Friday, August 30, 2013

Top Ten Box Office Hits of 1982

The year was 1982.
In world news: The British overcame Argentina in the Falklands War, Israel invaded Lebanon in an attack on the PLO, Princess Grace died from injuries resulting from when her car plunged off a mountain road, and Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev died at the age of 75.
In US news: John Hinckley, Jr. was found not guilty in shooting President Reagan because of insanity, Alexander Haig, Jr. resigned as Secretary of State, and the Equal Rights Amendment failed ratification.
In other news, Michael Jackson released his "Thriller" album, John Belushi died of a drug overdose, and "Cats" opened on Broadway, becoming Broadway's longest running production.  Thomas Keneally released his book, "Schindler's List" and Alice Walker released her novel, "The Color Purple", both eventually being made to film and becoming Box Office hits.
What films were Box Office sensations in 1982?  Well, out of 100 films, a very revealing "Summer Lovers" ranked #99, an excellent soundtrack possibly helped "The Last American Virgin" reach #90, Agatha Christie's "Evil Under the Sun" was #87, a very long and foreign "Das Boot" ranked #65, Michael Caine kissed Christopher Reeve in #43's "Deathtrap", Mel Gibson continued fighting the bad guys in "The Road Warrior" which achieved position #31, "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" was #29, Arnold Schwarzenegger showed off his bulging muscles in "Conan the Barbarian" which reached #17, Sylvester Stallone proved he was a force to be reckoned with in #13's "First Blood", and the Oscar-winning film "Ghandi" attained the #12 position.
That being said, let's countdown the Top Ten Box Office Hits of 1982...

In the depths of the 1930's, Annie is a fiery young orphan girl who must live in a miserable orphanage run by the tyrannical Miss Hannigan. Her seemingly hopeless situation changes dramatically when she is selected to spend a short time at the residence of the wealthy munitions industrialist, Oliver Warbucks. Quickly, she charms the hearts of the household staff and even the seemingly cold-hearted Warbucks cannot help but learn to love this wonderful girl.  "Annie" starred Albert Finney, Carol Burnett, Ann Reinking, Bernadette Peters, Tim Curry, Aileen Quinn as the lovable "Annie".  Nominated for two Academy Awards, this film earned over $57 million at the Box Office.
A town Sheriff and regular patron fights to keep a historical whorehouse open when a TV preacher targets it as the Devils Playhouse.  "The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" starred Burt Reynolds, Dolly Parton, Dom DeLuise, Charles Durning, and Jim Nabors.  At the Box Office, this musical brought in over $69.7 million.
A young family are visited by ghosts in their home. At first the ghosts appear friendly, moving objects around the house to the amusement of everyone, then they turn nasty and start to terrorise the family before they "kidnap" the youngest daughter.  Directed by Tobe Hooper, "Poltergeist" starred Craig T. Nelson, JoBeth Williams, Beatrice Straight, Dominique Dunne, Oliver Robins, Zelda Rubinstein, and Heather O'Rourke as the memorable "Carol Anne".  Freaking out audiences world-wide, this film grossed over $76.6 million at the Box Office.
A hard-nosed cop reluctantly teams up with a wise-cracking criminal temporarily paroled to him, in order to track down a killer.  This was Eddie Murphy's film debut who was nominated for a Golden Globe for his performance.  "48 Hrs." also starred Nick Nolte, Annette O'Toole, Frank McRae, and James Remar.  With the hit song, "(The Boys Are) Back In Town", this film earned $78,868,508 at the Box Office.
With the aid of the Enterprise crew, Admiral Kirk must stop an old nemesis, Khan Noonien Singh, from using his son's life-generating device, the Genesis Device, as the ultimate weapon.  The sequel to its 1979 mega-hit, "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" had William Shatner, Leonard Nimoy, DeForest Kelley, James Doohan, Walter Koenig, George Takei, and Nichelle Nichols reprising their infamous roles.  With Ricardo Montalban playing the evil Khan, this film just edged past "48 Hrs.", bringing in $78,912,963.
Set in 1954, a group of Florida high schoolers seek out to help a buddy lose his virginity, which leads them to seek revenge on a sleazy nightclub owner and his redneck sheriff brother for harassing them.  A hilarious comedy, "Porky's" starred Dan Monahan, Mark Herrier, Wyatt Knight, Roger Wilson, Cyril O'Reilly, Tony Ganios, Kaki Hunter, and a "howling" Kim Cattrall (if you've seen the film, you know what I'm talking about).  This film careened past its competition at the Box Office and grossed over $105.4 million.
Part 3 to its original Oscar-winning film, "Rocky III" finds Rocky defeated by brutal challenger, Clubber Lang.  Seeking assistance from his former rival, Rocky lets Apollo Creed retrain him in order to get back his fighting spirit.  Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, and Burgess Meredith reprised their roles and "I pity the fool!" Mr. T co-starred.  Also, look for scene with former wrestler, Hulk Hogan as "Thunderlips".  This film didn't have to fight "Porky's" too hard to earn over $124.1 million at the Box Office.
With the help of a tough gunnery sergeant and his new girlfriends, a young man must complete his work at a Navy Flight school to become an aviator.  Nominated for 6 Academy Awards, "An Officer and a Gentleman" earned Oscars for Original Song "Up Where We Belong" and Supporting Actor for Louis Gossett, Jr.  The film also starred Richard Gere and Debra Winger and co-starred David Keith, Lisa Blount, and Lisa Eilbacher.  At the Box Office, the film brought in $129.7 million.
Michael Dorsey is an unemployed actor with an impossible reputation. In order to find work and fund his friend's play he dresses as a woman, Dorothy Michaels, and lands the part in a daytime drama.  Directed by Sydney Pollack, "Tootsie" starred Dustin Hoffman, Jessica Lange, Teri Garr, Dabney Coleman, Charles Durning, and Bill Murray.  Audiences continued laughing even after the film was over which helped this film earn over $177.2 million.

A meek and alienated little boy finds a stranded extraterrestrial. He has to find the courage to defy the authorities to help the alien return to its home planet.  Steven Spielberg directed this incredible story which starred Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Peter Coyote, Robert MacNaughton, and Drew Barrymore.  "E.T. the Extra Terrestrial" easy passed by the other films by bringing in over $359.1 million at the Box Office.

And now you know.

Steven Spielberg did quite well as this was the second year in a row his films reached #1 at the Box Office. 

In one way or another, all the films on this Top Ten list have left memorable impressions for audiences world-wide.  Though they came out in the 1983, they're favorites even among young viewers today.

Of the 10 films listed, I've blogged on 4 of them.  You can find them in the column to the right of this screen.  I'll have the pleasure of blogging on the others in the future.

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