The 1,000 Greatest Films (600-501)

The banner image above is from Souleymane Cissé’s Yeelen.
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Dancer in the Dark

Dancer in the Dark

2000 / Denmark-France-Sweden-Italy-Germany-Norway-Netherlands-Iceland-Finland-UK-USA / 140m / Col / Musical Drama, Melodrama
Bjork, Catherine Deneuve, David Morse, Peter Stormare, Joel Grey, Vincent Paterson, Cara Seymour, Jean-Marc Barr, Vladica Kostic, Udo Kier
"Dancer in the Dark is a thrilling, audacious work. The boldest experiment yet from Lars von Trier, one of the Danish founders of the Dogma 95 school of filmmaking, Dancer is the kind of ornery, brilliant film that inspires both adulation and scorn… Dancer in the Dark is so strange, so unlike what we're conditioned to expect from movies, that it's bound to alienate a lot of people… But I think Dancer does what art is meant to do: It provokes us, spurs debate, reconsiders a medium and makes us rethink our world. It's great to see a movie so courageous and affecting, so committed to its own differentness." - Edward Guthmann, San Francisco Chronicle
Selected by Angelina Nikonova, Cyrus Frisch, Isamu Hirabayashi, Charity Wakefield, Oliver Schmitz.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
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Numero deux

Numéro deux

1975 / France / 88m / Col / Avant-garde-Experimental, Essay Film
Sandrine Battistella, Jean-Luc Godard, Pierre Oudrey, Alexandre Rignault, Rachel Stefanopoli
"Often juxtaposing or superimposing two or more video images within the same 'Scope frame, Jean-Luc Godard's remarkable 1975 feature—one of the most ambitious and innovative films in his career—literally deconstructs family, sexuality, work, and alienation before our very eyes. Our ears are given a workout as well; the punning commentary and dialogue, whose overlapping meanings can only be approximated in the subtitles, form part of one of his densest sound tracks… In many respects, this is a film about reverse angles and all that they imply; it forms one of Godard's richest and most disturbing meditations on social reality." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Álvaro Arroba, Daisuke Akasaka, Edgar Pêra, Federico Rossin, Santiago Gallego.
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Gun Crazy

Gun Crazy

Deadly is the Female (original title)
1949 / USA / 86m / BW / Film Noir, Crime Thriller
Peggy Cummins, John Dall, Berry Kroeger, Morris Carnovsky, Anabel Shaw, Harry Lewis, Nedrick Young, Trevor Bardette, Mickey Little, Russ Tamblyn
"If you had to select a single film to justify the present enthusiasm for film noir and define its allure, few movies could compete with Gun Crazy. The same goes for celebrating the potential of B-movies to achieve grade-A flair, excitement, and artistic intelligence. The picture taps brazenly into a sexual, almost feral energy that makes it unique, even in a school of film known for perverse psychology and smoldering subtexts." - Richard T. Jameson, Parallax View
Selected by Jesus Franco, Rinaldo Censi, Hua Jianping, Rafa Cortés, Enno Patalas.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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WALL-E

WALL-E

2008 / USA / 98m / Col / Sci-Fi Adventure, Animation
Ben Burtt, Elissa Knight, Jeff Garlin, Fred Willard, MacInTalk, John Ratzenberger, Kathy Najimy, Sigourney Weaver, Kim Kopf, Lori Alan
"Many will attempt to describe WALL-E with a one-liner. It’s R2-D2 in love. 2001: A Space Odyssey starring The Little Tramp. An Inconvenient Truth meets Idiocracy on its way to Toy Story. But none of these do justice to a film that’s both breathtakingly majestic and heartbreakingly intimate—and, for a good long while, absolutely bereft of dialogue save the squeals, beeps, and chirps of a sweet, lonely robot who, aside from his cockroach pet, is the closest thing to the last living being on earth." - Robert Wilonsky, The Village Voice
Selected by Richard Corliss, Wally Hammond, Leslie Felperin, Kjetil Lismoen, Wendy Ide.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
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Breakfast at Tiffany's

Breakfast at Tiffany's

1961 / USA / 115m / Col / Comedy Drama, Romantic Comedy
Audrey Hepburn, George Peppard, Patricia Neal, Buddy Ebsen, Martin Balsam, Mickey Rooney, John McGiver, Jose-Luis de Villalonga, Dorothy Whitney, Stanley Adams
"Blake Edwards may have directed Breakfast at Tiffany's, and screenwriter George Axelrod certainly did a splendid job of adjusting Truman Capote's novel for the screen, but from the first moment Audrey Hepburn steps out of a cab with her coffee and danish and window shops at Tiffany's after a night on the town, this is her movie, and it's all but impossible to imagine another actress in the role… Between Edwards' frothy pacing, Franz F. Planer's lovely location camerawork, and Henry Mancini's memorable score, Breakfast at Tiffany's is a thoroughly charming and witty valentine to one special woman and the city she loves that still enchants more than 40 years after it first hit the screen." - Mark Deming, Allmovie
Selected by Fernando Lara, Irina-Margareta Nistor, Fernando Mendez-Leite, David Robert Mitchell, Jerry Lewis.
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A Short Film About Killing

A Short Film About Killing

Krótki film o zabijaniu (original title)
1987 / Poland / 85m / Col / Drama, Crime
Miroslaw Baka, Krzysztof Globisz, Jan Tesarz, Zbigniew Zapasiewicz, Barbara Dziekan, Aleksander Bednarz, Jerzy Zass, Zdzislaw Tobiasz, Artur Barcis, Krystyna Janda
"A remarkable Polish feature, expanded by Krzysztof Kieslowski from an episode in his Decalogue, in which each segment illustrates one of the Ten Commandments; the complete series is one of the key works in contemporary world cinema. A Short Film About Killing might be called terminally Polish in its bleak handling of a brutal murder and the public execution of the murderer; winner of the jury prize at Cannes, it’s possibly the most powerful movie ever made about the death penalty." - Jonathan Rosenbaum
Selected by Malgorzata Szumowska, Cyrus Frisch, Khalo Matabane, Marlena Lukasiak, Newton Aduaka.
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My Life as a Dog

My Life as a Dog

Mitt liv som hund (original title)
1985 / Sweden / 101m / Col / Coming-of-Age, Childhood Drama
Anton Glanzelius, Manfred Serner, Anki Liden, Tomas von Bromssen, Melinda Kinnaman, Ing-mari Carlsson, Kicki Rundgren, Lennart Hjulstrom, Leif Erickson, Christina Carlwind
"My Life as a Dog tells the story of Ingemar, a twelve-year-old from a working-class family sent to live with his uncle in a country village when his mother falls ill. There, with the help of the warmhearted eccentrics who populate the town, the boy finds both refuge from his misfortunes and unexpected adventure. Featuring an incredibly mature and unaffected performance by the young Anton Glanzelius, this film is a beloved and bittersweet evocation of the struggles and joys of childhood from Oscar-nominated director Lasse Hallström." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Adam Elliot, Roger Donaldson, Robert Gardner, Nick Broomfield, Craig Johnson.
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Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Monty Python and the Holy Grail

1975 / UK / 90m / Col / Anarchic Comedy, Parody/Spoof
Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones, Eric Idle, Michael Palin, Neil Innes, Connie Booth, Carol Cleveland, Bee Duffell
"Famous for its coconuts-in-lieu-of-horse-hooves-clippity-clop scene, for its testy name-calling between the snooty French and the stoic Brits, and for its trenchant sociopolitical commentary (in response to hearing the legend of Excalibur, a serf wags: "You can't expect to wield supreme executive power just because some watery tart threw a sword at you!"), Monty Python and the Holy Grail is nothing short of brilliant." - Steven Rea, Philadelphia Inquirer
Selected by Guy Benoit, Wu Jueren, Ted Pigeon, Jeffrey Overstreet, David Fincher.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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Placido

Plácido

1961 / Spain / 85m / BW / Comedy
Cassen, Jose Luis Lopez Vazquez, Elvira Quintilla, Manuel Alexandre, Maria Bustos, Maria Frances, Mari Carmen Yepes, Jesus Puche, Roberto Llamas, Amelia de la Torre
"Luis García Berlanga’s Plácido, which García Berlanga co-wrote mostly with Rafael Azcona, is a dark, dazzling, extremely funny satire of the equivocal nature of charity and the hypocrisy of individual and institutional professions of compassion and concern. The frenetic pace of the dialogue, coupled with the intricate complexity of the people-crowded black-and-white mise-en-scène, besides suggesting familiarity with the satirical cinema of Preston Sturges, relates to the desperation of the poor as they struggle to survive." - Dennis Grunes
Selected by Alejandro Amenábar, José Luis Rebordinos, Diego Galán, Javier Angulo, Oti Rodriguez Marchante.
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Dazed and Confused

Dazed and Confused

1993 / USA / 94m / Col / Comedy Drama, Coming-of-Age
Jason London, Joey Lauren Adams, Milla Jovovich, Rory Cochrane, Shawn Andrews, Adam Goldberg, Sasha Jenson, Wiley Wiggins, Michelle Burke, Anthony Rapp
"America, 1976. The last day of school. Bongs blaze, bell-bottoms ring, and rock and roll rocks. Among the best teen films ever made, Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused eavesdrops on a group of seniors-to-be and incoming freshmen. A launching pad for a number of future stars, Linklater’s first studio effort also features endlessly quotable dialogue and a blasting, stadium-ready soundtrack. Sidestepping nostalgia, Dazed and Confused is less about “the best years of our lives” than the boredom, angst, and excitement of teenagers waiting… for something to happen." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Quentin Tarantino, Jon Robertson, David Filipi, Vadim Rizov, Desirée de Fez.
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Purple Rose of Cairo

The Purple Rose of Cairo

1985 / USA / 82m / Col-BW / Comedy, Romantic Fantasy
Mia Farrow, Jeff Daniels, Danny Aiello, Dianne Wiest, Van Johnson, Irving Metzman, Stephanie Farrow, Zoe Caldwell, John Wood, Milo O'Shea
"The Purple Rose of Cairo is audacious and witty and has a lot of good laughs in it, but the best thing about the movie is the way Woody Allen uses it to toy with the very essence of reality and fantasy. The movie is so cheerful and open that it took me a day or two, after I’d seen it, to realize how deeply Allen has reached this time. If it is true, and I think it is, that most of the time we go to the movies in order to experience brief lives that are not our own, then Allen is demonstrating what a tricky self-deception we practice. Those movie lives consist of only what is on the screen, and if we start thinking that real life can be the same way, we are in for a cruel awakening." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Milan Pavlovic, Dennis Doros, Ernesto Diezmartínez, Tien-Hsiang Wen, Youssef Cherif Rizkallah.
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Bigger Than Life

Bigger Than Life

1956 / USA / 95m / Col / Psychological Drama, Family Drama
James Mason, Barbara Rush, Walter Matthau, Robert F. Simon, Roland Winters, Christopher Olsen, Rusty Lane, Rachel Stephens, Kipp Hamilton, Betty Caulfield
"Though ignored at the time of its release, Nicholas Ray’s Bigger Than Life is now recognized as one of the great American films of the 1950s. When a friendly, successful suburban teacher and father (James Mason, in one of his most indelible roles) is prescribed cortisone for a painful, possibly fatal affliction, he grows dangerously addicted to the experimental drug… This Eisenhower-era throat-grabber, shot in expressive CinemaScope, is an excoriating take on the nuclear family. That it came in the day of Father Knows Best makes it all the more shocking—and wildly entertaining." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Quim Casas, Dennis Lim, Violeta Kovacsics, Joe Lawlor, John Semley,.
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They Live by Night

