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10 Iconic Movies That Are So Unashamedly “American”

Ferris Bueller
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

Movies bring people together; there is no doubt about that. Not only do they transport viewers to another world, but they often depict real life and allow the opening of minds as you learn to see things in a different light. According to a popular internet forum, these are ten iconic American movies they would show friends from other countries.

1. Back to the Future (1985)

Michael J. Fox, Back to the Future
Image Credit: Universal Studios.

In this 1980s sci-fi classic, small-town California teen Marty McFly is thrown back into the ’50s when an experiment by his eccentric scientist friend Doc Brown goes awry. Traveling through time in a modified DeLorean car, Marty encounters young versions of his parents and must ensure they fall in love, or he’ll cease to exist.

One movie lover claims Back to the Future “Encompasses everything Americans love about two of their favorite decades and shows a future that’s both dystopian and optimistic at the same time.”

2. Forrest Gump (1994)

Forrest Gump
Image Credit: The Tisch Company.

Slow-witted Forrest Gump has never thought of himself as disadvantaged, and thanks to his supportive mother, he leads anything but a restricted life. Whether dominating on the gridiron as a college football star, fighting in Vietnam, or captaining a shrimp boat, Forrest inspires people with his childlike optimism. What makes this movie such an iconic American film is that it feels like a walk through history.

3. The Sandlot (1993)

The Sandlot (1993)
Image Credit: 20th Century Fox.

The Sandlot follows a young boy who movies to a new neighborhood but manages to make some friends. The boys run into trouble when he borrows a ball from his stepdad that gets hit over a fence into the lawn of one the meanest man in town. One moviegoer explains it best by saying it has everything Americans love, “Baseball, s’mores, and the fourth of July.”

4. The Karate Kid (1984)

The Karate Kid (1984)
Image Credit: Columbia Pictures.

Daniel moves to Southern California with his mother, Lucille, but quickly finds himself the target of a group of bullies who study karate at the Cobra Kai dojo. Fortunately, Daniel befriends Mr. Miyagi, an unassuming repairman who just happens to be a martial arts master himself.

Miyagi takes Daniel under his wing, training him in a more compassionate form of karate and preparing him to compete against the brutal Cobra Kai. Someone details The Karate Kid as “The essential American movie.”

5. Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)

Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

Ferris Bueller has an uncanny skill at cutting classes and getting away with it. Intending to make one last duck-out before graduation, Ferris calls in sick, “borrows” a Ferrari, and embarks on a one-day journey through the streets of Chicago. On Ferris’ trail is high school principal Rooney, determined to catch him in the act.

6. Top Gun (1986)

Top Gun
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

The Top Gun Naval Fighter Weapons School is where the best of the best train to refine their elite flying skills. When hotshot fighter pilot Maverick is sent to the school, his reckless attitude and cocky demeanor put him at odds with the other pilots, especially the cool and collected Iceman. But Maverick isn’t only competing to be the top fighter pilot. He’s also fighting for the attention of his beautiful flight instructor, Charlotte Blackwood.

7. Blazing Saddles (1974)

Blazing Saddles (1974)
Image Credit: Warner Bros.

In this satirical take on Westerns, crafty railroad worker Bart becomes the first black sheriff of Rock Ridge, a frontier town about to be destroyed in order to make way for a new railroad. Initially, the people of Rock Ridge harbor a racial bias toward their new leader. However, they warm to him after realizing that Bart and his perpetually drunk gunfighter friend are the only defense against a wave of thugs sent to rid the town of its population.

8. 12 Angry Men (1957)

12 Angry Men (1957)
Image Credit: United Artists.

In the sweltering jury room of the New York County Courthouse, a jury prepares to deliberate the case of an impoverished teenager accused of stabbing his abusive father to death. One fan suggests this film is iconic because it “Shows our best instincts overcoming our worst.”

9. Field of Dreams (1989)

Field of Dreams
Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

When Iowa farmer Ray hears a mysterious voice one night in his cornfield saying, “If you build it, he will come,” he feels the need to act. Despite taunts of lunacy, Ray builds a baseball diamond on his land, supported by his wife, Annie. Afterward, the ghosts of great players emerge from the crops to play ball, led by “Shoeless” Joe Jackson. But, as Ray learns, this field of dreams is about much more than bringing former baseball greats out to play.

10. American Graffiti (1973)

American Graffiti (1973)
Image Credit: Universal Pictures.

On the last day of summer vacation in 1962, friends Curt, Steve Terry, and John cruise the streets of small-town California while a mysterious disc jockey spins classic rock’n’roll tunes. It’s the last night before their grown-up lives begin. Steve’s high-school sweetheart, a hot-to-trot blonde, a bratty adolescent, and a disappearing angel in a Thunderbird provide all the excitement they can handle.

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The Usual Suspects
Image Credit: Gramercy Pictures.

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Katherine Heigl
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

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21 of the Absolute Best Comedies Ever Made

Best in Show
Photo Credit: Castle Rock Entertainment

There’s nothing like a good comedy to lift your spirits. Whether a movie puts a non-stop smile on your face or you fall off the couch laughing, a good comedy is incredibly appreciated. A recent online thread asks what the best comedy people have ever seen is. Here are the top answers.

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15 Films That Made People Literally Walk Out of the Theater

Image Credit: Columbia Pictures.

You’ve paid a small fortune for tickets, popcorn, and soda. But there are some movies that are worth throwing it all away and getting the heck out of there. Here are 15 of those films.

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8 Controversial Comedies That Could Never Be Made Today

Tropic Thunder Ben Stiller
Image Credit: Dreamworks.

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Source: Reddit.

Author

  • Tessa Smith

    Tessa Smith owns MamasGeeky.com and is a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer-approved Film and TV Critic and a huge geek. Tessa has been in the Entertainment writing business for almost ten years and is a member of several Critics associations including the Critics Choice Association and the Greater Western New York Film Critics Association. She grew up watching movies, playing video games, and reading comic books -- and still loves all of those things. She proudly lets her geek flag fly and spreads the word that there is nothing wrong with being a geek.

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Written by Tessa Smith

Tessa Smith owns MamasGeeky.com and is a Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer-approved Film and TV Critic and a huge geek. Tessa has been in the Entertainment writing business for almost ten years and is a member of several Critics associations including the Critics Choice Association and the Greater Western New York Film Critics Association. She grew up watching movies, playing video games, and reading comic books -- and still loves all of those things. She proudly lets her geek flag fly and spreads the word that there is nothing wrong with being a geek.

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