Mastroianni’s midlife crisis is used to explore the complex interior life of man. Fellini’s masterpiece is effervescent, scary, and profound, transcending film itself.
Gregory La Cava
My Man Godfrey
A rich guy pretending to be a butler during the Great Depression, the great William Powell’s best part. Plus Carole Lombard. It’s a thoughtful riot.
In the early sixties, young Tom Courtenay knows he’s got to leave soul-killing Yorkshire and escape to London, where it’s all about to happen. Awesome Julie Christie tries to help, but can Tom get it together?
Fanny and Alexander: Theatrical Version
All the depth of Bergman’s earlier work plus youth and joy.
On the Waterfront
It was you, Charlie.
The Third Man
I’ve seen this picture a zillion times but always find something new to wonder about. Graham Greene, Carol Reed, Joseph Cotten, Orson Welles, Trevor Howard, Nazis, gangsters, Hitchcockian surrealism, innovative cinematography, a moody babe, Vienna, a zither for ear candy: it’s all here.
About the working life of Gilbert and Sullivan and what it takes to create a work of art. Jim Broadbent and the rest of the cast nail it down. Original, moving, but never sentimental.
Withnail and I
Among other things, the best film about the demise of the sixties counterculture. With iconic performances by Richard E. Grant, Richard Griffiths, and the unbelievable Ralph Brown. Stupidly funny.
Jonathan Lethem’s Top 10
Winner of a 2005 MacArthur Foundation Fellows Program genius grant, Jonathan Lethem is one of America's premier contemporary writers. His works include the novels The Fortress of Solitude and Motherless Brooklyn.
D. A. Pennebaker’s Top 10
Filmmaker D. A. Pennebaker (Dont Look Back, Monterey Pop, The War Room) and Chris Hegedus (The War Room, Startup.com), creative partners and husband and wife, offer these favorites.
Martin Scorsese’s Top 10
Martin Scorsese is an Academy Award–winning filmmaker who has directed more than twenty features, including The Last Temptation of Christ, available from the Criterion Collection.
Tracy Letts’s Top 10
Tracy Letts is an American playwright, screenwriter, and actor. He received the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for drama for August: Osage County and a Tony Award for Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
Brian Raftery’s Top 10
The year 1999 may be this culture critic’s favorite in Hollywood history (he just wrote a book on the subject!), but the Criterion films he holds most dear span a number of different eras.