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Pa­cif­ic (2009)

The idea of a “doc­u­men­tary” made ex­clu­sive­ly of im­ages filmed by the par­tic­i­pants them­selves is ac­tu­al­ly quite clever once we re­al­ize that the re­sult ends up doc­u­ment­ing some­thing else, not need­ing any ef­fort to arouse a most gen­uine feel­ing of sec­ond­hand em­bar­rass­ment in us view­ers.

The Pa­cif­ic (2010)

While Band of Broth­ers had a very well-struc­tured nar­ra­tive, this sec­ond war minis­eries is not so flu­id, fo­cus­ing on three marines who bare­ly meet — in fact, two of them briefly do but in a con­text that does­n’t add much. Be­sides, the bat­tle of Guadal­canal feels in­cred­i­bly re­duced while a ma­jor one like Iwo Jima is left to not more than ten min­utes in a lat­er episode. Even so, the re­sult is as­ton­ish­ing, a very in­tense and pow­er­ful ten-episode pro­duc­tion that dives into the minds and souls of sol­diers to show the ef­fect of war on their lives.

Pa­cif­ic Rim (2013)

A daz­zling vi­su­al spec­ta­cle that com­bines top-notch vi­su­al ef­fects with a lot of fun in a way that should make any Michael Bay ashamed — and Del Toro em­ploys a large depth of field for most of the movie, which makes it look amaz­ing in IMAX 3D, even if it is con­vert­ed.

Pa­cif­ic Rim: Up­ris­ing (2018)

De­spite the fact that most of the sec­ondary char­ac­ters (name­ly the cadets) are so poor­ly de­vel­oped (hell, I could­n’t make any dis­tinc­tion be­tween them), this de­cent (yet un­nec­es­sary) se­quel re­lies on a sol­id struc­ture and has enough ur­gency to hold us on the edge of our seats.

The Pack (2015)

It’s near­ly im­pos­si­ble to find any re­deem­ing qual­i­ty in this ridicu­lous movie that nev­er man­ages to be tense and is cen­tered on a fam­i­ly of com­plete id­iots (who we could­n’t give a damn about) as they get sur­round­ed by a pack of dogs that are far more in­tel­li­gent than they are.

The Pact (2012)

The mys­tery is com­pelling and holds the sto­ry to­geth­er in an ef­fi­cient way be­fore the last twen­ty min­utes (which are very tense), even though there is no pact to be seen (can a movie ti­tle get more gener­ic and lazier than this?) and the di­rec­tion is so an­noy­ing­ly full of clichés.

Padding­ton (2014)

The kind of pass­able fam­i­ly movie that seems des­tined to be rel­e­gat­ed to tele­vi­sion every year on Christ­mas, giv­en how harm­less and sat­is­fied with lit­tle it is, which can be seen from its sil­ly hu­mor and Nicole Kid­man play­ing a car­toon­ish, Cruel­la de Vil-like vil­lain.

The Paint­ed Veil (1934)

Gar­bo is such a mar­vel to be­hold, so cap­ti­vat­ing that she does­n’t need any ef­fort to make us for­give her char­ac­ter’s sins, while the sol­id script and el­e­gant di­a­logue al­ways let us un­der­stand her mo­ti­va­tions, even though the con­clu­sion comes a bit fast and sud­den.

The Paint­ed Veil (2006)

The cin­e­matog­ra­phy is stun­ning, while Watts’ and Nor­ton’s out­stand­ing per­for­mances el­e­vate this ab­sorb­ing ma­te­r­i­al into a tru­ly mem­o­rable ex­pe­ri­ence, as they give shape to com­plex char­ac­ters in an ex­treme­ly en­gag­ing dra­ma about re­sent­ment, for­give­ness and love.

Paisan (1946)

Am­a­teur­ish act­ing, ter­ri­ble dub­bing and film­ing er­rors apart, this is a riv­et­ing ex­am­ple of ciné­ma vérité cen­tered on many cul­tur­al dif­fer­ences en­coun­tered dur­ing the lib­er­a­tion of Italy by the Al­lied forces, yet al­though the first three sto­ries are sub­lime, the last three are not so ef­fi­cient.

A Paixão de JL (2015)

By let­ting his sub­ject ‘speak’ freely with­out any sort of in­ter­fer­ence and only il­lus­trat­ing Leonil­son’s thoughts and feel­ings most­ly through his art and some film ex­cerpts, Nad­er ac­com­plish­es some­thing much more ma­ture, poignant and heart­break­ing than his pre­vi­ous works.

Palo Alto (2013)

The me­an­der­ing qual­i­ty of the film’s plot (which may put most view­ers off) is in fact what I like the most about it, while the sol­id per­for­mances, nice cin­e­matog­ra­phy and Gia Cop­po­la’s firm di­rec­tion help make this a sol­id de­but for her as a film­mak­er.

Pan-Cin­e­ma Per­ma­nente (2008)

I can see that every­one in­volved in the mak­ing of this film want­ed to cre­ate some­thing as po­et­ic as its sub­ject — a dear friend and tal­ent­ed artist who had a most ec­cen­tric and con­ta­gious spir­it — but for any­one else the re­sult may feel dis­tant and not so sat­is­fy­ing­ly able to probe into who he was.

Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)

Del Toro cre­ates a mag­nif­i­cent fairy tale for grown-ups in which the in­no­cence of fan­ta­sy col­lides with the hor­rors of war — and the re­sult is a dev­as­tat­ing, poignant and un­for­get­table film of lyri­cal beau­ty, with as­ton­ish­ing vi­su­als, great per­for­mances and a won­der­ful score.

Pa­per Towns (2015)

The plot is for­mu­la­ic and the per­for­mances gen­er­al­ly weak — es­pe­cial­ly from the ac­tors play­ing Quentin’s friends, who are also more an­noy­ing than they should be -, but the film is sin­cere and has one of the most ma­ture end­ings to come out from a young adult sto­ry in re­cent years.

The Pa­per­boy (2012)

It looks and feels like some­thing made in the 1970s but with a sor­did qual­i­ty that makes it so ab­surd­ly hi­lar­i­ous in all its filthy non­sense — thanks also to a ter­rif­ic per­for­mance by Nicole Kid­man as the trashy South­ern blonde, who steals every scene she ap­pears in.

Pa­pil­lon (1973)

With an ex­cel­lent per­for­mance by Steve Mc­Queen and a stun­ning cin­e­matog­ra­phy that em­ploys a large depth of field to ex­plore the set­ting and thus the grav­i­ty of the sit­u­a­tion, this com­pelling prison film works so very well de­spite los­ing some of its cred­i­bil­i­ty in the third act.

The Pa­rade (2011)

A pa­rade of clichés and stereo­types clear­ly con­ceived by a (well-in­ten­tioned) straight man, but ap­par­ent­ly this must be the only type of movie that could bring such a nice mes­sage to a larg­er au­di­ence in a strong­ly ho­mo­pho­bic coun­try like Ser­bia, so points for that too.

Par­adise Lost: The Child Mur­ders at Robin Hood Hills (1996)

A hard-hit­ting doc­u­men­tary that ex­pos­es the hor­ren­dous flaws of a jus­tice sys­tem that can con­vict some­one with­out any strong ev­i­dence based only on as­sump­tions made by a jury of peers who have no in­struc­tion and are in­ca­pable of judg­ing the case in an ob­jec­tive way.

Par­adise Lost 2: Rev­e­la­tions (2000)

A bit rep­e­ti­tious with so many clips from the first movie, but still it is re­as­sur­ing how it shows that there are sup­port­ive peo­ple will­ing to help the de­fen­dants prove their in­no­cence for free, as well as the irony of as­sum­ing that some­one else is guilty be­cause of his ap­pear­ance.

Par­adise Lost 3: Pur­ga­to­ry (2011)

Even though the first half seems more like a re­cap of the pre­vi­ous two movies, this is a well-struc­tured and ob­jec­tive doc­u­men­tary that shows us what “be­yond any rea­son­able doubt” should mean in a place where peo­ple can’t let go of their own pre­con­ceived opin­ions.

Paraguayan Ham­mock (2006)

A fas­ci­nat­ing (and sim­ple) way to tell a sad, touch­ing sto­ry, us­ing long sta­t­ic shots of the cou­ple’s dai­ly life as a vi­su­al an­chor for ex­tradiegetic di­a­logue and at­mos­pher­ic back­ground sounds (the for­est and the rain) — all done through an out­stand­ing, im­mer­sive sound work.

Par­al­lels (2015)

I would have loved to see this as the back­door pi­lot of a Slid­ers-like TV se­ries as it was orig­i­nal­ly in­tend­ed, but as a stand­alone movie, de­spite a nice sense of hu­mor, it has bla­tant prob­lems in struc­ture and a poor­ly-con­ceived, bad­ly-de­vel­oped con­cept that leaves too much unan­swered.

Para­nor­mal Ac­tiv­i­ty (2007)

The idea may be in­ter­est­ing even if to­tal­ly un­o­rig­i­nal, while the sto­ry is de­vel­oped well in a care­ful pace. Still, the movie feels like a mere sil­ly trick to scare the au­di­ence and noth­ing else, even if it is­n’t scary or in­trigu­ing.

Para­nor­mal Ac­tiv­i­ty 2 (2010)

A su­pe­ri­or and scari­er se­quel (pre­quel ac­tu­al­ly) that serves best as an ex­am­ple of what the first movie should have been but was­n’t, giv­en that, con­trary to the sil­ly sheet tricks of that one, we’re of­fered this time a more in­ter­est­ing de­vel­op­ment of the para­nor­mal ac­tiv­i­ty.

Para­nor­mal Ac­tiv­i­ty 3 (2011)

A dull and ob­vi­ous pre­quel with a pre­dictable pa­per-thin plot that reuses the same old un­scary sheet tricks of the first movie and even has a guy — stub­born to the point of stu­pid­i­ty — car­ry­ing a cam­era for much longer af­ter good sense would have made him drop it.

Para­Nor­man (2012)

The su­perb an­i­ma­tion com­bines 3D stop-mo­tion and CGI ef­fects into a daz­zling vi­su­al spec­ta­cle, but the plot drags with ir­reg­u­lar pac­ing and only oc­ca­sion­al fun­ny jokes. The re­sult is an av­er­age ex­pe­ri­ence that ends with a clichéd mes­sage about how bul­ly­ing is bad.

Paris 05:59 (Théo & Hugo) (2016)

The two ac­tors are good and have a pow­er­ful chem­istry to­geth­er (es­pe­cial­ly in the re­mark­ably in­tense ini­tial se­quence), but what the film mis­takes for au­then­tic­i­ty is in fact a lot of ar­ti­fi­cial and painful­ly the­atri­cal di­a­logue that un­for­tu­nate­ly di­lutes their on­screen pres­ence.

Paris Is Burn­ing (1990)

As a re­veal­ing (and sad) por­trait of this sub­cul­ture of the 1980s, the film doc­u­ments the balls, the “hous­es,” “vogu­ing” and a “re­al­ness” com­pe­ti­tion that rais­es some fas­ci­nat­ing ques­tions about what real means (gay men even ap­pear teach­ing women to be­have like “real” women).

Paris-Man­hat­tan (2012)

A ro­man­tic com­e­dy that is not ro­man­tic nor fun­ny; in­stead, it is sil­ly and un­in­ter­est­ing in the same pro­por­tion — and not even an adorable cameo by Woody Allen him­self is able to lift this movie from be­ing mere­ly or­di­nary.

Paris, Texas (1984)

While de­cep­tive­ly sim­ple on the sur­face, this is a mas­ter­ful ex­am­ple of screen­writ­ing and sto­ry­telling that finds truth and po­et­ry in the mun­dane and is cen­tered on the kind of qui­et­ly nu­anced char­ac­ters that I guess any ac­tor or ac­tress would love to play once in their lives.

Parisi­enne (2015)

This is cer­tain­ly an au­then­tic por­trait of life in Paris for a young Lebanese im­mi­grant try­ing to find her path in a for­eign city, but the film also starts to feel a bit repet­i­tive af­ter a while and does­n’t of­fer much in terms of nar­ra­tive to stand out and be­come mem­o­rable.

Par­ti­cle Fever (2013)

For those like me with a back­ground in physics and/or up to date on the sub­ject, this doc won’t of­fer much and will even prove to be a bit rep­e­ti­tious (and dull), as it wastes too much time on emo­tions in­stead of talk­ing sci­ence, thus more rec­om­mend­ed for the unini­ti­at­ed than ex­perts.

The Par­ty (1968)

A large­ly im­pro­vised slap­stick com­e­dy that has no ac­tu­al plot, only a se­ries of ran­dom sit­u­a­tions re­ly­ing on Pe­ter Sell­er­s’s ca­pac­i­ty for mak­ing us laugh with most­ly phys­i­cal gags, and as such it man­ages to be fun­ny at times, where­as more of­ten it can be just sil­ly in­stead.

