Top Ten Films of 1981: World Premieres
 Top Ten by U.S. Release Date (Updated) // My 1981 Oscar Ballot (Updated)

1. Pennies from Heaven Dir. Herbert Ross. With Steve Martin, Bernadette Peters, Jessica Harper A
2. Reds Dir. Warren Beatty. With Warren Beatty, Diane Keaton, Jack Nicholson, Paul Sorvino A–
3. Mephisto Dir. István Szabó. With Klaus Maria Brandauer, Ildikó Bánsági, Krystyna Janda A–
4. The Animals Film Dir. Victor Schonfeld. Documentary about animal exploitation and abuse A–
5. Pixote Dir. Hector Babenco. With Fernando Ramos da Silva, Jorge Juliao, Gilberto Moura B+
6. Raiders of the Lost Ark Dir. Steven Spielberg. With Harrison Ford, Karen Allen B+

Reviews from 1981
= Full-Length Review / © = Capsule-Length Review /  = Blog/Favorites Review (New Window)
 
   Chariots of Fire Dir. Hugh Hudson. With Ian Charleson, Ben Cross, Nigel Havers B–
   Pennies from Heaven Dir. Herbert Ross. With Steve Martin, Bernadette Peters, Jessica Harper A

More Grades from 1981
Unreviewed titles I have seen recently enough to grade
 
      Arthur Dir. Steve Gordon. With Dudley Moore, Liza Minnelli, John Gielgud, Jill Eikenberry C+
      Body Heat Dir. Lawrence Kasdan. With William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Richard Crenna B–
      The French Lieutenant's Woman Dir. Karel Reisz. With Meryl Streep, Jeremy Irons C+
      Memoirs of a Survivor Dir. David Gladwell. With Julie Christie, Christopher Guard B
      On Golden Pond Dir. Mark Rydell. With Henry Fonda, Katharine Hepburn, Doug McKeon B
      Possession Dir. Andrzej Zulawski. With Sam Neill, Isabelle Adjani, Heinz Bennent B
 

Also from 1981
The memories are fading, but they're somewhere in my brain
 
Fetching
      Mommie Dearest Dir. Frank Perry. With Faye Dunaway, Diana Scarwid, Steve Forrest
      Only When I Laugh Dir. Glenn Jordan. With Marsha Mason, Kristy MacNichol, James Coco
 
Fair
      Diva Dir. Jean-Jacques Beineix. With Frédéric Andrei, Richard Bohringer, Thuy An Luu
      The Fox and the Hound Dir. Art Stevens. Animated. Voices of Kurt Russell, Mickey Rooney
      Raggedy Man Dir. Jack Fisk. With Sissy Spacek, Eric Roberts, Henry Thomas, William Sanderson
      Scanners Dir. David Cronenberg. With Stephen Lack, Patrick McGoohan, Michael Ironside
 
Feh
      Absence of Malice Dir. Sydney Pollack. With Paul Newman, Sally Field, Josef Sommer, Don Hood

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