Essential movies – Whale Eaters http://whaleeaters.org/ Mon, 11 Apr 2022 18:37:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9 https://whaleeaters.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-6-160x160.png Essential movies – Whale Eaters http://whaleeaters.org/ 32 32 Five essential movies mostly set on a cruise ship https://whaleeaters.org/five-essential-movies-mostly-set-on-a-cruise-ship/ Fri, 08 Apr 2022 17:05:53 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/five-essential-movies-mostly-set-on-a-cruise-ship/ The multi-billion dollar cruise ship industry is currently going through extremely difficult times. Not only does no one want to cruise due to the coronavirus crisis, but the ships themselves have become deadly hotspots for the spread of disease. Take the Diamond Princess, an international ship that has spread the coronavirus so rapidly throughout its […]]]>

The multi-billion dollar cruise ship industry is currently going through extremely difficult times. Not only does no one want to cruise due to the coronavirus crisis, but the ships themselves have become deadly hotspots for the spread of disease. Take the Diamond Princess, an international ship that has spread the coronavirus so rapidly throughout its ship that it currently has more cases than actual countries such as Malaysia, Portugal, the Czech Republic and Brazil. Additionally, there are also reports of countries across the Caribbean refusing to take cruise ships lest they reintroduce a variety of cases to their lands.

Not to mention their current non-coronavirus issues, such as being among the biggest polluters in the world and ruining idyllic towns such as Venice and Dubrovnik by dumping an unhealthy amount of tourists onto their shores every day. We imagine that once this whole crisis is over, people will start serious conversations about their place in the world.

For now though, it’s time to reminisce about some of the most thrilling cruise ship adventures. A time when these were glamorous affairs, places of romance, adventure and danger. To help you celebrate, we’ve compiled a list of five essential cruise ship adventures. Spanning classic romances to iconic disasters and sometimes both in the same movie, our list should keep you satiated while you wait for the world to return to normal and you can get back on a classic cruise liner. Read on to see what we picked. Do you think we missed something essential? Let us know in the comment section below.

Poseidon’s Adventure

During the boom of the 1970s in disaster films such as Airport and The infernal tower, Poseidon’s Adventure may be the best of the lot. It tells the story of the SS Poseidon, an aging ship on its final voyage from New York to Athens that is suddenly overturned by a tsunami – leaving the characters to scramble to find their way to safety.

It’s held together by a barnyard performance from Gene Hackman as a priest known for his unorthodox views. He doesn’t act like he’s in a simple gender picture. He acts like he’s in the lead role of a Bergman movie, imbuing his performance with much-needed moral turmoil and making Poseidon’s Adventure far more convincing than perhaps it should have been. It was remade in the 2000s with Kurt Russell and heavily upgraded special effects, but this version can’t compete with the fantastical original.

A case to remember

Deborah Kerr and Cary Grant are a match made in heaven in romantic delirium A case to remember. It tells the story of a playboy, played by Grant, who meets a woman on the SS Constitution en route to New York. They quickly become friends, their relationship slowly developing into something more special, despite the fact that they are both involved with someone else.

Nevertheless, they agree, if all goes well, to meet in six months at the top of the Empire State Building, where they can consummate their relationship. However, on the day of the fateful meeting, Terry is injured in a car accident, unfortunately making their meeting impossible. A deliberately melodramatic exploration of love versus fate, this is a film that will have you reaching for the tissue box at regular intervals.

Men prefer blondes

Based on the 1949 musical of the same name, this Howard Hawks film is a lighthearted and enjoyable cruise trip filled with outlandish musical numbers and endless sight gags. It stars Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell as two stage girls looking for love; the first a wealthy husband to help her achieve economic success, the second a man who can match her fierce beauty and sharp wit.

A truly sparkling confection, it was a huge box office hit when it was released in 1953. Now it’s best known for Marilyn Monroe’s iconic rendition of ‘Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend’ – a true fashion staple. pop culture that has been covered by everyone from Beyoncé to Madonna to Christina Aguilera to James Franco.

Speed ​​2: Cruise control

Criticized upon its release, Speed ​​2: Cruise control takes the model from the original Speed movie and does something completely deranged but relentlessly entertaining. Sandra Bullock reprises her role from the original film as a woman vacationing on a cruise ship through the Caribbean who finds more than she bargained for when the ship is taken over by a villain named Geiger, played perfectly by Willem Dafoe. Once again, the vehicle simply cannot stop, heading for the mainland and potentially leaving acres of destruction in its wake.

It is notable for Roger Ebert’s three and a half star review which stood in contrast to contemporary critics of the time. While everyone thought the film was pure nonsense, he called it a “really catchy ocean liner adventure story”. I’m going to have to agree with Roger on this one.

Titanic

If there was solid proof of cruise ships’ innate pull on the imagination, look to the titanic box office success for Titanic, which grossed over $2 billion in 1997. A three-hour-plus cruise ship extravaganza, it has everything you could want from the genre, starting with romance, intrigue, the founding myths of the immigration and rivalry, before descending into an epic disaster movie.

Anchored by two great performances by Kate Winslet and Leonardo DiCaprio as star-crossed lovers, Titanic remains one of the best films ever made. Of course, many cruise ship romances hinge on this idea of ​​temporary romance. The characters fall in love but once back on earth (usually in New York), they must return to their real life. However, by having Jack die at sea, Rose can freeze him forever in time, raising him to an ideal of a man that she will never have again. A remarkably brave move in a remarkable, once-in-a-lifetime film. The cruise ship genre is unlikely to be as wonderful again.


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Remembering director Ivan Reitman with his 10 essential movies https://whaleeaters.org/remembering-director-ivan-reitman-with-his-10-essential-movies/ Tue, 15 Mar 2022 00:00:00 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/remembering-director-ivan-reitman-with-his-10-essential-movies/ Can a movie about paranormal creatures that crawled out of the darkness and scared civilians still be hilarious? Ivan Reitman proved that such a film can exist. His most notable film was ghost hunters (1984). With his signature song, “Who you gonna call?” of Ray Parker Jr., ghost hunters is a staple of pop culture. […]]]>

Can a movie about paranormal creatures that crawled out of the darkness and scared civilians still be hilarious? Ivan Reitman proved that such a film can exist. His most notable film was ghost hunters (1984). With his signature song, “Who you gonna call?” of Ray Parker Jr., ghost hunters is a staple of pop culture.

RELATED: 8 Most Romantic Alfred Hitchcock Movies, Ranked

However, this was not Reitman’s first film, his first directed film was a short, titled Orientation (1968) which depicted the life of university students. Reitman directed and produced a diverse assortment of comedies, including a political comedy, before his death on February 12, 2022, at the age of 75. To truly understand Reitman’s creativity and artistic range, it is essential to watch some of his films.

“Draft Day” (2014)


Kevin Costner in
Image via Summit Entertainment

draft day (2014) kicked off with one of the most stressful days for Sonny Weaver Jr. (Kevin Costner), the general manager of the Cleveland Browns. Decisions made on NFL draft day have impacted not only the upcoming seasons of professional sports teams, but also the future of several athletes. Any erroneous or uncalculated moves could jeopardize Sonny’s job security.

draft day (2014) was outside of Reitman’s usual lineup of films, but draft day demonstrated Reitman’s ability to deliver drama that anticipated the pressures of meeting expectations or taking risks. draft day the focus was not on the athletes but on the people working behind the scenes, such as the analysts.

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“Evolution” (2001)


David Duchovny, Seann William, Scott Orlando Jones in
Image via Columbia Pictures

David Duchovnyknown for his notable role as Fox Mulder in the television series the X-Files (1993-2018, starred as Dr. Ira Kane in the film Evolution (2001). Dr. Ira Kane and Professor Harry Phineas Block (Orlando Jones) investigated a meteor that struck Earth in Arizona. As they began to analyze the meteor, they saw that the meteor was oozing an unidentifiable substance.

The more they examined the meteor, the more strange specimens evolved near the meteor. Evolution (2001) captures the sci-fi aesthetic of ghost hunters (1984), but rather than focusing on ghosts, Evolution proposed the possibility of extraterrestrial and human contact.


“Six Days Seven Nights” (1998)


Harrison Ford and Anne Heche standing on an island in
Image via Caravan Pictures

In six days seven nights (1998), Robin Monroe (Anne Heche) was assigned to cover a story about Tahiti and hoped she would be back on vacation with her future fiancé in no time. His flight took a slight detour when the plane crashed on an island during a storm. Robin and Quinn Harris (Harrison Ford) were stuck on the island.

Robin and Quinn probably thought of themselves as the last person they wanted to be stuck on an island with. Reitman’s six days seven nights had less drama like in the movie Castaway (2000), but still contains the same amount of adventures.

“Father’s Day” (1997)


Billy Crystal and Robin Williams in
Image via Warner Bros.

What is a way to find a missing person? In Fathers Day (1997), Colette Andrews (Nastasja Kinski) convinced two men, Dale Putley (Robin Williams) and Jack Lawrence (billy crystal) to help him find his son. Collette previously had a relationship with both of them, so when she told each of them separately that they might be the father of her missing son, they didn’t seem to really question it. However, Dale and Jack realized that they were both looking for the same person.

RELATED: 10 Comedies That Were Supposed To Be Bad, But Actually Were Good

Reitman’s Fathers Day (1997) was based on the movie remake Freinds (1983) or The ComDads. A slight difference between the two films was the professions the two would-be fathers had. In Fathers Day, Dale was a writer and Jack was a lawyer, while in Freinds, one of the men was a journalist while the other was a teacher.

‘Junior’ (1994)


Danny Devito and Arnold Schwarzenegger in
Picture via Universal Pictures

In Junior (1994), Dr. Larry Arbogast (Danny DeVito) and Dr. Alex Hesse (Arnold Schwarzenegger) were about to make a breakthrough. They developed a drug that would minimize the chances of a mother losing her baby or having a miscarriage. To test their drug, Dr. Arbogast conducted an experiment by injecting the drug into Dr. Hesse.

What were the side effects of this experience? One of the side effects was that Dr. Hesse was pregnant. As the story progressed, with the narrative at a steady pace, more side effects were revealed. These side effects were similar to those most women experience when pregnant. Along with the side effects, it became harder to hide Dr. Hesse’s pregnancy.

‘David’ (1993)


Kevin Kline and Sigourney Weaver in
Image via Warner Bros.

Everyone is said to have at least six to seven look-alikes in the world. David Kovic (Kevin Kline) could have been the luckiest man in the world. One of these lookalikes was Bill Mitchell, the President of the United States in the film. David (1993). When President Mitchell fell into a coma, Chief of Staff Bob Alexander (Frank Langelle) wanted to make sure that this news did not reach the public.

So he decided, along with communications director Alan Reed (Kevin Dunn) that they would hire Dave to be the president’s replacement. Very few presidential staff knew of the replacement, but those who did were suspicious of the president’s new behavior and decisions. Reitman’s movie David could be compared to the movie The parent trap (1998), except that the stakes are much higher.

“Kindergarten Cop” (1990)


Arnold Schwarzenegger and Linda Hunt in
Picture via Universal Pictures

In kindergarten cop (1990), cop John Kimble (Schwarzenegger) knew he could finally catch Cullen Crisp, a drug dealer. All Officer Kimble needed was Crisp’s ex-wife to testify against Crisp. The problem was that he didn’t know the ex-wife’s name, but did know the school his son went to. To catch him, Kimble posed as an undercover substitute kindergarten teacher.

Schwarzenegger usually stars in action-packed films such as The Terminator franchise, Predator (1987), or Evacuation plan (2013). He almost always portrays tough and fearless characters. In Reitman’s films, Schwarzenegger was able to express his comedic side, and his character realized that controlling a group of high-energy 5-year-olds can be just as difficult as fighting crime.


Robert Redford and Debra Winger in
Picture via Universal Pictures

legal eagles (1986) focused on the court case, where Chelsea Deardon (Daryl Hannah) was accused of stealing a painting. Assistant District Attorney Tom Logan (Robert Redford) and Chelsea lawyer Laura Kelly (Debra Winger) had planned to prove Chelsea’s innocence. However, the case didn’t seem as cut and dried as it first appeared, as Chelsea were also soon charged with murder.

RELATED: ’80s Action Movies That Still Give You a Hard Time

Tom and Laura had different approaches to investigating the case. They usually worked on opposite sides of the law and their client did not share all of her information with them. legal eagles was not just courtroom drama, but interwoven both romantic and comedic narrative.

“Ghostbusters” (1984)


Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson in
Image via Columbia Pictures

ghost hunters (1984) is a timeless classic. When strange, unexplainable paranormal activity took place on the streets of New York, there was only one team capable of getting the job done: The Ghostbusters. The Ghostbusters were made up of parapsychologists, Dr. Peter Venkman (Bill Murray), Dr. Raymond Stantz (Dan Aykroyd), and Dr. Egon Spengler (Harold Ramis). After being fired from their jobs in college, they started their own company under the name “Ghostbusters”. Ghostbusters has put an end to all the paranormal spirits that haunt New York.

30 years after the remake ghost hunters (2016) was released with a female team of Ghostbusters. After the remake, was a sequel to the ghost hunters (1984), and Ghostbusters II (1989) films titled Ghostbusters: Afterlife (2021). Murray, Aykroyd and Ramis reprized their roles in Ghostbusters: Afterlife.

‘Stripes’ (1981)


Bill Murray, Harold Ramis, Joe Flaherty in
Image via Columbia Pictures

In Grooves (1981) was the final straw for taxi driver John Winger (Murray) when his fickle last client called him a “tramp” and told him he wouldn’t stand for anything. Soon after, he lost his job, his car, his apartment and his girlfriend left him echoing the similar reminder that the client said before, that he will stand for nothing.

With nothing to lose, he joins the army with his friend Russell Zimsky (Ramis). The film, Grooves, employed slapstick comedic techniques that exaggerated the definition of professional soldiers. However, it has become the perfect place for John and Russell, as they don’t seem like the type of soldiers who would fight on the front lines. Grooves was not like typical war movie viewers would likely find on Netflix.

KEEP READING: Ranking the 6 Movies Directed by Danny DeVito


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12 must-see films to see this weekend (February 11-13): ‘Uncharted’, ‘Interstellar’, ‘I want you to come back’ and more https://whaleeaters.org/12-must-see-films-to-see-this-weekend-february-11-13-uncharted-interstellar-i-want-you-to-come-back-and-more/ Fri, 11 Feb 2022 16:09:16 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/12-must-see-films-to-see-this-weekend-february-11-13-uncharted-interstellar-i-want-you-to-come-back-and-more/ It’s time to welcome a new weekend, February 2, 2022, something that usually equates to having more free time. And maybe you want to spend it watching some of the 12 films that I have selected for you. On the menu, you have both movie premieres and streaming releases, news in physical format, and movies […]]]>

It’s time to welcome a new weekend, February 2, 2022, something that usually equates to having more free time. And maybe you want to spend it watching some of the 12 films that I have selected for you. On the menu, you have both movie premieres and streaming releases, news in physical format, and movies you can catch on a nationwide Spanish television network these days.

In theaters

‘Unexplored’

Adaptation of the famous video game saga with Tom Holland inheriting the role of Nathan Dranke and Mark Wahlberg like his mentor Victor Sullivan. A compelling and entertaining blockbuster in which you will find a great spectacle that also does not take longer than necessary.

Review of “Uncharted” by Mikel Zorrilla

‘Licorice Pizza’

Paul Thomas Anderson He is one of the best working filmmakers in Hollywood. He doesn’t always hit the bullseye, but his films are always worth watching. He offers here a romantic story with nostalgic overtones that works wonderfully the first hour then less.

Review of ‘Licorice Pizza’ by Kiko Vega

Diffusion

‘big bug’

Jean-Pierre Jeunet returns with its first feature in nearly a decade with a quirky sci-fi comedy for Netflix in which it’s abundantly clear who’s behind it all, both in its visual engagement and in the cast of characters trapped in a house against their will.

‘kimi’

Steven Soderbergh returns with a thriller streaming straight to HBO Max with Zoe Kravitz bring to life a woman suffering from agoraphobia who uncovers evidence that a violent crime has been committed. It doesn’t even last 90 minutes and its director gave us more joy than disappointment…

‘I want you back’ (‘I want you back’)

The new Amazon original film is a comedy in which its two protagonists join forces to end the relationships of their respective exes and thus win them back. A priori, this seems to be a good option for the next Valentine’s Day.

in physical format

‘Eternals’

The Ambitious Movie wonder finally makes its debut in physical format. Highly appreciated by a minority, the truth is that it is one of the studio’s productions least appreciated by critics and the public, because it is one thing to try to do something different, in betting in this case on a more emotional approach, and another of the result is up to par.

Review of “Eternals” by Mikel Zorrilla

on TV

“Shoot Em Up (Into the Spotlight)”

A wonderful action-comedy, ideal if you want to freak out a bit, as it’s not afraid to use whatever excess it deems necessary to give you an entertaining time, to the point of wielding logic that feels more typical some cartoons. Moreover, the duel between Clive Owen and Paul Giamatti it is the most pleasant.

Friday at 22:00 in DMAX

Criticism at Espinof

‘The thing’

Probably the best horror movie in cinema history. A true miracle of John Charpentier which has everything to surprise you with this claustrophobic story in which a threat gradually destroys all the characters.

Early morning from Friday to Saturday at 12:30 a.m. at Neox

Criticism at Espinof

“Steve Jobs”

Ambitious biopic directed by Danny Boyle and with a script Aaron Sorkins. In fact, at more than one point it’s clear that this is more of a Sorkin movie than a Boyle movie, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Also beware of the great work of its cast, especially the excellent performance of Michael Fassbender.

Early morning from Friday to Saturday at 12:30 a.m. at La 1

Review of “Steve Jobs” by Mikel Zorrilla

“The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring”

The start of an unforgettable trilogy is a sensational epic fantasy film. peter jackson He embroidered it by paying the necessary attention to the characters -and to the quality of the casting choice- before the show took the stage, where it also shines like few others.

Saturday at 10:31 PM in CLAN

Review of “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring” by Mikel Zorrilla

‘On the Other Side of the Law’ (‘Dragged Across Concrete’)

A captivating thriller starring Mel Gibson and Vince Vaughn which was not properly distributed in Spain, its prime time broadcast is therefore a golden opportunity to recover that third of S. Craig Zahler. And if you haven’t seen them, be sure to do your best to keep an eye out for ‘Bone Tomahawk’ and ‘Brawl in Cell Block 99’.

Review of ‘The Other Side of the Law’ by Víctor López

‘interstellar’

One of the most acclaimed science fiction films of recent years in which Christopher Nolan he knew how to balance his more cerebral aspect with the need for the emotional factor to have a greater weight than usual in his cinema.

