Starting With #1
By Broadway Magazine Staff
To celebrate the arrival of Spike Lee’s film of Passing Strange, we offer you an eclectic list of some of the favorite Musical Movies of all Time. Of course, no list can be definitive and with movies like Nine, Wicked, and a new Fame on the way, this list will be dated soon too. We’ve tried to tuck in some surprises to add a little spice. Take a look and let us know what we’ve missed. While we love all musicals more on-stage, we like these movies just fine too.
1. Singin’ In The Rain (1952) You were expecting something else?
2. West Side Story (1961) Perfect in every way.
3. The Wizard Of Oz (1939) Is there a song or image here that isn’t classic.
4. The Sound Of Music (1965) One of our favorite things.
5. Chicago (2002) Remains one of the best of all time. Brilliant musical done well.
6. All That Jazz (1979) Haunting, thrilling, amusing, and inside the mind of Fosse.
7. My Fair Lady (1964) Can’t stop watching it.
8. An American In Paris (1951) Not for all folks, but we love it.
9. Oklahoma! (1955) The land we belong to is grand.
10. Cabaret (1972) Gritty and sad, this one stays with you for a long time.
11. Oliver! (1968) Brilliant, unforgettable songs.
12. The Lion King (1994) We can feel the love.
13. Grease (1978) It’s the one that we want. Makes you smile everytime.
14. Hello, Dolly! (1969) This one is an essential.
15. Beauty And The Beast (1991) Started a revolution of sorts. Brilliant.
16. Babes In Arms (1939) If you are looking for a classic, this is it.
17. Show Boat (1936) Of course.
18. Brigadoon (1954) Fun, clever, and a starry cast.
19. Seven Brides For Seven Brothers (1954) Dance is the star…what are other great Dance films?
20. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942) My father thanks you, my mother thanks you, my sister thanks you, and I thank you.
21. The Music Man (1962) Robert Preston is a king.
22. Godspell (1973) Did you think we’d forget? No Way.
23. Fiddler On The Roof (1971) Tradition and traditionally on our top 100
24. The Umbrellas Of Cherbourg (1964) Tres Bon. Don’t miss it.
25. Purple Rain (1984) Not quite Broadway, but music and story weave together well. Party like its 1999 or 2009 or 1989…or something.
26. 42nd Street (1933) The quintessential Broadway story. Great songs and dancing.
27. HAIR (1979) Once you see it, you don’t forget it.
28. Kiss Me Kate (1953) Ok, should be higher, but we love a little spice.
29. Moulin Rouge! (2001) The singing is ok, the spectacle is amazing.
30. Guys And Dolls (1955) The musical is its own universe. Marlon Brando sings.
31. Gypsy (1962) Not perfect, but a perfect musical.
32. Anchors Aweigh (1945) Fan favorite.
33. Hum Aapke Hain Koun? (1994) Bollywood magic, with a wedding and more.
34. Hairspray (2007) You can’t stop the beat…
35. Marat/Sade (1967) Who said musicals had to be fun? We want a revolution NOW.
36. The Gay Divorcee (1934) Pure classic and not to be missed.
37. The Muppet Movie (1979) The Rainbow Connection, stars, puppets, sweet.
38. Babes In Toyland ( 1934) Toyland…Laurel and Hardy. Check it out.
39. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1970) Time Warp, future-stars, transvestites, sweet.
40. Meet Me In St. Louis (1944) Feels timeless. Judy Garland, of course.
41. Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory (1971) If you want to view paradise, view it.
42. Words and Music (1948) Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland with Rodgers and Hart.
43. Gold Diggers of 1933 (1933) We’re in the money…or we’re in the recession, I mean.
44. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) Two words: Johnny Depp? No- Stephen Sondheim!
