Top 10...Or 12

by stephen

Created 07/02/12

Edit List

For me, these are the ten-ish movies in my collection I'd rescue from a burning building should the need ever arise. Sure, there are other great ones (even better ones than these), but it's my list, not yours.

  • As far as I'm concerned, this is one of the best movies ever made. It perfectly captures the behavior of school age children, the best of youth, and the budding friendship between the two main characters. The movie is well paced and the two young leads carry it all. One of the hardest endings to take any time you see it. You won't soon forget this.

  • One of the best looking Blu Ray discs you'll come across. Malick's majestic brand of filmmaking melds surprisingly well with the war story he's telling. I could pretend it's about the dialogue, but we all know it isn't. This is a visual piece more than anything and it's a damn good one. The performances are all well done, but that's not what makes this a classic.

  • Everything that Bergman had touched on in his films up to this point can be seen in Fanny & Alexander. In many ways it's the culmination of all his work (which would make complete sense considering it was supposed to be his last). It's comical, dark, mystical, adult, and childish over the course of the film (or series). It's rich in detail and shines with the upgrade to Blu Ray.

  • Like Au revoir..., an ending that you're not going to forget any time soon. The grandfather of any current coming of age story. You get to see every side to Antoine and it's always entertaining.

  • A movie that will leave you speechless and depressed. Not enough can be said about Renee Falconetti's ability to tell the entire story with her face. There would be no need for dialogue if they had made it a few years later with sound. She gives one of the greatest performances in film history. It's a magnificent film that hangs entirely on her more than capable shoulders.

  • Stunning. Peter Lorre makes a fantastic lead. If only there had been more films for him to carry. He makes every parent's nightmare so real. There comes a point where you almost pity him and, to me at least, that makes this one of the best performances in film.

  • I'm sure the running time isn't for everyone, but then you'd be missing out on one of the most edge-of-your-seat experiences you could have. By the end of this film I felt as paranoid as the characters on screen. For the amount of story here, you never lose interest.

  • The running time is worth it. Yi Yi is a rather touching family chronicle that will make you laugh and maybe cry. The central performance from Jonathan Change is brilliant considering he's a child actor. However he did it, Yang really gets you into his head. Magic.

  • It was close between this and Rushmore, but Tenenbaums really seems to gather all the elements Wes Anderson movies are known for into one tidy little package. The story is rather run-of-the-mill, but the characters and dialogue bring it to another level. Gene Hackman gives a terrific performance. Ben Stiller also gives a surprisingly great performance in this considering the other roles he had around it.

  • Robert Mitchum is terrifying and perfect as a murderous con man. Lilian Gish is a perfect foil. Shelley Winters is...well...Shelley Winters. She's there and you won't miss her. The production design is fantastic and goes a long way in creating the mood throughout. All of it fits together so well and creates one of the most unique and stunning films in the collection. So much to see here.

  • A movie that seems to only be about a prison break but has so much more to say. Honorable mentions to Rules of the Game because it was a really close one. But this one has a perfect blend of comedy, drama, commentary, and pure entertainment. Jean Gabin and Eric von Stroheim are so well cast.

  • More than a handful of iconic shots and Orson Welles never really disappoints with a performance. A good story made into a great film. Too bad it's OOP. Would've loved having this in HD. Someday!


  • By Jordan F.
    November 30, 2012
    06:08 PM

    Nice list I wanna see Army of shadows
    • By stephen
      January 22, 2013
      04:47 PM

      Definitely worth picking up. Fantastic movie.
  • By Ulac
    January 12, 2013
    10:18 PM

    I agree with what you say about The Thin Red Line. I'm blown away by Malick's films each time I see one. Also, your comment on Army of Shadows really makes me want to see it...
    • By stephen
      January 22, 2013
      04:47 PM

      Well, thanks.
    July 04, 2013
    12:52 PM

    Great list!