Sunday at 11:15 p.m. in La 1

Review of ‘Interstellar’ by Mikel Zorrilla


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11 must-see films to see this weekend (February 4-6): ‘Moonfall’, ‘Mission Impossible: Fallout’, ‘Through My Window’ and more https://whaleeaters.org/11-must-see-films-to-see-this-weekend-february-4-6-moonfall-mission-impossible-fallout-through-my-window-and-more/ Fri, 04 Feb 2022 16:40:58 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/11-must-see-films-to-see-this-weekend-february-4-6-moonfall-mission-impossible-fallout-through-my-window-and-more/ A new weekend is about to begin and in Espinof we were not going to miss our cinema with the most outstanding cinema you can see these days in cinemas, streaming platforms, physical or broadcast format on a Spanish national television channel. Below you will find the 11 movies which I selected this time. In […]]]>

A new weekend is about to begin and in Espinof we were not going to miss our cinema with the most outstanding cinema you can see these days in cinemas, streaming platforms, physical or broadcast format on a Spanish national television channel. Below you will find the 11 movies which I selected this time.

In theaters

‘fall of the moon’

Roland Emmerich’s new disaster film is a real nonsense that combines both the most playful and the most dramatic aspects of this type of production. A very daring proposition but perhaps not as entertaining as many would like.

‘Driving my car’

One of the great auteur cinema sensations of recent times is this film by Ryūsuke Hamaguchi of a story of Haruki Murakami. Three hours of footage that received a host of applause in its wake, to the point that it even looks like it could be one of the best picture nominees at the next Oscars.

Diffusion

“Through My Window”

Netflix’s big theatrical release this week is the adaptation of a bestselling romance novel. The result is a sort of “Fifty Shades of Grey” aimed at a teenage audience, with all that that entails.

in physical format

“Three o’clock robbery”

One of the most iconic comedies in the history of Spanish cinema. Very funny and with a wonderfully chosen cast, this film by Jose Maria Forque It has an ingenious script and with good dialogues so that it is almost impossible not to have a good time with it.

‘At the bottom of the stairs’ (‘The Changeling’)

A great horror movie Pierre Medak knows how to take full advantage of the concept of haunted houses. The only downside we could put is that there are so many works that have drunk it that, obviously, it doesn’t make the same impression.

on TV

‘Multiple’ (‘Divide’)

definitive confirmation that M.Night Shyamalan was still in shape came from the hand of this remarkable thriller in which a very inspired james mcavoyalthough the eye also the good work of Anya Taylor-Joy.

Early morning from Friday to Saturday at 12:30 a.m. at La 1

‘Lost’ (‘Gone Girl’)

A twisted thriller David Fincher that in other hands it might have been another but it wasn’t and what we got was an absorbing film that knows how to fully squeeze the mystery it offers Gillian Flynncounting for it with a top-notch cast led by Rosamund Pike and Ben Affleck.

Saturday at 3:30 p.m. at Paramount

‘Maverick’

A comic western for which I will always have a lot of affection, because it is a fairly accessible gateway to the genre, because it has other attractions such as the alchemy between Mel Gibson and Jodie Fosterthe good work behind the scenes Richard Donner or a specially inspired home stretch in which poker is featured.

Saturday at 6:15 p.m. in Trece

‘The Invisible Thread’ (‘Ghost Thread’)

A twisted and elegant film by Paul Thomas Anderson which explores the special relationship established between the characters embodied by masters Daniel Day-Lewis and Vicky Krieps.

Saturday at 10 p.m. at La 2

“Riddick”

The antihero embodied by Wine Diesel it returns with a third opus clearly superior to its predecessor but without equaling the remarkable ‘Pitch Black’, with which it shares a similar tone. A good science fiction film that also knows how to entertain the public.

Sunday at 3:45 p.m. at Paramount

“Mission Impossible: Fallout”

a great adventure Tom Cruise like Ethan Hunt in which the excellent action scenes shot by Christopher McQuarrie and the appropriate addition of Henry Cavill to the saga. During a first viewing, I was not very convinced by the script, but the second time I saw it, it became clear to me that I was too picky at the time.

Sunday at 10:05 p.m. in La 1


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Ten essential films from ten years ago https://whaleeaters.org/ten-essential-films-from-ten-years-ago-2/ Thu, 25 Nov 2021 14:00:21 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/ten-essential-films-from-ten-years-ago-2/ Tom Jolliffe goes back 10 years in 2011, showing up to ten must-see films of the year … I am almost stunned that we are now 10 years from 2011. For me 2011 is the future. I’m still stuck somewhere in 2004. How on earth are 21 year olds born in this century now? Yet […]]]>

Tom Jolliffe goes back 10 years in 2011, showing up to ten must-see films of the year …

I am almost stunned that we are now 10 years from 2011. For me 2011 is the future. I’m still stuck somewhere in 2004. How on earth are 21 year olds born in this century now? Yet here we are. Let’s not be overly optimistic about the future prospects of film offerings. Might as well look back instead. 2011 has been a pretty solid film year, with some real cult favorites dotted around. Here are 10 must-see movies from that year.

Tyrannosaurus

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Let’s start with a movie that may have escaped your radar. Stellar actor Paddy Considine has gone on to become a stellar filmmaker, writing and directing this story of a bitter man grappling with his vices and uncontrollable anger. Outside of a small audience in the UK, it didn’t really get the attention it deserved. Peter Mullan has proven once again how a totally underrated actor he is with an amazing performance and Olivia Colman is also superb here. She has stepped into the kind of star she more deserves than in the years since, and is now (rightfully) an Oscar-winning actress. Tyrannosaurus is a grim but compelling vision.

To protect

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Another film that has slipped somewhat under the radar. To protect is an exciting character play that sees Michael Shannon give a better career performance as a blue collar family man who becomes obsessed with a premonition he has about an apocalyptic event. His obsession quickly interferes with work and family life, and finds him at odds with the community as well. The film drew public attention to writer / director Jeff Nichol and the film received critical acclaim, although it failed to find a large following. It’s a wonderful movie.

Silver ball

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Brad Pitt as a baseball coach who develops a revolutionary statistics-based screening method. It either sounds like the wet dreams of fantasy baseball league fans, or it sounds like a cinematic death song to the rest of us. It turns out that fans of the fantasy league are right. Silver ball has been unfairly dismissed in some corners as populist guts, but it’s a compelling, true story that makes the subject matter entertaining. Pitt is as effortlessly charismatic as one might expect, but the big surprise here was Jonah Hill, stepping away from stoner comedies and delivering a performance that shattered any preconceptions about his limits. Without lacking in snobbery, some rejected his six Oscar nominations (including a surprise but welcome nod to Hill and one to Pitt), but the success of awards season was justified.

Tinker Tailor Spy Soldier

Tinker-Tailor-Soldier-Spy-Gary-Oldman

Based on the novel by the late John Le Carré, this classic Cold War era story gets a perfect film adaptation (which is also worthy of the excellent British TV miniseries). Gary Oldman leads a star cast in a film excellently directed by Tomas Alfredson (Leave the one on the right in). It’s a slow-burning, old-fashioned thriller that’s constantly intriguing. Bridget O’Conner and Peter Straughan do an exceptional job adapting classic source material. Despite praise from critics, it didn’t hit everyone, due to the sluggishness that manifested itself especially around 2011 against a growing increase in relentless movies aimed at reducing attention span.

Grey

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Here is a curved ball. It was pretty underrated for me. He was often rejected like Liam Neeson did Taken with wolves. In reality, the film feels a lot more like a mixture of literal and allegorical battle with the heartache of the loss. It is mere vanity but a brutally effective fight for survival in extreme conditions against a fierce animal foe. A pack of wolves eliminates one by one the survivors of a plane crash in almost uninhabitable snow conditions. The set and the enemy make for a gripping film, but Neeson’s performance (as an almost desperate hunter who finds his will to survive) is superimposed on the actors’ new heartbreak in a film that was made shortly after having lost his wife Natasha Richardson in a tragic accident.

Drive

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This almost instantaneous cult hit became that year the film “have you seen…” among cinephiles. An ultra-sleek neo-noir about a stoic moonlighting stuntman as a runaway chauffeur who owed a lot to Michael Mann. Nic Winding Refn had cult fans of his Pusher series and Bronson in particular, but Drive really drew attention to him. It was, and still is, his most accessible “mainstream” film, and as such, its sequels have tended to alienate as much as they have certainly won over. Additionally, Ryan Gosling saw his popularity increase dramatically, especially with male audiences when he suddenly became Hollywood’s coolest mofo. A superb soundtrack, stunning visuals and a sensational cast (including Carey Mulligan, Oscar Isaac, Bryan Cranston, Albert Brooks and Ron Perlman) combine for a film that remains one of the best of the past decade.

Killer Joe

Killer-Joe

Another neo-noir. It also marked one of two key year films for Matthew McConaughey. It was really the start of the McConaussance. After spending many years in mediocre romantic comedies, which normally had him leaning askew on the poster (sometimes back to back with the female lead), he took a decisive turn and started making darker cinema. , more mature and stimulating. There was the Lincoln lawyer also but Killer Joe was nicer for me (Mud, by Jeff Nichols came the following year). A dark story of deception and attempted murder as an indebted double criminal (Emile Hirsch) finds himself embroiled in a cop / hitman with a reputation that precedes him. McConnaughey revel in his enigmatic and villainous role. He is sublime and the rest of the cast too. It’s also a great comeback for one of the masters of cinema, William Friedkin. He has since failed to match her.

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Duncan Jones made a great debut in Moon, with another beautifully contained and engaging sci-fi thriller. Here Jake Gyllanhaal does groundhog day with a twist, having to repeat the same last moments before an explosion wipes out a train full of passengers. It’s up to him to find the bomber and prevent it from striking again. It’s complex, winding and well designed. Gyllenhaal is huge and the nature of his role and the simulation are tragic. The fate of those in the simulation is inevitable as they fight for the future of the next potential victims of the bomber. To the surprise of many, this was completely ignored by the Major Awards.

warrior

Warrior-600x338

Family drama meets MMA brawl. Tommy Conlon (Tom Hardy), an ex-marine, haunted by his past, returns home, setting his sights on MMA glory, enlisting his father (Nick Nolte) to train him. Meanwhile, once a promising fighter-turned-teacher Brendan Conlon (Joel Edgerton), the estranged older brother makes a return to low-level fighting to make ends meet. A meeting of brothers in the ring is inevitable. warrior is brilliant, anchored by outstanding performances from Hardy, Edgerton and Nolte (particularly brilliant). It’s exhausting, captivating and the fights are exceptionally well done too. I found this one more exciting than The fighter, which covered similar caveats (in this true story with Christian Bale and Mark Wahlberg from 2010).

Shame

Shame

Steve McQueen and Michael Fassbender recombined after their star flick Hunger (2008) with Shame. Fass plays a sex addict whose hedonistic activities are disrupted by the arrival of his rebellious sister (Carey Mulligan). As we’d expect and appreciate now, McQueen is uncompromising in his austere character study and likewise, Fassbender is fully committed to his complex role. Mulligan is also exceptional. It’s a mind-boggling movie that won’t suit all tastes given its flawless take on a sort of addiction not often covered in the movies (realistically anyway). It’s a perfect cohesion between the director and the cast.

SEE ALSO: Back to 2001: ten essential films from twenty years ago

What are your favorite movies of 2011. Let us know on our social media @ flickeringmyth…

Tom Jolliffe is an award-winning screenwriter and avid film buff. It has a number of films on DVD / VOD around the world and several releases in 2021, including Renegades (Lee Majors, Danny Trejo, Michael Pare, Tiny Lister, Ian Ogilvy and Billy Murray), Crackdown, When Darkness Falls and The War. of Worlds: The Attack (Vincent Regan). Find more information on the best personal site you have ever seen … https://www.instagram.com/jolliffeproductions/



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ESSENTIAL movies for you to enjoy Halloween – Designer Women https://whaleeaters.org/essential-movies-for-you-to-enjoy-halloween-designer-women/ https://whaleeaters.org/essential-movies-for-you-to-enjoy-halloween-designer-women/#respond Sat, 30 Oct 2021 19:00:50 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/essential-movies-for-you-to-enjoy-halloween-designer-women/ Halloween is a controversial date in Brazil, but it is celebrated by some people. The climate of terror mingles with the innocence of the children who demand sweets – through threats of vandalism, of course – and creates a unique rendezvous. With that in mind, I spoke to the CinePOP newsroom and we’ve put together […]]]>

Halloween is a controversial date in Brazil, but it is celebrated by some people. The climate of terror mingles with the innocence of the children who demand sweets – through threats of vandalism, of course – and creates a unique rendezvous. With that in mind, I spoke to the CinePOP newsroom and we’ve put together a list of must-see movies this Halloween. To verify!

The Night of the Deadly Pranks (1986)

This slasher movie takes a group of college students to a mansion on an island, where they plan to spend April Fool’s Day vacation. The house is full of April Fools’ Day pranks, like screaming Styrofoam chairs and pillows. But, out of nowhere, friends begin to mysteriously die. It’s fun and quite uncomfortable.

Abracadabra (1993)

Enjoy watching:

Dear fan, this movie brings a more innocent and fun take on Halloween. Designed to be a Halloween special for the Disney Channel, the Abracadabra script ended up gaining the attention of executives, who saw the potential and gave the go-ahead to go to the movies. The plot begins in the 1960s, when three witch sisters decide to steal children’s vitality in order to stay young forever. The act provokes revolt and they are imprisoned for 30 years. In 1993, a young man travels to the town of Salem and ends up releasing the witches again.

Saw the madwoman in Monsters (1987)

Written by Shane Black (Lethal Weapon), this horror comedy is a genius cult classic that plays directly with all of Universal’s classic monsters. A group of self-proclaimed teenagers from Monster Patrol find a diary written by Van Helsing, which warns of the invasion of the city by monsters, intending to retrieve a mystical amulet to carry out their evil plan. The group then decides to use their skills and knowledge of the monster universe to help adults in the most unexpected fight in cinema. Originally released on video, the film was so successful that it ended up in theaters. In addition, the makeup and costumes of the monsters were done by the legendary Stan Winston.

Ghostbusters (1984)

The second biggest box office of 1984, The Ghostbusters became a true icon of the 1980s. Stirring with the supernatural, a group of parascientists band together to investigate supernatural cases and capture ghosts in New York City, proving they don’t. are not charlatans. Their accomplishments begin to have repercussions and business is rife, until one day a threat greater than anything they’ve ever faced: the dreaded Zuul. Despite being a comedy film that helped revive Bill Murray’s career, Ghostbusters manages to unite the whole spirit of Halloween. Stranger Things says so.

Toy Killer (1988)

It’s impossible to talk about Halloween without thinking about children and horror. Therefore, Toy Killer is virtually the perfect example of the cruelty of the supernatural. After being shot by police, serial killer Charles Lee Ray breaks into a toy store, where he performs a Haitian ritual to transfer his soul into the body of a “Good Guy” doll, a sales phenomenon at the children. After the ritual is complete, Chucky is ultimately purchased by a widowed mother, who offers it as a gift to her six-year-old son, Andy Barclay. From then on, the doll comes to life and begins to touch the terror in the life of the poor boy.

Charlie Brown and the Big Pumpkin (1966)

In the 1960s, Turma do Minduim’s specials achieved worldwide success. In Brazil, they didn’t arrive until the 1980s. With a lot of sensitivity and unlike the other productions on this list, Charlie Brown and the Great Pumpkin shows the boy Lino excited for Halloween. Unlike other children, he does not look forward to the candy hunt or the costumes, but rather to see The Big Pumpkin, which for him would be a kind of Santa Claus, who tries to prove his thesis to the Gang, but fails and ends up being ridiculed. It’s a story about being mature in the middle of Halloween, as well as being cute.

Ghosts Have Fun (1988)

There’s no way to make a Halloween list without having at least one Tim Burton movie. Mixing comedy and horror and even musical, this film is 100% politically incorrect and puts the dead in control. It tells the story of a couple who have a car accident, die and peacefully haunt a house. Until a posh family buys the property and begins to take the peace of lairs, which call on a hideous creature called Beetlejuice (Michael Keaton).

Panic (1996)

Starring Neve Campbell, David Arquette, Courteney Cox, Matthew Lillard, Skeet Ulrich, Rose McGowan and Drew Barrymore, the film revolutionized the slasher subgenre by featuring Sidney (Neve Campbell) as the target student of a mysterious killer inspired by the cinema that killed its victims of horror. The film while innovative satirizes the horror genre, but the strong inspiration of the Halloween franchise makes it a good choice for this October 31st.

Halloween (1978 – present)

Begun in 1978 as Halloween: Night of Terror, John Carpenter’s franchise spanned 11 films. Some are wonderful, while others are as offensive as they are bad (I’m talking to you, Halloween 6 – The Last Revenge). But the truth is, Halloween horror practically comes with this franchise, which takes serial killer Michael Myers after Laura Strode, or his own niece, or relatives of the Strode family. Always attacking on Halloween night, the Assassin is one of the icons of pop culture and it’s worth taking the day to check out the franchise.

Make sure you watch:


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Five essential movies to watch in Boston https://whaleeaters.org/five-essential-movies-to-watch-in-boston/ Wed, 20 Oct 2021 23:43:56 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/five-essential-movies-to-watch-in-boston/ The 21st most populous city in the United States, Boston has had an outsized influence on the country’s history. From being a key location in the fight against the British, to an industrial powerhouse, to the home of John F. Kennedy, The Cradle of Liberty has been part of it all. Today, it has one […]]]>

The 21st most populous city in the United States, Boston has had an outsized influence on the country’s history. From being a key location in the fight against the British, to an industrial powerhouse, to the home of John F. Kennedy, The Cradle of Liberty has been part of it all.

Today, it has one of the best start-up cultures in the United States outside of the Bay Area, as well as one of the most livable cities. His influence also extended to the world of cinema; especially when it comes to stories of brash masculinity.

It’s logic. People of Irish descent form the largest ethnic group in the city, accounting for 15% of all residents. As a result, many films shot in Boston explore the meaning of Irish American identity in much the same way as New York and Italian Americans. While the Irish historically faced oppression before ascending to the highest positions of power, these films often portray the Irish-American as an unloved outsider, ready to fight against all odds. As an Englishman of Irish descent myself, Boston movies can often seem like some of the most relevant; especially the need for second-generation people to overcompensate somewhat to assert their identity.

From gangster stories to historical dramas to neo-noir thrillers, cinematic portrayals of Boston are filled with moral complexities and fiery performances. We’ve created a list of our five favorites below. Read on to see what we picked.

