See ya later, 20s. It's been real. And by "real", I mean holy crap I don't know how anyone survives their 20s. That was a rollercoaster of 10 years. From falling in love, to getting my heart broken (several times). From losing myself in the confusion of wanting to fit in, to finally finding myself apart from the crowd. In the past year, I've learned the type of people I want in my life and I am slowly learning how to say goodbye to the stagnant people who exude negativity. Simply, I'm too old for that shit.
I don't want to get deep this year. You can have that later. Or you can look at 28 and 29. But for 30, let me just entertain you.
This list represents all the movies I believe you should watch before you turn 30. If you want a list of classics, this isn't it. No one cares that you watched Shawshank Redemption or Breakfast at Tiffanys (only one of those movies is genuinely good). These are some of my favorites and these are my stories about them. I'll fight you on the quality of each and every one of these.
(Side note: Blogger keeps deleting random trailers I've posted. If it's not here, I'm sorry. I tried. A new one disappears every time I save this thing.)
30. The Count of Monte Cristo (2002)
Fun fact: Henry Cavill was Stephanie Meyer's top choice to play Edward Cullen but he was too old by the time the movie was being made. That's the only reason I rented this movie so there's that embarrassing fact. This movie was so good, they even named a sandwich after it (send help I'm turning into my father).
Napoleon: In life, we are kings or pawns.
29. Romeo + Juliet (1996)
Shakespeare. They took the words of Shakespeare and put it into 1990s SoCal and it's the coolest most perfect thing ever. I was obsessed with Leonardo DiCaprio during this time too. Leo and I share a birthday, which was a very important thing to me at the age of about 10.
Mercutio: If love be rough with you, be rough with love. Prick love for pricking and you beat love down.
28. The Hangover (2009)
I feel like you were not expecting this movie to be on any of my top lists but I like to surprise people. I can quote this movie easier than most other movies and that's probably because when I went to Europe in 2010 with Nami and Thea, Nami and I annoyed Thea by constantly quoting The Hangover. We even managed to quote it AT Caesars Palace which confused our tour guide and probably reiterated the whole "Americans are dumb" thing but that's okay because we didn't need anymore wolves in our wolf pack.
Stu: She's got my grandmother's Holocaust ring!
Alan: I didn't know they gave out rings at the Holocaust.
27. Desperately Seeking Susan (1985)
I can't tell you why I love this movie so much or how I even found this movie but I found it this year and I freaking love it. It's ridiculous in only the way that 80s movies can be ridiculous. Patricia Arquette is a boring house wife with a cheating husband and she gets amnesia and thinks she's Madonna's character. Hijinks ensue. Trust me on this one.
Gary: What are you wearing?
Roberta: A jacket. It used to belong to Jimi Hendrix.
Gary: You bought a used jacket? What are we, poor?
26. The Addams Family (1991)
Do I actually have to justify this one?
Wednesday: I'm a homicidal maniac, they look just like everyone else.
25. Remember the Titans (2000)
This is the best sports movie and I will gladly fight you on this (I'm looking at you, Jacob). I wore out my VHS of this movie. CCR is in the soundtrack of this movie! My volleyball team recreated the dance/cheer from this movie during Nationals one year (where we took 2nd place). This was before I realized I was far too short to play volleyball.
Coach Boone: I don't scratch my head unless it itches and I don't dance unless I hear some music. I will not be intimidated. That's just the way it is.
24. Heathers (1988)
Heathers is Mean Girls before Mean Girls was even a thought inside Tina Fey's head. Which just goes to show that high school girls are the literal worst creatures on planet earth. You should really just watch it for the fashion alone. Oh and Christian Slater. What. A. Babe.
Heather Chandler: Well, fuck me gently with a chainsaw. Do I look like Mother Teresa?
23. My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002)
I'm hoping this isn't a surprise to you, but I'm Greek. And when you're a little Greek, you're a lot Greek. I love being Greek. It's a fantastic group of people who like to eat really good food, party, and be incredibly welcoming. Also, family is above all. Honestly, I feel like so many different cultures have been able to watch this movie and relate. It's funny, honest, and heartwarming. Watch it with your mom.
Toula: [narrating] My dad believed in two things: That Greeks should educate non Greeks about being Greek and every ailment from psoriasis to poison ivy can be cured with Windex.
22. Hocus Pocus (1993)
Come on guys.
Dani: It doesn't matter how young or old you are, you sold your soul! You're the ugliest thing that ever lived, and you know it!