The Par­ty (2017)

High­ly en­gag­ing, fast-paced and with great per­for­mances (es­pe­cial­ly Tim­o­thy Spall and Cil­lian Mur­phy, who are hi­lar­i­ous), this smart com­e­dy has some very fun­ny mo­ments and nev­er out­stays its wel­come, sur­pris­ing us with a well-writ­ten di­a­logue and de­li­cious twists.

El Pasa­do (2007)

I like Baben­co’s di­rec­tion (de­spite the ir­reg­u­lar pac­ing) and the film’s score and per­for­mances, but this sto­ry about a man sur­round­ed by mad women is too puz­zling and im­plau­si­ble in the end, when we only feel like it does­n’t have that much to say about re­la­tion­ships af­ter all.

Pas­sen­gers (2016)

Full of the worst clichés you can think of, ex­pos­i­to­ry di­a­logue and cheesy ref­er­ences (even to The Shin­ing, for no good rea­son), this is an im­moral and hor­ri­bly corny lit­tle ro­mance that wants us to feel sym­pa­thy to­wards a self­ish bas­tard as he proves to a woman that he will be the “best” thing for her.

Pas­sion (2012)

For the most part, this is a sol­id thriller whose tech­ni­cal bril­liance (main­ly the fan­tas­tic art di­rec­tion, mise-en-scène, cin­e­matog­ra­phy, edit­ing and score) is no sur­prise for a Bri­an De Pal­ma movie. It is just too bad though that the sto­ry col­laps­es in such a ridicu­lous, in­co­her­ent end.

The Pas­sion of Joan of Arc (1928)

Baf­fling us with spec­tac­u­lar vi­su­als and one of the most mag­nif­i­cent per­for­mances in the his­to­ry of Cin­e­ma, it is near­ly un­be­liev­able how Drey­er made such a stun­ning mas­ter­piece sole­ly from re­ject­ed ma­te­r­i­al af­ter his orig­i­nal mas­ter print had been ac­ci­den­tal­ly de­stroyed.

The Past (2013)

Farha­di proves again that he is one of the great­est sto­ry­tellers nowa­days to shape nu­anced, three-di­men­sion­al char­ac­ters, mak­ing it im­pos­si­ble for us to take sides or judge any of them — and his won­der­ful last scene, filmed in one long take, is of ex­tra­or­di­nary sen­si­bil­i­ty.

Patch Adams (1998)

A pa­thet­ic tear­jerk­er that tries to make us cry at all costs with every sort of cheap nar­ra­tive and ma­nip­u­la­tion, not even re­al­iz­ing how in­sult­ing it is with Robin Williams play­ing a clown­ish re­tard who is sup­posed to be some kind of hap­pi­ness hero for the piti­ful ones.

Pa­ter­son (2016)

Adam Dri­ver de­liv­ers a sen­si­tive per­for­mance in this in­tel­li­gent char­ac­ter study that shows us a week in the life of a man liv­ing a melan­choly ex­is­tence, and it is great to see how Jar­musch uses black-and-white pat­terns to un­der­line the char­ac­ter’s or­di­nary rou­tine.

Pather Pan­chali (1955)

An im­pres­sive achieve­ment con­sid­er­ing that this was Ray’s first film, and he dis­plays an enor­mous con­fi­dence in the di­rec­tion of this hyp­no­tiz­ing and re­al­is­tic look into the life of a Ben­gali fam­i­ly strug­gling with pover­ty as wit­nessed by the eyes of an eight year-old boy.

Paths of Glo­ry (1957)

Kubrick­’s best de­pic­tion of the bru­tal and de­hu­man­iz­ing face of war, it not only of­fers ex­cel­lent per­for­mances, an ex­quis­ite cin­e­matog­ra­phy and an in­tense­ly ab­sorb­ing di­a­logue, but ends with an es­pe­cial­ly beau­ti­ful (and thought-pro­vok­ing) last scene.

Pa­trik, Age 1.5 (2008)

A sen­si­tive and heart­warm­ing dra­ma that could have been eas­i­ly filled with clichés and turned into a melo­dra­ma but is wise in­stead to de­vel­op its sto­ry in an al­ways be­liev­able and sin­cere way, re­ly­ing also on two adorable per­for­mances by Skars­gård and Ljung­man.

Paul (2011)

Pegg and Frost join Seth Ro­gen and Greg Mot­to­la in this hi­lar­i­ous geek com­e­dy that is also sur­pris­ing­ly full of ac­tion. The script is very smart, with many well-in­spired ref­er­ences, and it finds a per­fect bal­ance be­tween the hu­mor of Shaun of the Dead and Su­per­bad.

Pawn Sac­ri­fice (2014)

It is dull, for­mu­la­ic and di­rect­ed in such a mediocre way (hell, even Zwick­’s sense of ge­og­ra­phy is ter­ri­ble) that there is no plea­sure in go­ing through this plod­ding plot so full of clichés and aw­ful di­a­logue just to fi­nal­ly get to a tense cli­max that saves the film from be­ing a dis­as­ter.

The Pearl But­ton (2015)

The ram­bling na­ture of Guzmán’s po­et­ic di­gres­sions makes this film frus­trat­ing de­spite his sen­si­tive in­ten­tions, and so it seems more like a mixed bag of cheesy es­o­teric as­ser­tions about wa­ter and ran­dom mus­ings on in­dige­nous peo­ple, dic­ta­tor­ships, pearl but­tons and su­per­novas.

Peep­ing Tom (1960)

Ex­treme­ly bold and per­verse for the time it came out (as it was the first film to put us in the per­spec­tive of a se­r­i­al killer), this is a work of great psy­cho­log­i­cal depth that dives into the dark cor­ners of misog­y­ny and voyeurism while mak­ing us sym­pa­thet­ic to­wards its sick pro­tag­o­nist.

The Pel­i­can Brief (1993)

With so much hap­pen­ing on screen for a bloat­ed run­ning time of 141 min­utes, it is easy to over­look the count­less in­con­sis­ten­cies and stu­pidi­ties of this half-baked con­spir­a­cy thriller that be­lieves to be pret­ty clever but is filled with pa­per-thin char­ac­ters who rarely be­have smart­ly.

Pen­du­lar (2017)

An­chored in two great cen­tral per­for­mances, it ex­plores and un­der­stands the po­et­ic beau­ty of hu­man shapes and move­ments, of­fer­ing a del­i­cate look full of in­ti­ma­cy and in­ten­si­ty into the com­plex re­la­tion­ship be­tween a cou­ple of artists.

Pene­lope (2006)

It seems a bit ridicu­lous that a pig nose could cause peo­ple to cringe in hor­ror and jump out of win­dows (es­pe­cial­ly con­sid­er­ing the amount of ugly peo­ple in this world), but this de­cent lit­tle fa­ble-like com­e­dy has a sweet moral mes­sage and makes the best of a sim­ple idea.

Pen­guins of Mada­gas­car (2014)

A very amus­ing spin-off cen­tered on the very most adorable char­ac­ters of the Mada­gas­car fran­chise — which, com­bined with a well-writ­ten plot, hi­lar­i­ous puns, a stun­ning Pixar-lev­el an­i­ma­tion and even a hi­lar­i­ous Wern­er Her­zog nar­ra­tion, makes for a much su­pe­ri­or ex­pe­ri­ence.

Peões (2004)

Form­ing a per­fect com­pan­ion piece to En­treatos, which also came out in 2004 and fol­lowed Lu­la’s pres­i­den­tial cam­paign when he was first elect­ed pres­i­dent of Brazil, Coutin­ho’s film looks in­stead at the past and es­pe­cial­ly the un­known work­ers who made his­to­ry with their brav­ery.

Pepe Mu­ji­ca: Lessons from the Flowerbed (2014)

A con­tem­pla­tive project that sets out to doc­u­ment the sim­ple life and mus­ings of a hum­ble pop­ulist pres­i­dent who should be fol­lowed as an ex­am­ple by every na­tion leader any­where out there. Still, de­spite its in­spir­ing sub­ject, the film does­n’t of­fer much else be­yond that.

Per­cy Jack­son & the Olympians: The Light­ning Thief (2010)

This en­joy­able and harm­less ad­ven­ture di­rect­ed by Chris Colum­bus is en­ter­tain­ing enough as it makes nice ref­er­ences to Greek Mythol­o­gy gods and crea­tures, and it fea­tures a very amus­ing per­for­mance by Uma Thur­man as the Medusa.

Per­di­da (2018)

With a messy, ridicu­lous plot full of clichés and non­sen­si­cal twists that mean ab­solute­ly noth­ing once you stop to think about them for more than ten sec­onds, this sim­ply re­mains an­oth­er ex­am­ple of Netflix’s nev­er-end­ing in­cli­na­tion for dumb movies and quan­ti­ty over qual­i­ty.

A Per­fect Get­away (2009)

At first, this movie seems to be a trashy com­e­dy due to the strange char­ac­ters and goofy di­a­logue, but then af­ter its first hour it evolves into an above-av­er­age thriller, sur­pris­ing­ly good and smarter than most slash­er movies re­leased in re­cent years.

Per­fect Sense (2011)

In­ex­plic­a­bly bashed by many crit­ics, this is a sur­pris­ing­ly op­ti­mistic and vivid take on the overused apoc­a­lyp­tic sce­nario. An hon­est ro­mance that is re­al­ly touch­ing and beau­ti­ful, even if some­times the styl­ized di­rec­tion and some in­vol­un­tar­i­ly fun­ny scenes stand in the way.

The Per­fect Storm (2000)

It is a shame how this movie turns a real night­mare into a dull Hol­ly­wood spec­ta­cle full of vi­su­al ef­fects but with lit­tle char­ac­ter de­vel­op­ment, and it even makes the biggest mis­take of show­ing more peo­ple caught in the storm in­stead of only fo­cus­ing on the crew of the An­drea Gail.

The Per­fec­tion (2018)

Af­ter a thrilling and gen­uine­ly sur­pris­ing first half, I can only feel im­mense­ly frus­trat­ed and dis­ap­point­ed to see this movie col­lapse into such com­plete stu­pid­i­ty and non­sense with a lot of ridicu­lous ex­po­si­tion and lame twists that man­age to be dumb­er by the minute.

Per­fumed Ball (1997)

The ar­ti­fi­cial per­for­mances and ob­vi­ous at­tempt to look so­phis­ti­cat­ed make it seem aw­ful­ly cheesy like a film made for TV, and I reached the end of this film not sure why it was made in the first place, since it does­n’t of­fer much nor has any­thing re­al­ly in­ter­est­ing enough to say.

The Perks of Be­ing a Wall­flower (2012)

Though with an un­nec­es­sary twist and a few clichés in a plot that could have cer­tain­ly avoid­ed them, this is a very sin­cere and in­volv­ing dra­ma about what it is like to be a teenag­er try­ing to find his place in the world — and its strength lies in three ex­cel­lent per­for­mances.

Per­son­al Shop­per (2016)

Kris­ten Stew­art de­liv­ers a great per­for­mance that grabs our at­ten­tion, and Olivi­er As­sayas does a very nice job creep­ing us out in some mo­ments; but it is just too bad, though, that he gets lost with a stu­pid script that has no fo­cus, no di­rec­tion and not much that in­ter­est­ing to say.

The Per­vert’s Guide to Cin­e­ma (2006)

Žižek’s per­son­al psy­cho­an­a­lyt­ic dis­sec­tion of Cin­e­ma is al­ways fas­ci­nat­ing and re­ward­ing, even if clear­ly a one man’s vi­sion. But many times he also ram­bles among dif­fer­ent ideas with­out be­ing re­al­ly able to or­ga­nize his thoughts in a co­her­ent, log­i­cal se­quence.

The Per­vert’s Guide to Ide­ol­o­gy (2012)

Žižek’s many ideas are re­al­ly fas­ci­nat­ing and al­ways fun to watch, but once again he has trou­ble or­ga­niz­ing all of them in a co­he­sive ar­gu­ment, even if now the re­sult is less ram­bling than the first film due to the nar­rowed-down fo­cus of what he wants to say.

Pet Se­matary (1989)

King’s screen­play (adapt­ed from his own nov­el) is gen­er­al­ly well struc­tured de­spite its flaws, but the movie suf­fers main­ly from stiff di­a­logue and Lam­bert’s poor, am­a­teur­ish di­rec­tion, which has trou­ble even with the most ba­sic things, such as the ge­og­ra­phy of the scenes.

Pet Se­matary (2019)

I do ap­plaud the film­mak­ers’ de­ci­sion to go for some­thing more orig­i­nal by mak­ing such rad­i­cal changes in King’s orig­i­nal sto­ry, al­though it is hard to call them clever or feel that there is any­thing here that ac­tu­al­ly stands out when com­pared to that mediocre first adap­ta­tion.