The dead

Part of the reason The dead is so great is that, like many of Martin Scorsese’s gangster movies, it’s also hilariously funny. A strong Italian-American Catholic, Scorsese manages to locate the essentials of Boston’s Catholic Irish character and exaggerate them to the nth degree. Mark Wahlberg in particular, who would later dwell heavily on Boston’s negative stereotypes in the Ted movies, has a lot of fun playing with the accent.

Wahlberg is part of an all-time cast, which also includes professional jurors Alec Baldwin, Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon, Jack Nicholson and Ray Winstone. Together they play both sides of a war between the Irish mob and the Boston police. Based on the Hong Kong film hellish business, a member of the police infiltrates the mafia and vice versa, making this a deadly game of cat and mouse that is both exhilarating and terrifying.

Goodwill hunting

You can’t talk about Boston without mentioning Ben Affleck and Matt Damon. These speedy friends were both born in the greater city area and have multiple credits between them, either writing, directing, or starring in films set in Boston. Goodwill hunting was the movie that put them on the map. Directed by Gus Van Sant, it’s the story of an unsung mathematical genius who works at MIT as a janitor and spends his free time getting tattoos with his friends.

When he gets into a drunken fight, he is put in therapy, facing Robin Williams, the best of his career. It’s through these conversations that the film really sings; explore the contours of masculinity and what it means to live a meaningful life. It is an essential film of the Irish diaspora: scholars have pointed out that Goodwill hunting perpetuates the sectarian malaise that plagues the whole of the UK and Ireland with the Catholic testament’s distrust of the predominantly Protestant professors at MIT.

Gone baby gone

It’s no surprise that Ben Affleck’s directorial debut is set in his hometown. Gone baby gonebased on the novel by Dennis Lehane, is set in the Dorchester neighborhood and stars his brother Casey Affleck as Patrick Kenzie, a private detective tasked with finding a missing girl.

Boston is seen here as a dark and forbidden city, where the grudges seem endless and probably go all the way back to Letterkenny. Here, Affleck is genuinely interested in exploring every nook and cranny of the city, giving us a full portrait of what this demise means to its people. If Casey Affleck is by far the best actor of the two brothers, as evidenced by his devastating performance in Manchester by the sea party baby party allowed him to really stretch, putting in one of the best performances.

Affleck returned to Boston twice; with a direct thriller The city and historical gangster movie Live the night. He will come back. After all, it’s his house.

Friends of Eddie Coyle

More gangsters never really reach the top. They just carry on with their odd jobs throughout their careers. There’s never really been a better understanding of this than in Peter Yates Friends of Eddie Coyle, starring Robert Mitchum as a shrunken con artist who faces jail time.

The joy of the film lies in the performance of Mitchum, who knows everything, calms down and takes the story into his own hands. We follow him as he faces a strong moral decision between denouncing his friends and upholding his own moral code. The film is a true product of the 70s in its willingness to explore the darker side of mob life.

Projector

Much of Irish identity is tied to the Catholic Church. They took their Church with them when they came to Boston, making most of the city’s Irish-Americans Catholics as well. Projector, based on the true story of how the Boston Globe’s “Spotlight” team uncovered widespread and systemic child sexual abuse within the city’s Catholic Church, shows the dark side of a such unshakable confidence in the institutions.

Much of the Irish masculinity never talks about your problems, which is reflected in the residents’ low-key nature when it comes to giving anything to reporters. Projector slowly breaks down these and other hurdles facing journalists through good old-fashioned detective work; showing how powerful it can be to hold the truth in power. Perhaps the most thoughtful Boston film on this list, Projector was a huge hit, winning Best Picture in 2016.


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50 Essential Movies For Kids https://whaleeaters.org/50-essential-movies-for-kids/ https://whaleeaters.org/50-essential-movies-for-kids/#respond Mon, 04 Oct 2021 06:48:06 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/?p=320 (Photo by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection. Thumbnail image: 20th Century Fox Film Corp. All rights reserved. Courtesy: Everett Collection.; Warner Brothers/courtesy Everett Collection; MGM.) Looking to enrich your kid’s viewing habits? Or if you’re under 13 yourself, love movies, and you want to watch some of the best ever made, take it […]]]>

(Photo by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection. Thumbnail image: 20th Century Fox Film Corp. All rights reserved. Courtesy: Everett Collection.; Warner Brothers/courtesy Everett Collection; MGM.)

Looking to enrich your kid’s viewing habits? Or if you’re under 13 yourself, love movies, and you want to watch some of the best ever made, take it from us when we list 50 Essential Movies For Kids!

These are not just great children’s movies, but movies that play well for the curious and growing mind. While all these movies are classics and can be seen at any age, some have stronger themes than others that would play better during upper years. So, we separated the movies in suggested age categories:

Ages 1-5: Kids may not actively recall everything from this age, but a good baseline is fundamental in developing a healthy appetite for movies. Here we feature colorful classics (The Wizard of Oz), fun adventures (Chicken Run), and tales as old as time (Beauty and the Beast).

Ages 6-9: As more time is devoted to school and outside life, movies become more of an escape, and their power to transport starts to become apparent. Don’t miss out on epic quests (Star Wars), wish fulfillment (Home Alone), and dazzling fantasies (Spirited Away).

Ages 10-12: The magic window, the time in life when movies can move and change tweens, and stick for the rest of time. A good era for the classic portrayals of youth (The 400 Blows), face-melting action (Raiders of the Lost Ark), and romance (Romeo & Juliet).

Whether you’re a parent looking for a moral, entertaining movie night with your kids, or you’re a young student of movies making the leap on your own, check out these 50 Essential Movies For Kids!


#50

Adjusted Score: 105021%

Critics Consensus: Enchanting, sweepingly romantic, and featuring plenty of wonderful musical numbers, Beauty and the Beast is one of Disney’s most elegant animated offerings.

Synopsis: A French maiden takes the place of her captured father in the enchanted castle of an accursed prince, and her… [More]

#49

Adjusted Score: 104502%

Critics Consensus: Chicken Run has all the charm of Nick Park’s Wallace & Gromit, and something for everybody. The voice acting is fabulous, the slapstick is brilliant, and the action sequences are spectacular.

Synopsis: A dashing rooster and the hen he loves lead an escape from a farm in 1950s England…. [More]

#48

Adjusted Score: 101887%

Critics Consensus: Beautifully animated, smartly written, and stocked with singalong songs, Frozen adds another worthy entry to the Disney canon.

Synopsis: A fearless young princess (Kristen Bell) sets out with a mountaineer (Jonathan Groff) to find her sister (Idina Menzel), whose… [More]

#47

Adjusted Score: 100513%

Critics Consensus: Kiki’s Delivery Service is a heartwarming, gorgeously-rendered tale of a young witch discovering her place in the world.

Synopsis: Kiki and her talking cat, Jiji, move to a seaside town in accordance with her village’s tradition for witches in… [More]

#46

Adjusted Score: 99050%

Critics Consensus: Alfonso Cuarón adapts Frances Hodgson Burnett’s novel with a keen sense of magic realism, vividly recreating the world of childhood as seen through the characters.

Synopsis: A British Army captain’s (Liam Cunningham) 10-year-old daughter (Liesel Matthews) irks the headmistress (Eleanor Bron) of her girls school in… [More]

#45

Adjusted Score: 93188%

Critics Consensus: The Muppet Movie, the big-screen debut of Jim Henson’s plush creations, is smart, lighthearted, and fun for all ages.

Synopsis: Fried-frogs-legs franchisers (Charles Durning, Austin Pendleton) follow Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy and company to Hollywood…. [More]

#44

Adjusted Score: 98648%

Critics Consensus: My Neighbor Totoro is a heartwarming, sentimental masterpiece that captures the simple grace of childhood.

Synopsis: Two sisters encounter a mythical forest sprite and its woodland companions when they move to rural Japan…. [More]

#43

Adjusted Score: 97216%

Critics Consensus: The Red Balloon invests the simplest of narratives with spectacular visual inventiveness, making for a singularly wondrous portrait of innocence.

Synopsis: A red balloon with a life of its own follows a boy around Paris…. [More]

#42

Adjusted Score: 111385%

Critics Consensus: With its involving story and characters, vibrant art, and memorable songs, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs set the animation standard for decades to come.

Synopsis: A wicked queen casts a spell upon a beautiful young girl in this Disney adaptation of the classic fairy tale…. [More]

#41

Adjusted Score: 106907%

Critics Consensus: Entertaining as it is innovative, Toy Story reinvigorated animation while heralding the arrival of Pixar as a family-friendly force to be reckoned with.

Synopsis: A flashy new action hero’s arrival creates upset in a community of toys that comes to life when people are… [More]

#40

Adjusted Score: 106424%

Critics Consensus: Wall-E‘s stellar visuals testify once again to Pixar’s ingenuity, while its charming star will captivate younger viewers — and its timely story offers thought-provoking subtext.

Synopsis: After years of tidying up an Earth devoid of humanity, a robot janitor (Ben Burtt) meets a mechanical scout and… [More]

#39

Adjusted Score: 118424%

Critics Consensus: An absolute masterpiece whose groundbreaking visuals and deft storytelling are still every bit as resonant, The Wizard of Oz is a must-see film for young and old.

Synopsis: After a tornado whisks Kansas farm girl Dorothy (Judy Garland) to a magic land, she must travel to the Emerald… [More]


#38

Adjusted Score: 102099%

Critics Consensus: The rare family-friendly feature with a heart as big as its special effects budget, Babe offers timeless entertainment for viewers of all ages.

Synopsis: An Australian farmer (James Cromwell) adopts a piglet that becomes a champion sheepherder. Live action/animatronics…. [More]

#37

Adjusted Score: 104149%

Critics Consensus: Inventive, funny, and breathlessly constructed, Back to the Future is a rousing time-travel adventure with an unforgettable spirit.

Synopsis: A teen (Michael J. Fox) takes a crackpot’s (Christopher Lloyd) DeLorean time machine to 1955 and sees his parents in… [More]

#36

Adjusted Score: 114518%

Critics Consensus: Coco‘s rich visual pleasures are matched by a thoughtful narrative that takes a family-friendly — and deeply affecting — approach to questions of culture, family, life, and death.

Synopsis: Accompanied by a charming trickster, a young musician embarks on an extraordinary journey through the colorful Land of the Dead… [More]

#35

Adjusted Score: 113972%

Critics Consensus: Playing as both an exciting sci-fi adventure and a remarkable portrait of childhood, Steven Spielberg’s touching tale of a homesick alien remains a piece of movie magic for young and old.

Synopsis: A boy’s close encounter with an alien stranded on Earth leads to a unique friendship in Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-winning film…. [More]

#34

Adjusted Score: 90462%

Critics Consensus: A movie full of Yuletide cheer, Elf is a spirited, good-natured family comedy, and it benefits greatly from Will Ferrell’s funny and charming performance as one of Santa’s biggest helpers.

Synopsis: Adopted as a baby by one of Santa’s elves (Bob Newhart), a man (Will Ferrell) leaves the workshop to search… [More]

#33

Adjusted Score: 101015%

Critics Consensus: Fantastic Mr. Fox is a delightfully funny feast for the eyes with multi-generational appeal — and it shows Wes Anderson has a knack for animation.

Synopsis: After three nefarious farmers declare war on them, a sly fox (George Clooney) rallies his animal neighbors to fight back…. [More]

#32

Adjusted Score: 81617%

Critics Consensus: The Goonies is an energetic, sometimes noisy mix of Spielbergian sentiment and funhouse tricks that will appeal to kids and nostalgic adults alike.

Synopsis: Coastal Oregon kids (Sean Astin, Josh Brolin, Jeff Cohen) follow the treasure map of pirate One-Eyed Willie past his deadly… [More]

#31

Adjusted Score: 88995%

Critics Consensus: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone adapts its source material faithfully while condensing the novel’s overstuffed narrative into an involving — and often downright exciting — big-screen magical caper.

Synopsis: An orphan (Daniel Radcliffe) attends a school of witchcraft and wizardry and pieces together the mystery of his parents’ deaths…. [More]

#30

Adjusted Score: 69691%

Critics Consensus: Home Alone uneven but frequently funny premise stretched unreasonably thin is buoyed by Macaulay Culkin’s cute performance and strong supporting stars.

Synopsis: Accidentally left by his Paris-bound family, an 8-year-old (Macaulay Culkin) makes mincemeat of two burglars (Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern) in… [More]

#29

Adjusted Score: 105472%

Critics Consensus: Boasting dazzling animation, a script with surprising dramatic depth, and thrilling 3-D sequences, How to Train Your Dragon soars.

Synopsis: A misfit Viking teenager (Jay Baruchel) sees a chance to change the course of his clan’s future when he befriends… [More]

#28

Adjusted Score: 116066%

Critics Consensus: Inventive, gorgeously animated, and powerfully moving, Inside Out is another outstanding addition to the Pixar library of modern animated classics.

Synopsis: An 11-year-old girl’s (Kaitlyn Dias) five emotions try to guide her through a difficult transition after she moves from the… [More]

#27

Adjusted Score: 91895%

Critics Consensus: Utterly predictable and wholly of its time, but warm, sincere, and difficult to resist, due in large part to Pat Morita and Ralph Macchio’s relaxed chemistry.

Synopsis: A New Jersey teen (Ralph Macchio) moves to California, meets bullies and learns karate from a handyman, Mr. Miyagi (Noriyuki… [More]

#26

Adjusted Score: 102170%

Critics Consensus: The endearing Iron Giant tackles ambitious topics and complex human relationships with a steady hand and beautifully animated direction from Brad Bird.

Synopsis: A malevolent government agent threatens to destroy the friendship between a boy and a huge alien robot…. [More]

#25

Adjusted Score: 107409%

Critics Consensus: Boasting beautiful animation, a charming voice cast, laugh-a-minute gags, and a surprisingly thoughtful story, The Lego Movie is colorful fun for all ages.

Synopsis: An ordinary LEGO figurine (Chris Pratt), thought to be the key to saving the world, is accompanied by a fellowship… [More]

#24

Adjusted Score: 77306%

Critics Consensus: Little Manhattan is a sweet story of young love that provides an enlightening if pragmatic view on love and courtship.

Synopsis: A New York boy (Josh Hutcherson) finds his first love, while the marriage between his parents (Bradley Whitford, Cynthia Nixon)… [More]

#23

Adjusted Score: 90667%

Critics Consensus: Danny DeVito-directed version of Matilda is odd, charming, and while the movie diverges from Roald Dahl, it nonetheless captures the book’s spirit.

Synopsis: A little girl (Mara Wilson) develops extraordinary mental abilities, despite neglectful parents (Danny DeVito, Rhea Perlman) and a brutal headmistress…. [More]

#22

Adjusted Score: 83561%

Critics Consensus: A magical journey about the power of a young boy’s imagination to save a dying fantasy land, The NeverEnding Story remains a much-loved kids adventure.

Synopsis: A New York schoolboy (Barret Oliver) escapes into a book about a boy warrior (Noah Hathaway) and an empress (Tami… [More]

#21

Adjusted Score: 111879%

Critics Consensus: Paddington 2 honors its star’s rich legacy with a sweet-natured sequel whose adorable visuals are matched by a story perfectly balanced between heartwarming family fare and purely enjoyable all-ages adventure.

Synopsis: One fine day, Paddington spots a pop-up book in an antique shop — the perfect present for his beloved aunt’s… [More]

#20

Adjusted Score: 104828%

Critics Consensus: A delightfully postmodern fairy tale, The Princess Bride is a deft, intelligent mix of swashbuckling, romance, and comedy that takes an age-old damsel-in-distress story and makes it fresh.

Synopsis: A storybook stableboy turns pirate (Cary Elwes) and rescues his beloved (Robin Wright), who is about to marry a dreadful… [More]

#19

Adjusted Score: 68468%

Critics Consensus: It may be shamelessly derivative and overly nostalgic, but The Sandlot is nevertheless a genuinely sweet and funny coming-of-age adventure.

Synopsis: The best baseball player (Mike Vitar) in the neighborhood helps a new kid (Thomas Guiry) with his clumsy ball-handling…. [More]

#18

Adjusted Score: 103523%

Critics Consensus: Spirited Away is a dazzling, enchanting, and gorgeously drawn fairy tale that will leave viewers a little more curious and fascinated by the world around them.

Synopsis: Lost in a forest, a 10-year-old girl (Daveigh Chase) meets animals, ghosts and weird creatures…. [More]

#17

Adjusted Score: 97796%

Critics Consensus: A kinetic and fun movie that’s sure to thrill children of all ages.

Synopsis: When a technical genius kidnaps retired spies (Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino), only their children can save them…. [More]

#16

Adjusted Score: 108171%

Critics Consensus: A legendarily expansive and ambitious start to the sci-fi saga, George Lucas opened our eyes to the possibilities of blockbuster filmmaking and things have never been the same.

Synopsis: Robots and other allies help a youth (Mark Hamill) and a space jockey (Harrison Ford) rescue a rebel princess (Carrie… [More]

#15

Adjusted Score: 96684%

Critics Consensus: Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is strange yet comforting, full of narrative detours that don’t always work but express the film’s uniqueness.

Synopsis: A poor boy (Peter Ostrum) and his grandfather (Jack Albertson) win a tour through the marvelous factory of a wily… [More]


#14

Adjusted Score: 105922%

Critics Consensus: A seminal French New Wave film that offers an honest, sympathetic, and wholly heartbreaking observation of adolescence without trite nostalgia.

Synopsis: Neglected by his parents (Claire Maurier, Albert Remy), Parisian schoolboy Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud) runs away from home and turns… [More]

#13

Adjusted Score: 90195%

Critics Consensus: A warm, family-friendly underdog story, featuring terrific supporting performances from Keke Palmer, Laurence Fishburne, and Angela Bassett.

Synopsis: Akeelah (Keke Palmer), an 11-year-old girl living in South Los Angeles, discovers she has a talent for spelling, which she… [More]

#12

Adjusted Score: 99756%

Critics Consensus: Louis Malle’s autobiographical tale of a childhood spent in a WWII boarding school is a beautifully realized portrait of friendship and youth.

Synopsis: Filmmaker Louis Malle tells of the friendship between a Jewish boy (Raphael Fejto) and a Roman Catholic boy (Gaspard Manesse)… [More]

#11

Adjusted Score: 100814%

Critics Consensus: Hugo is an extravagant, elegant fantasy with an innocence lacking in many modern kids’ movies, and one that emanates an unabashed love for the magic of cinema.

Synopsis: A resourceful orphaned boy (Asa Butterfield) and a bookish girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) set out on a quest to unlock… [More]

#10

Adjusted Score: 77425%

Critics Consensus: A charming, quirky, and often funny comedy.

