Ten Films You Must Watch Before You Die

My Top Ten Favourite Films:

*There may be some spoilers*

*This list is not set in stone. As of this current moment these are my favourite films*

  1. Inception (2010, directed by Christopher Nolan)

Genres: Action/ Thriller/ Sci-fi.

Memorable scene: The hotel scene when the van begins to fall off the bridge, causing everything within the dreams to tilt. Joseph Gordon-Levitt dealt with it all very well.

Best actor: Leonardo DiCaprio.

Reasons why it appeals to me: The concept of dreams has always fascinated me and Nolan takes that concept to a whole new level, or four levels if you will. It is an authentic, innovative, and stunningly shot film, and will no doubt stand the test of time. We can only hope that Cobb is awake by the end of the film, but we will never know. And that makes the film all the more exciting.


  1. The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012, directed by Stephen Chbosky)

Genres: Drama/ Coming-of-age.

Memorable quote: “We accept the love we think we deserve”- Charlie.

Best actor: Logan Lerman.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: It completely surprised me. I saw it in the cinema with no expectations as I had not read the book. Logan Lerman’s performance as Charlie is my favourite thing about this film as you really feel for the character and believe in what he is going through. It is one of the few films that genuinely affected me after viewing it. What I mean by this is, as cliché and dramatic as it sounds, it actually changed me as a person. It is a very rare quality to find in a film, and one that you can only experience by watching it yourself.

the perks of being a wallflower

  1. The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014, Wes Anderson)

Genres: Comedy/ Adventure.

Memorable quote: “There are still faint glimmers of civilisation left in this barbaric slaughterhouse that was once known as humanity” –Gustave.

Best actor: Ralph Fiennes.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: It’s weird. It’s beautiful to look at. It’s funny. It’s thought-provoking. It’s unique. It’s imaginative. It’s one of those films you can watch over and over again and get something different from each viewing. It’s Anderson’s best film to date, in my opinion, and is just a wonderful piece of audio-visual entertainment.

the grand budapest

  1. Vertigo (1958, Alfred Hitchcock)

Genres: Thriller/ Mystery.

Memorable scene: The moment when Judy emerges from the bathroom and  becomes Madeleine.

Best actor: Kim Novak.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: Hitchcock is my all time favourite director, no question, and this film is one of the reasons why. It is colourful, the storyline is compelling and suspenseful, and Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak both give stunning performances. I have watched it close to ten times now because it is such a good film. I would highly recommend it to anyone who loves a good mystery.


  1. Singin’ in the Rain (1952, directed by Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen)

Genres: Musical/ Romance.

Memorable scene: Good Mornin’.

Best actor: Gene Kelly.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: It’s completely nostalgic as I watched it about twenty times as a child. But it is also a musical masterpiece. Every song and dance number is faultless and I could probably recite not only the songs, but the entire script off by heart. Kelly, O’Connor, and Reynolds are next to perfection throughout the entirety of this film.

singin in the rain

  1. Airplane! (1980, directed by David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, Jerry Zucker)

Genres: Comedy/ Parody.

Favourite gag: Ted’s “drinking problem”.

Best actor: Leslie Nielson.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: It’s my sense of humour in one film. It’s extremely witty, and whenever I don’t know what to watch, I will resort to this film. I’ve seen it way too many times, but it never fails to entertain me. If you enjoy silly, yet clever humour, then this is a film I couldn’t recommend highly enough.


  1. 500 Days of Summer (2009, directed by Marc Webb)

Genres: Indie/ Romantic Comedy.

Memorable scene: The romanticising of IKEA scene.

Best actor: Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: It combines surrealism with realism to create a relatable romantic comedy that is unique to the genre. The fact that it uses a non-linear narrative structure adds to its authenticity. Also, the film’s use of music by Regina Spektor is the icing on the cake for me. I would recommend it to anyone who isn’t a fan of rom-coms because it will definitely surprise you like it surprised me.

500 days of summer

  1. Before Sunrise (1995, directed by Richard Linklater)

Genres: Romantic/ Comedy.

Memorable quote: “I like to feel his eyes on me when I look away” – Celine.

Best actor: Julie Delpy.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: It’s the kind of film I would normally hate, but here it is in my top three favourite films. I first watched this in one of my film classes and I remember thinking “I’m probably going to hate this”. Then about half an hour into the film I noticed tears in my eyes. Not because it was particularly sad, but because the film itself was so moving, especially the script. It’s one of those films that makes me think about every aspect of my life and about life in general. It is a truly magnificent film.

before sunrise

  1. Spirited Away (2003, directed by Hayao Miyazaki)

Genres: Anime/ Animation/ Fantasy.

Memorable scene: When No-Face comes to the Bath House and starts eating everything.

Best actor: Rumi Hiiragi.

            Reasons why it appeals to me: I adore animated films which is why I had to include at least one in this list. Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli films are the best animated films to date in my opinion. This animation is like entering the imagination of Miyazaki himself and everything about it is stunning: the storyline, the animation itself, the characters, and the script. It is weird and wonderful and everything that I look for in animated films.

spirited away

  1. Psycho (1960, directed by Alfred Hitchcock)

Genres: Horror/ Thriller.

Memorable quote: “We all go a little mad sometimes. Haven’t you?”- Norman.

Memorable scene: When Marion is murdered in the shower (surprise, surprise). Truly ground-breaking.

Best actor: Anthony Perkins.

Reasons why it appeals to me: There are so many reasons why this is my favourite film. The main reason is that it is so ahead if its time. It is thrilling and creepy and suspenseful. It is timeless and set the bar for so many horror films and thrillers from 1960 until the present day. Hitchcock pushed so many boundaries in order to make this film and it certainly paid off. It is one of the few films in which the protagonist can be killed off within thirty minutes of the film starting. It is my favourite film by my favourite director and I will continue to watch it whenever I want to be reminded of Hitchcock’s masterful filmmaking.





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