10 Best Films of All Time: Emily Nighman

2. Psycho (1966)

Directed by ‘Master of Suspense’ Alfred Hitchcock, Psycho is a bone-chilling thriller that has become a cultural icon and is often regarded as one of the best horror films ever made. When Marion Crane (Janet Leigh) steals money from her workplace and goes on the run, she checks into an isolated motel managed by Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins), a disturbed man who says he lives with his mother. With its iconic shower scene, shocking twists, and brilliant narrative pacing, the film revolutionized the horror genre.

Compared to many of the auteur’s other films at the time, Psycho delivers a B-horror aesthetic with low-budget production design, black-and-white cinematography, and gory slasher themes. Hitchcock’s brilliance, however, really shines through his innovative camera angles and editing techniques, as well as the horrific score and visuals found in the famous shower scene, which have made an impressively lasting impact on popular culture.

The tense film navigates themes of voyeurism and psychosis through a truly suspenseful narrative with a particularly chilling performance by Perkins. Psycho has been referenced and parodied dozens of times since its release, and despite mixed reviews initially, it is now considered an enduring classic, with Martin Scorsese naming it one of the scariest films in history and Variety naming it the #1 greatest film of all time in 2022.

Recommended for you: Top 10 Alfred Hitchcock Films

1. The Godfather (1972)

The Godfather Review

If one film does it all, it is Francis Ford Coppola’s monumental work, The Godfather.

Just shy of three hours, the 1972 epic delivers crime, action, suspense, romance, and drama with a masterful screenplay co-written with author Mario Puzo. The film follows the Corleone family, a powerful mafia clan in New York City, led by the patriarch and boss, Don Vito (Marlon Brando). The story focuses on the journey of the youngest son, Michael Corleone (Al Pacino), as he tries to make a life for himself apart from the family business. Beyond incredible performances by veteran actor Brando and relative newcomer Pacino, the film boasts an all-star cast including James Caan as Sonny, the eldest son, Robert Duvall as Tom, the family’s consigliere, and Diane Keaton as Michael’s wife Kay.

The film’s enduring legacy is a result of its masterful direction and exceptional storytelling, immersing viewers into the Corleone family’s complex world and exploring themes of power, loyalty, and morality. Coppola’s style balances intimate moments between characters with grand operatic sequences, such as the famous baptism scene with its striking contrast between religion and virtue, and corruption and violence. Its examination of the human condition through the dramatic, intriguing world of organized crime continues to resonate with audiences, and the film has served as inspiration for dozens of films and television programmes since. It was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, winning three for Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Actor for Brando.

The Godfather is one of the most frequently quoted films in history and its impact on the film industry is undeniable with it appearing on numerous lists of the best films ever made, including the top of this one.

Pages: 1 2 3 4


Leave a Comment