Synopsis: A gawky teenager (Jon Heder) from an odd family (Jon Gries, Aaron Ruell) helps his new friend run for class… [More]

#9

Adjusted Score: 90071%

Critics Consensus: Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure brings Paul Reubens’ famous character to the big screen intact, along with enough inspired silliness to dazzle children of all ages.

Synopsis: Childlike Pee-wee (Paul Reubens) loses his vintage bicycle and embarks on a cross-country adventure to get it back…. [More]

#8

Adjusted Score: 101753%

Critics Consensus: Queen of Katwe is a feel-good movie of uncommon smarts and passion, and outstanding performances by Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelowo help to elevate the film past its cliches.

Synopsis: Missionary Robert Katende (David Oyelowo) mentors young chess prodigy Phiona Mutesi (Madina Nalwanga) in the slum of Katwe in Kampala,… [More]

#7

Adjusted Score: 103737%

Critics Consensus: Featuring bravura set pieces, sly humor, and white-knuckle action, Raiders of the Lost Ark is one of the most consummately entertaining adventure pictures of all time.

Synopsis: Globe-trotting archaeologist Indiana Jones races the Nazis for possession of a legendary religious artifact…. [More]

#6

Adjusted Score: 98600%

Critics Consensus: The solid leads and arresting visuals make a case for Zeffirelli’s Romeo and Juliet as the definitive cinematic adaptation of the play.

Synopsis: Shakespeare’s tragic Renaissance teenagers (Leonard Whiting, Olivia Hussey) fall in love despite their families…. [More]

#5

Adjusted Score: 82127%

Critics Consensus: Though undeniably sentimental and predictable, Rudy succeeds with an uplifting spirit and determination.

Synopsis: With heart and determination an Illinois youth (Sean Astin) tackles shortcomings to play Notre Dame football…. [More]

#4

Adjusted Score: 118276%

Critics Consensus: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse matches bold storytelling with striking animation for a purely enjoyable adventure with heart, humor, and plenty of superhero action.

Synopsis: Bitten by a radioactive spider, teenager Miles Morales suddenly develops mysterious powers that transform him into Spider-Man. He must now… [More]

#3

Adjusted Score: 93658%

Critics Consensus: Time Bandits is a remarkable time-travel fantasy from Terry Gilliam, who utilizes fantastic set design and homemade special effects to create a vivid, original universe.

Synopsis: Cosmic dwarfs take a boy on an odyssey featuring Robin Hood (John Cleese), Napoleon, King Agamemnon (Sean Connery)…. [More]

#2

Adjusted Score: 100570%

Critics Consensus: Buoyed by Robert Wise’s dazzling direction, Leonard Bernstein’s score, and Stephen Sondheim’s lyrics, West Side Story remains perhaps the most iconic of all the Shakespeare adaptations to visit the big screen.

Synopsis: Rival New York City gangs affect the love of a young man (Richard Beymer) and woman (Natalie Wood) from each… [More]

#1

Adjusted Score: 96247%

Critics Consensus: With a deliciously wicked performance from Angelica Huston and imaginative puppetry by Jim Henson’s creature shop, Nicolas Roeg’s dark and witty movie captures the spirit of Roald Dahl’s writing like few other adaptations.

Synopsis: A Norwegian (Mai Zetterling) and her grandson (Jasen Fisher) outwit British witches after one (Anjelica Huston) turns him into a… [More]


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21 essential movies about Black lives on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon and more https://whaleeaters.org/21-essential-movies-about-black-lives-on-netflix-hulu-amazon-and-more/ https://whaleeaters.org/21-essential-movies-about-black-lives-on-netflix-hulu-amazon-and-more/#respond Mon, 04 Oct 2021 06:17:25 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/?p=292 Three years ago, cinephile Adam Davie started building a Letterboxd recommendation list of films focused on Black lives. His hobby became a massive undertaking: His list now includes more than 1,700 movies, largely with consensus ratings of three stars or higher, broken down by genre to make it easier to navigate. “I thought this was […]]]>

Three years ago, cinephile Adam Davie started building a Letterboxd recommendation list of films focused on Black lives. His hobby became a massive undertaking: His list now includes more than 1,700 movies, largely with consensus ratings of three stars or higher, broken down by genre to make it easier to navigate.

“I thought this was going to be for me to reference, just for myself, because I was upset I couldn’t find anything like this on the entire internet,” Davie tells Polygon. “You can search for ‘Best Black Films of the 1990s’ or whatever, but there’ll be 10 or 20 films total. I wanted something that would encompass the entire black experience. So I thought, ‘If you’re upset about this, then why don’t you just do it yourself? If it’s motivating you that much, obviously it’s something you should take on.’”

Polygon recently spent a couple of hours talking with Davie, and we asked him to curate a list for us, picking one standout movie from each of his genre categories — not the absolute best pick in any genre, but a favorite he’d personally recommend. (Note that the genre classifications come from Letterboxd.)

Along the way, Davie limited himself to films where he felt like at least one black character’s perspective was key to the narrative. Many movies deal with black lives and problems from white points of view, but as Davie puts it, “I wanted these films to be centered not just around a black character who was expendable, but about black stories, whether they were defined by racism or not … It’s a labor of love, it’s something I really enjoy, and it seems like people are getting some benefit out of it.”

This interview has been transcribed from a longer conversation, and edited for clarity and concision.

Action: Mandingo

With this list as a whole, it would have been very easy to just choose the highest-rated films in any category. Like here, it might be Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse. But a lot of people have already seen those higher-rated films, so I picked an exploitation film from 1975: Mandingo. It’s a film that influenced Quentin Tarantino when he made Django Unchained. I chose it simply because it’s exploitative, it’s shameful, and it’s obscene, but it perfectly describes the period these characters are living in. It’s about a slave owner who purchases a slave to train for bare-knuckle fighting, what’s called “Mandingo fighting” in the film.

One of the things that interests me here is the way black bodies are used for sport, but never given a concern outside of what they can do for white audiences. This is something we’re living with right now. A year or so ago, LeBron James stood up and made a statement regarding the killing of an unarmed African-American man, and a commentator from Fox News, Laura Ingraham, told him to shut up and dribble. And less than a week ago, Drew Brees, the quarterback of the New Orleans Saints said — he’s officially walked this back, but at the time, he said he’ll never agree with someone who doesn’t stand for the flag, because it means so much to him. And the same commentator said, “Well, he definitely has a right to his opinion!” The hypocrisy was so apparent. That’s just one of the things I thought of when I watched this film.

I know there are a lot of people who don’t like films that exploit black or white characters. If someone’s repulsed by it, that’s the response that they should have. This was a repulsive period in American history. No one who decided to own slaves or condone what you see in this film should be applauded. This film doesn’t applaud it — it’s brutal in its treatment of the antebellum South in general.

I’m not interested in having a film comfort me. When Hollywood wants to advertise a film, they often describe it as “the feel-good film of the year.” Especially in quarantine, people are talking about comfort films. I’m not comforted by removing reality from what’s in front of me. Just living in America as a black man, I can’t afford to stick my head in the sand. So whether it’s an exploitation film like this, or something uncomfortable by someone like Michael Haneke, one of my favorite filmmakers — these types of films prepare you well for life outside of the movie theater. Life is beautiful, life is grand, but life is also rough at times. And I do find that some of my film selections can prepare me mentally for the complexities of day-to-day life.

Mandingo is streaming on Amazon Prime.

African Cinema: Black Girl

This one’s from Ousmane Sembene in 1966. It’s about a Senegalese woman who’s looking to better her life, so she takes a job as a housemaid to this wealthy white family in France. The film explores a lot of different things: colorism, the exporting of colonialism — Senegal was at one point occupied by the French, until it declared independence, but the French footprint and grip on society is still there. But there’s this hope in the film that because Senegal is free, there will be new opportunities for the woman.

It doesn’t work out that way. She goes to France, looking for a bit of prosperity, thinking she’s going to be able to achieve some form of independence and a new life. But she’s quickly subjugated and relegated to the lower class. And there are these voiceovers of her questioning her decision, and questioning white supremacy, and her role and within it, and whether there’s a way out. I really enjoyed the way it touched on those subjects without feeling overbearing, without providing too much cover for the white family in the film, because it really isn’t about them. You know, she works for them, but it’s her story, and the film is centered around her for its entire duration.

Black Girl is temporarily streaming free on The Criterion Channel.

Animated: Whitewash

This was the toughest category, because there are a lot more animated TV shows than films centered around black characters. This one’s a short film called Whitewash, from 1994, directed by Michael Sporn. It originally aired on HBO. It’s based on a true story about a young girl named Helene Angel, who, on our way home from school one day, was attacked by a group of racist kids who spray-painted her face white. And this was in 1992, in the Bronx. The story just boggles my mind.

So it’s a first introduction to racism, for kids. It’s probably the most terrible thing that can happen to anyone, let alone a young child who is pretty much carefree at that moment in time. She obviously struggles to understand racism in the film, which contrasts her ordeal with that of her grandmother, who she and her older brother live with. Her grandmother paints a picture of how things were when she was growing up in the South: “This is nothing new, and this is how I overcame it.” It has an afterschool-special feel.

When I was thinking of animated films, I was thinking of something meant obviously for children. Even in a lot of black families, discussions about race are commonplace as you get older. But from my perspective, we don’t do a good enough job in this country of dealing with the issue of race early on, and we don’t give children enough credit for being able to understand these issues. You don’t have to give a James Baldwin treatise on what’s going on in the world, or in an individual’s life. But if you can explain to a white child that their black friend was hurt because of XYZ, and it made them feel bad, because something happened simply because of the color of their skin, I believe children will be able to pick up on that.

Later in the film, the young girl’s classmates show up to her house and escort her to school, letting her know she’s not alone. And it’s a pretty multicultural group. It struck me as interesting because that’s exactly what’s happening in the streets today — hopefully racism is no longer an issue where black people are taking up the cause, championing it, while white people recognize it’s a problem, but don’t actually step up to take the necessary steps. We’re all living together. We’re not going back to segregation. We all have to make this work. In the film, there’s a community effort to help this young girl heal. I think the same thing is going to have to happen within our country, to get us back on the right path.

Whitewash is streaming on Amazon Prime.

Adventure: The Last Dragon

I had to look up the definition of adventure, because I normally think of “adventure films” as Star Wars or Superman, and that isn’t how Letterboxd is using it. Turns out adventures can take place on your block, or light-years away. So I went far afield here and picked The Last Dragon. I would say black people are often attracted to kung-fu and martial-arts films, maybe because of the themes of betterment and self-empowerment. This film isn’t very good, but it’s earnest in its aims, and the people within the film are having fun. It’s really trying to do the right thing, even if from a technical or just a narrative standpoint, it doesn’t all come together.

I think it fits into the same narrative as [the Shaw Brothers studio kung-fu films] that the Wu-Tang Clan always talk about, because it merges black culture with hip-hop and R&B. And it’s one of those instantly quotable films. It’s one of those films I always have fun with. It gives me good feelings. I like anti-escapist cinema, but I can’t help but have fun and laugh and smile when I watch this film.

The Last Dragon is available to rent on major digital services.

Crime: Blindspotting

I chose Blindspotting, which is centered around a crime. The main character, Collin, played by Daveed Diggs, is out on parole and looking to reform his life. But he has this friend, Miles, who keeps trying to pull him into scenarios that may jeopardize his freedom. The number one thing I like about it is that there’s an interracial friendship there that feels genuine. You know there’s a healthy respect between these two men, but even even though they’re lifelong friends, there’s still a gap between the two. Miles doesn’t recognize his privilege, and in many cases, the unlimited strikes white men have in society. Whereas for Collin, there is no coming back from a failure. If he screws up again, he might be going to jail for a very long time.

It tackles the issue of race in such a fanciful way. There’s a moment where Daveed directly addresses the camera. He’s talking to a cop, he’s angry, and he’s rapping, in kind of the same way he did in Hamilton. He’s standing up for himself, and against police brutality and racist police tactics. It fits the current moment because of the way he refuses to be defined by or exploited because of his blackness. There’s a target on his back, he recognizes it, and he’s doing his best to avoid it, but it’s not as easy for him as it is for Miles.

If you’ve seen the trailer, you know there’s an unarmed black man running from a cop, and the cop shoots him in the back. Throughout the film, you learn more about this fictional character who has been murdered. There’s a scene where Miles is sitting on the couch with his wife and daughter. And then there’s this news coverage of the event, where the newscaster says something about the victim’s prior arrest, and Miles says, “Oh, no, no parade for you!” or something like that. It blew my mind how aware this film is about the way that even in death, the criminalization and dehumanization of black shooting victims continues to take place. People have been trying to do it with George Floyd. They did it with Trayvon Martin. There are just these little insights in the film, these discussions of the way we view race and decide who is worthy of redemption, and we don’t see those in a lot of films.

Blindspotting is streaming on HBO Max and HBO Now.

Comedy: Support The Girls

This is another section where I decided to go off the beaten path. I chose Support the Girls, Andy Bujalski’s 2019 comedy, because number one, I really like Regina Hall! And because I’ve watched so many films about black people in pain because of racism that it was nice to see a black woman who’s just tired. I believe the film takes place over the course of one day, as she goes through everyday working-class issues. You have this woman who’s a lead, who’s strong, who’s a leader. She has folks, both black and white, who respect her. She’s able to stand up for herself.

But at the same time, she’s not superhero. All too often, I think we depend upon the women in our lives. Just speaking as a black man, we rely on black women to carry much of the load. You can see it’s just wearing on her in this film, for a variety of reasons, but it’s deeply funny, because of her exasperation, and because of the supporting characters. Mainly Haley Lu Richardson, but they all do a great job.

Support the Girls is streaming on Hulu.

Documentary: Lenny Cooke

This is probably the strongest category. Black history is American history, and there’s a ton of stories to choose from. I chose Lenny Cooke, directed by Josh and Benny Safdie. At one point in time, he was the number-one high-school basketball player in the country, and this documentary about him has the Safdie touch. I describe their characters as “unlovable losers,” for a variety of reasons, and you can place Lenny in that category, even though he’s an actual living, breathing person.

He fits nicely into their worldview, and the worlds they’ve created. He’s someone with immense talent and grit, but he can’t get out of his own way. We just saw that in Uncut Gems — a character who just could not get out of his own way. The same in Good Time, there’s someone who’s hellbent on stacking one obstacle on another against himself as he traverses New York City, working to get his brother released from prison. I see a little bit of both of those characters in Lenny Cooke, because at one point, the world was his oyster. LeBron James, for instance, is really good friends with Jay-Z, and Lenny had that same type of relationship with Jay. That’s how big he was. The film is split into two parts: the earlier years, like the late ’90s, early 2000s, when he was on his meteoric rise throughout high school, and then you see what his life is like now.

And I wouldn’t want to be Lenny Cooke on his best day or on my worst. Facing the music right now and looking at what his life could have been — it’s just so depressing, but in that sad way, too. At one point, the world was his oyster, and you just watch him slowly squander it. It’s not as fast-paced as Good Time or Uncut Gems, but the same types of themes are there. And just the fact that they got him to actually sit there and grapple with what could have been, it’s just amazing. I’m so enraptured by this film because I read about him growing up, and I knew how good he was. I’ve seen him play. To just watch all that talent be wasted unsettles me, and makes me feel so bad, both for Lenny and for those around him whose lives could have been uplifted through his talents.

Films like this allow me to remain cognizant of the fact that all all the blessings, all the great things I have in my life right now can be stripped away in an instant. It encourages me to work harder. And it also forces me to think about the ways in black men and women — but mainly, from my perspective, black men — have been boxed into a particular mentality as a result of starvation of education and other opportunity. Biggie Smalls said on his first album, Ready To Die, “Either you’re slinging crack rock or you got a wicked jump shot.” It’s the truth, in certain ways — certain opportunities will be placed in front of you, and if you don’t have anything, you’re just going to grasp at the one thing that seems most appealing.

Lenny probably could have been a rocket scientist or a doctor, but he chose basketball. He was really good at it, but I don’t think he recognized at the time that this gift isn’t given to everyone, and that you have to take advantage of every single opportunity. It’s a stark contrast to the life of someone like LeBron James, who probably hasn’t made the best decision every single step of the way, but he’s taken advantage of every single opportunity. He’s not only uplifted himself, but also others around him, and in the community of Akron. He’s made millions of dollars for tons of people who he may or may not know.

I try to understand that this is dealing with real people’s lives, and not to take delight in it, except maybe in some of the scenes of him playing basketball, before his downfall. It’s just a film that brings me down to earth, that keeps me from getting too wrapped up in the fantasy and the miracle of filmmaking. Here, there are real people’s lives at stake.

Lenny Cooke is streaming on the library-supported Hoopla.

Drama: The Story of a Three-Day Pass

This one’s easy: Melvin van Peebles, The Story of a Three-Day Pass. It’s a great 1967 film about a black soldier stationed in France who begins a relationship with a white French woman. It came out a year after Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner. It makes sense that Melvin van Peebles had to produce this independently in France, because white audiences and white America was just at the point back then where they might be willing to, within the context of a film, accept a black person into their homes. But this film takes things a little further.

You can see that Melvin van Peebles was very much inspired by New Wave techniques and directors. There are a lot of jump cuts and voiceovers, and it feels like he’s thumbing his nose at the system. Interracial relationships weren’t readily accepted in America in the late ’60s, so he’s really taking a bold step here. Just as there’s a freedom with these new filmmaking techniques and the camera work, there’s also a freedom in this character’s life. Maybe he wasn’t initially interested in dating a white woman, but when he has the freedom to do so, he takes advantage of it. At the same time, there’s a stark reminder that he’s a black man from America. When racism rears its ugly head once again, it’s so disappointing. But for this brief moment in time, he’s able to be to be free.

I would love to see other black directors be inspired by the French New Wave, and have their own take on it, but they rarely had the opportunity in the 1960s. This was one of the rare films that really took advantage of that. It’s not quite a masterpiece, but it’s getting there for me.

The Story of a Three-Day Pass is streaming on Fandor and the library-supported Kanopy.

Family: Pariah

This is Dee Rees’ first film, about a young woman who’s gay and grappling with it, because her family is very strict. I would say as a community, black people are becoming more accepting of the LGBTQ community. But at the same time, certain things get in the way, like religion and the awareness that you already have a target on your back as a black man or woman. And then if you come out, that’s automatically another target on you. I think that’s a concern for a lot of black families. You see this family grappling with that in the film. Their young daughter doesn’t come out directly in the film early on, but it’s always there on the periphery. They’re aware things aren’t gonna be easy for her, and they feel like she’s just making things harder for herself. But at the end of the day, the girl, Alike, has to ask whether she’d rather repress her true self, or embrace it and let the chips fall where they may. That’s a big part of the film, because for a good portion of the story, she’s withdrawn and hiding her true self from those around her.

