Recommendations required - top ten films (no wait - come back!)

griftert

Well-known member
I've watched Planes, Trains and Automobiles and Cool Runnings more times than I can remember so I think I should include one of those two. The former probably edges it. Probably the best John Hughes film, the only one to broach something dark and kind of messed up, John Candy's character being basically a homeless guy who drifts from town to town selling curtain rings after his wife dies and he gets this glimpse into this rich guys life.

I tend towards just thinking everything is reactionary nowadays, not a healthy worldview probably
 

griftert

Well-known member
Really my horror list would basially just be Argento and Carpenter all the way. Can't really mess with either tbh.

I dunno what to tell you if you can't appreciate some of the amazing shots in Tarkovsky, the famous tracking shots are always sensational. I have the impression that they would have much greater impact on a big screen where your eye can take in much more detail and there is more of a sense of the art of the image itself. Cinematography really plays a part in what really makes a film for me and Tarkovsky basically has an amazing eye for beautiful shots.
 

muser

Well-known member
starship troopers is a great example of people (whether film buffs or not) think is terrible or great. I always loved it and saw it as kind of stylised cheesiness, to be taken with a pinch of salt, it's not taking itself to seriously.

I chose films based on what I would be happy to watch at any time if it was suggested, and also films i have watched alot of in the past. I think any other criteria is going in to a territory of general what you think should be the "top ten films" and not what your top ten films are, not trying to be a list nazi or anything
 
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rubberdingyrapids

Well-known member
starship troopers is great but ive never quite trusted those who champion it as being an all out satire. i think verhoeven was genuinely trying to make a top gun kind of movie, but trying (and failing, really - i think its bad satire, but totally enjoyable as a brilliantly/impeccably executed stupid film) to be clever, so the satire is so subtle that its never really all that clear - it ends up looking just like any other violent gung ho american sci fi. unless you are a high minded (and probably european) filmgoer that is, in which case it appears like a clever, sly send up of old action movie/sci fi/patriotism tropes. its all in the eye of the viewer with that film.

i know the writer and verhoeven have made a point of saying the film isnt pro fascist but they treaded that line between irony and chest-beating sincerity too cleverly for their own good - they were trying to make the perfect political allegory war movie, one that satisfies everyone and lends to multiple readings but i think it ended up leaning more in favour of the latter.
 
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baboon2004

Darned cockwombles.
Still not watched Total Recall, but kinda surprised that it hasn't popped up yet in anyone's ten (as far as I've noticed, anyway) - it's in the same category as Jacob's Ladder as a film halfway between cult and populist (at least in terms of the profile of director and stars) that lots of people seem to love
 

mistersloane

heavy heavy monster sound
Verhoeven's run of films from RoboCop to Black Books is unparalled. I havent seen, dont even know if it's avaialable to see his new thing, a kinda crowd-sourced and written film which looks interesting and I'm sure is equally as good :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entertainment_Experience

Rich if you havent seen Showgirls, you must, tonight. It's a soap opera on amphetamines, and is very, very funny in a very, very wrong way.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
"Rich if you havent seen Showgirls, you must, tonight. It's a soap opera on amphetamines, and is very, very funny in a very, very wrong way."
I really do need to see it.
Spetters and The Fourth Man (especially Spetters) are pretty great too.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spetters

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Fourth_Man_(1983_film)

"Without a blatant display of humor, it is impossible to create a parody of extremism or fundamentalism that someone won't mistake for the real thing."
But there are pretty blatant displays of humour aren't there? For example the kids stamping on the bugs here


Or how could anyone think that this is serious?

