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Top 10 of the Seventies 
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Post Top 10 of the Seventies
It was a great decade for film, and I'm curious what films people think are the cream of the crop. So if you're interested, throw down your Top 10, critique other people's, rant about how American cinema hasn't been the same since, what have you.

N.B. Last time I proposed a Top 10 list I caused a lot more of a stir than I intended by asking for a list of "Best" rather than "Favorites." For this case, throw down whichever you want but please label it so I know which list it is.

Best Films of the Seventies, in my reasonably-humble opinion:

Honorable Mentions: Being There (1979), Carnal Knowledge (1971)

10. The Man Who Would Be King (1974)
9. Dawn of the Dead (1978)
8. Cries and Whispers (1972)
7. Network (1976)
6. Alien (1979)
5. Taxi Driver (1976)
4. Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972)
3. The Godfather (1972)
2. Apocalypse Now (1979)
1. Chinatown (1974)

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Mon Dec 07, 2009 8:45 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
1. The Godfather
2. The Deer Hunter
3. Jaws
4. The Godfather Part 2
5. Star Wars
6. Taxi Driver
7. Shampoo
8. Annie Hall
9. A Clockwork Orange
10. Serpico


Wed Dec 09, 2009 11:49 am
Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
I don't have a fully fledged "Top 10 of the '70s" yet, but I do have the top four slots filled, culled from my all time Top 10 list.

4. Woodstock (1970)
3. Superman (1978)
2. The Godfather (1972)
1. Taxi Driver (1976)

It's worth mentioning that the '70s is, hands down, my favorite decade in film. In my humble opinion, it was the peak of American cinema.


Wed Dec 09, 2009 2:36 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
The seventies certainly were a great decade, especially if you extend it past its literal definition and include the late 60s. The early sixties were a cinematic wasteland (especially in America) but then the French kinda bailed out the world, and in then we got this 15 year block between 1965 and 1979 when film was arguably never better. Though recently I took a closer look at the 90s and realized that it was also an incredible decade, much better than the one we're currently wrapping up

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Wed Dec 09, 2009 4:22 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
A Clockwork Orange
All The President's Men
Animal House
Apocalypse Now
Being There
Eraserhead
Godfather (Whichever)
Harold And Maude
Jesus Christ, Superstar
Logan's Run
M*A*S*H
Midnight Expre
Monty Python And The Holy Grail
One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest
Patton
Rocky
Saturday Night Fever
Shampoo
Soylent Green
Taxi Driver
What's Up Doc?
Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory
Young Frankenstein


Wed Dec 09, 2009 6:43 pm
Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
Dude...you totally skipped the Eighties. How come? Bret Michaels 4EVA.

The Seventies are probably my favourite of all decades. I gave the first 8 films on the list a perfect 10/10, so, when compared to the 2000s, this list was actually easy to make.

10. Dog Day Afternoon (1975)
09. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
08. Chinatown (1974)
07. The Godfather (1972)
06. The Godfather: Part II (1974)
05. Apocalypse Now (1979)
04. Alien (1979)
03. Annie Hall (1977)
02. Taxi Driver (1976)
01. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

Sadly, I haven't listed a single foreign film.


Wed Dec 09, 2009 8:44 pm
Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
I think I'ma stay out of this thread until I see Apocalypse Now. XD


Wed Dec 09, 2009 9:42 pm
Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
Pedro wrote:
I think I'ma stay out of this thread until I see Apocalypse Now. XD


Its in my list


Wed Dec 09, 2009 11:03 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
ed_metal_head wrote:
10. Dog Day Afternoon (1975)
09. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977)
08. Chinatown (1974)
07. The Godfather (1972)
06. The Godfather: Part II (1974)
05. Apocalypse Now (1979)
04. Alien (1979)
03. Annie Hall (1977)
02. Taxi Driver (1976)
01. A Clockwork Orange (1971)


I never saw what was so great about A Clockwork Orange. Sure it's exquisitely directed, but what is it saying? I always found its message rather muddled, which I hear is partly because Kubrick didn't use the last chapter in Burgess's novel which makes his themes a little less oblique. A *** movie for me, and certainly not better than The Godfather, Chinatown, etc. That said, I like your list a lot.

I just watched a movie today that I have to add to my list. Ingmar Bergman's Scenes from a Marriage. Masterful, masterful filmmaking. Only my second **** movie in my last ~120 films or so.

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Wed Dec 09, 2009 11:10 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
Runner Ups: Life of Brian, Dog Day Afternoon, The Godfather, Straw Dogs, Barry Lyndon, Blue Collar, and Chinatown

10. Dawn of the Dead
09. All That Jazz
08. Nashville
07. The Conformist
06. Aguirre: The Wrath of God
05. The Godfather Part II
04. The King of Marvin Gardens
03. The Enigma of Kasper Hauser
02. Taxi Driver
01. Apocalypse Now

God, what a fantastic decade for film. I probably like the 60s a little more (It did produce what are, in my estimation, the two greatest films of all time), but the two are so close in quality I don't even want to try to pick a favorite. I love them both.


