E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

Steven Spielberg’s splendidly entertaining family movie has been duplicated so many times that it’s sometimes easy to forget just how well-done and satisfying it is. Everything here is pretty much perfectly thought through: The score by John Williams is majestic, the acting is sincere (especially Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace and a very young Drew Barrymore), while the special effects are first-rate and there are enough plot turns to keep things interesting and exciting. The first half has most of the movie’s famous moments, while the second half takes a turn for the emotional and occasionally heartbreaking, all leading to one of the most effective and memorable climaxes in modern cinema history. There are few movies quite as famous or as beloved as “E.T.” and it’s not hard to see why it’s such an enduring, beloved classic.

Rating: ★★★★★ (out of 5)

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