Screen Shot 2021-01-13 at 3.20.46 PMThe ongoing countdown of my Top 1000 films through 2011, covering the first century of film.  The film listed below are all 89 (low ****) until The Gunfighter after which they are 90 (low ****).  The TSPDT rankings starting with this post are from the 2021 list.  The introduction can be found here.

#700

investigationIndagine su un cittadino al di sopra di ogni sospetto
(Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion)

  • Director:  Elio Petri
  • Genre:  Drama
  • Distributor:  Columbia
  • Year:  1970  (OE: 1971)
  • Country:  Italy  (Italian)
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH, AA), Foreign (NH, AA, GG)
  • Entry Rank:  #275
  • The Film:  Back in the old days, a film could win the Oscar for Best Foreign Film in one year and be nominated for its Screenplay the next year.  This Italian film covers a lot of genres (Drama, Mystery, Crime) as a cop kills his mistress and then leaves clues about it.

#699

charlie_wilsons_warCharlie Wilson’s War

  • Director:  Mike Nichols
  • Genre:  Comedy (True Story)
  • Distributor:  Universal
  • Year:  2007
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (GG), Screenplay (CC, GG), Actor (GG), Actress (GG), S. Actor (NH, AA, BAFTA, CC, GG)
  • N.A. Gross:  $66,661,095
  • WW Gross:  $119,483,446
  • Entry Rank:  #651
  • The Film:  I’m only up to 1968 in the new Mike Nichols biography by Mark Harris so I don’t know if Nicholas knew this would be his final film but it’s a good one to go out on, a film that like Nichols’ previous film, Closer, was more respected by the Globes than by the Oscars (see – the Globes don’t always suck).  It takes the right mind to take a film about the way we covertly armed the Afghans while they were fighting the Soviets and turn it into a sly political Comedy, but then again writer Aaron Sorkin is great with true material. (I’ve finished the book now – Nichols planned to make more but they never materialized.)

#698

italwaysrainsIt Always Rains on Sunday

  • Director:  Robert Hamer
  • Genre:  Crime
  • Distributor:  Ealing
  • Year:  1947 (OE: 1949)
  • Country:  England
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH), A. Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH), S. Actress (NH, NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #115
  • The Film:  Fully reviewed here because it was a great adaptation but it’s also simply a great film, proof that Ealing could do dark stories as well as comedies (the year this hit the States the same director made Kind Hearts and Coronets for Ealing).  The bleak story of a woman who must deal with her former lover when he comes calling after escaping prison while she’s also dealing with the family that she’s become part of since he went away.

#697

tobeornottobeTo Be or Not to Be

  • Director:  Ernst Lubitsch
  • Genre:  Comedy (Satire)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  1942
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH), Screenplay (NH), Actor (NH), Actress (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #88
  • TSPDT Rank:  #100
  • The Film:  Some people actually over-rate this film with it landing in the Top 200 at the IMDb and the Top 100 at TSPDT perhaps because of the Lubitsch touch.  But it’s a great Comedy (later remade but not nearly as good with Mel Brooks and Anne Bancroft) about a Polish acting troupe in the early days of World War II and how they react to the war.  The rare example of a film that mocks the war while the war is still going on.

#696

hospitalThe Hospital

  • Director:  Arthur Hiller
  • Genre:  Comedy (Black)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  1971
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH, WGA, AA, BAFTA, GG), Actor (NH, AA, BAFTA, GG), S. Actress (GG)
  • N.A. Gross:  $19,711,560
  • Entry Rank:  #282
  • The Film:  The poster to the right actually kind of perfectly sums up the black Comedy aspects of this film.  George C. Scott, a year removed from refusing the Oscar, plays a chief of staff for a hospital and it’s driving him nuts but that doesn’t make the film any less funny or the humor any less dark with lines like “Now what in hell am I going to tell this boy Schaefer’s parents? That a substitute nurse assassinated him because she couldn’t tell the doctors from the patients on the floor?” and “I mean, where do you train your nurses, Mrs. Christie – Dachau?”

#695

A_Letter_To_Momo_movie_posterももへの手紙
(A Letter to Momo)

  • Director:  Hiryuki Okiura
  • Genre:  Kids  (Animated – Anime)
  • Distributor:  GKIDS
  • Year:  2011 (OE: 2013)
  • Country:  Japan (Japanese)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH), Animated (NH)
  • N.A. Gross:  $71,712
  • WW Gross:  $6,748,888
  • Entry Rank:  #695
  • The Film:  I first heard of this film on the day in December 2013 when the Academy announced the eligible Animated films for that year.  What a treat to discover a film like this.  Momo has recently moved from Tokyo and she’s holding onto an unfinished letter to her recently deceased father when suddenly several mystical creatures come barreling into her life and turn everything upside down.  A beautiful, moving film about dealing with your grief when you are still young.

