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Plain Old Tele

Tele's List of 100 Lesser-Known or Under-Appreciated Films Everyone Should See (THE LIST IS COMPLETE! p26)

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Okay, inspired in part by Baumer's "Most Important" list, and also because a few of these were just running around in my head, this is gonna be a list of 100 movies that I really enjoyed (for any number of reasons) and think they're worth seeing by anyone and everyone. It's gonna be a slightly weird list: there are some movies that're very famous (but I'm guessing most members here haven't seen), there are some cult movies; there's a few weird art movies, there's a few dumb-ass Hollywood comedies. You get the idea. It's going to be narrative feature films only, no documentaries (although there's at least one exception that I guess would qualify only as an art piece). :ph34r:

 

A few caveats: I haven't seen nearly as many foreign films as I should've, so for those who are familiar with a particular country's output, I'm sure there are plenty of movies you could suggest that aren't on my list. In fact, any movie's absence comes down to a couple basic things: either I haven't seen it, or maybe I didn't like it enough. :ph34r: There are bound to be a handful of movies on the list where you say, "Oh c'mon, I've seen that -- it's pretty well-known" -- if you're a cinephile who's seen a ton of classic movies, that'll certainly be the case... same if you happen to like the same genres I do.

 

I'm still organizing the exact order, but I'm planning on starting the actual countdown either tonight or tomorrow.

 

THE LIST:

 

100. A Bridge Too Far

99. The Edge

98. Tequila Sunrise

97. The Bounty

96. Scanners

95. Dead Again

94. The Long Goodbye

93. After Hours

92. Tucker: The Man and His Dream

91. 9

90. Down and Out in Beverly Hills

89. The Killer

88. To Live and Die in L.A.

87. My Man Godfrey

86. Victory

85. No Way Out

84. Eight Men Out

83. Rob Roy

82. North Face

81. The Best of Times

80. Warlock

79. The Man From Snowy River

78. Summer School

77. Papillon

76. Hard Boiled

75. Crossroads

74. Alexander Nevsky

73. Ruthless People

72. The Grey Fox

71. Top Secret!

70. Quick Change

69. Forbidden Planet

68. Stand and Deliver

67. The Secret of Roan Inish

66. The Mouse That Roared

65. The Brood

64. Brother Sun, Sister Moon

63. Point Blank

62. A Man Escaped

61. Breaking Away

60. Big Wednesday

59. The In-Laws

58. Von Ryan's Express

57. High and Low

56. The Wizard of Speed and Time

55. Dillinger

54. The Tin Drum

53. The Hidden

52. Map of the Human Heart

51. Mumford

50. Red Rock West

49. Mountains of the Moon

48. Thief

47. The Last Detail

46. Runaway Train

45. The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming!

44. The Ruling Class

43. Paris, Texas

42. The Wages of Fear

41. Animal Crackers

40. Topper

39. Re-Animator

38. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead

37. The Enemy Below

36. The Mirror

35. Sorcerer

34. The Man Who Would Be King

33. Wind

32. The Gods Must Be Crazy

31. Ivan's Childhood

30. Man Bites Dog

29. Phar Lap

28. Return to Oz

27. Once Upon a Time in China

26. Letter Never Sent

25. Used Cars

24. How to Get Ahead in Advertising

23. Repo Man

22. The Tall Guy

21. The Wind and the Lion

20. Schizopolis

19. Black Narcissus

18. Koyaanisqatsi

17. Until the End of the World

16. Lady Snowblood

15. Dark Star

14. The Thief of Bagdad (1924 & 1940 versions)

13. The Vanishing

12. The Return

11. The Ballad of Cable Hogue

10. Seconds

9. The Brother From Another Planet

8. Gerry

7. The Steel Helmet

6. Eyes Without a Face

5. Never Cry Wolf

4. Soldier of Orange

3. Beat the Devil

2. The Battle of Algiers

1. The Apu Trilogy

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I hope you have the 1978 Lord of the Rings because of the way the nazguls and orcs were illustrated. I've seen it twice as a kid, and still remember it quite vividly. I am under the assumption that it was very advanced at the time, would like to hear professional opinion.

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2 hours ago, MrPink said:

Following, Insomnia, and the Quay Brothers are lesser known, right?

 

GTFO :lol: 

(Maybe the original INSOMNIA) :ph34r: 

 

9 minutes ago, ttr said:

I hope you have the 1978 Lord of the Rings because of the way the nazguls and orcs were illustrated. I've seen it twice as a kid, and still remember it quite vividly. I am under the assumption that it was very advanced at the time, would like to hear professional opinion.

 

Well, it has to be movies I like. :P (Yes, Bakshi embraced rotoscoping, which wasn't commonly done in animation at the time... but no movie will make the list on technical aspects alone).

 

7 minutes ago, The Pandaren said:

I hope Warcraft is on this list :ph34r:

 

There are no 2016 movies on the list.

There are no 2015 movies on the list.

 

In fact, there are only four movies from 2000 onwards.

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Here we go...

 

100. A Bridge Too Far (1977)

a-bridge-too-far-movie-poster-1977-10202

 

written by: William Goldman (from a book by Cornelius Ryan)

directed by: Richard Attenborough

starring: Sean Connery, Gene Hackman, Anthony Hopkins, Robert Redford, Ryan O’Neal, Michael Caine, James Caan… and many more

 

 

Synopsis:

Operation Market Garden, September 1944: The Allies attempt to capture several strategically important bridges in the Netherlands in the hope of breaking the German lines. However, mismanagement and poor planning result in its failure.

