The Top 100: Part 17 (#20-16)

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20.

The Master (2012)

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson (3rd)

Paul Thomas Anderson is attracted to instability and Freddie Quell (Joaquin Phoenix) and Lancaster Dodd (Philip Seymour Hoffman) are two extremely nuanced, unstable characters in this bizarrely crafted world. “The Master” features two of my all-time favorite performances in one film, brought to life by Anderson’s brilliant character writing. It’s such a fascinating and aesthetically gripping film. Truly a unique experience. One of incredible depth. Absolutely a masterpiece.

19.

Midnight Cowboy (1969)

Director: John Schlesinger (1st)

Schlesinger’s “Midnight Cowboy” is all over the place thematically, but that’s the beauty of this story and film. Jon Voight as the oddball Cowboy traveling to the big city, alongside my favorite Dustin Hoffman performance, makes this experience so bizarre and special. The way each plot point is framed and presented is different and no aspect of this film is the same. It’s absolutely brilliant.

18.

Chinatown (1974)

Director: Roman Polanski (4th)

The quintessential noir genre film. The craft from Polanski is essentially flawless. Showing the showyness and charm of Hollywood while hiding the shady underbelly of crime and deceit. The blasting trumpet score matches the tone of the narrative while Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway deliver world-class performance in unbelievably dirty roles. A must-watch for anyone interested in the art of storytelling.

17.

The Shining (1980)

Director: Stanley Kubrick (3rd)

Prepare to read more about Stanley Kubrick as this list gets down to the end – The Shining is the most meticulously detailed, mind-bending film in existence. No part of the frame is without Kubrick’s fingerprints making each shot of the film packed with story elements and narrative. It’s stunning the way Kubrick used every possible space to tell his story. And, I didn’t even mentioned the all-time great lead performance from Jack Nicholson.

16.

Irreversible (2002)

Director: Gaspar Noé

Noé’s “Irreversible” is an experience that immediately sucks you into this broken world that is slowly piecing itself back together. Noe has an eye for unconventional narrative storytelling and Irreversible is arguably the best example in film history of manipulating story structure to effectively tell a narrative in greater detail. It’s unbelievably gratifying watching this film play out because the experience is genuinely numbing. There’s moments in this film that leave you utterly speechless. Masterpiece.

Part 16 (Last)|Part 18 (Next)


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