Lists are great. They inspire discussion, create arguments, and tend to spiral off into fun new lists. When you do a list about the “BEST” of anything it goes from being fun to becoming a hotbed for arguments. There’s no such thing as a definitive list but I’ve decided to pull from my rather extensive life of film watching and put it to good use.
This is not the “film critic’s top 100” list. There’s no guarantee Citizen Kane or The Bicycle Thief will be in the top echelon or even on the list. This is the 100 movies I would put my name on as my top 100. If I died tomorrow this would represent the 100 films I find most vital, special, or ones that bonded to whatever it is that makes me me. I’m not including documentaries, though that might make for a nice supplemental list.
The first 80 will be in no particular order. The last 20 will be in very particular order. One a day, you have my word.
#33 – Wall Street
Why is it here:
Note: Remember that the first 80 are in no particular order.
Platoon put Oliver Stone on the map and created a standard for war movies but it’s Wall Street that reigns supreme as both a narrative and analogy for the world at the time. Filled with great moments and a deserved Oscar-winning performance, it’s a perfect blend of polish and meat. In many ways it’s a spyglass into the Reagan era of America, showcasing the virtues and evils of the time as charlie Sheen’s Bud Fox goes from idealistic go-getter to soiled waste product of greed. And Michael Douglas and his Gordon Gekko may have become an 80’s icon in the same way John Rambo was but there’s a reason this film became such a benchmark. It’s loaded to the gills with value and I cannot watch a minute of it without watching all of it.
Moments to savor:
The use of This Must Be The Place, by the Talking Heads. Bud meets Gordon for the first time. The naked girl in the apartment. Martin Sheen offers fatherly advice. Stamp vs. Douglas. John C. McGinley, always Marvin the Fuckin’ Mindreader to me after this. The way the firm turns on Bud. Hannah at her peak. Sean Young, playing a colossal bitch.
Very very high.
from 1988 – 1992 myself and best bud Sean Fahey would play Monopoly many times a week in the guise of Gordon Gekko and Bud Fox, keeping stats and bragging rights to the point where Monopoly almost became a role-playing game. It makes us either certifiably insane or the sharpest kids on the block. The jury is still out on me, but Sean’s become quite a success.