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Added by Nonfictionguy on 10 Dec 2008 09:51
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Movies you should watch before you die

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People who added this item 232 Average listal rating (128 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.6
Grand Hotel (1932)
A lot has changed since 1932, when this film was first released. After watching this movie I realise that not all the changes in film making since then have been for the better.

A few of the stars from this movie made such an impact that they are still known today, such as Greta Garbomay and Joan Crawford. But It isn't the stars, cinematography or acting that will win you over. There is no CGI, no explosions here, what this film does have in heaps is a sense of realism. There is a gritty edge to the story that you don't expect from a movie of this era. Plots cross over and the ending is superb and quite unexpected, leaving you wanting much more.

The Grand Hotel isn't without its flaws, its dated, and there are stereotypes a plenty here, from the evil rich boss, to the thief with a heart of gold. But despite that the movie remains wonderfully unexpected at times. You get a sense that you are watching just a few visitors to a 'grand hotel', who arrive with a past and whose stories will continue after their stay. If ever there was movie made for a number of sequels, this is it. Thankfully no one has ever dared and as a result the movies magic remains (take note George Lucas!).

Watch it late at night, expect a predictable romatic drama and be very pleasantly surprised! A 1932 best picture Oscar award winner for a reason!
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People who added this item 4461 Average listal rating (2907 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 8
Jaws (1975)
Today Great White Sharks are on the endangered species list. We now know that even the humble toaster in your kitchen is far more dangerous to mankind, than these wondrous creatures, which have changed so little since prehistoric times. But in 1975 the world was a different place and for anyone watching this movie the sea quickly became a fearful place with sharks the hidden killer of the deep.

‘Jaws’ tells the story of the Island town of Amity and its cheerful inhabitants, most of which rely heavily on the seasonal tourist trade and are hesitant to acknowledge anything that may tarnish the islands idyllic reputation. When a body is washed ashore, its down to Police Chief Brody (Roy Scheider) to do his duty to serve and protect, even if he does hate the water!

What makes this movie so special is that, just like its victims, you rarely see the killer shark. John Williams' memorable score also makes this film stand out, that ‘da dum, da dum’ gives you goosebumps when you hear it and really enhances the sense of impending terror. The absence of those notes can also lull you into relaxing at precisely the wrong moment, making you jump, a trick repeated by many subsequent horror movies. But this movie isn’t just about a single killer shark or the soundtrack, it’s also about Chief Brody and the men he brings in to hunt down the Great White Shark. Spoilt rich kid and shark expert Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss) is the complete opposite of the Old Seadog and Survivor of an infamous shark attack Quint (Robert Shaw), one appreciates sharks, the other prefers them dead! Together the three disparate men bond, in a very masculine way, before finally chasing after and attempting to capture and kill the very smart beast.

Given the high standards of film making and tension, the end of this movie can be a little disappointing, with us seeing far too much of the killer shark and the obviously animatronic head (good for its time). But the pleasure that is the original Jaws movie will stay with you for quite some time.

This is a wonderful movie, just don’t watch it before going into the water!
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People who added this item 2861 Average listal rating (1837 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.7
Death as a sentient entity is a concept that has existed in many societies since the beginning of history. In English, death is often given the name the "Grim Reaper", it is also given the name of the "Angel of Death" stemming from the Bible. In some cases, the Grim Reaper is able to actually cause the victim's death, leading to tales that he (she in some countries) can be bribed, tricked, or outwitted in order to retain one's life. This movie runs with that idea and when creates a wonderful roller-coaster of a ride, as we watch a group of teenagers being stalked by the Grim Reaper, as death comes calling for those he/she missed.

This movie is aimed squarely at teenagers and is rated 15 accordingly. But for anyone 15-20 years old who wants a movie to make them just, this movie will fit the bill perfectly.