It’s not grim, because there is a reconciliation, and a recognition of the fact that this is who she is. But another thing I love in film is that even when films don’t end on happy notes, it’s just positive that the story is being told. That is important. Regardless of the subject matter, if it’s a story that needs to be told, and someone managed to tell it, that’s uplifting for me. Just the fact that it was able to get in production is a positive thing in of itself. When I think about some of the films that have dour endings, I still celebrate the fact that it was able to get made, because for the longest time, there were gatekeepers who believed no one had any interest in these stories, or they just weren’t worth being told. Which is obviously not true.

Pariah is available to rent on major digital services.

Lakeith Stanfield sits in a glass booth under purple lighting in Boots Riley’s SORRY TO BOTHER YOU.

Photo: Annapurna Pictures

Fantasy: Sorry to Bother You

I love the fact that Sorry to Bother You is such an outlandish story. This poor black guy is just consumed by our capitalistic system. There’s something to be said about this moment when all these occupations are being deemed essential, even though a few months ago, the upper classes and capitalist society overlooked them in terms of wages and the benefits people have been fighting for, like healthcare. This film does a deep, quirky dive into the way capitalism eats away at us, and even more so if you don’t have the means to protect yourself? It’s a battle, in a way, and this film turns it into an actual battle between characters. I just enjoy the fact that Boots Riley is in Hollywood right now, an actual director championing socialism and toppling and overthrowing the system, under the guise of this comedy about a guy working in a phone bank. It’s just so outlandish and tough to describe.

Plus, White Voice is definitely a thing. I don’t even think it’s something I try to put on anymore. It’s an everyday part of my life, because I live in a predominantly white community. There’s that need to make sure you’re accepted, and that’s one way to do it. It’s not just when you’re on the phone, trying to get money out of somebody’s pocket. It’s just one of those ways of coping with a world where white supremacy rules or dictates our every move, how we adjust and cope with the situation we’re dealing with. But it’s used hilariously in the film. I love how he takes some of these ideas that could really be painful for a lot of people, particularly black people, but he puts a humorous spin on it as well. It’s incredibly funny.

Sorry to Bother You is streaming on Hulu.

A car on fire surrounded by crowds of people.

Photo: National Geographic

History: LA 92

Dan Lindsay and T.J. Martin’s documentary LA 92 recounts the Los Angeles riots from 1992. What I love about this film is — so many people today are eager to rewrite history, whether it it’s about a vote they cast in Congress or something they said on social media in the past, something that’s coming back to bite them, because there’s a lot of reckoning taking place right now. In this film, the directors took, I think, a couple thousand hours of footage, leading up to the riots and in the aftermath, and they put it together into a little film that’s under two hours. It’s just so concise, and so full of fury and heartbreak.

But it also shows us that the protests going on right now — this has all happened before, and we’ve refused to deal with it. There are still people today looking at peaceful protests and riots, and commingling the two, and acting like this is something new. But it isn’t. It’s always been there, and people have chosen to ignore it. I love the way the film only uses archival footage to tell the story. Nobody’s able to come in and whitewash history, not just in terms of an actual white person saying, “This is what I would have done, and this is what would happen,” but in terms of actually recasting what really happened. You’re able to see it play out.

One of the things that really upsets me about the film, though, is that it shows America has a really, really hard head, and it just doesn’t learn. There’s a scene in this film where a group of activists and community members are watching the verdicts being read for the cops who beat Rodney King. They’re coming in: not guilty, not guilty, not guilty. You see this man who’s got to be in his 60s or 70s, and he just starts crying. At that moment, I think I lost it too. I can’t imagine — how sad is it as a country that we’ve allowed people like this man to live in this world? He’s probably overcome Jim Crow, been through the civil-rights movement, possibly a world war, and yet he’s still being let down by our society. It disturbs me so much because he’s crying, because he probably had hope. The crime was caught on tape, the cops were brought to court, charges were brought up. It seemed like there might be this one moment in time where America would do the right thing. But they didn’t. And then all hell breaks loose.

There was a woman on social media who gave us an impassioned speech that went viral. Kimberly Latrice Jones. She said the country should be happy that black people just want equality and not revenge. And from my perspective, LA 92 is showing you what happens when people do want revenge. They’ve seen people march, they’ve seen people vote, they’ve seen people engaged in activities designed to affect change, but nothing has come of it. So they say, “You know what, F it, we’re just gonna burn this place down.” It’s white America’s worst nightmare. That’s why certain people are so opposed to the idea of what they think equality is, because they feel like, “Well, if we ever gave them an inch, they’ll try to take a couple yards.” No, it’s just like, “We want to be on equal footing. We’re not looking to establish a new supremacy here, we just want a level playing field.” It’s just disappointing to see America continue to stumble upon itself, when there are so many clear examples of these types of things happening. We watch it repeat itself in movies like LA 92, but hopefully this current time is different.

It’s all archival footage. No voiceovers, nothing. It’s more powerful that way. You get to hear people voice their concerns, their anger, within the moment. You bring in these talking heads, and in this case, they’ve got 25 years to reflect on this and say “Well, it wasn’t really like that. I didn’t really mean it that way.” This way, the events are right in front of you, and you make of it what you will. It’s a clear example of what happens when America doesn’t learn its lessons when it comes to mistreating people of color and marginalized communities.

LA 92 is streaming on Hulu and Netflix.

Horror: The Transfiguration

The Transfiguration is a horror-drama that came out a few years ago, about this young boy reeling from the death of his mother. He also has a fascination with vampires, which factors heavily into the film because as a way of processing his trauma, he’s retreating into this vampire lore. It plays out in such a strange way. One of the things I really enjoyed about it is that you don’t see a lot of films where black kids are just allowed to be weird in this way. Think Let the Right One In The Transfiguration isn’t as good, but it has a similar feel, that same atmosphere. The young boy, Milo, also has a young girl that befriends him, and he seems weird to her, but they slowly become friends. While she recognizes that something is probably a little off, they retreat into their own little fantasy world, that is really, really strange.

I probably wouldn’t show this to a young child. But when I have kids, as my child got older, I’d love to hold this film up, if they were into horror, and say, ”Look at this, this is us in the genre.” It’s also another film where — I’ve covered films that deal with racism, but another reason I put together that Letterboxd list is that I just want to see films of black people doing regular stuff, or living in weird fantasy worlds, just playing out any story where white supremacy doesn’t play a major part in their lives. This film is a good example of that. It’s not that scary, but it’s disturbing. For me, Texas Chainsaw Massacre is scary, but the Halloween films, those are disturbing. This is more along the nerve-wracking, disturbing line of films, vs. anything that’s seeking to shock you with jump scares, or and stuff like that.

I think this is why I gravitate toward real-life scenarios in horror. A young boy whose reality is blurred because he’s trying to cope with the death of a family member is something that’ll stick with me far longer than a Michael Myers or a Jason Voorhees, where it’s disturbing and scary, but it’s not real. You could actually encounter someone like Milo in The Transfiguration, who’s totally detached from reality, and is unable to tell fact from fiction, and he’s so deeply entrenched in his world as a way of overcoming his grief and any guilt he may feel.

The Transfiguration is streaming on Shudder and the library-supported Kanopy.

LBGTQ: The Wound

John Trengove’s The Wound is about a factory worker in South Africa in a relationship with another man who was a part of his tribe growing up. Obviously in certain parts of the world, LGBTQ rights aren’t respected. There’s no room for homosexuality within the community in the film. One of the things I enjoy about this one is that it’s about how we attempt to define masculinity, and how someone will go to great lengths to protect it, even if they don’t believe in the concept itself.

This couple, Xolani and Kwanda, would rid themselves of their community in a heartbeat. In the films I’ve seen that have been set in Africa, family and social structures are a very strong bond that ties people together, so it’s hard to give them up. You see them grappling with this in the film, and it’s an amazing story about someone trying so hard to fight who they really are, because they’re trying to conform and remain part of their community. They both have a lot to lose in terms of their family and their larger social structure. It’s a type of film you don’t see coming out of Africa very often, because homosexuality isn’t tolerated in many parts of Africa, so they aren’t making these films. This would make a good double feature with Rafiki, because you’d also get to see a woman’s perspective on the same issue. The films are different in terms of their overall plot, but the general concept is the same.

I’m always intrigued by films that depict same-sex relationships as authentic, and I love that this film does that. The scenes where they’re allowed to be themselves, vs. the scenes where they’re out in the open, you sense the repression, and the masks they have to place on themselves to reintegrate into the community. You see that in a lot of LGBTQ films, these dual personalities at play.

The Wound is available to rent on major digital services.

Music: What Happened, Miss Simone?

Nina Simone is one of those artists where, if you don’t know her, I suggest you get familiar. I’m sure you probably have some some artists in your life you really enjoy, and if somebody says “I’ve never heard of them,” or “I’ve never listened to them,” your jaw drops and you question their taste in the arts overall.

And this is one of those documentaries that’s pretty much it on a career. I’m fascinated by her story. Like most young black women growing up in her time, she came from pretty much nothing, and she became a superstar, a household name worldwide. Early on, she expressed a desire to be a classically trained musician. But the people interviewed in the documentary, and Nina herself, through archival footage, state that promoters and executives and teachers felt she wouldn’t be acceptable because she was a darker-skinned black woman. Because of that, she was forced to gravitate toward jazz and other popular forms of music.

That type of boxing-in of black women and black artists in general is still prevalent in the music industry. As talented as they are, there’s a reason why the Beyoncés and Rihannas of the world are more popular, and why there aren’t a lot of darker-skinned black women who have achieved that worldwide-superstar status. A lot of it has to do with the way we view beauty, which has nothing to do with talent. The two can exist without each other. Nina Simone was a beautiful woman, and she was talented. But she came up during a time where it was important to distinguish between the two, for whatever reason. And at the same time, she was able to overcome that and have a very successful career.

In this documentary, the concert footage and performances factor heavily into the film. Her performances are so passionate, it’s probably a blessing in disguise that she wasn’t confined to the classical realm. Even today, there’s passion in classical music, but you also have to be very restrained. You don’t want to lose your grip on the keys, or on your instrument. And most classical music is geared toward stuffier, buttoned-up crowds. But the music she chose let her be expressive. And when it was time for her and other artists to speak up about Jim Crow and civil rights, she was able to do so in a way she couldn’t have as a classical artist.

There’s a famous song, “Why? (The King of Love Is Dead)” that she recorded shortly after Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. She doesn’t perform it in the film, but the passion you hear in that song, you see in the documentary, and that’s something that would have been taken away from her if she went down the other path. So I’m happy she ended up in the genre she did, because she affected a lot of people’s lives, and she reached a lot more people because of it.

What’s Happened, Miss Simone? is streaming on Netflix.

Justin Lubin

Mystery: Get Out

I went pretty commercial with this one. If you haven’t seen this film at this point, you’re probably someone who chooses to ignore the realities of being black in what was originally termed “post-racial America.” Clearly we aren’t over race. It’s a film that needs to be revisited because there are people in society who consider themselves good people, but their heads are in the sand. I really enjoy the way the black protagonist, Chris, comes to the home of his white girlfriend’s family’s, and he’s accepted, but there’s something a little off. That’s the thing that stands out to me more than anything, just the discomfort.

I was at a country club this past Friday. I play golf, and friends invited me, and I was the only black person there. This happens every single time. So as Chris is in this space, Jordan Peele really captures the sense of discomfort he feels, even though he’s trying to keep it together as these insults and these passive-aggressive comments are being made. That feeling of being black in a predominantly white space sticks out for me. In this day and age, films like this one, among others, need to be continually re-examined. The film was designed, in Jordan Peele’s mind, for that post-racial society. But we’re still living in a society that’s deeply segregated, where people don’t really understand the internalized pain black people feel when they’re not made to feel welcome, when we’re in predominantly white spaces. I would hope that with the discussions being had today, surrounding the killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery, that this discomfort is part of it. It’s not your job to make me feel feel comfortable, but it’s your job to understand other people, to understand what’s taking place in these situations, in these surroundings.

I enjoyed Us, Peele’s second film. I think that it’s a film that isn’t defined by a specific moment. There are no specific references to Donald Trump, or white America. When capitalism’s ill effects rear their ugly head, this is a film that speaks to that, in the images of the doppelgängers. They amplify or exhibit the characters’ worst tendencies and attributes. It’s not as defined by race as Get Out. I think the movie should grow on people, and that it will be able to evolve with the times. I don’t think it was appreciated the way it should have been, because a lot of people were looking for Get Out Part II, and they didn’t get that, and they were confused. In Get Out, the characters are able to verbally explain what’s going on, and explain their pain, explain some of the issues of the day. Us doesn’t do that in the same way, so I think people were frustrated with it. But it’ll grow with the times. We’re going to be able to come back to it continually, and re-examine what it means as times change.

Get Out is available to rent on major digital services.

Romance: Beyond the Lights

I wanted to throw this in Drama, but someone on Letterboxd described this movie as “all rom without the com,” and it struck me how you don’t see that very often. It’s a pure romance, but it’s also about the music industry, and the way women’s bodies and appearance are exploited for our own personal gain, at the expense of their health. It’s a sincere, charming romance that really doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to the prospects of Nona Jean, played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and this gentleman Kaz, played by Nate Parker, actually being together. They’re from opposite ends of the public spectrum — she’s this pop star who’s worldly and all about presenting this sexual image to the world, and he’s very buttoned-up. He’s a cop with political aspirations, and associating himself with someone like her, even though she’s not a bad person, could wreak havoc on his political career.

There’s a depth to it that I don’t see in a lot of other romances, and I really enjoyed that. It’s also another film where race doesn’t factor heavily into the romance. It’s definitely a part of it — you can see from Kaz’s perspective that he has to be careful about the moves he makes, because he won’t be able to recover from scandal as quickly as a white cop, or a white politician, who was associated with someone who most people would deem as not an ideal partner for someone looking to go into politics. There are always people who try to blame pop culture for our society’s ills, so it seems like their relationship wouldn’t work. But he chooses love, and you can see they’re both better off for it.

Beyond the Lights is streaming on the library-supported Kanopy and Hoopla.

The cast of Attack the Block stand in front of a motor scooter

Photo: Optimum Releasing

Science Fiction: Attack the Block

I love it, I love it, I love it! I watched it before I knew who John Boyega was. The term “leading man” gets thrown around a lot, but it’s normally just assigned to white cisgender males with certain physical and emotional characteristics. But he has all those traits, and I wish more people would recognize that. I love the fact that he’s being a leading man in real life too. He steps up for his community in this film, and he stepped up for his community in London, in the Black Lives Matter protests. He’s such a smart guy. He recognized that speaking out could dramatically affect his career, and at another point in history, I think it would. I hope things are different now. I do think that speaking up and being on the right side of history is going to serve him well.

But within the film, I just enjoy how the black kids recognize that no one’s coming to save them, so they need to do it themselves. It’s a much more uplifting portrayal than a film like The Transfiguration. It’s another film I’d show to my young son or daughter to say, “Yes, there are people that look like us at all ages, in all walks of life, who can step up when their community needs it, and be heroes. That’s a truth that’s been overlooked in Hollywood circles for so long. This was an independent British feature, but the point stands that the director didn’t throw in a white savior. He said, “No, these kids are more than capable enough to fend for themselves, and stand up to this alien invasion.” So they handle it!

Attack the Block is streaming for free with ads on Fubo and Pluto TV.

Steven Soderbergh/Netflix

Sports: High Flying Bird

It would have been very easy for me to choose Hoop Dreams, or a few others, but there are so many film critics who have written about that film and the others. So I choose Steven Soderbergh’s High Flying Bird. I think in this day and age, we have a lot of athletes who are recognizing their worth, their value in a system that’s pretty much dominated by white men. The statistics boggle my mind. Like 70% of the NFL is black, 99% of the league owners are white! This is a film where an agent, Ray, played by André Holland, decides he’s not going to let the system game him and others around him anymore. Just the hint of expressing some form of ingenuity, just the thought of bringing up something that could in no way topple what’s already been built, just threaten it a bit, is enough for the forces to come together against him and others.

I love that the central theme of the film is, “Know your worth.” You see a lot of athletes, both when it comes to dollars and cents, and when it comes to areas of social justice, standing up to the system and saying, “I recognize what I’m worth, I recognize that you’re nothing without me.” There are very few sports leagues in America where you can remove all the black athletes, and the leagues can still stand on their own and be as exciting. I find the pushback exciting, but it’s a little tough for me to grapple with. We have all this power, but not the pull where it’s really needed, to make necessary changes. Colin Kaepernick gave up a lot when he chose to kneel a few years ago. Now you’ve got people in the NFL coming out and saying they were wrong on areas of racial justice, but they haven’t apologized to him. There’s no telling how much money he lost for his beliefs. If there was a way people like him could gain a little more power both in the executive suite and from an ownership perspective, then maybe we could see some of these leagues stand up and be on the right side of history early on, so the athletes who are taking a stand and making the right call aren’t as marginalized going forward.

I love the way this film looks. I know some people were disturbed by him using iPhone as the cameras in this film, but I loved it. I thought it gave the film an immediacy that was further highlighted by the Aaron Sorkin-style script. So you’ve got this camera which is right up on top of each of the characters, and then this snappy dialogue, and it all works for me. There’s so much at stake, and the filmmaking and dialogue makes it clear that time is of the essence. It paints this picture of someone who is searching for an opportunity, a leg up in a system where they should be a head honcho, but they’re relegated to the side. Ray is on top of things, he’s always thinking, even though he doesn’t own a team. It really is about reclaiming ownership of yourself, of your worth.

High Flying Bird is streaming on Netflix.

Neon

Thrillers: Luce

I love this film. It fits with Sorry to Bother You — the main character, Luce, doesn’t actually use White Voice in the film, but the story takes that idea and magnifies it. Luce is a star athlete and a star pupil, what I’d refer to as The Acceptable Negro, because he has to be on-point 24/7, lest he slip and fall, and be viewed as just as delinquent as some of the other characters in the film. His decency and upstanding-ness, if that’s a word, is contrasted with that of another character in the film. The star, Kelvin Harrison, does a great job. His teacher, Octavia Spencer’s character is very hard on him, with good reason. it’s, it demonstrates the ways in which there’s very little room for failure for black men and women in our society. I think a lot of that comes from our parents telling us, “Whatever, this white person does, this white athlete, this white student, you have to be two or three times as good, just to get your foot in the door and be noticed.” In the film, you see how that weighs on him. He’s an extremely smart kid. I love the way he recognizes his inherited privilege. He recognizes that there’s no room for failure, so he decides to test the waters of that, and he throws everybody, including his adoptive parents, played by Tim Roth and Naomi Watts, for a loop.