 

IdleRich

IdleRich
Well satire has to walk a fine line I guess to avoid heavy-handedness... and sometimes ambiguity has its place. You can certainly watch (and probably enjoy) Starship Troopers as a straight up if slightly over-the-top and camp, gung-ho space thriller that celebrates human kind's victory over some nasty bugs - but I don't think that's how it's intended to be seen.
 

muser

Well-known member
personally I think the closest Starship Troopers comes to actual satire is to the same extent Scream was a satire of horror, the difference between the two was that Scream clearly tried to make it obvious it was a form of satire in the dialogue whilst keeping to most of the common 90's horror constructs in a totally un-satirical way. Starship Troopers amped everything to full scale cheesy ridiculousness but gives no obvious signs to the audience at any point that this was a conscious decision. Haven't watched either movies for a long time now so might be talking nonsense.
 

rubberdingyrapids

Well-known member
OTM^^^

PV's best films for me: katie tippel, the 4th man, turkish delight, soldier of orange, spetters, robocop.

robocop is the best of the hollywood era; basic instinct is now weirdly sort of underrated.

total recall is great, but it basically just becomes a standard action shoot em up in the ending. all the subtext vanishes. it does have some of the all time best arnie lines though. and his female co-star is super hot.

showgirls and starship troopers are kind of in their own category. smug satire for elitists. confusingly OTT for everyone else.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
"personally I think the closest Starship Troopers comes to actual satire is to the same extent Scream was a satire of horror"
But to what extent is that?

basic instinct is now weirdly sort of underrated.
Agreed. At least I think I do. As others have said about other things, it's a long time since I've seen it.
 

rubberdingyrapids

Well-known member
starship troopers IS funny. but its done with such a tightly/grimly clenched jaw. and its not actually always funny where it most counts - been ages since i saw it but iirc the satirical elements become lessened as the film goes on, and it starts to seem more and more straighter as it progresses. scream was much more po-mo and self conscious about it.

PV was basically him making a modern propaganda film with the added disclaimer that it was all satirical, but then he forgot to let anyone know about it, so ended up making a modern propaganda film anyway. i suppose it was always going to be hard to make a more leftist film considering the source novel.
 
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IdleRich

IdleRich
I dunno, I remember the bit at the end when Doogie Howser reads the big alien's mind and says "It's scared" and all the army guys cheer. In the cinema when I saw it everyone laughed out loud at that bit because it was an unexpected piece of nasty triumphalism that suggested the the good guys maybe weren't the good guys.
 

Mr. Tea

Shub-Niggurath, Please
total recall is great, but it basically just becomes a standard action shoot em up in the ending. all the subtext vanishes. it does have some of the all time best arnie lines though. and his female co-star is super hot.

I'm trying to find the article I read a while ago that explained that everything we see after Quaid goes into the memory machine is happening purely inside his head - the false memories of his supposed past life, his realization that he's the tool of a sinister conspiracy, the chases and shoot-outs, right up to the ultra-triumphant ending where he kills the bad guy, frees the oppressed, gets the girl and quite literally saves the planet. Whereas in reality, the people operating the machine are desperately trying to bring him back while he's presumably reduced to a drooling lobotomee.

It certainly casts the film in a rather different light. But I'm glad to see Verhoeven getting some love on here. I remember nomadologist waxing lyrical about Showgirls once, worst-sex-scene-ever and all.

Edit: agreed Robocop is the best one though, love that film so much.
 
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craner

Beast of Burden
I found it upsetting too. Also, the scene when Robocop almost gets blasted to bits in the underground car park brought me to the edge of tears twice. Both these films are bleak, affecting satires, which I always thought was obvious, even glaring.
 

rubberdingyrapids

Well-known member
robocop is so brilliant. kinda weird that verhoeven is getting remakes of both that and starship troopers. (total recall has already been done - still not seen the new version). verhoeven does/says interesting things with sex and violence - i imagine thats the main thing the remakes will lack.
 

IdleRich

IdleRich
I knew they were doing Robocop and had done TR but had no idea about Starship Troopers. Was it that popular? Why are they doing it? I haven't seen any of the remakes, not for any ideological reason, just haven't got round to it. Strange that they're all being done within a couple of years of each other. Would be interesting to watch all three originals and then the remakes. Maybe.
 

mistersloane

heavy heavy monster sound
The Total Recall remake is fine, but humourless, and thus pointless, and could easily have not been called Total Recall and people would have just said "oh the storyline's a bit like Total Recall". I think it suffered badly from being a "remake".

Am totally over remakes though.

Mind you, I was by the time Van Sant did Psycho.
 
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