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Ralph Ziman’s Top Ten Films of All Time

Have you ever wondered what are the films that inspire visionary directors of our time? As part of our monthly IONCINEPHILE profile, we ask the filmmaker the incredibly arduous task of identifying their top ten list of all time favorite films. This June we profile Ralph Ziman who will see his third film, Gangster’s Paradise: Jerusalema receive a limited release in New York, Los Angeles and Houston on June 11th. Here’s his Top 10 as of June 2010.

Have you ever wondered what are the films that inspire visionary directors of our time? As part of our monthly IONCINEPHILE profile (read here), we ask the filmmaker the incredibly arduous task of identifying their top ten list of all time favorite films. This June we profile Ralph Ziman who will see his third film, Gangster’s Paradise: Jerusalema receive a limited release in New York, Los Angeles and Houston on June 11th via Anchor Bay Ent. Here’s his Top 10 as of June 2010.

Apocalypse Now – Francis Ford Coppola (1979)
“War is hell. Coppola’s masterpiece. Saw it when it came out. It was mind blowing.”

 

A Clockwork Orange – Stanley Kubrick (1971)
“Stanley Kubrick at his best. Perverse, insane, and technically brilliant.”

 

Das Boot – Wolfgang Petersen (1981)
“Made me understand how war affects the people who fight it. Claustrophobic and masterful. So cinematic, yet shot in such a small environment.”

 

Heat – Michael Mann (1995)
“Filmmaking high octane at its best. Visceral, electric and involving. Great cast of characters and amazing central performances.”

 

If… – Lindsay Anderson (1968)
“Classic British film from the 60’s. Subversive, irreverent. Malcolm McDowell is compelling. Lindsay Anderson’s finest moment.”

 

The Insider – Michael Mann (1999)
“The best I’ve ever seen Russell Crowe. Involving. Great inner turmoil and landscape.”

 

The Kid – Charlie Chaplin (1921)
“I love Charlie Chaplin. I watched all his films as a child. The Kid is funny, but incredibly moving.”

 

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Milos Forman (1975)
“Hilarious, tragic, moving, subversive. Great performances from Jack Nicholson. No matter how many times I see this film I keep hoping it will end differently.”

 

Sunset Blvd. – Billy Wilder (1950)
“Classic. Visually enticing, seductive black and white photography. I always find myself pulled into this world and hoping against hope that the outcome will be different.”

 

Taxi Driver – Martin Scorsese (1976)
“Robert De Niro as Travis Bickle is the best he’s ever been. Found the film to be repulsive and compelling at the same time.”

 

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Eric Lavallée is the founder, CEO, editor-in-chief, film journalist, and critic at IONCINEMA.com, established in 2000. A regular at Sundance, Cannes, and Venice, Eric holds a BFA in film studies from the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. In 2013, he served on the narrative competition jury at the SXSW Film Festival. He was an associate producer on Mark Jackson’s "This Teacher" (2018 LA Film Festival, 2018 BFI London). In 2022, he was a New Flesh Juror for Best First Feature at the Fantasia International Film Festival. Current top films for 2023 include The Zone of Interest (Glazer), Inside the Yellow Cocoon Shell (Pham Thien An), Totem (Lila Avilés), La Chimera (Alice Rohrwacher), All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt (Raven Jackson).

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