21. Willow (1988)
I was shocked to find out that everyone in the United States hadn't watched this movie growing up. Seriously, who raised you people? First and foremost, Val Kilmer is in it and he has glorious hair and you see his chest most of the time due to a v. low cut shirt. This is a classic fairy tale type of story. Evil Queen, baby who can take over the world, unlikely hero, hot dude, hot chick, magic, more hijinks (so many hijinks during the 80s). Did I mention that Val Kilmer is in this? If you don't like him, too bad cause he's further down on this list and I don't like you.
High Aldwin: Magic is the bloodstream of the universe. Forget all you know, or think you know. All that you require is your intuition.
20. Practical Magic (1998)
Sandra Bullock is pure hair goals in this movie. I feel like far too many people call this a chick flick, which is very sad for those of you who have avoided this movie simply because ew gross there's romance bleh barf. Grow up. This movie isn't about a stupid boy. It's about family. It's about trusting yourself. It's about growing the strength inside of you. And it's about how I really wish I was a witch. Also, holy crap that house.
Aunt Frances: My darling girl, when are you going to realize that being normal is not necessarily a virtue? It rather denotes a lack of courage!
19. Dogma (1999)
Kevin Smith was a movie genius in the 90s and early 2000s. Jay and Silent Bob were the best duo since Batman and Robin. This cast is just bananas. I love the tongue in cheek jokes about the Catholic Church and how religion is viewed at this time. Can Buddy Christ actually become a thing? If so, I'll gladly go back to church.
Ariana Grande was right. God is a woman.
Serendipity: Leave it to the Catholics to destroy existence.
28. Clueless (1995)
Clueless is the movie that your boyfriend claims he doesn't like cause it's a chick flick but secretly loves. Paul Rudd is like, 12 in this movie. Alicia Silverstone's hair is just perfectly perfect and all I wanted in the 90s. I still dream about her closet software. Granted, the whole Step-Brother romance thing is kinda gross but you should blame Jane Austen for that (Yes, it's based on a book). It's so 90s.
Tai: Why should I listen to you, anyway? You're a virgin who can't drive.
17. Girl, Interrupted (1999)
My mom wouldn't let me watch this movie in theaters. I remember my sister going. This was one of two movies (both on this list) that she wouldn't let me go see. And I was furious. Therefore, as soon as this bad boy hit Blockbuster, I waited for a week when mom was on a business trip and dad rented this for me. This movie is one of those that changed my life. I related to a lot of the moments in this movie during my late teens/early 20s. It takes the story of a very lost girl and shows how she was able to find her own way.
Angelia Jolie too, guys. Babe.
Susanna: I didn't try to kill myself.
Dr. Potts: What were you trying to do?
Susanna: I was trying to make the shit stop.
16. Mallrats (1995)
There was this older boy I had a crush on in 8th grade who said this was his favorite movie. So I watched it. Did I really understand all the Volkswagon jokes? Nope. Did I become obsessed with autostereograms after that? You betcha (and I always saw the sail boats, bitches). I'm a sucker for movies that take place in one day. I will never eat chocolate covered pretzels due to this movie. Also, Ben Afflecks suit. Lol.
Brodie: You're going to listen to me? To something that I said? Hell, most of the time I'm just talking out of my ass... or sticking my hand in it.
15. Cruel Intentions (1999)
I watched this movie cause Buffy is in it and she plays this character so freaking well. Why are so many books obsessed with Step-Brother and Step-Sister romances? SMG and Selma Blair won the MTV Movie Award for best kiss cause it was the 90s and "OMG TWO GIRLS KISSING" was still a ~thing~ that people freaked out over. Sebastian also launched my obsession with journaling. I had tried to start a few years earlier but didn't really get solidly into it until about 7th grade. Also, this soundtrack is phenomenal.
Kathryn (Buffy) is problematic af, don't get me wrong. She sucks. But I really feel for her, which is why I chose the quote I chose to go below this. She had "masculine" traits that women just aren't allowed to have. They are things I've been accused of most of my adult life. A man does it and it's fine and dandy. A woman does it, and she's an aggressive bitch. Blow me.
Kathryn: Eat me, Sebastian. It's okay for guys like you and Court to fuck everyone. But when I do it, I get dumped for innocent little twits like Cecile. God forbid I exude confidence and enjoy sex. Do you think I relish the fact that I have to act like Mary Sunshine 24/7 so I can be considered a lady? I'm the Marcia fucking Brady of the Upper East Side, and sometimes I want to kill myself. So there's your psychoanalysis, Dr. Freud. Now tell me, are you in... or are you out?
