120. On the Waterfront (1954) Dir. Elia Kazan, 108 mins.
The film focuses on union violence and corruption amongst longshoremen on the waterfronts of Hoboken, New Jersey. Marlon Brando makes a huge impact as a dockworker and once promising boxer whose brother is the right hand man of a mob connected union boss.
119. Beauty and the Beast (1946) Dir. Jean Cocteau, 96 mins.
The plot of Cocteau’s film revolves around Belle’s father who is sentenced to death for picking a rose from Beast’s garden. Belle offers to go back to the Beast in her father’s place and Beast falls in love with her and proposes marriage on a nightly basis which she refuses. Belle eventually becomes more drawn to Beast, who tests her by letting her return home to her family and telling her that if she doesn’t return to him within a week, he will die of grief.
118. The Battle of Algiers (1966) Dir. Gillo Pontecorvo, 121 mins.
The bulk of the film is shot in flashback, presented as the memories of Ali (Brahim Haggiag), a leading member of the Algerian Front de Liberation Nationale (FLN), when finally captured by the French in 1957.
117. Fight Club (1999) Dir. David Fincher, 139 mins.
Edward Norton plays the unnamed protagonist, referred to as the narrator, who is discontented with his white-collar job. He forms a “fight club” with soap maker Tyler Durden, (Brad Pitt), and they are joined by men who also want to fight. The narrator becomes embroiled in a relationship with Durden and a dissolute woman, Marla Singer, (Helena Bonham Carter).
116. The Gold Rush (1925) Dir. Charles Chaplin, 96 mins.
The Tramp (Charlie Chaplin) travels to Alaska to take part in the Gold Rush, but bad weather strands him in a remote cabin with a prospector who has found a large gold deposit.
115. The Wizard of Oz (1939) Dir. Victor Fleming, 101 mins.
The Wizard of Oz stars the legendary Judy Garland as Dorothy, an innocent farm girl whisked out of her mundane earthbound existence into a land of pure imagination. Dorothy’s journey in Oz will take her through emerald forests, yellow brick roads, and creepy castles, all with the help of some unusual but earnest song-happy friends.
114. Hiroshima mon amour (1959) Dir. Alain Resnais, 90 mins.
An extramarital affair between a Japanese architect and a French film maker recalls the horrors of the atomic bomb and the prospects for world peace.
113. The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (1943) Dir. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 163 mins.
General Candy (Roger Livesey), who’s overseeing an English squad in 1943, is a veteran leader who doesn’t have the respect of the men he’s training and is considered out-of-touch with what’s needed to win the war. But it wasn’t always this way. Flashing back to his early career in the Boer War and World War I, we see a dashing young officer whose life has been shaped by three different women (all played by Deborah Kerr), and by a lasting friendship with a German soldier.
112. Ordet (1955) Dir. Carl Theodor Dreyer, 126 mins.
Danish filmmaker Carl Theodor Dreyer examines the conflict between internalised personal faith and organised religion. Dreyer sets the drama in a conservative, super-pious Danish town, where widower Morten Borgen (Henrik Malberg), the father of three boys, cuts against the grain of the community with his constant heretical doubt.
111. Jules and Jim (1962) Dir. Francois Truffaut, 105 mins.
Set around the time of World War I, it describes a tragic love triangle involving French Bohemian Jim (Henri Serre), his shy Austrian friend Jules (Oskar Werner), and Jules’s girlfriend and later wife Catherine (Jeanne Moreau).
110. Grand Illusion (1937) Dir. Jean Renoir, 114 mins.
The story concerns class relationships among a small group of French officers who are prisoners of war during World War I and are plotting an escape.
109. Nosferatu (1922) Dir. F.W. Murnau, 81 mins.
F. W. Murnau’s landmark vampire film begins in the Carpathian mountains, where real estate agent Hutter has arrived to close a sale with the reclusive Herr Orlok. Despite the feverish warnings of the local peasants, Hutter journeys to Orlok’s sinister castle and soon discovers that Orlok is no ordinary mortal.
108. The Red Shoes (1948) Dir. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger, 133 mins.
The film is about a ballerina who joins an established ballet company and becomes the lead dancer in a new ballet called The Red Shoes, itself based on the fairy tale “The Red Shoes” by Hans Christian Andersen.
107. Shoah (1985) Dir. Claude Lanzmann, 503 mins.
Shoah is a French documentary about the Holocaust, directed by Claude Lanzmann. Over nine hours long and 11 years in the making, the film presents Lanzmann’s interviews with survivors, witnesses and perpetrators during visits to German Holocaust sites across Poland, including extermination camps.
106. The General (1926) Dir. Clyde Bruckman, Buster Keaton, 103 mins.
Buster Keaton plays Johnnie Gray, a locomotive engineer. He returns to his hometown in Confederate Georgia to visit his fiance Annabelle Lee when the American Civil War breaks out.
105. Badlands (1973) Dir. Terrence Malick, 95 mins.
Martin Sheen does his best James Dean as a young man who feeling disenfranchised and having lost his job, takes up with a fifteen year old girl (Sissy Spacek) and they go on a Midwest crime spree in Terrence Malick’s hypnotically assured debut feature, based on the 1950s Starkweather-Fugate murders.
104. Chungking Express (1994) Dir. Wong Kar-Wai, 98 mins.
The film consists of two stories told in sequence, each about a lovesick Hong Kong policeman mulling over his relationship with a woman. The first story stars Takeshi Kaneshiro as a cop obsessed with his breakup with a woman named May, and his encounter with a mysterious drug smuggler (Brigitte Lin). The second stars Tony Leung as a police officer roused from his gloom over the loss of his flight attendant girlfriend (Valerie Chow) by the attentions of a quirky snack bar worker (Faye Wong). It’s the relationship between Leung and Wong that really makes the film.
103. Solaris (1972) Dir. Andrei Tarkovsky, 169 mins.
The film is a meditative psychological drama occurring mostly aboard a space station orbiting the fictional planet Solaris. The scientific mission has stalled because the skeleton crew of three scientists have fallen into separate emotional crises. Psychologist Kris Kelvin travels to the Solaris space station to evaluate the situation only to encounter the same mysterious phenomena as the others.
102. The Mother and the Whore (1973) Dir. Jean Eustache, 217 mins.
In this intense character study, irresponsible Parisian Jean-Pierre Leaud decides that he desperately needs a wife and so leaves his lover to propose to his ex-girlfriend. His self-absorbed pseudo-intellectual ramblings turn her off, and she turns him down. He meets a nurse who later involves herself with Leaud and his lover. One of just two feature film’s made by Eustache before his untimely death, The Mother and the Whore has real bite.
101. The Thin Red Line (1998) Dir. Terrence Malick, 170 mins.
Based on the novel by James Jones, it tells a fictionalised version of the Battle of Mount Austen, which was part of the Guadalcanal Campaign in the Pacific Theatre of World War II. It portrays soldiers of C Company, 1st Battalion, 27th Infantry Regiment, 25th Infantry Division, played by Sean Penn, Jim Caviezel, Nick Nolte, Elias Koteas and Ben Chaplin. It features stunning cinematography and a haunting soundtrack from Hans Zimmer.