I have often wondered, what are my favourite films of all time. I managed to get 55 of them. I would like to share this list with you.
Here’s the earlier lists:
Let us continue.
50: TRUE ROMANCE (1993)
Director: Tony Scott
Writer: Quentin Tarantino
Christian Slater plays Clarence, who works at a comic book store and has the spirit of Elvis to talk to. One day he meets a whore -sorry, a call-girl- named Alabama and instantly falls in love with her. Then he ends up killing her pimp and runs away with her carrying a bag full of coke that Clarence took with him from the dead pimp. The coke belongs to the mob and they obviously want it back. Phone booth sex and dead bodies ensue. Whoa, talk about a cool movie. It’s obvious the script is the most personal Tarantino ever wrote. It’s easy to see that Clarence is modeled pretty much by Tarantino himself. He didn’t like the way director Tony Scott treated the material, but I think he was absolutely the right guy for the job. Scott shoots the flick with a sharp sense of commercial style which is somewhat lacking in Tarantino’s own direction. True Romance has a killer cast (dare I say the best ensemble cast ever?), cool script and the director drapes the film with a sense of cool that doesn’t come by often.
What I Love About It: Gary Oldman as Drexl. Brad Pitt in his stoner role. The shootout at the end that was so cool, that Tony Scott had to do it again in Enemy Of The State.
Best Quote: ”He must have thought it was white boy day. It ain’t white boy day, is it?”
49. KILL BILL: VOL. 1 (2003)
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Writer: Quentin Tarantino
Kill Bill: Vol. 1 is my favourite Tarantino movie. It’s heavily influenced by Asian martial arts cinema and it makes a riveting action-spectacle with great writing, fantastic cast and Tarantino had honed his directorial skills to perfection. Uma Thurman is very convincing as the Bride, an ass-kicker with a mission to avenge her brutal mugging to his former teammates and to have revenge to the man who shot her almost dead: his former boss and lover, Bill. The movie has great action scenes, good humor, strong writing (as always with QT) and great visual flare. It’s a shame that the second part couldn’t quite compare with the brilliance of this one…
What I Love About It: The colorful cinematography by Robert Richardson, the action, O-Ren Ishii’s animated backstory. Sonny Chiba’s Hattori Hanso.
Best Quote: ”The woman deserves her revenge and we deserve to die.” (Unfortunately they piss on this line in the second one.)
48. SE7EN (1995)
Director: David Fincher
Writer: Andrew Kevin Walker
Se7en is hands down the best serial killer movie. Ever. After managing to make a good movie out of the mess that was Alien3, director David Fincher got a really good script from Andrew Kevin Walker. And oh boy, did he direct a classic thriller. His gritty and dirty look makes the streets of L.A. utterly unrecognizable. The idea of a serial killer murdering people using the seven deadly sins as a guide could’ve been a ridiculous plot in the hands of lesser filmmakers, but they manage to get the viewer to invest heavily into the story. The mind of a twisted, but somehow logical maniac is a scary place and the two lead detectives get slowly pulled closer into the insanity resulting in a confrontation at the end that the viewer will never forget. Scary, thrilling and shocking, this one has it all.
What I Love About It: Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt. Darius Khondji’s masterful DP work. John Doe (and the guy playing him is marvelous).
Best Quote: ”Fuckin’ Dante… poetry-writing faggot! Piece of shit, motherfucker!”
47. THE LAST SAMURAI (2003)
Director: Edward Zwick
Writers: John Logan, Edward Zwick & Marshall Herskowitz
Tom Cruise plays Nathan Ahlgren, a Captain who is haunted by the killing of the Native Americans in the Civil War. He gets an offer to train the Japanese military to fight against rebelling Samurai warriors. In his first encounter with the Samurai Nathan gets imprisoned and sent to an enemy village where he meets Katsumoto, the leader of the Samurai warriors. Their mutual intrigue and respect to each other eventually turn into camaradery and friendship. Nathan learns to live in the village as one of them and soon turns against the Japanese military and fights next to the Samurai to defend the village and their way of life. The Last Samurai is poetic, calm and beautiful. Edward Zwick totally got the serenity of Japanese lifestyle of days long gone. The movie has its fair share of bombastic action scenes, but they’re entirely serving the story. Hans Zimmer does one of his best work here, giving the film a beautiful score that tug the heartstrings. It’s a skillfully shot adventure that has its heart at the right place. Absolutely gorgeous film.
What I Love About It: Ken Watanabe, Tom Cruise and Hiroyuki Sanada as the quiet bad-ass Samurai. The enemy Captain (at least I remember it was a Captain) crying when he witnesses the tragedy in the battle field.
Best Quote: “Tell me how he died?” “I will tell you how he lived.”
46. THE KID (1921)
Director: Charles Chaplin
Writer: Charles Chaplin
No, I’m not talking about the Bruce Willis one. The Kid is one of the best movies of the silent era, and one of the best movies actually ever made. I know many consider The Dictator or Modern Times to be the superior Charles Chaplin film, but there’s something honest and sweet about The Kid that makes me think this is the best movie Chaplin made. Once again Chaplin plays the Tramp who stumbles on this young orphan baby and the Tramp decides to make a home for him. When the baby grows up to be a young boy her mother shows up searching for the kid. Will the Tramp have to let go of the boy to the authorities? The physical humor is still there, but his time Chaplin is more interested to make the viewer feel sadness and happiness. And he succeeds gloriously. The story is so simple that almost anyone can relate to it and the theme of letting go of those we love is universal and timeless. It’s a magnificent experience and it will leave you feeling warm inside.
What I Love About It: Chaplin (duh!), Jackie Coogan as the kid. The perfect balance of humor and drama.
Best Quote: “A comedy with a smile–and perhaps a tear”.