This year I’m looking at my Top 50 films of All Time. Periodically throughout the year I’ll be sharing this countdown in blocks of 10 films at a time. If you’d like to take this journey week-by-week, feel free to visit here on Fridays. For now, here’s a look at the next 10 films on my list, going from 40-31.
This list is very personal. Those who follow me on Letterboxd or weekly reviews know that I am cautious with my grades. In fact, I don’t even have 50 films that I’ve given Five Stars. But all those I have reviewed as Five Stars will be in this countdown. So, enjoy my Top 50 of All Time, a list I worked hard to curate.
40. Bring It On (2000)
About: I remember when I first saw this film, it was unlike anything I’d seen. The humor and the pacing, the fun of the film. I watched it a number of times in college, and I’ve watched it a number of times since. I have a soft spot for this genre. This film isn’t deep but it’s a lot of fun.
39. Way of the Gun (2000)
About: Another film from 2000! This one is an action film from Christopher McQuarrie, who has recently plied his skills working alongside Tom Cruise on the Mission Impossible franchise. Here, he delivers a fun and fascinating film that has one of the best shoot outs I’ve seen. This film has been a favorite since the first time I saw it.
38. Jurassic World (2015)
About: The fourth film in the franchise, this one was a re-boot. I was leery when it was coming out but mesmerized when I saw it. It reminded me of the original in all the best ways. It’s a well made and worthy follow up, a film I continue to enjoy.
37. Christmas Vacation (1989)
About: Christmas movies are a joy when they hit. This film, the third in the National Lampoon’s Vacation series, is a gem. It’s one of my favorite Christmas films, and one of my favorite films, period. I watch it each year at least once. It’s a remarkable comedy.
36. Pitch Perfect (2012)
About: A film about a collegiate acapella group? I wasn’t sure what to expect. Here, we get a magical comedy with a great cast led by Anna Kendrick. I love the music and the characters, this one is a lot of fun.
35. Twister (1996)
About: There are a lot of things about nature we simply don’t understand. This film, written by Michael Crichton and his wife, chronicles that. It’s also a deeply personal story about guilt, regret and the bonds of love. Helen Hunt and Bill Paxton are great, and this is a gripping story told well. I’ve enjoyed it for years and it remains a personal favorite.
34. Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (2018)
About: The lone documentary on this list, and the first of my personal five-star films. This one chronicles the life and career of Fred Rogers, who sought to love children through the medium of television. It’s a deeply personal and emotional tale.
33. Whiplash (2014)
About: Miles Teller and J.K. Simmons are incredible here in a film from Damien Chazelle that crackles. The final act of the film stuck with me long after the screening. It was the best film I saw in 2014 and remains one of the most gripping tales of passion and intensity I’ve seen.
32. Saving Private Ryan (1998)
About: This World War II epic from Steve Spielberg is a masterpiece. The fact it didn’t win Best Picture is a travesty, but the performances and scope are epic. Tom Hanks is incredible in the lead role. This is a gripping and emotional journey; one I will never forget.
31. Knives Out (2019)
About: Rian Johnson is a fascinating filmmaker. He makes a couple appearances on this list, beginning with this whodunnit. It has a loaded cast, but it’s the characters, the writing and the way the story unfolds that makes it hum. It was my favorite film of 2019 and a film I’ve seen nearly a half dozen times in the last three years.
Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.