Empire have asked their readers to vote for their five favourite films – in order! That’s a pretty big ask for me, as I can easily say that Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is my favourite, but the other four? And in order? Eek! They’re compiling a list of the 301 greatest movies of all time and I can’t help but feel that films which are significant to film history should be in there. Then my boyfriend argued that I should just include the films that I enjoyed the most. But then, should that be my most-watched films …
… or just generally what I consider my favourites? I consulted my FlickChart favourites and managed to reduce my ‘favourites’ to the following
Then I reconsulted Empire’s poll and read:
“It’s been five years since we last polled you to establish the Greatest Films of All Time. In the meantime, great new movies have been released and many of you have no doubt been itching to correct injustices or oversights you spotted last time around. Well, now’s your chance. Vote for five films below that you think represent the very best of cinema, and ensure that your best-loved movies make it into the rankings for our 301st issue. Will The Godfather hang on to the top spot? Will Star Wars still place highly with J.J. Abrams preparing a new instalment? Can newcomers like Gravity or 12 Years A Slave make their mark? It’s all in your hands, so get voting below!”
That’s two completely different lists! The previously mentioned films are my ‘best-loved’ but the films that represent the very best of cinema? I had to rethink. Of course, Eternal Sunshine is going to the top of any ‘greatest’ list that I submit but I wanted to reflect a range of genres. With Eternal Sunshine representing romance, I also wanted to include Hitchcock somewhere, so included Psycho as an influential horror, I wanted to include indies and the Miramax revolution, so went for Reservoir Dogs (the company was dubbed ‘the house that Quentin built’ after all), I thought Se7en was an incredible thriller for the continued mystery and refraining from a final reveal and for sci-fi I went with Alien. The boyfriend thought that genre was a tie between Alien and Blade Runner, a film that I wasn’t particularly keen on. Speaking of which, his ‘favourite five’ was
When I wrote up this blog post the morning after our discussion, he was very quickly able to cite his 6-10 (Die Hard, Aliens, Big Fish, Hugo and Stardust) and after I said I couldn’t handle that kind of pressure (!) he reeled off 11-15 (New Police Story, The Raid, Battle Royale, Ong Bak and Old Boy)! There are a lot of very good shouts in his top 15 (Hugo, New Police Story, Battle Royale, Old Boy, anything by Wes Anderson) and after a few minutes I picked my own 6-10 – the films I would pick with a gun held to my head. I wouldn’t commit to these in a laminated list or anything (kudos to anyone who gets that reference!)
10+ gets difficult but Almost Famous, The Dark Knight, Fargo and The Wizard of Oz would definitely need to be in there somewhere…
After I rounded out my top ten, I told my mum and brother about the conversation and at first they laughed about my difficulty with committing to favourite films. Then they wanted to get in on the act! After many exasperated sighs and last minute recollections, they picked their own top tens:
Just after I scheduled this post, my dad came home (I wrote this from the comfort of my parents’ house), so in the interest of featuring the entire Farley family: Midnight Express, Quadrophenia, The Sea of Love, Some Like it Hot and Brassed Off. What do you reckon to our rather eclectic tastes?
What five films would you submit? And how long did it take you to reach that decision?