They Live by Night

1948 / USA / 95m / BW / Crime Drama, Film Noir
Farley Granger, Cathy O'Donnell, Howard da Silva, Jay C. Flippen, Helen Craig, Will Wright, Marie Bryant, Ian Wolfe, William Phipps, Harry Harvey
"A key film noir of the 40s, this was Nicholas Ray's first film as a director, and the freshness of his expressionist-documentary style is still apparent and gripping. Farley Granger found one of his few effective roles as the gangly teenager propelled into a life of crime; Cathy O'Donnell is his tough-minded lover, following him across the country through a succession of stolen cars and cramped motel rooms. Much of Wim Wenders's romantic despair can be found here in its original, more extravagant form. The film was drained of its dark poetry when Robert Altman remade it as Thieves Like Us." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Rod Stoneman, Ron Peck, Andrew Tracy, Cristián Jiménez, Ho Yuhang.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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Limite

Limite

Limit (English title)
1931 / Brazil / 114m / BW / Avant-garde/Experimental, Surrealist Film
Olga Breno, Tatiana Rey, Raul Schnoor, Brutus Pedreira, Carmen (1) Santos, Mario Peixoto, Edgar Brasil, Iolanda Bernardes.
"The only film by novelist Mario Peixoto looks like a summation of 1920s silent avant garde techniques that Peixoto absorbed while in Europe, but launches into new dimensions of synthesis that carries the viewer aloft on the feverish velocity of its inspiration. Peixoto practically exhausts the lexicon of silent cinematography with every shot conceivable from the era, but arranges them in a cascading visual pattern of sharp angles, deceptively vast vistas and sumptuous close-ups of worldly surfaces. I can’t think of another film that savors its shots as much as this one, taking each one in long enough that even mundane images ooze with sinister energies." - Kevin B. Lee, Shooting Down Pictures
Selected by Neville de Almeida, Álvaro Arroba, Cesar Zamberlan, Yale Gontijo, Eduardo Nunes.
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Picnic at Hanging Rock

Picnic at Hanging Rock

1975 / Australia / 110m / Col / Mystery, Period Film
Rachel Roberts, Dominic Guard, Helen Morse, Jacki Weaver, Vivean Gray, Kirsty Child, Margaret Nelson, Anne Lambert, Karen Robson, Jane Vallis
"Twenty years after it swept Australia into the international film spotlight, Peter Weir’s stunning 1975 masterpiece remains as ineffable as the unanswerable mystery at its core. A Valentine’s Day picnic at an ancient volcanic outcropping turns to disaster for the residents of Mrs. Appleyard’s school when a few young girls inexplicably vanish on Hanging Rock. A lyrical, meditative film charged with suppressed longings." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Darrell Roodt, Niki Caro, Emma Wilson, Miroslaw Przylipiak, Vlado Skafar.
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A Place in the Sun

A Place in the Sun

1951 / USA / 122m / BW / Romantic Drama, Psychological Drama
Montgomery Clift, Elizabeth Taylor, Shelley Winters, Anne Revere, Keefe Brasselle, Raymond Burr, Fred Clark, Herbert Heyes, Shepperd Strudwick, Frieda Inescort
"When producer-director George Stevens made A Place in the Sun, based on the highly successful novel, An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser, he faced the difficult job of turning a popular book into a worthwhile film… Stevens uses montage, close-ups, and very slow scenes to create an almost dream like atmosphere. The plot moves along slowly but with great fluidity… A Place in the Sun is a significant film not only because of excellent performances elicited from Clift and Taylor, but also because of the society it depicts." - A. Pillai, Film Reference
Selected by Laurent Jullier, Tony Krawitz, David Siegel, Drake Doremus, Joanna Gleason.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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Our Hospitality

Our Hospitality

1923 / USA / 74m / BW / Comedy, Romantic Comedy
Buster Keaton, Natalie Talmadge, Joe Roberts, Ralph Bushman, Craig Ward, Monte Collins, Joe Keaton, Leonard Chapman, Edward Coxen, Jean Dumas
"The main reason why Keaton is funnier and infinitely more 'modern' than Chaplin is that his movies are written, directed and shot as movies, never as excuses for comedy and/or pathos. This was his second feature and first full-length masterpiece, a story about the innocent inheritor of an old feud between Southern families, who carelessly starts dating the girl from the other family. The period setting (1831, the early days of rail travel) is made integral to the action, and all the laughs spring directly from the narrative and the characters. Buster's climactic rescue of his sweetheart from a waterfall is one of his most daringly acrobatic (and most celebrated) gags." - Tony Rayns, Time Out
Selected by David Robinson, Kevin Jackson, Jim Emerson, Geoff Brown, Lee Dong-jin.
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The 39 Steps

The 39 Steps

The Thirty-Nine Steps (alternative spelling)
1935 / UK / 87m / BW / Thriller, Spy Film
Robert Donat, Madeleine Carroll, Godfrey Tearle, Lucy Mannheim, Peggy Ashcroft, John Laurie, Wylie Watson, Helen Haye, Frank Cellier, Peggy Simpson
"A heart-racing spy story by Alfred Hitchcock, The 39 Steps follows Richard Hannay (Donat) as he stumbles upon a conspiracy that thrusts him into a hectic chase across the Scottish moors—a chase in which he is both the pursuer and the pursued—as well as into an unexpected romance with the cool Pamela (Carroll). Adapted from a novel by John Buchan, this classic wrong-man thriller from the Master of Suspense anticipates the director’s most famous works (especially North by Northwest), and remains one of his cleverest and most entertaining films." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Ken Russell, Jane Lamacraft, Jacques Lourcelles, Paul Bartel, Bruce Goldstein.
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Olympia

Olympia

Olympiad (alternative title)
1938 / Germany / 220m / BW / Sports, Documentary
David Albritton, Jack Beresford, Henri de Baillet-Latour, Philip Edwards, Donald Finlay, Wilhelm Frick, Josef Goebbels, Hermann Goring, Ernest Harper, Rudolf Hess
"Riefenstahl, as she demonstrated in the technically brilliant propaganda film Triumph of the Will, had a poet's eye for capturing spectacles on both a grand and intimate scale. Olympia might have been a paean to the Third Reich and the superiority of the German athlete (its prologue, featuring only Aryans in various poses and action sequences, suggests that), but Riefenstahl nimbly sidestepped her Nazi masters to offer if not a completely objective view of the games, at least one which did not stint on the accomplishments of runners, jumpers, and swimmers from many nations and of many ethnic backgrounds." - Tom Wiener, All Movie
Selected by Carrie Rickey, Vigen Galstyan, Joel David, James Card, You Zhengwei.
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Claire's Knee

Claire's Knee

Le Genou de Claire (original title)
1970 / France / 105m / Col / Comedy Drama, Comedy of Manners
Jean-Claude Brialy, Aurora Cornu, Beatrice Romand, Laurence De Monaghan, Michele Montel, Fabrice Luchini, Gerard Falconetti
"The penultimate entry in Eric Rohmer's series of Six Moral Tales, and the loveliest, most crystalline of the lot. With his serenely precise plot structures and camera placements, Rohmer is the greatest logician of the movies; he treats the mysteries of love as if they were math problems, but with such generous concern that he never betrays the humanity of his characters. And so it is appropriate that the hero of his masterpiece is a man who focuses all his learning—cultural, moral, philosophical—on the apparently trivial problem of whether or not to touch the knee of a teenage girl he has met on a vacation." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Molly Haskell, Neil LaBute, Andris Feldmanis, Ken Mogg, Hua Jian.
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Raising Arizona

Raising Arizona

1987 / USA / 92m / Col / Crime Comedy, Domestic Comedy
Nicolas Cage, Holly Hunter, Trey Wilson, John Goodman, William Forsythe, Sam McMurray, Randall 'Tex' Cobb, M. Emmet Walsh, Frances McDormand, T.J. Kuhn
"The superbly labyrinthine plotting of Blood Simple must have been a hard act to follow; praise be, then, to the Brothers Coen for confounding all expectations with this fervently inventive comedy… What makes this hectic farce so fresh and funny is the sheer fertility of the writing, while the lives and times of Hi (Cage), Ed (Hunter) and friends are painted in splendidly seedy colours, turning Arizona into a mythical haven for a memorable gaggle of no-hopers, halfwits and has-beens. Starting from a point of delirious excess, the film leaps into dark and virtually uncharted territory to soar like a comet." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Edgar Wright, Jay Duplass, Lee Unkrich, Trevor Groth, Katey Rich.
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Spartacus

Spartacus

1960 / USA / 184m / Col / Sword-and-Sandal, Historical Epic
Kirk Douglas, Laurence Olivier, Jean Simmons, Tony Curtis, Charles Laughton, Peter Ustinov, John Gavin, Nina Foch, Woody Strode, John Ireland
"Stanley Kubrick directed a cast of screen legends—including Kirk Douglas as the indomitable gladiator that led a Roman slave revolt—in the sweeping epic that defined a genre and ushered in a new Hollywood era. The assured acting, lush Technicolor cinematography, bold costumes, and visceral fight sequences won Spartacus four Oscars; the blend of politics and sexual suggestion scandalized audiences. Today Kubrick’s controversial classic, the first film to openly defy Hollywood’s blacklist, remains a landmark of cinematic artistry and history." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by José Mojica Marins, Mark Jancovich, Philip Saville, Tanvir Mokammel, Carlos Marañón,
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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Dead Man

Dead Man

1995 / USA-Germany / 121m / BW / Hybrid Western, Psychological Western
Johnny Depp, Gary Farmer, Robert Mitchum, Lance Henriksen, Gabriel Byrne, John Hurt, Alfred Molina, Crispin Glover, Michael Wincott, Mili Avital
"With its black-humored tale of a mild Cleveland accountant (Depp) who travels to the Northwest, shoots a man in self-defense and is forced to become a fugitive outlaw, Dead Man contains thematic echoes of Jarmusch's previous work, particularly Down By Law and Mystery Train. And it's as strong as anything else he's done. Jarmusch's trademark quiet irony, affinity for the outcast and oddball, and moonscape visuals suit the Western genre well. And yes, Jarmusch does exercise his hep-cat credentials, assigning soundtrack-composition duties to Neil Young and featuring Iggy Pop in a dress and bonnet." - Maria Schneider, A.V. Club
Selected by Jurgis Krasons, Paul Tickell, Wang Xiaolu, Chow Sze-chung, Sterlin Harjo.
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Xala

Xala

1974 / Senegal / 123m / Col / Comedy, Satire
Fatim Diagne, Makhouredia Gueye, Thieno Leye, Dieynaba Niang, Myriam Niang, Iliamane Sagna, Seune Samb, Abdoulaye Seck, Douta Seck, Younouss Seye
"An invigorating film which tells, in leisurely fashion, of a middle-aged Dakar businessman whose social standing begins to slip when he takes a third wife and finds that he's lost his touch in bed ('xala' means impotence). There's no sniggering humour, though; instead, Sembene aims satirical thrusts at the Senegalese bourgeoisie, who impotently ape the worst aspects of their former colonial masters, particularly their corruption and extravagance (our hero, for instance, uses imported mineral water to wash his car). The jokes and details are delightful, yet there's real anger behind them, and it bursts spectacularly into view in the concluding frames." - Geoff Brown, Time Out
Selected by Stuart Klawans, Laura Mulvey, Steven Markovitz, Manthia Diawara, Claire Monk.
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The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On

The Emperor's Naked Army Marches On

Yuki Yukite shingun (original title)
1987 / Japan / 123m / Col / History, Documentary
Kenzo Okuzaki, Riichi Aikawa, Masaichi Hamaguchi, Toshio Hara, Shichiro Kojima, Masao Koshimizu, Taro Maruyama, Toshiyo Nomura, Shizumi Okuzaki, Eizaburo Oshima
"A documentary portrait of Kenzo Okuzaki, a 62-year-old WWII veteran who acquired a prison record (for killing a man and for firing pachinko balls at the Emperor) in the course of his fanatical campaign to lay the blame for Japan's conduct of the war on the Emperor… Kazuo Hara's fly-on-the-wall documentary fascinates both for its bizarre protagonist, and for its brutally frank portrait of a society constrained by notions of shame rather than guilt. Jigsaw-like in construction, alleviated by mad wit, the film is unlike any other: rough, raw and sometimes surprisingly moving, it's absolutely compelling." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Lizzie Francke, Ally Derks, Dennis Doros, Michael Moore, Sean Jacobs.
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In Vanda's Room

