Todd Brown is the founder and editor of Twitchfilm.net, one of the more unique film sites out there as it mostly pays attention to the independent, cult, foreign and cool genre films that aren’t being discussed a hundred times on other sites.
It’s a vital read for those who believe the majority of the best films of every year are made outside of the Hollywood elite and I’m not kidding when I say that on a near everyday basis, I read on Twitch about a hidden gem of a movie that I have to rush out and mark on my calendar. Basically anything that is cool but is maybe not being spoken about elsewhere… which makes the site a must read for those hunting out hidden gems.
Todd also runs a regular column at AICN. But if he was stuck on a desert island with only five movies and a dvd player, he would take with him…
Terry Gilliam’s Brazil is the film that completely changed my understanding of what movies could be. My first viewing was of the butchered studio cut on television, but even seeing it that way there was more than enough for the film to get its claws into me. Late in high school I convinced an English teacher that a screenwriter was close enough to a playwright to let me do an independent study on Gilliam and for that I probably watched the film on VHS another ten to fifteen timtime I watch it.
Yeah, I’ve got my opinion about which cut is the best but I really don’t care, honestly. Whatever cut you look at this film is still ten times better than most. It pains me that Ridley Scott doesn’t seem to understand what makes his best films great – I still can’t believe he gave a definitive answer to the whole ‘Is Dekker a replicant’ question – but this is an undeniable masterpiece that looks every bit as good now as it did the day it was released.
Yes, The Killer is arguably a better movie but when it comes to straight up entertainment value it simply doesn’t get any better than the hospital corridor fight sequence – for a couple decades the longest single take action sequence caught on film, I believe – or the ludicrous intensity of the final battle sequence. Tony Leung is still making good movies but Chow Yun Fat seems to have completely lost the plot these days so it’s nice to go back to the glory days.
Yeah, Jet’s a better fighter but Jackie’s a more pure entertainer and he’s never been better than he was with this film. Far and away the best thing Chan has ever done this is still a potent reminder of why Hong Kong film mattered, I still can’t believe he walked away from some of the stunts in this film …
For my money Nicholas Winding Refn’s Pusher trilogy is the greatest accomplishment in the history of crime film and, yes, that means I do believe they are better as a whole than the Godfather films and this is the best of them. Gritty, violent, and heart wrenching, this is probably the best performance of Mads Mikkelsen’s career – you know him as the villain in Casino Royale – and the film that literally saved Refn from financial ruin.
This article was first posted on April 3, 2009