My Favourites (Movies I can watch again and again)

Now, I know many on imdb, and elsewhere, are eagerly creating lists with their favourite movies, and while I'm not really the kind of guy who likes to go with the flow I did decide to create my own. Why, you probably ask, well, probably because I hope my list of favourites was going to have an impact or be so very different (a fact which is unavoidable since everyone has their personal taste when it comes to movies or anything else) it would shake people as if I had something else to offer.

Anyway enjoy, or don't enjoy, my list of movies which either left a profound impression on me or which I simply like.

Feel free to comment, praise, complain, rant or whatever else you wanna do. Just one little piece of advice before you start, "Take it easy."
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Cloud Atlas (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
An exploration of how the actions of individual lives impact one another in the past, present and future, as one soul is shaped from a killer into a hero, and an act of kindness ripples across centuries to inspire a revolution. (172 mins.)
“ Splitting its audience into those who consider it a standout masterpiece and work of art and those who consider it an over-long piece of cinematic drivel wasting huge amounts of talent and creativity, I am still somewhat considering my very own position on this film. Yes it is over-long. Yes, it can come across like pretentious drivel at more than only a few points. However, I love it, every minute of it, every time I watch it. The tactics it uses in its various finely interwoven story- and timelines. Using the same actors in each of them gives the entire journey a sense of continuity that lasts and feels rewarding from start to end. It combines genres like no other film has done before, albeit mostly mixing them up instead of simply putting them into the same pot to create an amalgamation of genres, creating more of a showcase for various genre specific stories. I cannot give enough praise to the directing team for almost seamlessly pulling it off and not to forget the design, look and feel of the film are, to me at least, unique in every sense. Among all of the cinematic journeys I have undertaken this must seem like the most memorable one in recent years, and what a journey it is. ” - fmaier
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A woman rebels against a tyrannical ruler in postapocalyptic Australia in search for her home-land with the help of a group of female prisoners, a psychotic worshipper, and a drifter named Max. (120 mins.)
Director: George Miller
“ I am ADDICTED to this film. ” - fmaier
Slow West (2015)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
A young Scottish man travels across America in pursuit of the woman he loves, attracting the attention of an outlaw who is willing to serve as a guide. (84 mins.)
Director: John Maclean
“ This film was a surprise. It basically crept up on me. I had had it on my watchlist for ages, well ever since I watched the trailer and saw Michael Fassbender and Rory McCann in it, two of my favourite actors of all time, and when I finally grabbed it on bluray I kinda had my doubts, even after the first few minutes those doubts weren't banished, not by the excellent visuals or the acting. But the film just got better and better by the minute.
The story is simple, a scottish boy travels to the untamed expanses of the American West to find his darling love who has fled there with her father for some reason, and bands up with an outlaw since, well, let's admit it, he's way out of his depth, and on the way to their destination quirkiness ensues, quirkiness and introverted conversations, and a bit of foreboding drama, and violence.
It's a love story, it's a western (though only through it's setting to be fair), it's a comedy (in parts), it's a damn good movie. Yes, it's slow, but what do you expect from a film called 'Slow West', and to be fair, I've always liked films that take their time, with their characters and their story. The two leads have a great chemistry, and there's so many little scenes and characters thrown in there that just make it so worthwhile. And let me just say here, what a finale, if I may say, it was glorious.
Of course it's not perfect, let's be honest, which film actually is, Jayden Pinkett-Smith doesn't seem to want to even attempt a Scottish accent, nor even the hint of a British one at that, and as I said before, the movie is slow. Though as I said before, there is a payoff that makes it all worthwhile. Some might even say some of the actors were underused, I know McCann surely was, and I had expected a bit more, though it was good to see him in it.
I noticed in hindsight that I may be going a bit overboard in praising this film, and I may change my mind about some of the aspects of the film once I've rewatched it a couple of times, but for now, this remains one of my favourite films of all time, and a real surprise. ” - fmaier
The Golem (1920)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
In 16th-century Prague, a rabbi creates the Golem - a giant creature made of clay. Using sorcery, he brings the creature to life in order to protect the Jews of Prague from persecution. (91 mins.)
“ I always thought I'd completely skip black and white silent films altogether, although that was before I became the big movie nerd I am now, way before. At some point it did dawn on me that I would at least have to give a few of these 'progenitors of modern cinema' a chance. There were all these old classics I had read and heard about, like 'Nosferatu', 'The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari' and 'Metropolis', it's unavoidable if you like films, and even more so if you live in Germany, since these films basically came from Germany and Austria.
However, if I had to choose one of them as my favourites, then this one would be it, well, that's why it's here. I came across it as a film on a special remastered edition DVD, though I was mostly baffled by the cover and the name, I didn't know films could have names as long as these, and part of me thought it was kinda stupid.
I knew about the Golem myth through my Czech relatives, some of which actually live in Prague, and through Ghost in the Shell: Innocence wherein there is a slight reference to it late in the film, and I suddenly became interested.
So, putting on my movie nerd glasses, I got hold of the remastered version, and needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised. Yes, it was a bit weird at first, it was so unlike any modern film I had seen up to that point, and I thought I'd give up reading all the text on screen, though I think my experience with foreign subtitled films helped me with that.
The film was dark and moody and the score was just sublime, not to mention the stunning visuals. It felt like I was watching something mythical in a way, brought to life on the screen, and the fact that it was from a time long long passed made it experience even more memorable.
Also there's a character in it who shares a name with me, so that was an added bonus.
Also the movie was made way before the rise of the Third Reich, yet deals, to a degree, with anti-semitism and prejudice, herein against the jews under Rabbi Loew. To me it is a prime example, that this attitude was a sign of the times, and did not merely start with the rise of the Nazis in the years to come.
But enough politics, it's a wonderful film, that stood the test of ages for me, a dark expressionistic fairy tale tapping into the very soul of human nature. ” - fmaier
Dark City (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A man struggles with memories of his past, including a wife he cannot remember, in a nightmarish world with no sun. (100 mins.)
Director: Alex Proyas
“ I love dark movies, and this one is especially dark, not only because most of it takes place in eternal night, also because of the dark and depressing, yet often very vibrant atmosphere it has. I also like surreal movies with interesting and mysterious sometimes ambiguous characters. This movie is truly the perfect treat, an interesting, intriguing and highly entertaining piece of film magic of which there are, I must say, many, but not many of such a calibre. ” - fmaier
Brazil (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A bureaucrat in a retro-future world tries to correct an administrative error and himself becomes an enemy of the state. (132 mins.)
Director: Terry Gilliam
“ I recently watched this movie on recommendation of several friends. I know that many people have this one in their top 20-100 list, and I have to admit I know exactly why. It is a stunning movie, that mixes science fiction elements seemingly seemingly inspired by Orwell's "1984" seasoned with the brilliant ideas and mindset of Terry Gilliam. Many label this a mere science fiction movie, but if you ask me, it goes beyond the conventions of mere science fiction adding to it an aesthetic that makes it a piece of art and a piece of work that deserves admiration and awe. It is a surreal, sometimes chaotic, often quirky epiphany. It twists and turns, never ceasing to amaze, always surprising and always keeping the viewer guessing in which direction it will jump off to next. ” - fmaier
The City of Lost Children (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A scientist in a surrealist society kidnaps children to steal their dreams, hoping that they slow his aging process. (112 mins.)
“ This one has an interesting sureal industrial look. It is dark at times, yes, but its has more of a quirky almost comedic atmosphere, something it shares with movies like Brazil. It is one of these brilliant fairy tales that keeps you guessing until the end. The imagery is amazing and the actors are fantastic. There are some French regulars in it and an expecially extraordinary Ron Perlman who dwells somewhere at the centre of all this wonderful madness. ” - fmaier
El Topo (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A mysterious black-clad gunfighter wanders a mystical Western landscape encountering multiple bizarre characters. (125 mins.)
“ I love Alejandro Jodorowsky, I openly admit it. He is a visual guru, a true mastermind when it comes to film-making. They are both subtle and honestly brutal in their scenery and their imagery, be it through religious subtext, philosophical concepts or images of sexuality and savage violence, racism, debauchery, the list goes on and on.
El Topo (Spanish for The Mole) was the first film by Jodorowsky which I got to see, and it remains one of his most memorable ones to date, not that his other films are not as memorable, I'd put them all in here, though it would make the list a bit, how to say, repetitive, and I have basically almost the same things to say about them, though with slight variations, the films do differentiate from one another in their approach to Jodorowsky's general philosophy. But out of all of them, I truly love this one, it may have been the trailer that got me interested, the proclamation it made that 'El Topo, is not a Western, it goes far beyond any Western', though I had been interested in his work before, notably 'The Holy Mountain' which I have not rewatched as of yet, though will do in foreseebale future. And though I got a slight sarcastic quip from my then housemate, in the vein of: 'So you watch this old weird film but you haven't seen Inception yet?' I stood by it and approached it with as open a mind as can be.
It is by far one of the best films I have seen, and has etched itself into my mind forever. It is brutal, uncomprimising, yet strangely philosophical and introverted at the same time.