In Vanda's Room

No Quarto da Vanda (original title)
2000 / Portugal-Germany-Switzerland-Italy / 170m / Col / Drama
Lena Duarte, Vanda Duarte, Zita Duarte, Pedro Lanban, Antonio Moreno, Paulo Nunes, Fernando Paixao
"For the extraordinarily beautiful second film in his Fontainhas trilogy, Pedro Costa jettisoned his earlier films’ larger crews to burrow even deeper into the Lisbon ghetto and the lives of its desperate inhabitants. With the intimate feel of a documentary and the texture of a Vermeer painting, In Vanda’s Room takes an unflinching, fragmentary look at a handful of self-destructive, marginalized people, but is centered around the heroin-addicted Vanda Duarte… This was Costa’s first use of digital video, and the evocative images he created remain some of the medium’s most astonishing." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Michelangelo Frammartino, Eulàlia Iglesias Huix, Javier Packer-Comyn, Rebecca Shatwell, Un-Seong Yoo.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
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Splendor in the Grass

Splendor in the Grass

1961 / USA / 124m / Col / Coming-of-Age, Romantic Drama
Natalie Wood, Warren Beatty, Pat Hingle, Audrey Christie, Barbara Loden, Sandy Dennis, Gary Lockwood, Zohra Lampert, Phyllis Diller, Fred Stewart
"Splendor in the Grass was the first work ever written directly for the screen by famed playwright William Inge, whose plays include Bus Stop, Come Back, Little Sheba and the Pulitzer Prize-winning PicnicSplendor in the Grass is a beautiful and tragic love story that has genuine resonance with its themes of passion, love, heartbreak, hypocrisy and madness. Director Elia Kazan called the last reel of Splendor his personal favorite last reel of all of his films." - Andrea Passafiume, TCM
Selected by Stéphane Delorme, Laura Kern, Luke Gibbons, Sheila Schvarzman, Alysson Oliveira.
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Twenty Years Later

Twenty Years Later

Cabra Marcado Para Morrer (original title)
1985 / Brazil / 119m / Col-BW / Documentary
Eduardo Coutinho, Tite de Lemos, Ferreira Gullar
"Twenty Years Later is a film about a film. Sort of. It begins with the story of João Pedro Teixeira, a political activist in a small tropical town murdered by police in 1962… A film crew came to his town and began dramatizing his life, casting his wife Elizabeth and their children as themselves. But the police stopped the shooting, and the film wasn't finished… Twenty Years Later is a marvelously human affront to dictatorship, showing a person's spirit can't be censored. It's also a high point in the great Coutinho's career. His films focus on people bursting with talk, often performers of one kind or another, but so full of hopes and aspirations that the naked self keeps bleeding through." - Aaron Cutler, The House Next Door
Selected by José Carlos Avellar, Kleber Mendonça Filho, Vladimir Carvalho, Andrés Di Tella, Tetê Moraes.
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Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Ferris Bueller's Day Off

1986 / USA / 103m / Col / Comedy, Teen Movie
Matthew Broderick, Alan Ruck, Mia Sara, Jeffrey Jones, Jennifer Grey, Cindy Pickett, Lyman Ward, Edie McClurg, Charlie Sheen, Ben Stein
"In The Breakfast Club and Pretty in Pink, Hughes portrayed adolescent angst in a fairly realistic light. But from the moment Ferris turns to the camera to address the audience, we know that realism is out. Ferris and his adventures represent a teen's dream of glory: to have, at one's fingertips, the technical skills to sabotage the adult world's machinery of oppression and, at the tip of one's tongue, the perfect squelch for grownups' moralistic blather. Here is a dream as old as adolescence, and it is fun to be reminded of its ageless potency, especially in a movie as good-hearted as this one." - Richard Schickel, TIME Magazine
Selected by Jason Reitman, Henry K. Miller, Marcelo Panozzo, Danny Cannon, Yale Gontijo.
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My Own Private Idaho

My Own Private Idaho

1991 / USA / 102m / Col / Drama, Buddy Film
River Phoenix, Keanu Reeves, James Russo, William Richert, Rodney Harvey, Chiara Caselli, Udo Kier, Grace Zabriskie, Tom Troupe, Michael Parker
"River Phoenix and Keanu Reeves star in Gus Van Sant’s haunting tale of two young street hustlers: Mike Waters, a sensitive narcoleptic who dreams of the mother who abandoned him, and Scott Favor, the wayward son of the mayor of Portland and object of Mike’s desire. Navigating a volatile world of junkies, thieves, and johns, Mike takes Scott on a quest from the grungy streets to the open highways of the Pacific Northwest, in search of an elusive place called home. Visually dazzling and groundbreaking, My Own Private Idaho is a deeply moving look at unrequited love and life at society’s margins." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Amy Berg, Cate Shortland, Gunnar Almer, Sophie Mayer, Xavier Dolan.
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Robocop

Robocop

1987 / USA / 103m / Col / Action, Science Fiction
Peter Weller, Nancy Allen, Dan O'Herlihy, Ronny Cox, Kurtwood Smith, Miguel Ferrer, Robert Doqui, Ray Wise, Felton Perry, Mario Machado
"Called by Ken Russell “the greatest science-fiction film since Metropolis,” controversial director Paul Verhoeven’s RoboCop is a special effects-laden cult phenomenon. The film features a resurrected and roboticized hero (Peter Weller) in a new, supercharged cyborg body, struggling to reclaim his memory and avenge his own death. Written by Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner, this film is a grown-up superhero fantasy come to vivid, bloody life." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Zack Snyder, Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, Jemaine Clement, Andrew Droz Palermo, James Tucker.
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Young Mr. Lincoln

Young Mr. Lincoln

1939 / USA / 100m / BW / Historical Film, Biography
Henry Fonda, Alice Brady, Marjorie Weaver, Arleen Whelan, Richard Cromwell, Ward Bond, Donald Meek, Eddie Quillan, Milburn Stone, Francis Ford
"Few historical figures are as revered as Abraham Lincoln, and few director-star pairings embody classic American cinema as perfectly as that of John Ford and Henry Fonda. In Young Mr. Lincoln, their first collaboration, Fonda gives one of the finest performances of his career, as the young president-to-be, struggling with an incendiary murder case as a novice lawyer. Compassionate and assured, this is an indelible piece of Americana." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Hong Sang-soo, Luís Oliveira, José Manuel Costa, Jesús Piquero, Un-Seong Yoo.
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570
Bambi

Bambi

1942 / USA / 69m / Col / Children's Fantasy, Animated Musical
Bobby Stewart, Peter Behn, Stan Alexander, Cammie King, Donnie Dunagan, Hardie Albright, Helen Freeman, Morgan Wallace, Wilson Benge, Hans Schumm
"From Disney's richest period, interleaving splendid animation with vulgar Americana. Babycham images occupy only a fraction of the running time in this tale of the adventures of a fawn; the rest is a strikingly impressionistic version of life in the forest and the meadow. Silhouette, panorama, and the cod use of classical music recall the best moments of Fantasia, while the animals are all given irresistible human traits: Bambi, Flower the skunk, and Thumper the rabbit ('Watchya doin' hibernatin'?') are like members of one of Mickey Rooney's gangs." - Andrew Nickolds, Time Out
Selected by Andrew Osmond, Manuel Mozos, Michael Dudok de Wit, Diego Luna, Sally Hibbin.
567 Up Arrow
583
The Manchurian Candidate

The Manchurian Candidate

1962 / USA / 126m / BW / Political Thriller, Paranoid Thriller
Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey, Janet Leigh, Angela Lansbury, Henry Silva, James Gregory, Leslie Parrish, John McGiver, Khigh Dhiegh, James Edwards
"Seen today, The Manchurian Candidate feels astonishingly contemporary; its astringent political satire still bites, and its story has uncanny contemporary echoes… The Manchurian Candidate is inventive and frisky, takes enormous chances with the audience, and plays not like a "classic" but as a work as alive and smart as when it was first released. "It may be," Pauline Kael wrote at the time, "the most sophisticated satire ever made in Hollywood." Yes, because it satirizes no particular target -- left, right, foreign, domestic -- but the very notion that politics can be taken at face value." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Mike Newell, Martin Campbell, Dávid Klág, Stan Russo, Frank Arnold.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
566 Up Arrow
597
Fellini's Roma

Fellini's Roma

Roma (original title)
1972 / Italy / 128m / Col / Satire, Ensemble Film
Peter Gonzales, Fiona Florence, Marne Maitland, Britta Barnes, Pia De Doses, Renato Giovannoli, Elisa Mainardi, Anna Magnani, Federico Fellini, Gore Vidal
"An imaginative, highly personal travelogue and essay film by Federico Fellini, one of his best works of this period. It features the filmmaker roaming around the Eternal City with his crew, musing about the recent and distant historical past, running into old chums and acquaintances (such as Anna Magnani and Gore Vidal), and occasionally indulging some flamboyant conceits for their own sake (e.g., the memorable ecclesiastical fashion show). As usual with Fellini, especially from the 70s on, spectacle tends to be everything." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Dominique Martinez, Edgar Pêra, Paulino Viota, Sidney Lumet, Saul Metzstein.
565
567
Being There

Being There

1979 / USA / 130m / Col / Comedy, Satire
Peter Sellers, Shirley MacLaine, Melvyn Douglas, Jack Warden, Richard Dysart, Richard Basehart, Ruth Attaway, David Clennon, Fran Brill, Denise DuBarry
"Most movies don't benefit from an inability to make up their minds, but Being There glides on its own contradictions. Closing out a decade of great, too-often-overlooked work, Hal Ashby directed this 1979 feature with a straight face that could hide a wicked grin, a beatific glow, or both. It ends with what looks like a miracle, but Ashby's ability to make the peculiar story as moving as it is opaque is kind of miraculous in itself." - Keith Phipps, A.V. Club
Selected by M. Night Shyamalan, Judd Apatow, Gary Tarn, Matthew Vaughn, Dominic Brunt.
564
562
The Wedding March

The Wedding March

1928 / USA / 113m / BW / Drama, Melodrama
Erich von Stroheim, Fay Wray, Matthew Betz, ZaSu Pitts, George Fawcett, Maude George, George Nichols, Dale Fuller, Hughie Mack, Cesare Gravina
"Like Foolish Wives, Greed and Queen Kelly, The Wedding March survives as a mutilated masterpiece, even this first part having been cut from 14 reels to ll. Charting the ill-starred romance between a Viennese prince and a lowly commoner, the film would perhaps appear to be its cynical creator's most romantic work, were it not for the marvellously detailed portrait of the corruption of society in general, rich and poor. Nevertheless, it is the love scenes, played beneath shimmering apple blossoms in lyrical soft focus, that stick in the memory, ironically turning what is now the film's ending - the frustration of that love - into one of the director's most bitterly pessimistic scenes." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Jean Narboni, Bernard Eisenschitz, Peter von Bagh, Stefan Grissemann, Richard Koszarski.
563
548
The Marriage of Maria Braun

The Marriage of Maria Braun

Die Ehe der Maria Braun (original title)
1978 / West Germany / 120m / Col / War Drama, Melodrama
Hanna Schygulla, Klaus Lowitsch, Ivan Desny, Gisela Uhlen, Elisabeth Trissenaar, Gottfried John, Hark Bohm, George Byrd, Claus Holm, Gunter Lamprecht
"Maria (Schygulla) marries Hermann Braun in the last days of World War II, only to have him disappear in the war. Alone, Maria uses her beauty and ambition to prosper in Germany’s “economic miracle” of the 1950’s. Fassbinder’s biggest international box-office success and the first part of his “postwar trilogy,” The Marriage of Maria Braun is a heartbreaking study of a woman picking herself up from the ruins of her own life, as well as a pointed metaphorical attack on a society determined to forget its past." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Thomas Elsaesser, Brad Deane, Maria Ulfsak, Cassio Starling Carlos, Shi Chuan.
562
560
Passion

