Top 10 criterion titles (as of may 2017)

by Movie_Maineiac

Created 05/08/17

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  • 10.
    Che is a great film which combines beautiful cinematography from the films director Steven Soderbergh (Oceans trilogy, Traffic, & Sex Lies and Videotapes), and one of my favorite actors in the lead role of Guérilla fighter Che Guevara. Del Toro's performance adds to this films gritty feel, and includes a much more human like depiction of Guevara compared to Gael Garcia Bernal's performance in the film The Motorcycle Diaries, which is much less a political war drama, and more of an adventure which includes comedic elements. The brutal depiction of war also adds to this film, and implements many aspects of Guérilla warfare, and having the setting of the Cuban jungle, and political settings in Cuba. The only downfall of this two part epic is its over four and a half hour runtime, and the lack of supplements for a forty dollar release, therefore this is my pick for number ten.

  • 9.
    Paul Thomas Anderson's 2002 film Punch Drunk Love is a great black comedy which uses Adam Sandler's rarely utilized dramatic talent yet still manages to add in comedic moments which evoke thoughts of his early comedic efforts. Emily Watson also provides a great performance which balances Adam Sandler's performance very well. The plot is also strong due to great dialog among characters, and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman's performance as a sex phone line manager, and mattress store owner, who goes after Adam Sandler's character due to a refusal of extra money. This film is a different offering compared to Paul Thomas Anderson's other works (There Will Be Blood, Boogie Nights, and Inherent Vice) but is still an interesting work and deserves to be on this list.

  • 8.
    Peter Bogdanovich's 1971 effort The Last Picture Show, which stars Jeff Bridges, Cybil Shepard, and Timothy Bottoms. Which explores the lives of teens in a town in texas which is dying both economically and Culturally. Jeff bridges performance is very realistic and doesn't feel as if it's in a movie, but in total the cast have great performances that are realistic and represent towns like this in the real world, and is realistic enough to be like a documentary about a small town and the adolescent citizens. This film also beautifully represents the era of American film making characterized as the American New Wave which includes such classics as Easy Rider or Raging Bull. The Last Picture Show also is part of the film production company BBS which only ran from the mid sixties to the early seventies making films such as Easy Rider, Five Easy Pieces, Head, and The King Of Martin Gardens.

  • 7.
    Nobuhiko Obayashi's house or 'Hausu is an amazing almost psychedelic experiance which combines aspects of main stream haunted house films, and adds fun and creative scares and kills to captivate the viewer. Due to this films late 1970s release the special effects are laughable for today's standards but are still fun including a scene in which a poltergeist embodies a piano which lures a girl inside and ends up devouring her. This film isn't a traditionally scary film but is very fun to watch with friends or at the IFC theater where I first saw it. The only reasons it isn't higher is the short runtime and subpar special effects, therefore it is at my number seven spot

  • 6.
    Jean-Pierre Melville's Léon Morin, Priest is a simplistic yet profound look at a Nazi occupied france and the people which live in this small town the film is set in. Jean-Paul Belmondo gives a great performance as a priest who is in a close relationship with a middle aged single mother played by Emanuelle Riva. This film is also a different type of work from Jean-Pierre Melville who also directed french film noirs such as Le cercle rouge, Le Samouraï, and les doulos. Though this film has a simplistic narrative it show Emanuelle Riva's character in love which Jean-Paul Belmondo's priest very well and is able to keep the viewer captivated while also implementing a small narrative of the war which is going on in the background. This film is also part of what is called the french new wave a time which was saturated with post war dramas and films inspired by american film noir. The reasons this isn't higher is the simplistic plot (though interesting, it has been done before) and the eighty nine minute runtime.

  • 5.
    Paolo Sorrentino's The Great Beauty (Le Grande Belezza) is a great film which really is a great beauty. Some would say that Rome itself is a character in this film and I would completely agree, through showing different quarters of the city and various landmarks such as the colosseum and the Forum, which add to the films personality. Toni Servillo's character Jeb is very simplistic but like in his role in Il Divo he is able to successfully make a good performance. The films beauty does sometime overshadow the story beneath of a middle aged journalist trying to stay relevant in social status and in his old age. The problems though small do put this lower, the first being the overshadowed story which is covered by beautiful scenery which distracts the viewer from what is going on, and lastly the various flash backs which aren't explained as well as they should be, therefore it is my pick for number five.

  • 4.
    Richard Lester's A Hard Day's Night is the perfect example of what a film about a band should be, fun, filled with music, and good cinematography. This film is almost like a ninety minute music video but is done exquisitely, the story doesn't overshadow the music which is exactly what a beatles movie should be, and the four beatles though not greta actors are in it. The acting of Paul, John, George, and Ringo is cheesy yet good, since they aren't trained actors you expect them to be musicians, and that is what they are. This film includes all of my favorite tracks from the films title album, and implements them well. This film knows what it is and doesn't over step its boundaries by adding a complicated story, and instead almost completely ditchs a narrative. The cinematography is great as it is well done without any fast camera turns, and it implements wide shots such as the one on the poster very well. Overall the only reasons for it not being higher is the fact that it is slightly out dated but is still fun to watch, therefore it is my number four pick.

  • 3.
    David Cronenberg's Scanners is an eighties special effects masterpiece, the eighties style mixed with complex sci-fi plots is one of my favorite films due to many scenes of head exploding and laughably bad acting, with acception to Patrick Mcgoohan's role as Dr. Paul Ruth, who is destined to find the scanners (humans with special telekinetic powers) and kill them. The plot alone makes it a film that fans of schlocky horror and sci-fi should definitely see. The low budget also has the filmmakers utilize practical effects apposed to big Hollywood digital or animatronic effects. One such example is the now famous head explosion, which I frequently use in daily life to emphasize the phrase "Mind Blown". Overall this film is a sci-fi classic which I recommend if you are looking for a schlocky film with low budget special effects. This film is put at my number three spot.

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