And it wreaks havoc on the lives of people like his teacher, who sees him as someone who’s potentially squandering opportunities. Then this model student and model son that Roth and Watts feel they have is being questioned, and they have no idea what to do with it. In my eyes, they’re the type of parents who don’t see color, even when they absolutely need to see it. It’s something that has allowed him to stand out within his community. But it can also easily destroy him, as we see with one of the other characters who’s just as promising, but has had a bit of a slip-up, and is now struggling to regain his footing in society, in this community that’s largely written him off.

Luce is streaming on Hulu.

War: General Idi Amin Dada: A Self Portrait

This is a documentary about the former dictator of Uganda, who ruled from the early to late 1970s. The director Barbet Schroeder, just made this portrait, capturing a moment in time during his dictatorship. There are just so many stark parallels between our current administration and what I see in this dictator, in this film. Donald Trump is no way as barbaric as Idi Amin, but he’s just as clueless, and his grip on power is just as fragile. There are a lot of cracks in Trump’s armor right now. In the same way, in this film, you recognize that the emperor has no clothes, and the only way he’s able to hold onto power is through through violence, through force.

Something that trips me up about this film is that there are certain points where Amin is talking to his cabinet or his troops, and he refers to himself as a revolutionary leader. He goes on and on about this, “I’m a revolutionary leader.” And I’m like, “Is someone going to tell him that a true revolutionary leader like Nelson Mandela doesn’t have to assign that tag to himself?” People typically, generally, will let you know if you’re a revolutionary leader! But then, hey, if I was part of his cabinet, I wouldn’t be the guy to speak up to Idi Amin either! So there’s this comedy there, in the way he’s ruling. But it’s tough, obviously, to step up and speak truth to power, when you know you’ll be paying for it with your life.

I believe Schroeder was severely handicapped in what he was able to show. It’s similar to if Werner Herzog went to North Korea and was able to document Kim Jong-Un. You’re only going to get what the party wants to show you. I’m sure he could have taken more creative license, but he would have done so at his own peril, even if he wasn’t a citizen of that country. There would have been repercussions. So it’s definitely not the true story of Amin, his dictatorship, and his rule over the country during that period. I believe he murdered close to half a million of his own citizens, and there’s very little about that in the film.

But there is an unnerving moment in the film where Amin is having a cabinet meeting, and he’s talking to one of his subordinates, and he doesn’t get the type of answer he wants, because of something that’s gone wrong. And then later in the film, you have the same cabinet meeting, and that member is nowhere to be found. And you know exactly what’s happened to him. Even though it’s Amin’s self-portrait, very grandstanding, probably because he said, “This is how it’s going to be,” Schroeder fit in all these moments where you’re brought back to reality, where you recognize what a brutal, inhumane person you’re dealing with.

I think Schroeder is documenting for posterity. He probably took what he could get. There were probably other news portraits, and journalists and others who created individual pieces, and then when you put those together as a whole, you can provide a more realistic portrait of what took place while he ruled the country. But it’s important to get these people on record, and hear their own words. Because as time goes on, you start to realize how ridiculous some of the things they say can sound. You can’t point it out in the moment, but you can see how detrimental his actions and policies were.

General Idi Amin Dada: A Self Portrait is streaming on Criterion Channel and the library-supported Kanopy.

Western: The Retrieval

This was probably the toughest category, because a lot of the Westerns centered around black characters aren’t very good, at least the ones I’ve seen thus far. It would have been easy to choose Blazing Saddles or Django Unchained, but everybody’s seen those who’s going to, and as a recommendation, that won’t enlighten anyone. I chose an independent film from 2013, The Retrieval, by director Chris Eska. It’s about these two black bounty hunters living in the antebellum South who travel north to retrieve runaway slaves. The film is great because it’s one of those films showcases black agency in a time where there really was none. Most films set in this period, black people are slaves. And in the film, the two bounty hunters — one’s an older man, and the other’s a young boy, Ashton Sanders, who plays Chiron in Moonlight. This was one of his first features. So it’s always cool to see actors you love at a younger stage of their career.

In the film, I love the fact that you’re able to see these black characters engage with their world directly. They’re confronting racism in many ways, because they’re freed slaves who are sent out to capture their own. And it’s such a moral dilemma, because they recognize what it’s like to want to run away, and they would have known that could result in them being recaptured, re-enslaved, or put to death. At the same time, they’re denying other people their freedom. It has such strong Western vibes — how many Westerns are about a group of men being sent out to capture someone, and going on an adventure as a part of it?

The Retrieval is streaming on Amazon Prime and the library-supported Kanopy.


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300 Essential Movies To Watch Now https://whaleeaters.org/300-essential-movies-to-watch-now/ https://whaleeaters.org/300-essential-movies-to-watch-now/#respond Sun, 03 Oct 2021 17:51:08 +0000 https://whaleeaters.org/?p=161 Welcome to our updated guide to the 300 Essential Movies To Watch Now, which features incredible must-watch movies from the 1920s to today! In our annual refresh, we’re sticking with the list’s original vision as a definitive source of movie guidance and education for all ages and stages, whether you’re a seasoned film buff or […]]]>

Welcome to our updated guide to the 300 Essential Movies To Watch Now, which features incredible must-watch movies from the 1920s to today! In our annual refresh, we’re sticking with the list’s original vision as a definitive source of movie guidance and education for all ages and stages, whether you’re a seasoned film buff or just starting out, while reflecting new trends and significant movies uncovered over the past year. We’re also just making sure we give you some really good movies to watch.

You may remember from years past that this guide was capped at 200 movies. By adding space for 100 more, we’re skipping the annual internal staff debate about what to add and what to take out while upholding the guide’s mission of a balanced, entertaining document. We’ve now expanded the silent era selections (like Pandora’s Box and Dracula), inserted plenty of sparkling Golden Age Hollywood classics (The Lady Eve, The Philadelphia Story, To Be Or Not To Be), and got in more animation (from Pinocchio to Princess Mononoke). We continued to survey the contemporary scene and their wide breadth of subjects, selecting the ones that will endure, from Portrait of a Lady on Fire and Call Me By Your Name, to Creed and The Hate U Give.

The list is sorted by alphabetically. Feel free to start tackling the list with whatever is the most interesting to you first…or just start at the top and work your way down. We think you’ll have fun either way. And best of all, every movie on the list is Certified Fresh!

Ready to take on the watching challenge? Click here and head to FandangoNOW where you can sort the list and buy or rent any of the movies! For now, enjoy this list of 300 Essential Movies to Watch Now.

#1

Adjusted Score: 108164%

Critics Consensus: Sidney Lumet’s feature debut is a superbly written, dramatically effective courtroom thriller that rightfully stands as a modern classic.

Synopsis: One (Henry Fonda) of 12 jurors holds out in the case of a boy from the slums who is accused… [More]

#2

Adjusted Score: 107652%

Critics Consensus: One of the most influential of all sci-fi films — and one of the most controversial — Stanley Kubrick’s 2001 is a delicate, poetic meditation on the ingenuity — and folly — of mankind.

Synopsis: Supercomputer HAL 9000 guides astronauts (Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester) on a trip to find the origins of humans…. [More]

#3

Adjusted Score: 105922%

Critics Consensus: A seminal French New Wave film that offers an honest, sympathetic, and wholly heartbreaking observation of adolescence without trite nostalgia.

Synopsis: Neglected by his parents (Claire Maurier, Albert Remy), Parisian schoolboy Antoine Doinel (Jean-Pierre Léaud) runs away from home and turns… [More]

#4

Adjusted Score: 98033%

Critics Consensus: While its premise is ripe for comedy — and it certainly delivers its fair share of laughs — Priscilla is also a surprisingly tender and thoughtful road movie with some outstanding performances.

Synopsis: Three drag queens (Terence Stamp, Hugo Weaving, Guy Pearce) head for a gig at a central Australia casino in a… [More]

#5

Adjusted Score: 110368%

Critics Consensus: Errol Flynn thrills as the legendary title character, and the film embodies the type of imaginative family adventure tailor-made for the silver screen.

Synopsis: The Sherwood Forest outlaw (Errol Flynn) and his men save King Richard and Maid Marian (Olivia de Havilland) from Prince… [More]

#6

Adjusted Score: 103136%

Critics Consensus: A haunting journey of natural wonder and tangible danger, Aguirre transcends epic genre trappings and becomes mythological by its own right.

Synopsis: Power-mad Aguirre (Klaus Kinski) leads an ill-fated raft party from Pizarro’s 16th-century Amazon expedition…. [More]

#7

Adjusted Score: 104878%

Critics Consensus: Though unabashedly juvenile and silly, Airplane! is nevertheless an uproarious spoof comedy full of quotable lines and slapstick gags that endure to this day.

Synopsis: A pilot (Robert Hays) afraid to fly follows his stewardess ex-girlfriend (Julie Hagerty) and must take over for the poisoned… [More]

#8

Adjusted Score: 94409%

Critics Consensus: Akira is strikingly bloody and violent, but its phenomenal animation and sheer kinetic energy helped set the standard for modern anime.

Synopsis: A Japanese teenager learns that his newfound powers of telepathy are more powerful than he suspected…. [More]

#9

Adjusted Score: 111092%

Critics Consensus: A modern classic, Alien blends science fiction, horror and bleak poetry into a seamless whole.

Synopsis: Crewmembers (Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver) aboard an interstellar freighter encounter a merciless monster that crawls around their ship’s dark corridors… [More]

#10

Adjusted Score: 105604%

Critics Consensus: While Alien was a marvel of slow-building, atmospheric tension, Aliens packs a much more visceral punch, and features a typically strong performance from Sigourney Weaver.

Synopsis: On planet LV-426, Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) and a dwindling number of Marines battle an almost-unstoppable army of monstrous predators which… [More]

#11

Adjusted Score: 116329%

Critics Consensus: Smart, sophisticated, and devastatingly funny, All About Eve is a Hollywood classic that only improves with age.

Synopsis: A Broadway star (Bette Davis) takes a young and seemingly naive aspiring actress (Anne Baxter) under her wing…. [More]

#12

Adjusted Score: 101234%

Critics Consensus: Almodovar weaves together a magnificent tapestry of femininity with an affectionate wink to classics of theater and cinema in this poignant story of love, loss and compassion.

Synopsis: New friends help a woman (Cecilia Roth) struggling to get her life in order after her son’s (Eloy Azorín) death…. [More]

#13

Adjusted Score: 101391%

Critics Consensus: A taut, solidly acted paean to the benefits of a free press and the dangers of unchecked power, made all the more effective by its origins in real-life events.

Synopsis: The Washington Post’s Bob Woodward (Robert Redford) and Carl Bernstein (Dustin Hoffman) tie the Watergate break-in to the White House…. [More]

#14

Adjusted Score: 96600%

Critics Consensus: Almost Famous, with its great ensemble performances and story, is a well-crafted, warm-hearted movie that successfully draws you into its era.

Synopsis: An aspiring teenage rock journalist gets his big break when he follows an up-and-coming band on its tour…. [More]

#15

Adjusted Score: 103125%

Critics Consensus: A lavish, entertaining, powerful film about the life and influence, both positive and negative, of one of Western culture’s great artists.

Synopsis: Antonio Salieri (F. Murray Abraham), court composer in Vienna, confesses in old age to his sins against the young genius… [More]

#16

Adjusted Score: 95366%

Critics Consensus: The feel-good Amelie is a lively, fanciful charmer, showcasing Audrey Tautou as its delightful heroine.

Synopsis: An accidental find convinces a young woman (Audrey Tautou) to try to enrich the lives of a tobacco dealer, a… [More]

#17

Adjusted Score: 102219%

Critics Consensus: With towering performances and an unflinching script from Michael Haneke, Amour represents an honest, heartwrenching depiction of deep love and responsibility.

Synopsis: A retired music teacher (Jean-Louis Trintignant) demonstrates unflagging devotion to his wife (Emmanuelle Riva), even after she has a debilitating… [More]

#18

Adjusted Score: 111847%

Critics Consensus: The plot may be problematic, but such concerns are rendered superfluous by Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron’s star power, the Gershwins’ classic songs, and Vincente Minnelli’s colorful, sympathetic direction.

Synopsis: An American soldier (Gene Kelly) stays in Paris after World War II to paint and falls in love with a… [More]

#19

Adjusted Score: 105942%

Critics Consensus: Filled with poignant performances and devastating humor, Annie Hall represents a quantum leap for Woody Allen and remains an American classic.

Synopsis: A New York comedian (Woody Allen) recalls his lost love, a kooky singer (Diane Keaton) with a style all her… [More]

#20

Adjusted Score: 102975%

Critics Consensus: Director Billy Wilder’s customary cynicism is leavened here by tender humor, romance, and genuine pathos.

Synopsis: A corporate climber (Jack Lemmon), whose boss (Fred MacMurray) and others use his apartment for hanky-panky, aids a young woman… [More]

#21

Adjusted Score: 107538%

Critics Consensus: Francis Ford Coppola’s haunting, hallucinatory Vietnam War epic is cinema at its most audacious and visionary.

Synopsis: An Army agent (Martin Sheen) goes upriver into the heart of Cambodia to kill a renegade colonel called Kurtz (Marlon… [More]

#22

Adjusted Score: 123366%

Critics Consensus: Exciting, entertaining, and emotionally impactful, Avengers: Endgame does whatever it takes to deliver a satisfying finale to Marvel’s epic Infinity Saga.

Synopsis: The remaining Avengers — Thor, Black Widow, Captain America and Bruce Banner — must figure out a way to bring… [More]

#23

Adjusted Score: 104149%

Critics Consensus: Inventive, funny, and breathlessly constructed, Back to the Future is a rousing time-travel adventure with an unforgettable spirit.

Synopsis: A teen (Michael J. Fox) takes a crackpot’s (Christopher Lloyd) DeLorean time machine to 1955 and sees his parents in… [More]

#24

Adjusted Score: 103350%

Critics Consensus: Terrence Malick’s debut is a masterful slice of American cinema, rife with the visual poetry and measured performances that would characterize his work.

Synopsis: A thrill-seeking teenage girl (Sissy Spacek) joins a garbageman (Martin Sheen) on a South Dakota killing spree…. [More]

#25

Adjusted Score: 105021%

Critics Consensus: Enchanting, sweepingly romantic, and featuring plenty of wonderful musical numbers, Beauty and the Beast is one of Disney’s most elegant animated offerings.

Synopsis: A French maiden takes the place of her captured father in the enchanted castle of an accursed prince, and her… [More]

#26

Adjusted Score: 100764%

Critics Consensus: Smart, funny, and highly original, Being John Malkovich supports its wild premise with skillful direction and a stellar ensemble cast.

Synopsis: A puppeteer (John Cusack) and his co-worker (Catherine Keener) discover a tunnel that allows others to enter the actor’s mind… [More]

#27

Adjusted Score: 99827%

Critics Consensus: Smart, sophisticated, and refreshingly subtle, Being There soars behind sensitive direction from Hal Ashby and a stellar Peter Sellers performance.

Synopsis: The president (Jack Warden) and a power broker heed the utterings of a simple gardener (Peter Sellers) who likes to… [More]

#28

Adjusted Score: 109786%

Critics Consensus: An engrossing look at the triumphs and travails of war veterans, The Best Years of Our Lives is concerned specifically with the aftermath of World War II, but its messages speak to the overall American experience.

Synopsis: A disabled serviceman and two other veterans (Fredric March, Dana Andrews) have difficulty adjusting to civilian life after World War… [More]

#29

Adjusted Score: 84237%

Critics Consensus: A promising work by Lin, the energetic Better Luck Tomorrow is disturbing and thought-provoking.

Synopsis: A 16-year-old Asian student (Parry Shen) commits crimes with his goofy friend (Jason Tobin) and a gang in Southern California…. [More]

#30

Adjusted Score: 108956%

Critics Consensus: An Italian neorealism exemplar, Bicycle Thieves thrives on its non-flashy performances and searing emotion.

Synopsis: A poor man (Lamberto Maggiorani) and his son (Enzo Staiola) search postwar Rome for the stolen bicycle he needs to… [More]

#31

Adjusted Score: 90125%

Critics Consensus: Typically stunning visuals and sharp dialogue from the Coen Brothers, brought to life with strong performances from Goodman and Bridges.

Synopsis: Bowling buddies (Jeff Bridges, John Goodman) become involved with a multimillionaire and his family wanted by mobsters in 1990s Los… [More]

#32

Adjusted Score: 112932%

Critics Consensus: Funny, heartfelt, and intelligent, The Big Sick uses its appealing leads and cross-cultural themes to prove the standard romcom formula still has some fresh angles left to explore.

Synopsis: Pakistani comic Kumail becomes worried about what his traditional Muslim parents will think of his American girlfriend Emily. When Emily… [More]

#33

Adjusted Score: 108868%

Critics Consensus: A thrilling leap forward for director Alejandro González Iñárritu, Birdman is an ambitious technical showcase powered by a layered story and outstanding performances from Michael Keaton and Edward Norton.

Synopsis: A washed-up actor (Michael Keaton), whose previous claim to fame was his portrayal of a popular superhero, attempts to recapture… [More]

#34

Adjusted Score: 82816%

Critics Consensus: Though it’s light on character development and cultural empathy, Black Hawk Down is a visceral, pulse-pounding portrait of war, elevated by Ridley Scott’s superb technical skill.

Synopsis: U.S. soldiers (Josh Hartnett, Ewan McGregor, Tom Sizemore) take heavy fire while trying to capture a warlord’s associates in Mogadishu,… [More]

#35

Adjusted Score: 95662%

Critics Consensus: Colorful, atmospheric, and infections, Black Orpheus takes an ancient tale and makes it fresh anew, thanks in part to its bewitching bossa nova soundtrack.

Synopsis: Death follows a streetcar conductor (Breno Mello) and country girl (Marpessa Dawn) during carnival in Rio de Janeiro…. [More]

#36

Adjusted Score: 124600%

Critics Consensus: Black Panther elevates superhero cinema to thrilling new heights while telling one of the MCU’s most absorbing stories — and introducing some of its most fully realized characters.

Synopsis: Black Panther’s mettle as king gets tested when an old enemy draws him into a conflict that puts his nation… [More]

#37

Adjusted Score: 104060%

Critics Consensus: Misunderstood when it first hit theaters, the influence of Ridley Scott’s mysterious, neo-noir Blade Runner has deepened with time. A visually remarkable, achingly human sci-fi masterpiece.

Synopsis: A specialized detective (Harrison Ford) in 2019 Los Angeles receives an order to terminate obsolete android slaves (Rutger Hauer, Sean… [More]

#38

Adjusted Score: 95047%

Critics Consensus: Daring, provocative, and laugh-out-loud funny, Blazing Saddles is a gleefully vulgar spoof of Westerns that marks a high point in Mel Brooks’ storied career.

