top-list What are your top ten films of all time?

richy

Member
Heh-heh. I think that, as a big fan of Avatar, as someone who's willing to openly profess his love for Avatar, you're just caught in the cross hairs of all the people who feel enmity towards Cameron and therefore his films. He's a huge success. His films are a huge success. And people start to resent that kind of success. I think we're probably all aware of the phenomenon of people loving it when VIPs fail, are brought low. Same kind of thing.

I think it's like the hamburger. It doesn't matter how big, juicy, and delicious that hamburger is. For some people, a hamburger will only ever be worthy of ridicule and scorn. Like in that film (I think it was?), Barcelona.

Avatar is like a big, tasty hamburger. For some people, a hamburger, by definition, on principle, will never be worthy of a kind word. It's filet mignon and caviar for them, or nothing. :)
 

sfoster

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
My problem with avatar is that it was such a blatant rip off of fern gully. Take someone else's work, slap 3d on it and make tons of money. Doesn't seem right. I don't like it when films remind me so strongly of another film, simply trying to get around paying for reboot rights.

Like Dale and Tucker vs Evil. Complete rip off A Film with me in it. Disgusting to watch.
 
10. Boyhood
9. Gran Torino
8. The Matrix
7. The Wizard of Oz
6. Rocky
5. Lawrence of Arabia
4. Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
3. 12 Angry Men
2. Star Wars
1. Citizen Kane
 
Last edited:
I won't get drawn on the Avatar debate – I enjoyed the film reasonably enough, but it always ends up bringing out the worst of this forum ;) Let it go, we all like different things (that said, feel free to attack any of my choices!).

I'm going to give my list and some explanations. As someone earlier in this thread said, it's all about context. Sometimes I love a film because it's a great film; sometimes I love a film because it means something specific to me; and sometimes I love a film because I just had a great time watching it.

10) The Shining

I saw The Shining, for the first time, when I was about 7 or 8. My mum inexplicably showed it to me and my sister (and, the next week, my Dad showed us A Clockwork Orange in what I now suspect was some weird bet). Didn't find it scary at the time and I still don't, but it's a film that I could watch over and over again, and it's definitely a benchmark against which all my appreciation of cinema is set. I love the atmosphere, I love the performances, I love the fact that horror is at its most horrifying when it's not about jump scares but about that creeping, insidious dread. I didn't feel the dread as a kid, but I think it sowed a seed that's only grown in me through the years.

9) Brief Encounter

Saddest film ever. I'm a massive crier in films and that's pretty much the best feeling for me, even though I know that it's an easily manipulated emotion. Brief Encounter is the most exquisite film about restrain and impulse, but, worst of all, it's a film that knows that the great tragedy of human existence is life itself. I love Noel Coward's writing and David Lean's direction, whilst showier in Lawrence of Arabia, is never finer than here. It's a film which, for me to even think about provokes a sense of despair.


8) Bicentennial Man

My memories of this film have been stirred a lot by the death of Robin Williams, but this was the ONLY film I wanted to watch as a kid (and what a strange choice). I remember we'd go to the video store at the weekends and I'd always pick out Bicentennial Man (I don't know why we never seemed to just buy a copy) and, of all the films in the world, this is probably the one I've seen the most times. It's really sad and unsettling and based on an Asimov novella which is probably why it speaks so much about frustration and limitation, but also, obviously, hope, cos it's a family flick!

7) The Social Network

I think it's sometimes hard to judge how 'good' a film is until its got a decade under its belt. That said, I think The Social Network will stand up as *the* film of its generation. It's also part of a body of work, David Fincher's, which I admire as much, if not more, than any filmmaker currently at work today. So whilst The Social Network is my favourite of his movies, it gets bolstered in my mind by my love for Zodiac and Seven as well.

6) Casablanca

Best script ever, fact. If I ever needed a fire lit under my ass, Casablanca did that to me. To write something so iconic, where every light is weighted with metrical precision...well, that'd be swell.

5) Secrets and Lies

Again, this is a film which I saw for a very specific reason and at a very specific point in my life and maybe I look at it more fondly for that. That said, it's an exquisitely beautifully written and directed film and such a benchmark for British cinema. It has, in my opinion, some of the finest performances in modern cinema and cannot be overrated.

4) Caché

One of the first films I remember being absolutely shocked by. It's a film that's deeply upsetting, troubling and concedes nothing with its outlook of the world. It's definitely my favourite Haneke film, as I've been largely unmoved by his other works. I sometimes wonder whether I just saw the film at the right time or whether it's actually a great movie, but it's undoubtedly one of the films that has been instrumental to me.

