Most people are fully aware that I am a film junkie. It doesn’t take long upon meeting me to realize how much I love movies. I have always loved them, but truly started respecting film when I switched my major…to Film & Digital Media. The funny thing is, I actually don’t watch movies all that often (I hardly ever go to the theater). I have, however, seen a lot of movies. Does that make sense? Probably not, but it’s true either way.
That being said, since people usually know how much I love movies they are always asking me what my favorite movie is. The question is so difficult because there are so many different ways you can go with it. While I do have one I can point out as being my favorite, I have decided to provide my top 25 favorite films. #’s 1-5 are pretty set in stone in that order. After that it gets a little messy, and changes often, but it’s about in an accurate order.
*Note: the list is not comprised of the films I deem as the best. They are merely my favorites to watch, mostly for personal reasons. As far as best films, I could pretty much name anything by Wes Anderson, The Coen Bros., Martin Scorcese, or Steven Spielberg. I don’t even have the Godfather in my top 25, and that movie is one of the most phenomenal pictures ever. So please don’t get mad and say, “You put FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS on the list instead of VERTIGO! Hitchcock is the greatest filmmaker ever! The master of horror and suspense and all things awesome!! I should slap you!! And no old, crazy, French cinema! WHAAT?!?!” Remember, crazy girl from my directing class, I hardly have any say in this matter anyway, these are just personal favorites.
Here is my list:
- It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) – I adore every single minute of this movie. It actually makes me value my life more. Mr. Potter beats out Heath Ledger’s Joker and Javier Bardem’s Anton Chigurh for most evil villain of all time.
- Braveheart (1995) – most epic movie ever made
- The Departed (2006)- there is not one dull moment the entire film.
- The Shawshank Redemption (1994) – “get busy living or get busy dying” nuff said.
- Pulp Fiction (1994) – most interesting, cool, and clever movie I’ve seen. The writing, directing, cinematography just knocks my superman socks off every time I watch.
- LOTR: Return of the King (2003), Fellowship of the Ring (2001), The Two Towers (2002) - greatest trilogy ever. Apologies to #7, #15 and Michael J. Fox but it’s true. These movies are flawless. Sets the standard for book-to-movie interpretations.
- The Dark Knight (2008)- absolutely mind-blowing from start to finish.
- Gladiator – most inspirational movie on this list. Script, soundtrack, action sequences, all so good.
- Dumb & Dumber (1994) – please, find me a funnier movie. That’s right, you can’t. Not even with chances as good as one in a million.
- Saving Private Ryan (1998) - cinematically perfect as well as most historically accurate.
- Inception (2010) - visually stunning and terribly thought provoking. Nolan fooled us all with that spinning top…
- Into the Wild (2007) – strikes resonating chords deep within my wild soul.
- Reservoir Dogs (1992) - incredible action/heist film with hardly any action
- No Country for Old Men (2007) - most suspenseful film I’ve ever seen.
- Star Wars V (1980), VI (1983), IV (1977)- basically my childhood. I was raised well.
- Friday Night Lights (2004) - had to put this based on the sheer amount of times I’ve watched it. Still makes me cry to this day.
- There will be Blood (2007) - it’s perfect. Acting, visually, story. perfect. When I think of how I want to make movies, this is the first one I think of.
- American History X (1998) - speaks to such large, important issues, truly makes you self-evaluate and think.
- Snatch (2000) - unbelievably clever, witty, hilarious, and awesome.
- The Sandlot (2003) - when I think of growing up, I think the Sandlot. Then I remember that I haven’t grown up, which is why Benny the Jet and Co. make the top 25.
- Fight Club (1999) - my friends and I started a fight club the second the credits rolled. Then I realized this movie had almost nothing to do with fighting. (By the way, if you mute the movie and play Mumford and Son’s “Sigh No More” album, it has a Pink Floyd/Wizard of Oz effect. Crazy!)
- Donnie Darko (2001) - I could watch it 100 times and it would still make me think about it’s meaning. Something to do with time travel and a freaky bunny rabbit.
- Crash (2004) - incredible stories woven together to create a wonderful commentary on the world, race, and relationships.
- The Matrix (1999) - still remember my first time watching it in fourth grade and going absolutely crazy. One of the few movies with a story as cool as it’s special effects.
- The Blues Brothers (1980) - This movie is on a mission from God.
Honorable Mentions: The Prestige, Gangs of New York, O, Brother where Art thou?, Man on Fire, Moonrise Kingdom, 300, Schindler’s List
*Note: I am aware that 18 of the 25 movies are R-rated (sorry Mom). The R rating is mostly for violence and language in these films. I try to avoid nudity and sex altogether in the movies I watch. In the four films I’ve listed that do have nudity, the scenes are brief and could hardly be considered “raunchy” or gratuitous. I am at a point in movie-watching where I believe violence and language, when used to convey realism or speak to greater, world issues, are acceptably for me to view. This, however, does not mean yours and my convictions are the same. You may have to guard your own personal viewing of such films. But that’s a way bigger issue that I would rather discuss with you in person.
Cheers and stay tuned for my next post about my most recent video creation! (1929)