Best Movies of 1982

10. DIVA

49 LISTS | 1 TOP SPOT
Jean-Jacques Beineix | 117 mins | Thriller
Wilhelmenia Fernandez | Frédéric Andréi | Richard Bohringer

“The most exciting filmmaking debut in years is a new wave thriller about a young opera buff in possession of two audio tapes that have him being chased through Paris by mobsters and record pirates.” – Gene Siskel, Chicago Tribune

9. SOPHIE’S CHOICE

55 LISTS | 3 TOP SPOTS
Alan J. Pakula | 150 mins | Drama/Romance
Meryl Streep | Kevin Kline | Peter MacNicol

“”Sophie’s Choice” was the best film of 1982, a film by Alan Pakula that took a difficult and challenging book and rose to the occasion with a moving, tough, honest movie. William Styron’s best-selling novel told the story of a Polish Catholic woman who was thrown into a Nazi concentration camp, separated from her children, subjected to humiliation and degradation – and then somehow found her way to a boarding house in Brooklyn, and into the lives of two men who lived there. One was her lover – scornful, proud and mad. The other was the kid downstairs, who wanted to be a great novelist, and ended up writing her story. The novel itself told two stories: Sophie’s own history, and the record of how it got written.
The crucial element in the film is Meryl Streep’s performance as Sophie, the plump, blond Polish woman who combines carnality and cheerful playfulness in a way they’ve never quite been put together before. But this is an ensemble movie; Kevin Kline, as the lover, and Peter MacNicol, as the Southern kid who wants to be a great novelist, join in a sometimes graceful, sometimes painful interplay of emptions. This is one of the great film adaptations from literature, and with it, Meryl Streep earns a place in the pantheon of great film actresses.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

8. AN OFFICER AND A GENTLEMAN

55 LISTS | 1 TOP SPOT
Taylor Hackford | 124 mins | Drama/Romance
Richard Gere | Debra Winger | David Keith

“This aspired to be nothing more than an old-fashioned ’50s gung-ho recruitment film with a soap opera subplot, but in the hands of director Taylor Hackford it transcended its meager premise and became spectacular melodrama. Its characters are vigorous and alive and three dimensional and we are caught up in their dilemmas. There is nothing pretty about this film, but its basis in real life makes it very appealing. The cast is good, led by Richard Gere and Debra Winger as a latter-day Cinderella, but the biggest applause went to Louis Gosset Jr. as the tough drill instructor who pulled all the pieces of the film together.” – Michael Janusonis, Providence Journal

7. DAS BOOT

58 LISTS | 5 TOP SPOTS
Wolfgang Petersen | 149 mins | Adventure/Drama/Thriller
Jürgen Prochnow | Herbert Grönemeyer | Klaus Wennemann

“Life aboard a German submarine on patrol in the North Atlantic during World War II. No politics to speak of, but plenty of horrors-of-war in a relentlessly unglamorous story. An assault on the eyes and ears, by which it was seen that this piece of war, at least, was a living hell– a lesson that seems still worth telling. With all that, the film was beautifully photographed as well.” – Bill Cosford, Miami Herald

6. GANDHI

70 LISTS | 15 TOP SPOTS
Richard Attenborough | 191 mins | Biography/Drama/History
Ben Kingsley | John Gielgud | Rohini Hattangadi

“Richard Attenborough spent 20 years of his life and a reputed $26 million bringing the story of India’s peace-loving guru to the screen, and the times and expense were obviously worth it. The result is a magnificent achievement that examines the hopes, ideals, dreams and disappointments of the legendary leader while providing a rich and colorful tapestry of the chaotic country he lived and died for. The centerpiece is a performance by Ben Kingsley in the title role that seems illuminated from within. A lesson in history – and in historic filmmaking – no person who sees it will easily forget.” – Rex Reed, New York Post

5. DINER

73 LISTS | 1 TOP SPOT
Barry Levinson | 110 mins | Comedy/Drama
Steve Guttenberg | Mickey Rourke | Kevin Bacon

“This small, “personal” film written and directed by Barry Levinson, is funny, serious, literate, honest, warm-hearted and unpredictable. It’s about five college-age pals who hang out together in a roadside diner, a kind of men’s club that’s off-limits to their girlfriends. “Diner” avoids being broad, like “American Graffiti,” or sophomoric, like “Animal House.” It’s hard to believe that someone could make a film about horny young men that doesn’t contain one titillating sexual innuendo.
The film is about the inability of males to communicate with females, set in an era when both sexes had roles to fit into and play out. Nothing is forced. Everything is presented with a light, non-judgmental touch. The cast is wonderful: I adored Steve Guttenberg as Eddie, the slob. Just before he gets married, he subjects his fiancée to a football test to be sure they will have something to talk about. The setting, an old roadside diner, is deliciously photographed, with closeups of ketchup bottles and French fries. It’s a gem.” – John Stark, San Francisco Examiner & Chronicle

4. MISSING

73 LISTS | 2 TOP SPOTS
Costa-Gavras | 122 mins | Biography/Drama/History
Jack Lemmon | Sissy Spacek | Melanie Mayron

“A thoughtful, forceful political melodrama by Costa-Garvas starring Jack Lemmon as the father of a young idealist who disappears in the wake of the coup that unseated the Allende government in Child. He’s joined by Sissy Spacek as the boy’s wife in a search – both exciting and heartbreaking – through the thick underbrush of Latin American politics and covert U.S. involvement in them.” – Richard Freeman, Newhouse News Service

