‘What’s your top ten films of all time?’ – The one single question that can both excite and instil pure anxiety into any movie buff.
This question is so subjective. It’s personal to everyone, depending on if you’re collating your films from emotion, nostalgia, cinematography, characters, a great storyline or all the above. It’s such a tricky question to answer… I mean, how are we really meant to remember and condense all our favourite films?
A lot of the time this question is asked off the cuff and for any true film fan, this question needs time and research. There is of course the recurring classics that often get thrown into the mix. The likes of ‘Reservoir Dogs, Taxi, The Usual Suspects, Goodfellas, The Shawshank Redemption and The Shining. As well as some newcomers like Avengers: Endgame, Inception and The Social Network.
But, before you finalise your top ten, below are a few of our favourite films that we think deserve another watch before you finalise your Top Ten.
We’re not going for the obvious blockbusters. These are just suggestions of films that may have passed you by. Plus some newer films that you maybe haven’t watched yet or obscure films that may have been forgotten.
1. True Romance (1993)
Often overlooked due to its title and Quentin Tarantino’s other blockbusters, True Romance is far from what the title suggests… a Rom-com. It really does have it all action, drama, romance, a fantastic storyline, and it’s jam-packed full of amazing actors. Christian Slater and Patricia Arquette head up this incredible line-up. One which also includes Dennis Hopper, Garry Oldman and Christopher Walken. As well as actors such as Samuel L Jackson, Val Kilmer and Brad Pitt dropping in for a few lines too!
The name dropping for this film doesn’t even stop at the cast either, even behind the scenes there are some heavy hitters too. The screenplay was written by Roger Avary and Tarantino. It was also directed by Emmy award winner Tony Scott. If that wasn’t good enough for you even the soundtrack was scored by the legend himself Hans Zimmer.
The ending to ‘True Romance’ is one of the most satisfying endings of all time, with the meeting of 60 cops, 40 agents and 30 mobsters, all in one hotel. So, if you have found yourself skimming past this film thinking it’s just another Rom-com, well skim back and give it a watch! You might even find yourself making space for it on your list.
2. Stand by me (1986)
Based on a short story by Stephen King called ‘The Body’, ‘Stand by me’ became an instant classic as soon as it hit the box office. It even received an Oscar nomination for its screenplay. If you’re into films with a strong storyline, full of nostalgia and emotion this film could be a contender for your top ten.
‘Stand By Me’ is set in 1959, and even if you weren’t alive in the late 50’s the setting, costuming, and soundtrack will transport you there in an instant. You follow four boys, Gordie (Wil Wheaton), Chris (River Phoenix), Teddy (Corey Feldman) and Vern (Jerry O’Connell) on a coming-of-age story. One which cements the importance of young friendships.
Director Rob Reiner, who has a string of classic movies under his belt including ‘The Princes Bride’, ‘When Harry Met Sally’ and ‘A Few Good Men’, wanted to make sure this film resonated with all audiences. That it stood the test of time, making it his love story to friendship and youth.
3. Moonlight (2016)
One of the more recent films on this list is Moonlight. A character study is broken down into three chapters and gives a perspective of three different stages of growth and age for our main character. Chiron aka Little played by Alex R. Hibbert, Ashton Sanders and Trevante Nemour Rhodes.
This film tackles some difficult subjects and takes an eye-opening look into growing up in a crime-ridden area. Showing the struggles that 9-year-old, teenage and adult Chiron must go through whilst also trying to figure out who he is and what he wants from life.
For beautiful cinematography and realism, this film is up there with some of the best. Moonlight achieved 292 nominations, winning 222 of them, including three Oscars for Best Motion Picture of the Year, Best adapted screenplay and Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role – Mahershala Ali.
4. Deadman’s shoes (2004)
Deadman’s Shoes is a suspense thriller, with a serious revenge plot. British film icon Shane Meadows directed and co-wrote this film alongside Paul Fraser. And the main protagonist/antagonist of the film Paddy Considine.
Because there wasn’t a huge Hollywood budget attached to ‘Dead Man’s Shoes’, none of the shots are enhanced or made flowery in any way. This helps to make this film believable and very realistic. The edginess of the convincing storyline and incredible acting really drags you into the plot. And although it’s quite violent in places there are some injections of comedy and raw emotion too.
The twisting turning narrative is like no other and really keeps you guessing as any good thriller should. Due to the intensity of the storyline, you never know if the main character Richard (Considine) is the film good or bad guy.
5. WALL-E (2008)
There are a few Disney films that are worthy of Top Ten status. Especially based on emotion and nostalgia But, we believe that one of Disney Pixar’s newer films should be considered too.
‘WALL-E’ is like no other Disney or Pixar film. It’s not based on a princess, full of catchy songs or includes the inner thoughts of a cute furry animal. No, instead it’s an almost wordless, romantic, science fiction story about a post-apocalyptic robot WALL-E and his robot love interest Eva.
