Films about films – ranked! | Films

20. Shadow of the Vampire (2000)

What if Max Schreck, star of FW Murnau’s silent traditional Nosferatu, actually had been a vampire? It’s an irresistible premise, and Willem Dafoe is poignant, repulsive and hilarious because the actor who works solely at evening – however the film-makers blot their copybook by depicting Murnau, film-making genius, as a talentless hack.

John Malkovich and Willem Dafoe as FW Murnau and Max Schreck in Shadow of the Vampire.
John Malkovich and Willem Dafoe as FW Murnau and Max Schreck in Shadow of the Vampire. {Photograph}: Saturn Movies/BBC Movies/Allstar

19. The Stunt Man (1980)

A fugitive Vietnam battle veteran blunders on to a movie set, by chance kills a stuntman and is blackmailed by the megalomaniac director (Peter O’Toole) into taking the lifeless man’s place. Richard Rush’s intelligent dramedy pioneers the kind of reality-bending state of affairs that might change into all the trend 20 years later.

18. Two Weeks in One other City (1962)

A washed-up American star (Kirk Douglas) will get a shot at redemption on a film being shot at Cinecittà studios exterior Rome in Vincente Minnelli’s splendidly overripe melodrama. Highlights embody Douglas behaving badly in nightclubs and an intense drunk-driving scene with Cyd Charisse screaming within the passenger seat of his Maserati.

17. By way of the Olive Bushes (1994)

Abbas Kiarostami’s account of a movie crew capturing a film in an earthquake-torn Iranian village is a low-key charmer. There’s loads of mild humour as a stonemason turned actor fails to woo his main woman, whereas the non-professional performers preserve objecting to dialogue that doesn’t tally with their very own life experiences.

16. As soon as Upon a Time … in Hollywood (2019)

When it’s not riffing on the Manson murders, Quentin Tarantino’s love letter to Nineteen Sixties Hollywood hangs out with has-been motion star Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double (Brad Pitt), or watches Sharon Tate (Margot Robbie) watching herself on display screen. Loses factors for its disrespectful portrayal of Bruce Lee.

15. Bowfinger (1999)

Steve Martin and Eddie Murphy in Bowfinger.
Steve Martin and Eddie Murphy in Bowfinger. {Photograph}: Common/Allstar

Steve Martin performs a grade-z film-maker capturing a science fiction film round a paranoid motion star (Eddie Murphy) who doesn’t know he’s being filmed, and assumes the weird occasions round him are an alien conspiracy. Murphy additionally performs a goofy lookalike tricked into operating throughout a busy freeway. Comedy gold!

14. The Participant (1992)

After years out of the mainstream, Robert Altman made a comeback with Michael Tolkin’s adaptation of his personal novel a couple of studio government (Tim Robbins) who murders a screenwriter. However overlook the plot, and get a load of the star cameos and in-jokes in a vigorous deconstruction of Hollywood cliches.

13. The Huge Image (1989)

Jennifer Jason Leigh and Kevin Bacon in The Big Picture.
Jennifer Jason Leigh and Kevin Bacon in The Huge Image. {Photograph}: Aspen Movie Society/Allstar

Christopher Visitor’s directing debut was this pleasant satire about an idealistic movie graduate (Kevin Bacon) whose cherished Bergman-esque challenge is remodeled by Hollywood right into a crass teen pic. With tremendous help from Jennifer Jason Leigh as a fellow graduate, and Martin Quick in a tour de drive cameo as Bacon’s agent.

12. Dolemite Is My Identify (2019)

Eddie Murphy skilfully underplays his portrayal of 70s standup comic, proto-rapper and blaxploitation star Rudy Ray Moore, whose expertise for self-promotion trumps his appearing and kung fu talents. It’s like a transforming of Ed Wooden, if solely Wooden’s movies had been box-office smashes. Wesley Snipes gives unexpectedly hilarious help.

11. Millennium Actress (2001)

A documentarian interviews a reclusive movie star (loosely primarily based on Setsuko Hara) in Satoshi Kon’s beautiful anime. As her reminiscences weave out and in of actuality, we revisit the historical past of Twentieth-century Japan by way of its movie units, amid homages to administrators comparable to Yasujirō Ozu and Akira Kurosawa.

10. Hail, Caesar! (2016)

“Would that it had been so easy!” The Coen brothers parlay their love for traditional cinema right into a day within the lifetime of a studio “fixer” (Josh Brolin) who should cope with lacking or miscast actors and inconvenient pregnancies to maintain the 50s Hollywood dream manufacturing unit operating easily. It’s send-up and tribute, and Channing Tatum’s musical quantity is a knockout.