Passion

1982 / France-Switzerland / 87m / Col / Psychological Drama, Showbiz Drama
Isabelle Huppert, Hanna Schygulla, Jerzy Radziwilowicz, Michel Piccoli, Laszlo Szabo, Jean-Francois Stevenin, Sophie Loucachevski, Patrick Bonnel, Myriem Roussel, Magaly Campos
"Reunited with cameraman Raoul Coutard after 16 years, and with a trio of great actors (Huppert, Schygulla, Piccoli), Godard orchestrates his personal passions for classical music, romantic painting, and the business of film-making around his favourite theme of how life relates to love. In a film studio, a Polish director is recreating in tableaux vivants a series of celebrated paintings by Goya, Ingres, Delacroix, Rembrandt and El Greco, but the backers complain that there's no story… Godard asks you to look everywhere at once, offering sounds and images that astonish the senses and tease the mind. It's a film you'll need - and want - to see several times." - Martyn Auty, Time Out
Selected by Ángel Quintana Morraja, Jan Holmberg, Jean-Claude Rousseau, Rod Stoneman, José María de Orbe.
561 Up Arrow
589
Cat People

Cat People

1942 / USA / 73m / BW / Horror, Supernatural Thriller
Simone Simon, Kent Smith, Tom Conway, Jane Randolph, Jack Holt, Elizabeth Russell, Alan Napier, Elizabeth Dunne, Henrietta Burnside, Alec Craig
"First in the wondrous series of B movies in which Val Lewton elaborated his principle of horrors imagined rather than seen, with a superbly judged performance from Simon as the young wife ambivalently haunted by sexual frigidity and by a fear that she is metamorphosing into a panther. With its chilling set pieces directed to perfection by Tourneur, it knocks Paul Schrader's remake for six, not least because of the care subtly taken to imbue its cat people (Simon, Russell) with feline mannerisms." - Tom Milne, Time Out
Selected by Sara Driver, Violeta Kovacsics, Jacques Lourcelles, Ivan Cardoso, Evelyne Caron-Lowins.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
560
492
Frankenstein

Frankenstein

1931 / USA / 70m / BW / Horror, Monster Film
Boris Karloff, Colin Clive, Mae Clarke, John Boles, Edward Van Sloan, Dwight Frye, Frederick Kerr, Lionel Belmore, Michael Mark, Marilyn Harris
"A stark, solid, impressively stylish film, overshadowed (a little unfairly) by the later explosion of Whale's wit in the delirious Bride of Frankenstein. Karloff gives one of the great performances of all time as the monster whose mutation from candour to chill savagery is mirrored only through his limpid eyes. The film's great imaginative coup is to show the monster 'growing up' in all too human terms… The film is unique in Whale's work in that the horror is played absolutely straight, and it has a weird fairytale beauty not matched until Cocteau made La Belle et la Bête." - Tom Milne, Time Out
Selected by Guillermo Del Toro, Federico Fellini, Nelson Pereira Dos Santos, Jean-Pierre Bouyxou, Jose Sacristan.
559 Up Arrow
602
12 Angry Men

12 Angry Men

Twelve Angry Men (alternative spelling)
1957 / USA / 95m / BW / Drama, Courtroom Drama
Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb, Ed Begley, E.G. Marshall, Jack Warden, Jack Klugman, Martin Balsam, John Fiedler, George Voskovec, Robert Webber
"12 Angry Men, by Sidney Lumet, may be the most radical courtroom drama in cinema history. A behind-closed-doors look at the American legal system that is as riveting as it is spare, this iconic adaptation of Reginald Rose’s teleplay stars Henry Fonda as the dissenting member on a jury of white men ready to pass judgment on a Puerto Rican teenager charged with murdering his father. The result is a saga of epic proportions that plays out over a tense afternoon in one sweltering room. Lumet’s electrifying snapshot of 1950s America on the verge of change is one of the great feature film debuts." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Tata Amaral, David Leland, Richard Sowada, Akin Omotoso, Antonia Bird.
558
523
Love Me Tonight

Love Me Tonight

1932 / USA / 96m / BW / Comedy, Musical Romance
Maurice Chevalier, Jeanette MacDonald, Charlie Ruggles, Charles Butterworth, Myrna Loy, C. Aubrey Smith, Elizabeth Patterson, Robert Greig, Ethel Griffies, Blanche Frederici
"A superb musical, outstripping the possible influences of René Clair and Lubitsch, to whose work this has been compared…The film is a stylish masterwork of technical innovations, and a delirious result of Mamoulian's desire to incorporate movement, dancing, acting, music, singing, décor and lighting into a cogent cinematic whole. The songs develop the action and characters, the dialogue is witty and rhythmic, and the entire film, with its fine score by Rodgers and Hart, is a charming, tongue-in-cheek fantasy that never descends into syrupy whimsy." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Laura Mulvey, Catherine A. Surowiec, David Meeker, Lars-Olav Beier, Peter Todd.
557
537
The Testament of Dr. Mabuse

The Testament of Dr. Mabuse

Das Testament des Dr. Mabuse (original title)
1933 / Germany / 120m / BW / Master Criminal Film, Police Detective Film
Rudolf Klein-Rogge, Otto Wernicke, Oscar Beregi Sr., Paul Bernd, Henry Bless, Gustav Diessl, Paul Henckels, Oskar Hocker, Georg John, Karl Meixner
"A sequel to his enormously successful silent film Dr. Mabuse: The Gambler, Fritz Lang’s The Testament of Dr. Mabuse reunites the director with the character that had effectively launched his career. Lang put slogans and ideas expounded by the Nazis into the mouth of a madman, warning his audience of an imminent menace, which was soon to become a reality. Nazi Minister of Information Joseph Goebbels saw the film as an instruction manual for terrorist action against the government and banned it for “endangering public order and security.” A landmark of mystery and suspense for countless espionage and noir thrillers to come." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Inácio Araujo, Un-Seong Yoo, Thierry Méranger, Luís Oliveira, B. Kite.
556
524
Wagon Master

Wagon Master

Wagonmaster (alternative spelling)
1950 / USA / 86m / BW / Western, Traditional Western
Ben Johnson, Joanne Dru, Harry Carey Jr., Ward Bond, Charles Kemper, Alan Mowbray, Jane Darwell, Russell Simpson, James Arness, Ruth Clifford
"The film that John Ford most often cited as his personal favorite among his westerns, Wagon Master stars Ben Johnson and Harry Carey Jr. as two drifters assigned to lead a Mormon train to the Utah frontier. Ford treats one of his central themes—the birth of a community—through a sweeping visual metaphor of movement. Seldom has the western landscape seemed such a tangible emblem of hope and freedom. A masterpiece beyond question—but a masterpiece that never degenerates into pomposity or self-consciousness. It's American filmmaking at its finest and most eloquent." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Joseph McBride, Gilberto Perez, Whit Stillman, Santos Zunzunegui, Michael Baute.
555
530
Punch-Drunk Love

Punch-Drunk Love

2002 / USA / 95m / Col / Comedy Drama, Romantic Comedy
Adam Sandler, Emily Watson, Luis Guzman, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Lisa Spector, Julie Hermelin, Karen Hermelin, Hazel Mailloux, Nicole Gelbard
"What do you call Punch-Drunk Love? It's not a musical, because no one sings or dances. But it has the surreal delirium of the great movie musicals. The alternately percussive and swooning music by the brilliant Jon Brion underlines each of its moods in turn—anger, longing, and ecstasy. At its heart the story is boy-meets-girl simple, but the movie is so full of lurches and discordances and flabbergasting non sequiturs that at times it's like an avant-garde dance-theater piece with injections of Saturday Night Live. I imagine that many will find it arch, and, on a narrative level, as bumptiously withholding as its protagonist. I found it exquisite." - David Edelstein, Slate
Selected by Miranda July, Constantin Popescu, Joko Anwar, Neil Young, Taika Waititi.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
554
551
Some Came Running

Some Came Running

1958 / USA / 136m / Col / Drama, Americana
Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Shirley MacLaine, Martha Hyer, Arthur Kennedy, Nancy Gates, Leora Dana, Betty Lou Keim, Larry Gates, Steven Peck
"Vincente Minnelli turns the James Jones novel into one of his finest and most garish melodramas, with Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra, and Shirley MacLaine struggling to stay alive in the hopelessly small town of Madison, Indiana. Minnelli has said that he based his visual style on the inside of a jukebox, and the film is a sort of neon epiphany. The final sequence, set at a carnival, remains an object lesson in the expressive use of CinemaScope." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Chris Fujiwara, Ignatiy Vishnevetsky, Roberto Manassero, Richard Linklater, Carlo Chatrian.
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559
Forrest Gump

Forrest Gump

1994 / USA / 142m / Col / Comedy Drama, Americana
Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise, Sally Field, Mykelti Williamson, Rebecca Williams, Michael Humphreys, Harold Herthum, George Kelly, Bob Penny
"Forrest Gump is a movie heart-breaker of oddball wit and startling grace… Taking a cue from Zelig, director Robert Zemeckis places Forrest (Hanks) in a vivid historical context — he talks with JFK, LBJ and Nixon, among other luminaries. The effects dazzle, though never at the expense of the story… Zemeckis doesn't fall into the trap of using Forrest as an ad for arrested development. He knows the limits of a holy fool who can't understand the hypocrisy of postwar America that this picaresque epic so powerfully reveals. The peace-love pretensions of the '60s are skewered as neatly as the greed decades that follow." - Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
Selected by Frank Marshall, Jan Svěrák, Jurgis Krasons, Xu Yuan, Hung Hung.
552
538
Ninotchka

Ninotchka

1939 / USA / 110m / BW / Romantic Comedy, Sophisticated Comedy
Greta Garbo, Melvyn Douglas, Ina Claire, Sig Ruman, Felix Bressart, Bela Lugosi, Alexander Granach, Gregory Gaye, Richard Carle, Edwin Maxwell
"Directed by Ernst Lubitsch and co-scripted by Billy Wilder, this enduring delight stands at the crossroads of American screen comedy. Studded with instances of the 'Lubitsch Touch' and imbued with the screwball spirit, it contains significant traces of the acerbic satire that would become Wilder's trademark in the less innocent postwar world… Lubitsch managed to relax Garbo to the extent that she was not only very funny, but also more feminine than in any role bar Camille and it's the fact that she comes across as a woman and not an icon that makes this performance so memorable… Iridescent and teaming with vitality, Garbo glows in her penultimate film " - David Parkinson, Empire
Selected by Fernando Trueba, Pierpaolo Loffreda, Marc Cerisuelo, Jean Dutourd, Simon Relph.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
551
542
Funny Games

Funny Games

1997 / Austria / 108m / Col / Crime Thriller, Psychological Thriller
Susanne Lothar, Ulrich Muhe, Frank Giering, Arno Frisch, Stefan Clapczynski, Doris Kunstmann, Christoph Bantzer, Wolfgang Gluck, Susanne Meneghel, Monika Zallinger
"Funny Games, a blood-curdling portrait of a family imprisoned in its idyllic summer home by a pair of sadistic killers, puts that question to the test. This beautifully acted and paced German variant of Cape Fear is tricked out with a number of Brechtian devices to catch audiences in a voyeuristic trance. Twice in a film that is predominantly hyper-realistic, one of the killers turns to the camera with a conspiratorial leer and asks the wordless question: What are you looking at and why?" - Stephen Holden, The New York Times
Selected by Jaime Chávarri, David Michôd, Git Scheynius, Mania Akbari, Oliver Schmitz.
550
532
The Seasons

The Seasons

Vremena goda (original title); The Four Seasons (alternative title)
1975 / USSR / 29m / BW / Documentary
"Vremena goda, Peleshian's first to eschew archival footage in favor of footage shot by his cinematographer Mikhail Vartanov, opens with a shepherd in a raging river, struggling to keep hold of his sheep; the rest of the film continues its downward plunge with more shepherds sliding down cliff faces with more sheep, farmers dragging huge haystacks down alarming inclines, and so on. The sense of hurtling motion, of life unstoppable, of energy and will pulling and shoving forward and down is overwhelming. Peleshian scores the whole thing to Vivaldi's Four Seasons, of course (with additional use of Armenian folk music); I can't imagine anything else will do." - Noel Vera, Critic After Dark
Selected by Edwin Mak, Elena Oroz, Michael Baute, Rhidian Davis, Roger Koza.
549
520
Yeelen