Synopsis: A black railroad worker is appointed sheriff of a town marked for destruction by a scheming politician…. [More]

#39

Adjusted Score: 97982%

Critics Consensus: Grounded in strong characters, bold themes, and subtle storytelling, Boogie Nights is a groundbreaking film both for director P.T. Anderson and star Mark Wahlberg.

Synopsis: A producer (Burt Reynolds) guides a young man (Mark Wahlberg) to success in the 1970s porn industry, but greed and… [More]

#40

Adjusted Score: 91548%

Critics Consensus: Harrowing yet stirring, Boys Don’t Cry powerfully commemorates the life — and brutally unjust death — of transgender teen Brandon Teena.

Synopsis: A young transgender man explores his gender identity and searches for love in rural Nebraska, before falling victim to a… [More]

#41

Adjusted Score: 100992%

Critics Consensus: Well-acted and thematically rich, Boyz N the Hood observes Black America with far more depth and compassion than many of the like-minded films its success inspired.

Synopsis: Three boys become men, one (Cuba Gooding Jr.) guided by his father (Larry Fishburne), in their racially divided Los Angeles… [More]

#42

Adjusted Score: 95172%

Critics Consensus: The Breakfast Club is a warm, insightful, and very funny look into the inner lives of teenagers.

Synopsis: A wrestler (Emilio Estevez), a rebel (Judd Nelson), a brain, a beauty (Molly Ringwald) and a shy girl share Saturday… [More]

#43

Adjusted Score: 105205%

Critics Consensus: Breathless rewrote the rules of cinema — and more than 50 years after its arrival, Jean-Luc Godard’s paradigm-shifting classic remains every bit as vital.

Synopsis: A French hood (Jean-Paul Belmondo) kills a policeman and heads for Italy with his American girlfriend (Jean Seberg)…. [More]

#44

Adjusted Score: 100502%

Critics Consensus: A marriage of genuine characters, gross out gags, and pathos, Bridesmaids is a female-driven comedy that refuses to be boxed in as Kristen Wiig emerges as a real star.

Synopsis: Though broke and lovelorn, a woman (Kristen Wiig) takes on the strange and expensive rituals associated with being her best… [More]

#45

Adjusted Score: 104050%

Critics Consensus: This complex war epic asks hard questions, resists easy answers, and boasts career-defining work from star Alec Guinness and director David Lean.

Synopsis: A British POW colonel (Alec Guinness) orders his men to build their Japanese captor (Sessue Hayakawa) a railway bridge in… [More]

#46

Adjusted Score: 85275%

Critics Consensus: Though there was controversy over the choice of casting, Zellweger’s Bridget Jones is a sympathetic, likable, funny character, giving this romantic comedy a lot of charm.

Synopsis: An outrageous British woman (Renée Zellweger) decides to take control of her life, but instead falls for two very different… [More]

#47

Adjusted Score: 102718%

Critics Consensus: Blockbuster dramatist James L. Brooks delivers with Broadcast News, fully entertaining with deft, deep characterization.

Synopsis: A reporter (Albert Brooks), a producer (Holly Hunter) and an anchorman (William Hurt) form a triangle in a TV-network news… [More]

#48

Adjusted Score: 96412%

Critics Consensus: A beautiful, epic Western, Brokeback Mountain’s love story is imbued with heartbreaking universality thanks to moving performances by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal.

Synopsis: In 1960s Wyoming two cowboys (Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal) begin a secret romance that endures through many years and each… [More]

#49

Adjusted Score: 95551%

Critics Consensus: With its iconic pairing of Paul Newman and Robert Redford, jaunty screenplay and Burt Bacharach score, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid has gone down as among the defining moments in late-’60s American cinema.

Synopsis: When a persistent posse threatens two outlaws’ (Paul Newman, Robert Redford) romp through Wyoming, they decide to take their act… [More]

#50

Adjusted Score: 99245%

Critics Consensus: Great performances and evocative musical numbers help Cabaret secure its status as a stylish, socially conscious classic.

Synopsis: Multiple Oscars went to this tale about an American chanteuse in Berlin caught in the rising tide of Nazism…. [More]

#51

Adjusted Score: 114273%

Critics Consensus: Arguably the first true horror film, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari set a brilliantly high bar for the genre — and remains terrifying nearly a century after it first stalked the screen.

Synopsis: A hypnotist (Werner Krauss) in black exhibits a cabinet, which contains a pale man (Conrad Veidt) in black in a… [More]

#52

Adjusted Score: 112086%

Critics Consensus: Call Me by Your Name offers a melancholy, powerfully affecting portrait of first love, empathetically acted by Timothée Chalamet and Armie Hammer.

Synopsis: In 1983 Italy, a precocious 17-year-old and a young doctoral student discover the heady beauty of awakening desire over the… [More]

#53

Adjusted Score: 107916%

Critics Consensus: Shaped by Todd Haynes’ deft direction and powered by a strong cast led by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, Carol lives up to its groundbreaking source material.

Synopsis: Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara) spots the beautiful, elegant Carol (Cate Blanchett) perusing the doll displays in a 1950s Manhattan department… [More]

#54

Adjusted Score: 119623%

Critics Consensus: An undisputed masterpiece and perhaps Hollywood’s quintessential statement on love and romance, Casablanca has only improved with age, boasting career-defining performances from Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman.

Synopsis: A cynical nightclub owner (Humphrey Bogart) protects an old flame (Ingrid Bergman) and her husband (Paul Henreid) from Nazis in… [More]

#55

Adjusted Score: 104539%

Critics Consensus: Casino Royale disposes of the silliness and gadgetry that plagued recent James Bond outings, and Daniel Craig delivers what fans and critics have been waiting for: a caustic, haunted, intense reinvention of 007.

Synopsis: After receiving a license to kill, British agent James Bond (Daniel Craig) enters a high-stakes poker game with Le Chiffre… [More]

#56

Adjusted Score: 101203%

Critics Consensus: Children of Men works on every level: as a violent chase thriller, a fantastical cautionary tale, and a sophisticated human drama about societies struggling to live.

Synopsis: When infertility threatens mankind with extinction, a disillusioned bureaucrat (Clive Owen) becomes the unlikely champion in the fight for the… [More]

#57

Adjusted Score: 107776%

Critics Consensus: As bruised and cynical as the decade that produced it, this noir classic benefits from Robert Towne’s brilliant screenplay, director Roman Polanski’s steady hand, and wonderful performances from Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway.

Synopsis: A 1930s gumshoe named Jake (Jack Nicholson) sticks his nose into a sordid mess over Los Angeles land and water…. [More]

#58

Adjusted Score: 95275%

Critics Consensus: City of God offers a shocking and disturbing — but always compelling — look at life in the slums of Rio de Janiero.

Synopsis: After forming a gang in Rio de Janeiro, a young man and his best friend descend from robbery to drug… [More]

#59

Adjusted Score: 97407%

Critics Consensus: Cinema Paradiso is a life-affirming ode to the power of youth, nostalgia, and the the movies themselves.

Synopsis: A Sicilian boy (Salvatore Cascio) discovers the movies with his local theater’s projectionist (Philippe Noiret)…. [More]

#60

Adjusted Score: 119231%

Critics Consensus: Orson Welles’s epic tale of a publishing tycoon’s rise and fall is entertaining, poignant, and inventive in its storytelling, earning its reputation as a landmark achievement in film.

Synopsis: Enigmatic newspaper magnate Charles Foster Kane (Orson Welles) rises, falls and leaves behind a riddle with his dying breath…. [More]

#61

Adjusted Score: 105627%

Critics Consensus: One of the best underdog romance movies ever, with an ending that will light up any heart.

Synopsis: A little tramp (Charlie Chaplin) gets money from a drunken millionaire (Harry Myers) for an operation to restore a flower… [More]

#62

Adjusted Score: 93109%

Critics Consensus: With its quirky characters and clever, quotable dialogue, Clerks is the ultimate clarion call for slackers everywhere to unite and, uh, do something we guess?

Synopsis: A 22-year-old clerk (Brian O’Halloran) takes in a day’s worth of customers at a convenience store in New Jersey…. [More]

#63

Adjusted Score: 97042%

Critics Consensus: Disturbing and thought-provoking, A Clockwork Orange is a cold, dystopian nightmare with a very dark sense of humor.

Synopsis: Young Alex (Malcolm McDowell) and his droogs commit barbaric acts in a near-future, dehumanizing society…. [More]

#64

Adjusted Score: 90108%

Critics Consensus: A funny and clever reshaping of Emma, Clueless offers a soft satire that pokes as much fun at teen films as it does at the Beverly Hills glitterati.

Synopsis: A Beverly Hills teen (Alicia Silverstone) plays matchmaker for teachers, transforms a bad dresser (Brittany Murphy) and examines her own… [More]

#65

Adjusted Score: 114518%

Critics Consensus: Coco‘s rich visual pleasures are matched by a thoughtful narrative that takes a family-friendly — and deeply affecting — approach to questions of culture, family, life, and death.

Synopsis: Accompanied by a charming trickster, a young musician embarks on an extraordinary journey through the colorful Land of the Dead… [More]

#66

Adjusted Score: 109750%

Critics Consensus: With a terrific cast and a surfeit of visual razzle dazzle, Crazy Rich Asians takes a satisfying step forward for screen representation while deftly drawing inspiration from the classic — and still effective — rom-com formula.

Synopsis: Rachel Chu is happy to accompany her longtime boyfriend, Nick, to his best friend’s wedding in Singapore. She’s also surprised… [More]

#67

Adjusted Score: 108764%

Critics Consensus: Creed brings the Rocky franchise off the mat for a surprisingly effective seventh round that extends the boxer’s saga in interesting new directions while staying true to its classic predecessors’ roots.

Synopsis: Long-retired boxer Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) agrees to train Apollo Creed’s son (Michael B. Jordan) to become a fighter, even… [More]

#68

Adjusted Score: 103107%

Critics Consensus: The movie that catapulted Ang Lee into the ranks of upper echelon Hollywood filmmakers, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon features a deft mix of amazing martial arts battles, beautiful scenery, and tasteful drama.

Synopsis: A 19th-century martial arts master (Chow Yun-Fat) gives a sword called Green Destiny to his beloved (Michelle Yeoh), then the… [More]

#69

Adjusted Score: 108485%

Critics Consensus: Dark, complex, and unforgettable, The Dark Knight succeeds not just as an entertaining comic book film, but as a richly thrilling crime saga.

Synopsis: Batman (Christian Bale) has to keep a balance between heroism and vigilantism to fight a vile criminal known as the… [More]

#70

Adjusted Score: 97630%

Critics Consensus: One of the most compelling and entertaining zombie films ever, Dawn of the Dead perfectly blends pure horror and gore with social commentary on material society.

Synopsis: Cannibal zombies pursue a couple (David Emge, Gaylen Ross) and two former National Guardsmen in Philadelphia…. [More]

#71

Adjusted Score: 104633%

Critics Consensus: Socially minded yet entertaining, The Day the Earth Stood Still imparts its moral of peace and understanding without didacticism.

Synopsis: Klaatu (Michael Rennie) and his guardian robot, Gort, come from afar to warn Earth about nuclear war…. [More]

#72

Adjusted Score: 96911%

Critics Consensus: Featuring an excellent ensemble cast, a precise feel for the 1970s, and a killer soundtrack, Dazed and Confused is a funny, affectionate, and clear-eyed look at high school life.

Synopsis: Assorted teens waste another day of school before getting down to wasting summer in 1976 Austin, Texas…. [More]

#73

Adjusted Score: 89340%

Critics Consensus: Affecting performances from the young cast and a genuinely inspirational turn from Robin Williams grant Peter Weir’s prep school drama top honors.

Synopsis: A teacher at a New England prep school uses unconventional methods to instill spirit into the lives of his students…. [More]

#74

Adjusted Score: 100303%

Critics Consensus: Its many imitators (and sequels) have never come close to matching the taut thrills of the definitive holiday action classic.

Synopsis: A New York policeman (Bruce Willis) outwits foreign thugs holding his wife (Bonnie Bedelia) and others in a Los Angeles… [More]

#75

Adjusted Score: 101566%

Critics Consensus: Smart, vibrant, and urgent without being didactic, Do the Right Thing is one of Spike Lee’s most fully realized efforts — and one of the most important films of the 1980s.

Synopsis: Spike Lee’s account of erupting racial tensions on a summer afternoon in a predominantly black Brooklyn neighborhood…. [More]

#76

Adjusted Score: 90912%

Critics Consensus: It may not be the best of David Lean’s epics, but Dr. Zhivago is still brilliantly photographed and sweepingly romantic.

Synopsis: The Russian Revolution forms the backdrop for this tale of a sensitive Russian physician (Omar Sharif) who is torn between… [More]

#77

Adjusted Score: 100784%

Critics Consensus: Framed by great work from director Sidney Lumet and fueled by a gripping performance from Al Pacino, Dog Day Afternoon offers a finely detailed snapshot of people in crisis with tension-soaked drama shaded in black humor.

Synopsis: A loser (Al Pacino) robs a Brooklyn bank with his stupid buddy (John Cazale) to pay for his lover’s sex… [More]

#78

Adjusted Score: 102954%

Critics Consensus: Don’t Look Now patiently builds suspense with haunting imagery and a chilling score — causing viewers to feel Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie’s grief deep within.

Synopsis: British parents (Julie Christie, Donald Sutherland) of a drowned child go to Venice and meet a blind psychic and her… [More]

#79

Adjusted Score: 111026%

Critics Consensus: A dark, tautly constructed adaptation of James M. Cain’s novel — penned by Billy Wilder and Raymond Chandler — Double Indemnity continues to set the standard for the best in Hollywood film noir.

Synopsis: An insurance man (Fred MacMurray) helps a platinum blonde (Barbara Stanwyck) kill her husband, but all does not go as… [More]

#80

Adjusted Score: 106864%

Critics Consensus: Stanley Kubrick’s brilliant Cold War satire remains as funny and razor-sharp today as it was in 1964.

Synopsis: President Muffley (Peter Sellers) and his advisers (George C. Scott, Keenan Wynn) man the Pentagon war room, as planes with… [More]

#81

Adjusted Score: 99508%

Critics Consensus: Bela Lugosi’s timeless portrayal of Dracula in this creepy and atmospheric 1931 film has set the standard for major vampiric roles since.

Synopsis: A real-estate man (Dwight Frye) visits the Transylvania castle of a 500-year-old vampire (Bela Lugosi)…. [More]

#82

Adjusted Score: 102478%

Critics Consensus: With its hyper-stylized blend of violence, music, and striking imagery, Drive represents a fully realized vision of arthouse action.

Synopsis: A Hollywood stuntman who moonlights as a getaway driver for thieves finds that a price has been put on his… [More]

#83

Adjusted Score: 89159%

Critics Consensus: Jackie Chan sends up some amazing and entertaining fight sequences in The Legend of Drunken Master.

Synopsis: Wong Fei-Hong must use his unique kung fu fighting technique to battle vicious smugglers bent on stealing ancient Chinese artifacts…. [More]

#84

Adjusted Score: 99659%

Critics Consensus: Fueled by inspired silliness and blessed with some of the Marx brothers’ most brilliant work, Duck Soup is one of its — or any — era’s finest comedies.

Synopsis: Spies (Harpo Marx, Chico Marx) intervene when Freedonia’s prime minister (Groucho Marx) declares war on nearby Sylvania…. [More]

#85

Adjusted Score: 113972%

Critics Consensus: Playing as both an exciting sci-fi adventure and a remarkable portrait of childhood, Steven Spielberg’s touching tale of a homesick alien remains a piece of movie magic for young and old.

Synopsis: A boy’s close encounter with an alien stranded on Earth leads to a unique friendship in Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-winning film…. [More]

#86

Adjusted Score: 90682%

Critics Consensus: Edgy and seminal, Easy Rider encapsulates the dreams, hopes, and hopelessness of 1960s counterculture.

Synopsis: Two free spirits (Peter Fonda, Dennis Hopper) on chopped motorcycles clash with the Establishment and meet a boozy lawyer (Jack… [More]

#87

Adjusted Score: 94887%

Critics Consensus: The first collaboration between Johnny Depp and Tim Burton, Edward Scissorhands is a magical modern fairy tale with gothic overtones and a sweet center.

Synopsis: A deceased inventor’s unfinished creation (Johnny Depp) becomes an instant celebrity when a cheery suburbanite (Dianne Wiest) brings him home…. [More]

#88

Adjusted Score: 97655%

Critics Consensus: Election successfully combines dark humor and intelligent writing in this very witty and enjoyable film.

Synopsis: When a school’s goody-two-shoes (Reese Witherspoon) runs for class president, a teacher/adviser (Matthew Broderick) schemes to keep her from winning…. [More]

#89

Adjusted Score: 97846%

Critics Consensus: David Lynch’s relatively straight second feature finds an admirable synthesis of compassion and restraint in treating its subject, and features outstanding performances by John Hurt and Anthony Hopkins.

Synopsis: Victorian Dr. Treves (Anthony Hopkins) rescues deformed Joseph (John) Merrick (John Hurt) from a London sideshow and shows him humanity…. [More]

#90

Adjusted Score: 100354%

Critics Consensus: Badass to the max, Enter the Dragon is the ultimate kung-fu movie and fitting (if untimely) Bruce Lee swan song.

Synopsis: A secret agent (Bruce Lee) comes to an opium lord’s island fortress with other fighters for a martial-arts tournament…. [More]

#91

Adjusted Score: 100181%

Critics Consensus: Propelled by Charlie Kaufman’s smart, imaginative script and Michel Gondry’s equally daring directorial touch, Eternal Sunshine is a twisty yet heartfelt look at relationships and heartache.

Synopsis: A doctor’s invention allows a couple (Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet) to erase the memories of their tumultuous relationship…. [More]

#92

Adjusted Score: 100734%

Critics Consensus: Evil Dead 2‘s increased special effects and slapstick-gore makes it as good — if not better — than the original.

Synopsis: Cabin visitors (Bruce Campbell, Sarah Berry) fight protean spirits of the dead with a chainsaw, a shotgun and Egyptian incantations…. [More]

#93

Adjusted Score: 92822%

Critics Consensus: The Exorcist rides its supernatural theme to magical effect, with remarkable special effects and an eerie atmosphere, resulting in one of the scariest films of all time.

Synopsis: An actress (Ellen Burstyn) calls upon Jesuit priests to try to end the demonic possession of her 12-year-old daughter (Linda… [More]

#94

Adjusted Score: 115513%

Critics Consensus: The Farewell deftly captures complicated family dynamics with a poignant, well-acted drama that marries cultural specificity with universally relatable themes.

