The 1,000 Greatest Films (O-R)

The banner image above is from Jean-Pierre Melville's The Red Circle.
O Lucky Man!

O Lucky Man!

1973 / UK / 173m / Col / Comedy, Satire
Malcolm McDowell, Ralph Richardson, Rachel Roberts, Arthur Lowe, Helen Mirren, Graham Crowden, Peter Jeffrey, Dandy Nichols, Mona Washbourne, Anthony Nicholls
"O Lucky Man! begins as an irreverent capitalist satire before springboarding into issues including class struggle, sexual mores, world politics, and meta-commentary on the medium itself… Though its particular brand of deadpan comedy is unmistakably British, O Lucky Man! has a plainspoken surrealism that owes much to Luis Buñuel; both knew that a sense of detachment was the best way to keep the outrageous goings-on in balance. Perhaps Anderson's most inspired touch was to commission Alan Price, late of The Animals, to perform original songs that tie the vignettes together and act as a sort of Greek chorus that comments on the action." - Scott Tobias, A.V. Club
Selected by Claire Monk, Richard Kuipers, Alex Cox, Richard Linklater, Chuck Rudolph.


Oasiseu (original title)

2002 / South Korea / 133m / Col / Psychological Drama, Romantic Drama
Kyung-gu Sol, So-ri Moon, Nae-sang Ahn, Seung-wan Ryoo, Kwi-Jung Chu, Jin-gu Kim, Byung-ho Son, Ga-hyun Yun, Myeong-shin Park, Kyung-geun Park
"Lee Chang-dong's audacious melodrama Oasis appears, at first blush, to be the worst in disease-of-the-week gooiness: the touching story of a romance between a brain-addled ex-con and a woman crippled by severe cerebral palsy. It's even littered with fantasy sequences in which the two magically transcend their physical and mental limitations and express their feelings in more socially acceptable ways. But, far from the teddy-bear sentimentality that usually accompanies films about the afflicted, Oasis fearlessly skirts the edge of good taste, with moments of sweetness and emotional generosity colliding with stark brutality and exploitation." - Scott Tobias, A.V. Club
Selected by Sean Baker, Jerry Schatzberg, Ik-June Yang, Alice Rohrwacher, German Kijel.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.


Oktyabr (original title)

1928 / USSR / 103m / BW / Historical Film, Docudrama
Vasili Nikandrov, Vladimir Popov, Boris Livanov, Layaschenko, Chibisov, Mikholyev, N. Podvoisky, Smelsky, Eduard Tisse
"Expanding on his editing experiments in Battleship Potemkin (1925), Sergei Eisenstein melded documentary realism with narrative metaphor to depict the pivotal events of the Russian Revolution in October… Eisenstein constructed October as an elaborate "intellectual montage," deriving meaning from the metaphorical or symbolic relationships between shots… While the film's whole is not as great as its parts, the abstract power and narrative innovation of its greatest sequences still render it a seminal work in the development of film form." - Lucia Bozzola, All Movie
Selected by Tata Amaral, Beat Glur, Gertrud Koch, Manuel Asín, Michael O'Pray.
Odd Man Out

Odd Man Out

1947 / UK / 115m / BW / Drama, Crime
James Mason, Robert Newton, Robert Beatty, Kathleen Ryan, William Hartnell, Cyril Cusack, F.J. McCormick, Fay Compton, Beryl Measor, Dan O'Herlihy
"A wounded Irish revolutionary (James Mason at his near best) on the run in Belfast encounters a cross section of human responses—self-interest, indifference, empathy, and charity—in this arty English thriller directed by Carol Reed and adapted by F.L. Green and R.C. Sherriff from Green's novel. This may be Reed's most pretentious film, but it also happens to be one of his very best, beautifully capturing the poetry of a city at night (with black-and-white cinematography by Robert Krasker that's within hailing distance of Gregg Toland and Stanley Cortez's work with Orson Welles)." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Agnieszka Holland, Bruce Beresford, Lewis Gilbert, Roman Polanski, Yasuo Furuhata.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.


Oldeuboi (original title)

2003 / South Korea / 120m / Col / Thriller, Psychological Drama
Min-Sik Choi, Ji-tae Yu, Hye-jeong Kang, Byeong-ok Kim, Dae-han Ji, Dal-su Oh, Seung-Shin Lee, Jin-seo Yun, Tae-kyung Oh, Yeon-suk Ahn
"If revenge is a dish best served cold, then Park Chan-wook's deliriously unhinged Oldboy is an unthawed Hungry Man TV dinner… Park marries the vibrant style of the Hong Kong action scene to the disturbing psychosexual currents running through many new films from his native country. The result is a powerfully visceral experience that justifies itself almost entirely on surface chops, with striking color composition and a complex sound design that elevates the story to an operatic scale." - Scott Tobias, A.V. Club
Selected by Cameron Crowe, Eli Roth, Lizelle Bisschoff, Simon Rumley, Youngmee Hwang.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
Los Olvidados

Los Olvidados

The Young and the Damned (English title)

1950 / Mexico / 88m / BW / Juvenile Delinquency Film, Urban Drama
Alfonso Mejia, Roberto Cobo, Estela Inda, Miguel Inclan, Alma Delia Fuentes, Jesus Navarro, Francisco Jambrina, Hector Portillo, Salvador Quiros, Victor Manuel Mendoza
"A great, great movie, as well as a personal favorite, Los Olvidados is the means by which exiled Luis Buñuel re-established his international reputation. This low-budget account of Mexico City street kids, inspired by actual cases as well as Buñuel's impressions of his new country, is a masterpiece of social surrealism and the founding work of third-world barrio horror. Los Olvidados is strong enough to make a hardened Communist cry or drive a (true) Christian to despair. The title is in part ironic: Once seen, this movie can never be forgotten." - J. Hoberman, The Village Voice
Selected by Nelson Pereira dos Santos, Abel Ferrara, Carlos Reygadas, Guillermo Del Toro, James Marsh.


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, Richard Kostelanetz, Mario Naito.
On the Town

On the Town

1949 / USA / 98m / Col / Musical, Comedy
Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Jules Munshin, Betty Garrett, Ann Miller, Vera-Ellen, Alice Pearce, Florence Bates, George Meader, Bern Hoffman
"A fine, freewheeling musical by Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly, based on the Betty Comden-Adolph Green book, which was in turn based on the Leonard Bernstein ballet Fancy Free. Kelly, Frank Sinatra, and Jules Munshin are three sailors out for a day in New York; Vera-Ellen, Ann Miller, and Betty Garrett are the girls they spend it with. With no structure or pacing to speak of, it's a loopy, anything-goes movie, graced with the freshness of a Hollywood nouvelle vague. Remarkably, it was Donen and Kelly's first directorial effort " - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Linda Ruth Williams, Bruce Ricker, Erik Syngle, Dilys Powell, Cesar Santos Fontenla.
On the Waterfront

On the Waterfront

1954 / USA / 108m / BW / Message Movie, Urban Drama
Marlon Brando, Eva Marie Saint, Karl Malden, Lee J. Cobb, Rod Steiger, Leif Erickson, Martin Balsam, Pat Henning, James Westerfield, Tony Galento
"Marlon Brando gives the performance of his career as the tough prizefighter-turned-longshoreman Terry Malloy in this masterpiece of urban poetry. A raggedly emotional tale of individual failure and social corruption, On the Waterfront follows Terry’s deepening moral crisis as he must decide whether to remain loyal to the mob-connected union boss Johnny Friendly (Cobb) and Johnny’s right-hand man, Terry’s brother, Charley (Steiger), as the authorities close in on them. Driven by the vivid, naturalistic direction of Elia Kazan and savory, streetwise dialogue by Budd Schulberg, On the Waterfront was an instant sensation, winning eight Oscars." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Chris Columbus, Robert De Niro, Richard Eyre, Roger Corman, Joseph Cedar.
Once Upon a Time in America

Once Upon a Time in America

1984 / Italy-USA / 229m / Col / Crime, Gangster Film
Robert De Niro, James Woods, Elizabeth McGovern, Treat Williams, Tuesday Weld, Burt Young, Joe Pesci, Danny Aiello, William Forsythe, James Hayden
"A hallucinatory, melancholic meditation on grief, ambition, and betrayal, Leone's film purports to be a gangster film but, in reality, is something more like a romantic evocation of a gangster film… Leone marries a European art-film sensibility to his flamboyant and slightly cartoonish trademark cinematic mannerisms. The result is a haunting, thematically complex movie that, instead of a straightforward genre film, works like an elegiac poem about the cost one pays for dreaming big and trusting blindly… It's an entrancing and stirring epic from one of the cinema's most expressionistic artists, and one of the most consistently fascinating films I've ever seen." - Nick Schager, Lessons of Darkness
Selected by Li Yang, Steve McQueen, Li Shaohong, Diego Lerer, Edvinas Puksta.
Once Upon a Time in the West

Once Upon a Time in the West

C'era una volta il West (original title)
Top 100 Film Ranking 64 (68) Orange Up-Arrow

1968 / Italy-USA / 165m / Col / Epic Western, Spaghetti Western
Henry Fonda, Claudia Cardinale, Jason Robards, Charles Bronson, Frank Wolff, Gabriele Ferzetti, Keenan Wynn, Paolo Stoppa, Lionel Stander, Jack Elam
"Sergio Leone, famous for his spaghetti westerns shot in Spain, dared to invade John Ford's own Monument Valley for this 1968 epic. He brought back a masterpiece, a film that expands his baroque, cartoonish style into genuine grandeur, weaving dozens of thematic variations and narrative arabesques around a classical western foundation myth. It's very much a foreigner's film, drawing its elements not from historical reality but from the mythic base made universal by the movies. Moments of intense realism flow into passages of operatic extravagance; lowbrow burlesque exists side by side with the expression of the most refined shades of feeling." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Rupert Wyatt, Joss Whedon, Christopher Frayling, Joe Dante, Jørgen Leth.
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

1975 / USA / 133m / Col / Comedy Drama, Psychological Drama
Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, William Redfield, Brad Dourif, Will Sampson, Sydney Lassick, Christopher Lloyd, Danny De Vito, Scatman Crothers, Michael Berryman
"A rare screen adaptation of a beloved novel that maintains the emotional and dramatic power of the original while establishing its own distinctive approach to the story, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is an underdog masterpiece. "It was a classic story: the story of an individual fighting the system," is how producer Michael Douglas explained his attraction to Ken Kesey's novel about a strong-willed rebel fighting a domineering head nurse in a mental hospital… One of the great stories of defiance in the face of unchecked power, and one of the most powerful character dramas of its time." - Sean Axmaker, TCM
Selected by Rupert Wyatt, Jan Sverák, Peter Farrelly, Ray Lawrence, Rolf De Heer.
Only Angels Have Wings

Only Angels Have Wings

1939 / USA / 121m / BW / Adventure, Buddy Film
Cary Grant, Jean Arthur, Richard Barthelmess, Rita Hayworth, Thomas Mitchell, Sig Ruman, John Carroll, Allyn Joslyn, Noah Beery Jr., Victor Kilian
"Take Hollywood's idea of a small banana republic in Central America, move in on its bar cum rooming-house cum airstrip, focus on the group of people living and working there, and you've got the basic elements of Hawks' terrific Only Angels Have Wings… Hemmed in by impassable mountains (all the time) and fog and blizzards (most of the time), the personal and work ethics of this little crew become magnified to epic proportions. But it's an epic played out in the confined space of the Dutchman's bar; the more claustrophobic because these men are flyers and need the open sky. If it sounds improbable, it is. Mythical cinema at its best." - Jane Clarke, Time Out
Selected by Allan Arkush, Mika Kaurismäki, Mike D'Angelo, John Carpenter, Mariano Llinás.
Opening Night

Opening Night

1977 / USA / 144m / Col / Ensemble Film, Showbiz Drama
Gena Rowlands, Ben Gazzara, John Cassavetes, Joan Blondell, Paul Stewart, Zohra Lampert, Laura Johnson, John Tuell, Ray Powers, John Finnegan
"For all of John Cassavetes's concern with acting, this 1977 film is the only one of his features that takes it on as a subject; it also boasts his most impressive cast. During the New Haven tryouts for a new play, an aging star (Rowlands), already distressed that she's playing a woman older than herself, is traumatized further by the accidental death of an adoring teenage fan (Johnson)… Juggling onstage and offstage action, Cassavetes makes this a fascinating look at some of the internal mechanisms and conflicts that create theatrical fiction, and his wonderful cast never lets him down." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Mike Figgis, Shion Sono, Dāvis Sīmanis, Dmitry Martov, Ik-June Yang.


The Word (English title)
Top 100 Film Ranking 34 (33)

1955 / Denmark / 125m / BW / Drama, Religious Drama
Henrik Malberg, Emil Hass Christensen, Preben Lerdoff-Rye, Cay Kristiansen, Birgitte Federspiel, Ejner Federspiel, Ove Rud, Ann Elisabeth Rud, Susanne Rud, Gerda Nielsen
"‘Powerful’ doesn’t do justice to this 1955 exploration of life, death and faith from Danish master Carl Theodor Dreyer. Based on Kaj Munk’s 1932 play, Ordet is an austere, realist work on one level as it joins a farming family in their Jutland home over a short but devastating period of time… But, on another level, this is a deeply spiritual, mysterious and wonderfully odd and bold work as Dreyer reaches to the heavens and beyond for answers… Ordet reminds us how in the end we know little about the mysteries of life. Dreyer manages to say all this within the framework of a strange, wondrous and shocking work. Once seen, it’s unlikely to leave you." - Dave Calhoun, Time Out
Selected by Andrey Zvyagintsev, Geoff Andrew, Hong Sang-soo, José Luis Guerín, Krzysztof Zanussi.


