Archive for the ‘1996’ category

The Top 100 Films of the 1990s

02/03/2016

THIS – a work in progress.  In reverse order.  For posterity.

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100. The Thin Red Line (1998, Malick)

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99. Girl, Interrupted (1999, Mangold)

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98. Pi (1998, Aronofsky)

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97. American Beauty (1999, Mendes)

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96. Zero Effect (1998, Kasdan)

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95. The Cutting Edge (1992, Glaser)

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94. Ruby in Paradise (1993, Nunez)

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93. Deconstructing Harry (1997, Allen)

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92. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998, Gilliam)

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91. Starship Troopers (1997, Verhoeven)

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90. Following (1998, Nolan)

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89. Before Sunrise (1995, Linklater)

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88. Go (1999, Liman)

Oh, Katie Holmes, how you were so ruined by the xenophobic Tom Cruise.  This is an exciting film that highlights the great Sarah Polley and William Fichtner as a triangular sales rep extraordinaire.

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87. Clueless (1995, Heckerling)

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86. Audition (1999, Miike)

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85. The Straight Story (1999, Lynch)

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84. Everyone Says I Love You (1996, Allen)

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83. A River Runs Through It (1992, Redford)

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82. Leaving Las Vegas (1995, Figgis)

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81. Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993, Allen)

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80. I Stand Alone (1998, Noe)

79. Misery (1990, Reiner)

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78. Slacker (1991, Linklater)

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77. Hideous Kinky (1998, MacKinnon)

Post Titanic Kate Winslet took risks including this film and Holy Smoke – an honorable mention in this list – and good for her.  I’ve had a crush on Kate for years, unrequited.  A sweet film with Julia (Winslet) and her two young daughters as expatriate Brits in 1972 Morocco struggling against a wayward father/spouse.

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76. To Die For (1995, Van Sant)

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75. Cape Fear (1991, Scorsese)

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74. Chungking Express (1994, Kar-wai)

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73. Crumb (1994, Zwigoff)

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72. JFK (1991, Stone)

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71. Rushmore (1998, Anderson)

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70. Saving Private Ryan (1997, Speilberg)

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69. Twelve Monkeys (1995, Gilliam)

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68. Waiting for Guffman (1996, Guest)

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67. Buffalo ’66 (1998, Gallo)

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66. The Remains of the Day (1993, Ivory)

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65. Lorenzo’s Oil (1992, Miller)

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64. Dumb and Dumber (1994, Farrelly Brothers)

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63. Mighty Aphrodite (1995, Allen)

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62. Ringu (1998, Nakata)

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61. Carlito’s Way (1993, De Palma)

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60. The Fisher King (1991, Gilliam)

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59. Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1991, Cameron)

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58. Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992, Coppola)

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57. Magnolia (1999, Anderson)

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56. Three Colors: Red (1994, Kieslowski)

55. Schindler’s List (1993, Speilberg)

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54. The Silence of the Lambs (1991, Demme)

53. Six Degrees of Separation (1993, Schepisi)

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52. Out of Sight (1998, Soderbergh)

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51. Internal Affairs (1990, Figgis)

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50. Death and the Maiden (1994, Polanski)

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49. Boogie Nights (1997, Anderson)

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48. Felicia’s Journey (1999, Egoyan)

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47. My Own Private Idaho (1991, Van Sant)

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46. Flirting With Disaster (1996, O’Russell)

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45. The Insider (1999, Mann)

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44. Welcome to the Dollhouse (1995, Solondz)

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43. The Ice Storm (1997, Lee)

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42. Grosse Pointe Blank (1997, Armitage)

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41. Affliction (1997, Schrader)

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40. Three Colors: Blue (1993, Kieslowski)

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39. The Cable Cuy (1996, Stiller)

This is ranked way lower than it should be.  I am sure the French love Jim Carrey and that is enough proof for me of his brilliance – which might be gone.

