Best Films of the 1950's

  2. Touch of Evil - Orson Welles (1958) [Restored Welles' Cut, 108 minutes]
  3. North By Northwest - Hitchcock (1959)

  4. 8/10
  5. Vertigo - Alfred Hitchcock (1958)
  6. Limelight - Charlie Chaplin (1952)

  7. 7.5/10
  8. Sunset Boulevard - Billy Wilder (1950)
  9. The Seventh Seal - Ingmar Bergman (1957)
  10. Mr. Arkadin - Orson Welles (1955) [Comprehensive Version, 105 minutes]
  11. On the Waterfront - Elia Kazan (1954)
  12. Miracle in Milan - Vittorio de Sica (1951)
  13. Rear Window - Alfred Hitchcock (1954)
  14. Wild Strawberries - Ingmar Bergman (1957)
  15. A Face in the Crowd - Elia Kazan (1957)
  16. The Seven Samurai - Akira Kurosawa (1954)
  17. Rashomon - Akira Kurosawa (1950)
  18. Hiroshima, Mon Amour - Alain Resnais (1959)
  19. Ordet - Carl Theodor Dreyer (1955)
  20. Invasion of the Body Snatchers - Don Siegel (1956)
  21. Othello - Orson Welles (1952)
  22. Some Like it Hot - Billy Wilder (1959)
  23. All About Eve - Joseph Mankiewicz (1950)
  24. High Noon - Fred Zinneman (1952)
  25. Giant - George Stevens (1955)
  26. La Strada - Federico Fellini (1954)
  27. The Magician - Ingmar Bergman (1958)
  28. The Searchers - John Ford (1956)
  29. The Big Heat - Fritz Lang (1953)
  30. Tokyo Story - Yasujiro Ozu (1953)
  31. Kiss Me Deadly - Robert Aldrich (1955)
  32. Breathless - Jean-Luc Godard (1959)
  33. Paths of Glory - Stanley Kubrick (1957)
  34. To Catch a Thief - Alfred Hitchcock (1955)
  35. Smiles of a Summer Night - Ingmar Bergman (1955)
  36. Shane - George Stevens (1953)
  37. The African Queen - John Huston (1951)

Just rewatched the last third of Touch of Evil tonight and I think it deserves an upgrade on my list. Vertigo is just absolutely amazing. And it's great to see Sunset Boulevard high up there, I'll never forget the first time I saw it.

Suggestions: 12 Angry Men, Nights of Cabiria, Alice in Wonderland, Singin' in the Rain, and Strangers on a Train.

Good suggestions. I'd have to see 12 Angry Men again as well as Stranger On A Train. I haven't seen the other 3 yet.

Yup, you should definitely watch 12 Angry Men and Singin' in the Rain. Both are brilliant films.

My reply above is 2 1/2 yrs old and it's also incorrect: In regards to Strangers on a Train and 12 Angry Men, it's supposed to say that I'd have to see them "again".

Though, to this day, I don't think I've seen Singing in the Rain in its entirety. I'm sure I'll get back to it at some point pretty soon.

You like 12 Angry Men?

Yep :)

Always loved its starkness and play-like style. It creates more suspense, and helped in drawing me into the film. There was a time after I watched it for the first time, that I would keep watching it over and over again. Must have watched it about 7 to 8 times. Which is probably something like a record for me.

Wow, 7-8 times in a row!?!?!? :-O

Yeah, the whole week I was crazy about it XD My mom thought that I must surely be insane to keep wanting to watch a black and white film about a jury, which she probably thought wasn't the average topic for 12 year olds to watch films on, LOL

Haha, should've been watching American Pie or something

More like an animated film or something. Love those like the other kids too, though. Also, she DOES know that I like watching old movies (like she does). She just thought a film set entirely in a single room is not the thing most 12 year olds would like watching, as I said. I'm an unusual one like that. XD

Can you explain to me why North by Northwest is so high? It was pretty good, but 9/10?

I'll write a summary/review on it at some point, so I won't go into that much detail here but:

It's not just a simple suspense film plot like the endless films it's inspired since. Everything is under constant suspense: the plot, the stunts, every conversation, the multi-faceted characters, the interchanging themes (each sequence is satire, no wait it's drama, no wait it's screwball comedy, no wait it's action/adventure, no wait it's romance, no wait it's mystery/thriller/suspense, etc).

Aside from the brilliant plot itself, the film is an amazingly metaphorical depiction of a man coming to life and going through a series of transformations that result in a transcendant change in character, and a complete re-creation of his life. This is supported by the glorious, colorful visual style and several climactic sequences which are not just the action of the plot moving along, but also exemplify the quality and vivid cognizance of these transformations throughout the film, and also have, within each part, all the facets of the film in increasing interplay simultaneously (example: in the crop dusting sequence he is "George Kaplan" [from the viewpoint of the crop-duster] but he is also still "Roger Thornhill" [from his own viewpoint, also still wearing that suit!!!], he is being fired at and running for his life [suspense/action], he is being freakin' crop-dusted to death [satire/black comedy], his movements/falls/dashes are physically exaggerated [exemplifying the screwball nature of the scene], his "girlfriend" set him up [femme fatale romance], etc. He's a divorced, alcoholic, playboy, advertising exec who gets accidentally plummeted into a plot in which he becomes George Kaplan (who doesn't even exist) but then becomes Kaplan "from the ground up", mostly unwittingly, and thus "throws Roger Thornhill away". His mother doesn't even believe him (even asks him while he's running for his life if he'll be home for dinner - he still lives with her!!!). There's simply too much to go into here - there are several interchanging themes and angles to look at each sequence and set-piece with. The film is an ascending, overwhelming climax and convergence of all these aspects that is also a life-changing series of cognitions and transformations for the main character who at the finish ends up with his life totally re-created, on his honeymoon, consummating his marriage with his new wife (and of course, visually on cue, the train going into the tunnel is a metaphor for the sexual act).

Hope the above is at least somewhat coherant. I was in a real hurry. I'll elaborate more at a later time, or I'll just post a review/summary in my "Guide To My Greatest Films"

While I don't see most of it, it still makes sense, thank you!