1992 / UK-Russia-France-Italy-Netherlands / 94m / Col / Drama, Fantasy
Tilda Swinton, Billy Zane, John Wood, Lothaire Bluteau, Charlotte Valandrey, Heathcote Williams, Quentin Crisp, Dudley Sutton, Peter Eyre, Thom Hoffman
"There are lots of intellectual traditions vying for ascendancy in Potter's adaptation of Virginia Woolf's 1928 modernist novel, but the joy is that the film comes over simply: a beautiful historical pageant of 400 years of English history, full of visual and aural pleasures, sly jokes, thought-provoking insights, emotional truths - and romance… The fine, stylised performances from an idiosyncratic international cast are admirably headed by Swinton's magnificent Orlando, who acts as the film's complicitous eyes and ears; and there's little to fault in Alexei Rodionov's cinematography, which renders the scenes with rare sensitivity." - Wally Hammond, Time Out
Selected by B. Ruby Rich, Marit Kapla, Sophie Mayer, Yvonne Tasker, Anneke Smelik.


Orphée (original title)

1950 / France / 95m / BW / Fantasy, Romantic Fantasy
Jean Marais, Maria Casares, Francois Perier, Marie Dea, Juliette Greco, Edouard Dermithe, Henri Cremieux, Pierre Bertin, Roger Blin, Jacques Varennes
"Jean Cocteau’s update of the Orpheus myth depicts a famous poet (Marais), scorned by the Left Bank youth, and his love for both his wife, Eurydice (Déa), and a mysterious princess (Casarès). Seeking inspiration, the poet follows the princess from the world of the living to the land of the dead, through Cocteau’s famous mirrored portal. Orpheus’s peerless visual poetry and dreamlike storytelling represent the legendary Cocteau at the height of his powers." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Anne Billson, Kevin Jackson, Paul Schrader, Peter Whitehead, Neville de Almeida.


1943 / Italy / 140m / BW / Drama, Crime
Clara Calamai, Massimo Girotti, Juan deLanda, Elio Marcuzzo, Dhia Cristani, Vittorio Duse, Michele Riccardini, Michele Sakara
"Visconti's stunning feature debut transposes The Postman Always Rings Twice to the endless, empty lowlands of the Po Delta. There, an itinerant labourer (Girotti) stumbles into a tatty roadside trattoria and an emotional quagmire. Seduced by Calamai, he disposes of her fat, doltish husband (De Landa), and the familiar Cain litany - lust, greed, murder, recrimination - begins. Ossessione is often described as the harbinger of neo-realism, but the pictorial beauty (and astute use of music, often ironically) are pure Visconti, while the bleak view of sexual passion poaches on authentic noir territory." - Sheila Johnston, Time Out
Selected by Christoph Hochhäusler, Fred Kelemen, Leonardo Quaresima, Stephen Frears, Vecdi Sayar.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.


1952 / Italy-France-Morocco-USA / 90m / BW / Drama, Tragedy
Orson Welles, Michael MacLiammoir, Suzanne Cloutier, Robert Coote, Hilton Edwards, Fay Compton, Michael Lawrence, Nicholas Bruce, Jean Davis, Doris Dowling
"Welles' sixth feature was shot in fits and starts over a period of four years, on a dozen locations in Morocco and Italy, often without money. Naturally, Welles turned the limitations into strengths. When the costumes didn't show up, he filmed in a Turkish bath. When an actor couldn't make it, he used a stand-in and changed his camera angle. When challenged to match footage shot in Mogador and Venice, he contrived dazzling webs of montage. This is Shakespeare filmed with love and powerhouse enthusiasm, never with reverence. The visual rhetoric is synchronised with the verbal imagery: they hit sensory overload together. A very great film noir." - Tony Rayns, Time Out
Selected by George A. Romero, Ben Walters, Lamia Joreige, Amos Gitai, Suzanne Liandrat-Guigues.
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, Geoff Andrew, Jim Emerson, Geoff Brown,.

Top 25 Documentary Films
1. The Man with a Movie Camera (Dziga Vertov, 1929)
2. Shoah (Claude Lanzmann, 1985)
3. Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami, 1990)
4. Sans soleil (Chris Marker, 1983)
5. Histoire(s) du cinéma (Jean-Luc Godard, 1998)
6. Night and Fog (Alain Resnais, 1955)
7. Nanook of the North (Robert Flaherty, 1922)
8. The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris, 1988)
9. F for Fake (Orson Welles, 1973)
10. Listen to Britain (Humphrey Jennings, 1942)
11. Tie Xi Qu: West of the Tracks (Wang Bing, 2003)
12. Quince Tree of the Sun (Victor Erice, 1992)
13. Don't Look Back (D.A. Pennebaker, 1967)
14. Man of Aran (Robert Flaherty, 1934)
15. The House is Black (Forugh Farrokhzad, 1963)
16. Land Without Bread (Luis Buñuel, 1932)
17. The Hour of the Furnaces (Octavio & Fernando E. Solanas Getino, 1968)
18. The Gleaners & I (Agnès Varda, 2000)
19. Koyaanisqatsi (Godfrey Reggio, 1982)
20. The Sorrow and the Pity (Marcel Ophüls, 1969)
21. Grey Gardens (David Maysles, Albert Maysles, Ellen Hovde & Muffie Meyer, 1975)
22. Gimme Shelter (Albert Maysles, David Maysles & Charlotte Zwerin, 1970)
23. Chronicle of a Summer (Jean Rouch & Edgar Morin, 1961)
24. Triumph of the Will (Leni Riefenstahl, 1935)
25. Hoop Dreams (Steve James, 1994)

Out of the Past

Out of the Past

1947 / USA / 97m / BW / Crime, Film Noir
Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, Kirk Douglas, Rhonda Fleming, Richard Webb, Steve Brodie, Virginia Huston, Paul Valentine, Dickie Moore, Ken Niles
"Out of the Past is cinematic perfection, a Hollywood classic that's as great and as enjoyable as its reputation has promised. The apotheosis of '40s film noir… The picture contains everything one might want in an old-time studio film -- plus good taste, complicated emotions and an adult moral sense. The black-and-white cinematography is stunning, even apart from its psychological pertinence. Robert Mitchum and Kirk Douglas, stars who went on to become icons, were rarely as vivid as they are here. Yet this is director Jacques Tourneur's show all the way. Tourneur doesn't sustain a mood so much as build it." - Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle
Selected by Lawrence Kasdan, Nick James, Alex Gibney, Patrick Keiller, Edgar Pêra.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
Out 1, noli me tangere

Out 1, noli me tangere

Out 1 (alternative title)
1971 / France / 729m / Col-BW / Drama, Comedy
Michele Moretti, Hermine Karagheuz, Karen Puig, Pierre Baillot, Marcel Bozonnet, Jean-Pierre Leaud, Michel Lonsdale, Sylvain Corthay, Edwine Moatti, Bernadette Onfroy
"An eight-part serial running about 12 and a half hours, this 1971 comedy drama is Jacques Rivette's grandest experiment and most exciting adventure in filmmaking. Balzac's History of the Thirteen, about a few Parisians who hope to control the city through their hidden interconnections, inspired its tale, dominated by two theater groups and two solitary individuals. Some of the major actors of the French New Wave participated, creating their own characters and improvising their own dialogue… What emerges is the definitive film about 60s counterculture." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Dennis Lim, Jonathan Romney, David Ehrenstein, B. Kite, Brad Stevens.
Outer Space

Outer Space

1999 / Austria / 10m / BW / Avant-garde-Experimental
"The film immediately creates an atmosphere of sinister foreboding in its liminal, transitory images of an amorphous night sky, heightened ambient sounds, and skewed, awkward angled framing of a modest home on an eerily tranquil rural street. Assembled from excerpts of found film from Sidney J. Furie's, The Entity (1988), Tscherkassky transforms the introductory images of a deserted, seemingly alien landscape into a startling, profoundly fractured, and increasingly haunted portrait of human desolation and descent into madness." - Acquarello, Strictly Film School
Selected by Athina Rachel Tsangari, Mike D'Angelo, Peter Strickland, Gary Thomas, Giulio Bursi.
The Outlaw Josey Wales

The Outlaw Josey Wales

1976 / USA / 135m / Col / Western, Outlaw (Gunfighter) Film
Clint Eastwood, Chief Dan George, Sondra Locke, Bill McKinney, John Vernon, Paula Trueman, Sam Bottoms, Geraldine Keams, Royal Dano, Woodrow Parfrey
"A remarkable film which sets out as a revenge Western: Eastwood sees his family massacred and joins the Confederate guerillas; after the Civil War, he is hunted by Union soldiers while he pursues his family's slayer and a friend apparently turned traitor. But slowly the film changes direction, until through a series of comic interludes it becomes the story of a man who (re)discovers his role as family man… If that seems like a rewrite of Hawks' Red River, visually The Outlaw Josey Wales is closest to Anthony Mann in its breathtaking survey of American landscapes (and seasons)." - Phil Hardy, Time Out
Selected by James Mangold, Keith Griffiths, Steven Galvin, Philip Kemp, Trey Parker.


Okraina (original title); Patriots (alternative title)

1933 / USSR / 98m / BW / War Drama, Period Film
Aleksandr Chistyakov, Sergey Komarov, Yelena Kuzmina, Nikolai Bogolyubov, Nikolai Kryuchkov, Hans Klering, Mikhail Zharov, Vladimir Uralsky, Robert Erdman, Andrei Fajt
"Barnet's seminal film harnessed the expressionistic potential of early Soviet sound technique to conjure a gently comic and affecting anti-war masterpiece. Set in an isolated Russian provincial village during World War I, the film portrays the complex relationship that develops between a German prisoner, Hans Klering, and his (for the most part) benign Russian captors. An inventive, lyrical plea for tolerance, the film's themes of divided loyalty and shared humanity are as relevant today as they were in 1933." - Australian Centre for the Moving Image
Selected by Arthur Mas, Jacques Rivette, Peter von Bagh, Tom Luddy, Andrzej Wajda.


Paisà (original title)

1946 / Italy / 120m / BW / Drama, War Drama
Maria Michi, Gar Moore, Carmela Sazio, Robert Van Loon, Benjamin Emmanuel, Harold Wagner, Dotts Johnson, Harriet Medin, William Tubbs, Dale Edmonds
"Roberto Rossellini’s follow-up to his breakout Rome Open City was the ambitious, enormously moving Paisan, which consists of six episodes set during the liberation of Italy at the end of World War II, and taking place across the country, from Sicily to the northern Po Valley. With its documentary-like visuals and its intermingled cast of actors and nonprofessionals, Italians and their American liberators, this look at the struggles of different cultures to communicate and of people to live their everyday lives in extreme circumstances is equal parts charming sentiment and vivid reality." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Martin Scorsese, Edgardo Cozarinsky, Federico Rossin, Jan Distelmeyer, Manuel Asín.
Palm Beach Story

The Palm Beach Story

1942 / USA / 90m / BW / Screwball Comedy, Comedy of Manners
Claudette Colbert, Joel McCrea, Rudy Vallee, Mary Astor, Siegfried Arno, Robert Warwick, William Demarest, Franklin Pangborn, Arthur Stuart Hull, Torben Meyer
"Sturges was riding high in the early '40s, writing and directing comedies of such density and wit that a moment's inattention might make an audience miss six great one-liners, five amazing bits of business, four eight-syllable words, and three crowd scenes. And few of his films were as smoothly accomplished as The Palm Beach Story, a knowing satire on the driving forces of sex and money, with Colbert fleeing from her righteous and penniless husband into the ridiculous arms of yachtsman billionaire Rudy Vallee. Hilarious, irresistible, impeccably cast." - Geoff Brown, Time Out
Selected by Ryan Gilbey, Gus Van Sant, Kevin Macdonald, Tom Charity, Julie Pearce.
Pandora's Box

Pandora's Box

Die Büchse der Pandora (original title)

1929 / Germany / 133m / BW / Drama, Melodrama
Louise Brooks, Fritz Kortner, Francis Lederer, Carl Goetz, Alice Roberts, Krafft Raschig, Gustav Diessl, Daisy d'Ora, Michael von Newlinsky, Siegfried Arno
"One of the masters of early German cinema, G. W. Pabst had an innate talent for discovering actresses (including Greta Garbo). And perhaps none of his female stars shone brighter than Kansas native and onetime Ziegfeld girl Louise Brooks, whose legendary persona was defined by Pabst’s lurid, controversial melodrama Pandora’s Box. Sensationally modern, the film follows the downward spiral of the fiery, brash, yet innocent showgirl Lulu, whose sexual vivacity has a devastating effect on everyone she comes in contact with. Daring and stylish, Pandora’s Box is one of silent cinema’s great masterworks and a testament to Brooks’s dazzling individuality." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Graham Fuller, Noël Burch, Peter Whitehead, Quentin Tarantino, Andrew Birkin.
Pan's Labyrinth

Pan's Labyrinth

El Laberinto del fauno (original title)

