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Top 10 Simpsons Movie Spoofs

VO: Rebecca Brayton

Written by Nick Spake

No family does satire quite like the Simpsons. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Movie Parodies in The Simpsons.

For this list, we’re taking a look at the funniest film sendups from this iconic animated sitcom. More weight has been given to the entries in which the majority of an episode’s plot parodies a movie, but we’re including those that just parody scenes too. We’ve excluded musical parodies because that’s a list for another day.

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No family does satire quite like the Simpsons. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Movie Parodies in The Simpsons.

For this list, we’re taking a look at the funniest film sendups from this iconic animated sitcom. More weight has been given to the entries in which the majority of an episode’s plot parodies a movie, but we’re including those that just parody scenes too. We’ve excluded musical parodies because that’s a list for another day.

#10: “2001: A Space Odyssey” (1968)

“The Simpsons” has poked fun at “2001” on multiple occasions, referencing HAL 9000, the Star Gate, and the Starchild. This Season 3 episode most notably paid homage to the film’s “Dawn of Man” scene, as a man-ape version of Homer discovers the black Monolith. Marking a significant turning point in human evolution, the other man-apes begin to discover tools. Homer, however, merely discovers a new napping spot. Despite being a dream sequence, this parody sums up Homer Simpson in a nutshell. He’s a primitive creature who will never fully evolve. Based on the way he sleeps, Homer could very well be the missing link between man and ape.

#9: “Alien” (1979)

Much like the previous entry, “The Simpsons” has referenced the “Alien” franchise multiple times. Santa’s Little Helper assumes the role of the alien here, causing mass hysteria upon breaking into Springfield Elementary School’s air ducts. It’s up to Groundskeeper Willie to save the day while Principal Skinner monitors their activity via scanner. The visuals and music wonderfully mimic the claustrophobic suspense from Ridley Scott’s original film. Of course, Bart’s lovable mutt isn’t nearly as threatening as a Xenomorph, so the greased Scotsman fortunately doesn’t meet the same grim fate as Dallas. Superintendent Chalmers really should’ve made way for Willie, though.

#8: “The Great Escape” (1963)

Ayn Rand School for Tots is comparable to a POW camp for little Maggie and her fellow babies. After the firm daycare owner takes away her beloved pacifier, Maggie looks to “The Great Escape” for inspiration. Being a natural born leader, the youngest Simpson rallies her fellow babies to reclaim their pacifiers. A failed attempt lands Maggie in The Box, which is the playpen equivalent of the cooler from the World War II flick. Like Steve McQueen’s Cooler King, she at least has a ball to bounce against the wall. This parody wouldn’t be complete without composer Elmer Bernstein’s march theme from the 1963 film. The music makes Maggie’s antics all the more exciting and triumphant, especially when she finally snatches the keys to liberation.

#7: “Pulp Fiction” (1994)

In the vein of what’s arguably Quentin Tarantino’s magnum opus, this classic episode tells several short stories that occasionally intertwine. The episode literally turns into a “Pulp Fiction” parody following a conversation about fast food items. Chief Wiggum is still hungry after consuming his Krusty Burger with Cheese and Krusty partially gelatinated non-dairy gum-based beverage, prompting him to get some doughnuts. Matters take an unexpected turn when jailbird Snake crashes into the bumbling police chief. Like Butch and Marsellus Wallace, both men wind up at the mercy of a shady storeowner. Before Zed can show up, however, the last person you’d ever expect comes to the rescue. Way to “get medieval” on him, Millhouse!

#6: “Citizen Kane” (1941)

Charles Foster Kane and Charles Montgomery Burns have a great deal in common. Aside from being incredibly wealthy and sharing the same first name, both men were deprived of a proper childhood. Instead of a sled called Rosebud, Mr. Burns’ loss of childhood innocence is epitomized through a teddy bear named Bobo. Realizing how empty he is inside, Burns sets out to reclaim his long-lost teddy, which has come into Maggie’s possession. In addition to being a funny parody, this episode also encompasses the same poignant moral behind “Citizen Kane:” all the money and power in the world can’t buy everything. Once Mr. Burns learns this valuable lesson, he’s finally reunited with his beloved bear… temporarily anyway.

#5: “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” (1991)

After years of loving thy neighbor, Ned Flanders finally wins over Homer Simpson. Ned’s friendly nature blows up in his face, however, as Homer gets too close for comfort. When it comes to spending time with his new best buddy, Homer is even more determined and unyielding than the T-1000. The Flanders family eventually makes a break for it, but that doesn’t stop the oblivious Homer from pursuing them. With a couple of golf clubs substituting for liquid metal arms, he latches onto their car in the midst of a high-speed chase. This “Terminator 2” reference goes by so quickly that you might not catch it at first. That’s part of what makes it such a brilliant parody, though.

#4: “Goldfinger” (1964)

Hank Scorpio might be the nicest boss Homer’s ever had, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that he’s trying to conquer the East Coast with a doomsday device. Since Scorpio is essentially a Bond baddie, it’s only fitting that he has a nemesis named Mr. Bont. Taking a page from “Goldfinger,” Scorpio attempts to kill his archenemy with a laser. Mr. Bont naturally has a trick up his sleeve, liberating himself from his restraints with a coin. Hilariously unaware that he’s working for a supervillain, Homer leaps into action and tackles the secret agent. Rather than wasting time with another deathtrap, Scorpio has his guards finish the job on the spot. Mr. Bont won’t return.

#3: “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (1981)

Much like the opening to Indy’s debut adventure, this parody slowly builds tension as Bart retrieves Homer’s jar of change. Then when trouble surfaces, it’s nothing but fast-paced action throughout. The Simpson household suddenly stands in for an ancient temple, with Homer acting as a giant boulder, Maggie firing darts, and the closing garage door nearly trapping our hero. In true Indiana Jones fashion, Bart narrowly escapes with both the treasure and his lucky hat. John Williams’ unforgettable musical score is the cherry on top of this priceless scene, which manages to be exhilarating, inventive, and hysterical all at once.

#2: “Cape Fear” (1962; 1991)

This entire episode is a lampoon of “Cape Fear” and its 1991 remake, both of which center on a convicted criminal who stalks a family after being released from prison. Looking to get even with Bart once and for all, a tattoo-riddled Sideshow Bob begins to channel Max Cady. He confronts the Simpson family in a movie theater and hitches a ride under their car. Bob and Max also notably share the same theme music by composer Bernard Herrmann. Even if you’re not familiar with “Cape Fear,” this “Simpsons” episode will still have you laughing every minute. With clever writing, sidesplitting slapstick, timeless characters and a killer musical number, it works as both an ingenious satire and a standalone comedy classic.

Before we get to our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- “Psycho” (1960)

- “Thelma & Louise” (1991)

- “Basic Instinct” (1992)


#1: “The Shining” (1980)

The annual “Treehouse of Horror” special always makes leeway for plenty of spooky satire. If we had to single out one segment as the absolute best, though, it would have to be this sendup of Stanley Kubrick’s psychological horror tour de force. Upon being hired as winter caretakers of Mr. Burns’ mountain lodge, Bart discovers that he possesses a power known as the Shining… er, we mean Shinning. Meanwhile, the lack of TV and beer make Homer a dull boy. In other words, he goes crazy. This segment has one great reference after another, from the blood in the elevator, to the creepy twins in the hallway, to the immortal line, “Here’s Johnny!” With every passing second, the urge to laugh just keeps rising.

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite film parody in “The Simpsons?” For more entertaining Top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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