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AFI's 100 Years... 100 Thrills: America's Most Heart-Pounding Movies (2001)

A look at the 100 most thrilling films in over 100 years of American cinema.



Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »


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A roundabout of Hollywood's top people talk about their favorite thrilling films such as Steven Spielberg, Ridley Scott, and Sandra Bullock. Films ranging from classics like "The Maltese Falcon" to blockbusters like "The Sixth Sense". Written by <MonkeyKingMA@aol.com>

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12 June 2001 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

Don't take it too seriously and it's a good time.
29 July 2001 | by See all my reviews

Like the AFI's previous lists, top 100 films and the top 100 comedies, the content of the top 100 heart pounders, as well as the order, will raise much debate. While some will welcome the debate, others will be infuriated by omissions as well as movies they believe to be undeservedly on the list. The list tends to be bias in favour of Hitchcock and Spielberg films and at times makes the viewer wonder what the AFI's definition of "heart pounding" is. Personally I'm still fuming over E.T: the extra-terrestrial's inclusion to the list, and not only that, but the fact that it's right next to Saving Private Ryan.

What this TV-special does provide is an hour of fascinating film clips from some of the best movies of all time. The narrative is provided by a variety of film-makers, actors and critics. William Friedkin and surprisingly Carl Weathers provide the best insight and commentary, and at the other end of the spectrum, Jean Claude Van Damme's mumbling makes you wonder if he's ever seen the movies that he's talking about. Some of the comments help in proving the intensity of the films, while others reveal bad choices by the AFI. Case in point: One actor's comment on All the President's Men - "It required you to listen to a lot of details, a lot of facts". OOOOhhh, i can feel my heart pounding!

All in all, the program was entertaining and educational for those who don't think that old films can be exciting. Except for the criticisms above as well as the spoiling of some movies (especially Psycho), AFI's top 100 heart pounders is a good way to spend 2 hours. Just don't take it too seriously.

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