3) Scream

I love the entire Scream franchise, but if I had to choose just one, I think I'd go with the original. It's formula has been reworked so many times that it's hard to see how clever it is, but it succeeds on three awesome levels: First, it's funny. Second, it's kind of scary in a fun slasher way. Third, it's an original and unique piece of filmmaking in a genre that veers towards the generic (if that isn't tautological).

2) Badlands

For quite a verbose writer, this is one of the first films that blew me away by its dialogue simplicity. It's a film which is as much about landscape as it is about people (or the interaction between the two), and it takes pre-conceived notions about crime drama and the Starkweather history, and turns them into something lyrical and outside of language. It's something that runs through Malick's works – that pursuit of the intangible experiences that occur between interactions, and when I first saw Badlands, I was really excited by that.

1) Annie Hall

This is the film that has informed me the most as a cinema watcher and a filmmaker. It's a comedy that isn't burdened by its own frivolity; a rom-com which is innovative, passionate and unique. It's an auteurs film and an audience-goers film. And, in terms of narrative storytelling, is one of the most fascinating ways of telling the classic boy-meets-girl story around. It's a film I revisit every few months because I still find it fresh and funny and it's like pulling on warm pyjamas.
 
I suppose I fed the troll. My bad, shouldn't have done that. Nick, it's worthy of you to invite criticisms of your favorites, but nobody is going to do that. The movie that shall not be named is a popular punching-bag, and it's just getting really old at this point.

Back to what I mentioned before, I really enjoy how personal these lists are. Nick's is particularly eclectic. Since you've got Scream on there, I'm curious what your thoughts are on Cabin in the Woods.

On a side-note, I believe Scream had the most genius advertising campaign EVER. The posters, the trailers, EVERYTHING pointed to
Drew Barrymore, the one-and-only name actor in the cast, as being the star of the movie. She was supposed to be the one to survive and vanquish the villain. Killing her in the first scene was a punch in the gut for the audience. All rules are off the table, anything goes from here on out.

Another side-note: I'm surprised that nobody has called me out on not having either a Star Wars or Star Trek movie on my list. No LotR, either. :P
 

richy

Member
That's why it's kinda fun to do these top ten lists once again, every once in a while. On another day I might put Empire Strikes Back on my list. Not likely. But if I happened to be feelin it that day... :)

But I wouldn't criticize anyone for not choosing a film from one of those big franchises. I didn't. And probably wouldn't. It's all good fun.
 
Back to what I mentioned before, I really enjoy how personal these lists are. Nick's is particularly eclectic. Since you've got Scream on there, I'm curious what your thoughts are on Cabin in the Woods.

On a side-note, I believe Scream had the most genius advertising campaign EVER. The posters, the trailers, EVERYTHING pointed to
Drew Barrymore, the one-and-only name actor in the cast, as being the star of the movie. She was supposed to be the one to survive and vanquish the villain. Killing her in the first scene was a punch in the gut for the audience. All rules are off the table, anything goes from here on out.
I was a big cheerleader for Cabin in the Woods and I really think its excellent fun. Obviously, it owes quite a big debt to Scream but I feel like it is more self-conscious about this than other meta-horrors.

I wasn't around for the original marketing for the film, but Drew Barrymore's role in that film is a conscious reference to Psycho and Janet Leigh. I think that's why Wes Craven is such a clever director: he has a great appreciation of history and convention, but also a very good eye for the unique. Often directors err to heavily in one of those directions, but Craven is someone who has created new cliches in horror whilst skewering the older cliches, and I think that's an admirable balance.
 
I wanted the giant blue smurfs to lose in Avatar. I was rooting for the Marines! Just hated the story but loved the SFX at the time.

Nick Clapper's right, it's also about time and place (and also how I'm feeling at the moment). List is:

1. Any Given Sunday. Oliver Stone found my locker room. Just genius.
2. Metropolis.
3. Star Wars IV
4. Pulp Fiction
5. The Great Dictator, 1940. Urban legend is the film Hitler hated the most.
6. Apocalypse Now
7. The Good, The Bad and the Ugly
8. Le Diner des Cons.
9. 12 Angry Men. Genius.
10. Jaws

My list makes me think I'm really boring! And no room for the game changer, El Mariachi.
 
My list is probably considered a little more commercial and changes daily, but here is how I am feeling today in no particular order.

