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December 04 2005

ABC Australia's My Favourite Film - Serenity at No. 38! The ABC asked viewers to vote for their favourite film of all time. Serenity clocked in at number 38, out of the 100 listed on the ABC website. Pretty damn fine, considering the competition!!

Again I'm a bad Whedonesquer, I saw this last night and didn't think to post it. Hey ZB!
WOW. fierce competition indeed. Serenity did quite well.

Most of the other 37 movies are on my personal top 50 list too.

[ edited by Harpy on 2005-12-05 04:34 ]
fierce competition indeed.

Indeed, competing against every film ever made is a tough field ;-)

I'm always suspicious of people who rank films from the current year as favourite of all time. Either they have a very narrow range of films they like - or they only started watching movies this year!

Serenity is better than a lot of the films on that list, though. It's an erratic top 100, to be honest - although that makes it seem more genuine. Amelie at #2 is quite a surprise - not because it shouldn't be there, but that it beat so many other well known and well loved films.

Only two films from this year, so at least the whole list isn't biased toward recent faves.
Personally, Serenity is my favorite film ever, but that's because I'm so attached to the universe and the characters (plus it's a very stunning picture), but Amelie is also one of my favorites and Memento and Donnie Darko would have to be up there too.
I voted for the Kill Bill volumes as my fave. Moulin Rouge comes in at second. And the Scream trilogy comes in at thrird.

Serenity was a great film but it just doesn't compare to some of my other favorites that I grew up with, and the new ones which I have learn to love.

Now if Joss made a Buffy movie...That might very well rank high on my list if he had creative freedom and directed it himself this time.
Kill Bill and Moulin Rouge, then Scream? Takes all sorts to make a world don't it? :)
Go Aussie Go! Just shows Joss Whedon was meant to be an Australian.
I watched it last night! great show, very interesting! I was surprised by Amelie, although I love the film it was quite high. I LOVE donnie Darko, so that was cool to see it up there.
and Serenity! I was really surprised then! Go Serenity!
Yea, I noticed all the ones I voted for made it in also. That was fun making up our lists. I was a Princess Bride and Brazil voter also, and I was surprised Brazil beat Serenity to be honest! My favourite sandwiching each other are Singing in the Rain and Clockwork Orange. It's almost like people will forever link one with the other. Well, that kinda made me smile.

Also, Wings of Desire was in there, another surprise, and another one I voted for. I don't even think that movie is available on DVD in Australia?

[ edited by nixygirl on 2005-12-05 08:26 ]
There is a difference between 'Top 10 BEST Films of All Time' and 'Top 10 Favourite Films of All Time'.

I think this list certainly reflected the latter, which in some ways is valid. Citizen Kane may certainly be considered Orson Welles' best film, but I'd MUCH rather watch 'Touch of Evil' (one of Orson's b-grade movies).

As for the recentness of the movies... unsurprising too. Film is a very movie.

So, yeah, LOTR really didn't surprise me; nor did many of the others, except Amelie.
There is a difference between 'Top 10 BEST Films of All Time' and 'Top 10 Favourite Films of All Time'.

Yes, and I don't think Serenity is the best movie of all time, but it's certainly one of the best in my book. I don't know how I'd rank it though. I'd have to remember all the movies I've ever seen. I have a hard enough time ranking 144 Buffy episodes, so I'm not even going to begin to make an attempt.
Hmmm, well i've seen a grand total of four of the films that place above Serenity (well, six if you were to count the LOTR trilogy seperately). Not much of a movie watcher, can you tell?

Slightly annoyed that the incredible Fifth Element didn't place a lot higher and where the hell was Die Hard??? Bad enough that it wasn't in the top 10 but not in the top 100? What is wrong with people today? ;)
Dancer in the Dark should've been on that list... oh my lovely Bjork, how I love you so...
aapac, have you seen Juniper Tree? Bjork's in that too. I want to know if it's worth renting.
As much as I loved Serenity, it's hard to say it's the best film ever, when that excludes so many other great films. Personally, although I think in time Serenity definitely deserves to be up there, the list strikes me as being a bit more based on which fanbases have added their votes or what films have been out recently.

For example the BBC did a big programme for weeks called the Big Read about the nation's favourite books, and Lord of the Rings won. I do like the books, but I didn't think they deserved to be that high, and I think a lot of that was honestly based on how people liked the films and how the films came out fairly recently. Had they held the same poll ten years ago I doubt it would have won.