Yes, it is an art film, and calling it a mere Western or measuring it up to standards of other more conventional 'hollywood-esque' films would be wrong, it doesn't compare, it comes from a completely different world. ” - fmaier
The Ogre (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Frenchman Abel Tiffauges likes children, and wants to protect them against the grown-ups. Falsely suspected as child molester... (118 mins.)
“ This movie is driven by the stunning and extraordinary perfromance by John Malkovich. It is dramatic, heartbreaking, even comic and quirky at times, yet it was able to cast its spell on me after the first few minutes of watching. It is subtle, yet pompous and epic at the same time. It is a story akin to a fairytale full of beauty, wonders and its own often evident, sometimes shrouded perils. ” - fmaier
Oldboy (2003)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
After being kidnapped and imprisoned for fifteen years, Oh Dae-Su is released, only to find that he must find his captor in five days. (120 mins.)
Director: Chan-wook Park
“ Words alone cannot explain how much I adore, admire and value this movie. It is sheer poetry, sheer drama, with a side so savage and vile, yet beautiful at the same time. Sheer art, eclectic and vibrant. A far cry, a cut above the rest, a tale so colourful and full of different emotions that it may almost seem a crime to be forgotten or put aside. ” - fmaier
Ichi the Killer (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
As sadomasochistic yakuza enforcer Kakihara searches for his missing boss he comes across Ichi, a repressed and psychotic killer who may be able to inflict levels of pain that Kakihara has only dreamed of. (129 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
“ I remember watching this for the first time in my life, I thought it was the sickest and most depraved movie ever to be etched into the world of celluloid. I didn't really like it. However, I couldn't really forget the movie, it haunted me. So I ended up watching it again. This time I slowly began to look beyond the blood and gore and what seemed to be simply depravity created for shock value. I came to view it as an almost philosophical movie, a trip through a surreal world of extremes and crossing lines. It is a masterpiece, a controversial one. An easy target for thrill seekers. When watching it some will merely see blood and guts and body parts and many will end up viewing it as a cheap thrill ride. However, it is an extraordinary ride, one drenched in savagery and monstrosity. It caught me off guard so many times and still has me thinking about its various images and its storyline to this day. ” - fmaier
13 Assassins (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A group of assassins come together for a suicide mission to kill an evil lord. (141 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
“ I absolutely love Japanese films, as many who will scour this list will notice, since there are quite a few Japanese films, especially so called Jidaigeki, so called genre films set in Japan's Edo period, primarily involving Samurai and feudal lords. Takashi Miike is one of my favourite directors and he more than succeeds with this outing, a brilliant historic drama, with lots of swords, fights and accompanying violence. If you like Kurosawa's 'Seven Samurai' you will most definitely love this, I did and I can't get enough of it. ” - fmaier
The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Herzog's film is based upon the true and mysterious story of Kaspar Hauser, a young man who suddenly appeared in Nuremberg in 1828, barely able to talk or walk, and bearing a strange note. (110 mins.)
Director: Werner Herzog
“ This is probably one of the greatest films ever made, in my opinion at least. Werner Herzog has a gift for scenery and ambienté, as well as creating an engrossing beautiful mood that denotes to what seems like the striving of mankind. It is a bleak look at society through the eyes of fledging personality and the naiveté of someone who has never experienced the diversity and cruelty of the world he was born into before. He uncovers the contradictions and absurdities of this world with unadultered clarity. There is the question of unquestionable logic that always applies without disent, other than using one's own logic, and the threat of this logic destroying fantasy and imagination. ” - fmaier
The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Two drag performers and a transgender woman travel across the desert to perform their unique style of cabaret. (104 mins.)
Director: Stephan Elliott
M (1931)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt. (117 mins.)
Director: Fritz Lang
“ Before watching this movie I hadn't heard of any of Fritz Lang's movies except Metropolis. During that time I was not too hot on watching silent black and white movies. It actually took me a lot of convincing to watch this movie, because I didn't even like movies that are in black and white, at least, I thought, it had sound. However, all my doubts were unwarranted, this movie was amazing and was grittier and darker than I expected. The villain is really creepy and the sceneries are just beautiful, the atmosphere is overflowing with a rich, dark aura that prevails throughout the whole movie and adds to the grandeur of this masterpiece of German cinema. ” - fmaier
The Name of the Rose (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
An intellectually nonconformist friar investigates a series of mysterious deaths in an isolated abbey. (130 mins.)
“ To me this is Sean Connery's finest performance, in a grandiose and moody piece of cinema that delves into the various perceptions and facades of religion and religious zealotry. This is a film I can always watch, be it for the magnificent scenery of the lone abbey looming over a godforsaken landscape, be it for Sean Connery as the intelligent and insightful William of Baskerville (in my opinion a clear tribute to Sherlock Holmes), be it for Ron Perlman as the deformed hunchback speaking in tongues (it has me repeating 'penetenziagite' for days afterwards), or F. Murray Abraham as the chilling historical villain Bernando Gui. There are great actors in this, ranging from French, German, Italian and the occasional American, all well placed and integrated into an interesting and gripping plot. No explosions, no gunfire, no swordfights, no, a mystery within the ranks of believers and religious fanatics. One of the greatest films ever made. ” - fmaier
Young Torless (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
At a boarding school in the pre-war Austro-Hungarian Empire, a pair of students torture one of their fellow classmates... (87 mins.)
“ Watching this film reignited my seemingly dead passion for German cinema. Its underlying philosophical principle and morale is one I have held and expressed for some time now since passing my teen-age, that the world is not a well-oiled machine nor a tightly-knit patchwork, but a chaotic mass, an amalgamation of several things notably good and evil, both which are defined by the people living within it. The world is not inherently good, nor is it inherently evil, and those within it walk atop a tight rope spanned on either side of them waiting to be tipped to either side. Morality is defined by those within it, so are the basic principles that lead to morality, what is defined as malevolent or kind. As described in the film, we are taught that when we rattle the bars of the cage that keeps us within our civilised and morale thinking, we will end up tearing them down, shattering the world around us that we have built for ourselves and those living besides us in peace and harmony. Nevertheless, the world goes on, evil happens, cruelty happens, pain happens, the world goes on, walking, marching, turning, and in the end evil, cruelty, primal urges are all part of human nature, incorporated in our biological makeup from our birth, we are as capable of evil deeds as we are of good deeds, it is accepting this that is most important. ” - fmaier
American Psycho (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A wealthy New York investment banking executive hides his alternate psychopathic ego from his co-workers and friends as he delves deeper into his violent, hedonistic fantasies. (102 mins.)
Director: Mary Harron
“ In my time of watching psychedelic, sureal, and not to forget violent movie I had to come across this one some day. It is a great movie with a staggering Christian Bale in the lead role. The movie's extreme imagery and harsh commentary play an important role yet never sidetracks the story. The lead character's urge for perfection is also executed extremely well and even seems hilarious a few times. Overall the movie is a sureal ride through the psyche of a depraved mind, whether the things you see are real or not, they remain shocking and leave you phased as to how twisted a human mind can be. ” - fmaier
We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Kevin's mother struggles to love her strange child, despite the increasingly vicious things he says and does as he grows up. But Kevin is just getting started, and his final act will be beyond anything anyone imagined. (112 mins.)
Director: Lynne Ramsay
“ In the history of modern cinema seldom has there been a film as breathtaking and savage as this one. Tilda Swinton playing the role of a concerned mother who realises early on that her son may be more than just a little bit different than the rest of the children. The movie's intense subject matter, sometimes dramatic, sometimes disturbing imagery and brilliant execution make it a milestone of modern cinema. Debatable throughout the film is the exact reason behind Kevin's behaviour and his subsequent violent culmination, did his mother give him too little affection, was there really something wrong with him or was he simply born this way. Nevertheless, among the nihilistic and hopeless landscape this movie paints onto the cinematic canvas there is an underlying tone of morality and of coming to terms with the losses and the atrocities of the past. ” - fmaier
The Skin I Live In (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A brilliant plastic surgeon, haunted by past tragedies, creates a type of synthetic skin that withstands any kind of damage. His guinea pig: a mysterious and volatile woman who holds the key to his obsession. (120 mins.)
“ A tragic and savage tale of love and the loss, of sick obsession and revenge. Almodovar bares his viewers an extraordinary tour de force that delves beneath the mere skin of imagination. The story is an exploration of painful turns of events which at first deals with characters whose painful backstory is uncovered with scenes of morbid sexuality. The story switches back and forth, the gaps are filled in giving the audience a different point of view and a perspective that differs dramatically from what they experienced at the very beginning until dealing with the loss and retrieval of one's identity. In the end the boundaries between good and evil are as obscure as these concepts themselves, everyone who was right was right, and everyone who was wrong was wrong. ” - fmaier
Headhunters (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
An accomplished headhunter risks everything to obtain a valuable painting owned by a former mercenary. (100 mins.)