Pe­ter Pan (1953)

Though it is sup­posed to be an ad­ven­tur­ous sto­ry of youth and in­no­cence, it is marred by the fact that Pe­ter Pan and Tin­ker Bell come off as tru­ly un­lik­able char­ac­ters, and it must be a sign that it is­n’t re­al­ly work­ing the way it should when you see your­self root­ing for Cap­tain Hook.

Pet­ting Zoo (2015)

Lay­la looks and speaks like a nor­mal girl, with nor­mal de­sires, doubts and frus­tra­tions in a defin­ing mo­ment of her life — which is how it should be like -, and al­though the end­ing is not that sat­is­fy­ing, this is an hon­est por­trait of ado­les­cence that does­n’t need to be a moral state­ment.

Phan­tasm (1979)

Sil­ly and with no sense of struc­ture, this movie is ba­si­cal­ly a se­ries of ran­dom scenes put to­geth­er and with a bunch of ran­dom crea­tures at­tack­ing the char­ac­ters over and over un­til bore­dom is all that is left, with the Tall Man be­ing one of the most stu­pid and un­scary vil­lains ever.

The Phan­tom of the Opera (1990)

This de­cent TV movie ver­sion adapt­ed from Arthur Ko­pit’s play — which in turn is con­sid­er­ably dis­tinct from the orig­i­nal sto­ry by Gas­ton Ler­oux — fea­tures a great per­for­mance by Burt Lan­cast­er, a good art di­rec­tion and a nice score by John Ad­di­son.

The Phan­tom of the Opera (2004)

The im­pres­sive sets, cos­tumes, pro­duc­tion di­rec­tion and cin­e­matog­ra­phy make for a stun­ning vi­su­al spec­ta­cle, but most of the songs — with the ex­cep­tion of two or three — are hideous (yes, I hate both An­drew Lloyd Web­ber and his mu­si­cal) and But­ler is a ter­ri­ble singer.

Philadel­phia (1993)

One of the first movies to deal with del­i­cate mat­ters like AIDS, ho­mo­sex­u­al­i­ty and in­tol­er­ance at the time of its re­lease. Al­though not al­to­geth­er mem­o­rable, this is a praise-wor­thy ef­fort that re­lies on some great per­for­mances and proves to be a deeply touch­ing ex­pe­ri­ence.

The Philadel­phia Sto­ry (1940)

A wit­ty ro­man­tic com­e­dy with a re­fined, in­tel­li­gent di­a­logue and sharp per­for­mances, es­pe­cial­ly Hep­burn and Stew­art, al­though I feel re­luc­tant to ac­cept the sex­ist way that it cor­re­lates a wom­an’s strong char­ac­ter with her be­ing a prig, as if hum­bling and tam­ing were the same.

Philom­e­na (2013)

With amus­ing mo­ments of hu­mor and good per­for­mances by Dench and Coogan, this fine and sad lit­tle dra­ma packs some un­ex­pect­ed emo­tion­al punch­es, but there is not much else into it and it is not as chal­leng­ing and orig­i­nal as it re­al­ly could have been.

Phoenix (2014)

Nina Hoss de­liv­ers per­haps the very best and most chal­leng­ing per­for­mance of her ca­reer in this grip­ping film about what it is like to be­come a stranger to the per­son you love (and vice ver­sa) — even though the sui­cide of a cer­tain char­ac­ter comes up as quite un­nec­es­sary.

The Pi­ano (1993)

Hol­ly Hunter and Anna Paquin de­liv­er two ter­rif­ic per­for­mances in this beau­ti­ful, haunt­ing sto­ry that Cam­pi­on car­ries off with sheer sen­si­tiv­i­ty and in a slow-burn­ing fash­ion that helps ex­plore the com­plex­i­ty of its char­ac­ters and themes like re­straint, pas­sion and lone­li­ness.

Pick­pock­et (1959)

Bres­son’s un­emo­tion­al style and wood­en per­for­mances may not be ac­ces­si­ble to every­one but it is im­pres­sive how he holds our in­ter­est in the many minu­ti­ae of the pick­pock­et­ing sleight of hand tricks, mak­ing them seem more like an art than a con­demnable deed.

A Pi­geon Sat on a Branch Re­flect­ing on Ex­is­tence (2014)

With a won­der­ful mise-en-scène and cin­e­matog­ra­phy (most­ly gor­geous wide-an­gle long shots), this amus­ing col­lec­tion of sev­er­al vi­gnettes can be pret­ty iron­ic and sur­re­al as they show that life is made up not only of gra­cious, strange and pro­sa­ic mo­ments but also of pain and vi­cious deeds.

Pieta (2012)

The over­whelm­ing dra­mat­ic strength of this gut-wrench­ing tale of re­venge makes us for­give its un­de­ni­able lack of sub­tle­ty (es­pe­cial­ly re­gard­ing its so­cial and po­lit­i­cal am­bi­tions) and its ab­surd­ly am­a­teur­ish di­rec­tion (the aw­ful zooms and cam­era move­ments).

Pina (2011)

From the spec­tac­u­lar chore­og­ra­phy of Rite of Spring to the melan­choly of Café Müller, this doc­u­men­tary made by Wim Wen­ders (in a fab­u­lous 3D) takes us on a fas­ci­nat­ing jour­ney into the work of an artist and her lega­cy in the de­vel­op­ment of the ex­pres­sion­ist dance.

Pineap­ple Ex­press (2008)

David Gor­don Green di­rect­ing a sto­ry by Judd Ap­a­tow is some­thing that goes against the laws of na­ture, but even more sur­pris­ing is how well it works, a great blend of bro­mance, ston­er com­e­dy and high­ly en­joy­able ac­tion, with James Fran­co shin­ing in a hi­lar­i­ous per­for­mance.

Pink Flamin­gos (1972)

An out­ra­geous and re­pel­lent ex­er­cise in bad taste whose only in­fan­tile ob­jec­tive is to leave you dis­gust­ed as if eat­ing dog shit your­self. It is­n’t fun­ny, the act­ing is hor­ri­ble and John Wa­ters only proves that he is an aw­ful di­rec­tor with his trashy zooms and ugly cam­era move­ments.

Pink Floyd: The Wall (1982)

A sil­ly rock mu­si­cal that seems made by a daz­zled hip­pie stu­dent who wants to rebel against the sys­tem with­out re­al­ly know­ing why (and it doesn’t help that the lyrics are so rep­e­ti­tious and ex­pos­i­to­ry some­times); but at least a nice dose of sur­re­al­ism is al­ways wel­come.

The Pink Pan­ther (1963)

In­spec­tor Clouse­au may not be the main char­ac­ter, but Pe­ter Sell­ers steals the show in this a de­light­ful com­e­dy that boasts Hen­ry Mancini’s clas­sic theme and some very fun­ny mo­ments (many of them im­pro­vised), even if its sense of hu­mor may feel a bit dat­ed some­times.

Pinoc­chio (1940)

Col­lodi’s clas­sic fairy tale is adapt­ed into a spell­bind­ing an­i­ma­tion full of ad­ven­ture and ten­sion, no­tably scari­er and more se­ri­ous in tone than the usu­al Dis­ney movies. A won­der­ful sto­ry that holds an im­por­tant moral les­son for chil­dren about the dan­gers of the world.

Pi­ran­ha (1978)

De­spite show­ing ear­ly signs of Dan­te’s pe­cu­liar sense of hu­mor (the ul­u­lat­ing sound made by the pi­ra­nhas is a hi­lar­i­ous ex­am­ple), this spoof of Jaws (or as Roger Cor­man put it, his “homage” to that clas­sic) did not re­sist well the ef­fect of time, look­ing pret­ty trashy and sil­ly to­day.

The Pi­rates! Band of Mis­fits (2012)

An amus­ing but ir­reg­u­lar stop-mo­tion an­i­ma­tion (with a use­less 3D) that has many in­tel­li­gent and re­al­ly well-in­spired scenes but also mo­ments of pedes­tri­an hu­mor that make the movie look as sil­ly as, say, an episode of The Big Bang The­o­ry.

Pi­rates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011)

A movie that has no rea­son to ex­ist but to make mon­ey, es­pe­cial­ly if you con­sid­er the un­nec­es­sary 3D. Every­thing is so sil­ly and pre­dictable, the char­ac­ters are most­ly an­noy­ing, and you know some­thing is very wrong when even the ac­tion scenes feel rep­e­ti­tious and un­der­whelm­ing.

Pit and the Pen­du­lum (1961)

A very in­spired adap­ta­tion that strays com­plete­ly from Poe’s sto­ry — in fact, it is hard to see why it is said to be an adap­ta­tion in the first place -, and Cor­man builds a tense at­mos­phere with a firm di­rec­tion, a fine art di­rec­tion and Price’s mag­net­ic per­for­mance.

The Pit and the Pen­du­lum (1991)

Stu­art Gor­don does a great job again com­bin­ing hor­ror (this time from pure hu­man evil) and camp (even though it gets a bit too campy some­times), ben­e­fit­ing from Lance Hen­rik­sen’s creepy per­for­mance and of­fer­ing us a sol­id (and un­der­rat­ed) adap­ta­tion of Poe’s short sto­ry.

Pitch Per­fect (2012)

It may be con­ven­tion­al and for­mu­la­ic with near­ly all film clichés that Kendrick­’s char­ac­ter dis­dains so much (and not with the orig­i­nal­i­ty of the likes of The Break­fast Club), but maybe that is the point af­ter all: to work as a sol­id pre­dictable com­e­dy. And it does so well.

Pixote (1981)

A hard-hit­ting por­tray­al of the mis­er­able child­hood faced by count­less mi­nors in Brazil who don’t see any way ahead of them ex­cept a life of crime, and it is even more painful and trag­ic when we con­sid­er that its main ac­tor was mur­dered by the po­lice in real life six years af­ter it was made.

The Place Be­yond the Pines (2012)

Cian­france puts a lot of ef­fort into gen­er­at­ing ap­pre­hen­sion, but he is un­able to find any di­rec­tion in this ter­ri­bly mis­guid­ed soap opera that re­lies on an ab­surd amount of con­trived co­in­ci­dences and is pre­dictable, ar­ti­fi­cial, un­fo­cused and ul­ti­mate­ly point­less.

Le Plaisir (1952)

Apart from that nat­ur­al draw­back of most an­tholo­gies — be­ing a rather un­even piece made of con­trast­ing sto­ries -, this film is a charm­ing and re­fresh­ing ex­pe­ri­ence that ben­e­fits main­ly from its sump­tu­ous vi­su­als and splen­did use of track­ing shots and long takes.

Plan 9 from Out­er Space (1959)

Ed Wood’s most in­fa­mous cre­ation and a def­i­nite prove of how out­ra­geous­ly in­ept he was as a film­mak­er. Fea­tur­ing a lot of laugh­able act­ing and di­a­logue, ridicu­lous spe­cial ef­fects and a dis­as­trous no­tion of space and time, this is a mas­ter­piece of sheer aw­ful­ness.

The Plat­form (2019)

As far as al­le­gories of class strug­gle go, this is a dark, grip­ping and of­ten tense dystopi­an thriller that may seem a bit con­fused some­times about its own analo­gies (es­pe­cial­ly to­wards the end) but man­ages to keep us al­ways on the edge of our seats want­i­ng to see what hap­pens next.

Play­ing (2007)

The whole con­cept be­hind the film is ab­solute­ly fas­ci­nat­ing, as it not only blurs the line be­tween fic­tion and re­al­i­ty (which would have been too sim­ple) but de­fies the very idea of sto­ry­telling (and its ef­fect on us) when we are not able to tell any­more if what we hear is real or not.

Play­ing by Heart (1998)

A pass­able yet rather pre­dictable ro­man­tic dra­ma that, de­spite a top-notch cast, seems more in­ter­est­ed in its el­e­ment of sur­prise at the end, re­duc­ing all the com­plex­i­ty of its sit­u­a­tions and themes to a hap­py end­ing where every­thing works out and is wrapped up in easy fash­ion.

The Pledge (2001)

An ex­cep­tion­al char­ac­ter study that grows in­cred­i­bly suf­fo­cat­ing as it leads us to pon­der the real mo­ti­va­tions be­hind its pro­tag­o­nist’s ac­tions, re­ly­ing on one of the best per­for­mances in Jack Nichol­son’s ca­reer and cul­mi­nat­ing in a haunt­ing, bit­ter and fit­ting­ly iron­ic con­clu­sion.

Plus One (2019)

While com­par­isons with When Har­ry Met Sal­ly… are in­evitable (es­pe­cial­ly con­sid­er­ing that Jack Quaid is Meg Ryan’s son), this is a ma­ture rom­com that ben­e­fits most­ly from the charis­ma of its two leads and their great chem­istry to­geth­er, even if the end­ing is too sim­ple for a sto­ry that de­served more.

