9/02/2008

The Top 5 John Carpenter Films

In honor of the BAM in NY having four John Carpenter films being show on the big screen. I present to you the five best John Carpenter movies.

Carpenter has long been one of my fav directors and while, his recent work is not on par with his older work, there is no denying that he is one of the genre's most talented, respected, and important directors. His use of suspense, and the fact that he scores his own films, usually, sets him apart from his peers. Said, scores are some of the best and most memorable in the genre.

Anyways here comes the list:

5. - While, we all know that nothing happened in 1997 (if it did it means, being a NYer, I was, am ?, in lockdown!), this imaginative mix of suspense, action, and sci-fi had a great cast. As well as one of the single most badass anti-heroes ever in Snake Plisken. Darkly shot and filled with memorable characters, including having the always awesome Donald Pleasance playing the president and Isaac Hayes as the Duke (!), this sci-fi classic is, deservedly, a cult classic.

4. - Like many of Carpenter's films, this one was not a hit at it's time, but over the years, it became a cult classic. Once again, a great cast play some awesome characters. The action is exciting, and the political commentary just as thought provoking today as it was back then. This remains a relevant film, that also happens to have one of the greatest fist fights ever caught on celluloid, and one of the most memorable lines ever: "I have come here to chew bubble-gum and kick some ass, and I am all out of bubble-gum!" as said by wrestling legend Rowdy Roddy Piper (on a side note, Carpenter admitted he was a wrestling fan, wonder if he still watches the crap it has become now, probably not, though).

3. - A badass film all the way, this has a great hero and an awesome anti-hero in the lead. It is also a nail-biting and violent mix of action and suspense. The bloody murder of the little girl eating ice cream makes this one a daring film. One clearly of it's era. This was made very evident when the remake came out a few years ago. While, said movie is actually pretty good, it is not the level of this and of course, had no little girl getting killed.

2. - Whenever I see a movie with shitty CGI, or an unnecessary overdose of it, I think of films like this. Rob Bottin's exceptional work in this movie remains one of the absolute GREATEST in the entire genre. Ultra-gory and suspenseful, this remains one of the greatest remakes ever made. Yet, again an amazing cast shines in this truly amazing sci-fi/ horror film that features THE scariest blood test, EVER.

1. - While, this film borrowed elements from Bob Clark's amazing Black Christmas, it help set the rules for what the teen slasher film would be. Benefiting from the amazing and famous score, that Carpenter wrote, as well as the very suspenseful and intense style, Halloween is not only Carpenter's best film but one of the best horror films, ever. The cast is great, there is little gore (but the film feels violent, throughout), and it is one fuck of a scary film. Pleasance made his most well known role in this classic, and it gave birth to one of the most famous horror villains ever in Michael Myers. A classic in every way, shape (pun not intended), and form.


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