaid. Katherine Heigl is eminently likeable as the bright, sharp-witted but downtrodden Jane, and sparks fly when she and James Marsden share the screen. The humour's lively and just irreverent enough to make you laugh without offending your mum - Anna Smith, BBC
About a Boy ***May 17, 2002105 min.20 million GBP$125 million +We have all the action heroes and Method script-chewers we need right now, but the Cary Grant department is understaffed, and Hugh Grant shows here that he is more than a star, he is a resource. - Roger Ebert
Air Force One ***July 25, 1997124 min.$85 million$315 millionHarrison Ford is one of the most likable and convincing of movie stars, and he almost pulls off the impossible in "Air Force One" he almost saves the movie. Here is a good example of how star power can breathe new life into old cliches — and "Air Force One" is rich with cliches - Roger Ebert. And chief villain, Gary Oldman did not stay in character between the scenes. The director later said he called the filming experience "Air Force Fun" because of how comedic and genial Oldman would be off-screen. He also said that Oldman would suddenly return to the menacing film persona like a shot.
Almost Famous ***½September 13, 2000122 min.$60 million$47 millionOh, what a lovely film. I was almost hugging myself while I watched it. "Almost Famous" is funny and touching in so many different ways. - Roger Ebert
American Graffiti ***½August 11, 1973108 min.$775 thousand$118 millionOne of the most influential of all teen films, American Graffiti is a funny, nostalgic, and bittersweet look at a group of recent high school grads' last days of innocence." Roger Ebert praised the film for "not only [being] a great movie but a brilliant work of historical fiction; no sociological treatise could duplicate the movie's success in remembering exactly how it was to be alive (in 1962) at that cultural instant."
The American President ***November 17, 1995114 min.$62 million$108 millionThe movie is, above all, a witty and warm romance - Roger Ebert
America's Sweethearts **½July 20, 2001102 min.$48 million$138 million +Critic's consensus was "Despite its famous cast, the movie lacks sympathetic characters and is only funny in spurts. Roger Ebert gave it 2 out of 4 stars."
Analyse This ***March 5, 1999103 min.$80 million$177 millionA comic situation like this depends on casting to elevate it from the environs of sitcom, and "Analyze This" has Robert De Niro and Billy Crystal to bring richness to the characters - Roger Ebert
Anna and the King **½December 17, 1999149 min.$75 million$39 million USMostly fictionalized account from Anna Leonowens memoirs click here for details. Jodie Foster is not only a wonderful actor but an intelligent one. At times we aren't looking at a 19th century schoolmarm, but a modern woman biting her tongue. Chow Yun-Fat is good enough as the king and certainly less self-satisfied than Yul Brynner - Roger Ebert.
Annie Get Your Gun ***May 17, 1950107 min.$4 million$8 millionAfter meeting with initial success upon its release in 1950, the film has spent most of the last 30 years (1973-2000) in legal limbo, never released on video and pulled from television in the early '70s. All claims settled, its long-delayed video debut doesn't reveal a lost masterpiece, but it does return a perfectly charming musical to the public - Keith Phipps
Apollo 13 ***½June 30 1995140 min.$62 million$355 millionApollo 13 was widely praised by critics as a compelling dramatization of a true engineering event during the "Space Race". Notable for its accuracy, it recounts a near-fatal mission in 1970, the year following Neil Armstrong's historic first steps on the moon.
As Good as it Gets ***½December 25, 1997139 min.$50 million$314 millionPraise for the film was not uniform among critics. Roger Ebert gave "As Good As it Gets," three stars (out of four) and called the film a "compromise, a film that forces a smile onto material that doesn't wear one easily," writing that the film drew "back to story formulas," but had good dialog and performances.
Australian Idol
The Final 12
September 6, 2004170 min.N/AN/A 
Back to the Future ***July 3, 1985116 min.$19 million$381 millionEbert commented producer "Steven Spielberg is emulating the great authentic past of Classical Hollywood cinema, who specialized in matching the right director (Robert Zemeckis) with the right project."
