Monday, May 23, 2005

I've got a little list...

Everybody loves a list.

Now Time Magazine has compiled its list of the 100 greatest films of all time.

Usually these lists make great cannon fodder for what they do not include, because everyone always has a favorite film or three they feel is neglected by the pundits. Time's list, though, leaves me baffled by some of the choices that actually made their cut:
  • Drunken Master II? Hey, I'm all for martial arts films getting some love, but if you had to pick one, you'd choose this instead of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, or Hero, or even Enter the Dragon?

  • The Purple Rose of Cairo? That's not even Woody Allen's best film (Manhattan is, though one could make a credible argument for either Annie Hall or Hannah and Her Sisters). In fact, clever premise aside, it's not even a particularly good Woody Allen film.

  • Finding Nemo? Please. It's not even Pixar's best film (that honor goes to Toy Story 2), though it is a pretty good Pixar film. But if the purpose is to represent animation (the only other such film on the list is Pinocchio), Miyazaki's Princess Mononoke or Spirited Away would make stronger choices.

  • David Cronenberg's grotesque, nausea-inducing remake of The Fly? Get serious.

  • Star Wars? Yes, I know it's produced five sequels/prequels — only one of which (The Empire Strikes Back) works even somewhat, but it's still badly written, dreadfully acted, derivative claptrap. You shouldn't give extra credit just for spawning a franchise, or else Francis the Talking Mule should be on the list.

  • Kubrick's Barry Lyndon? Did someone actually stay awake long enough to find out whether that was any good? It's the cinematic equivalent of reading Moby Dick.
At any rate, any "best films" list that doesn't include The Princess Bride and Picnic at Hanging Rock is soulless anyway.

(This article is cross-posted to my film/television blog at DVD Verdict.)

2 insisted on sticking two cents in:

Anonymous Tom Galloway offered these pearls of wisdom...

Well, it does depend on how one defines "greatest". I'm inclined to put Star Wars on pretty much any such list other than one defined by "Most fantastic acting and multi-layered witty dialogue". Why? Because it does fall under "greatest" in terms of box office, being a significant factor in changing the overall direction of commercial movies, cultural impact, and, despite dialogue clunkiness and the like just being a very fun movie that people wanted to watch repeatedly.

Then again, I liked Purple Rose of Cairo although I'd also not rank it as anywhere in Allen's top five films, let alone 100 greatest all time.

1:57 PM  
Blogger Janet offered these pearls of wisdom...

I never understand these lists. Haven't they already done them a million times over? I mean it's not like they're doing them over for the sake of adding new movies, cause they're not. In fact, movies I've seen are never on there, much less ones I've actually liked.

Bah humbug.:(

6:51 PM  

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