Friday, November 6, 2015

Carter's Top 60 Films (November 2015)

Every so often (about annually it looks like) I compose a list of my top fifty or so favorite films. Here are the lists from November 2013 and August 2014. This time, as always, I have tried my best not to overthink the process, instead to go from the gut and write down the first fifty-ish titles that pop into mind. This list of sixty took me about fifteen minutes to get down:

Leviathan (2014)
Gummo (1997)
Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)
Jaws (1975)
Duel (1971)
Heat (1995)
Zero Dark Thirty (2012)
Slacker (1991)
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
The Terminator (1984)
Alien (1979)
Bladerunner (1982)
Chinatown (1975)
Double Indemnity (1944)
The Lady from Shanghai (1947)
Touch of Evil (1958)
The Third Man (1949)
Only Angels Have Wings (1939)
Rio Bravo (1959)
Holy Motors (2012)
Melancholia (2011)
Nosferatu (1922)
Nosferatu (1979)
King Kong (1933)
King Kong (1976)
Cure (1997)
Memories of Murder (2003)
Mother (2009)
Seven Samurai (1954)
Zodiac (2007)
Nashville (1975)
Stranger Than Paradise (1984)
Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)
Barry Lyndon (1975)
Eyes Wide Shut (1999)
The Shining (1980)
Walkabout (1971)
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
Three Colors: Blue (1993)
The Last Waltz (1978)
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)
Videodrome (1983)
The Thin Blue Line (1988)
Grizzly Man (2005)
Night of the Living Dead (1968)
The Heiress (1949)
Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
Das Boot (1981)
The Sting (1973)
When the Levees Broke (2006)
Now, Voyager (1942)
Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
Vertigo (1958)
Shampoo (1975)
The Parallax View (1974)
The Babadook (2014)
Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1949)
Election (1999)
Assault on Precinct 13 (1976)
Chuck&Buck (2000)

Randall Adams sez: "Errol Morris' The Thin Blue Line got me off death row. No shit!"

Notes, thoughts, comments:

The last five entries were added a few minutes after the initial fifty-five. The last three were added AFTER I looked back at the August 2014 list -- I had to be "reminded" of my love for Election, John Carpenter's Assault on Precinct 13, and Chuck&Buck. The first fifty-seven titles were written down very swiftly without any peeking at my previous lists.

The main criterion for a film's inclusion is: Is this a movie I get excited to watch at the mere mention of its name? And: Is this a film I have watched several times with ever-increasing returns?

Or, as I put it in 2014:
Remember, this is NOT a list of "must-see" classics provided by a film scholar or "expert," but rather a slapdash list of my "favorite" films at the present moment, the main criterion of value being how much pleasure I take from viewing and re-viewing these particular movies.
Noteworthy omissions:

First Blood nearly made the list again this time, but the truth is I haven't watched it in a few years. I have been thinking about it a lot recently though so maybe now that fall is here I should to give it a spin . . .

No Lynne Ramsay films made the list this time, nor any Coens, although I re-watched A Serious Man a couple of months ago and loved it even more than on previous viewings. So that one and Fargo probably belong up here too. Actually, a friend asked me for my thoughts on The Big Lebowski several months ago and I have slowly pecked away at a Coen Brothers post ever since . . .

I was tempted to put Nightcrawler (2014) on here, but chose to wait to make sure it passes the test of time.

The Terminator sez: "I'll be back . . . with more movie lists!"

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