1938 • 96 minutes • 1.33:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #3 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Collector’s Sets, iTunes
In Alfred Hitchcock’s most quick-witted and devilish comic thriller, a young woman finds herself drawn into a complex web of mystery and high adventure while traveling across Europe by train. The Lady Vanishes remains one of the master filmmaker’s purest delights.
Roy Ward Baker
1958 • 123 minutes • 1.66:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #7 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, iTunes
On April 14, 1912, just before midnight, the “unsinkable” Titanic struck an iceberg. In less than three hours, it had plunged to the bottom of the sea. This is cinema’s subtlest and best dramatization of this monumental twentieth-century catastrophe.
1971 • 100 minutes • 1.78:1 • Australia
Spine: #10 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus, iTunes
A young sister and brother are abandoned in the harsh Australian outback and must learn to cope in the natural world, without their usual comforts, in this hypnotic masterpiece from Nicolas Roeg.
1991 • 118 minutes • 1.85:1 • United States
Spine: #13 Edition: DVD
Anthony Hopkins’s Hannibal Lecter matches wits with Jodie Foster’s heroic FBI agent Clarice Starling in Jonathan Demme’s taut psychological thriller.
1964 • 90 minutes • 1.75:1 • United States
Spine: #18 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus
The setup is pure pulp: A former prostitute (a crackerjack Constance Towers) relocates to a buttoned-down suburb, determined to fit in with mainstream society.
1963 • 101 minutes • 1.75:1 • United States
Spine: #19 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus
Seeking a Pulitzer Prize, reporter Johnny Barrett (Peter Breck) has himself committed to a mental hospital to investigate a murder. As he closes in on the killer, insanity closes in on him. Sam Fuller’s Shock Corridor masterfully charts the uneasy terrain between sanity and madness.
1986 • 111 minutes • 1.75:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #20 Edition: DVD
Director Alex Cox balances a bleak evocation of star-crossed love with surreal humor and genuine tenderness in this portrait of the brief, intense attachment of Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious and his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen.
1988 • 115 minutes • 1.66:1 • United States
Spine: #21 Edition: DVD
Jeremy Irons gives a tour-de-force performance as identical twin gynecologists—suave Elliot and sensitive Beverly, bipolar sides of one personality—who descend into a whirlpool of sexual confusion, drugs, and madness in David Cronenberg’s chilling tale.
1955 • 100 minutes • 1.33:1 • United States
Spine: #22 Editions: DVD, Collector’s Sets, Hulu Plus, iTunes
In David Lean’s visually enchanting Summertime, Katharine Hepburn plays a lonely American spinster whose dream of romance finally becomes a bittersweet reality when she meets a handsome—but married—Italian man while vacationing in Venice.
1987 • 103 minutes • 1.66:1 • United States
Spine: #23 Edition: DVD
A grown-up superhero fantasy come to vivid, bloody life, Paul Verhoeven’s special effects-laden cult phenomenon features a resurrected hero (Peter Weller) in a new, supercharged cyborg body, struggling to reclaim his memory and avenge his own death.
1979 • 114 minutes • 1.77:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #26 Edition: DVD
Bob Hoskins, in his breakthrough film role, stars as a London racketeer fast losing control of his gangland empire; Helen Mirren shines as his classy moll.
1973 • 95 minutes • 2.35:1 • United States
Spine: #27 Edition: DVD
Maverick filmmaker Paul Morrissey’s Flesh for Frankenstein reevaluates the horror film, infusing it with satiric wit and sexuality. Morrissey’s tale of the mad Baron Frankenstein and his perverse creative urges was heavily edited upon initial release; this is the restored director’s cut.
1974 • 103 minutes • 1.85:1 • United States
Spine: #28 Edition: DVD
In Paul Morrissey’s brash mixture of humor, horror, and sex, Blood for Dracula, the infamous count searches Italy for virgin blood.
1975 • 107 minutes • 1.66:1 • Australia
Spine: #29 Editions: DVD, Hulu Plus
In Peter Weir’s lyrical, meditative 1975 masterpiece, a Valentine’s Day picnic at an ancient volcanic outcropping turns to disaster for the residents of Mrs. Appleyard’s school when a few young girls inexplicably vanish on Hanging Rock.
1946 • 118 minutes • 1.33:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #31 Editions: DVD, Collector’s Sets
One of the great translations of literature into film, David Lean’s Great Expectations brings Charles Dickens’s masterpiece to robust on-screen life.
1948 • 116 minutes • 1.33:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #32 Editions: DVD, Collector’s Sets, iTunes
An orphan wends his way from cruel apprenticeship to den of thieves in search of a true home in David Lean’s rendition of Dickens’s classic tale.
1922 • 79 minutes • 1.33:1 • United States
Spine: #33 Edition: DVD
Robert Flaherty’s classic film tells the story of Inuit hunter Nanook and his family as they struggle to survive in the harsh conditions of Canada’s Hudson Bay region.
1981 • 116 minutes • 1.85:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #37 Edition: DVD
In Terry Gilliam’s fantastic voyage through time and space, a young boy escapes his gadget-obsessed parents to join a band of time-traveling dwarves.
1998 • 153 minutes • 2.35:1 • United States
Spine: #40 Edition: DVD
Bruce Willis and an all-star cast of roughneck oil drillers blast off on a mission to save the planet in Michael Bay’s doomsday space epic.
1944 • 137 minutes • 1.33:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #41 Editions: DVD, Collector’s Sets, iTunes
This sumptuous Technicolor rendering of Shakespeare’s play features a thrilling re-creation of the battle of Agincourt, and Sir Laurence Olivier in his prime as director and actor.
1992 • 147 minutes • 1.33:1 • United States
Spine: #42 Editions: DVD, Hulu Plus
John Lurie knows absolutely nothing about fishing, but that doesn’t stop him from undertaking the adventure of a lifetime in Fishing with John. Featuring Jim Jarmusch, Willem Dafoe, and Tom Waits.
1963 • 90 minutes • 1.37:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #43 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Collector’s Sets, Hulu Plus
In the hands of the renowned experimental theater director Peter Brook, William Golding’s legendary novel about the primitivism lurking beneath civilization becomes a film as raw and ragged as the lost boys at its center.
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.
One of the best and most literate movies from the great days of horror, The Most Dangerous Game stars Leslie Banks as a big-game hunter with a taste for the world’s most exotic prey—his houseguests.
1985 • 142 minutes • 1.78:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #51 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
In the dystopian masterpiece Brazil, Jonathan Pryce plays a daydreaming everyman who finds himself caught in the soul-crushing gears of a nightmarish bureaucracy.