#694

design-for-living-movie-poster-1933-1020455932Design for Living

  • Director:  Ernst Lubitsch
  • Genre:  Comedy (Play Adaptation – Coward)
  • Distributor:  Paramount
  • Year:  1933
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Director (NH), A. Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH), S. Actor (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #34
  • TSPDT Rank:  #953
  • The Film:  It’s strange for me to have two Lubitsch films so close together since I generally consider him over-rated.  But then again, these two films combined for one Oscar nomination (Score for To Be or Not To Be) and Lubitsch was nominated for Director three times and he directed six films nominated for Picture and none of those were anyway close to these two films.  This one, fully reviewed here, is about two men who manage to fall in love with the same woman and she can’t really decide between them so she marries Edward Everett Horton instead.  That’ll teach them!

#693

my_beautiful_laundretteMy Beautiful Laundrette

  • Director:  Stephen Frears
  • Genre:  Drama
  • Distributor:  Orion Classics
  • Year:  1985 (OE: 1986)
  • Country:  England
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH, AA, BAFTA, NYFC, NSFC), S. Actor (NH, BAFTA, NYFC, NBR)
  • N.A. Gross:  $2,451,545
  • Entry Rank:  #383
  • The Film:  Daniel Day-Lewis won the NYFC and NBR for two films and didn’t earn an Oscar nomination for either which is typical.  Here he’s a punk who hassles a young man of Pakistani descent who’s trying to run a laundromat until they fall in love with each other and turn it into a club.  It was a nice contrast against his uptight prig in A Room with a View.

#692

Amour_fuiteL’amour en fuite
(Love on the Run)

  • Director:  François Truffaut
  • Genre:  Comedy
  • Distributor:  New World Pictures
  • Year:  1979
  • Country:  France  (French)
  • Major Awards:  A. Screenplay (NH), Foreign (NH)
  • N.A. Gross:  $509 (ri)
  • Entry Rank:  #340
  • The Film:  This was the fifth, and sadly final, film in the adventures of Antoine Doinel as Truffaut would die just a few years later.  But it’s the first to appear on the countdown (two more will be above it) and it’s a good conclusion because he’s come so far in the 20 years that we’ve come to know him.  A full review can be found here.

#691

heathers_ver1Heathers

  • Director:  Michael Lehmann
  • Genre:  Comedy (Black)
  • Distributor:  New World Pictures
  • Year:  1989
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH)
  • N.A. Gross:  $1,108,462
  • WW Gross:  $1,163,969
  • Entry Rank:  #423
  • The Film:  Is it possible I’ve never had cause to write a review of Heathers?  Maybe because it was a cult film so quickly that it was never really under-appreciated.  I can tell you the minute I first watched it, sitting in the Newkirk basement at 30 Manning Boulevard in the last week of August of 1989 on video with Rachel and Leah the week we took my sister Stacy to Smith.  I loved it from the start and since I hadn’t yet seen Beetlejuice and didn’t realize this was the same actress from Lucas, this real introduction to Winona Ryder melted my brain and perhaps put the name Veronica permanently on my radar.  I’ve loved the film from the minute I first saw it, first felt it’s dark-edged Comedy just as I was finishing my first year of high school and reveled in the fact that it didn’t back away from a fairly dark ending.  I suppose I should just be lucky that my teenage angst bullshit never had a body count.  Fuck me gently with a chainsaw indeed.

#690

eat_drink_man_woman飲食男女
(Eat Drink Man Woman)

  • Director:  Ang Lee
  • Genre:  Comedy (Romantic)
  • Distributor:  Samuel Goldwyn Pictures
  • Year:  1994
  • Country:  Taiwan  (Mandarin)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH, AA, BAFTA, GG, NBR)
  • N.A. Gross:  $7,294,403
  • Entry Rank:  #473
  • The Film:  Ang Lee had won a lot of people over with The Wedding Banquet (which was in the first post) but he upped his game here with this wonderful Comedy about a chef who is living with his three adult daughters.  Just a year later, Lee would not just be making films in English but the best film being made in English that year.

#689

parallax_viewThe Parallax View

  • Director:  Alan J. Pakula
  • Genre:  Suspense
  • Distributor:  Paramount
  • Year:  1974
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  A. Screenplay (NH, WGA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $2,149,400
  • WW Gross:  $2,942  (ri)
  • Entry Rank:  #307
  • The Film:  The most under-appreciated film of the year of my birth is one of the great examples of paranoia in American film in the 1970s, a decade where it peaked.  A dark, bleak thriller that likely wouldn’t be made today that looks into the under-belly of a conspiracy and comes out the other side.  Full review here.

