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Movie Mom

The 100 Best First Films

posted by Nell Minow

The Online Film Critics Society has published our list of the 100 best FIRST films. Number one is, of course, “Citizen Kane,” which usually tops the list of best films in any category. The list includes some neglected gems by directors who went on to make more widely lauded films as well as “L’Atlante by Jean Vigo, who made only one full-length feature before he died at 29, and “Night of the the Hunter,” the only film directed by distinguished actor Charles Laughton. The Pixar stars are there, with John Lasseter of “Toy Story” and Pete Docter of “Monsters, Inc.” And there are critic’s favorites like Terrence Malick (“Badlands”) and audience favorites like Jerry Zucker, Jim Abrahams, David Zucker (“Airplane!”). Steven Spielberg is remembered for his low-budget TV film “Duel,” still a spine-tingler, about an ordinary man inexplicably hounded by a mysterious truck driver. The list includes classics from the earliest days of cinema (Charlie Chaplin for “The Kid”) and up-to-the-minute stars like Rian Johnson (“Brick”) and Neill Blomkamp (“District 9″). It has documentarians (Errol Morris of “Gates of Heaven”) and mockumentarians (Rob Reiner for “This is Spinal Tap”). Like all “best” lists, it will provoke arguments, but like just about all best movie lists, everything on it is worth a look.

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