9. Contempt (1963)

A playwright (Michel Piccoli in a Dean Martin hat) travels to Capri to rewrite the Odyssey for the director Fritz Lang (taking part in himself), however his shallowness is undermined when his spouse (Brigitte Bardot) takes up with the producer (Jack Palance). Jean-Luc Godard’s iciest, most stunning movie is structured round a credibly disintegrating relationship, with a haunting rating by Georges Delerue.

Steve Buscemi and James LeGros in Living in Oblivion.
Steve Buscemi and James LeGros in Dwelling in Oblivion. {Photograph}: Columbia/Allstar

8. Dwelling in Oblivion (1995)

Steve Buscemi performs a director for whom the whole lot goes fallacious on the set of his arty-farty New York movie in Tom DiCillo’s scrumptious ode to indie film-making: intrusive microphones, exploding lamps, rebellious actors of small stature. James LeGros is priceless because the self-obsessed main man, whom DiCillo denies was modelled on the star of his directing debut – Brad Pitt.

7. One Minimize of the Lifeless (2017)

Shin’ichirô Ueda’s comedy, which took 1,000 occasions its microbudget on the field workplace, begins with solid and crew of a zombie pic attacked by actual zombies, all shot in a single take. A flashback to the challenge’s origins is just mildly attention-grabbing, however keep it up for a 3rd act that unfurls into an excellent celebration of bargain-basement film-making.

6. Ed Wooden (1994)

Tim Burton’s heartfelt biopic stars Johnny Depp as the person as soon as dubbed the “worst director of all time” – unfairly so, since Wooden’s low-budget monster films are nonetheless entertaining audiences 60 years later. It’s a humorous, bittersweet research of film-making turning a bunch of misfits into another household, with an Oscar-winning efficiency from Martin Landau as washed-up horror star Bela Lugosi.

5. Sullivan’s Travels (1941)

Joel McCrea performs a director of slapstick comedies who will get greater than he bargained for when he poses as a hobo to analysis human struggling for a critical drama. Preston Sturges dips into some very darkish locations as he asks: “Why make social realism when you can also make folks snicker?” however his personal movie is a masterclass in fusing comedy and tragedy.

Lana Turner and Kirk Douglas in The Bad and the Beautiful.
Lana Turner and Kirk Douglas in The Dangerous and the Stunning. {Photograph}: MGM/Allstar

4. The Dangerous and the Stunning (1952)

Kirk Douglas performs an Oscar-winning producer whose deliberate comeback hits the skids when former collaborators refuse to work with him. Vincent Minnelli’s irresistible slice of Hollywood-on-Hollywood reveals us the explanation why in flashbacks, that includes Dick Powell as The Author, Barry Sullivan as The Director, and Lana Turner as The Actress who has a world-class hysterical slot in ballgown and furs.

3. Day for Night time (1973)

François Truffaut performs the beleaguered director of a ropey romantic drama being filmed within the south of France in his personal semi-autobiographical billet doux to the cinema and the individuals who make it. Recalcitrant kittens, luvvie tantrums and forgetful divas are simply among the issues dropped at episodic life by a star-studded solid led by Jacqueline Bisset and Jean-Pierre Léaud.

2. Singin’ within the Rain (1952)

Donald O’Connor and Gene Kelly as Cosmo Brown and Don Lockwood in Singin’ in the Rain.
Donald O’Connor and Gene Kelly as Cosmo Brown and Don Lockwood in Singin’ within the Rain. {Photograph}: MGM/Allstar

Stanley Donen’s evergreen Hollywood musical is ready through the switchover from silents to speaking footage. Gene Kelly (who co-directed) performs a movie star captivated with the ingenue (Debbie Reynolds) employed to dub his co-star’s annoying voice. Donald O’Connor runs up the wall in Make ’em Snort, Cyd Charisse reveals her countless legs, and Kelly performs the splashiest dance in cinema historical past.

1. 8½ (1963)

Marcello Mastroianni performs a director who doesn’t have a clue what his subsequent movie is about, although his producers have already constructed him a large rocket ship set. Federico Fellini stirs goals, reminiscences and European cinema’s most lovely ladies into the final word blueprint for auteurs itching to place their very own lives up on display screen. Many have copied, however nobody has completed it fairly as fantastically.

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