Joshua's recommendations

by Hoggie33 | created - 3 weeks ago | updated - 1 week ago | Public

List of titles, I have been impressed with during my years of existence. I have only selected broadcasts which I will have watched multiple times.

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1. Black Mirror (2011– )

TV-MA | 60 min | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

An anthology series exploring a twisted, high-tech world where humanity's greatest innovations and darkest instincts collide.

Stars: Daniel Lapaine, Hannah John-Kamen, Michaela Coel, Beatrice Robertson-Jones

Votes: 345,888

Directed exceptionally well. Extremely well written. Each episode is different and it's own creative masterpiece (occasionally with a series theme which is revealed on the final episode of the series).

Action packed episodes with deep underlying plots, often which could be expanded upon to be it's own drama/Film in itself. I find the series exceptionally gripping to watch. It's very deep and episodes vary in terms of their genre. There were no qualms in my placement at number 1.

Black Mirror often casts a future in which technology hasn't worked out and took a dystopian turn against humanity. I would suggest that technology can be desirable (in Black Mirror) but 70% of the time it doesn't go to plan. It's the technology that's the worm at the core of the apple.

Technology is something which has been shaping our consciousness. Spending many hours each day with a powerful device such as the IPhone redefines what it means to be human giving arise to far greater intelligence and capabilities. A person with a smartphone has access to a lot more information than without. Technology will continue to alter human development.

Back Mirror does highlight this. It is a "one of a kind". Creative masterpiece for imaging what will be possible and where morality may need to evolve looking ahead.

2. Crumb (1994)

R | 119 min | Documentary, Biography, Comedy

93 Metascore

An intimate portrait of controversial cartoonist Robert Crumb and his traumatized family.

Director: Terry Zwigoff | Stars: Robert Crumb, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Charles Crumb, Maxon Crumb

Votes: 17,030 | Gross: $3.17M

Gripping, Powerful & Deeply Unsettling. This is a one of a kind documentary which highlights a warning of human development gone wrong.

Crumb delves into the darkest elements of the human psyche in a truly terrifying way: broadcasting a failed hero story.

Crumb isn't necessarily a pleasant watch but offers great psychoanalytical insight. If you pay attention, you can get get an insight into the mind of a serial sexual predator. I find the documentary fascinating watched it multiple times.

3. Airplane! (1980)

PG | 88 min | Comedy

78 Metascore

A man afraid to fly must ensure that a plane lands safely after the pilots become sick.

Directors: Jim Abrahams, David Zucker, Jerry Zucker | Stars: Robert Hays, Julie Hagerty, Leslie Nielsen, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Votes: 192,791 | Gross: $83.40M

Exceptionally funny. Couldn't stop laughing was in complete hysterics - first time I watched this. It does have a marmite impact on people but I absolutely loved it!

"Surely you can't be serious" "I am serious and don't call me Shirley"

"We have got to land this plane, we need to get to a hospital" "Doctor, a hospital! What it is" "It's a large building with many windows but that's not important right now"

Police Squad has a similar quality to it!

4. Fight Club (1999)

R | 139 min | Drama

66 Metascore

An insomniac office worker and a devil-may-care soapmaker form an underground fight club that evolves into something much, much more.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, Meat Loaf, Zach Grenier

Votes: 1,700,251 | Gross: $37.03M

"The first rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club. The second rule of Fight Club is: You do not talk about Fight Club [...]"

The film's narrator, lives a dead-end life as insignificant cog in the corporate machine. A slave to no master; possessed by his own IKEA possessions. An anti-consumerism path is taken to it's logical extreme. As the pendulum swings from a life categorised by excess order to excess chaos.

A "nothing" existence lives in solidarity because nothing cannot unite. Nothing only divides. A "group" existence lives in collation under a banner of collective cooperation because of a shared collective identity or joint sense of purpose.