2006 / Spain-Mexico-USA / 120m / Col / Fantasy, Fairy Tales & Legends
Sergi Lopez, Maribel Verdu, Ivana Baquero, Alex Angulo, Doug Jones, Eusebio Lazaro, Paco Vidal, Federico Luppi, Ariadna Gil, Manolo Solo
"Pan's Labyrinth is a transcendent work of art. Del Toro's gratifying surreal and fantastical instincts now have an unstinting moral eye on the world. Saying a filmmaker has matured suggests that he's forgone what made him so entertaining in the first place. But in evolving with this voluptuously realized film, with its omnipresent dangers, Del Toro has simply refined the deftness of his storytelling. A beautiful film about ugliness, Pan's Labyrinth is still pure del Toro (the insects and slime, for instance, are still here), but he gazes through a grim historical lens." - Wesley Morris, The Boston Globe
Selected by Mark Kermode, David Rooney, Anupama Chopra, David S. Goyer, Ron Perlman.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
Paris, Texas

Paris, Texas

1984 / USA / 150m / Col / Drama, Road Movie
Harry Dean Stanton, Dean Stockwell, Aurore Clement, Nastassja Kinski, Hunter Carson, Bernhard Wicki, Viva, Socorro Valdez, Tom Farrell, John Lurie
"New German Cinema pioneer Wim Wenders brings his keen eye for landscape to the American Southwest in Paris, Texas, a profoundly moving character study written by Pulitzer Prize–winning playwright Sam Shepard. Paris, Texas follows the mysterious, nearly mute drifter Travis (Stanton) as he tries to reconnect with his young son, living with his brother (Stockwell) in Los Angeles, and his missing wife (Kinski). From this simple setup, Wenders and Shepard produce a powerful statement on codes of masculinity and the myth of the American family, as well as an exquisite visual exploration of a vast, crumbling world of canyons and neon." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Kriv Stenders, Dario Oliveira, David Flint, José Teodoro, Luke Gibbons.
Partie de campagne

Partie de campagne

A Day in the Country (English title); Une Partie de campagne (alternative title)

1936 / France / 40m / BW / Comedy Drama, Romance
Sylvia Bataille, Georges St. Saens, Jane Marken, Andre Gabriello, Jacques Brunius, Paul Temps, Gabrielle Fontan, Jean Renoir, Marguerite Renoir, Pierre Lestringuez
" It may be only a featurette, but this masterly adaptation of a Maupassant story is rich in both poetry and thematic content. On an idyllic country picnic, a young girl leaves her family and fiancé for a while, and succumbs to an all-too-brief romance. The careful reconstruction of period (around 1860) is enhanced by a typically touching generosity towards the characters and an aching, poignant sense of love lost but never forgotten. And, as always in Renoir, the river is far, far more than just a picturesque stretch of water. Witty and sensuous, it's pure magic." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Jirí Menzel, Mike D'Angelo, Fernando Trueba, Kevin Macdonald, Inácio Araújo.
The Party

The Party

1968 / USA / 99m / Col / Comedy, Slapstick
Peter Sellers, Claudine Longet, Marge Champion, J. Edward McKinley, Fay McKenzie, Sharron Kimberly, Denny Miller, Gavin MacLeod, Buddy Lester, Corinne Cole
"Blake Edwards effortlessly expands the style and format of a silent two-reel comedy into a feature-length celebration of the sight gag, as Indian bit player Peter Sellers, who has just destroyed a remake of Gunga Din, finds himself at an exclusive party at the Hollywood home of his producer. There are elephants, people falling into swimming pools, and mountains of soapsuds, but somehow the image that lingers in my mind is Sellers feeding “birdie num-nums” to a parrot." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Christoph Huber, Eric Derobert, Grégory Valens, Fritz Göttler, Tobias Kniebe.
The Passenger

The Passenger

Professione: reporter (original title)

1975 / Italy / 119m / Col / Road Movie, Psychological Drama
Jack Nicholson, Maria Schneider, Jenny Runacre, Ian Hendry, Steven Berkoff, Ambroise Bia, Jose Maria Caffarel, James Campbell, Manfred Spies, Jean-Baptiste Tiemele
"Released in 1975 to mixed reviews and audience indifference -- if you went to see a Nicholson film that year, it was One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest -- The Passenger now looks to be one of the deepest, most rigorous, and most rewarding films of its era. In a post-'60s culture increasingly obsessed with the self, the movie pulled the rug out from under its main character's very identity, asking us to consider whether a man's name or his actions outlast him. This may be the first existentialist star vehicle, and it is mesmerizing. The movie is also as methodical as a case study, so if you have a need for speed, stay away. Your loss." - Ty Burr, The Boston Globe
Selected by Chris Darke, Walter Salles, Abderrahmane Sissako, Tata Amaral, Ulrich Seidl.


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.
The Passion of Joan of Arc

The Passion of Joan of Arc

La Passion de Jeanne d'Arc (original title)
Top 100 Film Ranking 16 (16)

1928 / France / 110m / BW / Historical Film, Hagiography
Renee Maria Falconette, Eugene Sylvain, Maurice Schutz, Michel Simon, Antonin Artaud, Louis Ravet, Andre Berley, Jean d'Yd, Jacques Ama, Alexandre Mihalesco
"Stunning in its power, uncompromising in its severity and seriousness, Carl Theodor Dreyer's silent masterpiece from 1928 all but scorches a hole in the screen. The martyrdom of Joan of Arc is represented in what is almost a series of painterly close-ups, most compellingly on Joan's face as she is taunted and tormented by an ecclesiastical court… It could almost have been made at any time; there is nothing the least bit creaky about it technically. On the contrary, it transcends the limitations of early cinema, and its simplicity and procedural asceticism are inspired." - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
Selected by Armond White, Atom Egoyan, Béla Tarr, Jonathan Glazer, Jørgen Leth.
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 Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Nick Roddick, Constantin Popescu, Ian Penman, Jean-Pierre Garcia.
Pather Panchali

Pather Panchali

Top 100 Film Ranking 59 (57)

1955 / India / 112m / BW / Rural Drama, Family Drama
Kanu Banerji, Karuna Banerji, Uma Das Gupta, Subir Banerji, Chunibala Devi, Runki Banerji, Reva Devi, Rama Gangopadhaya, Tulshi Chakraborty, Harimoran Nag
"Fresh as a daisy after all these years, Satyajit Ray's 1955 spellbinder comes underpinned by a tumultuous Ravi Shankar sitar and paints a ground's-eye portrait of life in an impoverished Bengali village. This is a place where the thundering locomotives offer the promise of flight, where decrepit relatives take themselves quietly off to die, and where a child's petty thievery emerges as a defiant act of self-empowerment. The first chapter in Ray's fabled Apu trilogy, Pather Panchali was shot on the cheap, at weekends, with an untried crew. They rustled up a film that is at once intensely local and gloriously universal." - Xan Brooks, The Guardian
Selected by Adoor Gopalakrishnan, David Robinson, Garin Nugroho, J. Hoberman, Greg Mottola.
Paths of Glory

Paths of Glory

1957 / USA / 86m / BW / Anti-War Film, War Drama
Kirk Douglas, Adolphe Menjou, Ralph Meeker, George Macready, Wayne Morris, Timothy Carey, Joseph Turkel, Richard Anderson, Peter Capell, Suzanne Christian
"Stanley Kubrick’s Paths of Glory is among the most powerful antiwar films ever made. A fiery Kirk Douglas stars as a World War I French colonel who goes head-to-head with the army’s ruthless top brass when his men are accused of cowardice after being unable to carry out an impossible mission. This haunting, exquisitely photographed dissection of the military machine in all its absurdity and capacity for dehumanization (a theme Kubrick would continue to explore throughout his career) is assembled with its legendary director’s customary precision, from its tense trench warfare sequences to its gripping courtroom climax to its ravaging final scene." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Joseph Cedar, Michael Caton-Jones, Woody Allen, David Leland, Ernesto Diezmartínez.

Top 25 Westerns
1. The Searchers (John Ford, 1956)
2. Rio Bravo (Howard Hawks, 1959)
3. The Wild Bunch (Sam Peckinpah, 1969)
4. Once Upon a Time in the West (Sergio Leone, 1968)
5. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (John Ford, 1962)
6. My Darling Clementine (John Ford, 1946)
7. Stagecoach (John Ford, 1939)
8. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Sergio Leone, 1966)
9. Red River (Howard Hawks, 1948)
10. McCabe & Mrs. Miller (Robert Altman, 1971)
11. Unforgiven (Clint Eastwood, 1992)
12. Johnny Guitar (Nicholas Ray, 1954)
13. High Noon (Fred Zinnemann, 1952)
14. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (George Roy Hill, 1969)
15. Heaven's Gate (Michael Cimino, 1980)
16. Shane (George Stevens, 1953)
17. Dead Man (Jim Jarmusch, 1995)
18. Wagon Master (John Ford, 1950)
19. Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (Sam Peckinpah, 1973)
20. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (John Ford, 1949)
21. Fort Apache (John Ford, 1948)
22. The Outlaw Josey Wales (Clint Eastwood, 1976)
23. Ride the High Country (Sam Peckinpah, 1962)
24. El Dorado (Howard Hawks, 1967)
25. Duel in the Sun (King Vidor, 1946)

Peeping Tom

Peeping Tom

1960 / UK / 109m / Col / Thriller, Psychological Thriller
Karlheinz Bohm, Anna Massey, Maxine Audley, Moira Shearer, Esmond Knight, Michael Goodliffe, Shirley Anne Field, Brenda Bruce, Bartlett Mullins, Martin Miller
"Few films have as strange and tortured a destiny as Peeping Tom. Unanimously savaged by critics at the time of its 1960 release, Michael Powell's sympathetic portrait of a mild-mannered serial killer was pulled from London theaters in less than a week… Today, thanks largely to a 1980 revival engineered by Powell enthusiast and fellow director Martin Scorsese, Peeping Tom is rightly seen as a horror classic and sophisticated psychological journey… Peeping Tom was a bold, subversive risk. Far ahead of its time, it's a study in voyeurism that equates photography and moviemaking with scopophilia, the morbid urge to gaze." - Edward Guthmann, San Francisco Chronicle
Selected by Anurag Kashyap, Gerardo Naranjo, Richard Kwietniowski, Thomas Dawson, Keith Uhlich.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
Pepe le Moko

Pépé le Moko

1937 / France / 94m / BW / Romantic Drama, Gangster Film
Jean Gabin, Mireille Balin, Gabriel Gabrio, Lucas Gridoux, Gilbert Gil, Line Noro, Saturnin Fabre, Fernand Charpin, Marcel Dalio, Charles Granval
"The notorious Pépé le moko (Jean Gabin, in a truly iconic performance) is a wanted man: women long for him, rivals hope to destroy him, and the law is breathing down his neck at every turn. On the lam in the labyrinthine Casbah of Algiers, Pépé is safe from the clutches of the police—until a Parisian playgirl compels him to risk his life and leave its confines once and for all. One of the most influential films of the 20th century and a landmark of French poetic realism." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Ruth Barton, Ginette Vincendeau, Juzaburo Futaba, Patrice Leconte, Kaneto Shindo.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.


1970 / UK / 105m / Col / Psychological Drama, Satire
James Fox, Mick Jagger, Anita Pallenberg, Michele Breton, Ann Sidney, Johnny Shannon, Anthony Valentine, John Burdon, Stanley Meadows, Allan Cuthbertson
"Roeg's debut as a director is a virtuoso juggling act which manipulates its visual and verbal imagery so cunningly that the borderline between reality and fantasy is gradually eliminated. The first half-hour is straight thriller enough to suggest a Kray Bros documentary… the latter half becomes one of Roeg's most complex visual kaleidoscopes as pop star and enforcer coalesce in a marriage of heaven and hell (or underworld and underground) where the common denominator is Big Business." - Tom Milne, Time Out
Selected by John Michael McDonagh, Ben Wheatley, Billy Chainsaw, Brian Dillon, Clio Barnard.


Top 100 Film Ranking 19 (19)
1966 / Sweden / 81m / BW / Drama, Psychological Drama
Liv Ullmann, Bibi Andersson, Margaretha Krook, Gunnar Bjornstrand, Jorgen Lindstrom
"Bergman at his most brilliant as he explores the symbiotic relationship that evolves between an actress suffering a breakdown in which she refuses to speak, and the nurse in charge as she recuperates in a country cottage. To comment is to betray the film's extraordinary complexity, but basically it returns to two favourite Bergman themes: the difficulty of true communication between human beings, and the essentially egocentric nature of art.… Not an easy film, but an infinitely rewarding one." - Tom Milne, Time Out
Selected by Sarah Polley, Geoffrey Macnab, Ang Lee, Quim Casas, Atom Egoyan.
The Phantom of Liberty

The Phantom of Liberty

Le Fantôme de la liberté (original title)

1974 / France / 104m / Col / Satire, Black Comedy
Bernard Verley, Jean-Claude Brialy, Monica Vitti, Milena Vukotic, Michel Lonsdale, Michel Piccoli, Jean Rochefort, Claude Pieplu, Julien Bertheau, Adriana Asti
"Bourgeois convention is demolished in Luis Buñuel’s surrealist gem The Phantom of Liberty. Featuring an elegant soiree with guests seated at toilet bowls, poker-playing monks using religious medals as chips, and police officers looking for a missing girl who is right under their noses, this perverse, playfully absurd comedy of non sequiturs deftly compiles many of the themes that preoccupied Buñuel throughout his career—from the hypocrisy of conventional morality to the arbitrariness of social arrangements." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Michel Gondry, Li Yang, Ben Wheatley, Anton Dolin, Heinz Emigholz.
Phantom of the Paradise