The Evil Dead (1982)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Double Indemnity (1944)
Jaws (1975)
Let the Right One In (2008)
American Movie (1999)
The Puffy Chair (2005)
Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Mulholland Drive (2001)
 
I wanted the giant blue smurfs to lose in Avatar. I was rooting for the Marines! Just hated the story but loved the SFX at the time.

Nick Clapper's right, it's also about time and place (and also how I'm feeling at the moment). List is:

1. Any Given Sunday. Oliver Stone found my locker room. Just genius.
2. Metropolis.
3. Star Wars IV
4. Pulp Fiction
5. The Great Dictator, 1940. Urban legend is the film Hitler hated the most.
6. Apocalypse Now
7. The Good, The Bad and the Ugly
8. Le Diner des Cons.
9. 12 Angry Men. Genius.
10. Jaws

My list makes me think I'm really boring! And no room for the game changer, El Mariachi.
I like your picks :) Apparently i need to see Le Diner des Cons.


1.Apocalypse Now
2. Pulp fiction
3. Star wars a new hope
4. 8 1/2
5. The great Dictator
6. Requiem for a Dream
7. The Big Lebowski
8. Blade runner
9. The Shining
10. Jaws

The list is always changing for me but i am pretty sure apocalypse now, pulp fiction requiem for a dream and star wars a new hope will always be on the list. I am sure some classics i forgot about will pop in my head.
 
Last edited:

richy

Member
Good call on Jaws, those of you who chose it; while I know it's all subjective and transitory.

But, damn, yeah, Jaws really is one of the great ones. It's so well crafted...and that's despite all the troubles they had. The actors were all so well cast. They all really delivered. It's really a landmark film. Maybe it doesn't get the accolades it should because it is, basically, a monster movie. But what a monster movie.
 
Can I also list animated movies? If yes, then:

1) The Dark Knight
2) Slumdog Millionaire
3) Terminator 2
4) Titanic
5) Matrix
6) The Dumb and the Dumber (the old one)
7) Lord of the Rings Trilogy (not the Hobbit!)
8) Resident Evil 2
9) Ratatoille
10) Princess of Mononoke
 
I like your picks :) Apparently i need to see Le Diner des Cons.


1.Apocalypse Now
2. Pulp fiction
3. Star wars a new hope
4. 8 1/2
5. The great Dictator
6. Requiem for a Dream
7. The Big Lebowski
8. Blade runner
9. The Shining
10. Jaws

The list is always changing for me but i am pretty sure apocalypse now, pulp fiction requiem for a dream and star wars a new hope will always be on the list. I am sure some classics i forgot about will pop in my head.
I loved Blade Runner.

Have to see 8 1/2 now...

The only thing about the diner des cons is it's in French and the translation sucks big time. If you speak French, it's a great comedy with some morality in there. If you don't, I wouldn't bother.
 
Cool lists people :). I have always thought Blade Runner is overrated. I just watched it again, I still feel their are problems with the plot, just as I thought way back when I first saw it, and never saw the appeal. I mean I understand that it was well made, but because of the plot problems, I couldn't say it's one of the greats. I think that the movie that inspired it Metropolis, is much better. I have that one on my top ten but I keep reconsidering it. My top six is easy to decide one, but I keep reconsidering the remaining four.

I see I am not the only one who thinks that Slumdog Millionaire is one of the top five best movies ever made, and I think it's hugely underrated.

I also do like Avatar. It's not a great or perfect movie. I agree it's cliched, but it does not deserve all the flak it gets. The cliches bring it down to a fun B movie, with good qualities, it's not as bad as a lot of people make it out to be. I give it a 7/10 for what it has to offer, but of course a movie would have to be 10/10 to reach my top ten list.

And yes, I think animated movies are allowed. If I can pick a documentary and a silent film for top ten, than I think animations should be allowed.
 
I also do like Avatar. It's not a great or perfect movie. I agree it's cliched, but it does not deserve all the flak it gets. The cliches bring it down to a fun B movie, with good qualities, it's not as bad as a lot of people make it out to be. I give it a 7/10 for what it has to offer, but of course a movie would have to be 10/10 to reach my top ten list.
I would list Avatar if the title was "List your 20 favorite movies". :) It's a very good movie, but I wouldn't call it Epic, like The Dark Knight or Slumdog Millionaire or Terminator 2. Oh, and I still didn't watch Guardians of Galaxy, which I feel it can enter my top 10 list :)
 
Top