Last edited by Zeppelin on Thu Dec 10, 2009 6:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Dec 10, 2009 1:06 am
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
Zeppelin wrote:
(I did produce what are, in my estimation, the two greatest films of all time)


You're a producer from the 1960s? Wow. Seriously though, what are the two films from the 60s you find the best ever?

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Thu Dec 10, 2009 7:30 am
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
I'm curious how many total films from the 70s some of you have seen(isn't everyone here in their 20s or teens?)

Lists are fun & all, but let's be honest none of us are really qualified to assess a decade unless we were active movie watchers during that decade.

the 70s were a great decade for film, but trust me there were a lot of stinkers that decade as well. The thing is most of them have faded into obscurity(no dvd release or frequent tv broadcasts for them) the same goes for the 60s, 50s, 40s etc(do you know just how many films were released during the 40s? its pretty staggering. And I doubt most of them were of Casablanca like quality)

yet stuff like Jennifer's Body & 12 Rounds reach quite a wide audience today, despite bombing at the box office, so we can all continue to bemoan how crappy films are today & how much better it was in decades we weren't even alive in to see all the crap.

anyway here's my top 10(no order)

MASH
Last Picture Show
The Godfather
Deliverance
Chinatown
Jaws
Man Who Would Be King
Taxi Driver
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
Annie Hall



Quote:
I think I'ma stay out of this thread until I see Apocalypse Now. XD


since you put Cache on your best of the 00s without seeing it, what's stopping you from doing the same with Apocalypse?

Quote:
Seriously though, what are the two films from the 60s you find the best ever?


I'm guessing 8 1/2 & Andrei Rublev


Last edited by calvero on Thu Dec 10, 2009 2:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Dec 10, 2009 2:13 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
JamesKunz wrote:
what are the two films from the 60s you find the best ever?


Dr Strangelove, Butch Cassidy & Planet of the Apes

I can't count :)


Thu Dec 10, 2009 2:22 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
calvero wrote:
I'm curious how many total films from the 70s some of you have seen(isn't everyone here in their 20s or teens?)

Lists are fun & all, but let's be honest none of us are really qualified to assess a decade unless we were active movie watchers during that decade.

the 70s were a great decade for film, but trust me there were a lot of stinkers that decade as well. The thing is most of them have faded into obscurity(no dvd release or frequent tv broadcasts for them) the same goes for the 60s, 50s, 40s etc(do you know just how many films were released during the 40s? its pretty staggering. And I doubt most of them were of Casablanca like quality)

yet stuff like Jennifer's Body & 12 Rounds reach quite a wide audience today, despite bombing at the box office, so we can all continue to bemoan how crappy films are today & how much better it was in decades we weren't even alive in to see all the crap.


I actually think this is an exceptionally good point by you, and one that I often try to make. When you hear people talk about how great the old days were when it came to movies and how "they don't make 'em like they used to," 99 times out of 100 the person is comparing Scary Movie to Casablanca for some asinine reason, and completely forgetting that the major studies turned out tons of absolutely shit movies in the 40s and 50s.

So yeah, I've only seen ~175 movies from the 70s and ~700 from the 00s, but that actually makes my point stronger in a way, since my Top 10 from the 70s kick the shit out of my top 10 of the 00s despite there being 500 fewer films to choose from in the former category.

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Thu Dec 10, 2009 4:35 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
JamesKunz wrote:
I actually think this is an exceptionally good point by you, and one that I often try to make. When you hear people talk about how great the old days were when it came to movies and how "they don't make 'em like they used to," 99 times out of 100 the person is comparing Scary Movie to Casablanca for some asinine reason, and completely forgetting that the major studies turned out tons of absolutely shit movies in the 40s and 50s.

So yeah, I've only seen ~175 movies from the 70s and ~700 from the 00s, but that actually makes my point stronger in a way, since my Top 10 from the 70s kick the shit out of my top 10 of the 00s despite there being 500 fewer films to choose from in the former category.


I'm with Kunz on this one. Sure, plenty of crap is made in every decade, but when I talk about how great the 60s/70s were, I'm really comparing the highs of those decades with the highs of every other decade. And no matter how much I love some of the films made in 00s, nothing in them that I've seen can compare to the best of the two decades I've seen. (Also, my usual argument for the 60s/70s being king is that those two decades were the longest-lasting point in film history when narrative cinema and the art house could live together in the same picture. Nowadays, the idea of an "art" film is usually super-slow, cold, meditative fare such as Gerry or There Will Be Blood (or mediocre Oscar-bait, but let's ignore that). Back then it was The Godfather and Taxi Driver. As much as I like the former, the latter are a hell of a lot easier to appreciate and enjoy. Of course, none of that factors in my love for Andrei Rublev, but let's ignore that and say I'm just talking about American cinema. Actually, now that I think about it my argument doesn't hold a whole lot of water. Guess there's a reason it's in parenthesis).