#688

elmer_gantryElmer Gantry

  • Director:  Richard Brooks
  • Genre:  Drama (Lit Adaptation – Lewis)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  1960
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (AA, BAFTA, GG), Director (DGA, GG), A. Screenplay (NH, WGA, AA), Actor (NH, AA, BAFTA, GG, NYFC), Actress (BAFTA, GG), S. Actress (NH, AA, GG, NBR)
  • N.A. Gross:  $11,336,000
  • Entry Rank:  #211
  • The Film:  What a difference an era can make.  Elmer Gantry, a long (146 minutes) film about a hypocritical preacher made the equivalent of over $100 million in today’s box office.  Can you imagine a film like this doing that?  But it had stars and it was very well-written and it was from a very good book (as you can read here) and people used to go to see very different kinds of films.

#687

samurai宮本武蔵
(Samurai I: Miyamoto Musashi)

  • Director:  Hiroshi Inagaki
  • Genre:  Action (Samurai)
  • Distributor:  Toho Company
  • Year:  1955
  • Country:  Japan  (Japanese)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH, AA)
  • Entry Rank:  #170
  • The Film:  The first of a trilogy (and the best by a long way).  It’s adapted from one of the most famous novels (and before that, stories) in Japanese history.  Fully reviewed here.  Proof that Toshiro Mifune didn’t have to be teamed up with Kurosawa to be a brilliant samurai.  In fact, this film actually pre-dates the bulk of Mifune’s samurai work with Kurosawa.  The last film to win Foreign Film at the Oscars before it became a competitive award.

#686

cool_hand_lukeCool Hand Luke

  • Director:  Stuart Rosenberg
  • Genre:  Drama  (Prison)
  • Distributor:  Warner Bros.
  • Year:  1967
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Director (DGA), A. Screenplay (NH, AA), Actor (NH, AA, GG), S. Actor (NH, AA, GG)
  • N.A. Gross:  $16,217,773
  • Entry Rank:  #255
  • TSPDT Rank:  #805
  • The Film:  For people who only casually care about films, the stats about this film would probably be surprising: that it wasn’t nominated for Best Picture, that Newman didn’t win the Oscar and that it was George Kennedy who won Supporting Actor when Strother Martin’s speech is among the most famous in film history.  And let’s not forget about the eggs, a scene so famous I saw it the other night in a Simpsons episode that was made 50 years after this film was released.  Fully reviewed here.

#685

shutter_islandShutter Island

  • Director:  Martin Scorsese
  • Genre:  Mystery
  • Distributor:  Paramount
  • Year:  2010
  • Country:  U.S.
  • N.A. Gross:  $128,012,934
  • WW Gross:  $294,805,697
  • Entry Rank:  #672
  • TSPDT Rank:  #953
  • The Film:  The IMDb page for this film shows the proliferation of various film groups I don’t care about as it lists this film, which is vastly under-appreciated, with 11 wins and 66 nominations while my own spreadsheet lists it with two noms (CAS, ADG).  But, released away from awards season, it became one of Marty’s biggest box office hits and he encompassed all the darkness of the original Lehane novel.  No full review yet but there will be when I catch up to 2010 with Adapted Screenplay.  The third Marty film in the Top 1000.

#684

eight_women_ver18 femmes
(8 Women)

  • Director:  Francois Ozon
  • Genre:  Musical (Surreal)
  • Distributor:  Universal (Focus Features)
  • Year:  2002
  • Country:  France  (French)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH)
  • N.A. Gross:  $3,098,776
  • WW Gross:  $42,426,583
  • Entry Rank:  #566
  • The Film:  I was still fairly unfamiliar with Ozon when I saw this film and this offbeat dark Musical completely won me over with great French actresses young and old (and barely a male to be seen).  It didn’t take me long to realize that Ozon was exactly my kind of director.  Surprisingly, the right opportunity hasn’t arisen for me to write a full review.

#683

ascentВосхождение
(The Ascent)

  • Director:  Larisa Shepitko
  • Genre:  War  (WWII)
  • Distributor:  Mosfilm Studios
  • Year:  1977 (OE: 1978)
  • Country:  Soviet Union  (Russian)
  • Major Awards:  Director (NH), Screenplay (NH), Foreign (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #320
  • TSPDT Rank:  #597
  • The Film:  It’s rare for a film that is this good (and not just my opinion on that as TSPDT actually ranks it higher) to have less than 50 external reviews on the IMDb and that’s part of why it was my under-appreciated film for 1978 and fully reviewed here.  It made Shepitko just the second director to win the Golden Bear in Berlin but her career was cut short when she killed in a car crash in 1979 at the age of 41.

#682

magicianAnsiktet
(The Magician)

  • Director:  Ingmar Bergman
  • Genre:  Drama
  • Distributor:  Janus Films
  • Year:  1958  (OE: 1960)
  • Country:  Sweden  (Swedish)
  • Major Awards:  Picture (BAFTA), Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH), S. Actress (NH), Foreign (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #192
  • The Film:  Like Marty, this is the third film from Bergman to pop up on the list.  This film about a traveling magician and the authorities he comes up against is made with his standard troupe but it often gets overlooked seeing how it comes between Wild Strawberries and The Virgin Spring.  Because it’s original and couldn’t make the Top 5 in a stacked year like 1960 I haven’t fully reviewed it.