Poc­a­hon­tas (1995)

I do not share the neg­a­tive crit­i­cism that this well-in­ten­tioned (yet naive) an­i­ma­tion is racist and of­fen­sive to Amer­i­can In­di­ans, and it is ac­tu­al­ly a lot more se­ri­ous in theme and mood than the av­er­age Dis­ney film, with also gor­geous vi­su­als and a beau­ti­ful Os­car-win­ning song.

A Poem Is a Naked Per­son (1974)

I won­der what made Blank be­lieve there was enough in­ter­est­ing ma­te­r­i­al here to fill a fea­ture-length film, be­cause this doc­u­men­tary clear­ly lacks the fo­cus of his short­er ones and hard­ly has any­one fas­ci­nat­ing to make it worth the long wait, de­spite the mu­sic and at­mos­phere.

The Poet of the Cas­tle (1959)

Po­et­ic and lyric like the artist’s works and al­ways aware of the alien­at­ing con­crete jun­gle about him push­ing his prover­bial de­sire away to Pasár­ga­da.

Po­et­ry (2010)

An un­even, over­long dra­ma that wants to dis­cuss many sub­jects but gets lost among ideas that are not ful­ly de­vel­oped or well ex­plored, and so it is clear that it should have been bet­ter edit­ed and fo­cused more on the pro­tag­o­nist’s fas­ci­na­tion with po­et­ry and in­spi­ra­tion.

La Pointe Courte (1955)

It is a shame that few peo­ple know or talk about this re­mark­able di­rec­to­r­i­al de­but that would lat­er in­spire ma­jor film­mak­ers such as Alain Resnais and In­g­mar Bergman, as it show­cas­es a ground­break­ing use of film lan­guage, a stun­ning cin­e­matog­ra­phy and a tru­ly in­no­v­a­tive form of sto­ry­telling.

Poké­mon De­tec­tive Pikachu (2019)

I wish Pikachu would part­ner with some­one brighter and more charis­mat­ic than the whiny pro­tag­o­nist we have to put up with here, and this is a bland, per­func­to­ry movie that rarely man­ages to be thrilling with its in­con­se­quen­tial ac­tion, lame vil­lain and un­der­whelm­ing twists.

Po­lice, Ad­jec­tive (2009)

This Ro­man­ian film is def­i­nite­ly not for every­one, con­sid­er­ing its pe­cu­liar di­rect­ing style and slug­gish­ly slow pace, but those will­ing to sit through it will find a thought-pro­vok­ing and moral­ly chal­leng­ing nar­ra­tive with a par­tic­u­lar­ly out­stand­ing fi­nal act.

Polisse (2011)

In­vest­ing in a doc­u­men­tary tone with a hand­held cam­era, this re­al­is­tic dra­ma de­picts the every­day life of the policemen/women in the di­vi­sion of crimes against chil­dren in Paris, and is a fas­ci­nat­ing col­lec­tion of sit­u­a­tions that show their work and the re­la­tion­ship be­tween them.

Pol­ter­geist (1982)

Even with the lev­el of hor­ror toned down to meet Spiel­berg’s crowd-pleas­ing stan­dards (which is a pity con­sid­er­ing that this movie was also di­rect­ed by the guy who con­ceived one of the most ter­ri­fy­ing films ever), Pol­ter­geist is quite en­ter­tain­ing and has a lot of great mo­ments.

Pol­ter­geist II: The Oth­er Side (1986)

I used to be ter­ri­fied by the sight of Kane when I was a kid, but it is im­pos­si­ble to over­look how in­suf­fer­ably dull, dis­joint­ed and point­less this lame ex­cuse for a se­quel is, with a lot of bad di­a­logue, half-baked hor­ror scenes and even some ca­su­al racial stereo­types thrown in.

Pol­ter­geist III (1988)

Dark­er than the pre­vi­ous movies but unin­spired, rep­e­ti­tious, full of in­con­sis­ten­cies and with char­ac­ters who al­ways be­have in such lu­di­crous ways — like Nan­cy Al­len’s who is ini­tial­ly an­noy­ing and self­ish at one mo­ment only to com­plete­ly change her mind right af­ter.

Pol­ter­geist (2015)

I can’t see any homage in this painful­ly de­riv­a­tive movie that reuses the worst clichés of the genre, with a lazy script that has no shame to come up with the most ridicu­lous “ex­pla­na­tion” ever (drawn on pa­per, to ap­pear more “sci­en­tif­ic”) for a su­per­nat­ur­al phe­nom­e­non.

Poly­ester (1981)

Like a Fass­binder or Dou­glas Sirk movie made by John Wa­ters, it is a mess with all his trade­mark filth, ir­ri­tat­ing over­act­ing and ridicu­lous lack of struc­ture and fo­cus, and I guess it would be only amus­ing and worth see­ing in the cin­e­ma for the Odora­ma scratch-and-sniff gim­mick.

Poly­tech­nique (2009)

The re-cre­ation of the mas­sacre is quite ef­fi­cient, de­pict­ing the shock­ing bru­tal­i­ty of the real in­ci­dent, but the film suf­fers from an ir­reg­u­lar nar­ra­tive di­lut­ed by flash­backs and jumps in time. Be­sides, the char­ac­ters are not too well de­vel­oped and the res­o­lu­tion is dis­ap­point­ing.

Pom­peii (2014)

From a nar­ra­tive point of view, this is an unin­spired hodge­podge that sim­ply re­cy­cles every cliché and con­ven­tion of the genre (in­clud­ing an in­de­struc­tible vil­lain), be­ing only worth it for the amus­ing, great-look­ing cat­a­stro­phe, the nice score and Kit Har­ing­ton’s spec­tac­u­lar abs.

Ponyo (2008)

A very adorable and vi­su­al­ly beau­ti­ful hand-drawn an­i­ma­tion by mas­ter Hayao Miyaza­ki, who goes for a more in­no­cent and sim­pler ap­proach to tell this sto­ry in­stead of de­liv­er­ing an epic of en­vi­ron­men­tal mes­sage like some of his more mem­o­rable works.

Pop­eye (1980)

A de­light­ful and sweet adap­ta­tion that cap­tures the in­no­cent spir­it of the com­ic strip and the car­toon, trans­lat­ing it to the screen with great songs, a splen­did pro­duc­tion de­sign (the en­tire­ly con­struct­ed set of Sweet­haven is fab­u­lous) and price­less mo­ments be­tween Williams and Wal­ston.

Por­co Rosso (1992)

Miyaza­ki in­dulges him­self in his pas­sion for sea­planes with this very en­joy­able project of most per­son­al in­ter­est, an al­ways en­ter­tain­ing film that ben­e­fits from a beau­ti­ful sound­track, a spot-on sense of hu­mor and, even bet­ter, a lot of heart.

O Por­to de San­tos (1978)

The man who dances en­cap­su­lates every­thing this film says with­out want­i­ng to say it, with its nar­ra­tive and pur­pose be­ing seam­less­ly con­struct­ed, al­most un­no­ticed, by mu­sic, im­ages and sounds of the peo­ple who com­pose the ge­og­ra­phy of the port.

The Po­sei­don Ad­ven­ture (1972)

It is ir­ri­tat­ing that near­ly every fe­male char­ac­ter is shown as weak or hys­ter­i­cal, but this is an en­ter­tain­ing dis­as­ter movie that can be quite tense some­times and has a su­perb pro­duc­tion de­sign, nice ac­tion scenes and a great cast made up of most­ly Os­car-win­ning ac­tors.

Post Tene­bras Lux (2012)

This ex­per­i­men­tal film of pow­er­ful im­agery and evoca­tive at­mos­phere may be in­trigu­ing at first, but soon it be­comes pret­ty clear that Rey­gadas is not re­al­ly in­ter­est­ed in say­ing any­thing con­sis­tent in this aim­less se­ries of un­re­lat­ed scenes that hard­ly come to­geth­er.

Potiche (2010)

It is nice to see that Ozon can still han­dle light come­dies like this, and even if there is noth­ing re­al­ly spe­cial about it, it is still a very pleas­ant and fun­ny movie thanks most­ly to Deneuve and De­par­dieu, who are both great as usu­al and shin­ing to­geth­er.

Powaqqat­si (1988)

While Koy­aanisqat­si is re­mark­able for its mu­si­cal, al­most math­e­mat­i­cal pre­ci­sion, the im­ages of ab­ject pover­ty we see here seem to have been put to­geth­er in a much more ran­dom fash­ion (like in a mu­sic video), which makes every­thing feel sad­ly rep­e­ti­tious and less re­veal­ing this time.

Pra Frente, Brasil (1982)

It is not with­out its flaws (es­pe­cial­ly in the end), but still this is a tense and im­por­tant film that open­ly speaks about a dark chap­ter in Brazil­ian his­to­ry when con­formism was the norm and there was noth­ing bet­ter than soc­cer to dis­tract peo­ple from what was hap­pen­ing.

Prayers for Bob­by (2009)

A sad real sto­ry about how in­tol­er­ance de­stroys lives and how it takes some­times a tragedy to force peo­ple to open their eyes, and Sigour­ney Weaver of­fers a pow­er­ful per­for­mance in this movie that tends a bit to­wards melo­dra­ma but is sin­cere about what it wants to say.

Pre­cious (2009)

The great­est achieve­ment of this bleak dra­ma is how it makes us sym­pa­thize with a char­ac­ter that could have been eas­i­ly stereo­typed if played by a not-so-great ac­tress, but Sidibe is su­perb as well as Mo’Nique, who shines as the self­ish moth­er.

Preda­tors (2010)

An ac­tion-packed piece of unin­spired es­capism that does­n’t come close to what made the orig­i­nal movie so sus­pense­ful, and de­spite a few good scenes and twists, it is filled with pa­thet­ic di­a­logue, stereo­typ­i­cal char­ac­ters and te­dious mo­ments in which noth­ing hap­pens.

The Pre­fab Peo­ple (1982)

I don’t un­der­stand Tar­r’s taste for re­dun­dant mono­logues in his ear­ly works when so much is al­ready shown on screen, and here in this sol­id, un­re­lent­ing piece of cin­e­ma ver­ité we can see that the most­ly silent last scene is much more res­o­nant and telling than the mono­logue that pre­cedes it.

Prej­u­dice (2015)

Al­though it does­n’t re­al­ly know how to end and goes on for two scenes longer than it should, this is a huge­ly un­com­fort­able fam­i­ly dra­ma that feels more cru­el than most films alike and has won­der­ful per­for­mances from its cast (es­pe­cial­ly Thomas Blan­chard, who is in­cred­i­ble).

Prêt-à-Porter (1994)

Alt­man’s light­heart­ed, amus­ing and un­fair­ly un­der­rat­ed satire on the fash­ion in­dus­try is a sharp en­sem­ble piece of celebri­ties, de­sign­ers and re­porters as they meet and stum­ble on one an­oth­er at the “prêt-à-porter” ex­trav­a­gan­za of Paris Fash­ion Week.

Pret­ty in Pink (1986)

A sweet com­ing-of-age sto­ry with an adorable sense of hu­mor, an awe­some sound­track and some su­perb per­for­mances by Stan­ton, Cry­er and Potts, and if the end may not please you (like it did please me), the sin­cere way the movie shows the in­se­cu­ri­ties of youth def­i­nite­ly will.

Pret­ty Woman (1990)

Even if com­plete­ly un­re­al­is­tic, it is easy to en­joy this de­light­ful lit­tle Cin­derel­la sto­ry that works so well thanks to the chem­istry be­tween the two leads and the de­li­cious di­a­logue, while Ju­lia Roberts puts in a very adorable per­for­mance.

Pride (2014)

A fun­ny and heart­felt com­e­dy about the im­por­tance of sol­i­dar­i­ty, friend­ship and courage to fight for jus­tice in our world — and thir­ty years af­ter the events de­pict­ed, this real sto­ry con­tin­ues to be rel­e­vant and in­spir­ing to­day as a call to stand up to­geth­er for equal rights.

Pride & Prej­u­dice (2005)

With a great cast, a won­der­ful score and a sump­tu­ous pro­duc­tion de­sign that feels like a trav­el in time, this is a de­light­ful adap­ta­tion that ben­e­fits most­ly from Austen’s di­a­logue (de­spite not be­ing as charm­ing as when you read it) and Keira Knight­ley’s strong per­for­mance.

The Priest and the Girl (1966)

It should be re­mem­bered more for its for­mal rig­or and the strength of Paulo José’s per­for­mance, since, when it comes to its flawed nar­ra­tive, it moves too slow­ly (to the point of te­dious af­ter a while) and does­n’t have much to of­fer be­yond the thin sto­ry that it wants to tell.