14. Fight Club (1999)
This was the other movie my mom refused to let me go see in theaters. To be honest, I wish I was older when I first watched it so that I could fully grasp the twist and everything that went on. I probably had to watch this movie at least 5 times before I completely understood it and loved it. I dreamt of owning that house that Edward Norton and Brad Pitt lived in and renovating it into something epic simply because I loved the kitchen. Meatloaf is in this movie.
Tyler Durden: Listen up, maggots. You are not special. You are not a beautiful or unique snowflake. You're the same decaying organic matter as everyone else.
13. The Lost Boys (1987)
14 Year Old Lauren in Blockbuster: The Lost Boys? This looks cool. Dad, have you seen this one? Will I like it?
Dad: You haven't seen this yet? Who the hell raised you?
See where I get it? If you knew 14 year old Lauren, you'd know I was obsessed with vampire movies. Anything dark and goth and edgy, that was my jam (tbh, it's still my jam, I just have lots of jams). This movie had everything I loved. Vampires. Cute boys. Motorcycles. Glitter. A hot chick with the coolest skirts in the entire world. All the glamor of 80s outfits. 80s music. Plus, the Coreys!
Grandpa: Well, now, let me put it this way. If all the corpses buried around here were to stand up all at once, we'd have one hell of a population problem.
12. The Craft (1996)
I cannot, for the life of me, remember when I first watched this movie. It's like this movie was birthed out with me or something. I do remember having already watched it by the time I hit high school and when my classmates finally caught up, I do remember having multiple people ask me if I think I'm one of the girls in the cast (making fun of me). If they had watched the movie, they probably wouldn't have asked me this cause I would have put a hex on them, obviously. Listen. Teenaged Lauren was very emo and anything to do with "dark stuff" was so cool. Whatever made people think that I could put a spell on them made me happy.
Tbh. It still does. Be nice to me.
Nancy: You know, in the old days, if a witch betrayed her coven, they would kill her.
11. Empire Records (1995)
Quick fun fact: Robin Tunney wrapped filming for this movie directly before shooting for The Craft, which is why she wears a wig in The Craft.
I didn't watch this movie until college. I remember my best friend, Jessica, had watched it and said to me, "I'm sure you've already seen Empire Records" and I was like "nope, what's that?" We immediately went to a computer to watch this movie. It was love at first site. Kick ass soundtrack. 90s movie. Takes place in one day. Is set in a record store. Everything about this movie is perfect.
Lucas: Damn the man, save the empire!
10. 10 Things I Hate About You (1999)
Lol. See what I did there? This is number 10 on the list. And it has 10 in the title. It's funny. (Sorry, apparently my dad learned how to blog)
We had a small video store by my house that my parents finally let me walk to (by myself!) in 6th grade. My first non-parent related rental was this movie. It was because Andrew Keegan was in it. When I picked up the case though, Heath Ledger caught my eye, so I had to rent it. This is another Shakespeare movie on the list (it's based on The Taming of the Shrew). Kat was my idol. Badass, no nonsense, punk girl who was intelligent af and she was a feminist before it was cool.
Kat Stratford: I guess in this society, being male and an asshole makes you worthy of our time.
9. Lady Bird (2017)
This movie was very lightly on my radar. It was a, "Eh, someday I'll watch it" movie. Shout out to Gabby for making me watch cause this movie is so freaking good holy crap. If you want to know what it was like going to a Catholic High School in California in the early 2000s as a chick, this movie is it. It felt like I was watching my life on screen. The mother/daughter relationship is the most accurate one I've ever seen on film.
Lady Bird: The only thing exciting about 2002 is that it's a palindrome.
8. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Add this to a list of movies that my dad thought an 8 year old could watch.
I love horror movies. I always have. It's something my dad and I bonded over when I was a kid. He was able to show me all these super cool horror movies (and Tales from the Crypt). Silence of the Lambs is the creme de la creme of horror movies. It is refined, sophisticated, and intelligent. This movie is what got me "into" serial killers.
Hannibal Lecter: Well, Clarice - have the lambs stopped screaming?
7. Se7en (1995)
When I was 18, I had Jessica over at my house and we were just hanging out. I don't remember what happened, but the movie Se7en came up. We immediately turned to my wise, movie watching dad for a review of this movie. My dad stares at the two of us as if we'd each grown an extra head and hands me a twenty. He tells me that I need to go to Rasputins and buy it right now. Here's something you need to know about my dad. He is not a fan of re-watching movies. In fact, the only ones he willingly watches multiple times are: Tombstone, A River Runs Through It, and Oh Brother Where Art Thou. If you haven't seen those movies, do it now. But start with Se7en cause it's on Netflix.
Never ask what's in the box.
Somerset: Ernest Hemingway once wrote, "The world is a fine place and worth fighting for." I agree with the second part.
