Considered by many to be the finest British film ever made, The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, by Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, is a stirring masterpiece like no other.
1944 • 87 minutes • 1.37:1 • United States
Spine: #649 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
Suffused with dread and paranoia, this Fritz Lang adaptation of a novel by Graham Greene is a plunge into the eerie shadows of a world turned upside down by war.
1947 • 124 minutes • 1.33:1 • United States
Spine: #652 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus, iTunes
Charlie Chaplin plays shockingly against type in his most controversial film, a brilliant and bleak black comedy about money, marriage, and murder.
1953 • 89 minutes • 1.37:1 • Japan
Spine: #653 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus, iTunes
A winner of Academy Awards for best foreign-language film and best costume design, Gate of Hell is a visually sumptuous, psychologically penetrating work from Teinosuke Kinugasa.
1954 • 124 minutes • 1.33:1 • Japan
Spine: #386 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus
Under Kenji Mizoguchi’s dazzling direction, this classic Japanese story became one of cinema’s greatest masterpieces, a monumental, empathetic expression of human resilience in the face of evil.
1955 • 158 minutes • 1.66:1 • United Kingdom
Spine: #213 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Collector’s Sets, Hulu Plus, iTunes
In Richard III, director, producer, and star Laurence Olivier brings Shakespeare’s masterpiece of Machiavellian villainy to ravishing cinematic life
1956 • 101 minutes • 1.33:1 • France
Spine: #650 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus, iTunes
With the simplest of concepts and sparest of techniques, Robert Bresson made one of the most suspenseful jailbreak films of all time in A Man Escaped.
1956 • 101 minutes • 2.55:1 • United States
Spine: #656 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
A trio of exceptional performances by Glenn Ford, Ernest Borgnine, and Rod Steiger form the center of Jubal, an overlooked Hollywood treasure from genre master Delmer Daves.
1957 • 92 minutes • 1.85:1 • United States
Spine: #657 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
In this beautifully shot, psychologically complex western, Van Heflin is a mild-mannered cattle rancher who takes on the task of shepherding a captured outlaw (played with cucumber-cool charisma by Glenn Ford) to the train that will deliver him to prison.
Irvin S. Yeaworth Jr.
1958 • 82 minutes • 1.66:1 • United States
Spine: #91 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Hulu Plus
One of the great cult classics, The Blob melds ’50s schlock sci-fi and teen delinquency pics even as it transcends these genres with strong performances and ingenious special effects. The Blob helped launch the careers of superstud Steve McQueen and composer Burt Bacharach.
The fascinating result of a collaboration between filmmaker-anthropologist Jean Rouch and sociologist Edgar Morin, this vanguard work of what Morin would term cinéma verité is a brilliantly conceived and realized sociopolitical diagnosis of the early sixties in France.
1964 • 95 minutes • 1.33:1 • France
Spine: #174 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray, Collector’s Sets
Four years after Breathless, Jean-Luc Godard reimagined the gangster film even more radically with Band of Outsiders. In it, two restless young men (Sami Frey and Claude Brasseur) enlist the object of both of their fancies (Anna Karina) to help them commit a robbery—in her own home.
1969 • 110 minutes • 1.85:1 • United States
Spine: #658 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
It’s 1968, and the whole world is watching. With the U.S. in social upheaval, famed cinematographer Haskell Wexler decided to make a film about what the hell was going on. Medium Cool, his debut feature, plunges us into the moment.
1973 • 94 minutes • 1.85:1 • United States
Spine: #651 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
Badlands announced the arrival of a major talent: Terrence Malick. His impressionistic take on the notorious Charles Starkweather killing spree of the late 1950s uses a serial-killer narrative as a springboard for an oblique teenage romance.
1984 • 92 minutes • 1.78:1 • United States
Spine: #654 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
A quintessential cult film of the 1980s, Alex Cox’s singular sci-fi comedy stars the always captivating Harry Dean Stanton as a weathered repo man in a desolate Los Angeles, and Emilio Estevez as the nihilistic middle-class punk he takes under his wing.
1991 • 115 minutes • 1.78:1 • Canada
Spine: #220 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
In this adaptation of William S. Burroughs’s hallucinatory, once-thought-unfilmable novel Naked Lunch, directed by David Cronenberg, a part-time exterminator and full-time drug addict named Bill Lee (Peter Weller) plunges into the nightmarish Interzone.
Spine: #655 Editions: DVD, Blu-ray
A French comedy master whose films went unseen for decades as a result of legal tangles, director-actor Pierre Etaix is a treasure the cinematic world has rediscovered and embraced with relish.