Why do I rate this movie so highly? This movie ticked all my boxes when it was first released. I was the characters age, I had premonitions, I had escaped death in a similar manner and I had read enough fables and seen the Storyteller on TV to appreciate death as an entity.
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People who added this item 2213 Average listal rating (1373 ratings) 7.4 IMDB Rating 7.7
Run Lola Run (1998)
“Mankind, probably the most mysterious species on our planet. A mystery of open questions. Who are we? Where do we come from? Where are we going? How do we know what we believe to know? Why do we believe anything at all? Innumerable questions looking for an answer, an answer which will raise the next question and the following answer will raise a following question and so on and so forth. But in the end, isn't it always the same question and always the same answer?”

This is the narration at the start of Run Lola Run, so you know the following movie is going to be something different. As the title suggests, the action focuses on Lola and tells the story of her efforts to save her boyfriend Manny, and those that cross her path in the process. The whole story unfolds and ends within twenty minutes, the length of time Lola has to save Manny. Unsuccessful, we rewind to the start of the story and Lola has twenty minutes to try, and try again. The repetition could be boring, but slight changes to the story and the development of other characters around her keeps you riveted. Nothing is what it first seems. The dramatically different results of each attempt to save Manny and the resulting end are created by very minor changes by Lola and clearly demonstrate the butterfly effect, far better than any science lesson could. An enjoyable viewing experience and one of the best endings!

If you think you recognise the lead actor, it’s because she went on to become the love interest in the Bourne Identity/Supremacy films.
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It was 1977 when my father and I went to see the original Star Wars, it blew me away! In the following years, I slept in a Star Wars sleeping bag and filled my home with plastic toy figures of all the cast.

This movie is a true classic and changed all subsequent Sci-Fi movies, and especially their budgets, forever. In the thirty plus years that have followed, this movie has been pulled to pieces by fans, critics and experts. We now know that the tie-fighter attacks were exact copies of World War 2 footage from American bombers. In fact the whole movie is really a patchwork of the best bits of other movies, but what this different is that it works as a whole. In an age before CGI this movie blew the audience away with cutting edge effects and created Industrial Light and Magic.

This is the movie that also launched a new religion (Jedi) and made all its cast internationally well known.

May the force be with you
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People who added this item 748 Average listal rating (482 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.9
Taxi (1998)
From the writer that penned Leon and Nikita, comes a very light and enjoyable buddy movie, where even the car or rather the driving is often the star. Characters are well developed and interesting, plenty of light humour balances the chase scenes and there is even a little social commentary for the literati to pick up on. The movie is filmed in French, so it is subtitled in english, but don’t let this make you opt to watch the American remake - which is absolutely dire. This movie is a must watch for every pizza delivery boy around the world and an absolute pleasure for all the rest of us. You’ll get goose bumps every time you hail a Taxi, if you don't miss this ride!
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People who added this item 392 Average listal rating (227 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 7.8
Watch the original, not the awful American remake.
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People who added this item 2221 Average listal rating (1379 ratings) 8.7 IMDB Rating 8.9
12 Angry Men (1957)
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People who added this item 5618 Average listal rating (3631 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8.1
Donnie Darko (2001)
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People who added this item 9653 Average listal rating (5680 ratings) 7.8 IMDB Rating 8.7
The Matrix (1999)
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People who added this item 7067 Average listal rating (4551 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8.2
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People who added this item 4357 Average listal rating (2892 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 8.6
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People who added this item 5016 Average listal rating (3200 ratings) 8 IMDB Rating 8.5
Memento (2000)
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People who added this item 5246 Average listal rating (3465 ratings) 8.1 IMDB Rating 8.3
Amélie (2001)
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People who added this item 2653 Average listal rating (1620 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 8.4
Vertigo (1958)
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People who added this item 2090 Average listal rating (1301 ratings) 8.2 IMDB Rating 8.6
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People who added this item 8900 Average listal rating (5644 ratings) 8.4 IMDB Rating 8.8
Fight Club (1999)
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People who added this item 8177 Average listal rating (5232 ratings) 8.4 IMDB Rating 8.9
Pulp Fiction (1994)
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This is a list of my recommended movies, classics that are worth giving a try.

I hope you enjoy them!

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