#681

lenottibianche-1Le notti bianche
(White Nights)

  • Director:  Luchino Visconti
  • Genre:  Drama (Romance)
  • Distributor:  United Motion Pictures
  • Year:  1957  (OE: 1963)
  • Country:  Italy  (Italian)
  • Major Awards:  A. Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #185
  • The Film:  You might notice that this film is not nominated for Foreign Film at the Nighthawks and that’s because there are actually five other foreign language films in the Top 450 in this year.  But this is the film that introduced me to Visconti and it’s a heart-breaking romance from the short story by Dostoevsky.  Fully reviewed here.

#680

tale_of_two_cities_ver2A Tale of Two Cities

  • Director:  Jack Conway
  • Genre:  Drama  (Lit Adaptation – Dickens)
  • Distributor:  MGM
  • Year:  1935  (OE: 1936)
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH, AA), A. Screenplay (NH), Actor (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #44
  • The Film:  One of Hollywood’s first examples in the Sound Era of taking a great book and making a great film out of it.  It might have been better if they had an actor willing to take both roles but Colman is so perfect as Sydney Carton that you get past that.  Fully reviewed here or at least that links to earlier reviews.  A rare case of the Academy correctly nominating a film and then giving it almost nothing else (just one other nomination).

#679

carrieCarrie

  • Director:  Brian De Palma
  • Genre:  Horror  (Stephen King)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  1976
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH), Director (NH), A. Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH, AA, GG, NSFC), S. Actress (NH, AA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $33,800,000
  • Entry Rank:  #312
  • TSPDT Rank:  #354
  • The Film:  This film, on the other hand, is a great example of elevating a film beyond what the book deserved.  It wasn’t as bad as I remembered when I went back to review it but it’s a weak first novel and it’s really the success of Salem’s Lot, this film and the The Shining that catapulted King to deserved fame.  That sight of Spacek covered in the blood is still one of the indelible images of Horror cinema.

#678

beginnersBeginners

  • Director:  Mike Mills
  • Genre:  Drama  (Romance)
  • Distributor:  Universal  (Focus Features)
  • Year:  2011
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH), S. Actor (NH, SAG, AA, BAFTA, CC, GG, LAFC, NBR)
  • N.A. Gross:  $5,790,894
  • WW Gross:  $14,311,701
  • Entry Rank:  #678
  • TSPDT Rank:  #716  (21-C)
  • The Film:  This film won me over in its opening moments (it didn’t hurt that Ewan is one of my favorite actors) but it’s the performances that really carry it through and Plummer, though beaten at most of the critics groups by Albert Brooks, pretty much ran away with the awards groups.  A reminder that sometimes you don’t really get to know a parent until late in their life.

#677

LarondeposterLa ronde

  • Director:  Max Ophuls
  • Genre:  Drama  (Costume)
  • Distributor:  Commercial Pictures
  • Year:  1950  (OE: 1951)
  • Country:  France  (French)
  • Major Awards:  Picture (BAFTA), A. Screenplay (AA), Foreign (NH)
  • WW Gross:  $852  (ri)
  • Entry Rank:  #127
  • The Film:  Long before Pulp Fiction there was this film that taught us that where we come out of a film is not necessarily the last thing that happened in the film.  Later remade by Roger Vadim which just proves that you really shouldn’t remake classic films.  A great script that can’t break my Top 5 in one of the best years for adapted screenplays.  Fully reviewed here.

#676

vertigoVertigo

  • Director:  Alfred Hitchcock
  • Genre:  Suspense
  • Distributor:  Paramount
  • Year:  1958
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Director (DGA), A. Screenplay (NH), Actor (NH)
  • N.A. Gross:  $7,705,225
  • WW Gross:  $7,797,300
  • Entry Rank:  #188
  • TSPDT Rank:  #2
  • The Film:  One of those films I’ve always had a hard time writing about because while I clearly think it’s a great film, I also clearly don’t think it’s the all-time great film that so many do.  The Oscars are on my side for once, only giving it two nominations but then again they gave Best Picture to Gigi that year so what do they know?  I tried to get to the heart of my feelings in my full review.  This makes Hitchcock the third director on the list with 5 films.

#675

day_of_the_jackal_ver1The Day of the Jackal

  • Director:  Fred Zinnemann
  • Genre:  Suspense  (Hitman)
  • Distributor:  Universal
  • Year:  1973
  • Country:  U.K. / France  (English / Italian / French)
  • Major Awards:  Picture (BAFTA, GG), Director (BAFTA, GG), A. Screenplay (NH, BAFTA, GG), S. Actor (BAFTA), S. Actress (BAFTA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $16,056,255
  • Entry Rank:  #291
  • The Film:  The films I actually saw because my mother recommended them to me are an odd bunch and this is one of the oddest.  I suppose in one sense it does have a happy ending.  But for the most part, it’s a fascinating, suspenseful look at an assassin as he keeps to himself and plans to kill De Gaulle.  A big seller and a very good adaptation as I point out in my review.  The first Zinnemann film on the list but he’ll have more.