Back to the Future Part II **November 22, 1989108 min.$40 million$332 million"Part II," for all of its craziness, lacks the genuine power of the original. The story of the '85 film has real heart to it: If McFly didn't travel from 1985 to 1955 and arrange for his parents to have their first date, he might not even exist. The time travel in that film involved his own emotional confrontation with his parents as teenagers. "Part II," on the other hand, is mostly just zaniness and screwball jokes. But on that level, it's fun. - Roger Ebert
Back to the Future Part III ***½May 25, 1990118 min.$40 million$245 millionThe one thing that remains constant in all of the "Back to the Future" movies, and which I especially like, is a sort of bittersweet, elegiac quality involving romance and time. - Roger Ebert
Bend It Like Beckham ***April 11, 2002112 min.3 million$77 millionJust about perfect as a teenage coming-of-age comedy. What makes it special is the bubbling energy of the cast and the warm joy with which Gurinder Chadha, the director and co-writer, tells her story. - Roger Ebert
Bride and PrejudiceFebruary 11, 2004111 min.$7 million$7 million USThis is not a Bollywood movie, but a Hollywood musical comedy incorporating Bollywood elements. Chadha's characters burst into song and dance at the slightest provocation, backed up by a dance corps that materializes with the second verse and disappears at the end of the scene. That's Bollywood. - Roger Ebert
Bridget Jones's Diary ***April 13, 200197 min.$26 million$282 millionBridget Jones's Diary , a beloved book about a heroine both lovable and human, has been made against all odds into a funny and charming movie that understands the charm of the original, and preserves it. - Roger Ebert
Bridget Jones: The Edge of ReasonNovember 16, 2004108 min.$70 million$263 million"Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason" is a jolly movie and I smiled pretty much all the way through, but it doesn't shift into high with a solid thunk the way "Bridget Jones' Diary" did. In the first movie, things happened to Bridget. In the sequel, Bridget happens to things. - Roger Ebert
Bruce Almighty ***May 23, 2003101 min.$81 million$485 millionBruce Almighty is a charmer, the kind of movie where Bruce learns that while he may not ever make a very good God, the experience may indeed make him a better television newsman - Roger Ebert
The Buddy Holly Story ***½May 18, 1978113 min. N/AN/AWhile the screenplay is mostly fictional, "Gary Busey not only imparts the driven, perfectionist side of Holly's character, but his vocal work is excellent, as is his instrumentation" - Variety. It won the Academy Award for Best Music, Original Song Score.
Chariots of Fire ***½March, 1981118 min. $5 million$55 million USIt tells the fact-based story of two athletes in the 1924 Olympics: Eric Liddell, a devout Scottish Christian who runs for the glory of God, and Harold Abrahams, an English Jew who runs to overcome prejudice. The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards and won four, including Best Picture. The film's title was inspired by the line, "Bring me my chariot of fire" from the William Blake poem adapted into the popular British hymn Jerusalem — the hymn is heard at the end of the film. The original phrase "chariot of fire" is from 2 Kings 2:11 and 6:17 in the Bible.
City of Angels **½April 10, 1998114 min.$55 million$200 millionWhen there's a trend toward humility and selflessness, then we'll know we're getting somewhere on the spiritual front. That time is not yet. Still, as angel movies go, this is one of the better ones, not least because Meg Ryan is so sunny and persuasive as a heart surgeon who falls in love with an angel - Roger Ebert. The soundtrack album click here reached number one on the Billboard charts, with previously unreleased songs "Uninvited" by Alanis Morissette and "Iris" (when everything's made to be broken) by the Goo Goo Dolls.
Con Air **June 6, 1997115 min.$75 million$224 millionThe movie is a solo production by Jerry Bruckheimer, who with his late partner Don Simpson masterminded a series of high-tech special-effects extravaganzas (``Beverly Hills Cop,'' ``Top Gun,'' ``The Rock''). ``Con Air'' is in the same vein, but with less of the dogged seriousness of many action pictures and more of the self-kidding humor of ``The Rock.'' This is a movie that knows it is absurd, and does little to deny it. - Roger Ebert
The Court Jester ****January 27, 1956101 min.$4million$2 millionBasil Rathbone, a world-class fencer called "the best in Hollywood", said that Danny Kaye, who had never fenced before, was as good as he was with only three weeks of practice; Kaye was a natural. "With his quick reflexes and his extraordinary sense of mime, which enabled him to imitate easily anything seen once, Kaye could outfence Rathbone after a few weeks of instruction". In fact, in one scene, Kaye (42 at the time of filming) was so skilled, Rathbone (then 63) could not keep up, and was instead doubled by sword choreographer Ralph Faulkner (which is why the viewers don't see Rathbone's face in that scene).
Crocodile Dundee ***September 26, 198694 min.$8 million$328 millionOften derided for its movie industry, it took the unlikely figure of the laid back Paul Hogan to put Australia on the world box office map in spectacular style. All these years later, and despite the changes in technology and fashions, Paul Hogan's affable charm contrasted with the modern city lifestyle is still of comedic relevance - BBC Home
Crocodile Dundee II **½May 19, 1988110 min.$16 million$240 millionA laid-back sequel which reverses the original's storyline, 'Crocodile' Dundee II proves reasonably amusing if remarkably unchallenging. Fortunately, Hogan has a super-abundance of charisma and a natural manner which neatly combines action and humour - Damian Cannon
Dave ***May 7, 1993110 min.N/A$63 million USIvan Reitman's direction and Gary Ross' screenplay use intelligence and warmhearted sentiment to make "Dave" into wonderful lighthearted entertainment. - Roger Ebert
Death at a FuneralAugust 17, 200790 min.$9 million$47 millionThese days a lot of funerals have become vaudevillian, with readings, fond stories, laughter, favorite golden oldies and everybody smiling about dear old dad, or whoever. If they don't send us off gently into that good night, neither do they rage, rage against the dying of the light (copyright Dylan Thomas, who raged plenty). Frank Oz's "Death at a Funeral" finds its comedy in the peculiar human trait of being most tempted to laugh when we're absolutely not supposed to - Roger Ebert
Déjà VuNovember 22, 2006126 min.$75 million$180 millionTime travel movie with Denzel Washington. Jim Caviezel's terrorist character, Carroll Oerstadt, mirrors in several ways Timothy McVeigh who destroyed the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City with a bomb in 1995, a point acknowledged by Caviezel and director Tony Scott. Filming took place throughout post-Katrina New Orleans.
