Monday, August 17, 2009

Tarantino's Top 20 Movies



Battle Royale, Anything Else, Audition, The Blade, Boogie Nights, Dazed & Confused, Dogville, Fight Club, Friday, The Host, The Insider, Joint Security Area, Lost In Translation, The Matrix, Memories of Murder, Police Story 3, Shaun of the Dead, Speed, Team America, and Unbreakable

My Top 20 Since 1992

Battle Royale
For those who still haven't seen Kinji Fukasaku's violent masterpiece--you really ought to. You're lucky, now it's on Netflix.  When I first wanted to see it, I had to head into Chinatown and seek out a Region 9 disc.  It's the Clockwork Orange of our generation.  You owe it to yourself to watch this.  Side note: skip the sequel.   

The Boondock Saints

Clueless
Alicia Silverstone was my childhood love.  Somehow, a very young Gringocito saw a couple Aerosmith music videos and his life was changed forever.  Then Clueless came out and any chance for my homosexuality was eradicated.   The hair, the clothes, the slang--the early 90s still hold a special place in my heart.  Anyone remember that "He-he-helloooo" line from Party Girl?  The point is that I do.  A recent home screening of Clueless proved that even though Silverstone's career didn't hold much staying power, her best film still does.  

Dazed and Confused

The Descent
I had no idea what The Descent was about when I stepped into the theater.  Didn't know I was walking into the the best horror film of the past decade.  From the claustrophobic sets to the frightening plot twists, there just aren't many movies that can touch its overall horror.  

El Crimen Del Padre Amaro
Just after high school, I worked at a one-screen art house theater in a mostly Latino part of town.  After the Catholic Church banned this film we had sold-out shows every night.  For those who've seen it, you know that there's an especially offensive scene about an hour in. Well, every night, about sixty minutes after the lighted dimmed, an angry mob would storm out of the theater--looking for whoever was responsible for the offensive content they had just been subjected to.  Apparently, that was me.  After a couple nights of being yelled at by angry Catholics, I decided that I'd actually watch the movie.  When I did, I was immediately blown away.  The narrative is entrancing, the acting is phenomenal, and the controversy is in full-effect.  It's definitely earned a spot in my Top 20 list.

The Fugitive

Hackers
I know...I know...I know.  There's just something about Hackers that won't let me go.  The music, the outdated technology, the ultra-cool underground nerd society.  Would you believe that this movie pushed Barton Fink off the list?  I debated about whether or not it deserved to be on the Top 20 but, if I'm being honest, it does, and not at the bottom either.

He Got Game

High Fidelity
Any He Shot Cyrus reader knows how much I adore High Fidelity.  I want to be Rob but I'm so afraid that I'll become Dick that I live my life as Barry.  Something like that.  It's my #2 film of all-time (right after The Warriors) mostly because it accurately describes my post-high school life.

Jurassic Park

Kill Bill Vol. 1

Matinee
I recently attended a screening of Matinee and got to meet Joe Dante, the man to thank for  Gremlins, Explorers, and The Howling.  We both agreed that Matinee hasn't received a fair shake since it's release.  This is a special film which honors a different age of filmgoing set against a tense time in American history.      

Old Boy

Reservoir Dogs
It's fitting that while filling out my own Top 20 list that two of QT's films have found slots on the order. Reservoir Dogs appeals to me for all the same reasons it appeals to everyone else.  The cast, the performances, the story (just as contained as I desire), the violence, and the music.  He's the only director to show up twice and as happy as that makes me, the fact that the Coen Bros. leaves me wishing for a 21st choice. 

The Sandlot


Superbad
If High Fidelity represents my post-high school life, then Superbad represents the four years before.  There won't ever be a character on-screen that more accurately portrays who I was during my teens than Seth (Jonah Hill).  We told the same jokes, wore the same awful clothes, and sported the same hairdo.  This kid was me, I was this kid.  It's a very cool experience to connect with a character like that.

The Truman Show


Unfaithful

Waiting for Guffman
Choosing my favorite Christopher Guest film proved to be much more difficult than I imagined. Eventually, Parker Posey giving praise to the DQ pushed Guffman to the top.


What are your Top 20 Films since 1992?

11 comments:

The Mad Hatter said...

In ascending order...

ALMOST FAMOUS
SAVING PRIVATE RYAN
TRAFFIC
SE7EN
THE DARK KNIGHT
MYSTIC RIVER
HEAT
MILLION DOLLAR BABY
HIGH FIDELITY
THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION
L.A. CONFIDENTIAL
THE INSIDER
GARDEN STATE
ONCE
FIGHT CLUB
PULP FICTION
MEMENTO
THE USUAL SUSPECTS
PAN'S LABRYNTH
WALL-E

Joseph B. said...