I find it strange that they list the Lord of the Rings as a trilogy whereas the Star Wars films are seperate. Isn't that unfair? Also surprised to see A New Hope so high above Empire Strikes Back, which is very rare. I guess you Aussies must have eclectic tastes. ;)
I think it is hard to class Lord of the Rings as three seperate movies, given that they were created to tell one story, not to mention all three having been made at the same time.

Regular trilogies (or is that trilogys?) tend to be created one movie at a time, each telling one complete tale, even if said tale can be viewed as part of a larger whole. Star Wars can be enjoyed as it's own seperate story even if you never see Empire Strikes back or Return of the Jedi. Lord of the Rings, however, is a slightly different animal and is probably the only trilogy that actually has to be treated as a single film to be judged fairly.

As for the Big Read survey that the Beeb carried out, i do remember a lot of "experts" and "critics" at the time blasting the result, claiming that Lord of the Rings only achieved the top spot due to the movies. Obviously i can't speak for the country at large but i found that quite an annoying point of view. Maybe the movies did allow more people to enjoy the story but as someone who has read the trilogy over a dozen times and enjoyed it on every occasion, not to mention somebody who has many friends who have both read and loved Lord of the Rings and other works of Tolkien, i think it is extremely unfair to suggest that the books could not have made the top of the survey based on their own merit. I think that they would have stood just as good a chance had the movies never been made.
I do think they definitely would have been up there, I just personally don't think they are my favourite books ever, and I do think that they wouldn't have been quite as high if it hadn't have been for the movies. I don't mean to offend you or anything, it's just my point of view.

With Lord of the Rings, I agree it is difficult to watch TTT or RotK without having seen FotR and pick it up, but I sort of feel the same way about Star Wars. Even if they were made seperately, they still form part of the same story, and I think it would be almost as difficult to start watching say AotC or RotS without having seen TPM. I think even had they grouped the Original Trilogy as one choice and the prequels as another, it would have been fairer. Basically, apart from Lord of the Rings, they've listed every other film as a seperate film even if it isn't part of a series, which I think is affects the results.
Razor, your comment didn't offend me at all, that was simply your opinion. It was the extremely snobby and rude statements made by the supposed "experts" and "critics" i previously mentioned on the show at the time that i found offensive. There were comments made that were extremely disrespectful to Tolkien's work, effectively dismissing it's rightful place at the top. It's one thing to believe another book should have been in the number one spot but it's entirely another to disrespect such a beloved book, which was what many people did at the time. A real shame.
claiming that Lord of the Rings only achieved the top spot due to the movies.

I'm fairly certain that LOTR topped several populist "favourite book" lists prior to the films ever being made - many years before, actually. Which is why the movies were already a phenomenon before "Fellowship" was even released: a lot of people had fond memories of the novel(s) and Jackson had a lot to live up to, beyond the obsessive Tolkien lovers.

I'm a little disappointed (and surprised) that my favourite film "The Silence of the Lambs" didn't make the Top 100.
Unconventional choice, Keith G. No kidding, it's your favorite? Of all time? Would you kindly oblige me and elaborate on the 'film' thread over on

I'm just really curious as to the why of that.
Personally, although I think in time Serenity definitely deserves to be up there, the list strikes me as being a bit more based on which fanbases have added their votes or what films have been out recently.

I gotta disagree with you there. I thought for the most part the list was rather eclectic. A great mix of choices, and few that were current releases. I know when we were all first looking at it on Sen Oz, most were in agreeance that altho, Serenity was most definately within our top ten, that it was hard to rate as number 1.
I would say Serenity was in my top 5, more to do with the experiences surrounding the film than the actual film. In fact when compiling my list a good half of them were foreign subtitled films, and with that a large proportion were French and Asian.
I think it's a terrific Top 100 too, nixygirl. I'd probably disagree most with the Top 10 - if I could even put together an all-time top ten of films in my mind. But as a "popular" list, I think it rocks. I mean, many many of my faves are there:

Blade Runner, Casablanca, Eternal Sunshine . . ., Life of Brian, Singin' in the Rain, Withnail and I, Some Like it Hot, Brazil, Harold and Maude, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Cabaret etc. etc.

