Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Let's Do It Again: My 100 Favorite Films of All Time #60 - #51

Continuing on with my favorite films list, including a Star Wars opinion that I wrote about a while ago and I stand by it today.

Let's crack into that top 60, shall we?

60. Spotlight

The 2016 Academy Award winner for Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay is a terrific, compelling and insightful film with a focus on outstanding journalism and why we should give a shit when the President insights anger towards the media. Spotlight tells the true story of the team at the Boston Globe that uncovered a massive scandal of the sexual abuse of children at the local Catholic archdiocese. This country needs reporters like the Spotlight team, and director Tom McCarthy delivers one hell of a film about them.

59. The Insider

This set of ten films kicks off with back to back pictures that shine a, well, spotlight on journalism, this time with Michael Mann's spectacular dramatic thriller The Insider, based on the true story of a man named Jeffrey Wigand whom after being fired by a big tobacco company decides to come clean about some of the industry's best kept secrets to the television series 60 Minutes, facing pressure and threats to himself and his family to keep his mouth shut. Hard to believe this one is 18 years old now, I recall seeing it in the theater and being blown away. Multiple viewings later, nothing has changed.

58. Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Released when I was 7 years old, T2 was an instant classic for me at a very young age and these days I consider it to be a slice of iconic action filmmaking. Sometimes you watch something as a kid and look back at it later on and wonder what you loved about the movie. If anything, I actually love Terminator 2 even more today.

57. Inside Out

The 2015 Pixar film Inside Out, over the course of two years and a handful of viewings, has become my favorite animated film of all time. That simple. Funny, heartfelt, joyous and deeply, profoundly moving, this one is a true treasure.

56. Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi

Return of the Jedi is my fourth favorite Star Wars film, and it still manages to rank 56th on my all time favorites. Safe to say I love the franchise.

55. Fargo

One of a few masterful films from the Coen brothers, the 1996 crime drama Fargo doesn't feature a single misstep over its 90 or so minute duration. It's dark, disturbing, fascinating and really fucking funny. 

54. Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens

It's funny how I agree with every complaint I hear about regarding The Force Awakens and yet it just doesn't matter. Sure, it's a beat by beat remake of A New Hope, without a doubt, but maybe that's exactly what the Star Wars universe needed, a dose of history repeating itself while knowing exactly the right recipe to bring fans that were dismayed by the prequels back into the fold. I love the characters, new and old, I love the tone, I love the dialogue so, so much. I love this movie a ton.

53. The Godfather Part II

An often asked question and one that the answer given typically causes a debate is which Godfather film do you prefer? The original or the sequel? For me the answer is the first one, and we will get to that masterpiece eventually, but that isn't a slight to the stunning follow up The Godfather Part II by any means. Two tremendous, iconic works of cinema.

52. Full Metal Jacket

Stanley Kubrick and the subject of war, which he was clearly not a very big fan of, results in some exceptional cinematic experience. My list already included the film Paths of Glory and Dr. Strangelove, and now it is time for Full Metal Jacket to get the recognition it so deeply deserves.

51. Unforgiven

It took a long time for me to fall in love with westerns, only recently discovering some of the Sergio Leone classics that define the genre, but all along, ever since it was first released when I was a wee little child, I have loved Unforgiven, the best picture winning film both directed by and starring Clint Eastwood.