Prime Time Soap (2011)

It is so dis­ap­point­ing to see that this film is like a naive soap opera full of clichés and with poor­ly de­vel­oped char­ac­ters in un­re­al­is­tic sit­u­a­tions, but even worse is that it seems to ad­vo­cate the in­fu­ri­at­ing mes­sage that love and hap­pi­ness are more im­por­tant than fight­ing for free­dom.

Primer (2004)

Pro­duced on a min­i­mal bud­get of $7,000, this mind-blow­ing sci-fi mys­tery is ex­treme­ly com­plex and in­tel­li­gent, and it is amaz­ing how you get more de­tails each time you watch it and try to fit the pieces of this fas­ci­nat­ing puz­zle. A bril­liant film for those who like to be chal­lenged.

Prince Avalanche (2013)

An en­joy­able blend of fun­ny and melan­choly that ben­e­fits from Green’s sol­id di­rec­tion and strong per­for­mances by Rudd and Hirsch, even if it feels a bit vague and pur­pose­ly enig­mat­ic as its ti­tle, with the di­a­logue also be­com­ing ar­ti­fi­cial af­ter a cer­tain hip ac­ci­dent scene.

Prince of Per­sia: The Sands of Time (2010)

With a lot of clichés, a sil­ly sense of hu­mor and emp­ty, ridicu­lous char­ac­ters, this harm­less swash­buck­ler is pre­dictable from the first scene to the last and does­n’t even re­al­ize that the warn-out love/hate re­la­tion­ship be­tween the main cou­ple gets ir­ri­tat­ing re­al­ly re­al­ly fast.

The Prince of Tides (1991)

A sap­py and over­praised movie that is all over the place try­ing to bite off a lot more than it can chew, even dis­card­ing its heavy-hand­ed fam­i­ly dra­ma (which gets solved in the most pa­thet­ic way) to fo­cus on a corny ro­mance — and it did­n’t de­serve any of the Os­car nom­i­na­tions it got.

The Princess and the Frog (2009)

Dis­ney’s brief throw­back to a tra­di­tion­al hand-drawn an­i­ma­tion is this mild­ly amus­ing re-cre­ation of the New Or­leans of the 1920s with its jazz, voodoo, bay­ous and an African-Amer­i­can hero­ine who very con­ve­nient­ly does­n’t have to deal with any sort of prej­u­dice in those times.

The Princess Bride (1987)

An en­chant­i­ng sto­ry­book love sto­ry that has gained the sta­tus of cult movie along the years and ap­peals to both young­sters and adults alike thanks to its de­li­cious blend of ex­cit­ing ro­man­tic ad­ven­ture and hi­lar­i­ous com­e­dy — and made even more en­joy­able by a great cast.

Princess Mononoke (1997)

Miyaza­ki re­turns to the eco­log­i­cal mes­sage that he of­fered us in Nau­si­caä and el­e­vates it to an epic lev­el with this sto­ry of man vs na­ture that ben­e­fits from stun­ning vi­su­als, a won­der­ful score and com­plex char­ac­ters that can­not be de­fined in easy terms as be­ing ei­ther he­roes or vil­lains.

Pris­on­er of the Iron Bars (2003)

By of­fer­ing the Carandiru pris­on­ers an op­por­tu­ni­ty of record­ing their own ugly re­al­i­ty, Sacra­men­to cre­ates an episod­ic mo­sa­ic that re­veals quite a bit of those con­fined lives while also ex­pos­ing their sub­hu­man, in­salu­bri­ous con­di­tions in a place that re­al­ly looks like hell in a big city.

Pris­on­ers (2013)

With fan­tas­tic per­for­mances (Gyl­len­haal de­serves an Os­car), an ex­treme­ly com­plex script so well writ­ten in every sin­gle de­tail and a phe­nom­e­nal di­rec­tion that in­vests in a slow-burn­ing ten­sion with per­fec­tion, Pris­on­ers is cer­tain­ly one of the best films of the year.

The Pri­vate Lives of Eliz­a­beth and Es­sex (1939)

A film that ba­si­cal­ly re­lies on ex­changes of fine di­a­logue. The war scenes are now dat­ed and the fi­nal act is very weak, with the char­ac­ters say­ing one thing only to con­tra­dict them­selves and keep the plot mov­ing, but Davis rais­es the movie from or­di­nary to en­joy­able.

The Pro­duc­ers (1967)

With its ca­su­al ho­mo­pho­bia and ob­jec­ti­fi­ca­tion of women, the film’s sense of hu­mor feels a bit dat­ed and is not al­ways ef­fi­cient, but Gene Wilder and Zero Mos­tel are hi­lar­i­ous and hold this com­e­dy to­geth­er even when we re­al­ize that the plot is a lot more pre­dictable than it seems.

A Prophet (2009)

A grip­ping French gang­ster film that de­picts the many bru­tal changes that a man can go through af­ter en­ter­ing prison, and the 19-year-old Arab-Cor­si­can delin­quent who slow­ly learns to be­come a mur­der­er is played with an im­pres­sive in­ten­si­ty by Tahar Rahim.

The Pro­gram (2015)

This is one of those biopics that tells a sto­ry that we all know and does­n’t man­age the nec­es­sary to raise it above its lim­i­ta­tions; in­stead, it suf­fers from a one-di­men­sion­al pro­tag­o­nist that nev­er be­comes in­trigu­ing and ends so abrupt­ly that it feels like Frears got tired of telling it.

Project Al­manac (2015)

A worn-out mish­mash of films like Primer, Time­cop and The But­ter­fly Ef­fect made for an an­noy­ing teenage gen­er­a­tion with­out much cre­ativ­i­ty, and it is only worse that the movie’s di­rec­tion is so aw­ful with that found footage gim­mick that al­ready felt out­dat­ed ten years ago.

Project X (2012)

An­oth­er movie this year mis­us­ing the trite (and un­nec­es­sary) found footage gim­mick edit­ed from mul­ti­ple cam­eras (even un­der the wa­ter!), which would have been im­pos­si­ble to ob­tain. But those look­ing for just point­less, for­get­table fun are like­ly to be en­ter­tained.

Prom Night (1980)

A messy mix of Car­rie, Sat­ur­day Night Fever and Hal­loween that takes too long to get where it is go­ing (be­ing even in­ter­rupt­ed by a laugh­ably in­tru­sive dis­co dance scene), and so by the time things start to hap­pen, there is very lit­tle ten­sion left, even though I do like the end­ing.

Prometheus (2012)

An am­bi­tious movie with out­stand­ing vi­su­als and great ideas, but the ex­is­ten­tial­ist de­bate nev­er goes be­yond the ob­vi­ous, and so even if it has a grip­ping mys­tery, this is a frus­trat­ing ef­fort that only cares about com­ing up with more and more ques­tions than ever an­swer­ing them.

The Promise (1979)

There is a lot of hon­esty and truth in what it wants to say, es­pe­cial­ly in the way it avoids mak­ing Mar­i­on a one-di­men­sion­al vil­lain; even so, the re­sult is only a pass­able yet sap­py love sto­ry with good per­for­mances but in­evitably weak­ened by its corny di­a­logue.

Promise at Dawn (2017)

De­spite the good per­for­mances, here is an un­fo­cused bi­og­ra­phy that feels over­long and un­even as it wants to com­prise so much in­for­ma­tion about the char­ac­ter’s life — and it isn’t even ashamed of “steal­ing” the mu­sic score from Ar­rival and The Left­overs.

Promised Land (2012)

For the most part, this is an en­gag­ing and thought-pro­vok­ing dra­ma with ex­cel­lent di­a­logue and com­plex char­ac­ters fac­ing com­plex eth­i­cal is­sues, but it is ter­ri­bly frus­trat­ing to see it all reach an un­jus­ti­fi­able rev­e­la­tion and an un­con­vinc­ing — yet the­mat­i­cal­ly con­sis­tent — con­clu­sion.

The Pro­pos­al (2009)

De­spite some fun­ny mo­ments and the good chem­istry be­tween Bul­lock and Reynolds, there is noth­ing fresh in this un­o­rig­i­nal rom­com whose hu­mor is more em­bar­rass­ing than in­spired. Even worse is how we are sup­posed to buy that such a tough bitch can change so much in one week­end.

Prozac Na­tion (2001)

The strong per­for­mances from Ric­ci and Lange el­e­vate this de­press­ing dra­ma and pre­vent us from ful­ly hat­ing a trou­bled char­ac­ter who can’t stop hurt­ing every­one around her, and it is very sad how it shows the trag­ic ef­fects of de­pres­sion on a per­son and on those who love her.

Psy­cho (1960)

A sem­i­nal clas­sic of hor­ror by mas­ter Al­fred Hitch­cock, with some of the most mem­o­rable icon­ic scenes in the his­to­ry of Cin­e­ma. Tense, hor­rif­ic and a su­perb les­son in film­mak­ing, it of­fers well-con­struct­ed char­ac­ters, a lot of re­veal­ing di­a­logue and a huge re­gard for de­tails.

A Pub­lic Opin­ion (1967)

Fol­low­ing a sim­i­lar struc­ture to Ger­al­do Sarno’s chal­leng­ing Vi­ra­mun­do while also in­cor­po­rat­ing scenes from Leon Hirsz­man’s un­set­tling Maio­r­ia Ab­so­lu­ta, Ja­bor makes an in­sight­ful ef­fort to cap­ture the zeit­geist of Brazil’s mid­dle-class life in the late 1960s, the dreams and the alien­ation.

Pulse (2001)

There is a nice movie about alien­ation and lone­li­ness in the age of In­ter­net lost in the mid­dle of this sil­ly, heavy-hand­ed mess that, de­spite be­ing ef­fec­tive­ly creepy, dark and op­pres­sive, tries too hard to have a “mes­sage” and be pro­found (to the point of ob­vi­ous­ness).

Punch-Drunk Love (2002)

Adam San­dler shows, much to our ut­most sur­prise, that he can act when he wants and that he was the per­fect choice for An­der­son­’s take on a ro­man­tic com­e­dy, a sweet, dark­ly hu­mor­ous and amaz­ing­ly well-di­rect­ed film that is miles above most rom­coms that Hol­ly­wood pro­duces.

The Purge (2013)

What comes up as a thought-pro­vok­ing al­le­go­ry that does­n’t shy away from the so­ciopo­lit­i­cal im­pli­ca­tions of its premise soon gets lost in a last half hour that falls flat with a ridicu­lous ex­cess of dei ex machi­na and re­duces the Purge to what seems like a laugh­able sect.

The Purge: An­ar­chy (2014)

With a plot that is more con­sis­tent than that of the un­suc­cess­ful first movie, even though still in­sist­ing on that ridicu­lous idea of mak­ing the Purge look like a car­toon­ish sect of re­li­gious fa­nat­ics, this su­pe­ri­or se­quel also of­fers now an in­trigu­ing Hos­tel twist to it.

The Purge: Elec­tion Year (2016)

There is no ten­sion or sub­tle­ty to be found in this point­less se­quel that does­n’t of­fer any­thing that we haven’t seen be­fore in the pre­vi­ous two movies, just tire­some ac­tion and sil­ly po­lit­i­cal com­men­tary in times of pres­i­den­tial elec­tion (the whole “mar­tyr” thing makes no sense).

The Pur­suit of Hap­py­ness (2006)

Will Smith is ab­solute­ly splen­did in this in­spi­ra­tional real sto­ry of strug­gle and de­ter­mi­na­tion that holds an in­tense dra­mat­ic pow­er with­out any need to be­come a cheap melo­dra­ma — which is some­thing Hol­ly­wood has long grown used to, un­for­tu­nate­ly.

Puss in Boots (2011)

It is sad to see that Dream­works could not main­tain the same lev­el of qual­i­ty of Shrek in this spin-off. Fo­cus­ing on a mi­nor char­ac­ter who was once adorable in home­o­path­ic dos­es, this sil­ly an­i­ma­tion suf­fers from lack of orig­i­nal­i­ty and a pre­dictable plot that is to­tal­ly for­get­table.

Pyg­malion (1938)

The great orig­i­nal adap­ta­tion of Shaw’s satir­ic play, which would be re­made as the clas­sic mu­si­cal My Fair Lady many years lat­er in 1964. Clever and con­vinc­ing, this ver­sion re­lies on a sharp, well-writ­ten di­a­logue and su­perb per­for­mances by Hiller and Howard.

Quai des Or­fèvres (1947)

Even for a more com­mer­cial ef­fort, Clouzot lends his unique style and voice to a well-writ­ten and ex­quis­ite­ly-di­rect­ed crime sto­ry that has great touch­es of hu­mor and some very de­light­ful per­for­mances by De­lair and Jou­vet (who is hi­lar­i­ous and gets the best lines).