#674

angelsAngels with Dirty Faces

  • Director:  Michael Curtiz
  • Genre:  Crime  (Gangster)
  • Distributor:  Warner Bros.
  • Year:  1938
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Director (NH, AA), Screenplay (NH, AA), Actor (NH, AA, NYFC, NBR)
  • Entry Rank:  #59
  • The Film:  One of the real oddities in Oscar history.  One of just two films that was nominated for Director and Screenplay but not Picture in the original expanded BP Era (and Curtiz was nominated twice and yet one of his Best Picture nominees wasn’t one of them) and Cagney won both critics awards and didn’t win the Oscar (losing to Spencer Tracy who had won the Oscar just the year before).  But Cagney is great as the kid who gets caught and becomes a criminal but is still friends with the kid who didn’t get caught and became a priest.  Fully reviewed here.  The first Curtiz film on the list; he’ll have more as well.

#673

littlefoxesThe Little Foxes

  • Director:  William Wyler
  • Genre:  Drama  (Play Adaptation – Hellman)
  • Distributor:  RKO Radio
  • Year:  1941
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH, AA), Director (NH, AA), A. Screenplay (NH, AA), Actress (NH, AA), S. Actor (NH), S. Actress (NH, NH, AA, AA)
  • Entry Rank:  #79
  • The Film:  Bette Davis kind of doing what she does best: being awful to everyone.  She plays the domineering mother in Lilian Hellman’s hit play while newcomer Teresa Wright wins my heart over as her betrayed daughter.  A big hit at the Oscar nominations but it went home empty-handed (it would take 16 years for another film to tie its 0 for 9 and until 1977 for a film to beat it).  But a great film that doesn’t go home empty-handed at the Nighthawks and fully reviewed here.  The second Wyler film on the list.

#672

heaven_can_waitHeaven Can Wait

  • Director:  Warren Beatty  /  Buck Henry
  • Genre:  Comedy  (Romantic)
  • Distributor:  Paramount
  • Year:  1978
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (AA, GG), Director (DGA, AA), A. Screenplay (NH, WGA, AA), Actor (NH, AA, GG), S. Actor (AA), S. Actress (NH, AA, GG)
  • N.A. Gross:  $81,640,278
  • Entry Rank:  #316
  • The Film:  In 1941, Little Foxes went 0 for 9 and it took until 1977 for that record to be broken.  In 1941, Orson Welles was nominated for Picture, Director, Screenplay and Actor and it took until 1978 for Warren Beatty to join him.  This film isn’t quite as good as the original version (Here Comes Mr. Jordan) but it was a huge hit (adjusted for inflation that’s over $300 million) and in kind of a weak year, was a big hit at the Oscars as well.

#671

kluteKlute

  • Director:  Alan J. Pakula
  • Genre:  Suspense
  • Distributor:  Warner Bros.
  • Year:  1971
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH, WGA, AA, GG), Actress (NH, AA, BAFTA, GG, NYFC, NSFC)
  • N.A. Gross:  $17,440,000
  • Entry Rank:  #270
  • The Film:  The first of Pakula’s informal paranoia trilogy, it obviously got more awards respect than The Parallax View but of course not nearly as much as All the President’s Men.  The film that proved that They Shoot Horses wasn’t a fluke for Fonda.  Interestingly, I’ve never had call to review it as it’s just outside the Top 5 for the year.

#670

face_to_faceAnsikte mot ansikte
(Face to Face)

  • Director:  Ingmar Bergman
  • Genre:  Drama  (Tragedy)
  • Distributor:  Paramount
  • Year:  1976
  • Country:  Sweden  (Swedish)
  • Major Awards:  Director (AA), Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH, AA, BAFTA, GG, NYFC, LAFC, NBR), Foreign (NH, GG, LAFC)
  • Entry Rank:  #305
  • The Film:  One of my most memorable film watching experiences as I spent years trying to get the film, finally found it at Movie Madness and was 40 minutes into it when Veronica’s water broke.  They didn’t charge me late fees but it was another year before I got a chance to rent it again and watch it over.  Liv Ullmann, in the midst of her amazing Bergman decade, is a psychiatrist in the midst of a nervous breakdown.  The only time the Oscars nominated Bergman for Director but not Screenplay.