Director: Morten Tyldum
“ A stunning and classy new-age Scandinavian mystery thriller that does not cease to amaze and offer lengths of entertainment and excitement from the first minute to the last. Like every classic puzzle this movie gives you an image before letting you put the pieces together. As our starting image we have the protagonist Roger Brown who's small size has led him to believe he has to be one step ahead of everyone around him, and his perfect life. A chance meeting and an unfortunate turn of events leads to Roger's perfect life disintegrating rapidly as he is tossed into a cat and mouse game against an adversary who will not rest until he reaches his utmost goal which involves Roger's premature demise. The plot is convoluted and tricky with one twist after another, yet not in a way that someone with a reasonable attention-span could lose track of it. The actors shine in their respective roles. The main character Roger Brown goes through several transformations throughout the movie; from arrogant, dominating and unlikable to pitiful, desperate and emotional. Likewise the viewer may go through similar motions, at first hating the main character and his stoic controlling personality, yet growing to like him and feel for him with more and more layers of his inner workings and true emotions being laid bare. This film is not only entertainment but one of the most groundbreaking and briliant works of 20th century cinema. ” - fmaier
Valhalla Rising (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Forced for some time to be a fighting slave, a pagan warrior escapes his captors with a boy and joins a group of Crusaders on their quest to the Holy Land. (93 mins.)
“ Watching this one reminded me of movies like Aguirre, movies that share a certain psychedelic feel, like a hazy day-dream under a ruthless scorching sun. The characters are players in a ruthless game, laid down by something unknown, maybe God, maybe the Devil, maybe something completely different, or maybe nothing particular at all. It is subtle in essence, yet its actions scream and call to them the attention they clearly deserve. The lack of dialogue is compensated by images of hilly landscapes and rocky tree-clad plains. It is a film that, every time I watch it makes me think what it is about. I consider it to be a story of seeking redemption. The main character is a killer who seems to have no remorse and no qualm when it comes to taking a life. Yet he seems to be seeking a way to redeem himself for the lives he has taken and the blood on his hands. The film can also be seen as a story that pits religion against paganism, wherein both are portrayed as clearly flawed, nevertheless with positive aspects and admirable feats. ” - fmaier
Macbeth (2015)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Macbeth, the Thane of Glamis, receives a prophecy from a trio of witches that one day he will become King of Scotland. Consumed by ambition and spurred to action by his wife, Macbeth murders his king and takes the throne for himself. (113 mins.)
Director: Justin Kurzel
“ I just recently came back from seeing this film and it was nonwithstanding a fantastic experience. I adore Shakespeare's play and have not felt that there had been a true great reimagining since Orson Welles' version from 1948 (I unfortunately did not like the Roman Polanski adaptation that much, a little too hammy for me), and oh am I glad there is one now. A truly visceral and not to forget savage piece of cinema soaked in breathtaking and truly poetic visuals. The soundtrack was amazing and complemented the scenery perfectly. There has been a tad of criticism I feel about the film's over-reliance on the visual aspects, but honestly, why not craft stunning visuals around the source material especially when you can and know how to.
Further criticism has stemmed from some of the actors and casting choices. I made the mistake of reading a review of the film before watching it and the reviewer, although seeming mostly positive about the film overall, felt that Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard were painfully miscast. I cannot help but agree that some of the accents may have been shifty or not completely on the dot, but you get the same feeling from Orson Welles' production. Fassbender was fantastic and his ability to carry a role with such grace and splendour always fascinates me, he is truly one of my favourite actors. Cotillard was equally breathtaking, almost stealing the show at a few occasions. And lets not forget the rest of the cast. David Thwelis was great as to be expected, I was truly sad to see him go so early into the film.
I'm always happy to see Paddy Considine take on parts like this. Knowing him from roles like in 'Dead Man's Shoes' and 'The World's End' he always seemed to have a sort of working class quality to it. This changed herein where he portrays Banquo, Macbeth's friend and subsequently victim in his power hungry schemes.
And then we come to Macduff, oh Macduff. Funnily enough to me the portrayal of Macduff has become somewhat more important than the portrayal of Macbeth, or any of the other characters as a matter of face. In the 1948 adaptation Dan O'herily utterly stole the show with his portrayal of the vengeful king slayer, a performance that will always we scorched into my mind. That is not to say that Sean Harris was any less fantastic, no his Macduff was more in the vein of a rugged scarred war veteran contrasting O'herily's more regal Macduff.
The film leaves us with a note of closure yet an open-endedness that hints that the cycle of violence and deception has not ceased with Macbeth's death. We see Malcolm in the throne room looking upon the crown and leaving it sitting upon the empty throne as if trying to deny the burden and toil it brings with it. We see Banquo's son Fleance retrieve Macbeth's sword from the battlefield then fleeing into red mist hinting that, since he is prophesised to be king one day, he may choose the same dark path as Macbeth did resorting to murder and betrayal.
I love this film, I truly do, I can easily see past some of its more obvious faults and have to admit that I did not like the usage of slow motion (something that to me has become somewhat of a trope within Hollywood, specifically with epic battle scenes) and the usage of an opening crawl a la Star Wars to set up the opening battle sequence seemed more than a pointless. ” - fmaier
A Bronx Tale (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A father becomes worried when a local gangster befriends his son in the Bronx in the 1960s. (121 mins.)
Director: Robert De Niro
“ One of my favourite movies of all time, by and starring the amazing Robert DeNiro, and not to forget written by and starring Chazz Palminteri who is just as amazing and breathtaking in his role. I actually first thought it would turn out to be a straigth-forward gangster movie, but it actually is more of a coming-of-age story and a drama with some shady characters rather than a pure gangster film. And of course it is a movie that highlights the conditions in the Bronx during the time it is set and growing up there as a kid. Like the Shawshank Redemption it is one of these movies I consider perfect and I could watch over and over again. ” - fmaier
The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.3/10 X  
Two imprisoned men bond over a number of years, finding solace and eventual redemption through acts of common decency. (142 mins.)
Director: Frank Darabont
“ When I watched this movie for the first time as a child its story deeply moved me. It stuck with me and remains one of my favourite movies up to this very day. To me it is one of these perfect movies, combining great acting, a simple yet moving story and that little bit of celluloid magic that gives it that one glint of perfection. ” - fmaier
Miller's Crossing (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Tom Regan, an advisor to a Prohibition-era crime boss, tries to keep the peace between warring mobs but gets caught in divided loyalties. (115 mins.)
Director: Joel Coen
“ The Coens' tribute to the gangster movies of the 40's, a violent and expectedly stylish tale of deception, criminal intrigue and murder. The characters and the dialogues play out very well, just as expected from a movie by the legendary brothers of cinema. The movie reminded me more of Akira Kurosawa's Yojiimbo than Last Man Standing starring Bruce Willis, whether it also draws inspiration from the original, I do not know, but I like drawing the parallels. As expected the Coens deliver a well-acted, interesting movie that does not cease to draw in the viewers into its intrigue-driven crime-noir storyline. ” - fmaier
Fargo (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Jerry Lundegaard's inept crime falls apart due to his and his henchmen's bungling and the persistent police work of the quite pregnant Marge Gunderson. (98 mins.)
Director: Joel Coen
“ It took me a long time to finally get to watch this movie, mostly because I was afraid it would disappoint me having great expectations beforehand. In the end my expectations were more than just met, they were surpassed (maybe they were too low to begin with). Nevertheless, I loved this movie, most of all how quiet and subtle it is most of the time, leaving you the more surprised and baffled when something does happen. ” - fmaier
No Country for Old Men (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon a drug deal gone wrong and more than two million dollars in cash near the Rio Grande. (122 mins.)
“ When I heard the Coen Brothers were making a new movie I was excited like a little kid who's spending his first night in a toy shop. And when I heard it won the Oscar for best picture I knew I had to watch it. With the same high expectations as I had before watching Fargo, I presume, I began watching No Country and once again they were met fully. Again it struck me as to how quiet and subtle the movie was at times, this of course leading to big moments being the more effective and leaving a greater impact on the viewer and the plot itself. The performances were exhilirating, Tommy Lee Jones as the sympathetic aging Sherrif, Josh Brolin as the cobwoy who thinks he has scored big and Javier Bardem as the looming villain haunting the screen like a dark presence. ” - fmaier
True Grit (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A tough U.S. Marshal helps a stubborn teenager track down her father's murderer. (110 mins.)
“ Another masterpiece by the Coen Brothers. The characters are lovely and well developed and it is full of memorable scenes and passages. The actors all do a staggering job and each and every one of them gives a brilliant performance, no matter how little a role they have. The dialogues and the characters are great, the atmosphere is moody and light-hearted. This newest movie by the infamous brothers does not dissappoint, it has true grit. ” - fmaier
The Fugitive (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Dr. Richard Kimble, unjustly accused of murdering his wife, must find the real killer while being the target of a nationwide manhunt lead by a seasoned US Marshall. (130 mins.)
Director: Andrew Davis
“ Harrison Ford at his best in this thrilling ride of suspense and adrenaline-fuelled action. It's a classic, it's the archetypal action film with the formula being reused over and over, plot twist and two characters on opposing sides that develop a professional vendetta yet understand eachother. Tommy Lee Jones shines as a Federal Marshal who hunts our main character Kimble with the obessions of Captain Ahab himself almost completely stealing the show. Watch this film, it is great, one of Harrison Ford's greatest films, be it only for the 'Scrubs' reference (The Janitor makes a cameo and this is a plot point during the tv-show 'Scrubs', for those who haven't seen or heard of the series). ” - fmaier
The Thing (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A research facility in Antarctica comes across an alien force that can become anything it touches with 100% accuracy. The members must now find out who's human and who's not before it's too late. (109 mins.)