Phantom of the Paradise

1974 / USA / 92m / Col / Rock Musical, Satire
Paul Williams, William Finley, Jessica Harper, George Memmoli, Gerrit Graham, Archie Hahn, Jeffrey Commanor, Harold Oblong, Colin Cameron, David Garland
"Phantom of the Paradise, Brian De Palma’s Faustian fulmination against the soulless corporatization of art and artist, stands as the fullest expression of the filmmaker’s penchant for anti-establishment satire along the lines of Greetings and Hi, Mom! Excepting the occasional work-for-hire sop (Wise Guys) and studio-hamstrung misfire (The Bonfire of the Vanities), comedy would essentially take a back seat to voyeuristic thrills in De Palma’s subsequent body of work. Certainly, De Palma would never again mine this satirical vein with such incendiary results. That Phantom of the Paradise is also a full-on musical, complete with song-and-dance routines, only compounds the film’s inimical strangeness—and such wilful eccentricity is exacerbated by tonal fluctuations that manage to cohere finally into an unexpectedly poignant tragicomedy." - Budd Wilkins, Slant Magazine
Selected by Steve Gravestock, Mike White, Toni Vall, Manuel Gómez Pereira, Machiyama Tomohiro.
The Philadelphia Story

The Philadelphia Story

1940 / USA / 112m / BW / Screwball Comedy, Romantic Comedy
Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant, James Stewart, Ruth Hussey, John Howard, Roland Young, Virginia Weidler, Henry Daniell, John Halliday, Mary Nash
"Cukor and Donald Ogden Stewart's evergreen version of Philip Barry's romantic farce, centreing on a socialite wedding threatened by scandal, is a delight from start to finish, with everyone involved working on peak form… Superbly directed by Cukor, the film is a marvel of timing and understated performances, effortlessly transcending its stage origins without ever feeling the need to 'open out' in any way. The wit still sparkles; the ambivalent attitude towards the rich and idle is still resonant; and the moments between Stewart and Hepburn, drunk and flirty on the moonlit terrace, tingle with a real, if rarely explicit, eroticism." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by J.J. Abrams, Ken Hollings, Laura Kern, Bill Rothman, Owen Gleiberman.
The Piano

The Piano

1993 / New Zealand-Australia-France / 121m / Col / Romantic Drama, Period Film
Holly Hunter, Harvey Keitel, Sam Neill, Anna Paquin, Kerry Walker, Tungia Baker, Genevieve Lemon, Ian Mune, Peter Dennett, Alison Barrett
"The Piano plays itself with such contrapuntal richness, it resonates in you forever. Set in 19th-century New Zealand, this saga of will, destiny and passion starring Holly Hunter is an extraordinary symphony of sounds and silence, of lilting pleasure and tangled horror... There's something mystically compelling about writer/director Jane Campion's 1993 Cannes winner. On one level, it's a fairy tale for adults. But on others, it evokes powerful eroticism, sexual mustiness, emotional anguish and numerous other themes... You experience this mix of mythic and corporeal on the pinions of cinematic fancy." - Desson Howe, The Washington Post
Selected by Ava DuVernay, Niki Caro, Pam Cook, Patricia Rozema, Rachel Perkins.
The Piano Teacher

The Piano Teacher

La Pianiste (original title)

2001 / Austria-France-Germany / 130m / Col / Psychological Drama, Erotic Drama
Isabelle Huppert, Benoit Magimel, Annie Girardot, Susanne Lothar, Udo Samel, Anna Sigalevitch, Cornelia Kongden, Thomas Weinhappel, Georg Friedrich, Philipp Heiss
"Michael Haneke's tale of a sado-masochistic music professor is far more disturbing than any horror film... Some might conclude that by juxtaposing high culture and S&M filth, while offering no obvious palliative psychological explanation, The Piano Teacher is Euro art-shock porn. But that is to overlook its cold and steely brilliance: an inspired nightmare - chamber music for a chamber of horrors. And in her severity, her mad anger and tragic fear of love, Isabelle Huppert gives one of the most compelling performances to be seen this year." - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
Selected by David Sorfa, Mika Taanila, Sean Durkin, Xavier Dolan, Hannah Fidell.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.


Top 100 Film Ranking 81 (76)

1959 / France / 75m / BW / Crime Drama, Psychological Drama
Martin LaSalle, Marika Green, Pierre Leymarie, Jean Pelegri, Dolly Scal, Kassagi, Pierre Etaix, Cesar Gattegno, Sophie Saint-Just, Dominique Zardi
"This incomparable story of crime and redemption from the French master Robert Bresson follows Michel, a young pickpocket who spends his days working the streets, subway cars, and train stations of Paris. As his compulsive pursuit of the thrill of stealing grows, however, so does his fear that his luck is about to run out. A cornerstone of the career of this most economical and profoundly spiritual of filmmakers, Pickpocket is an elegantly crafted, tautly choreographed study of humanity in all its mischief and grace, the work of a director at the height of his powers." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Agnès Varda, Quim Casas, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Chris Darke, Corneliu Porumboiu.


Xiao Wu (original title)

1997 / China-Hong Kong / 108m / Col / Drama, Crime
Hongwei Wang, Hao Hongjian, Zuo Baitao, Ma Jinrei, Liu Junying, Liang Yonghao, An Qunyan, Jiang Dongdong, Zhao Long, Wang Reiren
"Jia Zhang-ke's touching and accomplished first feature, cast entirely with nonprofessional actors, is somewhat uncharacteristic in that it's basically a character study. Set in Jia's Chinese hometown (Fenyang in Shanxi province), it focuses on a rather pathetic pickpocket who runs a small gang of younger thieves. His profession makes him an outcast and his romantic and social possibilities are steadily shrinking. Though the film lacks the epic sweep of Jia's subsequent features (Platform, Unknown Pleasures, The World, Still Life), it imparts much about the provincial town, and it's so impressive in its own right that I can understand why some prefer it to his later work." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Ann Hui, Stanley Rosen, Lai Miu-suet , Jian Yi, Zhang Yibai .
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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Pickup on South Street

1953 / USA / 80m / BW / Thriller, Film Noir
Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Thelma Ritter, Murvyn Vye, Richard Kiley, Willis Bouchey, Milburn Stone, Henry Slate, Jerry O'Sullivan, Harry Carter
"Petty crook Skip McCoy (Widmark) has his eyes fixed on the big score. When the cocky three-time convict picks the pocketbook of unsuspecting Candy (Peters), he finds a haul bigger than he could have imagined… Tailed by manipulative Feds and the unwitting courier’s Communist puppeteers, Skip and Candy find themselves in a precarious gambit that pits greed against redemption, Right versus Red, and passion against self-preservation. With its dazzling cast and director Samuel Fuller’s signature raw energy and hardboiled repartee, Pickup on South Street is a true film noir classic by one of America’s most passionate cinematic craftsmen." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Lee Daniels, Daniel Calparsoro, Leos Carax, Elric Kane, Dinko Tucakovic.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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
"This sensual and striking chronicle of a disappearance and its aftermath put director Peter Weir on the map and helped usher in a new era of Australian cinema. Based on an acclaimed 1967 novel by Joan Lindsay, Picnic at Hanging Rock is set at the turn of the twentieth century and concerns a small group of students from an all- female college who vanish, along with a chaperone, while on a St. Valentine’s Day outing. Less a mystery than a journey into the mystic, as well as an inquiry into issues of class and sexual repression in Australian society, Weir’s gorgeous, disquieting film is a work of poetic horror whose secrets haunt viewers to this day." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Darrell Roodt, Niki Caro, Emma Wilson, Miroslaw Przylipiak, Vlado Skafar.
Pierrot le fou

Pierrot le fou

Crazy Pete (English title)
Top 100 Film Ranking 65 (67) Orange Up-Arrow

1965 / France-Italy / 110m / Col / Road Movie, Romantic Drama
Jean-Paul Belmondo, Anna Karina, Dirk Sanders, Raymond Devus, Graziella Galvani, Samuel Fuller, Laszlo Szabo, Jean-Pierre Leaud, Roger Dutoit, Hans Meyer
"Dissatisfied in marriage and life, Ferdinand (Belmondo) takes to the road with the babysitter, his ex-lover Marianne Renoir (Karina), and leaves the bourgeoisie behind. Yet this is no normal road trip: genius auteur Jean-Luc Godard’s tenth feature in six years is a stylish mash-up of consumerist satire, politics, and comic-book aesthetics, as well as a violent, zigzag tale of, as Godard called them, “the last romantic couple.” With blissful color imagery by cinematographer Raoul Coutard and Belmondo and Karina at their most animated, Pierrot le fou is one of the high points of the French New Wave." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by David Thomson, Jonathan Romney, Michael Atkinson, Laura Mulvey, Patrick Tam.
Pink Flamingos

Pink Flamingos

1972 / USA / 92m / Col / Comedy, Trash Film
Divine, David Lochary, Mary Vivian Pearce, Mink Stole, Danny Mills, Edith Massey, Channing Wilroy, Cookie Mueller, Paul Swift, Susan Walsh
"Divine, a 300-pound transvestite, plays a woman who is forced to fend off challengers to her title as 'The Filthiest Person Alive,' in this case an exhibitionist couple that kidnaps hitchhikers, impregnates them, sells the babies to lesbian couples, and uses the money to fund schoolyard heroin rackets. Everything you've heard about Pink Flamingos is true, but what the reports of chicken-fucking and other abominations fail to convey is just how funny the movie is… In a nostalgic culture gone retro-chic mad, bad taste with an aggressively offensive edge never seemed so relevant." - Keith Phipps, A.V. Club
Selected by Ant Timpson, Vic Pratt, Rob St. Mary, Nathan Tyler, Monika Treut.


1940 / USA / 88m / Col / Children's Fantasy, Animated Musical
Dickie Jones, Christian Rub, Cliff Edwards, Mel Blanc, Don Brodie, Walter Catlett, Marion Darlington, Frankie Darro, Charles Judels, Evelyn Venable
"Pinocchio is a parable for children, and generations have grown up remembering the words "Let your conscience be your guide" and "A lie keeps growing and growing until it's as plain as the nose on your face." The power of the film is generated, I think, because it is really about something. It isn't just a concocted fable or a silly fairy tale, but a narrative with deep archetypal reverberations… Later Disney films would have comparable skill, but not the excitement of discovery. Is it possible to sense, through thousands of individual drawings by dozens of different artists, a collective creative epiphany? I think so." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Jaime Chávarri, Arturo Ripstein, Joe Dante, Gary Thomas, Peter Machen.
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, Monte Hellman, Dennis Hopper.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.


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, Manuel Gutiérrez Aragon, José Luis Garci, José Luis Rebordinos, Diego Galán.
Le Plaisir

Le Plaisir

House of Pleasure (English title)

1952 / France / 97m / BW / Romance, Drama
Claude Dauphin, Gaby Morlay, Madeleine Renaud, Jean Servais, Daniel Gelin, Simone Simon, Danielle Darrieux, Ginette Leclerc, Jean Gabin, Pierre Brasseur
"Ophüls' second French film following his return from the USA was adapted from three stories by Maupassant… Although Ophüls had to drop a fourth story intended to contrast pleasure and death, these three on old age, purity and marriage are shot with a supreme elegance and sympathy, and the central tale in particular luxuriates in the Normandy countryside. The whole is summed up by the concluding line, that 'happiness is no lark'." - David Thompson, Time Out
Selected by V.F. Perkins, Alexander Jacoby, David Hare, Anja Kirschner, Fernando F. Croce.


Zhantai (original title)

2000 / China-Hong Kong-Japan-France / 154m / Col / Comedy Drama, Ensemble Film
Hong Wei Wang, Tao Zhao, Jing Dong Liang, Tian Yi Yang, Bo Wang, Sanming Han
"Fenyang in Shanxi Province, Jia's hometown and already the setting for Xiao Wu, provides the anchor for an epic account of the changes in China's pop culture in the 1980s, as seen across the lives of four friends. In 1979 all four are members of a state-run variety troupe, presenting Maoist propaganda shows to passive audiences in the sticks. By the mid-1980s, when state support is withdrawn and the troupe tries to reform as a private enterprise, everything is different... Jia uses large-scale vignettes, filmed in sequence shots, to chart ten years of far-reaching social changes and their psychological repercussions. A masterly achievement." - Tony Rayns, Time Out
Selected by Dennis Lim, Gavin Smith, Nobuhiro Yamashita, Andréa Picard, Kaushik Bhaumik.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.

