My Essentials — Film & TV Favorites

Listing here for personal reference. I hope to write about all of them someday.

To address people who ask me (likely in outrage), “Why is so-and-so film, director… missing?” This list isn’t necessarily the greatest works of all time — rather, these are films/TV that have influenced, shaped, and carved an impression. For example, Hitchcock’s Psycho isn’t on here; does that mean I didn’t like it? No—Psycho is one of the greatest films ever but for reasons unexplained, I enjoy Vertigo, Rear Window, Shadow of a Doubt more.

Films underlined will link to an essay I’ve written on them.

In Chronological Order:

  1. A Trip to the Moon (1902) dir. George Melies
  2. Metropolis (1927) dir. Fritz Lang
  3. Un Chien Andalou (1928) dir. Luis Buñuel/Salvador Dali
  4. Angels with Dirty Faces (1938) dir. Michael Curtiz
  5. Shadow of a Doubt (1943) dir. Alfred Hitchcock
  6. Detour (1945) dir. Edgar G. Ulmer
  7. The Red Shoes (1948) dir. Powell + Pressburger
  8. The Third Man (1949) dir. Carol Reed
  9. Los Olvidados (1950) dir. Luis Bunuel
  10. Sunset Boulevard (1950) dir. Billy Wilder
  11. Ace in the Hole (1950) dir. Billy Wilder
  12. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951) Elia Kazan
  13. Ikiru (1952) dir. Akira Kurosawa
  14. Monsieur Hulot’s Holiday (1953) dir. Jacques Tati
  15. La Strada (1954) dir. Federico Fellini
  16. Seven Samurai (1954) dir. Akira Kurosawa
  17. Rear Window (1954) dir. Alfred Hitchcock
  18. Wild Strawberries (1955) dir. Ingmar Bergman
  19. Mon Oncle (1956) dir. Jacques Tati
  20. Touch of Evil (1957) dir. Orson Welles
  21. Nights of Cabiria (1957) dir. Federico Fellini
  22. Vertigo (1958) dir. Alfred Hitchcock
  23. Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959) dir. Alain Resnais
  24. The Twilight Zone (1959–1964) cr. Rod Serling
  25. La Dolce Vita (1960) dir. Federico Fellini
  26. Viridiana (1961) dir. Luis Buñuel
  27. La Notte (1961) dir. Michelangelo Antonioni
  28. The Virgin Spring (1960) dir. Ingmar Bergman
  29. Hud (1963) dir. Martin Ritt
  30. 8 1/2 (1963) dir. Federico Fellini
  31. La Rivière du Hibou (1963) dir. Robert Enrico (short)
  32. From Russia with Love (1963) dir. Terence Young
  33. Blow-Up (1966) dir. Michaelangelo Antonioni
  34. Persona (1966) dir. Ingmar Bergman
  35. Belle de Jour (1967) dir. Luis Buñuel
  36. Weekend (1967) dir. Jean-Luc Godard
  37. The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly (1967) dir. Sergio Leone
  38. Rosemary’s Baby (1968) dir. Roman Polanski
  39. Bullitt (1968) dir. Peter Yates
  40. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) dir. Stanley Kubrick
  41. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) dir. George Roy Hill
  42. The Conformist (1970) dir. Bernardo Bertolucci
  43. Five Easy Pieces (1970) dir. Bob Rafelson
  44. The French Connection (1971) dir. William Friedkin
  45. The Godfather I (1972) dir. Francis Ford Coppola
  46. The Getaway (1972) dir. Sam Peckinpah
  47. La Cabina (1972) dir. Antonio Mercero (short)
  48. Last Tango in Paris (1973) dir. Bernardo Bertolucci
  49. The Last Detail (1973) dir. Hal Ashby
  50. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia (1974) dir. Sam Peckinpah
  51. The Parallax View (1974) dir. Alan J. Pakula
  52. The Conversation (1974) dir. Francis Ford Coppola
  53. The Godfather II (1974) dir. Francis Ford Coppola
  54. Chinatown (1974) dir. Roman Polanski
  55. The Phantom of Liberty (1974) dir. Luis Buñuel
  56. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975) dir. Milos Forman
  57. Barry Lyndon (1975) dir. Stanley Kubrick