Director: John Carpenter
“ This movie has an amazing atmosphere, you really feel the isolation and the loneliness that is being stuck in a point or place from where there is almost no escape. Add an unknown shape-shifting life-consuming terror from another galaxy, some panic, a bit of madness and chaos and you have the perfect formula for a legend in terror. This movie has a lot of seemingly quiet moments, some good build ups, an eerie soundtrack that sometimes seems otherworldy yet never interfering (it did surprise me that Ennio Morricone was behind the soundtrack though), good acting, a great atmosphere (yeah I mentioned it before, but to be frank I can't say it enough) and some nice surprises and imagery. ” - fmaier
Trollhunter (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A group of students investigates a series of mysterious bear killings, but learns that there are much more dangerous things going on. They start to follow a mysterious hunter, learning that he is actually a troll hunter. (103 mins.)
Director: André Øvredal
“ When I heard about this movie and got to know its premise, I thought it was ludicrous. I had no idea as to how this movie was going to turn out or what path it would choose to take, and that is what made me watch the move in the first place. Even though I did have my doubts about the premise and the movie's idea itself, it worked throughout. It was frightening, exciting, funny and most of all different to what I had seen up to then. I first viewed it as a mockumentary, then a horror movie, then a comedy, however a movie like this one does not yield easily to a mere category, it cannot be simply put into a drawer with the others, because I find it to be a cut above the simple majority. ” - fmaier
Cypher (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
An unsuspecting, disenchanted man finds himself working as a spy in the dangerous, high-stakes world of corporate espionage. Quickly getting way over-his-head, he teams up with a mysterious femme fatale. (95 mins.)
Director: Vincenzo Natali
“ This movie is a real treat, and one of those masterpieces that people tend to overlook. The story itself is sureal and takes place in an uncertain future with a rather familiar business look. The lead is not played by Brad Pitt or any one alike but by someone who can portray a character who is tossed into a world in which he merely serves as a puppet to be used and toyed with. Enter Lucy Liu who portrays a mysterious and ambiguous character apparently willing to help our protagonist to get through his troubles. It is the perfect formula for an entertaining piece of film that is just too good to be left alone. ” - fmaier
Blade Runner (1982)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A blade runner must pursue and try to terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator. (117 mins.)
Director: Ridley Scott
“ When I watched this movie for the first time as a child I did not like it, I thought it was too dark, too gritty and I didn't like Harrison Ford's character, I preferred Han Solo and Indie. However, I grew up and I came to the conclusion that I'll have to watch the movie again, mostly because I hadn't seen all of it, only the beginning. The Final Cut had just been released and I, being a fan of director's cuts and special editions, took the opportunity and got my hands on a copy. Needless to say I was blown away which is why this movie can now be found in this list of favourite movies. ” - fmaier
The Raid 2 (2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
Only a short time after the first raid, Rama goes undercover with the thugs of Jakarta and plans to bring down the syndicate and uncover the corruption within his police force. (150 mins.)
Director: Gareth Evans
“ In the words of Dennis Reynolds: "Anyone who doesn't like this film is A SAVAGE AND AN ANIMAL!" ” - fmaier
John Wick (2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
An ex-hitman comes out of retirement to track down the gangsters that took everything from him. (101 mins.)
Director: Chad Stahelski
“ Well Keanu, you've done it again and surprised us, now get going and whoop some bad guys' butts for our entertainment, or you could just shoot em a couple of times. Won't matter anyways, cos Luther from 'The Warriors' is cleaning. ” - fmaier
Seven Psychopaths (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A struggling screenwriter inadvertently becomes entangled in the Los Angeles criminal underworld after his oddball friends kidnap a gangster's beloved Shih Tzu. (110 mins.)
Director: Martin McDonagh
“ This is one of these films that genuinely surprised me. First of all, I was drawn to this film mostly by its ensemble cast, Colin Farrell, Sam Rockwell, the one and only Chris Walken, the ever-brilliant Woody Harrelson, and even my all time favourite underdog musician Tom Waits, boy what a cast. Nevertheless, the film was subject to a degree of false advertising in regards to its comedy contents, but so was McDonagh's previous film 'In Bruge'. Still, this is a black comedy and a great one too. The title itself can also be considered somewhat 'misleading' to some who do not appreciate the way the film plans out. All the actors are true gold in this film and act out their roles to the fullest. Some may have complained about Tom Waits not getting enough screen-time but since he left a profound effect on me as a viewer he was in it for just the right amount of time. Which brings me to the next point, the film is not so much about developing (or rather over-developing) a clear plot, which as a viewer can leave you guessing or on the edge of your seat for the next big twist. In a way the film is like a centipede, with every single leg playing part in the story. We get to closely examine some of these legs and each time we see something different which leaves an impression on us, be it an image that in itself is horrific, gruesome or mortifying or an image of utmost beauty, harmony or peace. This is also one of the few modern movies whose ending had me choked up. I will not spoil it for anyone, but the ending is to me one of the best examples of a story clearly headed to self-destruction turning itself around to become a story of self-sacrifice. Watch it and see, and if you understand it you'll appreciate it as much as I did. ” - fmaier
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies (2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Bilbo and Company are forced to engage in a war against an array of combatants and keep the Lonely Mountain from falling into the hands of a rising darkness. (144 mins.)
Director: Peter Jackson
“ Wonderbar!!!!!! ” - fmaier
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug (2013)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
The dwarves, along with Bilbo Baggins and Gandalf the Grey, continue their quest to reclaim Erebor, their homeland, from Smaug. Bilbo Baggins is in possession of a mysterious and magical ring. (161 mins.)
Director: Peter Jackson
“ Love it, every minute of it, enough said, won't go into detail, will only say, all the haters can get lost.

Not everyone likes Fantasy, not everyone likes the Hobbit, not everyone likes Lord of the Rings, or J.R.R. Tolkien, I adore it, enough said. ” - fmaier
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A reluctant hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, sets out to the Lonely Mountain with a spirited group of dwarves to reclaim their mountain home - and the gold within it - from the dragon Smaug. (169 mins.)
Director: Peter Jackson
“ Having watched this film twice in cinema now (once in English, in 2D I might add, and once in German in 3D) and after two grandiose showings I know one thing for sure, I want to see it again, and again, and again. It's a great and amazing adventure film, a whimsical tale of sword and sorcery wrapped up in the achievements and striving of small folks faced against great and unsurmountable odds. From the start this film has split viewers into two camps; one loves it and every aspect of it calling it a worthy addition to the already great Lord of the Rings trilogy and cannot await the next two films, the other dislikes it, even hates it to the very core calling it a plodding special effects fest that fails at pacing and misses every opportunity to do it's paper-bound original any justice. While I would consider myself to be part of the first camp, I do not really give a damn what people say. In the end it comes down to what every single one of us gains from this film, some get what they want and consider it a masterpiece while others gain nothing and dismiss it as a flop. I myself enjoyed myself heartily, it was an adventure I would be glad to share in over and over. Sure many people have dwelt on the film's technical aspects and it's gimmicks such as the 48p frame rate or the 3D, but for me these things are unimportant, for me the story is what counts, how it introduces it's characters, how it uses them and how they profit to the development of the story. Surely the movie is filled with special effects and can maybe be counted as one of this year's films utilising a ton of special effects, but movies change, technology changes, even films themselves admit to that, looking back at such stories as "The Artist" that deal with certain mediums becoming obsolete or certain aspects of film-making being innovated. We are no longer making silent films because we have sound, we incorporate special effects into films because it facilitates certain aspects and gives movie-goers images and pictures they cannot experience in real-life (yet). Of course there will always be purists, hipsters, critics and fans who do not agree and who we do not agree with, but that has always been the case, in every aspect of life, the trick is to find your own voice and not borrow someone else's. To sum it up, I was happy to be back in Middle Earth, I was happy to see Bilbo and Gandalf again, and I was incredibly happy to meet Thorin Oakenshield and his Dwarven company. All in all, I am looking forward to what is to come. ” - fmaier
Source Code (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A soldier wakes up in someone else's body and discovers he's part of an experimental government program to find the bomber of a commuter train. A mission he has only 8 minutes to complete. (93 mins.)
Director: Duncan Jones
“ An enthralling and potent piece of film-making originating from the creative mind of movie magician Duncan Jones. The story grips you at the core and shakes you around while you are waiting for its next unexpected step. It is a rivetting ride, relentless in its pace and in what it wants to achieve. And while it begins simple, with a soldier finding himself in the middle of a mysterious programme to alter the course of future events, the story runs deeper with every inch it progresses. There are many elements and layers that make us question morality as well as our potential and how far we are willing to go to change the world around us even by only a little, even if others tell us it is an impossibility. Of all movies I watched lately this one had one of the most brilliant and wonderful endings of all, and it came as a surprise to me. I'm truly glad I can add this movie to my list of all time favourites. ” - fmaier
Doomsday (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
A futuristic action thriller where a team of people work to prevent a disaster threatening the future of the human race. (108 mins.)