Top 25 Films Over 3 Hours Long
1. Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954)
2. The Godfather Part II (Francis Ford Coppola, 1974)
3. Andrei Rublev (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1966)
4. Lawrence of Arabia (David Lean, 1962)
5. Barry Lyndon (Stanley Kubrick, 1975)
6. Fanny and Alexander (Ingmar Bergman, 1982)
7. Les Enfants du paradis (Marcel Carné, 1945)
8. Shoah (Claude Lanzmann, 1985)
9. The Leopard (Luchino Visconti, 1963)
10. Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (Chantal Akerman, 1975)
11. Sátántangó (Béla Tarr, 1994)
12. Once Upon a Time in America (Sergio Leone, 1984)
13. The Mother and the Whore (Jean Eustache, 1973)
14. Gone with the Wind (Victor Fleming, 1939)
15. A Brighter Summer Day (Edward Yang, 1991)
16. Histoire(s) du cinéma (Jean-Luc Godard, 1998)
17. The Deer Hunter (Michael Cimino, 1978)
18. Napoléon (Abel Gance, 1927)
19. Dekalog (Krzysztof Kieslowski, 1988)
20. Rocco and His Brothers (Luchino Visconti, 1960)
21. Celine and Julie Go Boating (Jacques Rivette, 1974)
22. The Travelling Players (Theo Angelopoulos, 1975)
23. Schindler's List (Steven Spielberg, 1993)
24. Magnolia (Paul Thomas Anderson, 1999)
25. The Birth of a Nation (D.W. Griffith, 1915)



Play Time (alternative title)
Top 100 Film Ranking 47 (50) Orange Up-Arrow

1967 / France / 108m / Col / Satire, Urban Comedy
Jacques Tati, Barbara Dennek, Jacqueline Lecomte, Valerie Camille, France Rumilly, France Delahelle, Laure Paillette, Colette Proust, Erika Dentzler, Yvette Ducreux
"Jacques Tati’s gloriously choreographed, nearly wordless comedies about confusion in the age of technology reached their creative apex with Playtime. For this monumental achievement, a nearly three-year-long, bank-breaking production, Tati again thrust the endearingly clumsy, resolutely old-fashioned Monsieur Hulot, along with a host of other lost souls, into a bafflingly modernist Paris. With every inch of its superwide frame crammed with hilarity and inventiveness, Playtime is a lasting testament to a modern age tiptoeing on the edge of oblivion." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Dave Kehr, Kristin Thompson, Manoel de Oliveira, Peter Tscherkassky, Richard Brody.
Point Blank

Point Blank

1967 / USA / 92m / Col / Crime, Thriller
Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson, Keenan Wynn, Carroll O'Connor, Lloyd Bochner, Michael Strong, John Vernon, Sharon Acker, James B. Sikking, Sandra Warner
"Point Blank has gradually become regarded as one of the seminal films of late 1960s American cinema. It was made at the peak of Lee Marvin’s booming stardom, and is the first of British director John Boorman’s films to survey his common preoccupation with a character (or often set of characters) let loose in an environment – modern or primeval – they can barely comprehend and plainly don’t belong to. It is, in the best sense of the term, a haunted, dream-like film that draws upon the spatial and temporal experiments of modernist European art cinema, most particularly the work of Alain Resnais." - Adrian Danks, Senses of Cinema
Selected by Park Chan-wook, Andrew Haigh, Geoff Dyer, Robert Haller, Neil Young.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
Port of Shadows

Port of Shadows

Le Quai des brumes (original title)

1938 / France / 91m / BW / Romantic Drama, Crime Drama
Jean Gabin, Michele Morgan, Michel Simon, Pierre Brasseur, Robert Le Vigan, Raymond Aimos, Marcel Peres, Jenny Burnay, Edouard Delmont, Rene Genin
"Down a foggy, desolate road to the port city of Le Havre travels Jean (Gabin), an army deserter looking for another chance to make good on life. Fate, however, has a different plan for him, as acts of both revenge and kindness render him front-page news… Port of Shadows starkly portrays an underworld of lonely souls wrestling with their own destinies. Based on the novel by Pierre Mac Orlan, the inimitable team of director Marcel Carné and writer Jacques Prévert deliver a quintessential example of poetic realism and a classic film from the golden age of French cinema." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by John Sayles, David Panos, Igor Soukmanov, Michael Wedel, Nigel Algar.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.


1981 / France-West Germany / 127m / Col / Marriage Drama, Supernatural Horror
Isabelle Adjani, Sam Neill, Margit Carstensen, Heinz Bennent, Johanna Hofer, Carl Duering, Shaun Lawton, Michael Hogben, Maximillian Ruthlein, Thomas Frey
"There are marriages on the rocks and then there's the fever-pitch non-bliss between Mark (Neill) and Anna (Adjani) in this head-spinning masterpiece from Poland's Andrzej Zulawski… Possession incorporates more and more fantastical elements as it goes on---such as a spectacular goo-and-gore-covered creature built by E.T. designer Carlo Rambaldi---but the story somehow remains rooted in the harsh realities of human experience. That the film is much more than a gawk-at-it freak show is testament to Zulawski's talent for making even the most exaggerated behavior resonate with pointed and potent emotion." - Keith Uhlich, Time Out New York
Selected by Adam Wingard, Anja Kirschner, David Panos, Mark Pilkington, Gerardo Naranjo.
Il Posto

Il Posto

The Job (English title); The Sound of Trumpets (alternative title)

1961 / Italy / 93m / BW / Drama, Psychological Drama
Sandro Panseri, Loredana Detto, Tullio Kezich, Mara Revel
"When young Domenico (Panseri) ventures from the small village of Meda to Milan in search of employment, he finds himself on the bottom rung of the bureaucratic ladder in a huge, faceless company. The prospects are daunting, but Domenico finds reason for hope in the fetching Antonietta (Detto). A tender coming-of-age story and a sharp observation of dehumanizing corporate enterprise, Ermanno Olmi’s Il posto is a touching and hilarious tale of one young man’s stumbling entrance into the perils of modern adulthood." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Aaron Katz, Susan Oxtoby, Vadim Rizov, Richard Lester, Matthew Wilkinson.
The Princess Bride

The Princess Bride

1987 / USA / 98m / Col / Adventure Comedy, Fairy Tale
Cary Elwes, Mandy Patinkin, Chris Sarandon, Christopher Guest, Wallace Shawn, Andre the Giant, Robin Wright, Peter Falk, Carol Kane, Peter Cook
"Writer William Goldman's love story of a farm boy-turned-swashbuckling hero, the princess he rescues from an arranged marriage, and the friendships and revenges the two encounter along the way recreates the high-flying milieu of a Fairbanks or Flynn adventure yarn… Reiner's contribution was to cast actors in the lead parts who captured the folkloric ambiance of the script in their performances with similar apparent ease… The result is a film of remarkable forwardness, honesty, and humor, built, like all fairy tales, around one message, summed up late in the script: "True love is the greatest thing in the world." - Arthur Ryel-Lindsey, Slant Magazine
Selected by Wanuri Kahiu, Benjamin Spacek, Sonke Wortmann, Vadim Jean, Nelson Lau.
Princess Mononoke

Princess Mononoke

Mononoke-hime (original title)

1997 / Japan / 134m / Col / Anime, Fantasy Adventure
Yoji Matsuda, Yuriko Ishida, Yuko Tanaka, Kaoru Kobayashi, Masahiko Nishimura, Tsunehiko Kamijo, Sumi Shimamoto, Tetsu Watanabe, Mitsuru Sato, Akira Nagoya
"While watching Princess Mononoke, a landmark feat of Japanese animation from the acknowledged master of the genre, it's very easy to understand the film's phenomenal popularity. Outdone only by Titanic as Japan's box-office champ, this intricate, epic fable is amazing to behold. No wonder the filmmaker, Hayao Miyazaki, is acknowledged as an inspiration among his American counterparts who have reinvented animated storytelling in the post-Little Mermaid era." - Janet Maslin, The New York Times
Selected by Carolina López Caballero, Diego Batlle, Sean Cubitt, Kjetil Lismoen, Jonathan Lack.
Princess Yang Kwei Fei

Princess Yang Kwei Fei

Yôkihi (original title); The Empress Yang Kwei Fei (alternative title)

1955 / Japan-Hong Kong / 98m / Col / Historical Film, Historical Epic
Machiko Kyo, Masayuki Mori, Soh Yamamura, Eitaro Shindo, Eitaro Ozawa, Haruko Sugimura, Yoko Minamida, Bontaro Miyake, Tatsuya Ishiguro, Michiko Ai
"The first color film of the great Japanese director Kenji Mizoguchi, produced as a big-budget spectacular by the Shaw brothers of Hong Kong (who were later responsible for the kung fu craze). The film is not as resolutely personal as Ugetsu or Sansho, yet Mizoguchi is able to navigate the commercial requirements with supreme grace. It has the aura of a fairy tale—in 18th-century China, an emperor falls in love with a servant girl—yet the emotions it provokes are anything but simple. Again, Mizoguchi focuses his attention on the strength of women in the face of male frailty. In a final breathtaking camera movement, he elevates that strength to an eternal principle." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Lloyd Kaufman, Gilles Jacob, Jose Luis Guarner, Marcos Ribas de Faria, Inácio Araujo.
The Producers

The Producers

1968 / USA / 88m / Col / Showbiz Comedy, Farce
Zero Mostel, Gene Wilder, Kenneth Mars, Dick Shawn, Estelle Winwood, Renee Taylor, Lee Meredith, Christopher Hewett, Andreas Voutsinas, Michael Davis
"This is one of the funniest movies ever made. To see it now is to understand that. To see it for the first time in 1968, when I did, was to witness audacity so liberating that not even There's Something About Mary rivals it. The movie was like a bomb going off inside the audience's sense of propriety. There is such rapacity in its heroes, such gleeful fraud, such greed, such lust, such a willingness to compromise every principle, that we cave in and go along." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Christopher Fowler, Ian Penman, Joe Mantegna, Jonathan Ross, Nick Kroll.


1977 / France-Switzerland / 110m / Col / Drama, Ensemble Film
John Gielgud, Dirk Bogarde, Ellen Burstyn, David Warner, Elaine Stritch, Cyril Luckham, Denis Lawson, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Milo Sperber, Samson Fainsilber
"Alain Resnais' first feature in English focuses on the imagination, dreams, and memories of an aging British novelist (Gielgud) over one night as he mentally composes and recomposes his last book… Like all of Resnais' best work, this is shot through with purposeful and lyrical enigmas, but the family profile that emerges is warm and penetrating… The superb performances and Miklos Rozsa's sumptuous Hollywood-style score give the film's conceit a moving monumentality and depth, and Resnais' insights into the fiction-making process are mesmerizing and beautiful." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Michel Ciment, Gunnar Almer, José Carlos Avellar, Mingchuam Huang, Tacita Dean.


Top 100 Film Ranking 26 (26)

1960 / USA / 109m / BW / Thriller, Psychological Thriller
Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin, Martin Balsam, John McIntire, Simon Oakland, John Anderson, Lurene Tuttle, Frank Albertson
"Where would we be without Psycho? Fifty years on and Hitch’s delicious cod-Freudian nightmare about a platinum-blonde embezzler (Leigh) who neglected to consult a guide before selecting her motel still has much to answer for. It blazed a bloody trail for the much-loved slasher cycle, but it also assured us that a B-movie could be A-grade in quality and innovation. It dared to suggest that your star didn’t need to surface from an ordeal smelling of roses (or, indeed, at all). It combined a knife, a scream, a melon, some chocolate sauce, Bernard Herrmann’s greatest score and more than 70 edits to push the envelope of screen violence." - David Jenkins, Time Out
Selected by Joe Dante, Esteve Riambau, Edward Buscombe, Bruce Robinson, Christopher Frayling.
Pulp Fiction

Pulp Fiction

Top 100 Film Ranking 75 (80) Orange Up-Arrow

1994 / USA / 154m / Col / Crime Comedy, Ensemble Film
John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Uma Thurman, Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Bruce Willis, Rosanna Arquette, Amanda Plummer, Eric Stoltz, Steve Buscemi
"Quentin Tarantino's Pulp Fiction is a film both monumental and immediately accessible, a 2 1/2-hour picture whose energy never flags. It is an exhilaration from beginning to end. It's the movie equivalent of that rare sort of novel where you find yourself checking to see how many pages are left and hoping there are more, not fewer. The tone is darkly comic in the face of almost operatic violence, though only the most squeamish of viewers will be put off. With Tarantino we get violence as part of an impish vision of life in which anything can happen -- and does… Pulp Fiction is a picture that will stand up to repeat viewings." - Mick LaSalle, San Francisco Chronicle
Selected by Michael Apted, Atom Egoyan, Thomas Elsaesser, Wang Xiaoshuai, David O. Russell.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
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 Neill Blomkamp, Miranda July, Lee Unkrich, Constantin Popescu, Joko Anwar.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
The Puppetmaster

The Puppetmaster

Hsimeng jensheng (original title)

1993 / Taiwan / 141m / Col / Biography, Drama
Tianlu Li, Giong Lim, Chung Lin, Ming Hwa Bai, Fue Choung Cheng, Hung Liou, Chen-Nan Tsai, Lai-Yin Yang
"Hou Hsiao-hsien's masterpiece about the childhood and early adulthood of octogenerian Taiwanese puppet master and actor Li Tien-lu… Hou's preference for filming entire scenes in long takes from fixed camera angles and for eschewing close-ups has never been as masterfully employed and modulated as it is here… The film alternates between re-created scenes from Li's life, Li speaking directly to the camera about his past, and extracts from his puppet and stage performances, creating a layered density in the narrative that does full justice to the complexity and poetry of Hou's investigation." - Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader
Selected by Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Kent Jones, Thom Andersen, Ain-Ling Wong.
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.


