• 1. Raiders Of The Lost Ark

    “Spielberg’s technique may be too much for the genre: the opening sequence, set in South America, with Indy Jones entering a forbidden temple and fending off traps, snares, poisoned darts, tarantulas, stone doors with metal teeth, and the biggest damn boulder you’ve ever seen, is so thrill-packed you don’t have time to breatheor to enjoy yourself much, either.” - Pauline Kael, The New Yorker June 15, 1981

  • 2. The Godfather Part II

    “The only remarkable thing about Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather, Part II is the insistent manner in which it recalls how much better his original film was. Even if Part II were a lot more cohesive, revealing and exciting than it is, it probably would have run the risk of appearing to be the self-parody it now seems…Its insights are fairly lame at this point.”- Vincent Canby, New York Times, December 13, 1974

  • 3. BIG

    “Yet another comedy about a boy occupying a man’s body… While this is marginally better and more serious than most of the other movies in the cycle, the psychological ramifications of the change still aren’t very convincing…the overall premise is milked for some mild titillation involving the hero’s sexual innocence, making one wonder if the genre’s popularity might involve some deeply sublimated form of kiddie porn—arguably the distilled ideological essence of squeaky-clean Reaganism.”- Jonathan Rosenbaum, the Chicago Reader, October 26, 1985

  • 4. PSYCHO

    “…the experienced Hitchcock fan might reasonably expect the unreasonable… What is offered instead is merely gruesome. Little should be said of the plot…Director Hitchcock bears down too heavily in this one, and the delicate illusion of reality… becomes, instead, a spectacle of stomach-churning horror.”- Time Magazine, June 27, 1960

  • 5. Casablanca

    “Nothing short of an invasion could add much to Casablanca.”- Time Magazine, November 30, 1942

  • 6. Die Hard

    “The new Bruce Willis picture Die Hard is a logistical wonder, a marvel of engineering, and relentlessly, mercilessly thrilling… Add a percussive, big-star performance to the state-of-the-art mechanics, turn up all the knobs, and you’ve got a sure-fire, big-bucks, major-studio-style summer attraction. All that’s left is to light the fuse. So why am I not having fun?”- Hal Hinson, Washington Post, July 15, 1988

  • 7. Goodfellas

    “Simultaneously fascinating and repellent, Goodfellas is Martin Scorsese’s colorful but dramatically unsatisfying inside look at Mafia life in 1955 - 80 New York City.”- Joseph McBride, Variety, September 9, 1990

  • 8. The Shining

    “If you go to this adaptation of Stephen King’s novel expecting to see a horror movie, you’ll be disappointed. “…the setting is promising enough - an empty, isolated hotel in dead-of-winter Colorado - but Kubrick makes it warm, well-lit and devoid of threat.”- Time Out London Film Guide, 1980

  • 9. The Empire Strikes Back

    “Confession: When I went to see The Empire Strikes Back I found myself glancing at my watch. The Force is with us, indeed, and a lot of it is hot air. It’s a measure of my mixed feelings about The Empire Strikes Back that I’m not at all sure that I understand the plot.The Empire Strikes Back is about as personal as a Christmas card from a bank.”- Vincent Canby, New York Times, June 15, 1980

  • 10. The Shawshank Redemption

    “…the movie seems to last about half a life sentence…becomes incarcerated in its own labyrinthine sentimentality…And leave it to pandering, first-time director Frank Darabont to ensure no audience member leaves this film unsure of the ending. Heaven forbid a movie should end with a smidgen of mystery!”- Desson Howe, Washington Post, September 23, 1994