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Unappreciated masterpieces?

Discussion in 'The Moving Picture' started by Blackthorn, Jan 28, 2014.

  1. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    We will probably agree on most masterpieces, such as Chinatown or Casablanca or Gone With the Wind. But there are a number of what I consider to be flawless, but unappreciated masterpieces, and I'm sure we all have our favorites. Mine would include:

    This Land is Mine (1943)

    Schindler's List

    Defiance (with Daniel Craig, 2008)

    There is a theme here with these particular movies because today is Holocaust Remembrance Day, but that's just a coincidence. I've been thinking of this for some time, and there are many others that I consider to be unsung masterpieces. What are some of yours?
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2014
  2. 52 Pick Up (1986 - Roy Scheider)

    Hunter (1980 - Steve McQueen)
  3. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    I'm in total agreement on 52 Pick Up, great movie. I've always been surprised it wasn't a huge hit.

    I have yet to see Hunter, I'm glad you brought it back to my attention.
  4. The Last of the Mohicans with Daniel Day Lewis. Really a well made movie that seems to have slipped under the radar as they say.
  5. Stearmen

    Stearmen I'll Lock Up

    The Sand Pebbles
  6. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    I'm in total agreement on both Mohicans and Sand Pebbles. Absolute masterpieces, and I've never understood how they have flown under the radar like they have.
  7. I think you can classify by different genre. For example:

    In comedies, I think Dr. Strangelove is a masterpiece of satire and social commentary, though it's widely regarded as such, so hard to say it's "underappreciated". Blazing Saddles falls into that category as well, and clearly a film that could NEVER be made today. My favorite comedy of all time though is probably Arsenic and Old Lace, just for it's simple charm. It's a must for Halloween night.

    I also love westerns, particularly those that don't over glorify the hero. Unforgiven falls into this category, though I think Eastwood's masterpiece (also an anti-hero cowboy) is The Outlaw Josey Wales. On a scope and scale of pure golden age cinema, I love Giant.
  8. Wheeler and Woolsey's "Diplomaniacs."

    A better and funnier film than "Duck Soup," with more gags per minute than just about any picture you'll ever see. Edgar Kennedy presiding over the League of Nations with a machine gun is the most trenchant commentary on 1930s international politics ever offered. Co-written by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, with plenty of parody, satire, songs, Bert Wheeler in a fluffy negligee, Bob Woolsey in knee britches, Hugh Herbert as an inscrutable Chinese sage, and Marjorie White as a cellophane-wrapped vamp. And all this in just 61 minutes. There is nothing else quite like it.
    vitanola likes this.
  9. A very good list so far..

    Agreed on both of these.

    I'll add The Driver. I don't mean that piece of garbage from a few years back with Ryan Gosling that ripped off this under appreciated masterpiece. This one stars Ryan O'Neil and directed by Walter Hill in 1978.
    O'Neil plays a professional getaway car driver. Bruce Dern is an obsessed cop bent on catching him. I hope someone else has seen this film! In the genre of car chase films, this one is tops.
  10. Bottle Rocket (1996)
  11. Love that film. Before the quirky bells and whistles started overwhelming his films.
  12. p51

    p51 Practically Family

    "The Wind and the Lion"
    sad how few people even know this movie exists today. I have told many people about the film over the years and have always met with sleptical responses. None can believe a Sean Connery movie, directed by John Millius, could have ever escaped their notice.
    And Brian Keith as Theodore Roosevelt was amazing casting.
  13. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Yes, that was excellent.
  14. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Two more westerns that qualify, IMHO, are "McCabe and Mrs Miller" and "Man Who Loved Cat Dancing."
  15. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    That's a new one for me, I'll look it up.
  16. Blackthorn

    Blackthorn My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Also in the vein of a crime/caper movie, a masterpiece is Silent Partner, with Christopher Plummer and Elliot Gould.
  17. Of those three, I've only seen Schindler. It really is a superb piece of filmography - all the more shocking when you realise that its director is best known for lowest common denominator, saccharin rubbish, and only ever made a few good films by accident.
  18. Originally Martin Scorsese and Roman Polanski, himself a Holocaust survivor, were tapped to direct Schindler's List but both turned it down.
  19. vitanola

    vitanola My Mail is Forwarded Here

    "Make Way for Tomorrow", Leo McCarey's take on the world before Social Security. He always believed it to be his finest picture . IN fact, when he won his Academy Award for "The Awful Truth" he claimed that it had been awarded for the wrong picture.

    Beulah Bondi and Victor Moore absolutely shine as the elderly couple at the end of their tether.
  20. I think Spielberg has made some great movies. He directed some good ones I didn't find overly sentimental in The Color Purple, Munich, Saving Private Ryan and Lincoln, and I think 1941 is one of the most underappreciated comedies of the 70's. He also produced some really underappreciated comedies in Fandango and Three O'clock High.

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