The Current -

Anthony Bourdain’s Top10

American chef and art-film epicure Anthony Bourdain is chef at large at New York’s Brasserie les Halles; the author of ten books, including Kitchen Confidential and No Reservations; and the host of the Travel Channel’s Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations.


Photo courtesy of CNN

Jun 14, 2011
  • 1

    The Friends of Eddie Coyle

    Peter Yates

    This is a superb and uncompromising adaptation of George V. Higgins’s bleak masterpiece of low-level criminality—and possibly Robert Mitchum’s finest performance.

  • 2

    Eyes Without a Face

    Georges Franju

    Georges Franju’s eerie, face-transplant melodrama has stuck in my memory since the first time I saw it as a freaked-out kid on late-night TV.

  • 3

    The Battle of Algiers

    Gillo Pontecorvo

    The film that politicized me overnight. It’s riveting, multidimensional agitprop with a compelling documentary feel—still relevant and still the best of its kind.

  • 4

    Chungking Express

    Wong Kar-wai

    I could watch the work of Wong Kar-wai (and the brilliant cinematographer Christopher Doyle) all day long. I don’t have to understand what’s going on . . . I don’t care. Beautiful people, photographed beautifully. His films are the best, most romantic out there.

  • 5

    Kiss Me Deadly

    Robert Aldrich

    Easily the ugliest, greasiest, darkest, and most influential noir of its day. Love it.

  • 6

    Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

    Nagisa Oshima

    Nagisa Oshima will probably be remembered best for his groundbreaking and beautiful hardcore film In the Realm of the Senses, but this is a wonderful one. Breathtakingly shot, with a fantastic, memorable score, and great performances by David Bowie, Tom Conti, and “Beat” Takeshi Kitano.

  • 7

    Withnail and I

    Bruce Robinson

    One of the funniest goddamn films ever made—with an amazing performance by the brilliant Richard E. Grant.

  • 8

    Army of Shadows

    Jean-Pierre Melville

    A hard, unflinching look at what it was like to resist during wartime France. Personally, I prefer Bob le flambeur, but any Melville is good Melville. And this is very, very good.

  • 9

    House of Games

    David Mamet

    Mamet’s best film. Joe Mantegna’s best film. A suspense film about the big con. With a tight, delightfully convoluted script, great dialogue—and Ricky Jay!

  • 10

    Sullivan’s Travels

    Preston Sturges

    It’s simply one of the best films ever made—and it perfectly conveys everything you need to know about film. The scene of the convicts watching cartoons is a timeless, classic, and life-enriching moment.