Queen of Earth (2015)

Eliz­a­beth Moss puts in a ter­rif­ic per­for­mance in this ma­ture psy­cho­log­i­cal dra­ma about bit­ter­ness, re­sent­ment and nar­cis­sism, a film that is es­pe­cial­ly in­tel­li­gent when it make us par­tic­i­pate in the thoughts and feel­ings of its two char­ac­ters, even if it is also a bit elu­sive.

Queen of the Desert (2015)

A frus­trat­ing biopic that lacks in con­sis­ten­cy and real sense of pur­pose or di­rec­tion, as it re­mains un­for­tu­nate­ly noth­ing more than a rev­er­en­tial sto­ry that suf­fers even more from a com­plete ab­sence of chem­istry be­tween Gertrude/Kidman and both her lovers.

Querelle (1982)

Fass­binder’s last work only proves that he was­n’t re­al­ly in tune with Genet’s vi­sion to adapt one of his sto­ries, since this is only a con­vo­lut­ed, aim­less mess packed with ridicu­lous, pseu­do-po­et­ic di­a­logue and un­able to make you feel any con­nec­tion with its char­ac­ters.

The Qui­et Amer­i­can (2002)

A faith­ful adap­ta­tion of Greene’s won­der­ful nov­el, very well edit­ed and with an ex­quis­ite pro­duc­tion de­sign, a beau­ti­ful score and Michael Caine in one of his best per­for­mances — be­sides the ex­cep­tion­al way that the nar­ra­tive in­ter­weaves ro­mance and pol­i­tics to near per­fec­tion.

A Qui­et Place (2018)

The film is cer­tain­ly not flaw­less and some­times even has trou­ble fol­low­ing the rules it es­tab­lish­es for its own uni­verse, but even so this is an ex­cel­lent, well-di­rect­ed hor­ror movie that makes us care about its char­ac­ters and man­ages to be quite tense and scary.

The Quispe Girls (2013)

Sepúlve­da ap­proach­es his ma­te­r­i­al with a care­ful, un­adorned for­mal­ism as he de­picts the dai­ly life of the sis­ters in their iso­la­tion and con­cludes his sto­ry with a sharp blow that is all the sad­der in the way that it avoids any sort of ro­man­ti­cism, with­out even a mu­si­cal score to be heard.

Quiz Show (1994)

Even if the script is a lot less sub­tle than it be­lieves to be — with some lines that are quite heavy-hand­ed at times — this is a clever film that ex­am­ines the per­verse irony of who gets to win and who gets to lose in the world of show busi­ness when you try to do the ‘right thing.’

RBG (2018)

I can’t help think that the in­for­ma­tion pre­sent­ed here is a bit stuffed to­geth­er with­out that much flu­id­ness from one top­ic to the next, but still this is a sol­id doc­u­men­tary about a tru­ly re­mark­able woman who won’t step down be­cause she knows how im­por­tant her fight is.

Rab­bit Hole (2010)

John Cameron Mitchell tells with great sen­si­bil­i­ty this del­i­cate and painful­ly sad sto­ry that could have been made too de­pres­sive and hard to watch by a heavy-hand­ed film­mak­er, while the per­for­mances are out­stand­ing, es­pe­cial­ly from Kid­man and Wiest.

Rab­bit With­out Ears 2 (2009)

It is ob­vi­ous from the get-go that this unin­spired ro­man­tic com­e­dy doesn’t have any sense of struc­ture or pur­pose, lack­ing a de­fined plot and shoot­ing for every easy gag it can come up with – like sit­comish scenes that don’t even seem to be­long in the same movie.

Ra­bid (1977)

A bunch of dis­con­nect­ed ideas don’t make a film, and so this bizarre movie feels more like an amal­gam of un­ripe ideas thrown to­geth­er with­out a clear pur­pose (much like Shiv­ers be­fore it), mak­ing me won­der why Cro­nen­berg cast a porn movie ac­tress as a grotesque sex­u­al preda­tor.

Ra­bid Dogs (2015)

This sol­id thriller may seem too schemat­ic and look like many oth­er sim­i­lar ones, with a ba­sic, unin­spired plot and flat char­ac­ters who are not well de­vel­oped, but it makes up for these flaws with a lot of style, great mu­sic and an un­ex­pect­ed end­ing.

The Rachel Di­vide (2018)

There is a tremen­dous­ly in­trigu­ing sub­ject for de­bate in the mid­dle of this — the pos­si­bil­i­ty of tran­sra­cial iden­ti­ty, which has al­ready raised a lot of con­tro­ver­sy — but the film re­mains most­ly on the sur­face and nev­er goes deep enough into the com­plex­i­ty of what this could mean.

Ra­diostars (2012)

A sol­id feel-good road-com­e­dy, light­heart­ed and fun­ny, with a very well-writ­ten di­a­logue as ab­solute high­light. It is re­al­ly well made con­sid­er­ing this is Levy’s first film, and it ben­e­fits from a group of ir­re­sistible char­ac­ters played by some per­fect­ly tuned ac­tors.

Rafi­ki (2018)

The in­ten­tions are def­i­nite­ly no­ble, es­pe­cial­ly con­sid­er­ing that the film was made in a coun­try where ho­mo­sex­u­al­i­ty means a death sen­tence, but un­for­tu­nate­ly the love sto­ry is de­vel­oped in an ex­treme­ly corny way and the end­ing is a dis­hon­est cop-out that frus­trates for its naiveté.

Rag­ing Bull (1980)

Su­perbly di­rect­ed, edit­ed and act­ed, this top-notch box­ing dra­ma is a fas­ci­nat­ing char­ac­ter study cen­tered on an ag­gres­sive, in­se­cure man over­come by in­tense jeal­ousy and para­noia. A haunt­ing film craft­ed with a lot of hon­esty and un­pre­ten­tious re­al­ism.

Rag­narok (2013)

This de­cent Nor­we­gian take on a mon­ster movie plus trea­sure hunt for the whole fam­i­ly ob­vi­ous­ly bor­rows a lot from Juras­sic Park and Raiders of the Lost Ark but doesn’t dis­ap­point, with the kind of ad­ven­ture-turned-night­mare to be ex­pect­ed and good per­for­mances.

The Raid (2011)

Those look­ing for a smart script or char­ac­ter de­vel­op­ment are like­ly to be ex­treme­ly frus­trat­ed, since this styl­ish ac­tion movie is ba­si­cal­ly a thrilling ex­cuse for a lot of adren­a­line, over-the-top bru­tal­i­ty and ex­hil­a­rat­ing silat scenes – which it de­liv­ers.

Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

It is al­most im­pos­si­ble not to be thrilled by this huge­ly en­ter­tain­ing mod­ern clas­sic that boasts a de­li­cious sense of hu­mor, a charis­mat­ic pro­tag­o­nist (Har­ri­son Ford is awe­some as al­ways) and a lot of fast-paced ac­tion, with each scene more ex­cit­ing than the one be­fore.

Rain­tree Coun­ty (1957)

A lav­ish pro­duc­tion that wants to re­peat the suc­cess of Gone with the Wind but is bor­ing to death in its mas­sive run­ning time of al­most three hours and suf­fers also from Mont­gomery Clift’s er­rat­ic per­for­mance and the bizarre change in his looks due to his trag­ic car ac­ci­dent.

Raise the Red Lantern (1991)

A film of sheer for­mal beau­ty, with a gor­geous cin­e­matog­ra­phy and a grip­ping al­le­goric sto­ry about the sub­jec­tion of women in a pa­tri­ar­chal so­ci­ety, but it is in­fu­ri­at­ing how it col­laps­es in its last forty min­utes, turn­ing into a melo­dra­mat­ic soap opera with a ter­ri­ble end­ing.

Rais­ing Ari­zona (1987)

The in­spired di­a­logue is so hi­lar­i­ous and the ab­sur­di­ties we see here pile up so in­sane­ly that this loony com­e­dy turns out to be one of the most de­li­cious and un­pre­dictable of the Coen broth­ers’ en­tire fil­mog­ra­phy, with a bunch of ex­cel­lent per­for­mances from an ex­cel­lent cast.

Ralph Breaks the In­ter­net (2018)

As a proud prod­uct of 2018, it is safe to say that this movie will soon be dat­ed and half of its jokes will be lost for a new gen­er­a­tion, but de­spite that (and the fact that the cli­max is a bit messy), it can be quite en­ter­tain­ing with its con­cept and de­sign of an in­ter­net world.

Ram­bo: Last Blood (2019)

No kid­ding, this is more like a bloody ver­sion of Home Alone played by a men­tal­ly re­tard­ed Liam Nee­son (the com­par­isons with Tak­en seem in­evitable to me), but it’s nowhere near as fun as I make it sound, just ir­ri­tat­ing with its re­hashed car­nage, hor­ren­dous di­a­logue and ob­vi­ous jin­go­ism.

Ran (1985)

At 75 years old, Kuro­sawa de­liv­ers this epic and breath­tak­ing cin­e­mat­ic spec­ta­cle of dis­grace and tragedy falling upon mor­tal men, a grandiose pro­duc­tion with over­whelm­ing war scenes and spell­bind­ing vi­su­als – even if also a bit long and rep­e­ti­tious in its sec­ond half.

Rang De Bas­an­ti (2006)

While at first it seems like a tire­some suc­ces­sion of nice-look­ing mu­sic videos, not even car­ing to ex­plain how the char­ac­ter can make that kind of film with­out mon­ey, it soon gets worse with a rep­re­hen­si­ble mes­sage, open­ly ad­vo­cat­ing the use of vi­o­lence to change the coun­try.

Ran­go (2011)

George Lu­cas’ com­pa­ny ILM proves to be a match for Pixar with their first an­i­ma­tion, a daz­zling fun ride that is also an en­ter­tain­ing homage to West­erns and the Ital­ian spaghet­ti sub­genre, de­li­cious­ly sub­vert­ing the fig­ure of the anti-hero in a sto­ry with many wel­come ref­er­ences.

Raul – O In­í­cio, o Fim e o Meio (2012)

A fas­ci­nat­ing and su­perbly edit­ed overview of the life and work of Brazil­ian singer-leg­end Raul Seixas. The scenes and events de­pict­ed here are all per­fect­ly put to­geth­er in a very flu­id and co­he­sive way, re­main­ing al­ways en­gag­ing and re­al­ly touch­ing to­wards the end.

The Raven (1963)

Cor­man left com­plete­ly aside Poe’s ghoul­ish tone to make this tongue-in-cheek “adap­ta­tion” of his most fa­mous poem, and be­cause of that it doesn’t work as a hor­ror sto­ry but is amus­ing as a light com­e­dy, co-star­ring Price, Lorre and Karloff in hi­lar­i­ous per­for­mances.

Rav­ing Iran (2016)

It makes it easy for us to con­nect with these two young men who strug­gle to live their art in a coun­try where Is­lam­ic cen­sor­ship is a main tool for artis­tic op­pres­sion, and thus lets us un­der­stand their as­pi­ra­tions, the dif­fi­cul­ty they face to pur­sue them and the choic­es they make.

Raw (2016)

This kind of metaphor for the awak­en­ing of fe­male sex­u­al­i­ty as an un­con­trol­lable force and tran­si­tion phase into adult­hood may not be an ex­am­ple of orig­i­nal­i­ty (check out Teeth and Gin­ger Snaps), but fans of body hor­ror and vom­it-in­duc­ing gore should find a lot to en­joy here.

Ra­zor in the Flesh (1969)

Che­di­ak makes some­thing re­al­ly en­gag­ing with such a talky play by film­ing it in a se­ries of long takes that feel al­ways flu­id and el­e­gant, and he dev­as­tates us with the ugly hu­mil­i­a­tion he puts his pro­tag­o­nist through while sell­ing the hell out of a film that could have eas­i­ly felt misog­y­nis­tic.

Ra­zor in the Flesh (1997)

It is as though d’Almei­da wants to be seen as an im­pu­dent cross be­tween Pe­dro Almod­ó­var and David Lynch (or the en­fant ter­ri­ble of Brazil­ian cin­e­ma), but his only “tal­ent” is turn­ing the so­phis­ti­cat­ed raw­ness of the orig­i­nal film into the trashy vul­gar­i­ty of a cheap, stinky mo­tel.

Re-An­i­ma­tor (1985)

Stu­art Gordon’s first movie is this campy hor­ror clas­sic of the ’80s that we could watch again and again and nev­er get tired, of­fer­ing ex­cel­lent vi­su­al ef­fects in a gory plot full of mem­o­rable mo­ments and with a spot-on dry hu­mor that per­fect­ly blends in with the rest.

