May 29, 2011

These Are a Few of My Favorite Films - Part 7

Before I present to you my favorite films of the 90s, I must apologize again for letting so much time pass by since I posted the last part. Anyway, unless you haven't read any of the previous parts of this feature, you should already know very well how this works. So without further ado, I allow you to check out my picks! 

Part 7: The 90s

5. Fargo (1996)
Fargo is a true American masterpiece (and when I use that word, I mean it). It couldn't possibly be any more unique: it's a murderous thriller set in the cold, snowy landscapes and cityscapes of North Dakota. And on top of that, it manages to make the sticky situation the characters find themselves in something that's darkly humorous-- or, should I say-- hilarious. This wonderful cross between comedy and thriller makes the film both intensely suspenseful and ridiculously fun. And that's something that's almost singular to the work of the Coen brothers.

4. Schindler's List (1993)
Spielberg is among the great directors who mastered both the artistic and money-making sides of film. However, with Schindler's List, it's clear that his aim was on following his lifelong passion for his Jewish heritage, rather than on making a pretty penny like he did with his many blockbusters. It's that very passion put into this grandiose Holocaust picture-- combined with the spot-on period reconstruction and character depictions-- that makes Schindler's List such a raw, emotional piece of cinema with so much heartfelt nostalgia. 

3. L.A. Confidential (1997)
I've always been crazy about film noir, and for me, L.A. Confidential is one of the few films that brought me all of the things I love about the genre (though it's technically a neo-noir), from elements of corruption to the femme fatale mold. All of the characters in this film are incredibly well-developed by the writer and wonderfully portrayed by the ensemble cast, which includes the talents of Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, Kim Basinger, Danny DeVito, and James Cromwell, among others. And though the film starts on a lighter foot with its upbeat opening, it soon becomes a real nail-biting experience. 

2. American Beauty (1999)
American Beauty has so much to say by saying so little, and in turn, I will refrain myself from going on and on about how perfect it is in my mind, and instead I will simply point out what there is to love: Conrad L. Hall's beautiful cinematography, Thomas Newman's hypnotic original score, Sam Mendes's outstanding direction, Kevin Spacey's and Annette Bening's miraculous lead performances, and Alan Ball's amazing screenplay which delivers very powerful themes and resonant messages about the true meaning of life and beauty. Both hilarious and poignant at times, American Beauty is a truly unforgettable film.


And now for number one...


1. Pulp Fiction (1994)
If I told you that the previous film is my second favorite film of all time, what would you make of this one? Yes, you guessed correctly. Pulp Fiction is indeed the film that holds the #1 spot on my list of all-time favorites. And why is that? Because it's so much fun! I could watch it a thousand times over and never get tired of it. With all of its blazing originality, creativity, and style, it creates its own mood and lets it become a part of the spectator. And like every Tarantino film, it's a pastiche made up of bits and pieces from a thousand other great movies, making it even more enjoyable for a movie-lover like myself.


Honorable Mention
Eyes Wide Shut
Reservoir Dogs
Fight Club
The Shawshank Redemption
Forrest Gump
Life Is Beautiful (La vita è bella)
The Truman Show
The Matrix
Jackie Brown
Boogie Nights
The Big Lebowski
The Thin Red Line
The Silence of the Lambs
The Usual Suspects
The Lion King
Toy Story

"Yeah, I'll get to it"
The Sixth Sense
Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Office Space
Princess Mononoke
Groundhog Day
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
Three Colors: Red (Trois couleurs: Rouge)
Good Will Hunting
Ed Wood
In the Name of the Father
La haine
Before Sunrise
Sling Blade


Check out the final partPart 8: The 00s!