When I decided to do a Reel Rumbles about the top 2 sports dramas, I assumed number one would be Rocky. I was wrong, but I was also stunned to see only two sports films in the global Top 100 Movies Of All Time. Not only that, but there are some great sports movies which are severely underrated, Caddyshack at number #355 and Slap Shot at number #491, just to name two. If this article does nothing else, I hope it inspires people to either watch more highly regarded sports movies, or at least re-rank some of these films and give them a nice bump.
This has been a huge week for new releases. Too big for one column. Check out our post on this week’s earlier list of new Netlfix Streaming movies.
Pulp Fiction (R | 1994)
Flickchart Ranking: #4
Directed By: Quentin Tarantino
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Doesn’t matter if you’re shipping up to Boston or dropping by the Overlook Hotel for a cozy winter getaway, the films in this week’s Reel Rumbles are sure to leave you blown away. For director Martin Scorsese, it was the film that finally earned him the respect of his peers. Uniting a stellar cast of hot new stars and old favorites, the auteur breathed his own style into the modern Asian classic Infernal Affairs (2002) with a tale of isolation and deception that struck chords with critics and delivered a shocking and graphic finale for audiences. But it has some stiff competition in the form of an unforgettable horror masterpiece from one of cinema’s most influential directors, Stanley Kubrick. Sharing one star and a common theme on the dangers of isolation, Kubrick’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel emblazoned horrifying imagery into popular culture and stands as perhaps his lead’s finest hour. Believe your eyes. Watch your back. And beware of Jack Nicholson. It’s time for The Departed vs. The Shining.
One was from a relatively young writer and director just hitting his stride. The other came from a seasoned pro, who had already given us some of the best films of all time. Drawing on a rich history of the real life mafioso’s exploits, these two films brought the stories, the characters, and the culture to life in a way that we had never seen before. The first had dazzling scope and a romanticized edge that almost glorified the ugliness despite its startlingly realistic violence. It captured the essence of some real-life mobsters, while adding a touch of glamour to the family business. The second stripped down that image and showed a raw, intense portrayal of street thug losers, who longed for the big time and would resort to ruthless, savage tactics to get there. In reality, their world was an unapologetically ugly one, but no less captivating. Talk to any film aficionado, and he or she will count both among the all-time greatest. But how do they fare against one another in the Reel Rumbles ring? It’s time to find out. So grab another cannoli, snuggle up to the fishes, and prepare to get whacked, it’s time for The Godfather vs. Goodfellas.