The Devil Wears PradaJune 30, 2006109 min.$35 million$326 millionCritics gave a fairly positive reaction to the film as a whole. Streep's performance drew universal acclaim, with some going as far as saying it was the only reason to see the film.
Die Hard ***July 15, 1988131 min.$28 million$139 millionHighly acclaimed by critics. Entertainment Weekly named it "best action film ever", though in Roger Ebert's review "as nearly as I can tell, the deputy chief is in the movie for only one purpose: to be consistently wrong at every step of the way and to provide a phony counterpoint to Willis' progress. The character is so wilfully useless, so dumb, so much a product of the Idiot Plot Syndrome, that all by himself he successfully undermines the last half of the movie."
Emma ***August 2, 1996121 min.$6 million$38 millionGwyneth Paltrow sparkles in the title role, as young Miss Woodhouse, who wants to play God in her own little patch of England. In its high spirits and wicked good humor, "Emma" is a delightful film - Roger Ebert
Erin Brockovich ***March 17, 2000130 min.$51 million$256 millionBased on a true story involving the contamination of a town's drinking water. Between 1952 and 1966, PG&E used hexavalent chromium a carcinogenic substance to fight corrosion in their cooling towers then discharged that wastewater into unlined ponds. It percolated into the groundwater and affected an area near the plant approximately two miles long and nearly a mile wide. The case was settled in 1996 for US$333 million, the largest settlement ever paid in a direct action lawsuit in US history. Julia Roberts won an Academy Award as Best Actress.
Exodus ***December 15, 1960208 min.$4million$22 millionThe gingerly awaited film version of Leon Uris' novel, "Exodus", by producer-director Otto Preminger, turns out to be a massive, overlong, episodic, involved and generally inconclusive "cinemarama" of historical and fictional events connected with the liberation of the State of Israel in 1947-1948. It also turns out to be a dazzling, eye-filling, nerve-tingling display of a wide variety of individual and mass reactions to awesome challenges and, in some of its sharpest personal details, a fine reflection of experience that rips the heart - Bosley Crowther, NY Times. Click here for a historic account of the ship "Exodus 1947" on which the first half of the movie is (very loosely) based.
The Family Man ***½December 22, 2000125 min.$60 million$125 millionSmart and sentimental: a rare contemporary holiday-themed comedy-fantasy that has the courage of it's own convictions; this one scores a bull's eye - Leonard Maltin
A Few Good Men ***December 11, 1992138 min.$33 million$237 millionThe story is based on fact, as transmuted into a Broadway play by Aaron Sorkin. Sorkin got the inspiration for the play from a phone conversation with his sister Deborah, who had graduated from Boston University Law School and signed up for a three-year stint with the Navy Judge Advocate General's Corps. She was going to Guantanamo Bay Naval Base to defend a group of Marines who came close to killing a fellow Marine in a harrassment ordered by a superior officer.
Field of Dreams ***½April 21, 1989107 min.N/A$84 millionIt is a delicate movie, a fragile construction of one goofy fantasy after another. But it has the courage to be about exactly what it promises. "If you build it, he will come." - Roger Ebert
The Firm ***June 30, 1993154 min.$42 million$270 millionJohn Grisham who wrote the 1991 novel, enjoyed the film, remarking: I thought Tom Cruise did a good job. He played the innocent young associate very well.
Roger Ebert gave the film three stars out of four, remarking: The movie is virtually an anthology of good small character performances. ... The large gallery of characters makes The Firm into a convincing canvas ... but with a screenplay that developed the story more clearly, this might have been a superior movie, instead of just a good one with some fine performances.