Yeelen

Brightness (English title)
1987 / Mali-Burkina Faso-France-West Germany-Japan / 105m / Col / Coming-of-Age, Adventure Drama
Issiaka Kane, Aoua Sangare, Niamanto Sanogo, Balla Moussa Keita, Soumba Traore, Ismaila Sarr, Youssef Tenin Cisse, Koke Sangare, Youssouf Coulibaly, Manzon Coumare
"Souleymane Cisse's extraordinarily beautiful and mesmerizing fantasy is set in the ancient Bambara culture of Mali long before it was invaded by Morocco in the 16th century… Apart from creating a dense and exciting universe that should make George Lucas green with envy, Cisse has shot breathtaking images and accompanies his story with a spare, hypnotic, percussive score. Sublimely mixing the matter-of-fact with the uncanny, this wondrous work provides an ideal introduction to a filmmaker who is, next to Ousmane Sembene, probably Africa's greatest director." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Peter Hames, Víctor Fowler Calzada, Manthia Diawara, Lizelle Bisschoff, Jean-Pierre Garcia.
548
534
The African Queen

The African Queen

1951 / USA / 105m / Col / Romance, Adventure
Katharine Hepburn, Humphrey Bogart, Robert Morley, Peter Bull, Theodore Bikel, Walter Gotell, Gerald Onn, Peter Swanwick, Richard Marner, Errol John
"Star vehicles have been a part of the Hollywood assembly line practically since its inception, but few have utilized (and literalized) the concept to such beloved effect as The African Queen. Really, what is the idea behind Huston's adventure-romance other than putting Bogart and Hepburn on a riverboat in Africa and see what happens? ...Its modesty of ambition makes The African Queen among the least complex classics of Hollywood's waning "golden age" (for a movie with a World War I setting and a colonialist context, it offers little interpretive earth to excavate), but leaves plenty of time for Huston and company to lovingly appraise the personae of two Tinseltown darlings." - Matthew Connolly, Slant Magazine
Selected by Billy Bond, Nicholas Meyer, Ronald Neame, Iciar Bollain, You Zhengwei.
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554
The Tin Drum

The Tin Drum

Die Blechtrommel (original title)
1979 / West Germany-France-Poland-Yugoslavia / 142m / Col / Political Drama, Childhood Drama
David Bennent, Mario Adorf, Angela Winkler, Katharina Thalbach, Daniel Olbrychski, Tina Engel, Berta Drews, Andrea Ferreol, Charles Aznavour, Heinz Bennent
"Oskar is born in Germany in 1924 with an advanced intellect. Repulsed by the hypocrisy of adults and the irresponsibility of society, he refuses to grow older after his third birthday. While the chaotic world around him careers toward the madness and folly of World War II, Oskar pounds incessantly on his beloved tin drum and perfects his uncannily piercing shrieks. The Tin Drum, which earned the Palme d’Or at Cannes and the Academy Award for best foreign-language film, is Volker Schlöndorff’s visionary adaptation of Nobel laureate Günter Grass’s acclaimed novel, characterized by surreal imagery, arresting eroticism, and clear-eyed satire." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Balazs Vizer, Suzana Amaral, Phan Dang-Di, Tanvir Mokammel, Pan Tianqiang.
546 Up Arrow
581
Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Terminator 2: Judgment Day

1991 / USA / 136m / Col / Science Fiction, Sci-Fi Action
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Edward Furlong, Robert Patrick, Earl Boen, Joe Morton, S. Epatha Merkerson, Xander Berkeley, Jenette Goldstein, Castulo Guerra
"James Cameron's Terminator 2: Judgment Day is a lustrous machine, all gleaming steel and burnished gunmetal, with state-of-the-art nuts and bolts. You relate to it the way you might relate to any overpowering machine, a little dispassionately but with a respect bordering on awe. It's a tank of a movie, big, powerful and hard to resist. But it's a tank with lightning treads and jaguar agility. The stunning special effects show something that's rare these days -- technical stunts that evoke a true sense of wonder; it's real jaw-to-the-floor stuff… No one in the movies today can match Cameron's talent for this kind of hyperbolic, big-screen action." - Hal Hinson, The Washington Post
Selected by Tobias Kniebe, Riz Ahmed, Chiara Santilli, Thomas Hesterberg, Mark Glaser.
545 Up Arrow
569
Rebel Without a Cause

Rebel Without a Cause

1955 / USA / 111m / Col / Teen Movie, Family Drama
James Dean, Natalie Wood, Sal Mineo, Jim Backus, Ann Doran, Corey Allen, Edward Platt, Dennis Hopper, Nick Adams, William Hopper
"Profoundly romantic and lacerating in its despair, Nicholas Ray's Rebel Without a Cause, a self-contained portrait of three isolated teenagers, is James Dean's best film and best performance (it ranks high in Ray's work as well)… Ray emphasizes the reds and blues in his widescreen frame for an unforgettably neurotic effect, and he showcases savant-like Dean as gently as Jim Stark takes care of Plato (Mineo). Ray seems to understand the self-dramatizations and exaggerated melancholy of adolescence, but he portrays these qualities with deep affection, respect and insight." - Dan Callahan, Slant Magazine
Selected by Roel Van Bambost, Matt Zoller Seitz, Brandon Judell, Constantine Giannaris, Pedro Mexia.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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572
Harlan County, U.S.A.

Harlan County, U.S.A.

1976 / USA / 103m / Col / Social Issues, Documentary
Basil Collins, Carl Horn, Lawrence Jones, Arnold Miller, Florence Reece, Lois Scott, William Simon, Richard Trumka, Billy G. Williams, Nimrod Workman
"Barbara Kopple’s Academy Award–winning Harlan County USA unflinchingly documents a grueling coal miners’ strike in a small Kentucky town. With unprecedented access, Kopple and her crew captured the miners’ sometimes violent struggles with strikebreakers, local police, and company thugs. Featuring a haunting soundtrack—with legendary country and bluegrass artists Hazel Dickens, Merle Travis, Sarah Gunning, and Florence Reece—the film is a heartbreaking record of the thirteen-month struggle between a community fighting to survive and a corporation dedicated to the bottom line." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Sophie Mayer, Bart Weiss, Tetê Moraes, Pietro Bianchi, R.J. Cutler.
543
477
Steamboat Bill Jr.

Steamboat Bill, Jr.

1928 / USA / 71m / BW / Adventure Comedy, Slapstick
Buster Keaton, Ernest Torrence, Marion Byron, Tom McGuire, Tom Lewis, Joe Keaton
"A marvellous comedy set in a lazy riverside town in the Deep South, with Buster as the foppish, city-educated boy who returns home to prove a grave disappointment to his father… Hilarious, of course, with both delicately observed jokes and energetically athletic stuntwork coursing through the movie. But what really delights is the detailed depiction of small town life, plus Keaton's comic awareness of his own persona; a sequence in which he and his father are buying a hat to replace his wimpy beret is a model of film comedy, played, remarkably, direct to camera." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Gregg Araki, Pere Portabella, Agnès Devictor, Peter Scarlet, Andrei Gorzo.
542
535
Boudu Saved from Drowning

Boudu Saved from Drowning

Boudu sauvé des eaux (original title)
1932 / France / 87m / BW / Comedy, Satire
Michel Simon, Charles Granval, Marcelle Hania, Severine Lerczynska, Jean Daste, Max Dalban, Jacques Becker, Jean Gehret, Jane Pierson, Georges St. Saens
"The movie dramatises the old adage about no good deed going unpunished, or perhaps it demonstrates how inscrutable fate may find a way to punish a wrongdoer through his one, atypical, altruistic act. The anarchic Boudu sweeps through this bourgeois home, upsetting and exposing all its complacent arrangements and concealments. There is a startling contrast between the drawing-room comedy of the interior scenes and Renoir's superbly dynamic documentary-style realism in the Paris streets outside: crowded, bustling, cosmopolitan. Almost 80 years on, it still has a superb energy." - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
Selected by Aki Kaurismäki, Hong Sang-soo, Dina Iordanova, Shinji Aoyama, Glenn Kenny.
541 Up Arrow
666
Die Hard

Die Hard

1988 / USA / 131m / Col / Action, Action Thriller
Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Alexander Godunov, Bonnie Bedelia, Reginald VelJohnson, Paul Gleason, William Atherton, James Shigeta, Devoreaux White, Hart Bochner
"It piles every known element of the action genre onto the flimsy story of a New York cop who rescues hostages from a Los Angeles office tower on Christmas Eve. Partly an interracial buddy movie, partly the sentimental tale of a ruptured marriage, the film is largely a special-effects carnival full of machine-gun fire, roaring helicopters and an exploding tank. It also has a villain fresh from the Royal Shakespeare Company, a thug from the Bolshoi Ballet and a hero who carries with him the smirks and wisecracks that helped make Moonlighting a television hit. The strange thing is, it works: Die Hard is exceedingly stupid, but escapist fun." - Caryn James, The New York Times
Selected by Aaron Katz, Magnus Martens, David Wain, Mark Adams, Erik Childress.
540
528
That Obscure Object of Desire

That Obscure Object of Desire

Cet obscur objet du désir (original title)
1977 / France-Spain / 103m / Col / Black Comedy, Satire
Fernando Rey, Carole Bouquet, Angela Molina, Julien Bertheau, Milena Vukotic, Andre Weber, Pierre Pieral, Maria Asquerino, Ellen Bahl, Valerie Blanco
"Luis Buñuel’s final film explodes with eroticism, bringing full circle the director’s lifelong preoccupation with the darker side of desire. Buñuel regular Fernando Rey plays Mathieu, an urbane widower, tortured by his lust for the elusive Conchita. With subversive flare, Buñuel uses two different actresses in the lead—Carole Bouquet, a sophisticated French beauty, and Angela Molina, a Spanish coquette. Drawn from Pierre Louÿs’s 1898 novel, La Femme et le Pantin, That Obscure Object of Desire is a dizzying game of sexual politics punctuated by a terror that harkens back to Buñuel’s brilliant surrealistic beginnings." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Mike Figgis, Kong Rithdee, Jamie Graham, Long Tin Shum, Cui Zi'en.
539
531
The Elephant Man

The Elephant Man

1980 / USA / 125m / BW / Biography, Medical Drama
John Hurt, Anthony Hopkins, Anne Bancroft, John Gielgud, Wendy Hiller, Freddie Jones, Michael Elphick, Hannah Gordon, Helen Ryan, John Standing
"More accessible than Lynch's enigmatically disturbing Eraserhead, The Elephant Man has much the same limpidly moving humanism as Truffaut's L'Enfant Sauvage in describing how the unfortunate John Merrick (Hurt), brutalised by a childhood in which he was hideously abused as an inhuman freak, was gradually coaxed into revealing a soul of such delicacy and refinement that he became a lion of Victorian society… A marvellous movie, shot in stunning black-and-white by Freddie Francis." - Tom Milne, Time Out
Selected by Isamu Hirabayashi, Maja Bogojevic, Goran Gocic, Neil Young, Sophie Fiennes.
538
508
La Terra trema

La Terra trema

La Terra trema: Episodio del mare (original title); The Earth Trembles (alternative title)
1948 / Italy / 160m / BW / Drama, Docudrama
Luchino Visconti, Antonio Pietrangeli, Maria Micale, Sebastiano Valastro, Antonino Micale, Nelluccia Giammona, Agnes Giammona, Salvatore Vicari, Giuseppe Vicari, Giuseppe Arcidiacono
"Visconti's second feature (five years after Ossessione in 1942) was an improvised drama produced by the Communist Party, filmed with and among Sicilian fishermen in the village of Aci-Trezza. An overwhelmingly stark chronicle of a family which strives but fails to break out of the poverty trap, La Terra Trema‚ stands as a masterpiece of neo-realism, a social conscience cinema of proletarian ways and means. Yet, despite this, it's no less 'operatic' than the director's later decadent melodramas: it surges with great tides of emotion. The film is distinguished by its vivid camerawork, at once poetic and 'documentary'." - Tom Charity, Time Out
Selected by José María de Orbe, Ulrich Gregor, Bryan Chang, Augusto M. Seabra, Mei Feng.
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Young Frankenstein