45. The King And I (1956) Getting to know you. Classic.
46. South Park: Bigger, Longer, Uncut (1999) Got several fan votes, and should be on the stage.
47. Jailhouse Rock (1957) Had to have an Elvis. Loving You is also great.
48. Aladdin (1992) A whole new, magical world. Solid.
49. The Band Wagon (1953) Fred Astaire directed by Vincent Minelli. Gems from Comden and Green.
50. Bye Bye Birdie (1963) Put on a Happy Face!
51. Easter Parade (1948) Can’t stop singing this.
52. Fame (1980) We sing the body electric.
53. Damn Yankees! (1958) Whatever Lola wants. Play ball.
54. Porgy and Bess (1959) Haunting score and story.
55. Pinocchio (1940) An actor’s life for me. Should come to the stage.
56. South Pacific (1958) Not as good as the revival, but still great.
57. Annie Get Your Gun (1950) There’s no business like show business.
58. Carmen Jones (1954) Dorothy Dandridge and Harry Belafonte, based on the opera.
59. The Little Mermaid (1989) This one has legs.
60. The Wiz (1978) Ease on down the road! Starry cast, classic story, fresh twists.
61. Stormy Weather (1943) Lena Horne, Fats Waller, see when you can.
62. Kismet (1964) Old time, popcorn musical.
63. Dreamgirls (2006) A fan favorite to be sure.
64. The Jazz Singer (1927) This is the one that started it all. We actually prefer the Neil Diamond version. Laurence Olivier in a musical.
65. Mamma Mia! (2008) The most popular movie in the history of England.
66. Funny Girl (1968) Don’t miss this one.
67. On The Town (1949) All-star cast with great songs and New York City for real.
68. Thoroughly Modern Millie (1967) Sassy fun.
69. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1970) Cult classic, with legs…thanks to Tim Curry. Meatloaf on the side.
70. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953)
71. Mary Poppins (1964) Let’s go fly a kite…or rent this movie. Delightful.
72. Annie (1982) It’s a hard knock musical movie adaptation, and we love it.
73. Top Hat (1935) Puts the silver in “silver screen.”
74. Pal Joey (1957) Remains worth watching.
75. Little Shop Of Horrors (1986) We liked it better than most.
76. Carousel (1956) We love it on-stage
77. Gigi (1958) Thank heavens!
78. Pennies From Heaven (1981) Dennis Potter via Steve Martin. Bernadette Peters and Christopher Walken are amazing.
79. Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs (1937) How long until this takes to the stage.
80. Victor/Victoria (1982) Cheeky fun with Julie Andrews and Robert Preseton. Bend a gender.
81. Camelot (1967) Still the king.
82. Anything Goes (1936) Cole Porter is the king.
83. White Christmas (1954) & Holiday Inn (1942) We love White Christmas, but don’t want to forget the little film that started it all.
84. Yentl (1983) Barbara Streisand does it all.
85. Popeye (1980) A true Robert Altman musical. It am what it am…and is better than you think.
86. How To Succeed In Business w/o Really Trying (1967) Fun enough for the top 100.
87. Tommy (1975) Over the top, glam and glorious. Time for a remake?
88. Naughty Marietta (1935) Jeannette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy…not as a mountie.
89. Across the Universe (2007) Julie Taymour eye-candy with Beatles’ ear candy.
90. A Chorus Line (1985) Pales next to Bob Fosse’s All That Jazz, but great to experience.
91. Mame (1974) We love Lucy.
92. A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To the Forum (1966) Zero Mostel with Comedy Tonight.
93. The Pajama Game (1957) Hey there, don’t look it over.
94. Jesus Christ Superstar (1973) Not quite Godspell, but still heavenly.
95. 1776 (1972) Underappreciated. We love our founding fathers singing. Sit down, John!
96. The Unsinkable Molly Brown (1964) Debbie Reynolds classic role.
97. The Phantom of the Opera (2004) Can’t live up to the stage version, but does well enough.
98. Yellow Submarine (1968) All you need is love. Hard Day’s Night may be the better Beatles movie, but this is the best Beatles musical.
99. Xanadu (1980) #99 with a bullet. Thank you, Douglas Carter Beane!
100. RENT (2005)We know, we know…but we still love it.