Forget Paris ***May 19, 1995101min.N/A$33 million USBilly Crystal's "Forget Paris" is a more or less deliberate attempt to repeat the success of "When Harry Met Sally...," his 1989 romantic comedy. Its ingredients look as if they were devised to appeal to all audiences: This is the first film to find a way to combine professional basketball with April in Paris. By all rights, the movie should be a pale imitation of its betters, but sometimes lightning does strike twice, and this is a wonderful film, filled with romantic moments that ring true, and with great big laughs. Crystal has made a career out of being smart, quick and glib. It takes a smart actress, like Winger, to match with him, and here, as in the otherwise completely different "Shadowlands," she is the right woman for a man so wrapped up in his work that he has no life. Of course, their relationship isn't simple; as Mickey observes, "Marriages don't work when one partner is happy and the other is miserable. They only work when both are miserable." - Roger Ebert
Four Weddings and a Funeral ***March 9, 1994117 min.$6 million$244 millionThe film was an unexpected success, becoming the highest-grossing British film in cinema history at the time. Follows the adventures of a group of friends through the eyes of Charles, a debonair but faux pas-prone Englishman, played by Hugh Grant.
Ghost ***July 13, 1990128 min.$21 million$505 millionGhost contains some nice ideas, and occasionally, for whole moments at a time, succeeds in evoking the mysteries that it toys with - Roger Ebert. Won Academy Awards for Best Original Screenplay and for Best Supporting Actress for Whoopi Goldberg.
Grease ***June 16, 1978110 min.$6 million$395 millionThe film re-creates a 1950s that exists mostly in idyllic memory - Roger Ebert
The Great Race **½July 1, 1965160 min.$12 million$11 millionThe film was a box office smash and was one of the top 10 grossing films of 1965.
Groundhog Day ***February 12, 1993101 min.$14 million$70 million USA film that finds its note and purpose so precisely that its genius may not be immediately noticeable. It unfolds so inevitably, is so entertaining, so apparently effortless, that you have to stand back and slap yourself before you see how good it really is - Roger Ebert
Guys and Dolls ***November 3, 1955150 min.$5 million$20 millionA filmusical in the top drawer Goldwyn manner. The casting is good all the way. Marlon Brando as Sky Masterson and Jean Simmons as the Salvation Army sergeant deport themselves in inspired manner. They make believable the offbeat romance between the gambler and the spirited servant of the gospel. Vivian Blaine is capital in her original stage role. Frank Sinatra is an effective Nathan Detroit and among the four they handle the burden of the score - Variety. In 2004, the AFI ranked the song Luck Be a Lady at #42 on their list of the 100 greatest film songs, AFI's 100 Years... 100 Songs. In 2006 Guys and Dolls ranked #23 on the American Film Institute's list of best musicals.
The HolidayDecember 8, 2006138 min.$85 million$205 millionWhat have we here? A holiday movie that doesn't make everyone grumpy? A romantic comedy with real sense of how romance feels, both good and bad, when caught in its throes? Pass the eggnog. "The Holiday" goes down so smoothly that chef Nancy Meyers, the film's writer, director and co-producer, spent eons in the kitchen making everything look easy - Hollywood Reporter
How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days **February 7, 2003116 min.$50 million$177 millionA frothy, sometimes stupid, sometimes sweet romantic comedy, "How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days" coasts on the unlikely charm of its star leads — Matthew McConaughey and Kate Hudson - BBC Home
The Hunt for Red October ***½March 2, 1990134 min.$30 million$200 millionBased on Tom Clancy's first Jack Ryan novel, written in 1984, about a Marko Ramius Sean Connery, a Lithuanian who has risen to high levels of trust in the Soviet Navy who intends to defect to the United States with his officers and the experimental nuclear submarine Red October, a Typhoon-class submarine equipped with a revolutionary stealth propulsion system. He meets up with CIA analyst Jack Ryan Alec Baldwin in the process. In February 1990, just before the film's theatrical release, the Soviet government announced that the Communist Party was no longer completely in charge, effectively ending the Cold War. While the film received mixed critical reviews, it became one of the top grossing films of the year. Roger Ebert called it "a skilful, efficient film that involves us in the clever and deceptive game being played".
The Insider ***½November 5, 1999157 min.$68 million$60 millionThe controversial true story of a 60 Minutes television series segment, as seen through the eyes of a real tobacco executive, Jeffrey Wigand. The 60 Minutes story originally aired in November 1995 in an altered form because CBS then-owner, Laurence Tisch, objected. The story was later aired on February 4, 1996. In one wonderful scene (Don) Hewitt — 60 Minutes boss says the whole matter will blow over in 15 minutes, and (Mike) Wallace — 60 Minutes reporter says, "No, that's fame. You get 15 minutes of fame. Infamy lasts a little longer." ☺
The Invention of LyingOctober 2, 2009100 min.$18 million$32 millionIn its amiable, quiet, PG-13 way, it is a remarkably radical comedy. In a world where everyone always tells the truth, it slips in the implication that religion is possible only in a world that has the ability to lie. It isn't strident, ideological or argumentative, it's simply the story of a guy trying to comfort his mother and perhaps win the woman he loves. Ricky Gervais, who co-wrote and co-directed with Matthew Robinson, also plays this pudgy everyman named Mark and walks a delicate tightrope above hazardous chasms, helped greatly in his balancing act by Jennifer Garner's inspired seemingly effortless performance as a great beauty who isn't conceited or cruel but simply thinks Mark with his pug nose is the wrong genetic match for her children - Roger Ebert
It's a Wonderful Life ****December 20, 1946130 min.$3 millionN/AA sentimental Christmas movie starring James Stewart and Donna Reed which in 2006 placed number one on the American Film Institute's list of the most inspirational American films of all time AFI's 100 Years... 100 Cheers. At the time of its release Time magazine said "It's a Wonderful Life is a pretty wonderful movie. Director Frank Capra's inventiveness, humor and affection for human beings keep it glowing with life and excitement."
