Tony Scott: top 5 best movies

As you’ve probably heard Tony Scott passed away this weekend reportedly committing suicide by jumping off a bridge in Los Angeles CA on Sunday.  It’s not really my place to comment on his death but rather his life and the legacy of movies he left behind.  After reviewing Tony Scott’s catalog something jumped out at me which was the amount of totally under-rated movies Scott directed.  This prompted me to put together a quick top 5 favorite Tony Scott films.

5. Top Gun: Whether you like it or not you can’t deny the pop-cultural impact Top Gun had on the world upon it’s release.  Not so much for my generation but for the one before me who were teenagers in the early 80’s.  Top Gun was a super movie before Michael Bay was making “super-movies” with that dose of humor and non stop action.  As over the top dumb this movie is (also oddly homoerotic; see Volleyball scene) this movie is a fun, quotable fast paced action flick that made Tom Cruise (pre-crazy) a star.

4. Enemy of The State:  This movie was oddly ahead of it’s time as far as the whole surveillance tactics and what’s possible from tracking cell phone to tons of other aspects  that relate to our current world post-patriot act.  Here Scott crafts a really intriguing espionage thriller in the vain of Francis Ford Coppola’s The Conversation (including the use of actor Gene Hackman), Alfred Hitchcock’s The Man Who Knew Too Much, and Sydney Pollack’s Three Days of the Condor.  Also boosting a young cast of up and coming actors like Will Smith, Jack Black, Jason Lee, Barry Pepper and so on.

3. Man on Fire:  This movie got mixed reviews at the box office but to me this is Tony Scott in total bad ass mode, using his own unique style to bring it to life.  It’s total revenge fantasy with Denzel at his action movie best with some inventive style that would be a staple in Scott’s career.  The impact of this film can be seen as far as an acclaimed video game “Max Payne 3” where the style and story feels extremely close to the style Scott exhibits with Man on Fire.

2. Crimson Tide:  An incredibly underrated movie with an iconic score, great story and another amazing cast assembled by Scott and his team.  Personally I remember seeing this movie alone on a bus from New York to Boston and making that bus trip so enjoyable because of how engaged I was with this flick.  Tarentino was brought in last minute to punch up some of the dialog (easy to spot) but it was Scott’s talent for racking up immense amounts of tension inside a nuclear submarine with the world on the brink of war that captures the audience.  Great flick.

1. True Romance. It’s a shame that most people consider this an Tarentino film because he wrote it, yet this film is really a triumph of a filmmaker’s particular style and arguably Tony Scott’s best directorial effort.  Again not enough can be said about the casting in this flick, Gary Oldman as Drexel is a personal favorite, Brad Pitt in a bit part as a stoner, Val Kilmer as Elvis, and Christopher Walken and Dennis Hopper in one of the greatest dialog showdowns in movie history.  This movie has substance and style and I’m drawn to it every time it’s one.  Tony Scott directed the shit outta this crime/romance/gangster flick.

When we die the only thing that’s left of us is the memories we’ve created and the impressions left on loved ones and the people around us.  I don’t know much about the man personally but I hope he left behind some happy memories for his loved one.  As for us; Tony Scott left behind some great films for movie fans that will be remembered for a long time, may he rest in peace.


~ by ATOM on August 23, 2012.

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