Auto-Focus: Our Runners-Up

July 14, 2018 | Posted by Guest Reviewer | FILM | 0 Comments |

"What? No Shawshank Redemption? You idiots!"

Settle down folks. Our Top 20 list was drawn with blood, sweat and tears. We are not going to ‘out’ ourselves, except to say that we regard ourselves as disinterested, more qualified than the Archibald Trustees, and more cohesive than the Nobel Committee. We can’t hope to please everyone by our list (by definition, exclusionary).

Our runners-up list was a lot longer, and friendlier (almost unanimous, with some spectacular exceptions, viz., Lawrence of Arabia):

Ace in the Hole (Directed by Billy Wilder) (1951)

All About Eve (Directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz) (1950)

All the President’s Men (Directed by Alan J. Pakula) (1976)

The Apartment (Directed by Billy Wilder) (1960)

Atlantic City (Directed by Louis Malle) (1981)

Bicycle Thieves (Directed by Vittorio De Sica) (1948)

Blow Up (Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni) (1966)

The Boys in the Band (Directed by William Friedkin) (1970)

Cabaret (Directed by Bob Fosse) (1972)

Chinatown (Directed by Roman Polanski) (1974)

Day For Night (Directed by François Truffaut) (1973)

Dead Man (Directed by Jim Jarmusch) (1996)

The Deer Hunter (Directed by Michael Cimino) (1978)

The Dinner Game (Directed by Francis Veber) (1998)

The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (Directed by Luis Buñuel) (1972)

Dracula (Directed by Tod Browning) (1931)

Dr. Strangelove or: How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (Directed by Stanley Kubrick) (1964)

Elmer Gantry (Directed by Richard Brooks) (1960)

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (Directed by Michel Gondry) (2004)

Five Easy Pieces (Directed by Bob Rafelson) (1970)

The French Connection (Directed by William Friedkin) (1971)

The Godfather II (Directed by Francis Ford Coppola) (1974)

Goodfellas (Directed by Martin Scorsese) (1990)

Heavenly Creatures (Directed by Peter Jackson) (1994)

Hud (Directed by Martin Ritt) (1963)

The Hustler (Directed by Robert Rossen) (1961)

It Happened One Night (Directed by Frank Capra) (1934)

Lawrence of Arabia (Directed by David Lean) (1962)

The Leopard (Directed by Luchino Visconti) (1963)

Lolita (Directed by Stanley Kubrick) (1962)

Lost Horizon (Directed by Frank Capra) (1937)

The Lost Weekend (Directed by Billy Wilder) (1945)

Love Serenade (Directed by Shirley Barrett) (1996)

A Man For All Seasons (Directed by Fred Zinnemann) (1966)

Midnight Cowboy (Directed by John Schlesinger) (1969)

Network (Directed by Sidney Lumet) (1976)

Never Let Me Go (Directed by Mark Romanek) (2010)

Odd Man Out (Directed by Carol Reed) (1947)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (Directed by Milos Forman) (1975)

Out of the Past (Directed by Jacques Tourneur) (1947)

Paths of Glory (Directed by Stanley Kubrick) (1957)

Primary Colors (Directed by Mike Nicholls) (1998)

Quo Vadis, Aida? (Directed by Jasmila Zbanic) (2020)

Reservoir Dogs (Directed by Quentin Tarantino) (1991)

Reversal of Fortune (Directed by Barbet Schroeder) (1990)

The Searchers (Directed by John Ford) (1956)

The Seventh Seal (Directed by Ingmar Bergman) (1957)

Shane (Directed by George Stevens) (1953)

Silent Running (Directed by Douglas Trumbull) (1971)

Singin’ in the Rain (Directed by Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen) (1952)

The Sorrow and the Pity (Directed by Marcel Ophüls) (1969)

The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (Directed by Martin Ritt) (1965)

The Sweet Hereafter (Directed by Atom Egoyan) (1997)

To Kill a Mockingbird (Directed by Robert Mulligan) (1962)

Twelve Angry Men (Directed by Sidney Lumet) (1957)

Under the Volcano (Directed by John Huston) (1984)

The Wages of Fear (Directed by H.G. Clouzot) (1953)

Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? (Directed by Robert Aldrich) (1962)

Wings of Desire (Directed by Wim Wenders) (1988)

The Young Poisoner’s Handbook (Directed by Ben Ross) (1995)


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