It takes 22 minutes to get the first bit of dialogue between the 2 robots and 39 minutes to any human-to-human chat. This is almost unheard of for any move let unknown a Disney film, but it’s not missed as the animation, music and mannerisms of the lovable robot is what makes this film work. It looks like the film industry agrees with ‘WALL-E’ winning 93 awards worldwide.
6. Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
One of the most visually appealing films must be Guillermo Del Toro’s, Spanish film – ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’. Even though this film can sometimes be overlooked as it’s subtitled, the pure imagination and beauty of it are beyond the dialogue. As a visual film, it’s very easy to get lost in the world of ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ and forget altogether that it’s subtitled.
Due to its breath-taking cinematography at award season ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ took home 109 awards including three Oscars for Best Achievement in Cinematography, Best Achievement in Art Direction and Best Achievement in Makeup. As well as three BAFTA awards for Best Film not in the English Language, Best Costume Design and Best Makeup and Hair.
This film will always stand the test of time and be relatable even if it is set in 1944. During the Francoist period just after the Spanish Civil War. Because in fact if you delve deep enough, this film is all about creating your own world of beauty, fantasy, and intrigue within the mists of adversity.
7. Almost Famous (2000)
This Semi-autobiographical film by Director, producer, screenwriter, actor, and journalist Cameron Crowe, is not only beautifully shot, but is also incredibly cast.
The story follows teenager William Miller (Patrick Fugit) as he starts writing for Rolling Stones magazine. He ends up on tour with the band of the moment – Stillwater. Whilst on tour he learns a lot more about the musician lifestyle than just the music, with the help of the band and the “Band-Aids” including the illustrious Penny Lane (Kate Hudson).
Although the names in the film are different and some of the events didn’t happen in the order they appear in or to the people as depicted in the film. Crowe did witness a lot of what happened whilst he was working for the magazine as a 15-year-old journalist in the 70’s.
As you can imagine for a film based around music ‘Almost Famous’ also has an incredible soundtrack including music from the likes of The Who, Led Zeppelin and Lynyrd Skynyrd.
8. Kick-Ass (2010)
Within a lot of Top Ten lists, you will probably see a few superhero movies pop up, such as The Avengers, one of the Iron man movies or even a Superman film. But, for a completely different view of a superhero, we wanted to put Kick-Ass in the mix too. Based on a Marvel published comic by Mark Millar this violent, bloody and foul-mouthed version of a superhero movie is one of the most surprising and shocking of all. Mainly due to Chloe Moretz’s fruitful portrayal of ‘Hit-Girl.’
Hit-Girl, a supporting role to Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s Kick-Ass was the main spark of controversy, even triggering conflict from the beginning of production. ‘Kick Ass’ had been presented to a few production studios and was turned down several times, all for the same reason, the studios would only make the film if Hit-Girl was dropped or made older. Yet, due to director Matthew Vaughn digging his feet in, they kept looking for the right studio. Finally, the film was accepted by Lionsgate Studios with Hit-Girl cast by 12-year-old Moretz.
Due to the film sticking closely to the comic along with the realistic and plausible storyline, we believe this is one of the best real-life superhero narratives and should be closely looked at by any film fan.
9. Lion (2016)
Based on a true story and adapted from the book ‘A Long Way Home’ by Saroo Brierley, about his life. Lion is one of the most interesting stories, about a lost Indian boy who ended up being adopted in Australia and later going on to find his birth mother. Young Saroo was wonderfully portrayed by eight-year-old Sunny Pawar and later in the film by Dev Patel.
This film is not only powerful due to the story being told but because it raises real issues and statistics to the forefront around the number of children and young people that go missing every year in India.
As far a true story goes, they don’t get much real than this one and due to the budget allocated to this film, director Gareth Davis was able to tell this story using the most amazing cinematography.
10. 10 Things I hate about you
Alright, so hear us out on this one! Granted most top ten films are gritty and full of angst or have incredible camerawork. But sometimes, something has to be said about a film that does exactly what it should and stands out within a sea of similar movies.
Throughout the decades there have always been teen movies but in particular, from the mid-’90s until the mid 00’s the film industry was saturated with ‘high school’ movies of all genres. From horror, gritty coming of age stories to musicals and romcoms. But one that covered all the bases, bar horror, was ’10 Things I Hate About You’. This film stood head and shoulders above the rest and really cemented itself as one of the best teen movies of the ’90s, if not of all time.
Writers Karen McCullah and Kirsten Smith can’t take all the credit for this screenplay as the story was adapted from William Shakespeare’s ‘Taming of the Shrew.’ But, the host of upcoming actors including Heath Ledger, Julia Stiles, Joseph Gorden-Levitt, Larisa Oleynik and Gabrielle Union really took the film to Iconic status.
So there we have it, a few of the films that we love and think could be good contenders for any ‘Top Ten Favorite Films of all Time’ lists. Would have you done it differently? Let us know in the comments below what you think of our films and which films you think people should consider and you never know we may make another list on this soon.