"Fight Club" provides a meaningful powerful engagement to the world for lost alienated individuals. The prospect of being apart of a tribe (something much bigger than themselves) gives people hope for the future. But with the resentful and vengeful undertone of Tyler Durden, things escalate towards a mob like mentality. As the exclusive gang expands in numbers, stature and purpose.

5. Gran Torino (2008)

R | 116 min | Drama

72 Metascore

Disgruntled Korean War veteran Walt Kowalski sets out to reform his neighbor, a Hmong teenager who tried to steal Kowalski's prized possession: a 1972 Gran Torino.

Director: Clint Eastwood | Stars: Clint Eastwood, Bee Vang, Christopher Carley, Ahney Her

Votes: 675,818 | Gross: $148.10M

Walt is a security guard who makes no apologies for who he is. He sits on his porch, protecting his own security & turf with his shotgun at hand - ready to lock and load.

This movie is about the belated flowering of a man's better nature & Americans of different races growing more open to one another in the new century.

Walt initially despises the Asian family next door who he would refer to as "gooks" and "chinks". But after becoming strangely linked with them. He begins to warm to their welcome & their work ethic. When he decide he likes his neighbours better than his own family & it means something because of the authenticity of Walt's character. It involves a transformation into seeing the enemy next door to the people you love.

6. Sherlock (2010– )

TV-14 | 88 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

A modern update finds the famous sleuth and his doctor partner solving crime in 21st century London.

Stars: Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman, Una Stubbs, Rupert Graves

Votes: 722,723

Not a big fan of Moffet generally (as well as coming across as an overpaid arrogant prick on his BBC interviews), he often left holes in his plots.

Apart from that, as the occasional irritation. And showing 3 episodes every 2 years! Seriously BBC what the hell!

You could tell that a lot of time had been spent on each episode. Each episode was directed extremely well. I do think it is the best thing that has come out of the BBC. Sherlock was a brilliant character, providing necessary humour. Plots are often gripping crime scenes which Sherlock and John Motson attempt to solve.

7. Inception (2010)

PG-13 | 148 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

74 Metascore

A thief who steals corporate secrets through the use of dream-sharing technology is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a C.E.O.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ellen Page, Ken Watanabe

Votes: 1,865,037 | Gross: $292.58M

Very confusing movie. It starts with a premise of the idea of being able to enter dreams (the subconscious psyche of a human being) to find out information or alter individual decision making. When entering someone's dream it is much like being in your own dream. Everything feels real till you wake up.

Entering dreams has it's complications (as does entering different levels of dreams!). It's a confusing watch (at times) but I found the whole idea very original. The cast is A list and the movie is directed very well. The characters undergo on their mission/adventure and I found it gripping.

8. The Sixth Sense (1999)

PG-13 | 107 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

64 Metascore

A boy who communicates with spirits seeks the help of a disheartened child psychologist.

Director: M. Night Shyamalan | Stars: Bruce Willis, Haley Joel Osment, Toni Collette, Olivia Williams

Votes: 852,992 | Gross: $293.51M

9. Casino (1995)

R | 178 min | Crime, Drama

73 Metascore

A tale of greed, deception, money, power, and murder occur between two best friends: a mafia enforcer and a casino executive, compete against each other over a gambling empire, and over a fast living and fast loving socialite.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Robert De Niro, Sharon Stone, Joe Pesci, James Woods

Votes: 419,149 | Gross: $42.44M

10. It (I) (2017)

R | 135 min | Horror

69 Metascore

In the summer of 1989, a group of bullied kids band together to destroy a shape-shifting monster, which disguises itself as a clown and preys on the children of Derry, their small Maine town.

Director: Andy Muschietti | Stars: Bill Skarsgård, Jaeden Martell, Finn Wolfhard, Sophia Lillis

Votes: 375,239 | Gross: $327.48M

It's a brilliant movie. The original is good also.

I felt the film was worth the hype. The clown (Penny-vile) is a very scary character and the Georgie boat scene is a classic movie scene.