Reach­ing for the Moon (2013)

An ir­reg­u­lar sto­ry, at times melo­dra­mat­ic and full of those clichés that plague most biopics (de­spite a nice speech scene that sounds rel­e­vant even to­day when it comes to dic­ta­tor­ships), with char­ac­ters who seem like mere drafts and nev­er be­come com­plex enough to make us care.

Ready Play­er One (2018)

De­spite its an­noy­ing ex­cess of ex­po­si­tion, this ex­cit­ing retro-fu­tur­is­tic sal­ad of pop-cul­ture ref­er­ences from the 1980s and 1990s is a won­der­ful re­turn to form for Spiel­berg, who makes this a blast for cinephiles and gamers while also of­fer­ing a wel­come anti-ne­olib­er­al mes­sage.

Re­al­i­ty (2012)

Gar­rone uses many el­e­gant long takes and an evoca­tive score to tell this fas­ci­nat­ing, dream-like char­ac­ter study about a com­mon fish­mon­ger who grad­u­al­ly be­comes ob­sessed with the idea of be­ing fa­mous – lead­ing him to mix his yearn­ings with re­al­i­ty.

The Realm (2018)

Soro­goyen makes an in­tel­li­gent po­lit­i­cal thriller that man­ages to be ex­treme­ly tense, fun­ny and so­phis­ti­cat­ed, with nu­mer­ous amaz­ing long takes (in­clud­ing a seem­ing­ly im­pos­si­ble one out­side a win­dow) and a pro­tag­o­nist whose hypocrisy rep­re­sents a lot of cor­rupt politi­cians out there.

Re­bec­ca (1940)

A stu­pen­dous film with an ex­cep­tion­al di­rec­tion, a stun­ning art di­rec­tion and cin­e­matog­ra­phy, and ex­cel­lent per­for­mances from Olivi­er, Fontaine and An­der­son, even if the sus­pense­ful plot seems to di­verge a bit from its main course in a last third full of too many twists and turns.

Rebel With­out a Cause (1955)

Some things in the movie may not have aged that well, but it still puls­es with youth­ful en­er­gy and im­press­es with the psy­cho­log­i­cal com­plex­i­ty of its char­ac­ters — and it should al­ways be re­mem­bered for James Dean’s icon­ic looks and per­for­mance that spoke to a gen­er­a­tion.

Rebels of the Neon God (1992)

Tsai’s first fea­ture film was al­ready a re­mark­able nat­u­ral­is­tic look into the empti­ness, las­si­tude and lack of hu­man con­nec­tion of Taipei youth, de­spite how it clings so much to an el­e­ment of re­venge that feels a tad poor­ly mo­ti­vat­ed – or per­haps that is pre­cise­ly the point af­ter all.

[Rec]² (2009)

Not only far from be­ing as ter­ri­fy­ing as the orig­i­nal film, this se­quel also makes the mis­take of of­fer­ing an ex­pla­na­tion for the sto­ry, com­bin­ing zom­bies, virus­es and demons all in the same crazy pot. But even so, there are a few mo­ments that work.

[REC]³: Gen­e­sis (2012)

It is hard to be­lieve that the sub­jec­tive cam­era is dropped for no rea­son af­ter the first act, and this “pre­quel” (huh?) is so out­ra­geous­ly bad that it be­comes great to laugh about with friends. The re­sult is pos­si­bly the best com­e­dy and worst movie of the year – si­mul­ta­ne­ous­ly.

The Red Bal­loon (1956)

A mar­velous, imag­i­na­tive and mag­i­cal short film (the only to have ever won an Os­car for best orig­i­nal screen­play) with a beau­ti­ful mu­si­cal score and so many lay­ers of mean­ing in its sim­ple sto­ry that it should speak to most chil­dren and make any adult feel like a child again.

Red Desert (1964)

An­to­nioni im­press­es us with his stun­ning use of col­or (as well as his mise-en-scène, and in his first film in col­or, no less) to cre­ate mean­ing and vi­su­al­ly em­pha­size what he wants to say in this in­tel­li­gent and ab­surd­ly sharp study about de­pres­sion and ex­is­ten­tial empti­ness.

The Red Light Ban­dit (1968)

Vis­i­bly in­spired by the French New Wave (es­pe­cial­ly Godard’s Breath­less) but with a de­cid­ed­ly the­atri­cal ap­proach, this sem­i­nal clas­sic of Brazil­ian “cin­e­ma mar­gin­al” is clever, provoca­tive and de­li­cious­ly cyn­i­cal de­spite the fact that it los­es some fo­cus af­ter a while.

Red Ob­ses­sion (2013)

An en­light­en­ing doc­u­men­tary that can be re­al­ly ab­sorb­ing, show­ing us the art in­volved in wine­mak­ing and how wine has been turn­ing into an eco­nom­ic in­vest­ment due to its al­ways in­creas­ing de­mand – es­pe­cial­ly from Chi­na – lead­ing to an un­prece­dent­ed im­pact on the mar­ket.

The Red Shoes (1948)

Wal­brook and Shear­er are ab­solute­ly fan­tas­tic in this daz­zling vi­su­al spec­ta­cle that boasts an as­tound­ing art di­rec­tion and cin­e­matog­ra­phy in Tech­ni­col­or – and in which the the­ater stage can as­sume unimag­in­able, mag­i­cal pro­por­tions thanks es­pe­cial­ly to phe­nom­e­nal edit­ing.

Red Spar­row (2018)

An over­long, dull and lu­di­crous es­pi­onage thriller that spends an aw­ful amount of time show­ing that Jen­nifer Lawrence’s char­ac­ter is a ter­ri­ble agent (and an id­iot) be­fore de­cid­ing to make us be­lieve that she is a near-psy­chic ge­nius and we were the stu­pid ones not to have no­ticed it.

Red State (2011)

Kevin Smith’s shot at a “se­ri­ous” movie is this in­fu­ri­at­ing, ter­ri­bly di­rect­ed and un­fo­cused mess that only man­ages to be moral­ly dis­gust­ing in its child­ish, in­con­sis­tent po­lit­i­cal ideas while also full of im­plau­si­ble sit­u­a­tions and long, un­nec­es­sary mono­logues.

Reds (1981)

A grip­ping po­lit­i­cal epic of am­bi­tious dis­cus­sions (and with a splen­did pro­duc­tion de­sign) about an ide­al­is­tic journalist/activist who be­came an ar­dent rev­o­lu­tion­ary to fight for what he be­lieved in, and it is very well edit­ed and well paced for a film that runs for over three hours.

Re­gres­sion (2015)

It seems like a poor re­hash of some­thing that Ro­man Polan­s­ki has done many times bet­ter, with an in­trigu­ing premise de­vel­oped into a mediocre thriller that be­lieves to be very smart with a lot of red her­rings and twists but is in fact in­cred­i­bly stu­pid, es­pe­cial­ly in the end.

Re­ligu­lous (2008)

An en­ter­tain­ing film in which Ma­her ap­proach­es in an eye-open­ing man­ner the un­de­ni­able dan­ger rep­re­sent­ed by re­li­gion and the log­i­cal nonex­is­tence of virtue in faith, al­though he also wa­ters it down a bit by main­ly tar­get­ing the most stu­pid kind of peo­ple that he can find.

Re­main­der (2015)

It may not be that orig­i­nal (it brought to my mind films as dis­tinct as Lost High­way, Jacob’s Lad­der and Synec­doche, New York), but the mys­tery is com­pelling, the character’s ob­ses­sive be­hav­ior makes it all very tense and the ideas it ex­plores turn it into an in­trigu­ing puz­zle.

Re­mem­ber (2015)

Christo­pher Plum­mer de­liv­ers a pow­er­ful, poignant per­for­mance in this ex­treme­ly well-di­rect­ed thriller that finds a very del­i­cate bal­ance be­tween qui­et­ly tense, un­com­fort­able and thought-pro­vok­ing, even if it could have re­al­ly done with­out that un­nec­es­sary, re­dun­dant last scene.

Re­mem­ber Me (2010)

Robert Pat­tin­son is more of a pos­er than an ac­tor, play­ing an un­charis­mat­ic rebel with­out a cause in this schmaltzy lit­tle ro­mance, a movie so em­bar­rass­ing and shame­less that it even dares to come up with a huge­ly of­fen­sive and ex­ploita­tive fi­nal twist.

Rent (2005)

Noth­ing rings true in this in­suf­fer­able mu­si­cal that does­n’t have any fo­cus and is filled with aw­ful songs of pedes­tri­an lyrics (some of them sung by ter­ri­ble singers), cen­tered on a com­plete­ly ar­ti­fi­cial and out­dat­ed idea of New York based on stereo­types and clichés.

Repo Men (2010)

De­spite its in­ter­est­ing premise, this film is in­sipid and not very orig­i­nal, and it goes on limp­ing be­tween se­ri­ous ac­tion and awk­ward satire. What makes it a bit bet­ter, though, is its last twen­ty min­utes, with a ter­rif­ic, badass end­ing that will leave you thrilled and chuck­ling at the same time.

Re­port (1967)

The rep­e­ti­tions and flick­er­ing ef­fect feel like an al­most re­fusal to show what the au­dio de­scribes (im­ages that Con­ner sim­ply did not have), which ends up il­lus­trat­ing the sen­sa­tion­al­ist cov­er­age by the me­dia be­fore the film goes on to make wit­ty vi­su­al com­par­isons to re­in­force that.

The Re­port (1977)

Ab­bas Kiarostami’s first fea­ture film was this pro­gres­sive dra­ma made only two years pri­or to the Iran­ian Rev­o­lu­tion (that is, when women could still walk around with­out cov­er­ing their heads), and it is a sad and bleak sto­ry about how peo­ple can mess up their lives.

The Re­port (2019)

I’m not a big fan of this kind of nar­ra­tive struc­ture built on flash­backs with­in flash­backs, since they can be quite dis­tract­ing some­times, but the film is in­ter­est­ing even if it suf­fers a bit from too much ex­po­si­tion and that old cliché of the ob­sti­nate in­ves­ti­ga­tor ob­sessed with his work.

Reprise (2006)

In his first film, Tri­er comes up as a promis­ing di­rec­tor, us­ing a styl­ish ap­proach to tell this re­fresh­ing dra­ma about the lit­er­ary youth – a sol­id film that has some good mo­ments but fails to be more en­gag­ing, end­ing with an op­ti­mistic, per­haps too po­et­ic con­clu­sion.

Re­pul­sion (1965)

This slow-burn­ing psy­cho­log­i­cal hor­ror is quite dis­turb­ing and un­set­tling, more be­cause of what it im­plies than what it ac­tu­al­ly shows as it delves into the frac­tured mind of a beau­ti­ful woman who can­not bear liv­ing — and be­ing crushed — in a world where men are po­ten­tial rapists.

Re­quiem for the Amer­i­can Dream (2015)

It doesn’t cov­er ground­break­ing ter­ri­to­ry for those who are ac­quaint­ed with Noam Chomsky’s thoughts and ideas or have read enough to know every­thing he says, but it is al­ways fas­ci­nat­ing to see him lay out with such clar­i­ty the ten prin­ci­ples of con­cen­tra­tion of wealth and pow­er.

Re­qui­es­cant (1967)

Even if not very well paced (es­pe­cial­ly close to the end) and a bit un­der­de­vel­oped when it comes to its (ob­vi­ous) po­lit­i­cal am­bi­tions, this is a mi­nor Spaghet­ti West­ern that man­ages to come up with a hand­ful of icon­ic mo­ments that make it en­ter­tain­ing enough to keep us in­ter­est­ed.

The Res­cuers (1977)

The 1970s were ar­guably one of the weak­est decades for Dis­ney in terms of qual­i­ty, and this is an­oth­er fail­ure from the stu­dio made in that time, with aw­ful mu­sic, bad voic­ing and an ir­ri­tat­ing, painful­ly de­riv­a­tive plot that doesn’t amount to any­thing re­al­ly worth see­ing.

The Res­cuers Down Un­der (1990)

A bare­ly pass­able se­quel that is not that much bet­ter than the de­testable first film, off to a good start and with amus­ing mo­ments (es­pe­cial­ly in the flight scenes) up un­til halfway through when it starts to be­come aim­less and for­get­table like most pre-Dis­ney Re­nais­sance pro­duc­tions.

Reser­voir Dogs (1992)

A bloody, vi­o­lent and dark­ly-hu­mored crime movie that al­ready show­cased Tarantino’s tal­ent for craft­ing styl­ish nar­ra­tive ex­er­cis­es full of en­er­gy and elon­gat­ed ex­changes of di­a­logue, even if we can see that this was an in­tel­li­gent film­mak­er still only at the start of his game.

Res­i­dent Evil (2002)

A fre­net­ic elec­tro-rock­ish sci-fi zom­bie movie that fo­cus­es more on its in­trigu­ing mys­tery than on the scares, es­pe­cial­ly dur­ing the well-paced first act. The sets have a nice video game look and the re­sult is not only bet­ter due to the atro­cious CGI of the ge­net­ic mu­tat­ed vi­ral crea­ture.