Jerry Maguire ***½December 13, 1996139 min.$50 million$274 millionThe film is often a delight, especially when Cruise and Zellweger are together on the screen. He plays Maguire with the earnestness of a man who wants to find greatness and happiness in an occupation where only success really counts. She plays a woman who believes in this guy she loves, and reminds us that true love is about idealism. - Roger Ebert
Junior **½November 23, 1994109 min.$60 million$108 millionIt's one of those films you sit through with an almost continual smile. It's goofy and ridiculous and preposterous, and yet it makes you feel good, and there is something oddly heartwarming about the sight of this macho guy melting with feelings of protectiveness and maternal concern. - Roger Ebert
JunoSeptember 1, 200796 min.$7 million$231 millionJust about the best movie of the year. Has there been a better performance this year than Ellen Page's creation of Juno? I don't think so - Roger Ebert. Won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.
Just Like HeavenSeptember 16, 200595 min.$58 million$99 millionThe woman is Elizabeth, played by Reese Witherspoon. The man is David, played by Mark Ruffalo. These are two of the sweetest actors in the movies, and sweetness is what they give their characters in "Just Like Heaven." - Roger Ebert
Kate & Leopold **½December 25, 2001119 min.$48 million$47 million US"Kate & Leopold" is a preposterous time-travel romance in which the third Duke of Albany leaves the New York of 1876 and arrives in the New York of Meg Ryan. Well, of course it's preposterous: Time travel involves so many paradoxes that it is wise, in a romantic comedy like this, to simply ignore them. The movie is not really about time travel anyway, but about elegant British manners vs. American slobbiness. Like the heroine of one of those romance novels her best friend reads, our gal Meg is swept off her feet by a wealthy and titled English lord. - Roger Ebert
A Knight's Tale **May 11, 2001144 min.$41 million$117 millionThe movie has an innocence and charm that grow on you. It's a reminder of the days before films got so cynical and unrelentingly violent. "A Knight's Tale" is whimsical, silly and romantic - Roger Ebert
The Lake HouseJune 16, 2006105 min.$40 million$115 millionTheme song: "This Never Happened Before" by Paul McCartney. "Despite some time paradox elements, never mind, I tell you, never mind! What I respond to in the movie is its fundamental romantic impulse" - Roger Ebert
Liar Liar **½March 21, 199786 min.$45 million$303 millionI am gradually developing a suspicion, or perhaps it is a fear, that Jim Carrey is growing on me. Am I becoming a fan? In ``Liar Liar'' he works tirelessly, inundating us with manic comic energy - Roger Ebert
Life or Something Like It **April 26, 2002103 min.$40 million$17 millionA screenplay that's actually about something. "Life or Something Like It" has a quiet confidence. It makes its points with economy and understatement, and that goes for the performances, too. - Mick LaSalle
Little Miss SunshineJanuary 20, 2006103 min.$8 million$100 millionIn the Academy Awards for 2006, Michael Arndt received "Best Original Screenplay" and Alan Arkin received "Best Supporting Actor". A gentle family satire and a classic American road movie, "Little Miss Sunshine" harks back to the anti-establishment, countercultural comedies of the 1970s. You just won't see a better acted, and better cast, movie. These actors (and their directors) grasp how unspoken reactions can be funnier than dialogue or punchlines, and how pain can be the source of the most satisfying comedy - Roger Ebert
The Longest Day ****September 25, 1962 (France)
October 4 (US)
October 23 (UK)
178 min.$10 million$50 millionBrilliant retelling of the Allied invasion of Normandy, complete with all-star international cast, re-creation of historical events on a grand scale, Oscar-winner special effects, and cinematography - Leonard Maltin. Many of the military consultants and advisors who helped with the film's production were actual participants in the action on D-Day, and are portrayed in the film.
Love Actually **½November 6, 2003135 min.30 million GBP$247 millionThe movie's only flaw is also a virtue: It's jammed with characters, stories, warmth and laughs, until at times Curtis seems to be working from a checklist of obligatory movie love situations and doesn't want to leave anything out.