1974 / USA / 105m / BW / Parody/Spoof, Horror Comedy
Gene Wilder, Peter Boyle, Marty Feldman, Madeline Kahn, Cloris Leachman, Teri Garr, Kenneth Mars, Gene Hackman, Richard Haydn, Liam Dunn
"Few movies have offered up such satisfying parody and un-self-conscious wit as this Mel Brooks spoof, and all with the scatological flair that only Brooks can provide… Silly but always respectful, Brooks wants to honor the old Frankenstein films rather than skewer them, and as a result he serves up a film that is a cinematic achievement rather than a half-baked knock-off of better efforts. One of the funniest films of the 1970s, Young Frankenstein has lost none of its hilarity to the passing of time, serving as a reminder of how innovative parody can be." - Rebecca Flint Marx, All Movie
Selected by Rob Zombie, David O. Russell, Peter Segal, Trevor Groth, Omer M. Mozaffar.
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Talk to Her

Talk to Her

Hable con ella (original title)
2002 / Spain / 112m / Col / Melodrama, Romantic Drama
Javier Camara, Dario Grandinetti, Leonor Watling, Rosario Flores, Mariola Fuentes, Geraldine Chaplin, Pina Bausch, Malou Airaudo, Roberto Alvarez, Elena Anaya
"Like all great doomed affairs, Talk to Her is full of lovely, sweet suffering. And when it's over, the realization of how much the movie means to you really sinks in; you can't get it out of your heart. Pedro Almodóvar has created a tragic comedy about need, its liberating and shackling powers. Movies haven't been so rapturous about characters plummeting to an awful end at least since the last Almodóvar film, All About My Mother (1999). But he doesn't mine the comic strip soap opera mystique so extravagantly here; everything falls into place with an almost surreal delicacy." - Elvis Mitchell, The New York Times
Selected by Paul Julian Smith, Youngmee Hwang, Dave Calhoun, Rob White, Shyamaprasad.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
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506
Aparajito

Aparajito

1956 / India / 108m / BW / Drama, Coming-of-Age
Pinaki Sengupta, Smaran Ghosal, Karuna Banerji, Kanu Banerji, Ramani Sen Gupta, Charu Ghosh, Subodh Ganguly, Kali Charan Ray, Santi Gupta, K.S. Pandey
"Satyajit Ray creates a sublime and deeply affecting portrait of the struggle between tradition and progress in Aparajito, the second film of the monumental Apu Trilogy. Embodied through the maturation of Apu at the turn of the century, Ray creates an insightful social commentary on a profoundly changing culture, reflected through Apu's dilemma between traditional and modern education." - Acquarello, Strictly Film School
Selected by Moinak Biswas, Riri Riza, Mrinal Sen, Iqbal Masud, Ray Loriga.
534
490
Edvard Munch

Edvard Munch

1974 / Sweden-Norway / 210m / Col / Drama, Biopic
Geir Westby, Gro Fraas, Iselin von Hanno Bart, Eric Allum, Amund Berge, Kerstii Allum, Inger-Berit Oland, Susan Troldmyr, Camilla Falk, Peter Watkins
"This 1974 masterpiece—a biopic of the famed Norwegian Expressionist and sickbed child of the Industrial Age's alienation aura—may be Watkins' most accessible film, thanks to the high-art hook… Not only does it convincingly dare to approximate a documentary—narration, direct-camera address, etc.—as Watkins has done from the beginning of his career, but the film also places 19th-century class injustice, including the small matter of pervasive child labor, in the foreground so relentlessly that Munch himself (personified by Eric Allum) often disappears into the social weft." - Michael Atkinson, The Village Voice
Selected by Gareth Evans, Emily Wardill, Craig Keller, Javier Rebollo, Nick Wrigley.
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Teorema

Teorema

Theorem (English title)
1968 / Italy / 98m / Col / Drama, Religious Drama
Terence Stamp, Silvana Mangano, Massimo Girotti, Anne Wiazemsky, Laura Betti, Andres Jose Cruz, Ninetto Davoli, Luigi Barbini, Adele Cambria, Carlo de Mejo
"Apart from his final feature, Salo, this is probably Pier Paolo Pasolini's most controversial film, and to my mind one of his very best, though it has the sort of audacity and extremeness that send some American audiences into gales of derisive, self-protective laughter. The title is Italian for “theorem,” in this case a mythological figure: an attractive young man (Stamp) who visits the home of a Milanese industrialist and proceeds to seduce every member of the household—father, mother (Mangano), daughter (Wiazemsky), son, and maid (Betti)... It's an “impossible” work: tragic, lyrical, outrageous, indigestible, deeply felt, and wholly sincere." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Dāvis Sīmanis, Chadi Zeneddine, Inge de Leeuw, Nadav Lapid, Nanouk Leopold.
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519
Shadow of a Doubt

Shadow of a Doubt

1943 / USA / 108m / BW / Thriller, Psychological Thriller
Joseph Cotten, Teresa Wright, Macdonald Carey, Henry Travers, Patricia Collinge, Hume Cronyn, Wallace Ford, Edna May Wonacott, Irving Bacon, Charles Bates
"One of Hitchcock's finest films of the '40s, with Cotten as the infamous 'Merry Widow' murderer, who takes refuge with the small-town family of his sister (Collinge). Focusing on adoring niece Wright's dawning realisation that her kind, generous and handsome uncle is in fact a cold and cynical killer, the film is not only psychologically intriguing (both niece and uncle are called Charlie, and he arrives in town as if in answer to her prayers for excitement), but a sharp dissection of middle American life, in its own quiet way an ancestor of Blue Velvet... Funny, gripping, and expertly shot by Joe Valentine, it's a small but memorable gem." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Guillermo Del Toro, Diane Negra, Noël Burch, James Mangold, Les Bernstien.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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521
The French Connection

The French Connection

1971 / USA / 104m / Col / Crime, Action Thriller
Gene Hackman, Fernando Rey, Roy Scheider, Tony Lo Bianco, Marcel Bozzuffi, Frederic de Pasquale, Bill Hickman, Ann Rebbot, Harold Gary, Arlene Farber
"Four decades after its initial release, William Friedkin's Oscar-sweeper The French Connection remains an electrifying achievement, drawing its high-voltage forward momentum from the collision of semi-documentary procedural, with its based-on-real-events verisimilitude, and downbeat rogue-cop revisionism. Shooting in actual locations wherever possible, and availing themselves of the featherweight handheld cameras that enabled the development of the Direct Cinema movement, Friedkin and cinematographer Owen Roizman put the grit into "gritty authenticity." - Budd Wilkins, Slant Magazine
Selected by Alexander Zeldovich, Baltasar Komákur, David Leland, Tibor Bíró, Ringo Lam.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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Rocky

Rocky

1976 / USA / 119m / Col / Drama, Sports Drama
Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, Burgess Meredith, Thayer David, Joe Spinell, Jimmy Gambina, Bill Baldwin, Al Salvani
"Made for little, Rocky made a lot, winning the 1977 Academy Award for Best Picture while earning Sylvester Stallone an Oscar nomination for the screenplay and spawning five sequels of increasing scope and silliness. The original film has its charms, not least its embrace of boxing-movie clichés as if they were newly minted revelations… But the film’s true distinguishing mark, which might not even require a spoiler alert, is that when Rocky gets to the big fight, he loses it. The pug’s triumph is that he went the distance with the champ. By recognizing that endurance against all odds is its own heroism, Rocky became more than a contender. It made the movie a winner." - Richard Corliss, TIME
Selected by Jay Duplass, Ringo Lam, Daniel Sánchez Arévalo, Anurag Mehta, Yojira Takita.
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All That Jazz

All That Jazz

1979 / USA / 123m / Col / Musical, Showbiz Drama
Roy Scheider, Jessica Lange, Ann Reinking, Leland Palmer, Cliff Gorman, Ben Vereen, Erzsebet Foldi, Michael Tolan, Max Wright, William LeMassena
"Fosse might owe a lot to Fellini's plunge into self-obsession, but the pungent texture of showbiz grime and sweaty, thrusting body geometry are completely his own. In powerhouse numbers like "Take Off With Us" and the infamous "Bye-Bye Love", Fosse brings his own unique style of rhythmic, dance-like film editing that he initiated with Cabaret to its apotheosis. Never content to cut on a beat, instead he makes razor-sharp edits at the change of a dancer's direction, or as an extension of his combination moves. In essence, he turns the art of the edit into its own form of choreography. All That Jazz may be Fosse's finest cinematic achievement.." - Eric Henderson, Slant Magazine
Selected by Jan Svěrák, Juan José Campanella, Nae Caranfil, Kike Maíllo, Odie Henderson.
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496
The Big Heat

The Big Heat

1953 / USA / 90m / BW / Crime, Film Noir
Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, Jocelyn Brando, Alexander Scourby, Lee Marvin, Carolyn Jones, Jeanette Nolan, Peter Whitney, Willis Bouchey, Robert Burton
"Lang strips down William P. McGivern's novel to essentials, giving the story a narrative drive as efficient and powerful as a handgun. The dialogue is functional. Every shot is composed with economy and exactitude, no act gratuitous. The most celebrated scene, where Marvin's psychopathic gangster mutilates his moll Grahame's face with scalding coffee, is remarkable in that you never see him do it; the contract killings are also sex murders, but again unseen." - Wally Hammond, Time Out
Selected by Jean Narboni, Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne, José Luis Rebordinos, Barbet Schroeder, Lloyd Kaufman.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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527
The Killing

The Killing

1956 / USA / 85m / BW / Crime Thriller, Film Noir
Sterling Hayden, Coleen Gray, Vince Edwards, Jay C. Flippen, Marie Windsor, Elisha Cook Jr., Ted De Corsia, Timothy Carey, Joseph Sawyer, Jay Adler
"Stanley Kubrick’s account of an ambitious racetrack robbery is one of Hollywood’s tautest, twistiest noirs. Aided by a radically time-shuffling narrative, razor-sharp dialogue from pulp novelist Jim Thompson, and a phenomenal cast of character actors, including Sterling Hayden, Coleen Gray, Timothy Carey, Elisha Cook Jr., and Marie Windsor, The Killing is both a jaunty thriller and a cold-blooded punch to the gut. And with its precise tracking shots and gratifying sense of irony, it’s Kubrick to the core." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Mike Hodges, Roger Michell, Evgeny Gusyatinskiy, Brett Ratner, Iciar Bollain.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia

Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia

1974 / USA / 112m / Col / Black Comedy, Action Thriller
Warren Oates, Isela Vega, Gig Young, Kris Kristofferson, Emilio Fernandez, Robert Webber, Helmut Dantine, Jorge Russek, Chano Urueta, Don Levy
"For something so bleak, so purposely revolting and unsentimental, there are reservoirs of profound poetry in Alfredo Garcia, the only film that Peckinpah ever considered completely his own… Peckinpah was known for his hard drinking, stubbornness, and eccentricity; indeed, his life would eventually be decimated by the strain brought about by both his constant battles with the studios who funded (and frequently butchered) his work, and by his uncontrollable thirst for alcohol. Yet for one brief moment in 1974, Peckinpah enjoyed complete creative control, and the result was this magnificently depraved piece d'resistance." - Nick Schager, Slant Magazine
Selected by Park Chan-wook, Mark Duguid, Tsui Hark, Shunichi Nagasaki, Hugh Sullivan.
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The Round-Up