The movie is very good, very gripping throughout - certainly has some very good jumpy parts. Yeah I was very impressed.

11. Groundhog Day (1993)

PG | 101 min | Comedy, Fantasy, Romance

72 Metascore

A weatherman finds himself inexplicably living the same day over and over again.

Director: Harold Ramis | Stars: Bill Murray, Andie MacDowell, Chris Elliott, Stephen Tobolowsky

Votes: 546,835 | Gross: $70.91M

This movie is a classic.

The plot hypothesises what happens if you wake up and it's the same day everyday without fail and with no escape. If you was to be in a time bubble living the same day over and over again. What would that be like?

It's comical and it's very amusing. But also a feel good movie as Phil initially "curses" his luck before he eventually finds peace.

12. A Beautiful Mind (2001)

PG-13 | 135 min | Biography, Drama

72 Metascore

After John Nash, a brilliant but asocial mathematician, accepts secret work in cryptography, his life takes a turn for the nightmarish.

Director: Ron Howard | Stars: Russell Crowe, Ed Harris, Jennifer Connelly, Christopher Plummer

Votes: 779,736 | Gross: $170.74M

13. Forrest Gump (1994)

PG-13 | 142 min | Drama, Romance

82 Metascore

The presidencies of Kennedy and Johnson, the events of Vietnam, Watergate, and other history unfold through the perspective of an Alabama man with an IQ of 75.

Director: Robert Zemeckis | Stars: Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise, Sally Field

Votes: 1,636,096 | Gross: $330.25M

14. Shutter Island (2010)

R | 138 min | Mystery, Thriller

63 Metascore

In 1954, a U.S. Marshal investigates the disappearance of a murderer, who escaped from a hospital for the criminally insane.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Emily Mortimer, Mark Ruffalo, Ben Kingsley

Votes: 1,020,157 | Gross: $128.01M

A U.S. Marshal investigates the disappearance of a murderer, who escaped from a hospital for the criminally insane.

It's extremely well directed and contains great acting during the spectacle. It's very jumpy. It's got great plot to it. It's very much a mystery which reveals itself in great dramatic fashion.

There is a very powerful and strong development of main character during the movie. The main character’s past is increasingly questioned as the viewer. I found it exceptionally gripping!

Brilliant!

15. Trainspotting (1996)

R | 93 min | Drama

83 Metascore

Renton, deeply immersed in the Edinburgh drug scene, tries to clean up and get out, despite the allure of the drugs and influence of friends.

Director: Danny Boyle | Stars: Ewan McGregor, Ewen Bremner, Jonny Lee Miller, Kevin McKidd

Votes: 594,643 | Gross: $16.50M

16. Catch Me If You Can (2002)

PG-13 | 141 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

75 Metascore

A seasoned FBI agent pursues Frank Abagnale Jr. who, before his 19th birthday, successfully forged millions of dollars' worth of checks while posing as a Pan Am pilot, a doctor, and a legal prosecutor.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hanks, Christopher Walken, Martin Sheen

Votes: 731,758 | Gross: $164.62M

17. Step Brothers (2008)

R | 98 min | Comedy

51 Metascore

Two aimless middle-aged losers still living at home are forced against their will to become roommates when their parents marry.

Director: Adam McKay | Stars: Will Ferrell, John C. Reilly, Mary Steenburgen, Richard Jenkins

Votes: 249,276 | Gross: $100.47M

18. 10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)

PG-13 | 103 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery

76 Metascore

After getting in a car accident, a woman is held in a shelter with two men, who claim the outside world is affected by a widespread chemical attack.

Director: Dan Trachtenberg | Stars: John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher Jr., Douglas M. Griffin

Votes: 264,314 | Gross: $71.90M

Somewhat scary movie. A women is trapped enslaved by an overpowering man. Who is keeping her in his basement by tyrannical force.