Director: Neil Marshall
“ Many will probably ask themselves with a confused and outraged inner voice, "What's this one doing here?" Well, lets call it one of my indulgences, I love Neil Marshall and this is, in my opinion, one of his best films. The things it references, the idea of sealing off part of a country (yeah, yeah, J. Carpenter did it before), the fact that the main character is called Major (a clear Ghost in the Shell reference, if you ask me). It has some really good actors in it, notably Bob Hoskins, Malcolm McDowell and Alexander Siddig and Rhona Mitra is extremely hot, that's the least that made fall in love with this movie. ” - fmaier
Unbreakable (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A man learns something extraordinary about himself after a devastating accident. (106 mins.)
“ This is my favourite movie by M. Night Shyamalan, it's style, it's many references to comic books and superhero mythology, the staggering performances by Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson, all this makes it an amazing journey for me. This movie has an aura while watching it, an aura that makes it seem almost psychedelic. The themes are otherworldy and are a take on the classic origin story of a superhero, yet it seems very down to earth and the characters seem as if taken from real life and not merely from a simple comic book. ” - fmaier
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
In future Britain, Alex DeLarge, a charismatic and psycopath delinquent, who likes to practice crimes and ultra-violence with his gang, is jailed and volunteers for an experimental aversion therapy developed by the government in an effort to solve society's crime problem - but not all goes according to plan. (136 mins.)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
“ Before I watched this movie for the first time I was afraid, afraid to be disappointed, being aware of its notoriety and reputation, however, looking back I couldn't say exactly why. After watching it the first time I was baffled. I had to watch it all over again. It is an amazing journey through a surreal future world, colourful and abstract, yet vile and violent as well. The characters are just as colourful and many turn out to be just as violent. The lead character's exploits as a brutal and boundless teen to his rehabilitation and his reemergence as a model citizen, and subsequently his role as a scapegoat and target for society to focus all its hate and anger upon, create a tale as timeless as anything of its kind.
This was also the movie that made me a fan of Malcolm Mcdowell, who remains one of my favourite actors to date. ” - fmaier
Taxi Driver (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
A mentally unstable Vietnam War veteran works as a night-time taxi driver in New York City where the perceived decadence and sleaze feeds his urge for violent action, while attempting to save a preadolescent prostitute in the process. (113 mins.)
Director: Martin Scorsese
“ This was the first Robert DeNiro movie I watched and it remains one of my favourites, as well as my first and favourite movie by Martin Scorsese. It is a dark gritty urban drama with many social undertones. It surprised me on many levels, not only just how utterly gritty and bleak it turned out to be but also plotwise. I'm actually a huge fan and ardent defender of this movie, so I hope ye don' start talkin' to me. ” - fmaier
Fight Club (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
An insomniac office worker, looking for a way to change his life, crosses paths with a devil-may-care soap maker, forming an underground fight club that evolves into something much, much more. (139 mins.)
Director: David Fincher
“ It took me a while until I finally watched this movie. There were people around me praising it beyond bounds, others were telling me not to watch it, their reason, "It makes no sense!" Well, finally growing tired of the praising and the bickering I rented and watched it and headed back to town the next day to hand back my loaned copy and went straight to the next video store to buy it. It made sense, and it was amazing. I think many may have been scared off or confused by the social commentary on consumerism and the often boring day to day routines that we choose to endure and how the characters choose to escape only seeing that violence and pain can grant them respite. However, I think many just don't bother anymore with these kind of movies. Here we have a stylish and smart movie that is funny, quirky and dramatic among other things, and yet people pefer to watch the piles of cheap crap hollywood throws at them year after year, while slowly drifting into routine, a vicious circle from which they seemingly cannot escape. I wonder what they've thought of to find their freedom. ” - fmaier
Transsiberian (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
A Trans-Siberian train journey from China to Moscow becomes a thrilling chase of deception and murder when an American couple encounters a mysterious pair of fellow travelers. (111 mins.)
Director: Brad Anderson
“ I stumbled across this movie by accident in a video store in England. I decided to get it because of the actors playing in it, most of all Thomas Kretschmann and Ben Kingsley, but also Woody Harrelson of whom I had become a fan after watching No Country for Old Men. When I approached the counter with the DVD the guy across the counter asked me if I had seen it before. I told him I hadn't and he assured my I'd be in for one great ride. It does have several quiet moments that are serene and and sometimes shady at the same time, of course, leaving more space for the big moments and the characters. It is a masterful film with lots of talent, a great atmosphere and, not to forget, a morale. ” - fmaier
Dredd (2012)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
In a violent, futuristic city where the police have the authority to act as judge, jury and executioner, a cop teams with a trainee to take down a gang that deals the reality-altering drug, SLO-MO. (95 mins.)
Director: Pete Travis
“ One of, maybe even my favourite Comic-Book film ever conceived. In all honesty I came to read the Judge Dredd and 2000 AD comics later than most and the character of the stoic and unbreakable Judge Dredd may not have been with me as long as other comic book and sci-fi fans around me, but it has been with me long enough to appreciate him as that what he is, the "the original bad-ass" in a hard as nails city, the "faceless representation of Justice" in a world where there is little left of it. And while this mythos has already had it's treatment by hollywood let's take a look what we got back then; cheesy "back-then top-notch" CGI and special effects, action, Sylvester Stallone....oh and let's not forget Rob Reiner whose comedic presence was probably the reason the film's garnered a lot of negative feedback. It is a cheesy joyride, enjoyable yet not really what fans expect considering the source material. What do we have now; Karl Urban as the faceless, neutrally-voiced icon of Justice in a world gone to hell, and it sure seems like it. It's an action film, the plot treads lightly yet surely and every action sequence is gold....what am I saying, it's candy, sweet as sugar with a little sour crackle thrown in for the aftertaste, and it's a good one on my taste scale. The characters are great and the landscape is bleak and savage just like it's meant to be. Surely certain aspects could have been fleshed out or could have been built upon, but for what it is and where it stands it surely delivers on every level. If I'd make a list of favourite comic book films, this one would be high up on the list, maybe even on 1st tier. Keep 'em coming. ” - fmaier
Dead Man's Shoes (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A disaffected soldier returns to his hometown to get even with the thugs who brutalized his mentally-challenged brother years ago. (90 mins.)
Director: Shane Meadows
“ This simple but brilliant film is a revenge drama film that shines a light onto the topic of revenge which others attempt yet fail to do to such an extent. Topics as these have been treated with huge budgets and with attempt to make more "cool" (Kill Bill 1 and 2, Faster) than going into the depth of the people involved and staying true to the actual concept of revenge and what it does to people. I will not give away anything about this film, mostly because it is one of the best films ever made, in my very humble opinion, and should be enjoyed by everyone on this beautiful earth. ” - fmaier
Léon: The Professional (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  
Mathilda, a 12-year-old girl, is reluctantly taken in by Léon, a professional assassin, after her family is murdered. Léon and Mathilda form an unusual relationship, as she becomes his protégée and learns the assassin's trade. (110 mins.)
Director: Luc Besson
“ This is my favourite film by Luc Besson, and probably also my favourite movie starring Jean Reno who gives a performance of a lifetime in this masterful movie. It is a rivetting drama with many brilliant performances. Natalie Portman is convincing and stunning in her young yet bold role. Gary Oldman is an excellent villain and an even better madman, showing both the ambiguous nature of a human being and the vile nature of a savage killer. The roles are perfectly cast, the story is heart-warming and tragic and action-packed, all flowing together to create a brilliant masterpiece of a movie that seems neither very French nor truly American. ” - fmaier
Layer Cake (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A successful cocaine dealer gets two tough assignments from his boss on the eve of his planned early retirement. (105 mins.)
Director: Matthew Vaughn
“ A british gangster movie both sly and stylish in its execution. The plot follows the utterly unnamed protagonist while attempting to cling to the rules he has set up for himself to keep his nose clean and more importantly stay alive. The movie features a greatl and rather balanced cast with an equally great Daniel Craig before becoming the newest incarnation of James Bond. I especially like the passages where someone merely explains something that happened in the past to attribute to the current situation giving the film a sense of history. The film deals with things both comically and savagely with some characters being a mockery of classic gangster clichés and some characters being the complete opposite of what one would expect of them. ” - fmaier
Stardust (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
In a countryside town bordering on a magical land, a young man makes a promise to his beloved that he'll retrieve a fallen star by venturing into the magical realm. (127 mins.)
Director: Matthew Vaughn
“ I was attracted to this movie mostly because Robert De Niro played in it, but also because I knew Michelle Pfeifer and Mark Strong were among the cast. Needless to say I was enchanted by this movie's magical atmosphere and its quirky yet fitting comedy elements that profits greatly from its many great performances. It is a lovely fairytale I can recommend to anyone who loves true fairytales about enchanted lands, kings and princes, witches and flying pirates. It also is a lovestory, a fact that will probably attract more than the forementioned, but what the hell, it's a lovely story. ” - fmaier
To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the Depression-era South, defends a black man against an undeserved rape charge, and his children against prejudice. (129 mins.)