Szegénylegények (original title)
1965 / Hungary / 94m / BW / Political Drama, Period Film
Janos Gorbe, Zoltan Latinovits, Andres Kozak, Tibor Molnar, Istvan Avar, Gabor Agardi, Attila Nagy, Zoltan Basilides, Lajos Oze, Bela Barsi
"The leanest and meanest of Miklós Jancsó's visions of Hungarian history as formalist diagrams, and an entrapping mechanism to rival Fritz Lang's. The setting is the desolate countryside some time after Kossuth's 1848 rebellion against the oppressive Habsburg Austrian Empire… Implacably, horribly logical, the film's progression has the pared-down clarity of thesis work -- everything is ritualized (from the terrorizing of a Hungarian peasant to the lashing of a woman to the defrocking of an Austrian officer), yet everything is unadorned, ascetically terse." - Fernando F. Croce, Cinepassion
Selected by Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Béla Tarr, Dina Iordanova, Gusztáv Schubert, Jurica Pavicic.
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The Rise to Power of Louis XIV

The Rise to Power of Louis XIV

La Prise de pouvoir par Louis XIV (original title); The Taking of Power by Louis XIV (alternative title)
1966 / France / 100m / Col / Historical Film, Period Film
Jean-Marie Patte, Raymond Jourdan, Silvagni, Katharina Renn, Dominique Vincent, Pierre Barrat, Fernand Fabre, Francoise Ponty, Joelle Laugeois, Maurice Barrier
"Filmmaking legend Roberto Rossellini brings his passion for realism and unerring eye for the everyday to this portrait of the early years of the reign of France’s “Sun King,” and in the process reinvents the costume drama. The death of chief minister Cardinal Mazarin, the construction of the palace at Versailles, the extravagant meals of the royal court: all are recounted with the same meticulous quotidian detail that Rossellini brought to his contemporary portraits of postwar Italy. The Taking of Power by Louis XIV dares to place a larger-than-life figure at the level of mere mortal." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by James Quandt, Daniel V. Villamediana, David Forgacs, Iain Sinclair, Juan Villegas.
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Limelight

Limelight

1952 / USA / 145m / BW / Comedy Drama, Melodrama
Charles Chaplin, Claire Bloom, Sydney Chaplin, Andre Eglevsky, Melissa Hayden, Nigel Bruce, Buster Keaton, Norman Lloyd, Charles Chaplin Jr., Wheeler Dryden
"Chaplin's final film before his exile in Europe is far and away his most personal: he recreates the London of his boyhood (a world of abject poverty, alcoholism, seedy tenement dwellings, pubs and music halls), and contemplates with supreme narcissism the onset of old age and the decline of his comic instinct. It's also Chaplin's least funny film: tears outweigh titters by several kilos… It's over-long, shapeless, overblown, and... a masterpiece. Few cinema artists have delved into their own lives and emotions with such ruthlessness and with such moving results." - Geoff Brown, Time Out
Selected by José Luis Guerín, Báron György, Jos Oliver, Gilbert Adair, Shu Kei.
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478
Nouvelle Vague

Nouvelle Vague

New Wave (English title)
1990 / France-Switzerland / 88m / Col / Avant-garde-Experimental, Fantasy
Alain Delon, Domiziana Giordano, Jacques Dacqmine, Christophe Odent, Roland Amstutz, Cecile Reigher, Laurence Cote, Joseph Lisbona, Veronique Muller, Joe Sheridan
"Godard's opening salvo of the '90s sustains an elegiac note to unexpectedly potent effect. While the connecting narrative's a characteristically wilful and oblique affair, in which fabulously wealthy Giordano adopts drifter Delon as a house guest, their tentative emotional rapprochement set against the scheming of sundry business types, it's the larger view of a society obsessed by consumption and commodities at the expense of culture, moral integrity and human feelings that leaves the stronger impression… Godard conjures a fragmentary celluloid music expressing a deep sense of loss." - Trevor Johnston, Time Out
Selected by Armond White, Gavin Smith, Jean Narboni, Chung Sung-ill, Ekkehard Knörer.
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Boogie Nights

Boogie Nights

1997 / USA / 155m / Col / Comedy Drama, Ensemble Film
Mark Wahlberg, Burt Reynolds, Julianne Moore, Don Cheadle, Heather Graham, Alfred Molina, Philip Baker Hall, Nicole Ari Parker, Luis Guzman, William H. Macy
"Paul Thomas Anderson's Boogie Nights is an epic of the low road, a classic Hollywood story set in the shadows instead of the spotlights but containing the same ingredients: Fame, envy, greed, talent, sex, money. The movie follows a large, colorful and curiously touching cast of characters as they live through a crucial turning point in the adult film industry… Boogie Nights has the quality of many great films, in that it always seems alive." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Andrew Birkin, Joseph Cedar, Brie Larson, Stephen Merchant, Hannah Fidell.
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Ben-Hur

Ben-Hur

1959 / USA / 212m / Col / Religious Epic, Sword-and-Sandal
Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Haya Harareet, Stephen Boyd, Hugh Griffith, Martha Scott, Sam Jaffe, Finlay Currie, Cathy O'Donnell, Frank Thring
"Although a bit like a four-hour Sunday school lesson, Ben-Hur is not without its compensations, above all, of course, the chariot race (which was directed not by Wyler but by Andrew Marton, and it shows). The rest is made interesting by the most sexually ambivalent characters sporting togas this side of Satyricon. When not fondling phallic substitutes, Heston and Boyd gaze admiringly into each other's eyes, but when they fall out - well, hell hath no fury like a closet queen scorned." - Scott Meek, Time Out
Selected by Camille Paglia, Dieter Kosslick, Gaston Kaboré, Gabriel Carneiro, Roque Baños.
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Naked

Naked

1993 / UK / 126m / Col / Urban Drama, Social Problem Film
David Thewlis, Lesley Sharp, Katrin Cartlidge, Greg Cruttwell, Claire Skinner, Peter Wight, Elizabeth Berrington, Ewen Bremner, Deborah MacLaren, Carolina Giametto
"The brilliant and controversial Naked, from director Mike Leigh, stars David Thewlis as Johnny, a charming and eloquent but relentlessly vicious drifter. Rejecting anyone who might care for him, the volcanic Johnny hurls himself around London on a nocturnal odyssey, colliding with a succession of other desperate and dispossessed people and scorching everyone in his path. With a virtuoso script and raw performances from Thewlis and costars Katrin Cartlidge and Lesley Sharp, Leigh’s depiction of England’s underbelly is an amalgam of black comedy and doomsday prophecy that took the best director and best actor prizes at the 1993 Cannes Film Festival." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Pavel Bednarik, Leonard Quart, Marian Crisan, Sam Dunn, Wesley Morris.
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Scarface (1983)

Scarface

1983 / USA / 170m / Col / Crime Thriller, Gangster Film
Al Pacino, Steven Bauer, Michelle Pfeiffer, Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Robert Loggia, Miriam Colon, F. Murray Abraham, Paul Shenar, Harris Yulin, Angel Salazar
"Brian De Palma's Scarface moves the iconic rise and fall crime opera from the tommy-gun gangster wars of the prohibition era to the cocaine wars of Florida in the eighties. In the process, De Palma, screenwriter Oliver Stone and star Al Pacino carved out a film that redefined a generation of gangster cinema… It's a whole new spin on the immigrant story and the American Dream as an underworld nightmare and a fitting bookend to the two Godfather films… De Palma directs it as a blood-drenched thug opera, a mix of the graceful and the garish with Pacino's guttural thug-in-a-suit spitting out dialogue like broken glass in a harsh Cuban accent." - Sean Axmaker, MSN Movies
Selected by Antoine Fuqua, Dimitri Eipides, Matthew Vaughn, Niki Caro, Sean Baker.
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The Devils

The Devils

1971 / UK / 109m / Col / Historical Film, Religious Drama
Oliver Reed, Vanessa Redgrave, Dudley Sutton, Max Adrian, Gemma Jones, Murray Melvin, Georgina Hale, Michael Gothard, Graham Armitage, Kenneth Colley
"Considered by many to be Ken Russell's best film (and by others to be simply unwatchable), The Devils is an undeniably powerful and unforgettable cinematic experience. Rarely has so much anger and outrage been poured into a film (or directed at a film by its detractors) -- and rarely has a film offered so much to surely offend and shock so many... What is surprising is how effective the film is; while one may be repulsed by it or disagree with its sometimes simplistic political views, it's still a film that rushes over and overwhelms the viewer, taking him or her prisoner and refusing to let go." - Craig Butler, All Movie
Selected by Abel Ferrara, Mark Kermode, Tim Lucas, Billy Chainsaw, David Sorfa.
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447
Scorpio Rising

Scorpio Rising

1964 / USA / 29m / Col / Avant-garde-Experimental, Surrealist Film
Bruce Byron, Ernie Allo, Frank Carifi, Steve Crandell, Johnny Dodds, Johnny Sapienza, Bill Dorfman, John Palone, Barry Lubin
"Scorpio Rising is a pop-art collage of found artifacts which submerges itself in the chrome-and-leather, skull-and-swastika iconography of the motorcycle cult that provides its subject… Anger's manipulations of the culturally overloaded imagery of Nazism, sado-masochism, and the occult finally result in a film which refuses to conform to any dominant, edifying reading whatsoever—an almost unparalleled achievement which should earn Scorpio Rising an enduring place in the artistic annals of the 1960s, a decade remembered for the challenges it posed to ruling ideology. - Ed Lowry, Film Reference
Selected by Rebecca Shatwell, Ben Walters, Fernando F. Croce, Haden Guest, Jacob Perlin.
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Repulsion

Repulsion

1965 / UK / 105m / BW / Thriller, Psychological Thriller
Catherine Deneuve, Yvonne Furneaux, John Fraser, Ian Hendry, Patrick Wymark, Valerie Taylor, Helen Fraser, Renee Houston, James Villiers, Hugh Futcher
"Roman Polanski followed up his international breakthrough Knife in the Water with this controversial, chilling tale of psychosis. Catherine Deneuve is Carol, a fragile, frigid young beauty cracking up in her London flat when left alone by her vacationing sister. She is soon haunted by specters real and imagined, and her insanity grows to a violent, hysterical pitch. Thanks to its disturbing detail and Polanski’s adeptness at turning claustrophobic space into an emotional minefield, Repulsion is a surreal, mind-bending odyssey into personal horror, and it remains one of cinema’s most shocking psychological thrillers." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Bruce Robinson, Billy Chainsaw, Donald Clarke, Mar Diestro-Dopido, Hubert Cornfield.
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Faust

Faust

Faust - Eine deutsche Volkssage (original title)
1926 / Germany / 116m / BW / Fantasy, Tragedy
Emil Jannings, Gosta Ekman, Camilla Horn, Eric Barclay, Hans Brausewetter, William Dieterle, Werner Fuetterer, Yvette Guilbert, Lothar Muthel, Frida Richard
"The great F.W. Murnau directed only one real blockbuster in Germany, just before coming to America to make his masterpiece, Sunrise; extravagant in every sense, Faust is laden with references to Dutch, German, and Italian painting and was rivaled only by Fritz Lang's Metropolis in driving the UFA studio toward bankruptcy. Like Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey, this extraordinary piece of artistry and craftsmanship integrates its dazzling special effects so seamlessly that they're indistinguishable from the film's narrative, poetry, and, above all, metaphysics." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Pierre Rissient, Shinji Aoyama, Måns Månsson, Michael Koller, Noel Vera.
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Alice in the Cities

Alice in the Cities

Alice in den Städten (original title)
1974 / West Germany / 110m / BW / Drama, Road Movie
Rudiger Vogler, Yella Rottlander, Lisa Kreuzer, Edda Kochl, Ernest Boehm, Sam Presti, Lois Moran, Didi Petrikat, Hans Hirschmuller, Sibylle Baier
"This bittersweet gem from 1974 delivers an ambling tale of loss and estrangement which rings as true today as it would have more than 30 years ago… The film is full of love/hate relationships, an idea that is physically represented by the prickly bond between Philip (Vogler) and Alice (Rottlander), but who also symbolise Wenders’ own bewilderment (and wide-eyed fascination) with the architecture, advertising, music, photography and inescapable cultural-sprawl of the US." - David Jenkins, Time Out
Selected by Lodge Kerrigan, Andrés Di Tella, Isabel Stevens, Jaco Van Dormael, Nick Hasted.
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Senso

