This is the second part of the Appendix of my 2004 collection Essential Cinema: On the Necessity of Film Canons. — J.R.
1000 Favorites (A Personal Canon), Part 2
The criteria I’ve used for inclusion on this list are pleasure and edification; I haven’t factored in any sense of historical importance that might exist independently of these factors. I’ve incorporated shorts as well as features, both animation and live-action, and videos as well as some works made for television, but not anything made for a TV series.
Broadly speaking, this list would comprise what I’d want to have on a desert island were it not for the fact that I’d want to bring along many other things that I haven’t already seen — including some of my more conspicuous omissions. No one who claims to have seen all possible candidates for the greatest films ever made could possibly be telling the truth, even in relation to a single year, and many of the exclusions here are things I haven’t yet caught up with. Many others are absent simply because I don’t value them as much as those I’ve included, and the most obvious limitation of this list is that it won’t be apparent in most cases whether I’ve excluded something because I haven’t seen it or because I don’t rank it highly enough. Read more