The man claims good intent, that there has been a "widespread chemical attack". It's a very gripping spectacle and you sympathise with the prognostic of this movie. Who desires freedom at all costs.

19. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

R | 142 min | Drama

80 Metascore

Two imprisoned men bond over a number of years, finding solace and eventual redemption through acts of common decency.

Director: Frank Darabont | Stars: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Bob Gunton, William Sadler

Votes: 2,126,987 | Gross: $28.34M

20. The Other Guys (2010)

PG-13 | 107 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

64 Metascore

Two mismatched New York City detectives seize an opportunity to step up like the city's top cops, whom they idolize, only things don't quite go as planned.

Director: Adam McKay | Stars: Will Ferrell, Mark Wahlberg, Derek Jeter, Eva Mendes

Votes: 223,996 | Gross: $119.22M

21. Churchill (2017)

PG | 105 min | Biography, Drama, History

44 Metascore

96 hours before the World War II invasion of Normandy, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill struggles with his severe reservations with Operation Overlord and his increasingly marginalized role in the war effort.

Director: Jonathan Teplitzky | Stars: Brian Cox, Miranda Richardson, John Slattery, Julian Wadham

Votes: 12,316 | Gross: $1.24M

The accuracy of the film is contestable. However, it's a very heartwarming film about a time when Britain was Great Britain. A time when everyone united together around a leader.

The film shows Churchill having many sceptics, deemed a buffoon & needing to journey to his own sense of worth. Once it becomes apparent he is up to the plate as a viewer on the "right side" of history it becomes a very much good feel type movie.

22. Hot Fuzz (2007)

R | 121 min | Action, Comedy, Mystery

81 Metascore

A skilled London police officer is transferred to a small town with a dark secret.

Director: Edgar Wright | Stars: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Martin Freeman, Bill Nighy

Votes: 430,180 | Gross: $23.64M

This is a very much a family movie. It's funny for all ages, it's easy to follow and it's clean.

The plot is an inquisitive murder mystery into why are people from a welsh village disappearing. The movie has it's fair share of catch phrases and it slowly reveals itself.

Similar movies with same actors and directors include: Everything is Land's End. Shaun Of Dead.

23. The Machinist (2004)

R | 101 min | Drama, Thriller

61 Metascore

An industrial worker who hasn't slept in a year begins to doubt his own sanity.

Director: Brad Anderson | Stars: Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Aitana Sánchez-Gijón, John Sharian

Votes: 332,246 | Gross: $1.08M

This movie focuses on insomnia. It has an extremely paranoid character at the helm (and for good reason). This character makes for a very jumpy film, he isn't stable in some real sense.

The movie is very action packed. Christian Bale does a good job in this one, his acting was a big factor in including it, in the list.

24. The Sinner (2017– )

TV-14 | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Anthology series that examines how and why ordinary people commit brutal crimes.

Stars: Bill Pullman, Dohn Norwood, Jessica Biel, Christopher Abbott

Votes: 60,102

This series involves looking into the motives and logical rational for breaking the law. Each series focuses on one crime (usually in the first 15 minutes of the first episode). Then witnesses and suspects are cross examined.

A lot of the content is built around suspense and mystery as information is slowly unrevealed. It's a bit soap like in terms of the amount of human interaction and conversations, but unlike a soap the conversations are more focused and are far less mundane.

I would suggest that if you want a bit more action. You may find the film series a bit too slow. I couldn't imagine watching this series twice because once you have seen the concluding episode there isn't much else to see.

I would also suggest the second series wasn't as enjoyable as the first. There was just more depth to the first series. It was full of twists and turns and it did a great job of showing to the audience without revealing. A lot of the information was discovered by the characters as the story progressed. There were many gaps which were slowly filled in for the viewer.

The TV series was only going to be one series based upon a specific book. I did feel the second series was a bit more forced, which it kind of was because the first series was so successful.

The only character which remained was the main character detective Harry Ambrose. Who does a decent job at playing his part.



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