20 Films (as
it surprisingly difficult to put this list together; particularly
the ordering. Any of the top 5 could easily be my number 1.
Black Swan (2010)
20 spot was hotly contested. I nearly went with 'The Skin I Live
In', just because it's so hugely affecting and I find myself thinking
about it quite often. However I've only watched it the once and
I think part of its brilliance is the shocking reveal of what's
going on, which is something you wouldn't get on repeated watchings,
so it lost out to 'Black Swan' which I've watched a couple of times.
It's dark, a bit strange and has ballet dancing! These things are
all positive film qualities for me.
it particularly difficult to rank the feature films of TV shows
I love, as although they should probably be seen as films in their
own right, how can you just ignore all the depth and background
that the TV episodes provide? 'Serenity' is the film sequel to the
TV show 'Firefly'. You can see if and where 'Firefly' has charted
on my Top 10 TV Drama / Sci-Fi chart here.
'Serenity' is one of those films that I just feel the need to watch
every now and again - I've definitely watched it far more times
than I've watched any of the TV episodes. I'm not even sure I can
really explain why - there's just something immensely watchable
about it - it's like the film version of comfort food; except it's
comfort food that can kick your ass.
Across The Universe (2007)
that I came across slightly randomly when my Dad was visiting me
in Cardiff and we went for a stroll around the city centre. We browsed
a few shops, including HMV, where we found this film on DVD. It
was amongst some sale items and the title attracted my Dad to pick
it up. He read the back and discovered it was a musical using songs
by The Beatles and had Eddie Izzard in it! Based purely on that
(well, also the cheap price), he bought it and we watched it that
evening. I loved it and have since bought my own copy. The appearance
of Eddie Izzard is fairly brief, plus, to balance it out, you do
also have to put up with an appearance by Bono, but it's worth it,
honest. I like the versions of the songs, plus there are some great
visuals in it (American soldiers carrying the Statue Of Liberty
into Vietnam as 'I Want You (She's So Heavy)' plays is particularly
Party Monster (2003)
on the true story of Michael Alig, this film features Macaulay Culkin
and Seth Green as drug-addled, eccentric, flamboyant club kids.
It's got a fun, camp and glittery side, but also a very very dark
side. Plus Marilyn Manson.
Me And You And Everyone We Know (2005)
funny and interesting film from Miranda July. Yes, that's all I'm
going to say about it - it's a difficult one to describe.
House Of D (2004)
and directed by David Duchovny (he's in it too, but only fairly
briefly). As a big fan of David's, I kept up-to-date with the production
of this film through the blogs and podcasts he posted online at
the time. Feeling invested in the film already, I had to see it
when it came out, and thankfully it didn't disappoint. It's a humourous
and touching coming-of-age story, with a great performance from
Robin Williams as the mentally challenged janitor Pappas.
Donnie Darko (2001)
forgot about this film when I was putting this chart together, but
it definitely deserves a placing. It's strange and dark, but with
a sense of humour, plus it requires a bit of thought and contemplation,
which is always a nice bonus.
enjoy a musical and I really love the direction in this. I've watched
it quite a bit and it always flies by. I do feel a bit bad that
I've not included any older musicals in this chart though. 'Calamity
Jane' is a particular favourite that should maybe have made it in
somewhere, but there are so many great films!
tickets to see this at Chapter in Cardiff and totally loved it.
It's by the same writers and director as 'Amelie' and it has a similar
quirky feel and story and cinematic style. It's about a man who
gets a bullet embedded in his brain and sets about destroying the
two big weapons manufacturers, aided by a band of misfits. So much
Blue Velvet (1986)
a fan of David Lynch's through watching 'Twin Peaks'. I think this
was the first film of his I watched, with the possible exception
of 'Fire Walk With Me'. Like a lot of my favourite films, it's quite
dark, disturbing and strange, but there are elements of humour in
there too. Plus Kyle MacLachlan's just awesome.
The X-Files Movies: 'Fight The Future' (1998) and 'I Want To Believe'
totally cheated and ranked both of these together. As a big X-Files
fan I couldn't miss them out, but I also didn't want them to take
up 2 placings. They're slightly strange bedfellows though as they're
very different films. The first film (known as 'Fight The Future')
is a pretty traditional Summer blockbuster; lots of action, big
explosions and special effects. However, the second film ('I Want
To Believe') is much slower, introspective and devoid of theatrics.
I think a lot of people were disappointed in it for that reason,
but I like that it's a totally different type of film. Plus you
get Billy Connolly as a paedophile priest! Ok, maybe I shouldn't
so pleased by that, but he plays it really well - ok, that sounds
even worse, I'm shutting up now.
Playing By Heart (1998)
piece where you jump between different characters' storylines. It's
got a pretty impressive cast, including Sean Connery, Angelina Jolie,
Gena Rowlands, Gillian Anderson and Jon Stewart!
Mulholland Drive (2001)
another David Lynch film. 'Blue Velvet' is pretty straightforward
for a David Lynch film, but this one's firmly in the strange and
in-need-of-deciphering camp. However, even if you don't fully understand
what's going on at certain points, it's a stylish, compelling and
rather sexy film. Plus you can then look up theories on the internet
afterwards - hoorah!
American Beauty (1999)
this at the cinema when I was at university and just thought it
was brilliant. Kevin Spacey and Annette Bening put in particularly
family type film on my list. It features singing, puppets and David
Bowie in tight trousers! What more could you ask for really?
Fight Club (1999)
purely on the title and the trailers, I really didn't think this
would be my type of film. A load of guys set up a club where they
punch each other? Oh, great. I only saw it because it was shown
at a mass slumber party type thing at the halls of residence I was
living in. Pretty quickly it became clear that it wasn't just a
film about guys punching each other and was actually rather brilliant.
I got it on DVD not too long afterwards.
Before Sunrise (1995) and Before Sunset (2004)
cheated and combined 2 films again. They're both fairly short though,
so you could watch them in tandem as one film that spans 9 years!
They're the kind of films that aren't suited to everyone as they're
heavily dialogue based and very little actually happens, it's all
about the dialogue and the relationship between the 2 characters.
Personally I love that though. The films are incredibly romantic
but not in a schmaltzy or overly sentimental way.
is another film that I first saw when I was at university. Someone
had rented it from Blockbuster (on VHS no less - Google it if you're
too young!) and we all crowded into their bedroom to watch it. I'd
not even heard of it before and had no notion of what to expect,
so it was a nice surprise to enjoy it so much that it's still one
of my favourite films. If you're not familiar with it, it takes
place backwards so you get a sense of what it's like to be the lead
character who has no short-term memory. This means you have to gradually
piece together what's going on and why things have led to the outcome
you see at the start of the film. It played in my mind for days
after first watching it.
quite a latecomer to this film; not watching it until 2009! I have
my boyfriend to thank for showing me the error of my ways (even
though he wasn't actually my boyfriend quite yet). It's quirky,
funny, heartwarming and has a lead character who reminds me quite
a bit of myself, albeit much more mischievous and, er, French.
2 Days In Paris (2007)
I said at the top of this page, any one of my top 5 could be my
number 1, so why exactly did I choose this one? Well, it's very
funny, it has a refreshingly realistic sense of romance about it
and it just makes me feel happy to watch it. I'm not sure that I
want to watch the sequel though - the reviews haven't been good
and I fear it will only disappoint.
a happy note to end this chart on - potential disappointment! Yay!