As a film lover, I often find myself thinking about my favourite films. The list is constantly changing, constantly evolving and constantly annoying me. I thought I’d write a post about it for your casual reading, but bear in mind that the list is probably different to what it was yesterday, and will probably be different tomorrow. Also be aware that this list is not a critical list in any way, but simply an amalgamation of the films I enjoy.
Firstly, there are many films that I would class as my favourites, but aren’t even in my top 10 films. Films like ‘Toy Story’, ‘The Shawshank Redemption’ and ‘The Truman Show’, for example, are all films that I love, and that warrant an emotional connection, whether it’s the childhood love of Toy Story, or the pure happiness of Shawshank’s finale.
A couple of noteworthy entries to this list are my two favourite Tarantino films. In my (extremely controversial) opinion, ‘Pulp Fiction’ is a bit too convoluted and out of order for me to properly enjoy, but I absolutely loved the out of sync action of ‘Reservoir Dogs’. For my money, however, the best Tarantino picture is ‘Django Unchained’, a fantastically big, loud and exciting Hollywood blockbuster that also raises some very interesting themes. Additionally, any list of great films would be nulled without a Christopher Nolan entry, my two favourites being ‘The Dark Knight’ (obviously) and ‘Memento’, although ‘Dunkirk’ was obviously a masterpiece (and be warned, the word masterpiece will be used a lot in this blog).
Climbing closer to the Top 10 finds sci-fi films like ‘Terminator 2’, ‘Arrival’ and ‘Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy’. I think ‘Terminator 2’ is the greatest sequel I’ve ever seen and one that builds so well upon the original. ‘Arrival’ was perhaps my favourite film of 2016, and I thought it was incredible, particularly the sound design which created such a creepy and intense atmosphere. And I know there is some controversy over whether ‘Hitchhiker’s Guide’ is a good film or not, but I personally love it, and think it manages to portray the fun of Douglas Adam’s series while also having a whole atmosphere of its own. Also, who can’t love singing dolphins?!
Entering the Top 10, and in no particular order we find two of Edgar Wrights films, ‘Scott Pilgrim vs The World’ and ‘Baby Driver’. Of his five films, these two are perhaps his most unique, with ‘Scott Pilgrim’ perfectly balancing the ridiculous storyline with genuine heart, while also making it an incredibly exciting film. ‘Baby Driver’ is, if you’ve read my blog post, another masterpiece, and is still (so far) my favourite film of 2017, so it’s no wonder it found its way instantly to my top 10.
Next up, two classic comedies; ‘Airplane’ and ‘Monty Python and The Holy Grail’. These two films are just hilarious, with an astounding number of jokes. ‘Airplane’ was scientifically proven to be the funniest film of all time, with on average three jokes every minute. ‘Holy Grail’ will always be special to me, with its musical adaptation ‘Spamalot’ being my favourite musical, and one I was lucky enough to perform in as Not Dead Fred and Prince Herbert.
Next up are my two favourite spy films, ‘Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation’ and ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’. Both of these are on my list, not because they are perfect, but because they were so much fun to watch. Yes they have issues, but both of them are loud, exciting and boast potentially some of the best action set pieces in recent years. ‘Rogue Nations’ practical plane scene is amazing, but Kingsmans church fight scene is potentially the greatest action sequence ever filmed. The choice of music, Colin Firth’s incredible performance and the brilliant idea to make it seem like one shot make it an incredible sequence in an equally incredible film.
At number four, it’s my favourite David Fincher film. While his films Fight Club and The Social Network are stunning, his best, in my opinion, is ‘Se7en’. An amazing story, stunning performances from Pitt, Freeman and Spacey, and the greatest twist ending to a film ever make it a winner in my books.
In bronze place, it’s ‘Back to The Future’. I mean, cmon, this film is a masterpiece (there it is again). Its special effects haven’t yet managed to look dated, it has such great comedy and action, and is the perfect nostalgia hit for anyone who misses the 50’s. Christopher Lloyd and Michael J. Fox have brilliant chemistry, and the film is just so much fun.
So, my second favourite movie of all time is 2004’s ‘Lemony Snickets A Series of Unfortunate Events’. A surprising choice to many I’m sure, but this is an emotional choice rather than a critical choice. This was my favourite movie growing up, as well as being my favourite series of books. The casting of Jim Carrey is perfect, and the set design is brilliantly quirky. The cinematography is stunning, and perhaps most incredible is Thomas Newman’s Oscar nominated score. That score is my all-time favourite, and listening to ‘The Letter that Never Came’ never fails to bring a tear to my eye.
Okay, so the maths of this list is totally wrong, and part of the reason is that I have two favourite films that I cannot separate. Edgar Wrights ‘Hot Fuzz’ and Sam Mendes’s ‘American Beauty’ are the two greatest films I have ever watched, and my emotional attachment to them is overwhelming. Firstly, American Beauty is a bona fide classic, and one that won basically every major Oscar at the 2000 Academy Awards. Again, Thomas Newman scored the film, and used quirky percussive instruments to cut through the drama. It is a perfect film that balances comedy and tragedy, and Kevin Spacey’s compelling performance makes it utterly fantastic. Hot Fuzz, on the other hand, is loud, hilarious and totally unique. Edgar Wright’s stunning direction and soundscape are complimented by a stellar all-star cast, and it all culminates in an incredible film that I can endlessly re-watch.
So there we are, my favourite films. I am aware that this list is just today’s thought’s and that there are so many absences. Re-reading the post, I can’t help but feel a drinking game is in order, where you drink every time i say “amazing”, “stunning”, “incredible” or “masterpiece”. I really need a thesaurus…
Anyway, I hope this was an interesting blog post, let me know what your favourite films are in the comments and I’ll try and give them a watch (if I haven’t already). See you in the next post!