What 'classic' film do you think everyone should see?


Oh gosh, But I’m A Cheerleader. I can’t decide if it’s a good movie or not. I don’t know if I like it or not.
I think it’s definitely worth watching though and so I’d absolutely second it either way, haha.


Clue and Young Frankenstein are such good suggestions. I don’t want to live in a world where they are not considered classics.


“La Haine” by Mathieu Kassovitz is one of my favorite movies. It follows three teens in the aftermath of a police beating and the subsequent riot within a Paris housing project. It’s a movie that seems to always be relevant at anytime or place.

Last I checked it’s available on Amazon Prime video (free with prime sub) or on Filmstruck.


Bring It On is absolutely classic cinema and I will die on this hill if I have to.

@VulpesAbsurda If we’re going to talk about Wes Anderson movies I’m going to add The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou to the list for sure.


Who Framed Roger Rabbit! It’s an achievement in both technique and narrative.


I would recommend trying Akira. The story gets a little messy in the 2nd half, but it’s still worth seeing. The soundtrack is fantastic, and fits well for the setting. It’s also one of the best looking animated movies I’ve seen, including how fluid the animation is on its own.


Hey, glad you made this thread. For various reasons I’ve been moving away from games and back toward film and literature as my preferred relax media. I got a Filmstruck membership to check out some classics; it’s the streaming service Criterion left Hulu to start.

First of all, Letterboxd is a neat website full of film nerds that you can browse to find neat recommendations from people, and organize your own viewing. It’s not a super popular website but it deserves to be. Here’s my profile. I just started using it to keep a record of the movies I liked on Filmstruck and for Halloween watches.

Second of all, you’re definitely right about those ‘top of all time’ lists. They often focus on American movies and they’re littered with stuff that is only academically interesting and has not stood the test of time. Though, sometimes there are some true gems on there. Speaking of:

Seven Samurai is the classic film that I would recommend everyone watch. It’s in black and white. It’s LONG AS FUCK. It’s that kind of movie y’all probably see and say “hmm, maybe not tonight”. It inspired a bunch of newer stuff and is inspired by a bunch of stuff older than it, and I’m about to be pretty obnoxious about it.

Seven Samurai offers a staggering amount of the things that, in my opinion, can make a great film:

  • Escapism to a different time and place
  • Romance
  • An incredibly simple plot that lets the complexities of the characters work the story
  • Battle scenes that are really raw and will leave you wondering how they pulled them off
  • Cool people doing cool things
  • Real, warm friendship
  • Subverting the badass ronin samurai trope before it was even fully developed
  • Humor, it’s funny and charming as hell
  • In spite of being extremely long, the pace will make you feel like it’s short. It also has an intermission that allows it to be split into two viewing sessions perfectly.

All right, I’ll hit this thread up with more suggestions as I think of them, but that’s my big one. Also @robowitch could I know a little bit about the movies you already like? I know the thread’s about what everyone should see regardless of preference, but I’m just interested :slight_smile:


Yes absolutely agree that this movie was such a breakthrough in technique and scripting. Also a superb cast as well!!


Kurosawa is one of those directors who has made so many good movies that it’s hard to recommend a single film. Rashomon is probably the best introduction to his style and features Toshiro Mifune acting his ass off–and, at 1.5 hours, is positively breezy compared to the 3.5 hours of Seven Samurai. Stray Dog, a sort-of buddy-cop film about a rookie officer tracking down his stolen police-issue pistol, is my go-to for tense, underplayed action. My favorite Kurosawa, though, is IkiruTo Live–an emotionally wrought story about a mid-level government functionary who finds out he only has a few months to live and has to decide how to make those last months matter.

Basically all the big Kurosawa films are available through Criterion and, I find, many libraries and library-loan-networks.

Ikiru, incidentally, pairs well with Alec Guiness’ morbid comedy Last Holiday, a movie with the same basic conceit–except where the protagonist of Ikiru devotes himself to making a difference, Guiness’ character decides to take the first real vacation of his life.


This sounds like a joke answer but I genuinely think people should watch The Room. It’s a good example of just how much nuance and attention to detail is required to make a good film, and how fine the line is between an emotionally impactful movie and a cringey eye-roll worthy one.

The original All Quiet on the Western Front from 1930 holds up shockingly well and it’s cool to see how it created the template that countless other war movies would use over the next 80+ years.

I firmly believe Children of Men is one of the most essential Dystopian films ever made and has cemented itself as an all time favorite.

Twelve Angry Men (1957) is a film with such a tight focus and excellent characterization. All set in one room, it’s a tense, claustrophobic, enthralling movie.


I can’t believe I forgot Twelve Angry Men! Seconding this recommendation on the grounds that it’s wonderfully done. (And also The Room, because yes, definitely watch that.)


