Films to see before you die

  1. Reservoir Dogs. A simple premise - the heist gone wrong with an informer in the middle - taken to extremes with a classy soundtrack, sharp suits and sharper dialogue. Oh, and the most parodied torture scene ever committed to celluloid. While Tarantino borrows from many classics, the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. This film survives many viewings while only getting better. If you haven't seen it already - where the hell have you been?
  2. The Usual Suspects. A fantastic film for a whole host of reasons. Perfect characterisations played by a practically faultless cast, a plot which keeps you guessing, a wet-trout moment of a denouement and a semi-mythical arch villain all come to the boil in Chris McQuarrie's noir magnifique.
  3. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. Sergio Leone's most famous work is a masterpiece of cinema in every respect. Sweeping and grandiose, yet with some of the most studied characters in the whole of the genre (or indeed cinema in general) this is a film of many levels - and it works on all of them.