Most directors grow up obsessed with movies, so it’s no wonder that when they snag their dream career they tend to pay homage to classic movies which came before. While some of these references can be a little on the nose, others are quite subtle, or have more detail than you might have realised at first.
Either through the cast or the director, some movies share links naturally, and sometimes these are used to reference scenes earlier in their career. Other times, a classic movie homage might help build the tone or themes of the scene with a subtle wink to something else. Sometimes it just seems like directors enjoy making little tributes to movies they love.
Whatever the reason, these homages will completely change your viewing experience next time you watch these movies.
Importantly, general homages to genres haven’t been included here, as they aren’t subtle or specific enough. This means no Star Wars winking at the Western genre or Tarantino paying tribute to Asian cinema in Kill Bill, although both Star Wars and Tarantino might make a few appearances on either side of this list...