3. THE VERDICT

75 LISTS | 2 TOP SPOTS
Sidney Lumet | 129 mins | Drama
Paul Newman | Charlotte Rampling | Jack Warden

“Paul Newman gives the strongest performance of his career as a down-and-out alcoholic attorney who gets one last chance to redeem himself. He goes to bat for the comatose victim of bungling doctors. Newman gets good support from fellow cast members James Mason, Jack Warden, Charlotte Rampling and Lindsay Crouse.” – Diane Hust, The Oklahoman

2. TOOTSIE

117 LISTS | 2 TOP SPOTS
Sydney Pollack | 116 mins | Comedy/Drama/Romance
Dustin Hoffman | Jessica Lange | Teri Garr

“Sydney Pollack’s “Tootsie” is the funniest, most revealing comedy since “Annie Hall.” Dustin Hoffman as Michael Dorsey/Dorothy Michaels gives the best performance of his career in this dual role. Although the idea of Dustin Hoffman dressing as a woman smacks of Hollywood gimmickry, the conceit is cleverly integrated into the tale of a desperate man who takes desperate measures in order to succeed. Teri Garr and Bill Murray head one of the best supporting casts of the year.” – Michael Blowen, Boston Globe

1. E.T. THE EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL

134 LISTS | 43 TOP SPOTS
Steven Spielberg | 115 mins | Family/Sci-Fi
Henry Thomas | Drew Barrymore | Peter Coyote

“Spielberg, whose verve and style were apparent in his earliest work, had become a master entertainer, but even his best films (The Sugarland Express, Close Encounters of the Third Kind) were rarely allowed into the canon of High Art by the keepers of those pristine portals. With his childishness, his blatant appeals to the lowest common denominator (the crude slapstick of 1941) and his mega-buck budgets, he seemed a true Hollywood wunderkind: rash, trash and flash. But Spielberg had been concerned with art all along (every film paid homage, in one way or another, to directorial antecedents) and in E. T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, the finest American film of the year, that concern paid off. Only a man who did not have to worry about money would have had the temerity to create, in the dismal economy of the eighties, a sumptuous escapist fantasy that was also an idealized autobiography – Spielberg has frankly admitted that the boy in E. T. is the boy little Stevie Spielberg wanted to be – and a piece of awesomely powerful mythmaking. It took 10 years for the film of The Wizard of Oz to be acclaimed a classic; it took E. T. 10 seconds.” – Jay Scott, Toronto Globe and Mail

Full List:

RFilmL#1ARL%#1%TCLTCL1TCL%TCL1%
1E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial134432.3185%44%501682%43%
2Tootsie11724.7974%2%50082%0%
3The Verdict7525.7348%2%28046%0%
4Missing7324.9546%2%27044%0%
5Diner7315.4146%1%27044%0%
6Gandhi70153.3643%14%27844%22%
7Das Boot5854.6937%5%16126%3%
8An Officer and a Gentleman5515.6435%1%19131%3%
9Sophie's Choice5534.0334%3%17128%3%
10Diva4915.8831%1%18030%0%
11The World According to Garp4726.7230%2%14023%0%
12My Favorite Year4407.4628%0%13021%0%
13Victor/Victoria4307.0527%0%16026%0%
14Shoot the Moon3915.4325%1%13021%0%
15Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior3315.1121%1%11118%3%
16Poltergeist3216.2620%1%12020%0%
17Mephisto3135.0620%3%15025%0%
18Personal Best2917.3518%1%11018%0%
19Moonlighting2725.5017%2%12120%3%
20Tex2507.3516%0%7011%0%
21Gregory's Girl2007.5613%0%7011%0%
22Three Brothers1825.4411%2%6010%0%
23Blade Runner1807.0011%0%8013%0%
24Fitzcarraldo1804.6711%0%9015%0%
24The Long Good Friday1806.1311%0%10016%0%
26Quest for Fire1707.7511%0%305%0%
27Yol1715.7811%1%305%0%
28Lola1635.5510%3%8113%3%
2948 HRS.1607.0010%0%6010%0%
30Smash Palace1607.2210%0%10016%0%
31The Chosen1507.3310%0%305%0%
32Coup de torchon1315.138%1%10116%3%
33Rocky III1207.258%0%203%0%
33Richard Pryor Live on the Sunset Strip1208.808%0%407%0%
35Time Stands Still1105.757%0%305%0%
36Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan1007.676%0%102%0%
37Come Back to the 5 & Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean1007.436%0%508%0%

Lists Included 157 | Top Critics’ Lists Included 61

R Rank
L Total number of lists where the film was selected as one of the top 10 films of the year
AR Average position on ranked top 10 lists
#1 Total number of lists where the film was selected as the best film of the year
L% Percentage of total lists where the film was selected as one of the top 10 films of the year
#1% Percentage of mentions where the film was selected as the best film of the year
TCL Number of times that the film was selected as one of the top 10 films of the year on top critics’ lists
TCL1 Number of times that the film was selected as the best film of the year on top critics’ lists
TCL% Percentage of times that the film was selected as one of the top 10 films of the year on top critics’ lists
TCL1% Percentage of lists where the film was selected as the best film of the year on top critics’ lists

Advertisements