Director: Robert Mulligan
“ This movie is a remnant from my time when I seemed to be watching nothing but courtroom dramas. However no other movie stuck in my mind like this one. The clever combination of a coming of age story, and the dramatic battle against racism and bigotry that takes places in and outside the courtroom. It is full of incredible performances and brilliant scenes. It is in black and white, seemingly to show that it takes places in a time when many people were only willing to see things in shades of black and wide. ” - fmaier
Mississippi Burning (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Two FBI agents with wildly different styles arrive in Mississippi to investigate the disappearance of some civil rights activists. (128 mins.)
Director: Alan Parker
“ There are a lot of movies that deal with topics like racism and bigotry and there those that do so better than others. This movie is the one movie that had an impact on me when it comes to these topics. The question, "Where does all this hate come from" is as important today as it was when the movie took place and when it was shot. It raises some important questions and deals with issues still prevalent during our modern times today. It is a powerful movie with two extraordinary leads and a wonderful cast gathered around them. A movie I recommend people to watch. ” - fmaier
Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
In the 16th century, the ruthless and insane Don Lope de Aguirre leads a Spanish expedition in search of El Dorado. (95 mins.)
Director: Werner Herzog
“ Another rather atmospheric film. It seems almost like a fever dream. The misty, seemingly mythical amazonian landscapes, their lack of civilization that the characters (and the viewers) are accustomed to, the mystic journey they have embarked upon, the constant feeling of doom and oblivion connected to it, the madness that results from this, all this and more is anchored within this movie making it an unforgettable, almost dream-like experience. The acting is amazing, Kinski as the mad soldier Aguirre is truly something for the books. The story itself seems like an old one, or at least like one done over and over by others, the search for El Dorado, the city of gold, but no other movie I know of has executed this old tale like this one has. In it the search or rather the obsession for El Dorado becomes a trip down the darkest isles of man's soul, a staggering vision of how far men are willing to go. ” - fmaier
Being John Malkovich (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A puppeteer discovers a portal that leads literally into the head of movie star John Malkovich. (112 mins.)
Director: Spike Jonze
“ I only recently watched this movie, and I have to say I was positively surprised. I was kind of missing this movie, never coming across it in any video store or seeing it being aired on TV. Nevertheless, I finally got to watch it and I loved it, especially John Malkovich's performance as himself (well not entirely). The movie is filled with surprises and great elements, all funny and highly intriguing. The idea, a stroke of genius itself, gives birth to a great movie and a genius piece of art. ” - fmaier
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
When their relationship turns sour, a couple undergoes a procedure to have each other erased from their memories. But it is only through the process of loss that they discover what they had to begin with. (108 mins.)
Director: Michel Gondry
“ This was an amazing movie, intense and touching at so many levels. Truly one of Jim Carrey's best performances and one of his better roles. I never really liked his comedies often finding them too childish and too stupid for my taste. But this one was sheer genius and sheer beauty in my opinion. It is a strange yet wonderful story with characters that are not larger than life but that viewers can relate to having their own problems, flaws and quirks. ” - fmaier
Adaptation. (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A lovelorn screenwriter becomes desperate as he tries and fails to adapt 'The Orchid Thief' by Susan Orlean for the screen. (114 mins.)
Director: Spike Jonze
“ I remember stumbling across this movie almost by accident. It seemed like an interesting movie back then. When I finally watched it its story, its imagery, its whackiness, its absurdity, all this and more took me aback only to reel me back in. ” - fmaier
Changeling (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A grief-stricken mother takes on the LAPD to her own detriment when it stubbornly tries to pass off an obvious impostor as her missing child, while also refusing to give up hope that she will find him one day. (141 mins.)
Director: Clint Eastwood
“ To me Clint Eastwood is an amazing director having found a place among the greats of movie-making and surpassing many of them in many ways. up to date this one of my favourite movies by this astonishing director, followed closely by Invictus. I must honestly confess that It was also one of the best performances by Angelina Jolie I have seen in years. The actors are well cast to portray figures in this historical tale. It's an extraordinary and breathtaking movie with a sense of authenticity through which, during some moments I actually for the first time believed I was looking at something that really happened without the movie being a documentary. ” - fmaier
The Descent (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A caving expedition goes horribly wrong, as the explorers become trapped and ultimately pursued by a strange breed of predators. (99 mins.)
Director: Neil Marshall
“ I find horror movies rather dissappointing nowadays, it's all just blood and gore plus formulas and premises recycled over and over again. However, when I came across this little jem of a horror movie everything changed and I was positively surprised as to how good it was. It was the first horror movie in years which made me feel that familiar twisted feeling in my gut. What feeling, you'll probably ask, nothing less than actual fear. ” - fmaier
The Descent: Part 2 (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.8/10 X  
Refusing to believe her story about cave-dwelling monsters, the sole survivor of a spelunking exploration gone horribly wrong is forced to follow the authorities back into the caves where something awaits. (94 mins.)
Director: Jon Harris
“ When I heard that a sequel to my favourite new horror movie was being made I was happy, yet dissappointed at the same time. Happy because I knew there would be more delving deeper into caves encountering collapsing tunnels, getting burried alive and stumbling over one or two corpses and the occasional cave dweller. I was however dissappointed that the first, being one of the best of the new generation of horror movies, boarded the train to camp sequel like so many others before it. However, the outcome didn't dissappoint me as much as expected. Being a hardcore fan of the first I actually enjoyed its offspring. Even though the look may have changed and some of the character focus may have shifted it is one of the better sequels out there. ” - fmaier
Hellraiser (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
An unfaithful wife encounters the zombie of her dead lover; demons are pursuing him after he escaped their sadomasochistic underworld. (94 mins.)
Director: Clive Barker
“ I don't know why I like this movie, and why it had me hooked and at the very edge of my seat, yet I know that Clive Barker and his work have something unlike anything else, a darkness that is different to other movies of their kind, a kind of urging feeling hidden deep down, something unknown, maybe even, something from another dimension, something from hell. ” - fmaier
Candyman (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
The Candyman, a murderous soul with a hook for a hand, is accidentally summoned to reality by a skeptic grad student researching the monster's myth. (99 mins.)
Director: Bernard Rose
“ Another vision of terrific terror out of the dark mind of Clive Barker. It plays with the idea of urban legends and the perception and mind of the main character. The viewer is challenged to delve deeper only to realize that nightmares do come true and will come to haunt you if one is only willing enough to believe in them from the dark bottom of their heart. ” - fmaier
Highlander (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
An immortal Scottish swordsman must confront the last of his immortal opponent, a murderously brutal barbarian who lusts for the fabled "Prize". (116 mins.)
Director: Russell Mulcahy
“ This movie, being a legend of cinema and fantasy, spawned several sequels, a couple of uninteresting tv-series, none of which achieved any great acclaim except rankings in lists for bad movies and bad sequels/spinoffs. As the catchphrase often overused in these movies says, "There can only be one", this one. ” - fmaier
The Mercenary (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A greedy Polish mercenary aids a mine worker and a peasent girl as they lead a revolution against the opressive Mexican Government and Army, while being pursued by an American rival. (110 mins.)
Director: Sergio Corbucci
“ If I want to watch a western I usually have to be in the right mood. However, this is not the case for this movie.
The movie is called "Il Mercenario", the Mercenary, so one would think Franco Nero's character, the Polish hired gun Kowalski, is the main character. I however beg to differ. The movie has several characters that are equally important, and while they do often tend to fight over who gets the limelight, something I actually value about the movie, they are a great assortment of figures with different personalities and different views on life. I do not consider it to be a pure western, even though it has all the features to make it one of the classics. I prefer not to put it into the same drawer as the other timeless spaghetti westerns. Why, maybe because I'm just in one of these moods. ” - fmaier
The Great Silence (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A mute gunfighter defends a young widow and a group of outlaws against a gang of bounty killers in the winter of 1898, and a grim, tense struggle unfolds. (105 mins.)
Director: Sergio Corbucci
“ A different kind of western, one that does not take the merciless scorching desert as the backdrop but relentless white forest landscapes riddled with high mountains and haunted by violent snow storms and bounty hunters just as violent and horrible. Some may consider the title misleading, The Great Silence, which hints that the main character is the mute gunslinger known only as Silence, however, Kinski's character, the brutal and nihilistic bounty hunter Loco, while being a despicable and loathsome human being, is more at the centre of the happening and is responsible for most of the developments in this movie. This western takes a different course and while stacked with the many classics of the spaghetti western genre can be seen as a very different masterpiece that stands out to other films of its kind. ” - fmaier
The White Ribbon (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Strange events happen in a small village in the north of Germany during the years before World War I, which seem to be ritual punishment. Who is responsible? (144 mins.)
Director: Michael Haneke
“ One of the best German movies of the last years. Hanecke manages to establish a depressing desolate atmosphere of impending doom which lingers over the course of this well-acted film. The scenery seems idyllic and peaceful with a sense of gloom conveyed by the characters and the events that are scattered throughout the plot. There is a theme of a righteousness hidden between the lines, a theme of punish and be punished, as well as a theme of class difference and living in a tightly-knit community with people that know each other yet are still surprised when finding out what their neighbours are capable of. ” - fmaier
Downfall (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Traudl Junge, the final secretary for Adolf Hitler, tells of the Nazi dictator's final days in his Berlin bunker at the end of WWII. (156 mins.)