6. Labyrinth (1986)
If you know me, you know my love for Labyrinth. It's the first movie I remember watching. I didn't know English but I could recite all the dialogue. David Bowie was my first crush and I am still not over his death. This movie is ridiculous and if you're an adult and watch it for the first time, you probably will not like it cause it's puppets and overly 80s and the visuals are cringy. But it's fantastic. I even have a Labyrinth tattoo. In 6th grade, I had a sleepover for my birthday and I tried to get everyone to watch this movie. About 10 minutes in every deemed this movie "weird" and made me stop it so we could watch Mr Deeds (since one girl literally carried that movie around with her??... But I was the weird one).
Sarah: I can bear it no longer! Goblin King! Goblin King! Wherever you may be, take this child of mine far away from me!
5. The Saint (1997)
Back when Neftlix was a wee baby, I saw this movie and thought "This looks cool." Approximately 30 minutes into this movie, I realized I'd seen it. Like, 10 million times. So I called my dad and asked him. He informed me that when it first came out on VHS, I insisted on renting it all the time from Blockbuster. I was 9. Going through this list has really shown me that 9 year old Lauren had bomb movie taste. Val Kilmer gets to have like, 10 accents. He is also this really cool spy type person but also helps people. And he's cute. So. There's that.
Emma: Who are you?
Simon: Nobody has a clue. Least of all me.
4. The Crow (1994)
I discovered The Crow by watching that MTV show, Raid My Room. One of the contestants on the show had this poster in his room. It was dark and emo and edgy so I immediately wanted to watch it. We watched it as a family. My mom and sister immediately said, "That was a weird movie" while I said, "I LOVE THIS MOVIE SO MUCH". I bought it on VHS and watched it literally everyday for 2 months. I was even able to convince my drama teacher, a few years later, to have us watch it during drama class. Only one other person actually enjoyed it and 2 people made fun of me, to my face, for liking this movie. Man, I hated high school.
Sarah: People once believed that when someone dies, a crow carries their soul to the land of the dead. But sometimes, something so bad happens that a terrible sadness is carried with it and the soul can't rest. Then sometimes, just sometimes, the crow can bring that soul back to put the wrong things right.
3. SLC Punk (1998)
This is another movie I'm shocked to find out people haven't seen. I regard SLC Punk as being one of the most important movies of our times! It's another movie I can't recall seeing "for the first time" which makes me assume that it was birthed out with me. Heroin Bob's girlfriend was my faaaavorite. She was this edgy, beautiful, human being who was so punk rock it hurt. It also set a very real tone that showed how many people tried too hard to fit into a subculture they didn't really want to be in. A subculture that was created for the misfits but also had the gate keepers of the misfits denying entry to misfits. It was a topsy turvy world.
Stevo: Posers were people who looked like punks but they did it for fashion. And they were fools, they'd say "anarchy in the UK". What the fuck's that? Anarchy in the UK. What good is that to those of us in Utah, America? It was a Sex Pistols thing. They were British, they were allowed to go on about Anarchy in the UK. You don't live your life by lyrics.
2. Blindspotting (2018)
If you have seen me this year, I have talked to you about this movie. I have nothing to say other than this is the best movie I have seen this year. Easily. Hands down. No contest. The ONLY reason it's not number 1 on this list is because the number 1 on this list is my baby. It's like my first born. I'm sorry. But Blindspotting is phenomenal and there is nothing that I dislike about this movie. It is beyond relevant. It hits so close to home. It will open your eyes. Go watch this movie right now.
Also, shout out to my girl Corryn for doing the boom operating for this magical movie.
Collin: You monsters got me feeling like a monster in my own town!
1. Scream (1996)
This is another movie that dad thought an 8 year old could watch. I love my dad.
I spent a LONG TIME not including Scream on my top lists because I cared too much about what people think of me. Most people probably watched Scream once and disregarded it as a B Horror Movie (I'm looking at you, Reece Witherspoon). It is so much more than that. Seriously, give this movie another go. Scream changed the horror movie genre and flipped it on its head. It took all the "rules" of the horror movies and challenged them. Drew Barrymore was supposed to be Sidney but talked Wes Craven into letting her be Casey because no one would believe that they killed a Hollywood star in the first 5 minutes. There are no rules. (Also... Spoiler Alert? Sorrynotsorry)
I don't care anymore. Scream is my all-time absolute favorite movie and if you think that's stupid, you can bite me.
Randy: There's always some stupid bullshit reason to kill your girlfriend. That's the beauty of it all! Simplicity! Besides, if it gets too complicated, you lose your target audience.
Happy 30th Birthday to me.
- so I can sigh eternally -