RABBIT & SNAIL’S FILM TALK reviews and appreciates the greatest films ever made, at least, the greatest films in our opinion.
Each week we add another classic film to our list of the 100 greatest films ever made, by taking an in-depth look at the film and the stars and filmmakers behind it to provide a rich critical review and appreciation of our chosen movie.
Our List (So far…)
The League of Gentlemen is a 1960 British criminal comedy film directed by Basil Dearden and starring Jack Hawkins, Nigel Patrick, Roger Livesey, and Richard Attenborough. It is based on the 1958 novel The League of Gentlemen by John Boland and adapted by Bryan Forbes, who also starred in the film. Championed by Morris Bright.
The Dark Knight is a 2008 superhero film directed, co-produced, and co-written by Christopher Nolan. Based on the DC Comics character Batman, the film is the second instalment of Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy and a sequel to 2005’s Batman Begins, starring an ensemble cast including Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Heath Ledger, Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal and Morgan Freeman. Championed by Mark Priest.
The Railway Children is a 1970 British drama film based on the novel of the same name by E. Nesbit. The film was directed by Lionel Jeffries, and stars Dinah Sheridan, Jenny Agutter (who had earlier featured in the successful BBC’s 1968 dramatisation of the novel), Sally Thomsett and Bernard Cribbins in leading roles. The film was released to cinemas in the United Kingdom on 21 December 1970. Championed by Phil Campbell.
12 Angry Men is Sidney Lumet’s classic 1957 courtroom drama with an impressive cast that includes Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb, Ed Begley, E. G. Marshall, Jack Warden and Jack Klugman. Adapted from a teleplay of the same name by Reginald Rose, the film tells the story of a jury of 12 men as they deliberate the conviction or acquittal of a defendant on the basis of reasonable doubt, forcing the jurors to question their morals and values. Championed for a position on our list of the 100 greatest films ever made by Brian Reynolds. Read our blog post here.
When a great white shark attacks the swimmers off the New England seaside town of Amity, local sheriff, played by Roy Scheider has to take on the local mayor as well as the shark to keep the residents safe. This classic film from 1975 was directed by a young Stephen Spielberg, which despite going significantly over schedule and budget, helped to make his name as an outstanding director. Championed by Mark Priest. Read our blog post here.
Victim is a classic 1961 British suspense film directed by Basil Dearden and starring Dirk Bogarde and Sylvia Syms. Bogarde plays a successful barrister, Melville Farr, who has a thriving London practice and is on course to become a judge and is happily married to Laura, played by Sylvia Syms. Farr is approached by Jack, a working class man with whom he had a brief relationship. Farr turns him away, suspecting that he is attempting to blackmail him, but Jack has fallen victim to blackmailers himself and is desperate for help. Championed by Morris Bright. Read our blog post here.
The Poseidon Adventure is a classic disaster film based on Paul Gallico’s bestselling novel. As was typical of many subsequent disaster films of the era, it starred an incredible ensemble cast, including five Academy Award winners, Gene Hackman, Ernest Borgnine, Jack Albertson, Shelley Winters and Red Buttons, with many of the interior shots being filled on the iconic RMS Queen Mary. Championed by Mark Priest. Read out blog post here.
La La Land is a highly acclaimed and multi-award winning musical starring Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. Directed by Damien Chazelle, La La Land tells the story of a jazz pianist and an aspiring actress, who fall in love while trying to realise their dreams in modern-day Los Angeles. La La Land was critically praised, especially for Chazelle’s screenplay and direction, Gosling and Stone’s performances, Justin Hurwitz’s musical score and Mandy Moore’s choreography. The film went on to sweep the board at just about every award ceremony over the coming year. Championed by Morris Bright MBE. Read our blog post here.
The Silence of the Lambs is the classic 1991 psychological thriller based on Thomas Harris’s book and directed by Jonathan Demme that introduced us to Hannibal Lecter, played brilliantly by Anthony Hopkins. The film, which also stars Jodie Foster, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, and Anthony Heald, follows rookie FBI agent, Clarice Starling, played by Foster, who is sent to try to elicit the advice of the imprisoned Dr. Hannibal Lecter, a psychiatrist and cannibalistic serial killer to help her apprehend another serial killer, known only as “Buffalo Bill”, who skins his female victims. Championed by Mark Priest. Read our blog post here.
Galaxy Quest is a 1999 science-fiction comedy directed by Dean Parisot, which takes a warm-hearted dip into the intergalactic world classic science-fiction films and TV series, and their incredibly enthusiastic fans. Galaxy Quest, starring Tim Allen, Sigourney Weaver and Alan Rickman, follows the cast of a defunct cult television series suddenly visited by real aliens who believe the programme was actually a documentary. The former cast members are reunited once again and this time find themselves taking on a very real space adventure. Championed by Phil Campbell.
Martin Scorsese’s 1990 Goodfellas stars Robert de Niro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Lorraine Bracco, Paul Sorvino, telling the story of the rise and fall of mob associate Henry Hill, his friends and his family over a twenty-five year period between 1955 and 1980. Goodfellas is based on Nicholas Pileggi’s non-fiction book, Wiseguy published in 1985. The film was a huge success at the box-office and was nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director, with Pesci winning for Best Supporting Actor. The film also won five BAFTA awards, including Best Film and Best Director. Championed by Morris Bright MBE. Read our blog post here.
Ridley Scott’s epic 2000 historical drama, Gladiator is set in AD 180 and tells the story of Hispano-Roman General Maximus Decimus Meridius. Emperor Marcus Aurelius tells Maximus that his own son, Commodus, is unfit to rule, and that he wishes Maximus to succeed him. Commodus, murders his father, seizes the throne and attempts kills Maximus’ family. Reduced to slavery, Maximus rises through the gladiatorial ranks to avenge his family and the emperor. Gladiator stars Russell Crowe, Connie Nielsen, Joaquin Phoenix, Richard Harris and Oliver Reed. Championed by Mark Priest. Read our blog post here.
Billy Wilder’s classic 1960 romantic comedy, The Apartment, stars Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine, ably supported by Fred MacMurray. The story sees insurance clerk, CC Baxter, played by Jack Lemmon, attempt to climb the career ladder by allowing a selection of senior management from his office to use his Upper West Side apartment to continue their nefarious extramarital affairs. Championed by Phil Campbell. Read our blog post here.
Alfred Hitchcock’s classic 1954 thriller stars James Stewart as a freelance photographer, more used to war zones and high-octane sporting events, laid up in his apartment with a broken leg. With only his observations of his neighbours to help pass the time he begins to suspect that one of them may have committed a murder, and along with his girlfriend, played by the exquisite Grace Kelly, they set about investigating. Championed by Morris Bright. Read our blog post here.
Euan Lloyd’s explosive production sees mercenaries Richard Burton, Roger Moore, Richard Harris and Hardy Kruger stranded in Africa having been double-crossed by their paymaster. They can either stay and be killed or fight their way out and risk starting a war. Championed by Mark Priest. Read our blog post here.
Charlie Chaplin’s iconic 1936 statement on the effects of the mass production on the world sees his familiar tramp character struggling to survive in a modern industrial society, starring Charlie Chaplin and Paulette Goddard. Championed by Hammer Runner, Phil Campbell. Read our blog post here.
Billy Wilder’s amazing comedy, starring Tony Curtis, Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe. Witnesses to a vicious St Valentine’s Day gangster massacre, musicians Curtis and Lemon take off and hide out as saxophonist and bass player in an all-girl jazz band. Championed by Morris Bright. Read our blog post here.