What would we do without movies? Go outside? Get some fresh air? Nahhhhhh, we’re good thanks. Films make the world go around, and we’re pretty sure that’s a scientific fact. Sure, scientists and astronomers alike might say that gravitational pull and other sciencey things help this ol’ floating planet to go around, but we don’t buy it. We reckon it’s the bright lights of Hollywood that keep us all going, and keep us as happy as Larry. Incidentally, Larry also really loves movies.
Of course, movies have been around for a while now. They’ve come on leaps and bounds since the days of black and white television and stock animation, and we now have the likes of 3D imaging and special effects to take our favorite stories from zero to one hundred reaaaaaal quick. Thanks to these new developments, some pretty awesome actors and actresses, and filmmakers who certainly know their stuff, films have been able to make their way into everyday life and stake their place in society, In fact, we don’t see them going away anytime soon. However, do you ever think about what the movie world was like the year that you were born? Looking back at the release dates of some of our favorite movies can be a little depressing and we’d like time to slow down just a smidge, but it is pretty remarkable. Some of our fave movies were released so much earlier than we thought, and we were in our teens when our least favorite movie came out! But what about the exact year? Well, these are the movies that were popular the year you were born…
1965 – The Sound of Music
So, we have a really important question to ask you; what are the hills alive with? Of course, we all know the answer! The Sound of Music was released in 1965, but we can almost guarantee those who grew up in the ‘70s, ‘80s, ‘90s, and ‘00s also watched the Von Trapp family play goat puppets and yodel just like that Walmart kid. Yep, lay-ee-odl-lay-ee-odl-oo, or something like that. This movie will forever go down in history, mainly for the fact that this film taught us to never make curtains out of floral drapes. That was a look, Maria.
1966 – The Bible: In the Beginning…
Okay, so this one is a little niche, but it’s hard to deny that this movie didn’t make an impression on the cinematic world. John Huston was the main man in this film (excuse the pun) and provided the voice for Noah, the narrator, and God himself. I mean, he was pretty darn talented. As if that wasn’t enough, he also directed the whole thing! Considering this movie was the highest grossing of 1966, you could say he had the whole world in his hands.
1967 – The Graduate
Oh, here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson. If you were a graduate in 1967, you probably hoped your Mrs. Robinson would just knock on your door one day and make all of your dreams come true. Alas, only Dustin Hoffman was that lucky. The Graduate followed the life of Benjamin Braddock, who had just graduated from college with no clue as to what he was going to do next (yup, sounds familiar). This year also provided us with the animated thrills of The Jungle Book. Thank you, 1967, you were da best.
1968 – 2001: A Space Odyssey
We’re not gonna lie, we love anything to do with space, so it’s fair to say that we were a little obsessed with 2001: A Space Odyssey when it was first released. Although we do mean that we were obsessed with the whole movie, we also mean that we were obsessed with Keir Dullea. It’s basically impossible not to be. Of course, we all knew that this movie wasn’t going to be your average sci-fi thriller, especially since Stanley Kubrick was sat in the director’s chair. Nevertheless, this fight between man and machine certainly got us hooked.
1969 – Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
At some point in our lives, we’ve always wanted to be a cowboy or cowgirl. The cool boots, the huge hat and that random piece of straw between your teeth. It was something we all aspired to be, but something we realized we would never be cool enough to do (*sigh*). Thankfully, we were able to live vicariously through Butch Cassidy and Harry Longabaugh (AKA The Sundance Kid) in this movie, and follow their escapades as they live life on the run and travel to Bolivia. As you do. We’re actually doing that next week. I mean… no we’re not.
1970 – Love Story
Ahhhh, a good ol’ romance. We think it’s fair to say that Love Story is one of the best love stories in cinematic history. Yep, ol’ Billy Shakespeare can give us Romeo and Juliet, but we raise that with Oliver Barrett and Jenny Cavalleri. This romantic love story provided us with some of the most intense emotions, and we weren’t quite sure what to do with them. There was happiness, sadness, anger, and rage, and a whole load of tears. We still don’t know to feel, but we have learned that love means never having to say you’re sorry…
1971 – Fiddler on the Roof
Finish the lyrics: ‘If I were a rich man…’ Yep, it’s just a load of du-du-du’s. You can’t give them a lot for creative flair, but you can’t deny that this song will be stuck in your head for the rest of the day. The 1971 Fiddler on the Roof movie served as an adaptation of the famous musical, and soon rose to fame for being entertaining, catchy, and pretty darn emotional. We all hoped to have a father just like Tevye after watching this film, and we’re still holding out hope that he will just magically appear on our roof like Father Christmas.