 

This is one of the famous battles of WWII — an incredibly daring and complicated mission that could’ve brought a quicker end to the war if it had succeeded. And Attenborough’s movie uses a classic blueprint: cast as many big-name stars as you can, spend a small fortune shooting as much of it real-for-real as you can, and the the result is a solid, strong, and entertaining movie that nonetheless falls short of greatness. But it’s still a damn good time, and should bring extra satisfaction to WWII buffs, since it follows history relatively closely and was the last movie (I think) able to use many of the historically accurate tanks and planes instead of mockups or replacements.

 

Another fun thing is to see how many stars you can identify: this is one of those movies where almost every significant speaking role (and even some of the not-to-significant ones) is played by a star or reasonably famous actor (for the time).

 

This is basically the sort of movie Nolan’s striving for with DUNKIRK — we’ll see if he can pull it off.

 

 

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99. The Edge (1997)

 

the-edge-movie-poster-1997-1020384285_la

written by: David Mamet

directed by: Lee Tamahori

starring: Anthony Hopkins, Alec Baldwin

 

Synopsis: 

An intellectual billionaire and two lesser men struggle to band together and survive after getting stranded in the Alaskan wilderness with a blood-thirsty Kodiak Bear hunting them down.

 

This is right in Mamet’s wheelhouse, and he doesn’t disappoint: macho men acting macho while doing macho things. (Even the intellectually-focused Hopkins has plenty of brawn here). Three men go down in a plane crash, and the ensuing struggle against Nature is complimented by the struggle among themselves — among other things, Hopkins thinks Baldwin wants to kill him and steal his wife. Harold Perrineau is the other man with them and Elle Macpherson is Hopkins' wife, although both are distinctly secondary to the scenery chewing that Hopkins and Baldwin enthusiastically provide.

 

@James, you might like this one! :P 

 

 

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98. Tequila Sunrise (1988)

tequila-sunrise-94461.jpg

 

written and directed by: Robert Towne

starring: Mel Gibson, Kurt Russell, and Michelle Pfeiffer

 

Synopsis: 

Mel Gibson is a drug dealer who wants to go straight, but his old and best friend Kurt Russell is now a cop who is assigned to investigate and bring him to justice. Pfeiffer is the woman caught between them.

 

The legendary screenwriter Robert Towne (Chinatown, Shampoo, The Firm, Mission: Impossible) steps behind the camera for this movie — one of only four films he’s directed. The story itself is basically classic noir set in (then) contemporary times. Given the star power involved, it didn’t do particularly well at the box-office, but it’s a nicely-made thriller with three of the hottest actors ever all on screen. It’s amazing to see how young they all were.

 

If you don’t care much for old black-and-white noirs, you might give this one a shot.

 

 

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97. The Bounty (1984)

bounty.jpg

written by: Robert Bolt (from the book by Richard Hough)

directed by: Roger Donaldson

starring: Mel Gibson, Anthony Hopkins

 

Synopsis: 

The classic story of “Mutiny on the Bounty”, only told from a more historically accurate perspective: Captain Bligh and Fletcher Christian were friends, and full credit is given to Bligh’s amazing nautical feat of sailing his lifeboat back to civilization after the mutiny.

 

Another legendary screenwriter (Robert Bolt) and another Hopkins movie! :lol: Maybe this should be called the Anthony Hopkins list. In any case, he’s fantastic, as always, and matched well by Gibson. A few up-and-coming young British actors appear in minor roles. You might have heard of them: Liam Neeson and Daniel Day-Lewis. (And Theoden himself, Bernard Hill, also has a significant supporting part). Some of the fun of watching these movies from twenty or thirty years ago is often there are bit parts played by people who become famous later, and it’s always fun to see them before they broke into the big time.

 

Aside from the strong script and acting, this movie has beautiful cinematography and an amazing, brooding score by Vangelis, the Greek composer who became famous in the movie world for CHARIOTS OF FIRE and BLADE RUNNER.

 

Another old-fashioned epic, in the best sense of the world.

 

 

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96. Scanners (1981)

scanners-movie-poster-1981-1020190744.jp

written and directed by: David Cronenberg

starring: Stephen Lack, Michael Ironside, Patrick McGoohan

 

 

Synopsis: 

A man discovers he has tremendous psychic powers and telekinetic abilities, but they’re driving him insane. He seeks help from a scientist… only to discover he’s not the only Scanner out there.

 

This is one of the movies that put Cronenberg on the map. He’d already made a few low-budget horror movies, but this was seen and embraced by a wider audience, and it really exemplifies the themes that’ve characterized most of his movies: body transformation/mutilation, the horror of being different, outsiders pursued and destroyed by the corporate establishment.

 

McGoohan, in a supporting role as the scientist, is strong (as he always is), but the real standout here is Michael Ironside, who’s made an entire career based essentially on playing villains — often cruel and violent ones. His Darryl Revok is awesome, and not easily forgotten (the famous scene shown in the trailer is a great introduction to him).

 

 

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8 minutes ago, Telemachos said:

 

That would be telling. 

 

Although I'll say up front that I really tried to stay away from the more famous genre directors.

 

Well there is a Cronenberg film that IS fairly obscure/unknown nowadays that I am thinking of.  We'll see if it appears or not. :)

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