The Greatest Films Ever Made: The Top Thirty (#1-10)

Welcome once again to my can’t-miss list of the greatest films ever made. To review, the criteria is as rudimentary as I can make it: a) The immediate impact of the film and b) The compulsive need to see the film again and again. Yes, these are films I will think of on my death bed. The top ten films ever made..:

1. Aguirre, Wrath of God (Werner Herzog, Germany, 1972)

Indelible line: “I am the wrath of God. Who else is with me?” (Aguirre)

Lasting impression: The futility of man’s desires

2. No Country for Old Men (Joel & Ethan Coen, US, 2007)

Indelible line: “What’s the most you’ve ever lost on a coin toss?” (Chigurh)

Lasting impression: Silent, relentless, unforgiving pursuit

3. Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki, Japan, 2001)

Indelible line: “If you want to eat me, eat this first.” (Chihiro)

Lasting impression: Train ride with spirits across the flooded plain

4. Cleo from 5 to 7 (Agnes Varda, France, 1962)

Indelible line: “I always think everyone is looking at me, but I’m only looking at myself.” (Cleo)

Lasting impression: Adrift in the city

5. The Deerhunter (Michael Cimino, US, 1980)

Indelible line: “This is this. It ain’t something else. This is this.” (Michael)

Lasting impression: Not knowing what to do, knowing exactly what to do

6. The Wizard of Oz (Victor Fleming, US, 1939)

Indelible line: “I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too.” (Wicked Witch of the West)

Lasting impression: Flying monkeys filling the sky

7. Loveless (Andrey Zvyagintsev, Russia, 2017)

Indelible line: “Twelve and a complete savage. Cries for no reason.” (Zhenya)

Lasting impression: Caution tape blowing over the frozen landscape

8. The Cranes Are Flying (Mikhail Kalatozov, USSR, 1957)

Indelible line: “What the hell kind of mother are you?” (Passing motorist)

Lasting impression: Running from her self, finding an orphan son

9. The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick, US, 1998)

Indelible line: “In this world, a man, himself is nothing.” (Sergeant Welsh)

Lasting impression: The natural world in contrast to the warfare of man

10. Taxi (Jafar Pahani, Iran, 2015)

Indelible line: “They make your living a hell. Just let it go.” (Nasrin Sotoudeh)

Lasting impression: Who knew that defiance could have such a friendly face?

And, thinking you might want just a little bit more, here are the ten films that just missed the cut (in chronological order):

Sherlock Jr. (Buster Keaton, US, 1926)

Man with a Movie Camera (Dziga Vertov, USSR, 1927)

Tokyo Story (Yasujirō Ozu, Japan, 1953)

Raging Bull (Martin Scorsese, US, 1980)

Planes, Trains and Automobiles (John Hughes, US, 1987)

Superbad (Greg Mottola, US, 2007)

Gommorah (Matteo Garonne, Italy 2008)

The Florida Project (Sean Baker, US, 2017)

Shoplifters (Hirokai Kore-eda, Japan, 2018)

Capernaum (Nadine Labaki, Lebanon, 2018)

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