#669

killerDie xue shuang xiong
(The Killer)

  • Director:  John Woo
  • Genre:  Crime  (Hitman)
  • Distributor:  Circle Releasing
  • Year:  1989  (OE: 1991)
  • Country:  Hong Kong  (Cantonese / Mandarin / Japanese)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #405
  • TSPDT Rank:  #754
  • The Film:  If your idea of the most stylish way of shooting a gun does not involve jumping sideways while holding two guns in your hand then you are the wrong age and I feel sorry for you.  Chow Yun-Fat proves that he’s the most stylish man to ever hold a gun and John Woo wins over legions of fans before moving to the States and losing most of them.  I was actually already a Woo fan before I saw it because I saw Hard Boiled first but this is the better film.

#668

CloselywatchedtrainsOstre sledované vlaky
(Closely Watched Trains)

  • Director:  Jiri Menzel
  • Genre:  Comedy
  • Distributor:  Sigma III Corp
  • Year:  1967  (OE: 1968)
  • Country:  Czechoslovakia
  • Major Awards:  Picture (BAFTA), Director (DGA), A. Screenplay (NH), Foreign (NH, AA, GG)
  • WW Gross:  $34,198  (ri)
  • Entry Rank:  #247
  • TSPDT Rank:  #471
  • The Film:  Ah, to be young and in love and having your first brush with sex and to get to deal with fighting the Nazis all at the same time.  What’s amazing is how this film is able to be a Comedy (in spite of the ending).  One of the films that heralded the arrival of the Czech New Wave.  Fully reviewed here.

#667

sawdustGycklarnas afton
(Sawdust and Tinsel; The Naked Night)

  • Director:  Ingmar Bergman
  • Genre:  Drama
  • Distributor:  Times Film Corp.
  • Year:  1953  (OE: 1956)
  • Country:  Sweden  (Swedish)
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH), Actress (NH), Foreign (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #147
  • TSPDT Rank:  #845
  • The Film:  It was Monika that helped Bergman break through but this is the film that really showed his depth, his first great film and another in his triumphs with Harriet Andersson (before he would move on to Ullmann).  Just a few films after his fourth, we get Bergman’s 5th film on the list.

#666

let_the_right_one_inLåt den rätte komma in
(Let the Right One In)

  • Director:  Tomas Alfredson
  • Genre:  Horror  (Vampire)
  • Distributor:  Magnolia Pictures (Magnet Releasing)
  • Year:  2008
  • Country:  Sweden  (Swedish)
  • Major Awards:  Director (NH), Foreign (NH, BAFTA, CC, BSFC, CFC)
  • N.A. Gross:  $2,122,065
  • WW Gross:  $11,227,336
  • Entry Rank:  #628
  • TSPDT Rank:  #626
  • The Film:  If I had told you at the top that there were four Swedish films on this part of the list what were the odds that you would guess that the top one of the four was not a Bergman film?  I’m just about to re-read the novel so I can write about it for my 2008 piece so there’s no full review yet.  But this is a brilliant vampire film, moody and quiet and then suddenly bursting with life and energy (and far superior to the American remake).

#665

Quai_des_brumesLe quai des brumes
(Port of Shadows)

  • Director:  Marcel Carné
  • Genre:  Drama
  • Distributor:  Film Alliance of the United States
  • Year:  1938  (OE: 1940)
  • Country:  France (French)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH, NBR)
  • Entry Rank:  #58
  • TSPDT Rank:  #828
  • The Film:  Limited at the Nighthawk Awards because it took until 1940 and that year is just too damn stacked in every category.  But this is a great film, teaming once of France’s best directors with the man who is easily its best actor as Jean Gabin plays a deserter living in the underbelly of La Havre.

#664

manwholaughsThe Man Who Laughs

  • Director:  Paul Leni
  • Genre:  Drama  (Lit Adaptation – Hugo)
  • Distributor:  Universal
  • Year:  1928  (OE: 1929)
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH), Director (NH), A. Screenplay (NH), Actor (NH), S. Actress (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #18
  • The Film:  Though the Oscars ignored it, this film got a big boost at the Nighthawks when I realized it actually was eligible in 1929 instead of 1928.  Veidt’s performance is magnificent as the poor scarred protagonist of Hugo’s novel.  The film, of course, would become culturally important for inspiring the creation of the Joker a decade later.  Fully reviewed here (in the wrong year).

#663

gone_with_the_wind_ver1Gone with the Wind

  • Director:  Victor Fleming
  • Genre:  Drama  (Epic)
  • Distributor:  MGM
  • Year:  1939
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (NH, AA), Director (NH, AA), A. Screenplay (AA), Actor (NH, AA), Actress (NH, AA, NYFC), S. Actress (NH, NH, AA, AA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $200,852,579
  • WW Gross:  $400,176,459
  • Entry Rank:  #62
  • TSPDT Rank:  #108
  • The Film:  It took a long time before I was willing to concede that between the production values, the directing, the epic scale and the magnificent acting that this is indeed a great film because the story is so insipid, most of the dialogue is ridiculous and of course, the ridiculous glorification of the South.  It is what it is.  A full review here where I also take down the book.

