On Sunday, Aug. 3, legendary director John Landis turns 64, and in his long and storied career in Hollywood, the celebrated filmmaker has managed to create some of the most influential and beloved movies the world has ever enjoyed.
To celebrate and honor this iconic crafter of comedies and headmaster of horror, here are John Landis' five highest-rated cinematic masterpieces, based on their Rotten Tomatoes score.
#5. The Kentucky Fried Movie
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 80%
Directed by Landis, but written by David Zucker, Jerry Zucker and Jim Abrahams – the men who brought us Airplane! – The Kentucky Fried Movie is a collection of totally random, bizarre and downright hilarious comedy sketches. No plot to speak of, the film is just a wonderful hodgepodge of 1970s weirdness.
#4. The Blues Brothers
RT Score: 87%
Based on a set of characters John Belushi and Dan Aykroyd created for Saturday Night Live in the late '70s, the film tells the story of two irresponsible blues musicians and brothers who try to get the money needed to save their childhood orphanage by getting their band back together for one last show. Plus, it has a murderous Carrie Fisher with a machine gun and a rocket launcher. This should be No. 1.
#3. Trading Places
RT Score: 88%
The plot of Trading Places is a little bit complicated, but basically it's about two super-rich jerks who make a bet which involves turning a poor street hustler into a rich Wall Street broker, and they manipulate a wealthy yuppie into becoming poor. The two victims of their machinations finally meet up and seek revenge. It's just such a solid film that it remains one of the high watermarks in the world of 1980s comedies.
#2. Animal House
RT Score: 91% (44 Reviews)
No one needs to be told what Animal House is about. It was the first great college fraternity film that influenced hundreds or perhaps thousands of films to follow. Still one of the most quoted and most beloved movies the world over.
#1. An American Werewolf in London
RT Score: 91% (45 Reviews)
Two American tourists get in over their head when they get attacked by a werewolf while on a walking tour of Britain. The way this film mixes horror and dark comedy is simply astounding, and is arguably one of the only werewolf films with truly terrifying transformation effects.