Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Question: What are the best movies ever made?

Good lord!

Have we lost all sense of decorum? You want me to make a definitive best movies ever list? I don't come to your job and tell you to put a way bigger ball-gag in your mouth than you're accustomed to.

There's no way I'm going to get into another conversation about the difference between 'good' and 'like'. It's a constant struggle to define it for myself and then explain those definitions to others. Suffice it to say, I differentiate, and a 'best' movies list makes me think of good more than like. In other words, taking my personal biases aside - as best I can - what are the best movies ever made?

The Godfather and The Godfather: Part 2

If one of these was clearly the better film, I would likely call it the best film ever made. Only the split between fans keeps it from being a definitive victory. If you could take the two movies together, as one whole story, it wins horse's head down.


My personal pick for the greatest film of all time if I allow some bias to seep in. Not only is it a fantastic film, it affected the world in a tangible way. To this day, people fear sharks far more than is necessary, and I'm afraid of the water.

Casablanca and/or Citizen Kane

I don't love either of these movies, but other people sure do.

The Shawshank Redemption

A more modern classic, this one creeps into a lot of top tens, as well as holding the number one all-time spot on IMDB.

Schindler's List

The subject matter alone makes it hard for me to celebrate it in the way I'd celebrate, say, Big Trouble in Little China, but I guess it's great.

Rear Window

Okay, okay, now I'm blurring the lines. A Hitchcock movie must be included. I think this is my favorite, but it's splitting hairs between this, Vertigo and Psycho. (Never been a big fan of North by Northwest.)

2001: A Space Odyssey

The de facto Kubrick film isn't even close to my favorite, but it seems to get a lot of respect from best of collections.

Now that I've covered that, here's a quick look at some of my personal best movie picks:

A Clockwork Orange
American Beauty
Grosse Pointe Blank
In Bruges
Black Swan
The Exorcist
Dr. Strangelove
Reservoir Dogs
The Orphanage
Shaun of the Dead
The Dark Knight
The Ring
Iron Man
L.A. Confidential
American History X
Big Trouble in Little China
Inside (A L'Interieur)
Fight Club
The Usual Suspects

Short Answer: Maybe one day I'll compile a definitive list of my favorite films of all-time, but it feels like a monumental undertaking. This is a good first step, I suppose.

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