Maid in Manhattan ***December 13, 2002105 min.$55 million$94 millionA skillful, glossy, formula picture, given life by the appeal of its stars - Roger Ebert
Music and LyricsFebruary 9, 2007104 min.$40 million$146 millionWriter-director Marc Lawrence's take on pop music success is exactly right, satiric without being absurdist, and therefore a prize worth the effort - Mick LaSalle
My Big Fat Greek Wedding **½April 19, 200295 min.$5 million$369 millionThe movie is warm-hearted in the way a movie can be when it knows its people inside out. Vardalos was an actress at Chicago's Second City when she wrote the play. The way the story goes, it was seen by Rita Wilson, a Greek-American herself, and she convinced her husband, Tom Hanks, that they had to produce it. So they did, making a small treasure of human comedy - Roger Ebert. My Big Fat Greek Wedding became a sleeper hit and grew steadily from its limited release. Despite never hitting the #1 spot and being an independent film with a $5 million budget, it ultimately grossed over $368 million worldwide, becoming the "highest-grossing romantic comedy in history" - Entertainment Weekly
My Best Friend's Wedding ***June 20, 1997105 min.$46 million$300 millionStories like this are tricky for the actors. They have to be light enough for the comedy, and then subtle in revealing the deeper tones. Roberts, Diaz and Mulroney are in good synch, and Roberts does a skillful job of negotiating the plot's twists: We have to care for her even after we stop sharing her goals - Roger Ebert
NextApril 27, 200796 min.$70 million$74 millionDiana Saenger of ReviewExpress gave the movie 3 stars and said "Next boasts a fresh plot with a tricky twist ending that can be misconstrued if you don't pay close attention and then pause to think about it."
Notting Hill ***May 21, 1999124 min.$42 million$364 millionThe movie is bright, the dialogue has wit and intelligence, and Julia Roberts and Hugh Grant are very easy to like - Roger Ebert
An Officer and a Gentleman **½July 28, 1982122 min.N/A$130 million USEbert described An Officer and a Gentleman as "a wonderful movie precisely because it's so willing to deal with matters of the heart". Richard Gere balked at shooting the ending of the film, in which Zack (Richard Gere) arrives at Paula (Debra Winger)'s factory wearing his naval dress whites and carries her off the factory floor. Gere thought the ending wouldn't work because it was too sentimental. Director Taylor Hackford agreed with Gere until, during a rehearsal, the extras playing the workers began to cheer and cry. When Gere saw the scene later, with the music underneath it ("Up Where We Belong") at the right tempo, he said it gave him chills. Gere is now convinced Hackford made the right decision. Screenwriter Michael Hauge, in his book Writing Screenplays That Sell, echoed this opinion: "I don't believe that those who criticized this Cinderella-style ending were paying very close attention to who exactly is rescuing whom" - see also Julia Roberts "Pretty Woman"
One Fine Day ***December 20, 1996108 min.N/A$46 million USThe script is fast and witty, the soundtrack is appealing and the leads give solid performances - Louise Keller
Paint Your Wagon ***October 15, 1969164 min.$20 million$32 million USSplashy, witty musical, with Lee Marvin, Clint Eastwood and Jean Seberg, adapted from the 1951 stage musical by Lerner and Loewe, set in a mining camp in Gold Rush-era California.
Peggy Sue Got Married **½October 10, 1986104 min.$18 million$41 million US Frank Capra made comedies like this, in which the humor welled up out of a deep, even sentimental, drama of human emotions. This is one of the best movies of the year. - Roger Ebert
The Pink Panther ***½Dec 1963 Germany
Mar 1964 US
113 min.N/A$10 million USThis is film making as a branch of the candy trade, and the pack is so enticing that few will worry about the jerky machinations of the plot. Quite apart from the general air of bubbling elegance, the pic is intensely funny. The yocks are almost entirely the responsibility of Peter Sellers, who is perfectly suited as a clumsy cop who can hardly move a foot without smashing a vase or open a door without hitting himself on the head. - Variety
Pretty Woman ***March 23, 1990119 min.$14 million$463 millionBecause "Pretty Woman" stars Richard Gere, and his character falling in love with a prostitute, it is astonishing that "Pretty Woman" is such an innocent movie - that it's the sweetest and most openhearted love fable since "The Princess Bride." Here is a movie that could have marched us down mean streets into the sinks of iniquity, and it glows with romance - Roger Ebert
The Princess DiariesAugust 3, 2001115 min.$26 million$165 millionThe Princess Diaries produced ticket sales well over its production budget. Reviews were mostly mixed with 52 out of 106 critics recommending the movie.
