Earlier this month, Sight and Sound magazine asked many of the well-known filmmakers today to list their favorite films, you can see the list here.
For this article, I would like to just focus on Quentin Tarantino‘s favorite films. If you read most of my articles on this site (i.e. ranking favorite Tarantino’s films) then you know that I’m a big fan of QT. Sure I thought Django Unchained was quite disappointing but it’s still better than most films I saw in 2012. If not for Tarantino, I may not have seen some of the classics from the 60s and 70s. Because of his recommendation, I discovered the films of the great late director Sam Peckinpah and some of the lesser known spaghetti western and action films from said decades.
If I remember correctly, Tarantino tends to put out his best of list yearly but I think this list is his top favorite films of all time. I was surprised to see a couple of films on his favorite list, but before we get on that, here are twelve of his picks:
- Apocalypse Now (1976) – Francis Ford Coppola
- The Bad News Bears (1976) – Michael Ritchie
- Carrie (1976) – Brian De Palma
- Dazed and Confused (1993) – Richard Linklater
- The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966) – Sergio Leone
- The Great Escape (1963) – John Sturges
- His Girl Friday (1939) – Howard Hawks
- Jaws (1975) – Steven Spielberg
- Pretty Maids All in a Row (1971) – Roger Vadium
- Rolling Thunder (1977) – John Flynn
- Sorcerer (1977) – William Friedkin
- Taxi Driver (1976) – Martin Scorsese
Out of the 12 films on the list there, the one I’ve never seen or heard of before is His Girl Friday. Otherwise I’ve seen all of them and four are on my all favorite list films: Apocalypse Now, Rolling Thunder, Sorcerer and Taxi Driver.
A couple of films that surprised me to see on his list are The Bad News Bears and Dazed and Confused; for the kind of films that he tends to make, I wouldn’t think he’d include a comedies on his list. Over all it’s a good mix of genre and it’s great seeing what kind of films he truly enjoy.
As mentioned earlier, the four films on his list that are also on my list, two of them are well known and highly regarded as some of greatest films ever made, Apocalypse Now and Taxi Driver. No doubt those two were excellent films and deserves all the praises from critics and fans alike. Now other two films were not as well known, Rolling Thunder and Sorcerer, both also came out in the late 70s but they didn’t garner any critical or box office success. I think these two films deserve to be seen by more people and if you’ve never seen it, I highly recommend you seek them out. Particularly Sorcerer which was a remake of a French film from 1953, Wages of Fear. To be honest with you, I prefer Sorcerer over Wages of Fear. It was well directed by the then hot director William Friedkin, who’d just made two very successful films, The Exorcist and The French Connection. I think the film failed because I believe audiences were expecting to see some sort of supernatural thriller not an action thriller about men versus nature.
Rolling Thunder on the other hand, was a gritty shoot’em up revenge action thriller, a genre that was quite popular at the time. For anyone who’ve never seen either of these films, the good news is that both are coming out on Blu-ray real soon. Friedkin has tweeted that he has raised enough money to do a digital restoration on Sorcerer so it can be release on Bluray.
Re: SORCERER. The original negative is in good condition. And it’s now being budgeted to make a new digital master. I’ll keep you updated.
— William Friedkin (@WilliamFriedkin) February 12, 2013
I can’t wait to see it on HD and in widescreen!
– Post by Ted S.
So what’s your opinion on Tarantino’s favorite films? Have you seen some or all of them? If so, share your opinion on the comments section.