The Great Dictator (1940)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
Dictator Adenoid Hynkel tries to expand his empire while a poor Jewish barber tries to avoid persecution from Hynkel's regime. (125 mins.)
Director: Charles Chaplin
A Ton of Luck (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Based on a true story, a group of 147 overworked and underpaid Colombian soldiers find the treasure they didn't seek; $46 million... (100 mins.)
Director: Rodrigo Triana
“ This movie was suggested to me by my Spanish teacher, it was one of her favourite movies and she thought it may help me improve my spanish. I loved it from start to end, it's a funny and intriguing drama. The story remains simple yet fun and takes you along after the first few minutes. It may at first seem like a soldier or military movie but it actually is a movie about values as well as the choices people make in life. ” - fmaier
Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
In the falangist Spain of 1944, the bookish young stepdaughter of a sadistic army officer escapes into an eerie but captivating fantasy world. (118 mins.)
“ Guillermo Del Toro's fantasy/horror masterpiece, full of stunning visuals and lovely creatures dwelling in a sureal semi-fantastical world placed upon the very real and gritty backdrop of the Spanish Civil War waged between intrepid insurgents and frigid fascists. Pan's Labyrinth is a jem of a journey into the world of imagination when the violence and terror of the real world seems too much to bear. Yet even in these fantastical corners of our mind can we find a purpose and a path to walk down that may just lead us out of the clutches of those around us that wish us and our loved ones harm to a better place. ” - fmaier
Return to Oz (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Dorothy, saved from a psychiatric experiment by a mysterious girl, is somehow called back to Oz when a vain witch and the Nome King destroy everything that makes the magical land beautiful. (113 mins.)
Director: Walter Murch
“ This is a great dark fairytale based on the famous Oz series of books by L. Frank Baum. It combines the playful fairytale style that Disney is known for with the dark and brooding landscape of Oz as a devastated utopia. Both scary and hugely fantastical, and a real surprise considering it came from the same studio that brought us animated fairytale classics. It is more in league with such playfully dark films such as Labyrinth that deal both with innocence and its confrontation with horrible malevolent evil (or David Bowie). A truly great take on the classic Oz tales and an unforgettable journey into a dark ruined world. ” - fmaier
Stake Land (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
Martin was a normal teenage boy before the country collapsed in an empty pit of economic and political disaster... (98 mins.)
Director: Jim Mickle
“ This film was a huge surprise to me. I didn't think much of the title, 'Stake Land', I thought it was just a cheap horror flick and what drew me to it was indeed the title and the post-apocalyptic setting. Unbeknowest to me this turned out to be a great film, great acting and characters, and for the fact that it is low-budget and independent, it surpasses a lot of what Hollywood has fabricated in the horror genre. It may not be scary but it is suspenseful and gripping. Some consider it too serious, with no black humour and less quirky and goofy than other films in its department, but who says horror films can't be serious, hell, they're supposed to be serious, if you ask me. If you look closely there is humour, there is social critisicm, and there most definitely is a great story which above all things can be considered a coming-of-age story instead of a 'coming-to-terms story' as some may expect. ” - fmaier
We Are What We Are (2013)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
The Parkers, a reclusive family who follow ancient customs, find their secret existence threatened as a torrential downpour moves into their area, forcing daughters Iris and Rose to assume responsibilities beyond those of a typical family. (105 mins.)
Director: Jim Mickle
“ I watched this film whole-heartedly expecting to hate it for the simple fact that it is a remake. Imagine my surprise when I realised this film actually was good, I enjoyed it whole-heartedly and though Bill Sage outshone everyone as the family patriarch. I was surprised again when I found out that the director is none other than Jim Mickle who directed 'Stake Land', one of my favourite post-apocalyptic/horror-films by far. The atmosphere is haunting and builds up to several memorable high points, and the Bill Sage's acting is stellar. A few revelations seemed obvious to me, but turned out to be no less shocking especially as the movie went along. I recommend this film to anyone who enjoys a well-acted atmospheric film that gets under your skin. It did that for me, to say the least. ” - fmaier
Acción mutante (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
In a future world ruled by good-looking people, a terrorist group of mutants led by Ramon Yarritu kidnap the daughter of Orujo... (90 mins.)
“ Ok, at first I didn't know where this movie was going, what intrigued me about it was its quirky look and its dark comedy. The characters are interesting and the plot is whacky and surprising. I actually found myself being more interested in the colourful assortment of characters rather than the actual storyline. The ending of the movie is just perfect, it is funny, dramatic and unexpected. I'll tell you this much, it all ends with a bang. I consider one of the major themes of the movie to be how easily society casts out individuals just because they are different or just because they are individuals and do not wish to conform to what society perceives as acceptable. Other themes that crop up are revenge, self-sacrifice and the hidden loathing for society. ” - fmaier
The Day of the Beast (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A Catholic priest teams up with a Black Metal aficionado and an Italian connoisseur of the occult to avert the birth of the beast, and with it, the end of the world. (103 mins.)
“ Another masterpiece by stunning director Alex De La Iglesia. A movie that combines religious prophecy and imagery with horror and black comedy. The characters are diverse and are unique in their very own way bringing with them their own personal quirks and attitudes. The Story is well paced and holds up perfectly against other movie with comparable plotlines about the end of days and the forces of satan. It is a devilishly good treat of a movie that, while utilising the mythology of Christian belief and several demonic and occult influences, remains a simple yet highly engaging piece of cinema. ” - fmaier
Midnight Cowboy (1969)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A naive hustler travels from Texas to New York to seek personal fortune but, in the process, finds himself a new friend. (113 mins.)
“ One of the best movies ever made, a countryside wanna-be cowboy wants dreams of scoring big as a hustler in New York City but seems to run from one hard patch to another. Eventually he befriends the strangest and seemingly least trustworthy person he meets along the way, a drifter like himself, and probably the lowest lowlife there can be. What develops throughout the course of this rivetting and enthralling journey is a friendship that is wonderfully engaging and heartbreaking. ” - fmaier
The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
An estranged family of former child prodigies reunites when their father announces he is terminally ill. (110 mins.)
Director: Wes Anderson
“ A thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining movie with a wonderful cast and unique and interesting characters. The story is quirky and is often hailed a comedy yet with clear dramatic and serious elements making it more a quirky funny drama movie than a pure comedy. The performances are great and the plot keeps you involved and has many shining moments that make you laugh, cry, sigh and in the end simply manage to make you feel good. ” - fmaier
Lady Snowblood (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A young girl is born and raised to be an instrument of revenge. (97 mins.)
Director: Toshiya Fujita
“ A truly poetic piece of Asian cinema, blood drenched and savage on the outside yet holding such sublime beauty and such stirring drama at its core. It was also among the first Asian movies I ever saw and is one of the reasons why I like Asian cinema. It is a relentless picturesque tale of revenge rich in imagery and emotion. ” - fmaier
Seven Samurai (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  
A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves. (207 mins.)
Director: Akira Kurosawa
“ The epitome of epic movies and an outstanding samurai epic and film classic. I never had much love for the Western "remake" but I know my heart beats for this ground-breaking and truly enthralling vision of a movie. This movie, to me highlights a facette of perfection, the story, the characters, the themes, all are perfectly knitted together for a grand tale of struggle, hope and the striving for honour and purpose in life. Each character represents a different layer of the story, each one possesses a different goal and purpose, be it the desire for honour or the hope to become a true samurai. What unites them is their mission, which pits them agains insurmountable odds, leading to a conflict that can yield so many results. This versicoloured mix of dramatic moments, humour and relentless swordfighting results in a movie that will forever be part of the pantheon of truly great and legendary movies that will continue to delight generations to come. ” - fmaier
Yojimbo (1961)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
A crafty ronin comes to a town divided by two criminal gangs and decides to play them against each other to free the town. (110 mins.)
Director: Akira Kurosawa
The Hidden Fortress (1958)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Lured by gold, two greedy peasants escort a man and woman across enemy lines. However, they do not realize that their companions are actually a princess and her general. (139 mins.)
Director: Akira Kurosawa
“ The movie begins as a comedic misadventure that involves two dim-witted peasants stumble from one unconvenient situation to another until being recruited by a valiant General on a mission to safeguard a princess from the vile clutches of heavily armoured samurai. The story is involving and full of colourful and interesting characters, and the drama as well as the comedy are always well-placed and fitting. Truly one of Kurasawa's best and an inspiration not only to the later Star Wars saga. ” - fmaier
The Tale of Zatoichi (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
The adventures of a blind, gambling masseur who also happens to be a master swordsman. (96 mins.)
Director: Kenji Misumi
“ The first in a long run of movies that deal the honourable gambling travelling masseur/master swordsman Zatoichi. A movie that, alongside the second part, sums up my love for Japanese cinema and Asian filmmaking. The main character is interesting and is clearly flawed and knows about his own imperfections yet is always ready to help and stand in for the innocent. The fact that a character who is shun by the world and who views himself as a crook can find honour in his actions should be redeeming enough but Zatoichi's journey is long and there are a lot of lives to save on the way. ” - fmaier
Zoku Zatôichi monogatari (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
The blind masseur and swordsman, Zatoichi, learns of a powerful political figure's secret and is quickly tailed by a group of killers. (72 mins.)
