My first memory of Robin Williams time warps back to the late 1970’s when he appeared in the tv series Happy Days as an alien. I took an immediate liking to him as a kid and that never let up for the next 40 years in my heart.
His impromptu genius and ability to impersonate over any spectrum and change on a dime took him to an elite level beyond reproach. When I heard the sad news tonight that he had passed I immediately wanted to do a Top 10 Robin Williams Movie list as a tribute to ease my mourning.
Thank you to You Tube, Wikipedia and IMDB for their assistance in my research. So without further ado please enjoy my Top 10 Robin Williams Movies list.
10 What Dreams May Come (1998)
Question – When Chris goes to the city in Heaven where people are flying around what other notable characters can be seen?
For those of you that ponder, question or possibly worry about the afterlife, or if there is one. This movie will really make your head spin. I’m so thrilled that it has such a beautiful ending but in the beginning of being in Heaven and hurting? That’s a contradiction for most and add to that not being able to communicate with those you love and wanting to. Oddly enough, an ironic event occurs in the film that is eerie to this August 11th day, 2014.
Answer – Characters from “Peter Pan” (Wendy, Michael, John) and “Mary Poppins” (Mary Poppins).
9 Jumanji (1995)
Question – This was filmed and set in New Hampshire but this is one of the few U.S. States to not have what?
I loved both the incredible imagination and adventure this movie took me on. There was great suspense and tension along with some absolutely hysterical moments.
Answer – A zoo.
8 The World According To Garp (1982)
Question – John Lithgow was nominated for an Oscar in drag in The World According To Garp at the 1983 Academy Awards. What two other films and three actors were nominated for the same award that year?
This is based on a John Irving novel and while it is on the lower end of my Top 10 Robin Williams Movies list, the movie got some notice and acclaim. It’s a fascinating story that at some points dives into madness and swings around to sadness. It’s one of those movies you keep questioning as to why you are watching it, yet you continue to do so.
Answer – Dustin Hoffman for Tootsie and Julie Andrews and Robert Preston for Victor Victoria.
7 The Birdcage (1996)
Question – What was unique about Robin Williams’ slip and fall during the “shrimp” scene?
If you watched the video clip above it contains part of the hilarious toast scene between Robin Williams and Nathan Lane. It had Director Mike Nichols laughing so hard that he had to be covered with a sound blanket. And that’s just it, if you want some deep down belly laughs this movie will do it for you.
Answer – That was unscripted, he really did fall, and he and Hank Azaria are holding back laughter.
6 Awakenings (1990)
Question – What happened in the scene where Dr. Sayer and the security guards are attempting to restrain Leonard?
I’ve been to a State Hospital (through my previous work as a medic) more times than I can count. They are very unpleasant yet bless those that work there to help the patients. This movie reminded me a lot of that though Robin Williams character is actually working specifically with catatonic patients. The emotion line of the film goes from low to high and back to low yet in the end a deep bond has been made.
Answer – Robin Williams accidentally hit Robert De Niro in the face with his elbow, breaking De Niro’s nose. De Niro later commented that his nose had been broken before, in the opposite direction, and this injury actually straightened it back out.
5 Dead Poets Society (1989)
Question – Do you know how poetry is rated? Neither did I until I found this.
Because of the incredible similarities between actual historic events and this movie, it is often shown to fraternity members during leadership seminars. Those historical events led to the creation of fraternal organizations at universities in the United States in the late 18th century.
It got dicey from here to #1 on my Top 10 Robin Williams Movies list because any of them could have landed in the spot.
Answer – It is the mathematical formula by Dr. J. Evans Pritchard – PxI=G.
4 One Hour Photo (2002)
Question – What happened at the Sundance Film Festival that made Robin Williams proud?
He shaved most of his entire visible body for this film because of his extraordinarily hairy body. Remember those little drive up windows where you get your photos processed in an hour? Did you ever pause to think that someone was looking at them? Hey, even if it was of a tree or your pet it always felt intrusive. This movie will magnify that concern ten fold.
Answer – He overheard viewers say they forgot it was Williams in the lead role 15 minutes into the film.
3 Good Will Hunting (1997)
Question – Who did producer Harvey Weinstein initially not want in the film?
“It’s not your fault” in the title references when Sean was holding Will and repeatedly telling him those four words to release a life long pain the kid had. This would be so true for a great many of us in our life. Robin Williams has a few humorous moments but I loved this much more intense, wise, mentoring character he played. And yet he is also haunted by a pain of his own and the patient unintentionally helps the therapist too.
Answer– Minnie Driver for the role of Skylar, because he felt she wasn’t cute enough. Because Gus, Matt and Ben wanted her in the movie, Weinstein ultimately relented and Driver went on to scoop a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination for her efforts. Ha, in your face Weinstein!
2 Mrs Doubtfire (1993)
Question – What really happened in the scene where Mrs Sellner comes to inspect Daniel’s apartment and Daniel/Mrs. Doubtfire is serving her tea?
First and foremost this movie and Robin Williams character sings praises as to what lengths a father would go to be with his children. It’s absolutely ingenious to cleverly dress up as a nanny and of course an entire cascade of comedy ensues. It’s a feel good movie and we all need those.
Answer – The icing on his/her face is melting off. This was not intentional. The heat from the set lights melted the icing on his face and Robin Williams ad-libbed that scene.
1 Good Morning, Vietnam (1987)
Question – What was unique about each of Robin Williams (Adrian Cronauer’s) broadcasts in the film?
Here is the landing spot for #1 on my Top 10 Robin Williams Movies list and a big part of that is my trivia question answer. Add into that the indirect look it took at the Vietnam war from a radio entertainer’s perspective and the positive effect he had on the troops. It really stuck with me and made an impact in this movie portraying the real life radio genius, Adrian Cronauer himself.
Answer – He ad-libbed every single one of them. Wow!
As you can see your movies, persona and real life person really touched me as a fan Robin Williams. Thank you for all of those years and you will be greatly missed.
What is your favorite Robin Williams movie?
Phoenix and I are giving a shout out to our friend, Balroop, at Emotional Shadows! She is a nature lover, former teacher, an educationalist, a passionate reader and a published writer. She has a love for nature and writes a beautiful blog of thought, insight and sharing. I often “walk away” from one of her posts deep in thought after leaving a comment. I tell her from time to time that she reminds me of my aunt who has had an immensely strong spiritual impact on my life. It’s always a big compliment to you, our friend! Thank you so much for your support to Phoenix and I, Balroop! Please go check out her blog now at Emotional Shadows here!