Proof of Life **½December 4, 2000135 min.$65 million$63 millionInspired by a Vanity Fair magazine article, and the real-life kidnapping of Thomas Hargrove. Russell Crowe, Meg Ryan and David Morse are everything the story asks for; her character is doubly interesting because the movie avoids the cliche of the grieving wife and shows a conflicted, sometimes angry woman who had a big fight with the husband just before he was snatched - Roger Ebert
Raiders of the Lost Ark ****June 12, 1981115 min.$18 million$384 millionHighest-grossing film of 1981, winning Academy Awards for Art Direction, Film Editing, Sound and Visual Effects. "Two things, however, make Raiders of the Lost Ark more than just a technological triumph: its sense of humor and the droll style of its characters ... We find ourselves laughing in surprise, in relief, in incredulity at the movie's ability to pile one incident upon another in an inexhaustible series of inventions" - Roger Ebert
Rain Man ***December 16, 1988133 min.$25 million$172 millionHighest-grossing film of 1988, mostly in 1989, winning Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Actor in a Leading Role (Dustin Hoffman), Best Director, and Best Writing, Original Screenplay. "At the end of Rain Man, I felt a certain love for Raymond, the Hoffman character. I don't know quite how Hoffman got me to do it." - Roger Ebert
Runaway Bride ***July 30, 1999116 min.$70 million$152 million USA romantic comedy film starring Richard Gere and Julia Roberts and directed by Garry Marshall. While not as successful at the box office as the previous movie the three made together (also guest starring Hector Elizondo), Pretty Woman, the movie was, nevertheless, a hit among moviegoers.
Runaway Jury ***October 17, 2003127 min.$60 million$80 millionAdaptation of John Grisham's novel starring John Cusack, Gene Hackman, Dustin Hoffman, and Rachel Weisz. Roger Ebert's critique of this film stated that the plot to sell the jury to the highest-bidding party was the most ingenious device in the story because it avoided pitting the "evil" and the "good" protagonists directly against each other in a stereotypical manner, but it plunged both of them into a moral abyss. Grisham himself said it was a "smart, suspenseful" movie and was disappointed it made so little money.
The SentinelApril 21, 2006108 min.$60 million$78 millionHave I seen movies like "The Sentinel" before? Yes, and I hope to see them again. At a time when American audiences seem grateful for the opportunity to drool at mindless horror trash, it is encouraging that well-crafted thrillers are still being made about characters who have dialogue, identities, motives and clean shirts - Roger Ebert
Serendipity ***October 5, 200190 min.$28 million$77 millionSerendipity is as fun to watch as the word is to say - Suite101
Shadowlands ***½December 25, 1993131 min.N/A$25 million USTrue story about CS Lewis and Joy Gresham. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times called the film "intelligent, moving and beautifully acted." Rita Kempley of the Washington Post said "brims with substance and wit, though it's essentially a soap opera with a Rhodes scholarship".
Shall We Dance?October 15, 2004106 min.$50 million$170 million"Shall We Dance?" is a reasonably close remake of "Dansu Wo Shimasho Ka" (aka "Shall We Dance?"), a 1996 Japanese film that set box-office records at home and won audiences around the world. If you've seen it, you know precisely what happens in the Hollywood version, but the movie is a star vehicle; the plot isn't the point, Gere and Lopez are - Roger Ebert. Click here for those tricky tango lyrics.
Six Days Seven Nights ***June 12, 199898 min.$70 million$165 millionHarrison Ford has an easy appeal in movies like this and never pushes too hard. Anne Heche plays a nice duet with him - Roger Ebert
Sleepless in Seattle ***June 25, 1993105 min.$21 million$228 millionThe soundtrack was a Number One hit on the Billboard charts. "Sleepless in Seattle" is as ephemeral as a talk show, as contrived as the late show, and yet so warm and gentle I smiled the whole way through. - Roger Ebert
Soapdish **May 31, 199193 min.$7 million$86 millionSince all of the characters in "Soapdish" are shamelessly venal and banal (the big motivations are lust, greed, jealousy and vanity), the movie has the purity of a Marx Brothers comedy. Also some of the anarchy - Roger Ebert
Something's Gotta Give ***December 12, 2003128 min.$60 million$266 millionA cheerful romantic comedy about the rejuvenating power of love and how old dogs can indeed learn new tricks - Hollywood Reporter
Speed ***½June 10, 1994116 min.$28 million$350 millionKeanu Reeves had dealt with the LAPD before on "Point Break", and learned about their concern for human life, which he incorporated into Jack Traven. Film critic Roger Ebert gave the film four out of four stars and wrote, "Films like Speed belong to the genre I call Bruised Forearm Movies, because you're always grabbing the arm of the person sitting next to you. Done wrong, they seem like tired replays of old chase cliches. Done well, they're fun. Done as well as Speed, they generate a kind of manic exhilaration".