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38. Miami Blues (1990, Armitage)

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37. Fly Away Home (1996, Ballard)

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36. Fight Club (1999, Fincher)

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35. Exotica (1994, Egoyan)

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34. Kids (1995, Clark)

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33. Reservoir Dogs (1992, Tarantino)

32. The Big Lebowski (1998, Coen Bothers)

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31. The Pillow Book (1996, Greenaway)

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30. Wild at Heart (1990, Lynch)

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29. Bottle Rocket (1996, Anderson)

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28. Election (1999, Payne)

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27. The Loss of Sexual Innocence (1999, Figgis)

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26. Husbands and Wives (1992, Allen)

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25. The Player (1992, Altman)

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24. Goodfellows (1990, Scorsese)

23. The Sweet Hereafter (1997, Egoyan)

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22. Heat (1995, Mann)

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21. The Grifters (1990, Frears)

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20. Fearless (1993, Weir)

19. Crash (1996, Cronenberg)

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18. Lost Highway (1997, Lynch)

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17. Glengarry Glen Ross (1992, Mamet)

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16. Jackie Brown (1997, Tarantino)

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15. In the Company of Men (1997, LaBute)

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14. Until the End of the World (1991, Wenders)

This is where it gets to hallowed ground.  This amazing, expansive film by Wim Wenders was originally cut to 18 hours or so.  William Hurt, although an apparent asshole in real life, is great in this role of post apocalyptic 2000s.  Decidedly off tract the film shows a visual flair unseen in other Wenders’ films.

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13. Heavenly Creatures (1994, Jackson)

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12. Fargo (1996, Coen Bothers)

11. Casino (1995, Scorsese)

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10. Safe (1995, Haynes)

9. Short Cuts (1993, Altman)

8. Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992, Lynch)

7. Pulp Fiction (1994, Tarantino)

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6. Eyes Wide Shut (1999, Kubrick)

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5. The Truman Show (1998, Weir)

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4. The Spanish Prisoner (1997, Mamet)

3. Twin Peaks (pilot) (1990, Lynch)

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2. Happiness (1998, Solondz)

1. Breaking the Waves (1996, Von Trier)

Top 100 Films of the 1990s

13/02/2016

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WIP…..

Chungking Express (Wong Kar-wai, 1996)

03/07/2009

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I loved this film.  The pairing of the very related stories is fresh, hip and alive in a way completely foreign to me.  What little I know of Godard and the New Wave was in presentation here, I think.  Ironically, my parents lived in Hong Kong when this film was made and I spent a good amount of time there myself.  The film really captures the incredible energy of the place.  The movie is very sexy and so are the female leads, especially Faye Wong, playing “Faye” in the second of the two stories.  She is delightful and I won’t soon forget her jamming to The Mamas and the Papas.

As for Wong Kar-Wai?  This was also my introduction to his work.  I know very little of the guy but this film is certainly ripe with Americana.   Has he lived here?  There is an odd little food fetish theme that runs throughout that is really sweet and familiar.  Basically, this is a wonderfully sweet film in its narrative.  The handheld camera work was executed to perfection, as were the jump cuts and freeze frames.

To those of you that are sometimes reluctant to “get out of the box” in your film viewing (and when I look back at my list of favorite films, I am guilty of same) try this as an alternative.

**** 1/2  / *****

p.s. the DVD’s Tarantino intro and postscript are really cool – he has a real love for this guy

Breaking The Waves (Lars von Trier, 1996)

20/06/2009

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A profoundly moving film experience.  One of the best films I have seen in a while – the best film experience I have had since The Lives of Others.  This was my second Lars von Trier film after Dancer in the Dark which I loved as well.  This film is as close to perfection as they get – a deeply expansive narrative with so many layers, just unbelievable performances from all principles, ghostly perfectionist cinematography, impeccable editing, lovely well developed characters without an ounce of pretense but with subtle humor spread throughout, one of the best soundtracks ever complied for a film and a perfectly cathartic ending.  The film has an amazingly sustained tension and dread that one could understand why famous critics at Cannes escaped to the bathroom, devastated and in need of comforting.  This one gets you thinking.  Told in “chapters,” each section is introduced by a widescreen film “painting” with the best and most appropriate music.  Wow, maybe this guy is “the best film director in the world.”  This one misses not a beat.  Breaking the Waves is a commitment and a VERY rewarding one at that.

***** / *****