Check out eight movies where the bad guy wins HERE.
9 Bands You Forgot Played Themselves In Movies
There are more bands than you think that played themselves on the big screen. Here are nine bands you might’ve forgotten appeared in movies.
1. Alice Cooper – Wayne’s World (1992)
Being a teenager in the nineties was great for many reasons. Two of those being the release of the Wayne’s World movies. The genius that is Mike Myers created one of the best music-based films of all time. Plus, he convinced one of the greatest rock musicians of all time to be in it. If you’re not a geek like me, you may have forgotten that Alice Cooper was featured in the film. It had the iconic scene of Wayne and Garth meeting, Alice, backstage on bent knees. We’re not worthy, indeed. Alice himself pulls off the diva Rockstar brilliantly, even though he’s a genuine, down-to-earth guy who plays a lot of golf.
2. Primus – Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (1991)
Let’s try and erase the recent Bill & Ted movie from our memory and head back to 1991 for their bogus journey. They come from the future to kill the non-robot versions of themselves and ruin their performance at a Battle of the Bands competition. What’s cool is the band who are playing before them. Californian alt-metal kings Primus. Although the clip is only short, they play themselves and sound as you would expect. Epic.
3. Fall Out Boy – Sex Drive (2008)
You’d be forgiven for forgetting about this one. The teen sex comedy from 2008 is forgettable and won’t really appeal to anyone apart from its teen target audience. If you can sit through all the cringe-inducing moments, you will spot pop-rockers Fall Out Boy. They are performing in a barn in front of some drunk Amish teenagers. There’s a reason for that, but I won’t bore you with it here. What is good, is the soundtrack of the film. As well as Fall Out Boy, it features Airbourne, AC/DC and weirdly, Kenny Loggins.
4. Twisted Sister – Pee Wee’s Big Adventure (1985)
Paul Reuben’s character Pee Wee Herman made his big-screen outing in 1985. The children’s show star had a scene where he is being chased through a studio parking lot. Unbeknown to him, glam rockers Twisted Sister are recording a music video on a car. Lead singer Dee Snider is always up for a laugh, so it’s no surprise they’re featured. The clip is brilliant. Pee Wee’s prop-laden bike is just about to crash into Twisted Sister and the look on Dee’s face is genius. Go check out the clip.
5. David Bowie – Zoolander (2001)
Who can forget the brilliant Zoolander? Starring Ben Stiller as the dippy model, it’s one of the funniest comedies ever made. One of the best scenes of the film is the walk-off. This involved Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson’s characters doing a catwalk-off. Of sorts. Can you remember who refereed it? The legend himself, David Bowie. It’s not the first time Bowie was in a movie – remember Labyrinth? But this time, he plays himself. And does it with all the cool swagger you would expect.
6. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones – Clueless (1995)
I can’t say that I was a massive fan of this teen comedy at the time. The plot revolves around Alicia Silverstone’s character giving her friend a makeover. The premise doesn’t sound like it lends itself to a cool band cameo. You’d be wrong, though. There’s a scene where the lead characters go watch a gig. The band that are playing are The Mighty Mighty Bosstones. The Boston ska-punk legends are only on stage for a moment, but it’s a slick clip. It certainly brings the film up a level on the cool stakes.
7. Daft Punk – Tron: Legacy (2010)
This sequel to the original sci-fi classic is a cracking movie. The visuals and effects are stunning, as is the atmosphere of the film. The music to the film is also rather special. A futuristic and dystopian movie could only have one act doing the score, and that’s Daft Punk. It works a treat. The music is intertwined into the movie and becomes a part of it. The delicious electronica is the perfect complement to the visuals. The French electronic masters also have a cameo at the end of the movie. They’re spinning the decks in a blink-and-you-miss-it scene.
8. Aerosmith – Wayne’s World (1993)
We’ve already had an appearance from the first film further up our list, and the second doesn’t disappoint either. The plot revolves around Wayne and Garth putting on their own music festival. Book them and they will come, is the advice given. And they certainly did. The headline band for the festival were none other than Aerosmith themselves. They do a sterling effort on stage as performers. And Steven Tyler also shows that he can handle his own on the acting front too.
9. Reel Big Fish – BASEketball (1998)
Trey Parker and Matt Stone star in this bizarre and hilarious sports comedy. Written by the king of spoof David Zucker, it’s become a cult classic. The soundtrack heavily features ska-punkers Reel Big Fish. They do a brilliant rendition of A-HA’s Take on Me, which they also perform in the movie. The band are the entertainment at the stadium where Parker and Stone are competing. You can tell by the footage that the band are clearly enjoying themselves. They add a touch more fun to an already hugely funny film.
That’s our list of nine bands who played themselves in movies. Did we miss any of your favourites? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out our list of actors in bands HERE.
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