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The highest ranking film in 1983 was ... Local Hero?



Out of curiosity, I was looking for lists of the best movies of 1983, so I checked the Rotten Tomatoes site to see their rankings. Three films in 1983 maintain a perfect 100 percent "fresh rating," separated into first, second and third place only by the number of reviews.

Third place: Zelig. Second place: Paris, Texas. And first place: Local Hero. I'm surprised, but I'm not sure why. Other movies that score 90 percent or above include: Risky Business (98), The Right Stuff (97), National Lampoon's Vacation (95) and even WarGames (92). All those lesser movies we've honored here at Stuck in the '80s, but never those top three. What gives?

Probably they weren't teen friendly enough to attract my attention when I was just 16 years old. Hell, maybe Local Hero never played in Clearwater, Fla. God knows I didn't live in the center of the cultural universe. So to help our my particular generation...


1. The film, which scored a top ranking of four stars from Roger Ebert, is about an American oil company representative (Peter Riegert from Animal House) who is sent to the fictional village of Ferness on the west coast of Scotland to purchase the property for his company.

2. The film's soundtrack scored by Mark Knopfler (his first movie score) sold better than the movie itself. (The British film earned $5.9 million in the United States.)

3. After the movie came out, many people went in search of the village with the red phone booth. It can be found in the village of Pennan on the Moray Coast, Scotland.

4. It was Al Gore's favorite movie when asked by Oprah Winfrey during her September 11, 2000 program. (He was running for president at the time.)

5. The asteroid "7345 Happer" is named after actor Burt Lancaster's Happer character in this movie who is keen on astronomy. It also fulfilled Lancaster's wish to have a comet named after him.

[Last modified: Tuesday, September 17, 2013 9:43am]


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