Synopsis: Billi’s family returns to China under the guise of a fake wedding to stealthily say goodbye to their beloved matriarch… [More]

#95

Adjusted Score: 101176%

Critics Consensus: Violent, quirky, and darkly funny, Fargo delivers an original crime story and a wonderful performance by McDormand.

Synopsis: A pregnant police chief (Frances McDormand) probes the murderous events that evolved from a desperate car salesman’s (William H. Macy)… [More]

#96

Adjusted Score: 84707%

Critics Consensus: Sleek, loud, and over the top, Fast Five proudly embraces its brainless action thrills and injects new life into the franchise.

Synopsis: In Rio de Janeiro, ex-con Dom Torretto (Vin Diesel) and ex-cop Brian O’Conner (Paul Walker) join forces against a corrupt… [More]

#97

Adjusted Score: 82578%

Critics Consensus: While Fast Times at Ridgemont High features Sean Penn’s legendary performance, the film endures because it accurately captured the small details of school, work, and teenage life.

Synopsis: The teen scene includes a party-animal surfer (Sean Penn), a pregnant girl (Jennifer Jason Leigh) and a fast-food worker (Judge… [More]

#98

Adjusted Score: 87295%

Critics Consensus: Solid acting, amazing direction, and elaborate production design make Fight Club a wild ride.

Synopsis: Two young professionals (Brad Pitt, Edward Norton) create an underground club where men can compete in hand-to-hand combat…. [More]

#99

Adjusted Score: 94994%

Critics Consensus: Cannes Jury Prize-winner Fish Tank is gritty British realism at its very best, with flawless performances from newcomer Kate Jarvis, and Michael Fassbender.

Synopsis: When sparks fly between Mia and Connor, her mother’s new boyfriend, the boundaries of their relationship become blurred as mother… [More]

#100

Adjusted Score: 100578%

Critics Consensus: Shakespeare gets the deluxe space treatment in Forbidden Planet, an adaptation of The Tempest with impressive sets and seamless special effects.

Synopsis: An astronaut (Leslie Nielsen) and crew land on Altair-4 in 2200 and find a mad doctor (Walter Pidgeon), his daughter… [More]

#101

Adjusted Score: 100175%

Critics Consensus: While frothy to a fault, Four Weddings and a Funeral features irresistibly breezy humor, and winsome performances from Hugh Grant and Andie MacDowell.

Synopsis: An English charmer (Hugh Grant) and a lusty American (Andie MacDowell) make love over a course of surprising events…. [More]

#102

Adjusted Score: 106828%

Critics Consensus: Still unnerving to this day, Frankenstein adroitly explores the fine line between genius and madness, and features Boris Karloff’s legendary, frightening performance as the monster.

Synopsis: Baron Frankenstein (Colin Clive) creates a monster (Boris Karloff) from cadavers and a killer’s brain…. [More]

#103

Adjusted Score: 108103%

Critics Consensus: Realistic, fast-paced and uncommonly smart, The French Connection is bolstered by stellar performances by Gene Hackman and Roy Scheider, not to mention William Friedkin’s thrilling production.

Synopsis: New York Detective “Popeye” Doyle (Gene Hackman) and his partner (Roy Scheider) chase a French heroin smuggler…. [More]

#104

Adjusted Score: 80256%

Critics Consensus: Frida is a passionate, visually striking biopic about the larger-than-life artist.

Synopsis: Mexican painter Frida Kahlo (Salma Hayek) marries fellow artist Diego Rivera who shares her radical political views…. [More]

#105

Adjusted Score: 95213%

Critics Consensus: Peter Weir’s devastating anti-war film features a low-key but emotionally wrenching performance from Mel Gibson as a young soldier fighting in one of World War I’s most deadly and horrifying battles.

Synopsis: Two Outback runners (Mark Lee, Mel Gibson) join Australian and New Zealand troops fighting in World War I…. [More]

#106

Adjusted Score: 91912%

Critics Consensus: Director Richard Attenborough is typically sympathetic and sure-handed, but it’s Ben Kingsley’s magnetic performance that acts as the linchpin for this sprawling, lengthy biopic.

Synopsis: Richard Attenborough’s Oscar-winning portrait of the man whose policy of nonviolence won India’s independence…. [More]

#107

Adjusted Score: 86244%

Critics Consensus: Intelligent and scientifically provocative, Gattaca is an absorbing sci fi drama that poses important interesting ethical questions about the nature of science.

Synopsis: An outcast (Ethan Hawke) takes part in a complicated and perilous scheme to assume the identity of a genetically engineered… [More]

#108

Adjusted Score: 98418%

Critics Consensus: Brilliantly filmed and fueled with classic physical comedy, The General captures Buster Keaton at his timeless best.

Synopsis: Union spies pursue an engineer (Buster Keaton) who chased them to recover his stolen train…. [More]

#109

Adjusted Score: 117874%

Critics Consensus: Funny, scary, and thought-provoking, Get Out seamlessly weaves its trenchant social critiques into a brilliantly effective and entertaining horror/comedy thrill ride.

Synopsis: A young photographer uncovers a dark secret when he meets his girlfriend’s seemingly friendly parents for the first time at… [More]

#110

Adjusted Score: 99517%

Critics Consensus: A stunning feat of modern animation, Ghost in the Shell offers a thoughtful, complex treat for anime fans, as well as a perfect introduction for viewers new to the medium.

Synopsis: A cybernetic agent must stop a potent form of artificial intelligence before it can attain human form…. [More]

#111

Adjusted Score: 104121%

Critics Consensus: An infectiously fun blend of special effects and comedy, with Bill Murray’s hilarious deadpan performance leading a cast of great comic turns.

Synopsis: Armed with proton packs, four paranormal investigators (Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis) battle mischievous ghouls in New York…. [More]

#112

Adjusted Score: 99312%

Critics Consensus: Girls Trip is the rare R-rated comedy that pushes boundaries to truly comedic effect — and anchors its laughs in compelling characters brought to life by a brilliantly assembled cast.

Synopsis: Four best friends travel to New Orleans for the annual Essence Festival. Along the way, they rekindle their sisterhood and… [More]

#113

Adjusted Score: 116620%

Critics Consensus: One of Hollywood’s greatest critical and commercial successes, The Godfather gets everything right; not only did the movie transcend expectations, it established new benchmarks for American cinema.

Synopsis: Crime boss Vito Corleone (Marlon Brando) and his sons (Al Pacino, James Caan) rule their New York empire with Mafia… [More]

#114

Adjusted Score: 109730%

Critics Consensus: Drawing on strong performances by Al Pacino and Robert De Niro, Francis Ford Coppola’s continuation of Mario Puzo’s Mafia saga set new standards for sequels that have yet to be matched or broken.

Synopsis: Michael Corleone (Al Pacino) rules his father’s criminal empire, while flashbacks recall young Vito’s (Robert De Niro) climb to power…. [More]

#115

Adjusted Score: 102817%

Critics Consensus: More than straight monster-movie fare, Gojira offers potent, sobering postwar commentary.

Synopsis: A fire-breathing behemoth terrorizes Japan after an atomic bomb awakens it from its centuries-old sleep…. [More]

#116

Adjusted Score: 105055%

Critics Consensus: Goldfinger is where James Bond as we know him comes into focus – it features one of 007’s most famous lines (“A martini. Shaken, not stirred.”) and a wide range of gadgets that would become the series’ trademark.

Synopsis: Agent 007 (Sean Connery) drives an Aston Martin, runs into Oddjob and fights Goldfinger’s (Gert Frobe) scheme to rob Fort… [More]

#117

Adjusted Score: 107955%

Critics Consensus: Arguably the greatest of the spaghetti westerns, this epic features a compelling story, memorable performances, breathtaking landscapes, and a haunting score.

Synopsis: A drifter (Clint Eastwood), a bandit (Eli Wallach) and a bounty hunter (Lee Van Cleef) reach a standoff over buried… [More]

#118

Adjusted Score: 105107%

Critics Consensus: Hard-hitting and stylish, GoodFellas is a gangster classic — and arguably the high point of Martin Scorsese’s career.

Synopsis: In the 1950s an Irish-Italian hoodlum (Ray Liotta) joins the New York Mafia, but his mob career is not what… [More]

#119

Adjusted Score: 106430%

Critics Consensus: Typically stylish but deceptively thoughtful, The Grand Budapest Hotel finds Wes Anderson once again using ornate visual environments to explore deeply emotional ideas.

Synopsis: A concierge (Ralph Fiennes) at a posh European hotel is framed for murdering an elderly dowager with whom he had… [More]

#120

Adjusted Score: 111897%

Critics Consensus: Jean Renoir’s Grand Illusion is a masterful anti-war statement, bringing humane insight and an undercurrent of ironic humor to an unusual relationship between captor and captive.

Synopsis: World War I French fliers (Pierre Fresnay, Jean Gabin) become captives of a German aristocrat (Erich von Stroheim) who considers… [More]

#121

Adjusted Score: 106387%

Critics Consensus: A potent drama that is as socially important today as when it was made, The Grapes of Wrath is affecting, moving, and deservedly considered an American classic.

Synopsis: Poor sharecroppers the Joads (Henry Fonda, Jane Darwell) leave dust bowl Oklahoma in hope of better luck in California…. [More]

#122

Adjusted Score: 84029%

Critics Consensus: Grease is a pleasing, energetic musical with infectiously catchy songs and an ode to young love that never gets old.

Synopsis: Nice Sandy (Olivia Newton-John) and greaser Danny (John Travolta) try to be like each other in their 1950s high school…. [More]

#123

Adjusted Score: 99297%

Critics Consensus: With its impeccably slow-building story and a cast for the ages, The Great Escape is an all-time action classic.

Synopsis: Allied soldiers (Steve McQueen, James Garner, Richard Attenborough) dig a tunnel out of a Nazi prison camp, pocketfuls of dirt… [More]

#124

Adjusted Score: 104477%

Critics Consensus: Smart, sweet, and inventive, Groundhog Day highlights Murray’s dramatic gifts while still leaving plenty of room for laughs.

Synopsis: February 2nd keeps repeating for a cynical TV weatherman (Bill Murray) sent to watch the groundhog in Punxsutawney, Pa…. [More]

#125

Adjusted Score: 107649%

Critics Consensus: Guardians of the Galaxy is just as irreverent as fans of the frequently zany Marvel comic would expect — as well as funny, thrilling, full of heart, and packed with visual splendor.

Synopsis: A space adventurer (Chris Pratt) becomes the quarry of bounty hunters after he steals an orb coveted by a treacherous… [More]

#126

Adjusted Score: 100393%

Critics Consensus: Hairspray is perhaps John Waters’ most accessible film, and as such, it’s a gently subversive slice of retro hilarity.

Synopsis: The Turnblads’ (Divine, Jerry Stiller) plus-size daughter (Ricki Lake) rocks a segregated TV dance show in 1960s Baltimore…. [More]

#127

Adjusted Score: 103880%

Critics Consensus: Scary, suspenseful, and viscerally thrilling, Halloween set the standard for modern horror films.

Synopsis: John Carpenter’s chiller about an escaped maniac who returns to his Illinois hometown to continue his bloody rampage…. [More]

#128

Adjusted Score: 110066%

Critics Consensus: A Hard Day’s Night, despite its age, is still a delight to watch and has proven itself to be a rock-and-roll movie classic.

Synopsis: John, Paul, George and Ringo (The Beatles) spend 36 wild hours in London, besieged by exuberant fans…. [More]

#129

Adjusted Score: 89682%

Critics Consensus: Hal Ashby’s comedy is too dark and twisted for some, and occasionally oversteps its bounds, but there’s no denying the film’s warm humor and big heart.

Synopsis: A 20-year-old heir (Bud Cort) with a death wish meets a 79-year-old free spirit (Ruth Gordon) who knows how to… [More]

#130

Adjusted Score: 98496%

Critics Consensus: Under the assured direction of Alfonso Cuaron, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban triumphantly strikes a delicate balance between technical wizardry and complex storytelling.

Synopsis: The young wizard (Daniel Radcliffe) and his friends (Rupert Grint, Emma Watson) confront Sirius Black, a fugitive with ties to… [More]

#131

Adjusted Score: 107712%

Critics Consensus: Led by a breakout turn from Amandla Stenberg, the hard-hitting The Hate U Give emphatically proves the YA genre has room for much more than magic and romance.

Synopsis: Starr Carter is a prep school student who witnesses the fatal shooting of her childhood best friend at the hands… [More]

#132

Adjusted Score: 93306%

Critics Consensus: Though Al Pacino and Robert De Niro share but a handful of screen minutes together, Heat is an engrossing crime drama that draws compelling performances from its stars — and confirms Michael Mann’s mastery of the genre.

Synopsis: A wily bank robber (Robert De Niro) planning retirement leaves scant clues for a Los Angeles detective (Al Pacino) with… [More]

#133

Adjusted Score: 96858%

Critics Consensus: Dark, cynical, and subversive, Heathers gently applies a chainsaw to the conventions of the high school movie — changing the game for teen comedies to follow.

Synopsis: Cool Veronica (Winona Ryder) and her quirky new boyfriend (Christian Slater) topple a high-school trio of too-cool Heathers…. [More]

#134

Adjusted Score: 96261%

Critics Consensus: Hedwig and the Angry Inch may very well be the next Rocky Horror midnight movie. It not only knows how to rock, but Hedwig’s story has an emotional poignancy.

Synopsis: A transsexual rock singer (John Cameron Mitchell) sues her successful protege (Michael Pitt) for plagiarism…. [More]

#135

Adjusted Score: 100747%

Critics Consensus: With death-defying action sequences and epic historic sweep, Hero offers everything a martial arts fan could ask for.

Synopsis: Flashbacks reveal how a warrior (Jet Li) stopped the elusive assassins (Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Maggie Cheung Man-yuk) who tried… [More]

#136

Adjusted Score: 105197%

Critics Consensus: A classic of the Western genre that broke with many of the traditions at the time, High Noon endures — in no small part thanks to Gary Cooper’s defiant, Oscar-winning performance.

Synopsis: On the verge of retirement, a marshal (Gary Cooper) stands alone to face a vengeful gunman and his gang…. [More]

#137

Adjusted Score: 107298%

Critics Consensus: Anchored by stellar performances from Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell, His Girl Friday is possibly the definitive screwball romantic comedy.

Synopsis: An ace reporter’s editor tries to stop her from remarrying in this remake of director Lewis Milestone’s “The Front Page.”… [More]

#138

Adjusted Score: 97907%

Critics Consensus: Anchored by Mads Mikkelsen’s sympathetic performance, The Hunt asks difficult questions with the courage to pursue answers head on.

Synopsis: A kindergarten teacher’s (Mads Mikkelsen) world collapses around him after one of his students (Annika Wedderkopp), who has a crush… [More]

#139

Adjusted Score: 102833%

Critics Consensus: Ikiru is a well-acted and deeply moving humanist tale about a man facing his own mortality, one of legendary director Akira Kurosawa’s most intimate films.

Synopsis: A rigid clerk (Takashi Shimura) resolves to do something of lasting importance after learning that he is dying of cancer…. [More]

#140

Adjusted Score: 100978%

Critics Consensus: Tense, funny, and thought-provoking all at once, and lifted by strong performances from Sydney Poitier and Rod Steiger, director Norman Jewison’s look at murder and racism in small-town America continues to resonate today.

Synopsis: A black Philadelphia detective (Sidney Poitier) helps a white Mississippi sheriff (Rod Steiger) solve a murder…. [More]

#141

Adjusted Score: 95207%

Critics Consensus: This understated romance, featuring good performances by its leads, is both visually beautiful and emotionally moving.

Synopsis: A man (Tony Leung Chiu Wai) and a woman (Maggie Cheung Man-yuk) living in a Singapore building wonder about the… [More]

#142

Adjusted Score: 100460%

Critics Consensus: Smart, innovative, and thrilling, Inception is that rare summer blockbuster that succeeds viscerally as well as intellectually.

Synopsis: A thief (Leonardo DiCaprio) who enters people’s dreams and steals their secrets gets a shot at redemption when he is… [More]

#143

Adjusted Score: 100571%

Critics Consensus: A classic Tarantino genre-blending thrill ride, Inglourious Basterds is violent, unrestrained, and thoroughly entertaining.

Synopsis: An Allied officer (Brad Pitt) and his team of Jewish soldiers join forces with a German actress and undercover agent… [More]

#144

Adjusted Score: 116066%

Critics Consensus: Inventive, gorgeously animated, and powerfully moving, Inside Out is another outstanding addition to the Pixar library of modern animated classics.

Synopsis: An 11-year-old girl’s (Kaitlyn Dias) five emotions try to guide her through a difficult transition after she moves from the… [More]

#145

Adjusted Score: 102170%

Critics Consensus: The endearing Iron Giant tackles ambitious topics and complex human relationships with a steady hand and beautifully animated direction from Brad Bird.

Synopsis: A malevolent government agent threatens to destroy the friendship between a boy and a huge alien robot…. [More]

#146

Adjusted Score: 105428%

Critics Consensus: Powered by Robert Downey Jr.’s vibrant charm, Iron Man turbo-charges the superhero genre with a deft intelligence and infectious sense of fun.

Synopsis: A wealthy industrialist (Robert Downey Jr.) builds an armored suit and uses it to defeat criminals and terrorists…. [More]

#147

Adjusted Score: 119469%

Critics Consensus: Capturing its stars and director at their finest, It Happened One Night remains unsurpassed by the countless romantic comedies it has inspired.

Synopsis: A newsman (Clark Gable) rides a bus and shares a cabin with a tycoon’s (Walter Connolly) runaway daughter (Claudette Colbert)…. [More]

#148

Adjusted Score: 106180%

Critics Consensus: The holiday classic to define all holiday classics, It’s a Wonderful Life is one of a handful of films worth an annual viewing.

Synopsis: Ruined by a miser (Lionel Barrymore) on Christmas Eve, a suicidal family man (James Stewart) sees life anew thanks to… [More]

#149

Adjusted Score: 109124%

Critics Consensus: Compelling, well-crafted storytelling and a judicious sense of terror ensure Steven Spielberg’s Jaws has remained a benchmark in the art of delivering modern blockbuster thrills.

Synopsis: A New England police chief (Roy Scheider), a shark hunter (Robert Shaw) and a scientist (Richard Dreyfuss) have a showdown… [More]

#150

Adjusted Score: 96607%

Critics Consensus: Stylish, thrilling, and giddily kinetic, John Wick serves as a satisfying return to action for Keanu Reeves — and what looks like it could be the first of a franchise.

Synopsis: New York City becomes the bullet-riddled playground of a former assassin (Keanu Reeves) as he hunts down the Russian mobsters… [More]


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