  58. The Mirror (1975) dir. Andrei Tarkovsky
  59. The Passenger (1975) dir. Michaelangelo Antonioni
  60. The Tenant (1976) dir. Roman Polanski
  61. Taxi Driver (1976) dir. Martin Scorsese
  62. Sorcerer (1977) dir. William Friedkin
  63. The Deer Hunter (1978) dir. Michael Cimino
  64. Apocalypse Now (1979) dir. Francis Ford Coppola
  65. Manhattan (1979) dir. Woody Allen
  66. Raging Bull (1980) dir. Martin Scorsese
  67. The Shining (1980) dir. Stanley Kubrick
  68. Blow Out (1981) dir. Brian De Palma
  69. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) dir. Steven Spielberg
  70. The Thing (1982) dir. John Carpenter
  71. Videodrome (1983) dir. David Cronenberg
  72. Once Upon a Time in America (1984) dir. Sergio Leone
  73. Back to the Future (1985) dir. Robert Zemeckis
  74. After Hours (1985) dir. Martin Scorsese
  75. Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) dir. Woody Allen
  76. Blue Velvet (1986) dir. David Lynch
  77. Full Metal Jacket (1987) dir. Stanley Kubrick
  78. Spoorloos (1988) dir. George Sluizer
  79. I…Dreaming (1988) dir. Stan Brakhage (short)
  80. Life Lessons (1989) dir. Martin Scorsese (short)
  81. Goodfellas (1990) dir. Martin Scorsese
  82. The Silence of the Lambs (1991) dir. Jonathan Demme
  83. Terminator 2: Judgement Day (1992) dir. James Cameron
  84. Carlito’s Way (1993) dir. Brian De Palma
  85. Menace II Society (1993) dir. The Hughes Brothers
  86. The Age of Innocence (1993) dir. Martin Scorsese
  87. The X-Files (1993–2016) cr. Chris Carter
  88. Pulp Fiction (1994) dir. Quentin Tarantino
  89. Casino (1995) dir. Martin Scorsese
  90. Before Sunrise/Sunset (1995; 2004) dir. Richard Linklater
  91. The Bridges of Madison County (1995) dir. Clint Eastwood
  92. Heat (1995) dir. Michael Mann
  93. Se7en (1995) dir. David Fincher
  94. Cure (1997) dir. Kiyoshi Kurosawa
  95. Lost Highway (1997) dir. David Lynch
  96. L.A. Confidential (1997) dir. Curtis Hanson
  97. Jackie Brown (1997) dir. Quentin Tarantino
  98. The Spanish Prisoner (1998) dir. David Mamet
  99. Saving Private Ryan (1998) dir. Steven Spielberg
  100. The Ninth Gate (1999) dir. Roman Polanski
  101. Eyes Wide Shut (1999) dir. Stanley Kubrick
  102. Traffic (2000) dir. Steven Soderbergh
  103. Y Tu Mama Tambien (2001) dir. Alfonso Cuaron
  104. Mulholland Drive (2001) dir. David Lynch
  105. Punch-Drunk Love (2002) dir. Paul Thomas Anderson
  106. Habla con Ella (2002) dir. Pedro Almodovar
  107. 25th Hour (2002) dir. Spike Lee
  108. The Pianist (2002) dir. Roman Polanski
  109. Cache (2005) dir. Michael Haneke
  110. Match Point (2005) dir. Woody Allen
  111. Three Times (2005) dir. Hou Hsiao Hsien
  112. No Country for Old Men (2007) dir. The Coen Brothers
  113. There Will Be Blood (2007) dir. Paul Thomas Anderson
  114. The Dark Knight (2008) dir. Christopher Nolan
  115. Breaking Bad (2008–2013) cr. Vince Gilligan
  116. The Ghost Writer (2009) dir. Roman Polanski
  117. Tree of Life (2011) dir. Terrence Malick
  118. Midnight in Paris (2011) dir. Woody Allen
  119. The Master (2012) dir. Paul Thomas Anderson
  120. True Detective S1 (2014) dir. Cary Fukanaga / wr. Nic Pizzalatto
  121. Interstellar (2014) dir. Christopher Nolan
  122. Burning (2018) dir. Lee Chang Dong
  123. The Irishman (2019) dir. Martin Scorsese

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Filmmaker | Photographer | MatthewOquendo.com

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Matthew Oquendo

Matthew Oquendo

Filmmaker | Photographer | MatthewOquendo.com

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