1957 / India / 146m / BW / Drama, Romance
Guru Dutt, Mala Sinha, Waheeda Rehman, Rehman, Johnny Walker, Kumkum, Leela Mishra, Shyam, Mehmood, Radheshyam
"Among the pantheon of great early Bollywood directors is the wonderful Guru Dutt, whose 1957 film Pyaasa marks a high point in pre-sixties era Hindi filmmaking… Pyaasa bridges the very best of the great classical era with the developing populism and themes which would define the more formulaic Bollywood films. In some ways, Dutt's film is as expressive and poetic as Ray's Aparajito (1957) or Parash Pathar (1958), and represents a sophisticated blend of music into the film's narrative (sung poems by the tortured protagonist) which today strike the viewer as inspired… This is a richly rewarding forgotten work from a director who died too young." - Richard Steiner, TCM
Selected by Nasreen Munni Kabir, Rachel Dwyer, Richard Corliss, Anurag Kashyap, Jos Oliver.
The Quiet Man

The Quiet Man

1952 / USA / 129m / Col / Comedy Drama, Romance
John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Victor McLaglen, Barry Fitzgerald, Ward Bond, Mildred Natwick, Arthur Shields, Jack MacGowran, Francis Ford, Eileen Crowe
"John Ford's 1952 Oscar winner is a tribute to an Ireland that exists only in the imaginations of songwriters and poets like Ford, a fairy green place where people really do say "faith and begorrah." John Wayne is an Irish-born American boxer who returns to his native village to (1) claim the family homestead, (2) win acceptance from the Abbey Players who populate the area, and (3) win the heart and hand—and dowry—of the local beauty, Maureen O'Hara, by winning over (and ultimately pummeling senseless) her hard-drinking brother, Victor McLaglen. A wonderful film, with a marvelous supporting cast headed by Barry Fitzgerald as Wayne's pixieish helper." - Don Druker, Chicago Reader
Selected by Amos Gitai, Albert Serra, Fernando Trueba, George A. Romero, Carlos Losilla.
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Quince Tree of the Sun

El Sol del membrillo (original title); Dream of Light (alternative title)

1992 / Spain / 133m / Col / Drama, Documentary
Antonio Lopez Garcia, Marina Moreno, Enrique Gran, Maria Lopez, Carmen Lopez, Elisa Ruiz, Jose Carretero, Amalia Aria, Lucia Munoz, Esperanza Parada
"Erice follows Antonio López García, considered by many to be Spain's greatest living painter, in his daily attempts to render the quince tree in his backyard as it appears in autumn's midday sun. By dwelling on the details, Erice makes Garcia's painstaking preparations surprisingly compelling, observing the artist as he surrounds the small tree with an elaborate web of strings and weights to keep his perspective fixed… What begins as a detailed, dramatic look at the artistic process slowly broadens its scope, as Garcia discards one attempt after another, chats with old friends and admiring visitors, and copes with inclement weather." - Keith Phipps, A.V. Club
Selected by Jaime Pena, Jorge García, José Luis Torres Leiva, Koen van Daele, Manuel Asín.
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Raging Bull

Top 100 Film Ranking 23 (23)

1980 / USA / 128m / BW / Biography, Sports Drama
Robert De Niro, Cathy Moriarty, Joe Pesci, Frank Vincent, Nicholas Colasanto, Theresa Saldana, Mario Gallo, Frank Adonis, Frank Topham, Lori Anne Flax
"This is the high-water mark of the Scorsese/De Niro partnership. De Niro plays the fanatically aggressive middleweight boxer, paranoid, driven and unhappy, who alienates everyone around him as he descends into self-loathing and loneliness. Joe Pesci and Cathy Moriarty are superb as his brother and wife. Its editor, Thelma Schoonmaker, established the movie as a classic example of her art, and the monochrome cinematography is superb. Unmissable." - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
Selected by Gareth Evans, Andrew Dominik, Andrew Kotting, Gavin Smith, Bruce Robinson.
Raiders of the Lost Ark

Raiders of the Lost Ark

1981 / USA / 115m / Col / Adventure, Action
Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman, Ronald Lacey, John Rhys-Davies, Denholm Elliott, Alfred Molina, Wolf Kahler, Anthony Higgins, Vic Tablian
"Released in 1981, Raiders Of The Lost Ark puts Ford in search of the Ark of the Covenant, racing against Nazis who would use it for their own purposes, and bulldozing through one action-packed episode after another. Much of the blame for the all-action-all-the-time approach of current summer blockbusters can be placed on Raiders, but if any of the copycats had Spielberg's command of storytelling and visual gags, it wouldn't matter. Raiders finds the right balance between reverence and wit, and the sight of Ford outrunning that giant boulder thrills as much on the 14th viewing as the first." - Keith Phipps, A.V. Club
Selected by Matthew Vaughn, Edgar Wright, Naman Ramachandran, Patrick Fahy, Xavier Pérez.

Top 25 Musicals
1. Singin' in the Rain (Stanley Donen & Gene Kelly, 1952)
2. The Wizard of Oz (Victor Fleming, 1939)
3. The Red Shoes (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1948)
4. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (Jacques Demy, 1964)
5. Meet Me in St. Louis (Vincente Minnelli, 1944)
6. The Band Wagon (Vincente Minnelli, 1953)
7. Cabaret (Bob Fosse, 1972)
8. West Side Story (Robert Wise & Jerome Robbins, 1961)
9. The Young Girls of Rochefort (Jacques Demy, 1967)
10. A Star is Born (George Cukor, 1954)
11. French Cancan (Jean Renoir, 1955)
12. The Sound of Music (Robert Wise, 1965)
13. All That Jazz (Bob Fosse, 1979)
14. Top Hat (Mark Sandrich, 1935)
15. A Hard Day's Night (Richard Lester, 1964)
16. Love Me Tonight (Rouben Mamoulian, 1932)
17. Dancer in the Dark (Lars von Trier, 2000)
18. Moulin Rouge! (Baz Luhrmann, 2001)
19. The Blues Brothers (John Landis, 1980)
20. Le Million (René Clair, 1931)
21. An American in Paris (Vincente Minnelli, 1951)
22. 42nd Street (Lloyd Bacon, 1933)
23. New York, New York (Martin Scorsese, 1977)
24. On the Town (Stanley Donen & /Gene Kelly, 1949)
25. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Howard Hawks, 1953)

Raise the Red Lantern

Raise the Red Lantern

Da hong deng long gao gao gua (original title)

1991 / Hong Kong / 125m / Col / Period Film, Marriage Drama
Gong Li, Ma Jingwu, He Caifei, Cao Cuifeng, Jin Shuyuan, Kong Lin, Ding Weimin, Cui Zhihgang, Chu Xiao, Cao Zhengyin
"Raise the Red Lantern, a magnificent film that confirms Zhang as a world-class director… The setting is northern China in the Twenties. The teenage Songlian (Gong Li) marries the fiftyish Chen (Ma Jingwu), a rich and ruthless man who already has three wives. Each night, servants raise a red lantern in front of the door of the wife whom the master decides to reward with his sexual favors. The struggle among the wives for power, or at least the appearance of it, allows Zhang to suggest disturbing links between past and present. Gong Li delivers a performance of exquisite expressiveness that, like the film itself, is unnerving in its emotional nakedness." - Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
Selected by Girish Kasaravalli, Jerry Schatzberg, Keren Yedaya, Khalo Matabane, Richard Woolley.
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, Joe Swanberg.


1985 / France-Japan / 161m / Col / Historical Epic, Samurai Film
Tatsuya Nakadai, Akira Terao, Jinpachi Nezu, Daisuke Ryu, Mieko Harada, Yoshiko Miyazaki, Takashi Nomura, Hisashi Igawa, Peter, Masayuki Yui
"Ran is as close to perfect as filmmaking gets. List any element -- from concept through cinematography, battle action, editing, acting, sound, music, costumes or whatever, right down to makeup -- and Kurosawa's commitment is total. Ran is proof that the spirit can be captured on film. Kurosawa's was. This epic retelling of Shakespeare's King Lear is set in feudal Japan, with the overlord Hidetora as the Lear figure, who starts with everything and ends with nothing… In Ran, the horrors of life are transformed by art into beauty. It is finally so moving that the only appropriate response is silence." - Bob Graham, San Francisco Chronicle
Selected by Abel Ferrara, Fernando Meirelles, Krzysztof Zanussi, James Gray, Faouzi Bensaïdi.


Top 100 Film Ranking 20 (21) Orange Up-Arrow

1950 / Japan / 88m / BW / Period Film, Crime Drama
Toshiro Mifune, Machiko Kyo, Masayuki Mori, Takashi Shimura, Minoru Chiaki, Noriko Honma, Kichijiro Ueda, Daisuke Kato, Scinobu Hascimoto
"A riveting psychological thriller that investigates the nature of truth and the meaning of justice, Rashomon is widely considered one of the greatest films ever made. Four people give different accounts of a man’s murder and the rape of his wife, which director Akira Kurosawa presents with striking imagery and an ingenious use of flashbacks. This eloquent masterwork and international sensation revolutionized film language and introduced Japanese cinema—and a commanding new star by the name of Toshiro Mifune—to the Western world." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Krzysztof Zanussi, Adoor Gopalakrishnan, Asghar Farhadi, Jonathan Glazer, Roy Andersson.
Rear Window

Rear Window

Top 100 Film Ranking 41 (41)

1954 / USA / 112m / Col / Thriller, Romantic Mystery
James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Wendell Corey, Thelma Ritter, Raymond Burr, Judith Evelyn, Ross Bagdasarian, Georgine Darcy, Sara Berner, Frank Cady
"Hitchcock proves again to be "The Master Of Suspense," but in Rear Window—and much of his other work, for that matter—he's the master of a lot more than that. Witness, for example, his suggestive use of offscreen space to piece together a murder without showing a single violent act. Or the subtle erotic charge that finally hits Stewart once Kelly leaves the apartment and crosses over into his voyeuristic gaze. Or the film's witty commentary on the fundamental oddities of human behavior. In its perfect fusion of popular entertainment and high art, Rear Window ranks among Hitchcock's best." - Scott Tobias, A.V. Club
Selected by James Naremore, Jonathan Rosenbaum, Jørgen Leth, Kristin Thompson, Susanne Bier.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.


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.
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 Robert De Niro, Dennis Hopper, Erik Syngle, Francisco D'Intino, Susana Uchôa Itiberê.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
The Reckless Moment

The Reckless Moment

1949 / USA / 82m / BW / Crime Drama, Film Noir
James Mason, Joan Bennett, Geraldine Brooks, Henry O'Neill, Shepperd Strudwick, David Blair, Roy Roberts, Jessie Arnold, Jack Baker, Pat Barton
"Just as some critics favor Lang's midcentury American noirs over his famous German silent masterpieces, I prefer Ophuls' moment-in-the-sun Hollywood output, particularly his twin femme-noir home-runs of 1949, Caught and The Reckless Moment. The latter of the two may be, in fact, one of its decade's greatest forgotten movies, a stock melodramatic programmer (adapted from a Ladies Home Journal story, yet) that is reconceived and crafted with such deftness and attention to emotional detail that it shutters scores of contemporaneous noirs and dramas out of the memory." - Michael Atkinson, TCM
Selected by Keith Uhlich, Todd Haynes, Robin Wood, Scott McGehee, David Siegel.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
The Red Balloon

The Red Balloon

Le Ballon rouge (original title)

1956 / France / 34m / Col / Children's/Family, Family-Oriented Adventure
Pascal Lamorisse, Georges Sellier, Vladimir Popov, Paul Perey, Rene Marion, Sabine Lamorisse, Michel Pezin, Renaud, David Sechan
"Albert Lamorisse’s exquisite The Red Balloon remains one of the most beloved children’s films of all time. In this deceptively simple, nearly wordless tale, a young boy discovers a stray balloon, which seems to have a mind of its own, on the streets of Paris. The two become inseparable, yet the world’s harsh realities finally interfere. With its glorious palette and allegorical purity, the Academy Award–winning The Red Balloon has enchanted movie lovers, young and old, for generations." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Miranda July, Ray Lawrence, Sukhdev Sandhu, Michel Gondry, Walter Carvalho.
Red Beard

Red Beard

Akahige (original title)

1965 / Japan / 185m / BW / Period Film, Medical Drama
Toshiro Mifune, Yuzo Kayama, Yoshio Tsuchiya, Tsutomu Yamazaki, Reiko Dan, Miyuki Kuwano, Kyoko Kagawa, Tatsuyoshi Ehara, Teruma Niki, Takashi Shimura
"A testament to the goodness of humankind, Akira Kurosawa’s Red Beard chronicles the tumultuous relationship between an arrogant young doctor and a compassionate clinic director. Toshiro Mifune, in his last role for Kurosawa, gives a powerhouse performance as the dignified yet empathic director who guides his pupil to maturity, teaching the embittered intern to appreciate the lives of his destitute patients. Perfectly capturing the look and feel of 19th-century Japan, Kurosawa weaves a fascinating tapestry of time, place, and emotion." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Kim Young-Jin, Alexander Payne, Steven Seagal, Chris Wisner, Jean-Pierre Dardenne.
The Red Circle

The Red Circle

Le Cercle rouge (original title)

1970 / France-Italy / 140m / Col / Crime Thriller, Post-Noir (Modern Noir)
Alain Delon, Andre Bourvil, Yves Montand, Francois Perier, Gian Maria Volonte, Andre Eykan, Pierre Collet, Paul Crauchet, Paul Amiot, Jean-Pierre Posier
"Alain Delon plays a master thief, fresh out of prison, who crosses paths with a notorious escapee (Volonté) and an alcoholic ex-cop (Montand). The unlikely trio plot a heist, against impossible odds, until a relentless inspector and their own pasts seal their fates. Jean-Pierre Melville’s Le cercle rouge combines honorable antiheroes, coolly atmospheric cinematography, and breathtaking set pieces to create a masterpiece of crime cinema." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Robin Buss, Patrick Keiller, Pedro Almodóvar, Cristina Álvarez López, Ho Yuhang.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
Red Desert

Red Desert

Il Deserto rosso (original title)

1964 / Italy-France / 118m / Col / Drama, Psychological Drama
Monica Vitti, Richard Harris, Carlo Chionetti, Xenia Valderi, Rita Renoir, Lili Rheims, Aldo Grotti, Valerio Bartoleschi, Emanuela Paola Carboni, Bruno Borghi
"This provocative look at the spiritual desolation of the technological age—about a disaffected woman, brilliantly portrayed by Antonioni muse Monica Vitti, wandering through a bleak industrial landscape beset by power plants and environmental toxins, and tentatively flirting with her husband’s coworker, played by Richard Harris—continues to keep viewers spellbound. With one startling, painterly composition after another—of abandoned fishing cottages, electrical towers, looming docked ships—Red Desert creates a nearly apocalyptic image of its time, and confirms Antonioni as cinema’s preeminent poet of the modern age." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Wang Bing, Jia Zhangke, Pedro Almodóvar, Marc Forster, Enno Patalas.
Red River