#662

la-bete-humaine-french-movie-poster-mdLa bête humaine

  • Director:  Jean Renoir
  • Genre:  Crime  (Lit Adaptation – Zola)
  • Distributor:  Century Park Pictures
  • Year:  1938  (OE: 1940)
  • Country:  France  (French)
  • Major Awards:  S. Actor (NH), Foreign (NH)
  • Entry Rank:  #56
  • TSPDT Rank:  #885
  • The Film:  The same great French star in the same year (and hard-hit at the Nighthawks because it’s also the same OEY) but a different director.  This time it’s Renoir taking the reins as he takes Gabin through one of the great French novels of the 19th Century (or really, any century).  Fully reviewed here but I also took on the book here.  The second Renoir film on the list.

#661

ben_hurBen-Hur

  • Director:  William Wyler
  • Genre:  Drama  (Epic – Biblical)
  • Distributor:  MGM
  • Year:  1959
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (AA, BAFTA, GG, NYFC), Director (NH, DGA, AA, GG), A. Screenplay (WGA, AA), Actor (AA, GG), S. Actor (NH, AA, GG, NBR)
  • N.A. Gross:  $74,422,622
  • Entry Rank:  #189
  • TSPDT Rank:  #684
  • The Film:  Appropriate that it’s so close to Gone with the Wind as it’s very similar – great production values, great directing, strong acting, weak script.  It has a better script than Wind (although Wind ironically won the Oscar while that was literally the only film this didn’t win for) but the acting isn’t quite as strong (also ironically, there was disagreement on the acting as the performance that won the Globe is not the performance that earned the other plaudits).  There is, of course, the massive chariot scene, but there is also moralizing about Christ.  Full review here and again, I’m not a fan of the book.  Wyler’s second film in this part and third on the list.

#660

LEAD Technologies Inc. V1.01 Sized3000

The Gunfighter

  • Director:  Henry King
  • Genre:  Western
  • Distributor:  Fox  (20th-Century Fox)
  • Year:  1950
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH, WGA, AA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $4,290,000  (@-re)
  • Entry Rank:  #120
  • The Film:  Henry King was a major Studio Era director (two Oscar noms, seven films nominated for Best Picture) but this is his only great film and his only film in the Top 1000.  Gregory Peck plays older than he is as a gunfighter tired of killing but who everyone is trying to pick off because he’s at the top.

#659

morethemerrierThe More the Merrier

  • Director:  George Stevens
  • Genre:  Comedy
  • Distributor:  Columbia
  • Year:  1943
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (AA), Director (AA, NYFC), Screenplay (NH, AA), Actress (NH, AA), S. Actor (NH, AA)
  • Entry Rank:  #84
  • The Film:  George Stevens wouldn’t really hit his stride until the 50s (two of his four big films in the decade make the Top 1000 later) but this is his first great film, a hilarious Comedy dealing with wartime housing shortages in Washington D.C. that actually won Charles Coburn the Oscar over Claude Rains.  Fully reviewed here.  It’s got a hilarious ending that made Veronica exclaim out loud.

#658

ghostbusters_ver2Ghostbusters

  • Director:  Ivan Reitman
  • Genre:  Sci-Fi  (Comedy)
  • Distributor:  Columbia
  • Year:  1984
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (GG), Screenplay (NH), Actor (GG)
  • N.A. Gross:  $243,187,079
  • WW Gross:  $295,212,467
  • Entry Rank:  #349
  • TPSDT Rank:  #701
  • The Film:  One of the biggest films of the 80s and one they just can’t leave well enough alone as the next film in the series might finally come out this summer.  The success in 1984 of this and Beverly Hills Cop (the two films held the top box office spot for most of nine months) proved that SNL alumni could make really good, really funny Comedies and then almost everything else since disproved that.  Because it got bumped from my Top 5 in 1984 I’ve never reviewed it.  It’s got a lot of lines that have become well-known among my friends while only being funny in context (“Tell him about the twinkie”, “It’s a sign all right”) while of course other lines are funny even without the context (“We came, we saw, we kicked its ass!”  “Yes, it’s true.  This man has no dick.”  “Dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria!”).

#657

ides_of_marchThe Ides of March

  • Director:  George Clooney
  • Genre:  Drama  (Political)
  • Distributor:  Columbia
  • Year:  2011
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (GG), Director (GG), A. Screenplay (NH, AA, BAFTA, GG), Actor (GG), S. Actor (BAFTA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $40,962,534
  • WW Gross:  $76,338,111
  • Entry Rank:  #657
  • The Film:  A hit at the Globes but the only Picture-Director-Screenplay nominee at the Globes in the Expanded BP Era to fail to earn a Picture nomination at the Oscars so far.  A cynical look at what happens when a young idealist gets involved in a presidential campaign with a great ensemble cast.