For the last few years, I’ve found that Letterboxd is a really cool site for keeping track of what I have seen. I think it’s more functional than IMDB and doesn’t look like it was designed in 2006 haha. So here’s my letterboxd page, with things i’ve rated highest at the top, and i’m just gonna talk a little bit about the first couple I see here that really interest me. https://letterboxd.com/alicoffee/films/ratings/by/entry-rating/

Clue (1985) (dir. Jonathan Lynn):
Just an astonishingly funny movie. It’s just 90 minutes of really great actors delivering wordplay on wordplay on wordplay, doing verbal gymnastics – and for Tim Curry, physical gymnastics – that are hilarious even after I’ve seen it 4 or 5 times.

M (1931) (dir. Fritz Lang):
When recommending a lot of older movies, I feel the need to tell people “well adjust your expectations, the style was very different back then.” While I think that’s true for M, even the first time I watched it, I was astonished at how ahead of its time it feels. If’s Lang’s first sound film, and it’s just stunning. Lang’s visual talents were well established in the decade prior, but he moves into this new mode and uses it deliver such a powerful story. It’s a thriller about how fear can control a society and about mob justice and justice in a broader sense. Certain themes in M really resonate today when you think about the fact that Lang had to flee Germany – where this was produced – just a few years later.

A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) (dir. Elia Kazan):
For all his personal shortcomings, Kazan was really fucking good at what he did. Tennessee Williams’ script is phenomenal and Kazan brings it from the stage to the screen with remarkable electricity. The movie takes place on hot summer days, and everything about just makes you really feel that sweltering heat. There’s almost a haze in the air through the whole thing. The actors are all putting in top notch performances too and tying that heat in with a thick sexual tension that is remarkable for its era.

Do The Right Thing (1989) (dir. Spike Lee):
Upsettingly, Do The Right Thing is more relevant now than it was then. Or at least equally relevant. One day on one block in Brooklyn, you see so many different conflicts among the people there: white v. black, african-american v. immigrant, young v. old, and many others, but it culminates in black man v. cop and you can imagine how that goes. Knowing the ending doesn’t spoil you on anything though. The point of the film is just to see what life is like on this block, and see how vibrant all these lives are.


“Donny Darko”. But no way in hell I can explain why.


peaks head in

Since Kurosawa has already bed recommended I’m going to go slightly more obscure and recommend both Sword of Doom and Three Outlaw Samurai. Both are kind of more nihilistic and you can see Sword of Doom laying the groundwork for future more violent chambara films.


I Am Love, directed by Luca Guadagnino. It’s a film essentially about a family, and from the point of view of the mother, played by Tilda Swinton. She portrays a Russian woman who married an Italian man years ago, but falls in love with her son’s business partner, a chef.

The reasons I recommend it are honestly so numerous and I don’t wanna go on too much; one of the greatest things about it is the way that it handles the idea of love; particularly the mother’s love for her daughter, who features in a great subplot. It also uses ellipsis, one of my favourite techniques, in a way that reminds me of the Japanese director Yasujirō Ozu, whose work I would also encourage a look at.

The cinematography is beautiful and carries some brilliant symbolism, and the soundtrack (particularly in the final scene, trust me) is incredible. It’s available on DVD in the foreign films section in most HMVs I’ve been to, and also on Netflix and Amazon Video.


Without a doubt, I’d have to say classic 1996 action film The Rock, starring Nic Cage and Sean Connery is a must watch.
Its got memorable action scenes, a weird connection to the Iraq War, and Nicholas Cage being, well, Nicholas Cage. Its the only Michael Bay film I will ever wholeheartedly recommend anyone watch. And to top it all off, its got a sick score by Hans Zimmer (who wasn’t scoring seemingly every blockbuster at that point) and Harry Gregson-Williams (Who’s work you may have heard in the Metal Gear franchise)


The music in that film straight up sounds like Metal Gear Solid 2 at times and it RULES


For my money, the soundtrack is one of the best things about that film. It avoids the problem of trying to imagine what the future will sound of by rooting itself firmly in the past. It’s a completely natural fit and doesn’t show any sign of becoming dated or feeling anachronistic.

I’m not great at coming up with these sorts of things off the top of my head. Alien and Blade Runner are both excellent (I’m afraid I have to contradict @bureaukat and say that the director’s cut is superior, first and foremost because Ford’s disdain for the narration is so distractingly evident in his delivery). Besides them, I think 2001: A Space Odyssey is pretty essential. It’s long and slow and often non-verbal, but it’s such a bold artistic statement. I really think it’s an incredible work of cinema. Just don’t watch it drowsy - you’ll definitely doze off sooner or later.

A more recent suggestion would be There Will be Blood. I’m not really sure how to justify its inclusion - I’m no film critic - other than to say that it feels so incredibly confident, like the work of people who have mastered their respective crafts.

And finally, another recent-ish choice would be A Serious Man. It’s a film that asks questions in a way that I feel unusually able to engage with. I’m not sure whether that’s a good general criterion - perhaps it’s just me - but I also think it’s excellently made and very good at expressing the protagonist’s quiet dismay, too.



A few of the jokes certainly haven’t aged well, but for the most part it holds up. And for what it’s worth, the number of problematic jokes is a lot lower than it could have been.


everyone should watch spy kids and no other movie

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