Director: Kazuo Mori
“ The second movie in the long and great saga of Zatoichi, and almost a direct follow-up to the first one. Zatoichi returns to the scene of the first movie to find that some things have gone awry and that he is a feared man many want to rid themselves of, among all these that wish death upon our protagonist is a lone masterless samurai who seems somehow connected to Zatoichi and his past. The story trods on while Zatoichi revisits familiar places with familiar faces until he is forced to draw his sword from the sheath once again. ” - fmaier
Lone Wolf and Cub: Sword of Vengeance (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
The story of a Ronin (i.e. a masterless samurai) who wanders the countryside of Japan with his small child, having various adventures. (83 mins.)
Director: Kenji Misumi
“ Another violent japanese samurai cinema classic. The first of a series of excellent sword and samurai flicks. Extremely violent and highly intriuging and driven. The plot is simple, yet interesting and the action sometimes short, but always great. ” - fmaier
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart at the River Styx (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Trailed by a clan of female ninja, Ogami is paid to assassinate a clan traitor accompanied by three killers known as the Gods of Death. (95 mins.)
Director: Kenji Misumi
“ The second movie continues the series' storyline while making enough use of its trademark violence and sword and samurai action. Probably among my favourites of the series, followed closely by the first and third. Pursued now not only by his archrivals but a group of female ninjas the protagonist and his son traverse down the road to hell only to be halted at the river of death. ” - fmaier
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart to Hades (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Ogami Itto volunteers to be tortured by the yakuza to save a prostitute and is hired by their leader to kill an evil chamberlain. (89 mins.)
Director: Kenji Misumi
“ The thirds installment of this savage samurai saga. Our protagonist and his young son are pitted against a corrupt governour and his army of rogues and hired killers, and once again his rivals attempt to catch up with him, all which culminates into a movie filled with bloody swordsplay and relentless duels. ” - fmaier
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in Peril (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Ogami is hired to kill a tattooed female assassin. Gunbei Yagyu, an enemy samurai, happens upon Ogami's son, and sees his chance for revenge. (81 mins.)
Director: Buichi Saitô
“ Another great installment in the series. After battling armies of mercenaries, rogue samurai and violent shinobi our protagonist and his son are pitted against a lone female assassin sporting crafty sword trickery, horrifying tattoos, and her very own backstory. Hired once again to do someone else's dirty work, violence, bloodshed and a great deal of swordfighting ensues once again. ” - fmaier
Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart in the Land of Demons (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Five warriors challenge Ogami to duels. Each holds a part of information needed to complete the assassination of a mad clan leader. (89 mins.)
Director: Kenji Misumi
“ Called into action once again our protagonist and his young son are charged with the contract to unveil a lord's corruption and grant him his deserved justice planning to settle an old score on route to their goal. There seems to be more swordfigthing in this installment than in all the others put together. The build up to the usual showdown seems longer and riddled with more corpses and more rivers of blood than usual within the usual carnage and storm of steely swords. ” - fmaier
Lone Wolf and Cub: White Heaven in Hell (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
In the sixth and final film of the Lone Wolf and Cub series, the final conflict between Ogami Itto and the Yagyu clan is carried out. (83 mins.)
“ In the final installment of this relentless blood-drenched series our protagonist seems to have his archrivals cornered leaving them no other choice but to resort to hire the most notorious and most cryptic members of their society that are feared even by the leaders of their clan. Suddenly the tables are turned and our protagonist seems in dire distress, but of course he is not willing to give up as long as he has his trusty sword and some surprises down his sleeve. ” - fmaier
Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
After being used and betrayed by the detective she had fallen in love with, young Matsu is sent to a female prison full of sadistic guards and disobedient prisoners. (87 mins.)
Director: Shun'ya Itô
“ This one starts off another great movie series of the Japanese film landscape. A film about revenge and the lengths one must go to and the depths one must go through to reach it. Relentless and savage with an edge and an aesthetic to it which many modern movies lack. There are sequences that, for the subject matter, and the kind of film it is, seem rather artistic, a characteristic that lifts this film from others of its kind. ” - fmaier
Joshû sasori: Dai-41 zakkyo-bô (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
After spending a year in solitary confinement, Matsu escapes from prison with six more convicts, followed by the guards led by the vengeful warden who wants her dead at all costs. (90 mins.)
Director: Shun'ya Itô
“ The second of this staggering series, and my favourite installment. More surreal and more violent and though provoking than the first. It can be compared to a relentless journey not only for freedom but also through the thoughts and psyche of the protagonist. A movie that seems as if it wishes to convey a message hidden beneath the thin shroud it conceals itself with. ” - fmaier
Shinjuku Triad Society (1995)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Amidst a Chinese and Japanese mafia war, a lawyer for the Chinese mob finds a rift forming between him and his corrupt police office brother. (100 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
“ The first part of Takashi Miike's Yakuza Trilogy, a trilogy linked by an overreaching theme rather than an all-encompassing story, is a stoic cold look into a violent and savage Japanese Underworld. Within this bleak setting a seemingly straight laced cop grapples to free his younger brother out of the clutches of a Chinese ganglord who is as ruthless as he is depraved, all the while trying to keep hold of his soul in the process. It's violent, it's downright depraved and, to some surprise, even has a side of awkward humour coming with it, it's Miike at his rawest and his best. ” - fmaier
Rainy Dog (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A Japanese assassin stranded in Taiwan must take work from a local crime boss to make ends meet when suddenly a woman from his past delivers a son to him. (95 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
“ The second part of Miike's Yakuza Trilogy flows in some ways more like a Takeshi Kitano film or even a modernised Samurai tale wherein the main character is a disgraced Yakuza Killer having to lay low in China while of course people are after his guts, and to top things off his ex wife drops off their son for him to take care of, alone. Showing that he can be a director that can not only tell a story that invokes shock and disgusted awe in his viewers but also one of subtle emotions. A slow, brooding emotional journey from cult director Takashi Miike. ” - fmaier
Five Numbers! (2011 Short Film)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Five people and a cat discover themselves in a prison, with the power cut, no guards - and no exit. Where are they? And what are they doing there? And what is the significance of the numbers on their uniforms? (25 mins.)
Director: Hiroaki Ando
“ This rather short animated film is a darkly comic metaphor for luck, introducing interesting characters and a cryptic and intriguing storyline that reveals itself during the 25 minutes it runs. Each character has a unique personality and a backstory that is briefly touched upon. The ending can be viewed as the final *beep* You" for a dying world. One of the themes of this little flick seems to be that everyone's luck runs out eventually, a person's luck, a nation's luck, even the luck of an entire world. ” - fmaier
Knockin' on Heaven's Door (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
Two young men, Martin and Rudi, both suffering from terminal cancer, get to know each other in a hospital room... (87 mins.)
Director: Thomas Jahn
“ I don't like this movie because I'm German or because it is German. It's a rollercoaster ride, fun and emotional and full of spunk and with a nice spirit, worthy enough to compete with anything that hollywood tends to throw at us nowadays, if you ask me. It also has one of the best guest appearances of one of my favourite actors, that alone makes it worthwhile for me. ” - fmaier
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
In the bleak days of the Cold War, espionage veteran George Smiley is forced from semi-retirement to uncover a Soviet agent within MI6. (122 mins.)
Director: Tomas Alfredson
“ This stunning British espionage thriller/drama is riddled with staggering star performances. Gary Oldman plays the lead role of George Smiley with bravado and conviction making it one of his finest roles to date deserving more than just a tip of the hat from audiences and fellow actors. The storyline, while convoluted, takes the viewers into the world of secret agents and global espionage. It remains fresh and interesting no matter where it stands or where it decides to go. The characters are portrayed wonderfully by the actors showing that these are people who are good at what they do, and while not having problems with their job or the decisions they have to make it is the human factor, feelings, emotions, personal relationships that interfere with them and make their work complicated. Full of wonderful performances and a smart and interesting plot this movie is a revelation and shows that in the age of bright lights, loud sounds, explosions, special effects and IMAX 3D, movies with real actors and souls still exist. ” - fmaier
The King's Speech (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
The story of King George VI of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, his impromptu ascension to the throne and the speech therapist who helped the unsure monarch become worthy of it. (118 mins.)
Director: Tom Hooper
Dead Ringers (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
Twin gynecologists take full advantage of the fact that nobody can tell them apart, until their relationship begins to deteriorate over a woman. (116 mins.)
“ A stunning and rivetting psychological horror movie by David Cronenberg, the lord of luscious suspense and psychological terror. It stars Jeremy Irons in an equally stunning double role as the twins Elliot and Beverley, gynecologists that from an early stage in their lives share success, recognition, love and suffering, while occasionally being portrayed almost like polar opposites. This film is beautifully disturbing. We seldomly leave the sheltering microcosm of the twin's practice or their appartment with the outside world being nevertheless present yet at the same time not having any true influence on the protagonists. This nevertheless is an asset to portraying the lonliness of the characters in their togetherness. ” - fmaier
The Prestige (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
Two stage magicians engage in competitive one-upmanship in an attempt to create the ultimate stage illusion. (130 mins.)