Senso

The Wanton Countess (USA title)
1954 / Italy / 115m / Col / Melodrama, Romantic Drama
Alida Valli, Farley Granger, Massimo Girotti, Heinz Moog, Rina Morelli, Marcella Mariani, Christian Marquand, Tonio Selwart, Sergio Fantoni, Cristoforo De Hartungen
"This lush, Technicolor tragic romance from Luchino Visconti stars Alida Valli as a nineteenth-century Italian countess who, during the Austrian occupation of her country, puts her marriage and political principles on the line by engaging in a torrid affair with a dashing Austrian lieutenant, played by Farley Granger. Gilded with ornate costumes and sets and a rich classical soundtrack, and featuring fearless performances, this operatic melodrama is an extraordinary evocation of reckless emotions and deranged lust, from one of the cinema’s great sensualists." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Nenad Polimac, Mario Vargas Llosa, Bernard Chardère, Freddy Buache, Roberto Nepoti.
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A Moment of Innocence

A Moment of Innocence

Nun va Goldoon (original title)
1996 / Iran-France / 78m / Col / Comedy Drama, Satire
Mirhadi Taiebi, Ali Bakshi, Ammar Tafti, Mariyam Mohammad-Amini, Fariba Faghiri, Lotfollah Ghaslaghi, Mohsen Makhmalbaf, Moharram Zainlazadeh, Ali Irani, Hana Makhmalbaf
"This 1996 film by Mohsen Makhmalbaf is one of his most seminal and accessible—a reconstruction of a pivotal incident during his teens that landed him in prison for several years during the shah's regime. A fundamentalist and activist at the time, Makhmalbaf stabbed a policeman; as a consequence he was shot and arrested. Two decades later, while auditioning people to appear in his film Salaam Cinema, he encountered the same policeman, now unemployed, and the two wound up collaborating on this film… This is a fascinating humanist experiment and investigation in its own right, full of warmth and humor as well as mystery." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Dina Iordanova, Mark Cousins, Richard Combs, Kim Ji-Seok, Rasha Salti.
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Hannah and Her Sisters

Hannah and Her Sisters

1986 / USA / 106m / Col / Comedy Drama, Ensemble Film
Woody Allen, Michael Caine, Mia Farrow, Carrie Fisher, Barbara Hershey, Lloyd Nolan, Maureen O'Sullivan, Daniel Stern, Max von Sydow, Dianne Wiest
"From 1986, when Woody Allen's strike rate was more consistent, this triple Oscar-winner is one of his best. Mia Farrow plays the title role, an acclaimed actress with a seemingly idyllic family life. But husband Michael Caine has the hots for youngest sister Barbara Hershey, while middle sister Dianne Wiest is a recovering drug addict pin-balling from one ill-advised career choice to another. Allen is Hannah’s ex-husband, as neurotic and nebbish as ever. Around these characters the film weaves a rich Chekhovian mix, full of wry insights into the fragility of human emotions." - Philip Kemp, Total Film
Selected by Briony Hanson, Aaron Katz, Alejandro Agresti, Guy Lodge, Köves Gábor.
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Strike

Strike

Stachka (original title)
1924 / USSR / 73m / BW / Political Drama, Historical Epic
Maksim Shtraukh, Grigori Aleksandrov, Mikhail Gomorov, Alexander Antonov, Yudif Glizer, I. Ivanov, Ivan Klyukvin, Anatoli Kuznetsov, M. Mamin, Vladimir Uralsky
"Eisenstein's first feature also remains his most watchable… The story itself is simple: workers clash violently with employers and police during a drawn-out factory strike provoked by the sacking and subsequent suicide of one of their number. But Eisenstein's methods are both complex and extraordinary: his decision to make the masses rather than any single individual his hero lends the film a truly epic sweep… The harshly beautiful imagery roots the movie effortlessly in down-to-earth reality, but its relentless energy and invention transform the whole thing into a raucous, rousing hymn to human dignity and courage." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Paul Bush, David Forgacs, David Hanan, Alexei Balabanov, Pietro Bianchi.
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All the President's Men

All the President's Men

1976 / USA / 138m / Col / Political Drama, Paranoid Thriller
Dustin Hoffman, Robert Redford, Jack Warden, Martin Balsam, Hal Holbrook, Jason Robards, Jane (1) Alexander, Meredith Baxter Birney, Ned Beatty, Stephen Collins
"Inevitably softened by hints of self-congratulation concerning the success of Woodward and Bernstein's uncovering of the Watergate affair, Pakula's film is nevertheless remarkably intelligent, working both as an effective thriller (even though we know the outcome of their investigations) and as a virtually abstract charting of the dark corridors of corruption and power. Pakula's visual set-ups are often extraordinary, contrasting the light of the Washington Post newsroom with the shadows in which hides star informant Deep Throat, and dramatically engulfing Hoffman and Redford in monumental buildings to stress the enormity of their task." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Bruce Robinson, George Clooney, Diane Negra, Morgan Neville, Danny Bilson.
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Halloween

Halloween

1978 / USA / 93m / Col / Horror, Slasher Film
Donald Pleasence, Jamie Lee Curtis, Nancy Loomis, P.J. Soles, Charles Cyphers, Kyle Richards, Brian Andrews, John Michael Graham, Nancy Stephens, Arthur Malet
"It's more clear than ever that John Carpenter's Halloween is a remarkable film that towers over the endless clones that followed it. In fact—and this doesn't really detract from Scream's cleverness—watching Halloween again makes it apparent just how saddled with poor self-parody so many of its slasher follow-ups were… Carpenter's story of childhood killer Michael Myers' return to the town in which he has become a symbol of all that is dark relies more on suspense and suggestion than cheap shocks and gore, which in itself makes it a better film than its successors… Ignore the Prom Nights and the Friday The Thirteenths; Halloween cuts deepest." - Keith Phipps, A.V. Club
Selected by John Singleton, Dane Cook, Kevin Williamson, Tom Tykwer, Jim Ridley.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
506
483
To Have and Have Not

To Have and Have Not

1944 / USA / 100m / BW / Drama, Romance
Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Walter Brennan, Dolores Moran, Hoagy Carmichael, Dan Seymour, Marcel Dalio, Walter Molnar, Sheldon Leonard, Walter Sande
"An unassuming masterpiece, nominally based on Hemingway's novel and set in Martinique during World War II, this is Hawks' toughest statement of the necessity of accepting responsibility for others or forfeiting one's self-respect - the sum total of morality for Hawks - and the perfect bridge from the free and open world of Only Angels Have Wings to the claustrophobic one of Rio Bravo… Bogie and Bacall fell in love while making the film, and their scenes reflect this, giving To Have and Have Not a degree of emotional presence that is unusual in the 'bite on the bullet' world of Hawks." - Phil Hardy, Time Out
Selected by Kim Newman, Todd McCarthy, Mark Jancovich, Péter Muszatics, Tobias Kniebe.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
505
488
Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid

Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid

1973 / USA / 122m / Col / Revisionist Western, Outlaw (Gunfighter) Film
James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson, Bob Dylan, Richard Jaeckel, Katy Jurado, Chill Wills, Slim Pickens, Jason Robards, R.G. Armstrong, Luke Askew
"Peckinpah brings the film a deep-dish sense of atmosphere and arid beauty, glorifying in the committed individualism of Billy the Kid while mourning how the passage of time made his attitude seem outdated. It's also worth noting that the beguiling mood Peckinpah weaves here is aided considerably by John Coquillion's lush photography and Bob Dylan's moody song score. The end result is a mythic, personalized Western that could have only been created by the one and only Sam Peckinpah. Thus, Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid is a must for his fans and anyone interested in a good revisionist take on the Old West." - Donald Guarisco, All Movie
Selected by Nick Roddick, Constantin Popescu, Ian Penman, Jean-Pierre Garcia, Santiago Mitre.
504
503
Great Expectations

Great Expectations

1946 / UK / 118m / BW / Drama, Period Film
John Mills, Valerie Hobson, Martita Hunt, Bernard Miles, Francis L. Sullivan, Finlay Currie, Jean Simmons, Anthony Wager, Alec Guinness, Freda Jackson
"The adaptation by Lean and his collaborators is a model of intelligent adaptation, rich with character and atmosphere yet focused firmly on the journey of Pip, from young orphan on the Kent marshes to young man in London society. Lean fills Great Expectations with a wealth of visual detail and vivid characters and personalities without allowing them to swamp his hero, and he directs with a warmth and humor often missed in such costume dramas and reverent literary adaptations. Though greatly pared down, this third screen version of Dickens' novel remains to this day the quintessential cinematic incarnation." - Sean Axmaker, TCM
Selected by Terence Davies, Matthew Sweet, Jason Solomons, Bryan Forbes, James Mangold.
503
495
Suspiria

Suspiria

1977 / Italy / 92m / Col / Horror, Gothic Film
Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci, Miguel Bose, Barbara Magnolfi, Susanna Javicoli, Rudolf Schundler, Udo Kier, Alida Valli, Joan Bennett
"As distinctive in its painterly colors as Val Lewton's horror films were in their expressive swaths of black and white, Suspiria serves up a gorehound's feast of explicit mayhem. But never has gratuitous bloodletting seemed so ornately beautiful… Argento's vibrant color scheme leaps off the screen like a '50s Technicolor musical, with sets and lighting design that fill the Cinemascope frame with bold reds, greens, yellows, and blues… Long admired in cult circles, Suspiria stands as one of the most visually striking horror films ever made, and the high watermark of a first-rate splatter stylist." - Scott Tobias, A.V. Club
Selected by Neil Young, Jasper Sharp, Virginie Sélavy, Dennis Dermody, Piermaria Bocchi.
502 Up Arrow
525
Shane

Shane

1953 / USA / 118m / Col / Western, Psychological Western
Alan Ladd, Jean Arthur, Van Heflin, Brandon de Wilde, Jack Palance, Ben Johnson, Edgar Buchanan, Elisha Cook Jr., Emile Meyer, John Dierkes
"The plot of Shane is a masterpiece of simplicity… Shane tries to encapsulate the cultural ethos of the Western. Rather than avoiding the clichés, platitudes and stereotypes of the genre, Shane pursues and embraces them. With the exception of a saloon girl and an Indian attack, all of the ingredients of the typical Western are present: the wide open spaces, the ranchers feuding with the farmers, the homesteading family trying to build a life, the rival gunman, the absence of law… Embodying as it does the look and feel of the Western, Shane becomes an essential rarity; it not only preserves but honors our belief in our heritage." - Stephen E. Bowles, Film Reference
Selected by José Mojica Marins, John Ewing, Patrick Russell, Tony Macklin, Paul Morrissey.
501
501
Rebecca

Rebecca

1940 / USA / 130m / BW / Mystery, Gothic Film
Laurence Olivier, Joan Fontaine, George Sanders, Judith Anderson, Nigel Bruce, Gladys Cooper, Reginald Denny, C. Aubrey Smith, Florence Bates, Melville Cooper
"Last night, I dreamt I went to Manderley again.” Rebecca’s haunting opening line conjures the entirety of Hitchcock’s romantic, suspenseful, elegant film. A young woman (Fontaine) believes her every dream has come true when her whirlwind romance with the dashing Maxim de Winter culminates in marriage. But she soon realizes that Rebecca, the late first Mrs. de Winter, haunts both the temperamental, brooding Maxim and the de Winter mansion, Manderley… The first collaboration between David O. Selznick and Hitchcock, Rebecca was adapted from Daphne du Maurier’s popular novel and won the 1940 Academy Award™ for Best Picture and Cinematography." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by M. Night Shyamalan, Genevieve Sellier, Hideo Nakata, Yvonne Tasker, Margarita Chapatte.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.