Sadly, if you were not born in 1989, this year marks the end of the 1980s decade. For those too young to remember, the year 1989 was a great time for films, and thus it makes it difficult to narrow things down.
Whether or not you were born in 1989, these films are important for their place in history. They have been chosen on how much of an impact they made on the world of cinema.
Glory concerns the racism black soldiers had to face in the Civil War, which makes their fight for freedom even more meaningful. The film boasts performances by Morgan Freeman, Matthew Broderick, and Denzel Washington. It also marks Washington’s first Oscar win.
Field Of Dreams
“If you build it, they will come.” With those words, Kevin Costner creates a baseball diamond in his corn fields. As a result, the ghosts of former ball players from the 1910s show up to start playing. This is one of Costner’s finest film roles, and Ray Liotta makes an impression as Shoeless Joe Jackson.
Tim Burton succeeds in adapting the Dark Knight to the big screen. Michael Keaton’s take on Batman is a dark, brooding tour de force. Yet it is Jack Nicholson who steals the show as the Joker. Burton’s gothic atmosphere harkens to the original comics, and it feels like a world where a man would dress as a bat. The movie would pave the way for more comic book films.
Do The Right Thing
In Do The Right Thing, Spike Lee depicts rising racial tensions on a hot day in Brooklyn. The ensemble includes Danny Aiello, Samuel L. Jackson and John Turturro. Lee gives a good performance as Mookie, who’s trying to find direction in life. Danny Aiello’s turn as Sal is both complex and sympathetic. The story stays with you long after the film is over. It also begs the question of whether or not Mookie did the right thing.
Born On The Fourth Of July
This film depicts Tom Cruise at the height of his fame, and he proves his skill as a dramatic actor. Based on Ron Kovic’s life, the movie shows a man’s growth from a patriotic teen to an antiwar activist. Cruise gives a moving performance as Kovic, and it ranks among his best roles. It is Oliver Stone’s finest work as a director, and one of the best war films of all time.
Choosing these flicks was hard, so I came up with a runners-up list. It consists of Lethal Weapon 2, My Left Foot, Driving Miss Daisy, When Harry Met Sally, and Dead Poets Society. 1989 was a good year for cinema, and it is a nice way to close the decade.
Did your top films make the cut?
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