Quote:
I'm guessing 8 1/2 & Andrei Rublev


Hit the nail on the head calvero. I wouldn't look into that too much though anyone, since I've only seen both once, and I've had a few "bestest movie evers!" lose that status on second watch (Most notably: A Clockwork Orange, the first movie to make me realize the effect a director had on a film and the first movie I considered "art". Second watch was not nearly that positive. From **** to ***.). Still, 8 1/2 floored me more than any other movie has (Ignoring Rublev and Apocalypse Now, which comes in 3rd on the favorites list) and Andrei Rublev caused a spiritual epiphany during one of my frequent bouts with nihilism, and the short period from my first viewing to falling asleep that night may have been the happiest I've ever been. Keep in mind that I'm generally a very happy person. Very few things in my life can compare to that, movies or not.


Thu Dec 10, 2009 7:24 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
Quote:
So yeah, I've only seen ~175 movies from the 70s and ~700 from the 00s,


those are impressive numbers, esp for the 00s. doubt I've seen that much from this decade (I haven't kept track of how many movies I've seen, but I've definitely lost interest in seeing that many recent films in the last 4-5 years or so. I get more excited by movies that I've never heard of that sound interesting that air on TCM than seeing something like Precious)

here's another way to compare the decades. we can all agree that the 70s are the best decade as far as the cream of the crop goes, but how about comparing the 'average' films of the 70s to the average films of the 00s? have you scored all those 175 movies? if so, how many were 3 stars?

Quote:
my usual argument for the 60s/70s being king is that those two decades were the longest-lasting point in film history when narrative cinema and the art house could live together in the same picture. Nowadays, the idea of an "art" film is usually super-slow, cold, meditative fare such as Gerry or There Will Be Blood (or mediocre Oscar-bait, but let's ignore that). Back then it was The Godfather and Taxi Driver.


Its kinda funny to hear The Godfather called an 'art film.' It was the highest grossing film of all time up to that time I think. while blockbusters today are fare like Transformers & Twilight.

I can't think of another film which was as popular with critics & audiences as The Godfather was/is.

Quote:
Most notably: A Clockwork Orange, the first movie to make me realize the effect a director had on a film and the first movie I considered "art". Second watch was not nearly that positive. From **** to ***.)


wow, that was a quick turnaround. I remember you mentioning it was your favorite film not that long ago. I also have thought less of it as time goes on.


Thu Dec 10, 2009 7:55 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
Zeppelin, are you planning on seeing 'Nine?'


Thu Dec 10, 2009 8:58 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
I dunno...the idea of an actually interesting, coherent version of 8 1/2 might scare fans of the original away

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Thu Dec 10, 2009 9:32 pm
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Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
calvero wrote:
Its kinda funny to hear The Godfather called an 'art film.' It was the highest grossing film of all time up to that time I think. while blockbusters today are fare like Transformers & Twilight.

I can't think of another film which was as popular with critics & audiences as The Godfather was/is.
It probably didn't help that just a few years after The Godfather, Spielberg and Lucas completely redefined what a blockbuster was.


Thu Dec 10, 2009 11:59 pm
Post Re: Top 10 of the Seventies
calvero wrote:
Quote:
Most notably: A Clockwork Orange, the first movie to make me realize the effect a director had on a film and the first movie I considered "art". Second watch was not nearly that positive. From **** to ***.)


wow, that was a quick turnaround. I remember you mentioning it was your favorite film not that long ago. I also have thought less of it as time goes on.


Yeah, one viewing can make a big difference. Going into ACO with knowledge of the directorial sledgehammer coming at me made the actual experience much less satisfying. It's difficult to deny that a lot of that film's power lies in its power to shock, and once that's lost so is part of the overall effect. I still think it's a great movie, but not perfect or even really enjoyable.

JamesKunz wrote:
I dunno...the idea of an actually interesting, coherent version of 8 1/2 might scare fans of the original away


calvero wrote:
Zeppelin, are you planning on seeing 'Nine?'


I'll answer both comments at once by quoting: "You either think 8 1/2 is an absolute masterpiece or a pretentious bore. Do we really need two of that?"

Actually, I probably will see Nine since I enjoyed Chicago a lot, but most likely not in theaters. Don't take that as a slam against the movie though: I only see one or two movies a month in theaters, usually because I'm either broke or there's nothing I want to see. Still, when I do see it I'll be taking it as a completely different play on the same basic concept and not as a remake. As the quote said, do we really need two 8 1/2s?


Fri Dec 11, 2009 12:13 am
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