Red River

1948 / USA / 133m / BW / Western, Epic Western
John Wayne, Montgomery Clift, Walter Brennan, Joanne Dru, Coleen Gray, John Ireland, Noah Beery Jr., Paul Fix, Harry Carey Jr., Harry Carey
"Hawks' leisurely adaptation of Borden Chase's story about the establishing of the Chisholm Trail by Wayne and Clift's cattle train is a sheer delight that works on many levels. Firstly, it's an examination of Wayne's heroic image, here shown to be needlessly authoritarian and stubborn… Secondly, it's yet another variation on Hawks' perennial concern with the theme of self-respect and professionalism… Finally, it's an intimate epic celebrating the determination to establish civilisation in the wilderness… Immaculately shot by Russell Harlan, perfectly performed by a host of Hawks regulars, and shot through with dark comedy, it's probably the finest Western of the '40s." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Lawrence Kasdan, Rudolf Thome, Wes Craven, Violeta Kovacsics, Fred Camper.
The Red Shoes

The Red Shoes

1948 / UK / 133m / Col / Romantic Drama, Musical Drama
Anton Walbrook, Moira Shearer, Marius Goring, Leonide Massine, Robert Helpmann, Albert Basserman, Esmond Knight, Ludmilla Tcherina, Frederick Ashton, Jean Short
"The Red Shoes, the singular fantasia from Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, is cinema’s quintessential backstage drama, as well as one of the most glorious Technicolor feasts ever concocted for the screen. Moira Shearer is a rising star ballerina torn between an idealistic composer and a ruthless impresario intent on perfection. Featuring outstanding performances, blazingly beautiful cinematography by Jack Cardiff, Oscar-winning sets and music, and an unforgettable, hallucinatory central dance sequence, this beloved classic, now dazzlingly restored, stands as an enthralling tribute to the life of the artist." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by John McNaughton, Pam Cook, David Ehrenstein, Ken Russell, Martin Scorsese.
Red Sorghum

Red Sorghum

Hong gao liang (original title)

1987 / China / 91m / Col / Rural Drama, Marriage Drama
Gong Li, Jiang Wen, Teng Rijun, Liu Ji, Cui Cun-hua, Qian Ming, Zhang Yimou
"The stuff of legend, Zhang Yimou's film satisfies both as straight folk tale and as a subversive tribute to the vitality and endurance of Chinese peasant culture… As the film develops, the tone shifts from light to dark, humour giving way to horror and sacrifice with the arrival of Japanese forces. Formerly a cameraman, Zhang fills the 'Scope screen with rich, sensuous images that illuminate and celebrate peasant life (waving sorghum fields, an eclipse of the sun), and uses actors, music and colour in a deeply expressive way. This, his debut as a director, confirms him as one of the finest and most versatile of China's 'Fifth Generation' film-makers." - Wally Hammond, Time Out
Selected by Alexey Medvedev, Han Jie, Yiwen Chen, Wei Te-Sheng, Yang Shupeng.


1981 / USA / 200m / Col / Epic, Historical Film
Warren Beatty, Diane Keaton, Edward Herrmann, Jerzy Kosinksi, Jack Nicholson, Paul Sorvino, Maureen Stapleton, Nicolas Coster, M. Emmet Walsh, Gene Hackman
"Warren Beatty's shapely 1981 epic, based on the life of radical journalist John Reed, is a stunningly successful application of a novelistic aesthetic—a film that makes full and thoughtful use of its three-and-a-half-hour length to develop characters, ideas, and motifs with a depth seldom seen in movies. Though it deals with historical events—World War I, the growth of the workers' movement in America, the Russian Revolution—history is not used simply as a backdrop; rather, Beatty focuses on the interdependence of personal choices and historical developments, mingling ideology and emotion in a very human whole." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Neil LaBute, Antonia Quirke, James Toback, Jack Lechner, Griffin Dunne.
La Region centrale

La Région centrale

1971 / Canada / 180m / Col / Avant-garde-Experimental, Drama
"One of the classics of conceptual filmmaking, Michael Snow's three-hour film is a landscape study with a vengeance: a camera, equipped with a remote-controlled zooming and panning device, was set up in a remote area in northern Canada, and made to go through every possible permutation of camera angle and focal length as it probed the surrounding wilderness. The resulting footage finds a strange beauty in the constant tension between the mechanical, mathematically determined operations of the camera and the chance transformations of the landscape as it's raked by the light of the passing day." - Dave Kehr, Chicago Reader
Selected by Tom Gunning, Michelangelo Frammartino, Peter Rist, Andréa Picard, José Luis Torres Leiva.


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.
Requiem for a Dream

Requiem for a Dream

2000 / USA / 100m / Col / Addiction Drama, Psychological Drama
Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly, Marlon Wayans, Christopher McDonald, Louise Lasser, Keith David, Sean Gullette, Dylan Baker, Hubert Selby Jr.
"Orson Welles is said to have examined Shakespeare plays with the connoisseurship of a huntsman picking up a rifle. The energy, consistency and utter mastery of technique that Darren Aronofsky shows in his adaptation of Requiem for a Dream reminded me of that legendary confidence. His agonising and unflinchingly grim portrait of drug abuse is a formally pleasing piece of work… With spareness and unremitting cruelty, Aronofsky shows his characters' accelerated slide to destruction. It's an almost unbearably bleak view and its lack of any obvious redemptive moral message will revolt some. But without it, Aronofsky's film is chilling, and diamond-hard." - Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
Selected by Patricia Rozema, Pavel Bednarik, Simon Rumley, Yiwen Chen, David Ondaatje.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
Reservoir Dogs

Reservoir Dogs

1992 / USA / 99m / Col / Crime Thriller, Gangster Film
Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Christopher Penn, Steve Buscemi, Lawrence Tierney, Randy Brooks, Kirk Baltz, Edward Bunker, Quentin Tarantino
"Brilliantly acted by a high-testosterone cast that includes Harvey Keitel, Steve Buscemi, Chris Penn, and the charismatic British actor Tim Roth, Reservoir Dogs is funny, thrilling, and so unabashedly violent it both shocks you and leaves you giddy at your own capacity for shock. At the same time, this is an ingeniously plotted 1950s-style heist picture: It's like John Huston's The Asphalt Jungle or Stanley Kubrick's The Killing remade by the Scorsese of Mean Streets." - Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly
Selected by Peter Farrelly, Li Shaohong, Constantin Popescu, Gareth Edwards, Matthew Vaughn.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.

Leading Cinematographers
(Most cinematography credits within the 1,000 Greatest Films)
15 - Raoul Coutard
12 - Sven Nykvist
9 - Tonino Delli Colli
8 - William Lubtchansky, Russell Metty, Vilmos Zsigmond, Roland Totheroh, Gordon Willis
7 - Asakazu Nakai, Sacha Vierny, Gianni Di Venanzo, Robert Burks, Nestor Almendros, Giuseppe Rotunno, Robby Müller, Kazuo Miyagawa
6 - Joseph Walker, Ghislain Cloquet, Takao Saito, Frederick Elmes, Eduard Tisse, Vittorio Storaro, Harold Rosson, Otello Martelli

The Return

The Return

Vozvrashchenie (original title)

2003 / Russia / 110m / Col / Psychological Drama, Coming-of-Age
Vladimir Garin, Ivan Dobronravov, Konstantin Lavronenko, Natalia Vdovina, Gailina Popova, Alexej Suknovalov, Lazarj Dubovik, Elizaveta Alexandrova, Ljubovj Kasakova, Andrej Sumin
"The Return is the stunning feature film debut of Andrey Zvyagintsev, a 39-year-old Russian director who here renews the grand tradition of Russian cinematic mysticism epitomized by Andrei Tarkovsky. With a story line at once enigmatic and psychologically acute, The Return draws on biblical motifs to tell a story of Vanya (Ivan Dobronravov) and Andrey (Vladimir Garin), adolescent brothers who have grown up in the care of their mother (Natalia Vdovina) in a small, depressed town, their father having disappeared sometime after Vanya's birth… Mr. Zvyagintsev creates a most moving tension between his archetypal themes and the bristling specificity of his characters. The film is at once highly naturalistic and dreamily abstract, playing out its mythic themes through vibrantly detailed characterizations (and remarkable performances by the entire cast)." - Dave Kehr, The New York Times
Selected by Joe Cornish, Hind Mezaina, Jamie Thraves, John Wrathall, Ali Ulvi Uyanik.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
Ride the High Country

Ride the High Country

1962 / USA / 94m / Col / Western, Revisionist Western
Randolph Scott, Joel McCrea, Ronald Starr, Mariette Hartley, R.G. Armstrong, James Drury, Edgar Buchanan, L.Q. Jones, Warren Oates, John Anderson
"Peckinpah's superb second film, a nostalgic lament for the West in its declining years… Affectionately funny as Scott and McCrea, once more hired and temporarily in harness, creak rheumatically while climbing off their horses, turn aside from the trail to bathe aching feet, and sport long woolly combinations for bed. But also achieving an almost biblical grandeur as the two oldtime lawmen, fallen upon hard times and suddenly realising that the world has left them behind, contrive not to fall from grace and self-respect when a tempting gold shipment comes between them. Truly magnificent camerawork from Lucien Ballard." - Tom Milne, Time Out
Selected by Alexander Payne, Makoto Shinozaki, David Edelstein, Edward Buscombe, Philip Kemp.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
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Du rififi chez les hommes (original title)

1955 / France / 115m / BW / Crime Thriller, Caper
Jean Servais, Carl Mohner, Robert Manuel, Jules Dassin, Marie Sabouret, Janine Darcey, Claude Sylvain, Pierre Grasset, Robert Hossein, Magali Noel
"After making such American noir classics as The Naked City and Brute Force, blacklisted director Jules Dassin went to Paris and embarked on his masterpiece: a twisting, turning tale of four ex-cons who hatch one last glorious heist in the City of Lights. At once naturalistic and expressionistic, this melange of suspense, brutality, and dark humor was an international hit and earned Dassin the Best Director prize at the Cannes Film Festival." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Akin Omotoso, Arnost Lustig, John Maclean, Ivan Passer, Gao Qunshu.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
The Right Stuff

The Right Stuff

1983 / USA / 193m / Col / Drama, Docudrama
Sam Shepard, Scott Glenn, Ed Harris, Dennis Quaid, Fred Ward, Barbara Hershey, Kim Stanley, Veronica Cartwright, Pamela Reed, Scott Paulin
"From the opening moments it is clear that we have the nearest modern equivalent to a Western: men of quiet virtue going skyward, leaving the tawdry world of log-rolling politicians behind. John Ford might have made it, and director Kaufman matches up to the master of this kind of poetic hero worship. Beginning with Chuck Yeager's breaking of the sound barrier in the late '40s, he uses the great test pilot as a counterpoint to the training and eventual missions of the seven astronauts chosen for America's first space programme." - Geoff Andrew, Time Out
Selected by Peter Segal, Tony Jones, Klaus Härö, Jordan Hoffman, Michel Boujut.
Rio Bravo

Rio Bravo

Top 100 Film Ranking 54 (62) Orange Up-Arrow

1959 / USA / 141m / Col / Western, Buddy Film
John Wayne, Dean Martin, Angie Dickinson, Ricky Nelson, Walter Brennan, Ward Bond, Claude Akins, John Russell, Bob Steele, Harry Carey Jr.
"To watch Rio Bravo is to see a master craftsman at work. The film is seamless. There is not a shot that is wrong. It is uncommonly absorbing, and the 141-minute running time flows past like running water. It contains one of John Wayne’s best performances. It has surprisingly warm romantic chemistry between Wayne and Angie Dickinson. Dean Martin is touching. Ricky Nelson, then a rival of Elvis’ and with a pompadour that would have been laughed out of the Old West, improbably works in the role of a kid gunslinger. Old Walter Brennan, as the peg-legged deputy, provides comic support that never oversteps." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Kent Jones, Edward Buscombe, Laurence Kardish, Pablo Stoll, Rudolf Thome.
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.
The River (1951)

The River

1951 / France-India-USA / 99m / Col / Drama, Romantic Drama
Patricia Walters, Radha, Adrienne Corri, Nora Swinburne, Esmond Knight, Arthur Shields, Suprova Mukerjee, Thomas E. Breen, Sahjan Singh, Richard Foster
"Director Jean Renoir’s entrancing first color feature—shot entirely on location in India—is a visual tour de force. Based on the novel by Rumer Godden, the film eloquently contrasts the growing pains of three young women with the immutability of the holy Bengal River, around which their daily lives unfold. Enriched by Renoir’s subtle understanding and appreciation for India and its people, The River gracefully explores the fragile connections between transitory emotions and everlasting creation." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Adriano Aprà, Bernard Eisenschitz, Joseph McBride, Miguel Gomes, Miguel Marías.
The River (1997)

The River

He liu (original title)

1997 / Taiwan / 115m / Col / Drama, Family Drama
Chao-Jung Chen, Shiang-chyi Chen, Ann Hui, Kang-Sheng Lee, Shiao-Lin Lu, Yi-Ching Lu, Tien Miao, Kuei-Mei Yang
"As a simple tale of family dysfunction, no one should be congratulated for knowing where it will wind up, even though that inevitability carries with it a distinctly unsettling sense of dread. But what makes the film so mesmerizing is Tsai's command over the vagaries of texture and tone: Through long takes, deliberately somnolent performances, and the careful placement of characters within the frame, he captures the intangible mood of modern alienation... The River is difficult and unpleasant at times, but as a somber metaphor for contaminated lives, it's masterful." - Scott Tobias, A.V. Club
Selected by Lisandro Alonso, David Pendleton, Nandini Ramnath, Sarah Turner, Lucas Stensland.