I loved watching this clip/ I'm not a big Tarantino fan, but the guy's profound geekiness for movies is invigorating.

My top 20 (really in order until # 10or so)

1. Casino
2. Heat (damn '95 was a great year)
3. The Thin Red Line
4. Magnolia
5. The Assassination of Jesse James By the Coward Robert Ford
6. Boogie NIghts
7. Laws of Gravity
8. Lovers of the Arctic Circle
9. Almost Famous
10. Swingers
11. 25th Hour
12. Mystic River
13. Oldboy
14. Seven
15. The New World
16. Kundun
17. Rachel Getting Married
18. The Departed
19. Wonderland
20. Fargo

PIPER said...

The Limey
High Fidelity
The Incredibles
Out Of Sight
Army Of Darkness
Election
Punch Drunk Love
The Royal Tenenbaums
There's Something About Mary
Oldboy
Three Kings
Grosse Point Blank
Dazed And Confused
The Insider

That's all I got right now

Ed Howard said...

I couldn't cut it anymore than 25, so here's the 25 best films made since 1992, if you ask me (which I guess you did).

25TH HOUR (Spike Lee)
ALONE. LIFE WASTES ANDY HARDY (Martin Arnold)
BEAU TRAVAIL (Claire Denis)
BLACK SUN (Gary Tarn)
BLUE (Jarman)
CACHE (Haneke)
CE JOUR-LA (Raoul Ruiz)
CELEBRITY (Woody Allen)
COLLATERAL (Mann)
CRASH (Cronenberg)
DEAD MAN (Jarmusch)
EYES WIDE SHUT (Kubrick)
GERRY (Van Sant)
JACKIE BROWN (Tarantino)
LESSONS OF DARKNESS (Herzog)
LOST HIGHWAY (Lynch)
MULHOLLAND DR. (Lynch)
NAKED (Mike Leigh)
NOTRE MUSIQUE (Godard)
SAFE (Haynes)
SEX AND LUCIA (Julio Medem)
SONGS FROM THE SECOND FLOOR (Roy Andersson)
THE STORY OF MARIE & JULIEN (Rivette)
UNDERGROUND (Emir Kusturica)

I like that Tarantino lists ANYTHING ELSE, too; that movie doesn't get nearly enough love.

Ed Howard said...

Apparently one got lost when I was shuffling them around. Rohmer's A WINTER'S TALE should have been in there too.

PeterB said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=atiLnxSKmec

funny pulp fiction parody

have you seen it?

Heather said...

Good Will Hunting
High Fidelity
Almost Famous
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
American Beauty
A League of their Own
Forrest Gump
25th Hour
Amelie
The Truman Show
The Shawshank Redemption
Million Dollar Baby
Lost in Translation
Office Space
Reality Bites
Best in Show
Pulp Fiction
American History X
The Royal Tenenbaums
Adaptation

Lunatone said...

Hah, Miguel and I had a conversation not long ago, (you know.. THAT night) about how he IS Rob Gordon. Seriously. Be Barry.

Kaleen.

elgringo said...

Hatter - Did you know that I'm the only person in the whole, entire world not to like Fight Club. The blame falls completely on Helena Bonham Carter, I cannot stand her in that movie.

Good looking out on Once. We shouldn't allow people to forget about that movie.

Joseph B. - I never saw Wonderland. Is it really that good?

Piper - A lot of people love The Insider, I've never seen it but it's being added to my queue as I type.

Ed Howard - I added every movie on your list that I hadn't seen to my Netflix queue...except for ALONE. LIFE WASTES ANDY HARDY. What is this movie?

Also, I watched Lessons of Darkness on your recommendation. I loved it. Thank you.

Peter B - That was way funny.

Heather - Whitney and I LOVE that A League of Their Own is on your list.

Kaleen - I'm proud to be Barry!

Ed Howard said...

El Gringo: Awesome. I hope you enjoy my picks.

Alone. Life Wastes Andy Hardy is a bizarre, hilarious experimental short in which Martin Arnold uses clips from a few old Judy Garland/Andy Rooney musical comedies to tell a new story about incestuous desire and young love. It sounds academic, like a deconstruction of blah blah blah, I know, but it's really one of the funniest things I've ever seen. I've written about it before here, and there seem to be some clips online here, since it's not readily available on a US DVD. It's only been released on a collection of Arnold's short films put together by the Austrian Index label.

Jonny said...

I couldn't agree with you more about The Descent. Holy shit, what an amazing horror film. I've had the "The Descent and everything else" mentality regarding modern horror ever since.