#656

silver_citySilver City

  • Director:  John Sayles
  • Genre:  Mystery  (Satire)
  • Distributor:  NewMarket
  • Year:  2004
  • Country:  U.S.
  • N.A. Gross:  $1,020,656
  • WW Gross:  $1,384,395
  • Entry Rank:  #568
  • The Film:  From a film the Globes championed to a film that no one but me championed.  I don’t deliberately put films together like this but this takes a more humorous view of politics than Ides of March though it’s just as cynical.  It’s also much less appreciated (no awards noms, a much lower IMDb rating) and far fewer people have seen it (aside from the low box office, it has less than 1/60th the votes on the IMDb that Ides has).  Ides was adapted from a play derived from the Dean campaign while Cooper in this film is clearly modeled on W.  Full review here where I listed it as the under-appreciated film of 2004.  Already the fourth Sayles film on the list.

#655

lenny_ver2Lenny

  • Director:  Bob Fosse
  • Genre:  Drama  (Biopic)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  1974
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (AA), Director (AA), A. Screenplay (NH, AA), Actor (NH, AA), Actress (AA)
  • N.A. Gross:  $24,420,000  (@-re)
  • Entry Rank:  #285
  • The Film:  It’s the first Fosse film on the list but then again he only made five films.  Fosse doesn’t just give us a straight Biopic, but brings us in and out of Lenny Bruce’s life, letting Hoffman’s performance pave the way.  Adapted from the play but Fosse really went his own way as you can see in my full review.  The rematch from the 1972 Oscars that Fosse lost.  Just one of 8 films all-time to earn the big 5 noms at the Oscars and lose them all.

#654

stranger_than_fictionStranger than Fiction

  • Director:  Marc Forster
  • Genre:  Comedy  (Surreal)
  • Distributor:  Columbia
  • Year:  2006
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Screenplay (NH, WGA, CC, NBR), Actor (GG), S. Actress (NH, CC)
  • N.A. Gross:  $40,660,952
  • WW Gross:  $53,653,224
  • Entry Rank:  #593
  • The Film:  Still the only proof I’ve ever seen that Will Ferrell can act, this offbeat Comedy has a fascinating idea at the core of it (a person discovers that he is actually a character in a novel – but it’s just him and not the entire world) and then goes into some interesting places with it.  It also deals with the notion as to whether art or life is more important.  Not what you would expect from the man who directed Monster’s Ball and Kite Runner.

#653

twenty_four_hour_party_people24 Hour Party People

  • Director:  Michael Winterbottom
  • Genre:  Musical  (Rock and Roll)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  2002
  • Country:  England
  • N.A. Gross:  $1,184,096
  • WW Gross:  $2,801,397
  • Entry Rank:  #541
  • TSPDT Rank:  #368  (21-C)
  • The Film:  It’s not widely viewed and the awards groups passed it by (it can’t break through in the crowded year of 2002 but does well with the Comedy awards) but it’s a great, interesting film that looks at one of the most important men in the history of the music industry and his offbeat success.  A brilliant soundtrack and some of the moments that make me laugh the loudest when watching a film (“Pity you didn’t sign the Smiths” “This is it, the birth of rave culture … This is the moment when even the white man starts dancing.” “Jazz is the last refuge of the untalented. Jazz musicians enjoy themselves more than anyone listening to them does.”).  Winterbottom doesn’t have as high a reputation as many directors but this is his third film on the list and he’s not done.

#652

MoonBluePosterThe Moon is Blue

  • Director:  Otto Preminger
  • Genre:  Comedy  (Romantic)
  • Distributor:  United Artists
  • Year:  1953
  • Country:  U.S.
  • Major Awards:  Picture (BAFTA), A. Screenplay (NH, WGA), Actor (NH, GG), Actress (NH, AA), S. Actress (NH)
  • N.A. Gross:  $7,700,000 (@-re)
  • Entry Rank:  #140
  • The Film:  A hit at the time but mostly forgotten today, not the least of which is because for a long time it was extremely difficult to get ahold of it.  But this film, while a bit dated, has aged better than you would expect because it’s charming and funny about sex and not just trying to titillate.  An excellent ensemble Comedy that deals frankly with sex.  The first of three Preminger films in the Top 1000.

#651

triplets_of_belleville_ver3Le triplettes de Belleville
(The Triplets of Belleville)

  • Director:  Sylvain Chomet
  • Genre:  Musical  (Animated)
  • Distributor:  Sony Pictures Classics
  • Year:  2003
  • Country:  France  (French)
  • Major Awards:  Foreign (NH), Animated (NH, AA, BAFTA, Annie, CC, NYFC, LAFC, BSFC)
  • N.A. Gross:  $7,007,149
  • WW Gross:  $14,776,760
  • Entry Rank:  #551
  • TSPDT Rank:  #274  (21-C)
  • The Film:  What a bizarre, fun little oddity that managed to earn an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Film and thus has already been fully reviewed.  It’s in French but does it really matter when there’s so little understandable dialogue in the film in the first place?