4. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Directed by Steven Spielberg. Written by Lawrence Kasdan. Story by George Lucas and Philip Kaufman.
Starring Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman, John Rhys-Davies, Ronald Lacey.
I have no memory of the first time I saw 'Raiders.' I was nine when this came out in the summer of 1981, so I could have seen this in the theater. My dad would definitely have taken me. However, I have a feeling I probably first saw it on cable a year or so later. For the record, this is the only film in the top 10 I saw as a child.
Every so often I try to convince myself to work 'Raiders' down the list, but then I catch a few minutes on cable or I pop the DVD into the machine and I have such a visceral reaction that reminds me how much I freakin' love this film. 'Raiders'--along with 'Jaws' and 'Star Wars'--is the best possible summer blockbuster. It's got such a great balance of intelligence and a sense of fun. Sadly my reaction to 'Raiders' is so atavistic that I find it difficult to analyze the film. So I won't.