1972 – The Godfather
You know what they say; ‘revenge is a dish best served cold,’ and The Godfather served so much revenge they could start their own ice cold buffet. This iconic movie brought us some of the most quotable references in cinematic history, alongside some enviable clothing choices. Couple that with the fact that there was so much drama we went through 10 buckets of popcorn, and you have a pretty iconic movie. Starring Marlon Brando and Al Pacino, The Godfather is arguably the best movie to come out of 1972. We dare you to change our minds.
1973 – The Sting
Paul Newman was back with a sting in 1973, as he starred in this movie set in the Great Depression-era. There are members of a dastardly mob gang, there’s oodles of crime, there’s more gambling than you could bet on, and there are even men in cool suits that we’d definitely like to borrow one day. What more could you want? We certainly don’t want anything else. We’re set. 1973 also brought us The Exorcist, but we don’t know whether we want to thank William Friedkin for that one. *Shivers*
1974 – Blazing Saddles
Aw, even as an rough ol’ cowboy, Gene Wilder was still super cute. Blazing Saddles was the movie of the moment in 1974 and earned a whopping three Oscar nominations! It was a huge hit with fans across the world, and everyone had a copy of this movie in their VHS players. It was basically a crime if you didn’t. Following not far behind, though, was The Towering Inferno. You could say was a blazing suspense (and scared the bejeezus out of us), but we won’t do because that pun is just too punny.
1975 – Jaws
Dun, dun, dun, dun. Yep, just four beats are you’re already hiding behind your pillow and having nightmares about giant teeth. Looking back now, Jaws is pretty bad in terms of graphics and mechanics (because CGI was a mere thought-speck back then), but back in 1975, it was the ultimate horror. And yes, we did avoid going into the sea for a few months after watching this film. So what? Sure, this movie franchise basically ruined our chances of every befriending sharks, but its legendary status will always have a place in our hearts.
1976 – Rocky
When you think of Sylvester Stallone, you can’t help but picture him without his top on (oo-er), wearing his silky shorts (even more oo-er), and donning his boxing gloves (not so oo-er). Stallone has been the major face of Rocky since 1976 and joined the likes of The Omen, Carrie, King Kong, and The Marathon Man that year. You could say he’s a big deal. We’re going to say he’s the biggest deal in the world and that he basically won 1976. We went there, because it’s totes true.
1977 – Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope
1977 was where it all started. Yep, this was the year that Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford took themselves off to a galaxy far, far away to star as Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia and Han Solo in the first episode of the franchise. Since then, it’s become one of the biggest franchises in the history of cinema and is still going today. While this does make us feel super old, we will happily make ourselves feel old for the sake of this franchise. We have a new hope that time will start to slow down now. Please and thank you.
1978 – Grease
Go, Greased Lightning! We watched this film on many a summer night, while being hopelessly devoted to its main characters, and doing the hand jive, baby. It’s fair to say that Grease is one of the catchiest musical movies of all time, and at one point or another, we all wanted to be Sandy. Or Rizzo. Or Frenchie. Or basically anyone who was able to appear in this awesome movie. Alongside Danny Zuko and his leather jacket, 1978 also brought us the likes of Jaws 2, Superman, Heaven Can Wait and Midnight Express. Yikes, 1978 was guuurd.
1979 – Kramer vs. Kramer
Kramer vs. Kramer was one of the most successful movies of 1979 and earned itself a whopping five Oscar Awards. Of course, these awards were largely thanks to Meryl Streep and Dustin Hoffman, who absolutely slayed this movie and their characters. In a good way, of course. Yet, that wasn’t all 1979 had to offer. That year also blessed us with Alien (and THAT hospital scene), The Muppet Movie (amazing) and Rocky II (doubly amazing). Do you agree that Kramer vs. Kramer took the top spot this year?
1980 – Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Do you remember when you first heard the biggest plot-twist in all of the cinematic history? If it’s hard to pinpoint, it’s probably because we’ve heard it SO MUCH since the movies first reveal in 1980. But when this movie first came out, it caused a huge uproar, and people couldn’t believe they’d have to wait three years to see how the story panned out. Alas, it’s Star Wars. This franchise is always going to come out on top. It’s like the cherry on a rather delicious sundae.
Harrison Ford is quite literally the kinda man who can do both. Not only is he one of the most intelligent men on the earth and one of the best archaeologists that we know (granted, he is the ONLY archaeologist we know, but that’s not the point), but he is also one sassy son-of-a-gun. He handles his whip extremely well and just generally saves the world. He’s the kinda old fashioned superhero we all need in the world, and we’re kinda sad he hasn’t played Indiana in a while. We miss him.