I could tweak it sure, certainly I'd include more musicals, foreign language, and classics (although each of those categories is well represented), and I'd chuck out, say, Moulin Rouge, American Beauty, Out of Africa, Forrest Gump and that Lock, Stock nonsense, but any list that has Lost in Translation and Local Hero and Picnic at Hanging Rock(even given it's an Aussie list), and Spirited Away - well, wow. Hats off to the antipodeans.
I also enjoyed the list. There are some fun, unconventional choices (which is what I'd expect from a "favorites" list as opposed to, say, a critics' pick of best movies ever made). For the most part, I really liked, and was occasionally very surprised by, the movies that made it. And there were a couple I'd never heard of ("Withnail and I" at #28? I have no clue what it is).
But it was fun seeing ones like Spinal Tap, Picnic at Hanging Rock, Room with a View, The Piano, Eternal Sunshine, etc in with some of the more conventional choices like Rear Window, the Godfather, and Breakfast at Tiffany's (which I also love). I notice all the Baz Luhrman (sp?) movies are on there - not surprising, as an Aussie list, I suppose. And I'd certainly do away with a few (Pirates of the Caribbean? Chocolat?), but for the most part it's fun, and kind of refreshing to see Citizen Kane (brilliant though it is, and I DO love it) down at 92).

SNT, What's Local Hero? That's another of the few movies on the list I've never seen or heard of.
Would you kindly oblige me and elaborate on the 'film' thread over on

Happily, Willowy. Composing a post over there now...
acp, Local Hero is a lyrical and beautifully low-key movie by Bill Forsyth (who made another of my favorites, Gregory's Girl) set in a small community in Scotland that has been chosen for oil exploration by an American billionaire (a lovely cameo by Burt Lancaster). The plot is less the point than the atmosphere and cast of characters. Rent it with a nice bottle of wine, and a delightful evening is guaranteed.

And Withnail and I is a riot - two unemployed actors in the late 60s leave London for the country cottage of Uncle Monty. Hilarity ensues. Again, it's not so much what happens as how it happens. And it's full of brilliant lines, delivered by Richard E. Grant (recently starring on stage with Tony Head) in a killer performance. You'll love it.
Great, I'll stick 'em both in my (already far too long) Netflix queue!
Oh yea SNT has got those movies down pat. Local Hero was in my top ten. It's such a favorite of mine.
Be sure and get them out acp.
Also try Wings of Desire while your at it. It's a German movie about two Angels that walk around Berlin listening to the thoughts of man, and inspiring them, until one Angel falls in love with a human. Peter Falk has a great role in the film playing himself, and the sequel is a treat also.

Yes, Hollywood butchered it up in remaking it with Nicholas Cage, but that was a shallow, devoid of heart movie, with a sad cliche ending. I just hated what they did to this piece of art! I'm also warily looking at what Tom Cruise is intending to do with The Eye! The Eye to me is the perfect horror movie, and should be respected not remade!
Fight Club at #10! Woo hooo! I'm not alone. :)
Gotta add my voice to the Withnail & I appreciation. I think it's the funniest film I've ever seen. It's the only film I can remember laughing more on the 4th time watching it than the 1st and it still gives me pains from laughing so much every time I watch it. I'm also very impressed by this list, very few recent films clogging it up (which always seems to happen with any poll of this sort over here).
I can see by this thread that I'm going to have to get Netflix. (sigh) More money to pay out each month...
Hey, SNT -- Thanks for the tip of the hat to "Local Hero", but one should add that's also kind of a lowkey screwball comedy. Yeah, it's lyrical, but it's also got plenty of gigles.

Definitely one of my favorite movies of the 1980s. Not sure how I'd rank it overall. Guess it would make my top 100 (though lists are kind of a hate/not hate matter for me).

I'm a super movie geek though, so these lists always annoy me and I'm going to sort of take what you guys say on faith. I always feel these lits are they're too weighted toward recent films...and I define "recent" as anything made after 1975! Still, sounds like it's not the worst of these, though the continued "greatness" of certain films in the popular mind. I mean, I found lots to like, and lots to dislike, in "Fight Club" but it kind of shocks me that so many choose it as their all time favorite.

Frankly, much as I enjoyed "Serenity," not sure it would make my personal top 100 except as a sentimental choice. But then I've seen A LOT of movies. (And "Firefly" is probably my all time favorite TV series...though for "greatest" I might choose "The Sopranos" or "The Prisoner", but "Firefly" is way, way up there and I'm sure Joss has at least one true movie classic in him, too. Just not yet.)
So, anyway ... is it just me or is anyone else really surprised that Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie didn't make it into the top ten of this list?


... Just me then? :)
Bobster, as ever you're absolutely right - Local Hero is definitely very funny in a screwball-y kind of way.

And I hear you about the predominance of recent movies in these lists - what delighted me about this one was the range of genres featured, and the inclusion of films I still think of as "cult," no matter how watched they are in my household.

I've still never seen Fight Club . . . and, alas, Serenity wouldn't make it into my entirely theoretical Top 25. Still, I've seen it 5 times, and am looking forward to seeing it more on DVD, so that must count for something. :)

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