BKD Top 11 Movies

I’d never get up to 100. Eleven seems reasonable enough.

1. Unforgiven

2. Apocalypse Now

3. O Brother Where Art Thou?

4. Black Hawk Down

5. The Incredibles

6. Shawshank Redemption

7. United 93

8. L.A. Confidential

9. Bridge on the River Kwai

10. High Noon

11. Das Leben der Anderen (Lives of Others)

I guess my #1 criterion for movies is “re-watchability” — and writing quality, idiosyncratic a judgment as it is, also plays a huge role. Non-factors: cultural impact (I think) and whether I liked it when I was seven.

Saw Gone Baby Gone on Monday — weirdly structured and a lot of monologues, but also pretty gripping with some signs of brilliance. It did feel like it was a little torn between being a mass-appeal thriller and being Oscar bait. Darjeeling Limited last week fared less well by me, although as I didn’t ever catch the vision with Rushmore either, I’m not sure Wes Anderson’s ever going to have a chance. Probably going to  see Control tonight (about Joy Division’s Ian Curtis), which got very good reviews — and I figure that even if the movie’s slow, at least I’ll like parts of the soundtrack.



  • bkdunn

    In case anyone’s wondering, cinematography, soundtrack, and acting aside, Control seemed long and didn’t feel like it had enough story to be a movie. Although I end up feeling that way about all bio-pics, I guess. Still: I left the theater wanting to figure out where my Substance CD is and was amazed how every single shot in the movie looked like it belonged on an album cover.

  • Chris Bigelow

    I don’t get Wes Anderson either, thought Rushmore and other movies were REALLY boring.

    One director I really like is Alexander Payne. Totally loved his Election, About Schmidt, and Sideways.

    I would have a hard time making a list like this because I would feel like I’m not remembering some movies I’ve seen…

  • Enrico

    Hmmm…O’Brother at #3? You’re losing credibility…Did you receive some producer credits on that one or something? That’s not even in George Clooney’s top 10 list. Good to see Shawshank up there.

    Need some comedies in there, those are the most “re-watchable”. Tell me you can turn the channel if Airplane is on.

  • bkdunn

    I had credibility?

    The problem I have with comedies is that they’re usually not funny. And every time I go back and watch a comedy I used to think was funny (e.g., Airplane), I come away with less respect for my old self.

    And anyway, Bridge on the River Kwai *is* a comedy.

  • Vince

    I hated Darjeeling Limited and regret wasting 10.25 on it. I didn’t get it. Not only did it not click, but it offended me by trying to be artistique. On the other hand, I really enjoyed Rushmore and The Royal Taunenbaums. Wes should stick to story-telling. When he gets gungho about his setting, the plot (if there is any) sickens.

  • bkdunn

    My date was a big Rushmore fan and seemed almost livid at Darjeeling. It felt like they were making up the plot as they went along…

  • telkontar

    BK had a date?
    Rushmore had a few moments, but for some inexplicable reason I loved Life Aquatic — but not until the last 20 minutes. I kept saying, “This is the dumbest Bill Murray movie ever. I should turn it off.” But at the end, I was glad I was watching. Can’t explain that yet.
    O Brother — oh brother. I love Homer but there was no sense to that movie.
    Unforgiven — wonderful story with many truths to be told. Hackman should have squeezed the trigger rather than announcing that the shotgun misfired. Deeds, not words, Sheriff.
    Apocalypse — over-rated. Fine tale, some interesting scenes, a sense of the fog of war, but no Green Berets as entertainment or as edification.
    Black Hawk — fine action movie. I will re-watch it someday. Sports Illustrated recently rated Tiger Eunuch as the toughest athlete. They were wrong and why would anyone even consider rating tough athletes when almost any enlisted man (or woman) in Iraq or Afghanistan is 10x tougher?
    Incredibles — One of my 2 finalists for the one Hollywood movie I would take to a deserted island. Hilarious, action-packed, and right-wing in its social coomentary (eg. “they keep inventing new ways to celebrate mediocrity”). The family angle is wonderful and the slap at lawsuits warms the heart of this corporate attorney. Even Disc 2 of the DVD set was wonderful (not Bounder so much).
    Shawshank — Not worth watching, but better than O Brother.
    UAL 93 — Haven’t seen. Subject has great potential.
    LA — Not a big fan of film noire-esque. An entertaining couple of hours.
    Kwai River — Betrays the novel.
    High Noon — Classic tale of sheep (I mean townsfolk) needing a violent hand, but rejecting him at the same time.
    Anderen — Yet to be seen.

  • Flapjack

    I am free of my mantle and can now foray into bk’s kingdom (my hands are sweating). For comedies to be funny, they be watchable on a loop and with kids; e.g.,
    Three Amigos
    Princess Bride
    The Sandlot (I)
    Ghostbusters II
    Maybe: Shrek, Master of Disguise, Elf, Kicking and Screaming

    bk should respond to telkontar’s first query

  • amy

    Guess what. Airlplane was never funny in the first place. Comedies are the best re-watchable movies ever! I can laugh at funny stuff over and over again. (even Red Skelton) So, what about “Raising Arizona”? You must have forgotten about that one. Right? Oh, and I need to watch Sweeny Todd, I guess. Cuz you say that there are a couple of songs that are pretty well done, huh? I also need to watch the Patty LePone because I have seen it twice on stage (both amazing) and the dvd of the stage play with Angela Lansberry (amazing) and it is the ultimate musical in my book. Love it. In fact, my dream role is Mrs. Lovett. Do you think I could get the part?

  • bkdunn

    I tried to watch the old-school Sweeney Todd stage production on DVD and I just couldn’t do it. The guy playing Sweeney just was *wrong* and things all seem not-dark-enough. Wish more folks could’ve seen the revival from a couple years ago. It conveyed such brilliant anger — man.