1982 – E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial
1982 saw the release of E.T: The Extra-Terrestrial, and we’ve never ridden our bikes the same since. Yep, we pretend to have him in our bicycle basket as we ride (blanket-cape over our shoulders) just in front of a really huge moon. I mean, who doesn’t? This movie also featured a really young Drew Barrymore, which makes us feel really old, but also extremely happy. Drew and the rest of the cast have come such a long way, and we’re so proud of them. E.T even made his way home in the end. What a trooper.
1983 – Return of the Jedi
Okay, so Star Wars movies are going to appear quite a few times in this article because….well, there’s loads of them. And they’re great. Return of the Jedi was released in 1983, and we thought it would be the last in the franchise, but George Lucas just likes to tease us. The tease. Once again, this movie caused a huge stir among Star Wars fans across the globe, and they just loved to see the franchise progress. With each new movie came better special effects and even more intense storylines.
1984 – Beverly Hills Cop
Any movie with Eddie Murphy in is going to be a good’un. That’s just a fact that everyone needs to know. Beverly Hills Cop was one of the best original comedies of the ‘80s, and we’ve watched it about 548,959 times since. BVC was the highest grossing movie of 1984, followed closely by the original Ghostbusters movie, and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Those are some awesome movies, so we can understand why it was a tough call. Ultimately, though, Beverly Hills Cop came out on top.
1985 – Back to the Future
Everything about Back to the Future weirds us out a little bit. A guy who goes back in time to hang out with his parents, all the while trusting a crazy-haired scientist with his life and feeling pretty happy about getting into his time machine? I mean, alright then. Anyone else think that was a bit odd? Just us? Okay, cool. Nevertheless, we’ve watched it countless times, and it’s fair to say that it’s one of the greatest movies of all time, not just one single year.
1986 – Top Gun
The ‘80s was a great time for movies – and a great time for every girl who had a crush on Tom Cruise. That’s because they got to watch him on the big screen as a hunky fighter pilot who wore a uniform and aviator sunglasses. Could there be anything better? We think not. But 1986 wasn’t all about Top Gun. This year also played host to the release of Stand By Me, Alien and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, and gave us oodles of excuses to not do our homework.
1987 – The Princess Bride
How amazing was this movie? The Princess Bride made us feel pretty darn warm inside, but also gave us unrealistic expectations of love and life. Why couldn’t we be a Princess Bride? Why couldn’t we find a handsome Prince? It seems as though Meghan Markle has now taken that story away from us. 1987 also gave us movies like 3 Men and a Baby, and Dirty Dancing. After all, nobody puts the Princess Bride, 3 Men and a Baby in the corner…
1988 – Who Framed Roger Rabbit?
Everything about this movie was a whole load of yes, and we’re so jealous of anyone born in 1988. Not only was Who Framed Roger Rabbit? the best live-action/cartoon hybrid released, but the same year also brought us the likes of Beetlejuice, Rain Man, and Big. Some of the best movies EVER. If you weren’t born in this year we feel bad for you son, because we got 1988 problems and all of them can be sorted by watching these incredible movies. Would we lie to you?
1989 – Batman
Okay, so everyone has their opinion on Batman. There have been some rather interesting adaptations over the years, and this was just one of them. Whether you like this version or you don’t, you still can’t deny it was pretty amazing for the ‘80s. Although the Joker’s purple jacket didn’t look out of place at all. This year also saw another Indiana Jones movie, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, The Little Mermaid (one of our fave Disney movies) and Field of Dreams. The bat signal was strong this year.
1990 – Home Alone
Home Alone is one of those movies that you love to hate. You love it because it’s just so darn entertaining and Macauley Culkin was actually pretty cute (before it all went downhill), but we hate it because it infuriates us so much! We’re not sure who decided to leave a little kid on their own, and we don’t know how the heck Culkin’s parents managed to afford their ridiculous mansion, but it just doesn’t make sense. Literally everything that could go wrong with him being Home Alone..goes wrong. Nevertheless, it’s a classic and kicked off the ‘90s with a bang (or two).
1991 – The Addams Family
Yassssss, Addams Family. If we were to be adopted into any dark and brooding family, we’d totally request to become Wednesday Addams sister. We have the wardrobe for it, after al. All black, errything. Yep, Christina Ricci was so cool. While this movie made us feel emotions (which we were convinced we didn’t have), it also took the top spot as one of the greatest movies of this year. 1991 also played host to movies like Robin Hood Prince of Thieves, Beauty and the Beast, and The Silence of the Lambs. There was a lot of darkness that year…
1992 – Aladdin
Aladdin was shining, shimmering and splendid. This Disney adaptation had everything we could possibly want from a movie, and then some. There was singing, dancing, a magical carpet ride, a hilarious genie and some beautiful humans. Jasmine even had a pet tiger, for goodness sake! While we’re not sure that would pass health and safety laws today, it was still pretty awesome. And yes, we can’t watch it without crying. We miss you, Robin Williams. We wonder what the new movie will be like? Do you reckon Will Smith has what it takes to become the new genie? We’ll find out soon enough.
