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Taking a subject matter that the Hollywood of the time wouldn’t touch with a barge-pole, the tensions within a black family arising when a young woman (Leila Goldoni) starts dating white men - Cassavetes ignores all the tricks of the mainstream to jazz up (literally) his simple story, instead opting for an almost home movie approach where you are allowed to get under the skin of the central character.It may seem somewhat dated now but as both a document of late '50s Bohemian New York and the birth of American indie, this is essential.: Quentin Tarantino A modern noir classic, Reservoir Dogs announced Quentin Tarantino to the world in a spray of blood, severed ears and Mexican stand-offs.The plotting is as tight as anything since Spade’s days of gumshoeing, but it was the needle-jab dialogue that made us fall instantly in love with QT.And since he was, until the arrival of John Singleton at least, the only major African-American director in Hollywood, that's an important perspective to have.
Employing every camera trick, and angle, known to man, not to mention a raft of great sound effects, editing tricks and, in leading man Campbell, the greatest effect of them all, Raimi’s horror-comedy classic (note that running order; Evil Dead II is as jump-scary as it is hilarious) is enormously influential.This roll of honour celebrates both, as well as some of the names that didn't achieve the acclaim they deserve. OK, maybe forget the last one, and replace it with Mean Streets which, to this day, remains probably Scorsese's most personal and powerful work.A strange mixture of seedy violence, frank nudity and the sort of language you'd expect to hear from gangsters in New York's Little Italy, the film is nonetheless drenched in a veil of Catholic guilt (lead Harvey Keitel, as Charlie, a small-time hood who knows that he should get the hell out of the game, constantly chastises and tests himself) and seems to act as a permanent celluloid confessional for Scorsese's baser instincts.For this alone, this gritty Lower East Side drama would be worth noting, but it's also shot through with hints of Scorsese's virtuosity (the wonderful pop-infused soundtrack and the scene where a drunk Keitel teeters through a bar in one disorienting shot), and tantalising glimpses of his future preoccupations: gangsters, the mores of masculinity and a rich and varied partnership with one Mr. De Niro, so magnetic here as wildcard wiseguy Johnny Boy.It’s strange to think that with a quirk of casting it could have been Jon Voight joining the ranks of the mooks.
Since its arrival, however, more than one generation has had its eyes opened to the long-snubbed world of moviemaking's outsiders, be it American mavericks, foreign actioners, or just plain old B pictures.