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, Corin Hardy, Adirley Queirós, Jemaine Clement.
Rocco and His Brothers

Rocco and His Brothers

Rocco e i suoi fratelli (original title)

1960 / Italy-France / 180m / BW / Family Drama, Urban Drama
Alain Delon, Renato Salvatori, Annie Girardot, Katina Paxinou, Roger Hanin, Paolo Stoppa, Suzy Delair, Claudia Cardinale, Spiros Focas, Claudia Mori
"The word "operatic" is often overused, but no other would apply to Rocco and His Brothers. It is a combination that should not work, but does, between operatic melodrama and seamy social realism, which at no point in its 177-minute running time seem to clash, although they should. We buy the whole overwrought package, the quiet truth, the flamboyant excess, even the undercurrent of homoeroticism that Visconti never quite reconciles. The excitement of the film is that so much is happening, in so many different ways, all struggling to find a fusion." - Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
Selected by Julian Graffy, Arturo Ripstein, Vladimir Carvalho, Ramin Bahrani, Alan Pauls.


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, M. Night Shyamalan, Ringo Lam, Anurag Mehta, Yojira Takita.
The Rocky Horror Picture Show

The Rocky Horror Picture Show

1975 / UK / 95m / Col / Horror Comedy, Rock Musical
Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, Barry Bostwick, Richard O'Brien, Jonathan Adams, Nell Campbell, Peter Hinwood, Meat Loaf, Patricia Quinn, Charles Gray
"The Rocky Horror Picture Show was, and to some extent remains, the ultimate cult film. After flopping in its first run in 1975, it was quickly revived as a midnight movie, attracting a dedicated group of followers who would attend, talk back to, and reenact the movie on weekends… A fast-paced pastiche of camp, science fiction, rock music, horror, and more camp… The plot is only semi-comprehensible, but the nearly non-stop musical numbers—brilliant conflations of glam-rock and showtunes—and transgressive sexual energy keep things moving. With its fairly extreme but somehow cuddly take on sexual fluidity, it's easy to see why the appeal of RHPS hasn't waned.” - Keith Phipps, A.V. Club
Selected by Karen Oughton, Albert Elduque, Kevin John, Mike White, Paul Lee.
Roman Holiday

Roman Holiday

1953 / USA / 119m / BW / Romance, Comedy
Audrey Hepburn, Gregory Peck, Eddie Albert, Hartley Power, Tullio Carminati, Harcourt Williams, Laura Solari, Margaret Rawlings, Paolo Carlini, Claudio Ermelli
"With Audrey Hepburn at her most appealing, Gregory Peck at his most charismatic, and Rome at its most photogenic, Roman Holiday remains one of the most popular romances that has ever skipped across the screen. Aside from being an enormously enjoyable romp, the film is most notable for two reasons. The first is Hepburn, featured here in her first starring role in a Hollywood film… The second reason for the film's importance is its location… Director William Wyler's use of Rome is one of the best examples of how a location can become a leading character in a film." - Rebecca Flint Marx, All Movie
Selected by Keith Griffiths, Andrew O'Hehir, P.K. Nair, Shu Ming, William Hall.
Rome, Open City

Rome, Open City

Roma, città aperta (original title); Open City (alternative title)

1945 / Italy / 105m / BW / War Drama, Resistance Film
Anna Magnani, Aldo Fabrizi, Marcello Pagliero, Vito Annichiarico, Nando Bruno, Harry Feist, Giovanna Galletti, Francesco Grandjacquet, Maria Michi, Eduardo Passarelli
"This was Roberto Rossellini’s revelation, a harrowing drama about the Nazi occupation of Rome and the brave few who struggled against it… Rome Open City is a shockingly authentic experience, conceived and directed amid the ruin of World War II, with immediacy in every frame. Marking a watershed moment in Italian cinema, this galvanic work garnered awards around the globe and left the beginnings of a new film movement in its wake." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Geoffrey Macnab, Nelson Pereira dos Santos, Laurence Kardish, Philippe Parreno, Allan Sekula.


1948 / USA / 80m / Col / Thriller, Psychological Thriller
James Stewart, John Dall, Farley Granger, Joan Chandler, Cedric Hardwicke, Constance Collier, Douglas Dick, Edith Evanson, Dick Hogan, Alfred Hitchcock
"Rope isn't Hitchcock's best film, but it's one of his most audacious. With this movie, the master of suspense turns a nail-biting setpiece into a full-length feature, and shows us the ugly flipside of the violent thrillers that made his name. Murder in the movies is usually more about motive than consequence. The bad guys have it coming, and killers are much more interesting before they start repenting their crimes. But Rope rejects that formula by taking inspiration from a real-life murder, a particularly cold-hearted one, and rubbernecking on its aftermath." - Pamela Hutchinson, The Guardian
Selected by José Mojica Marins, Will Brooker, Michaela Boland, Peter Wollen, Meng Jing Hui.
See also 1,000 Noir Films.
Rosemary's Baby

Rosemary's Baby

1968 / USA / 136m / Col / Occult Horror, Psychological Thriller
Mia Farrow, John Cassavetes, Ruth Gordon, Sidney Blackmer, Maurice Evans, Ralph Bellamy, Angela Dorian, Patsy Kelly, Elisha Cook Jr., Charles Grodin
"Horrifying and darkly comic, Rosemary’s Baby was Roman Polanski’s Hollywood debut. This wildly entertaining nightmare, faithfully adapted from Ira Levin’s best seller, stars a revelatory Mia Farrow as a young mother-to-be who grows increasingly suspicious that her overfriendly elderly neighbors (played by Sidney Blackmer and an Oscar-winning Ruth Gordon) and self-involved husband (John Cassavetes) are hatching a satanic plot against her and her baby. In the decades of occult cinema that Polanski’s ungodly masterpiece has spawned, it has never been outdone for sheer psychological terror." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Joe Dante, Ray Lawrence, Sam Mendes, Wes Anderson, Sean Durkin.


1999 / Belgium-France / 94m / Col / Drama, Coming-of-Age
Emilie Dequenne, Fabrizio Rongione, Anne Yernaux, Olivier Gourmet, Bernard Marbaix, Frederic Bodson, Florian Delain, Christiane Dorval, Mireille Bailly, Thomas Gollas
"The Belgian filmmaking team of brothers Luc and Jean-Pierre Dardenne turned heads with Rosetta, an intense vérité drama that closely follows a poor young woman struggling to hold on to a job to support herself and her alcoholic mother. It’s a swift and simple tale made revelatory by the raw, empathetic way in which the directors render Rosetta’s desperation, keeping the camera nearly perched on her shoulder throughout. Many have copied the Dardennes’ style, but few have equaled it. This ferocious film won big at Cannes, earning the Palme d’Or for the filmmakers and the best actress prize for the indomitable Émilie Dequenne." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Cyrus Frisch, Lizzie Francke, Pawel Pawlikowski, Andreas Dresen, Jan Distelmeyer.
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The Round-Up

Szegénylegények (original title)

1966 / 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.
The Royal Tenenbaums

The Royal Tenenbaums

2001 / USA / 109m / Col / Comedy Drama, Comedy of Manners
Gene Hackman, Anjelica Huston, Ben Stiller, Gwyneth Paltrow, Luke Wilson, Owen Wilson, Danny Glover, Bill Murray, Seymour Cassel, Kumar Pallana
"Royal Tenenbaum (Hackman) and his wife, Etheline (Huston), had three children and then they separated. Chas (Stiller) started buying real estate in his early teens… Margot (Paltrow) was a playwright and received a Braverman Grant of $50,000 in the ninth grade. Richie (Luke Wilson) was a junior champion tennis player… Virtually all memory of the brilliance of the young Tenenbaums was subsequently erased by two decades of betrayal, failure, and disaster. The Royal Tenenbaums is a hilarious, touching, and brilliantly stylized study of melancholy and redemption from Wes Anderson." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Hind Mezaina, Jan Distelmeyer, Laurie Anderson, Atom Burke, Cameron Crowe.
See also The 21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films.
Ruggles of Red Gap

Ruggles of Red Gap

1935 / USA / 92m / BW / Comedy of Manners, Screwball Comedy
Charles Laughton, Mary Boland, Charlie Ruggles, ZaSu Pitts, Roland Young, Leila Hyams, Maude Eburne, Lucien Littlefield, Leota Lorraine, James Burke
"Shockingly modern and the most politically enlightened (and enlightening) comedy of the 1930s, Leo McCarey’s winning quasi-Western is a model of Hollywood broad strokes coalescing into a sophisticated whole… With the egalitarian warmth of Jean Renoir (himself a huge fan of the film), director McCarey spoofs stereotypes while investing them with knowing asides. The only characters singled out for scorn are those who would reinforce class divisions; delightfully, one of them literally gets his ass kicked." - Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out New York
Selected by Todd McCarthy, Louis Skorecki, Dan Sallitt, Edward Norton, Robin Wood.

Leading Actors
(Most acting credits* within the 1,000 Greatest Films)
15 - Ward Bond
14 - Robert De Niro
11 - John Wayne
10 - Harry Dean Stanton, Daisuke Kato, Jean-Pierre Léaud
9 - Orson Welles, James Stewart, Takashi Shimura, Chishu Ryu, Buster Keaton, Gene Hackman, Cary Grant, Harrison Ford, Jean Daste, Joseph Cotten, Charles Chaplin
8 - Michel Piccoli, Jack Nicholson, Harvey Keitel, Lance Henriksen, Alec Guinness, Jean Gabin

Leading Actresses
(Most acting credits* within the 1,000 Greatest Films)
8 - Haruko Sugimura
7- Diane Keaton, Jane Darwell, Lillian Gish, Jeanne Moreau
6 - Mia Farrow, Catherine Deneuve, Anna Karina, Claudia Cardinale, Juliette Binoche, Marlene Dietrich, Frances McDormand, Alida Valli, Ingrid Thulin, Julianne Moore, Kyoko Kagawa, Gong Li, Anna Lee, Sigourney Weaver

*excluding voice/narration credits

The Rules of the Game

The Rules of the Game

La Règle du jeu (original title)
Top 10 Film Ranking 4 (4)

1939 / France / 113m / BW / Comedy Drama, Ensemble Film
Marcel Dalio, Nora Gregor, Jean Renoir, Roland Toutain, Mila Parely, Gaston Modot, Julien Carette, Paulette Dubost, Pierre Magnier, Odette Talazac
"Renoir's brilliant social comedy is epitomised by the phrase 'everyone has their reasons'… The film effects audacious slides from melodrama into farce, from realism into fantasy, and from comedy into tragedy. Romantic intrigues, social rivalries, and human foibles are all observed with an unblinking eye that nevertheless refuses to judge… Embracing every level of French society, from the aristocratic hosts to a poacher turned servant, the film presents a hilarious yet melancholic picture of a nation riven by petty class distinctions." - Nigel Floyd, Time Out
Selected by Amy Taubin, Geoffrey Macnab, Andrei Plakhov, Carlos F. Heredero, Charles Barr.


1998 / USA / 93m / Col / Comedy Drama, Coming-of-Age
Bill Murray, Olivia Williams, Jason Schwartzman, Seymour Cassel, Brian Cox, Mason Gamble, Sara Tanaka, Stephen McCole, Luke Wilson, Dipak Pallana
"The dazzling sophomore film from Wes Anderson is equal parts coming-of-age story, French New Wave homage, and screwball comedy. Tenth grader Max Fischer (Schwartzman) is Rushmore Academy’s most extracurricular student—and its least scholarly. He faces expulsion and enters into unlikely friendships with both a lovely first-grade teacher (Williams) and a melancholy self-made millionaire (Murray, in an award-winning performance). Set to a soundtrack of classic British Invasion tunes, Rushmore defies categorization, capturing the pain and exuberance of adolescence with wit, emotional depth, and cinematic panache." - The Criterion Collection
Selected by Heather Graham, William H. Macy, Jemaine Clement, Todd Gilchrist, Félix Viscarret.
IMDB / No votes in the 2012 Sight & Sound Poll / Amazon
Russian Ark

Russian Ark

Russkiy kovcheg (original title)

2002 / Russia-Germany-Japan-Canada-Finland-Denmark / 96m / Col / Avant-garde-Experimental, Essay Film
Sergei Dontsov, Mariya Kuznetsova, Leonid Mozgovoy, David Giorgobiani, Aleksandr Chaban, Maxim Sergeyev, Anna Aleksakhina, Natalia Nikulenko, Vladimir Baranov, Boris Smolkin
"Russian Ark is a magnificent conjuring act, an eerie historical mirage evoked in a single sweeping wave of the hand by Alexander Sokurov. The 96-minute film, shot in high-definition video in the Hermitage at St. Petersburg, consists of one continuous, uninterrupted take. Thanks to recent technological innovation, it is the longest unbroken shot in the history of film… Mr. Sokurov, who has always been drawn to historical subjects, has said that he wanted to capture "the flow of time" in a pure cinematic language that suggests "a single breath." And that's what Russian Ark accomplishes." - Stephen Holden, The New York Times
Selected by Pere Portabella, Ronald Bergan, Stuart Klawans, Mark Cousins, Goutam Ghose.