1993 – Jurassic Park
In 1993, Steven Spielberg thought, ‘You know what this year needs? Some dinosaurs!’ We can’t thank him enough for this stroke of genius, because now dinosaurs are a huge part of our lives. Fossils and all. We were completely enamored, yet completely scared of this movie when it was released, even though the dinosaurs were super unrealistic back in the day. It was amazing to think what life would be like with dinos still roaming around, although this movie didn’t exactly promote dino-human relations. This year was also the year of Mrs. Doubtfire, Sleepless in Seattle, and Groundhog Day.
1994 – Forrest Gump
Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re going to get! 1994 gave us one of the most quotable movies of all time and was Tom Hanks’ finest hour – until 1995, that is (read on to find out more, wink wink, nudge nudge). This movie made us laugh, it made us cry, and it made us feel everything in between. We didn’t really know how to feel after watching this movie, but we did know one thing. Forrest loves you, Jenny. Forrest Gump wasn’t the only movie to make us cry this year, as The Lion King was also released in 1994. R.I.P Mufasa, we will never forget you.
1995 – Toy Story
The ‘90s was definitely dominated by Tom Hanks, and we were so okay with it. Buzz and Woody first came onto our screens in 1995, and we’ve never looked at toys the same way since. Whether you loved the cowboy or the spaceman more, you couldn’t help but love this piece of Pixar magic. It started off something magical, and it truly made us feel as though we were floating to infinity and beyond. We also watched The Usual Suspects, Braveheart and Clueless this year. It was awesome.
1996 – Independence Day
Sure, Independence Day was remade in 2016, but really, there’s only one Independence Day. The OG movie stars Will Smith, and beats any other remake out of the water. This movie truly got our blood pumping, and we couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if the world really was ravaged by monsters who wanted to dominate the globe? Actually, we reckon we might be closer to that moment than ever. Yikes. This movie dominated the box office charts in 1996, alongside the likes of Trainspotting, Fargo and Jerry McGuire.
1997 – Titanic
We won’t ever let go, Rose, don’t worry. We could never forget Titanic, how could we? It’s a tragedy, it’s a romance, and it’s the best movie ever all rolled up into one big bundle of emotions. Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet’s romance kinda overshadowed Good Will Hunting, The Fifth Element and Men in Black when they were released the same year, because you just can’t match these two. It was like Romeo + Juliet all over again, except Claire Danes was replaced by Kate Winslet, and they didn’t both pass away, and there weren’t a whole load of unnecessary fatalities. Okay, maybe it wasn’t really like R+J.
1998 – Saving Private Ryan
Yep, another Tom Hanks movie. In our defence, we did tell you he dominated the ‘90s, so you really can’t be surprised. The opening scene of this movie was so successful it won five Oscars, which is kind of a big deal in Hollywood. Of course, it wasn’t hard to see why. This war drama was incredibly poignant and heartbreaking, and was a worthy winner in every way. But it wasn’t the only hit to come out of the penultimate year of the ‘90s. 1998 also saw the release of There’s Something About Mary, You’ve Got Mail, and The Truman Show.
1999 – American Beauty
American Beauty was first released in 1999 and grossed over $365 million across the world. Wowza. While the content of this movie may have been deemed a little risque at the time, the true beauty of the film (if you’ll excuse the pun) could also be found in the midst of the cringe. This year also brought us the likes of American Pie, The Sixth Sense, and The Matrix, which are arguably some of the most iconic movies of all time. Especially American Pie, because this one time at band camp, we actually watched it.
2000 – How the Grinch Stole Christmas
The start of the 21st-Century brought us one of the best (and worst) Christmas movies of all time, and if you don’t watch How the Grinch Stole Christmas each year…well, shame on you! While we didn’t quite understand why this green monster hated people so much at the time, we now completely get it. We wonder if he has space up in his cave for a little one? Jim Carey may have stolen the 2000 award, but Russell Crowe came a close second with his role in Gladiator. Mostly because he was only partially clothed and sweaty most of the time.
2001 – Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
2001 was when the magic really happened. This was the year that our lives changed forever, because this was the year that we received our acceptance letter from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The first Harry Potter movie was a huge hit, and waiting for the next installment had us begging for more. We missed the Great Hall. We missed Harry. We missed Ron and Hermione’s whirlwind romance. We missed Hagrid. We missed Hogwarts. We missed Dumbledore. We even missed Snape. WE MISSED IT ALL.