Stepmom **December 25, 1998124 min.$50 million$160 millionDirector Chris Columbus, who is adept at showing familial chaos, actually manages to dig a trifle deeper than usual in exploring the jealousy and hurt that occur when the baton is passed between a birth mom (Susan Sarandon) and the younger wife (Julia Roberts) who steps into her shoes - Paula Nechak
Sweet Home Alabama **September 27, 2002109 min.$38 million$180 millionIt is a fantasy, a sweet, light-hearted fairy tale with Reese Witherspoon at its center. She is as lovable as Doris Day would have been in this role (in fact, Doris Day was in this role, in "Please Don't Eat the Daisies") - Roger Ebert.
That Thing You Do! ***October 4, 1996108 min.$2 million$26 million USThe first film written and directed by Tom Hanks, and not surprisingly it is as sunny and guileless as many of the characters he's played: Without hauling in a lot of deep meanings, it remembers with great warmth a time and a place. The time: the summer of 1964. The place: Erie, PA, where life for young people centers on music, on records, on the radio, and especially on the incredible phenomenon of the Beatles. - Roger Ebert
Thirteen Days ***December 25, 2000145 min.$80 million$33 million USFor years now, movies have either trivialized the US President's office (The American President, Dick, and Wag the Dog) or represented it as a weak institution surrounded by sinister centers of secret power (JFK). Bruce Greenwood's wholly believable performance as John F. Kennedy in Thirteen Days shows a real president — not a Camelot knight - Ernest R. May, Professor of American History at Harvard University, who transcribed "The Kennedy Tapes: Inside the White House During the Cuban Missile Crisis". Click here for the full review.
The Towering Inferno **½December 14, 1974165 min.$14 million$499 millionThe film was released the year after the two World Trade Center skyscrapers opened in New York City, inspired by their construction and of what would happen if fire broke out. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times praised the film as "the best of the mid-1970s wave of disaster films." Paul Newman and Steve McQueen had both wanted top billing, so the credits were arranged diagonally with McQueen lower left and Newman upper right. Also starred Fred Astaire, and O.J. Simpson as the building's security chief.
A Walk in the Clouds ***May 27, 1995102 min.$20 million$50 million USIt is a glorious romantic fantasy, aflame with passion and bittersweet longing. One needs perhaps to have a little of these qualities in one's soul to respond fully to the film, which to a jaundiced eye might look like overworked melodrama, but that to me sang with innocence and trust ... At a time when movies seem obligated to be cynical, when it is easier to snicker than to sigh, what a relief this film is - Roger Ebert
Wall Street ***December 11, 1987126 min.$15 million$41 million USStone's most impressive achievement in this film is to allow all the financial wheeling and dealing to seem complicated and convincing, and yet always have it make sense. The movie can be followed by anybody, because the details of stock manipulation are all filtered through transparent layers of greed. Most of the time we know what's going on. All of the time, we know why - Roger Ebert
The Wedding DateFebruary 4, 200590 min.$15 million$47 million"The Wedding Date" presents the curious case of two appealing performances surviving a bombardment of schlock. The character played by Dermot Mulroney is a romance novel fantasy, and yet that doesn't prevent him from also being subtle and intriguing. The character played by Debra Messing not only finds Mulroney through an article in the Sunday New York Times magazine, but seems to have found herself there, too, in the spring fashion issue. But she is nevertheless lovable and touching - Roger Ebert
The Wedding Planner **January 26, 2001103 min.$35 million$95 millionA plot so hopeless that only acting can redeem it. Lopez pulls her share of the load, looking genuinely smitten by this guy and convincingly crushed when his secret is revealed. McConaughey is not the right actor for this material. Bridgette Wilson-Sampras is, however, correctly cast as Fran, the rich bride-to-be. - Roger Ebert.
What Women Want ***December 15, 2000127 min.$40 million$374 millionWhat women want is very simple: A man willing to listen when they're speaking to him. The movie, written and directed by Nancy Meyers, doesn't flow so much as leap from one good scene to another over the crevices of flat scenes in between. If the movie is imperfect, it's not boring and is often very funny - Roger Ebert
When Harry Met Sally... ***½July 21, 198996 min.$16 million$93 million USthe quintessential contemporary feel-good relationship movie that somehow still rings true - Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan, Baltimore Sun
Working Girl ***December 21, 1988115 min.$28 million$103 million Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert gave the film four out of four stars and wrote, "The plot of "Working Girl" is put together like clockwork. It carries you along while you're watching it, but reconstruct it later and you'll see the craftsmanship".
You've Got Mail ***December 18, 1998119 min.$65 million$116 million USThe movie was directed by Nora Ephron, who also paired Hanks and Ryan in "Sleepless in Seattle" (1993), and has made an emotional, if not a literal, sequel. That earlier film was partly inspired by "An Affair to Remember," and this one is inspired by "The Shop Around the Corner," but both are really inspired by the appeal of Ryan and Hanks, who have more winning smiles than most people have expressions. - Roger Ebert

Review asterisks by Leonard Maltin (2005 Movie Guide)

** End of Catalogue List