Res­i­dent Evil: Apoc­a­lypse (2004)

Just about every­thing is un­for­giv­ably aw­ful in this un­o­rig­i­nal zom­bie se­quel, an enor­mous wreck with a ter­ri­ble di­rec­tion, stu­pid char­ac­ters, lame di­a­logue and no imag­i­na­tion – and it feels and tastes like a video game, only it is the di­rec­tor, not us, who gets to play and have fun.

Res­o­lu­tion (2012)

Even if the plot drags in the first two acts, elim­i­nat­ing the ten­sion and mak­ing the mys­tery feel bland and not en­gag­ing, this is an in­ter­est­ing ef­fort that finds a cu­ri­ous bal­ance be­tween hu­mor and hor­ror, with a smart meta-twist in the third act that jus­ti­fies all that came be­fore.

Rest­less (2011)

A de­testable and ir­ri­tat­ing in­die film full of in­die clichés from be­gin­ning to end, and it seems to ex­ist only to test the viewer’s pa­tience and abil­i­ty to en­dure a pro­tag­o­nist who is so self­ish, im­ma­ture, ill-man­nered and ob­nox­ious amid con­flicts that are all ar­ti­fi­cial and ridicu­lous.

The Re­turn (2003)

It has the stun­ning, bleak and op­pres­sive beau­ty found in An­drei Tarkovsky’s films, with a cold and blueish cin­e­matog­ra­phy that of­fers no re­lief from the un­der­ly­ing ten­sion that is ba­si­cal­ly om­nipresent, and it ben­e­fits es­pe­cial­ly from three ex­cel­lent cen­tral per­for­mances.

The Re­turn of Ringo (1965)

More somber and even bet­ter than A Pis­tol for Ringo, this grip­ping retelling of Homer’s Odyssey us­ing the Old West as set­ting is not re­al­ly a se­quel and is quite dif­fer­ent from the sol­id first movie – both in nar­ra­tive and style.

Re­turn to Mon­tauk (2017)

A mild­ly in­ter­est­ing (if not at all mem­o­rable) char­ac­ter study that ben­e­fits from strong per­for­mances (es­pe­cial­ly Nina Hoss) and dis­plays a ma­ture un­der­stand­ing of the per­son­al con­flict faced by a self-cen­tered man who wants to re­live an old ro­mance from his past.

The Revenant (2015)

Iñár­ritu brings us an­oth­er spec­tac­u­lar bal­let of cam­era with this raw and ex­treme­ly an­guish­ing film of breath­tak­ing cin­e­matog­ra­phy, and al­though play­ing a char­ac­ter that at times seems to be ridicu­lous­ly in­de­struc­tible, Di­Caprio of­fers a com­mit­ted, in­tense and vis­cer­al per­for­mance that will hard­ly be matched this year.

Re­venge of the Nerds (1984)

Like oth­er crass come­dies of the ’80s about fresh­men dy­ing to have sex in col­lege, this movie is ob­vi­ous­ly sup­posed to be fun­ny, but the prob­lem is that it is only stu­pid (not hi­lar­i­ous stu­pid, just stu­pid), which is a pity con­sid­er­ing its nice mes­sage against dis­crim­i­na­tion.

Richard Jew­ell (2019)

An­oth­er in a se­ries of mediocre bi­ogra­phies made by Clint East­wood that only man­age to show­case his worst vices and right-wing prej­u­dices, which is a pity con­sid­er­ing what he could have said about the case if he weren’t so in­tent on por­tray­ing Kathy Scrug­gs as a de­spi­ca­ble bitch.

Rid­ing in Cars with Boys (2001)

Bar­ry­more doesn’t look re­al­ly con­vinc­ing nei­ther as a dreamy teenag­er nor as a frus­trat­ed 35-year-old moth­er who threw away her dream, and even though the movie de­vel­ops its char­ac­ters as com­plex peo­ple with real prob­lems like those found in real life, the end is dis­ap­point­ing.

Ri­fle (2016)

The idea of a man shoot­ing at cars dri­ving down a road with a ri­fle may be in­trigu­ing, but mere ideas don’t make a movie, and so di­rec­tor Davi Pret­to seems to be strug­gling to find any lay­er of mean­ing with a film that moves at an ex­cru­ci­at­ing­ly slow pace with­out go­ing any­where.

Right Here Right Now (2018)

Even if it does­n’t have a very good sense of di­rec­tion (es­pe­cial­ly close to the end), this is a well-bal­anced film that man­ages to be both melan­choly and hi­lar­i­ous, with great mu­sic and in­ject­ing a lot of style and en­er­gy through its con­stant use of jump cuts and split screens.

Ring (1998)

With a bizarre and creepy idea in­volv­ing cursed tech­nol­o­gy, this is a very ef­fec­tive hor­ror movie that man­ages to be tense and dis­turb­ing as time starts to run out for the char­ac­ters, and it has a ter­ri­fy­ing scene in the end that should raise every sin­gle hair on the back of our neck.

Rio (2011)

A cute, en­ter­tain­ing yet for­get­table an­i­ma­tion with too many clichés and whose charm lies in its ex­u­ber­ant vi­su­als and an ex­ot­ic (but clichéd) com­po­si­tion of a Rio de Janeiro full of sam­ba and col­ors. It is only sad, though, that the sto­ry is so con­ven­tion­al and nev­er more than or­di­nary.

Rio 2 (2014)

Al­though noth­ing spe­cial, this amus­ing se­quel is de­li­cious­ly col­or­ful and de­serves more praise for its rel­e­vant en­vi­ron­men­tal mes­sage than any nar­ra­tive mer­its, even if it has con­sid­er­ably less clichés than in the first movie and we get a hand­ful of in­spired mo­ments.

Rio Ba­bilô­nia (1982)

Please stop com­par­ing this ugly mess with La Dolce Vita, or Felli­ni would turn in his grave and die again. Let’s face it, Neville de Almei­da is a go­daw­ful film­mak­er with no un­der­stand­ing of struc­ture or de­cent di­a­logue, and even porn is more ex­cit­ing than any­thing we see here.

Rio Bra­vo (1959)

A won­der­ful good-old-fash­ioned West­ern that is com­pelling and amus­ing, blend­ing hu­mor and dra­ma in a mul­ti­lay­ered sto­ry cen­tered more on the com­plex char­ac­ters than on the ac­tion – and it has a lot of mem­o­rable di­a­logue and a per­fect pace that is care­ful but nev­er slow.

Rio, I Love You (2014)

More like an an­ti­sep­tic post­card of the city filled with stereo­types, clichés and cheesy di­a­logue that make every­thing look like a Brazil­ian soap opera of the worst kind — which is a shock con­sid­er­ing the ex­cel­lent di­rec­tors and the wast­ed tal­ent of so many great ac­tors.

Rio 100 De­grees F. (1955)

It bor­rows heav­i­ly from Ital­ian ne­o­re­al­ism by mix­ing fic­tion with doc­u­men­tary and pro­fes­sion­al ac­tors with non-ac­tors, cre­at­ing a broad and im­pres­sive por­trait of a city and its peo­ple, al­though a few things we see are a bit dat­ed now and the non-ac­tors are not al­ways that good.

Rio Zona Norte (1957)

The act­ing is some­times a bit stiff, but this is a deeply touch­ing film with Grande Ote­lo in an un­for­get­table per­for­mance, singing some won­der­ful sam­bas and break­ing our hearts as a man who em­bod­ies the in­jus­tices faced by poor peo­ple in a coun­try so full of so­cial prob­lems.

Rise of the Plan­et of the Apes (2011)

The dig­i­tal ef­fects may have been stun­ning a few years ago but now look dat­ed and ar­ti­fi­cial, which is at least com­pen­sat­ed by Andy Serkis’ im­pres­sive per­for­mance as the ape Cae­sar, who turns out to be more well de­vel­oped as a char­ac­ter than the one-di­men­sion­al hu­mans.

The Rite (2011)

This av­er­age hor­ror movie be­gins quite promis­ing, avoid­ing cheap ex­ploita­tion and hold­ing our at­ten­tion with a scary premise, but lat­er on it sad­ly sinks into com­mon­place in a gener­ic third act that is so typ­i­cal of ex­or­cism sto­ries, mak­ing the whole ef­fort of its first half seem in vain.

The Rit­u­al (2017)

This is like The Blair Witch Project but with­out imag­i­na­tion (and with char­ac­ters who don’t be­have very smart­ly in the mid­dle of a god­for­sak­en for­est), and yet the third act is so grip­ping and brings every­thing to­geth­er so el­e­gant­ly that I’m will­ing to for­give what­ev­er pre­ced­ed it.

The Riv­er (1997)

In his third film, Tsai moves his fo­cus to the nu­clear fam­i­ly and cre­ates his most de­press­ing work to date – per­haps a bit too de­press­ing for its own sake -, as it fol­lows a group of char­ac­ters whose murky lives flow like a riv­er through iso­la­tion and lack of com­mu­ni­ca­tion in mod­ern Taipei.

The Road (2009)

Cor­mac McCarthy’s adapt­ed sto­ry is suf­fo­cat­ing­ly dense and dev­as­tat­ing, a deeply haunt­ing tale about a man strug­gling to keep his son alive in a hope­less post-apoc­a­lyp­tic world, and it re­lies most­ly on two strong per­for­mances by Vig­go Mortensen and Kodi Smit-McPhee.

Road to Ytha­ca (2010)

I guess the di­rec­tors must have some (any) idea in their minds as to why we should care at all about a bunch of id­iots in a car go­ing wher­ev­er, but clear­ly it doesn’t trans­late and every­thing is just pre­ten­tious and in­fu­ri­at­ing­ly dull, like the per­fect cure for in­som­nia.

The Robe (1953)

A stun­ning vi­su­al spec­ta­cle that should be re­mem­bered only for be­ing the first Cin­e­maS­cope movie ever re­leased, since the di­rec­tion is clunky, the plot over­long and ter­ri­bly con­trived (the character’s con­ver­sion is nev­er con­vinc­ing) and the di­a­logue so full of highs and lows.

Robin Hood (1973)

A per­func­to­ry, lazy and un­re­mark­able Dis­ney an­i­ma­tion that takes the well-known leg­end and does very lit­tle with it, while, de­spite some great voic­ing – main­ly Pe­ter Usti­nov and Ter­ry-Thomas -, it is a ridicu­lous thing to have South­ern Amer­i­can ac­cents in me­dieval Eng­land.

Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves (1991)

An un­fo­cused, un­ex­cit­ing and over­long movie that is more like a mixed sal­ad of ac­cents with­out any idea if it wants to be a campy ad­ven­ture for the whole fam­i­ly in the old-fash­ioned style of Er­rol Flynn’s movies (which it should be) or the vi­o­lent PG-13 movie that it turns out to be.

Robin Hood (2010)

It is an in­ter­est­ing idea to make it about the character’s pre-out­law sto­ry, which comes to life with a won­der­ful pro­duc­tion de­sign and great act­ing from the cast. Even so, the tech­ni­cal as­pects are not enough in a movie that goes for so many ques­tion­able nar­ra­tive choic­es.

Robin­son Cru­soe (1954)

Per­haps the most “nor­mal” film made by Luis Buñuel but not as sim­ple as it may seem, since you can find a lot here about pow­er re­la­tion­ships, re­li­gion, civ­i­liza­tion and — most es­pe­cial­ly — lone­li­ness, in an adap­ta­tion that ben­e­fits from a sol­id per­for­mance by Dan O’Her­li­hy.

Robo­Cop (1987)

A smart po­lit­i­cal satire dis­guised as a com­ic book re­venge movie that com­bines hi­lar­i­ous dark hu­mor, ul­tra­vi­o­lence and sci­ence fic­tion with­out tonal prob­lems, and it is a won­der to see that, even though a prod­uct of its time, it is still thought-pro­vok­ing and able to en­ter­tain to­day.

Robo­Cop (2014)

A well-made re­make that is brave enough to be com­plete­ly dif­fer­ent from the orig­i­nal movie, and it is so great that it touch­es on in­trigu­ing ques­tions about hu­man na­ture with­out miss­ing the op­por­tu­ni­ty to also dis­cuss today’s pol­i­tics, de­spite lack­ing in en­er­gy and feel­ing.

Ro­bot & Frank (2012)

A sur­pris­ing de­but for Schreier, who proves to be a very tal­ent­ed di­rec­tor and shows an enor­mous con­trol over a sto­ry that per­fect­ly shifts from hi­lar­i­ous to mov­ing with­out erring in tone or be­ing sen­ti­men­tal – and Langella’s per­for­mance is amaz­ing.

Roc­co and His Broth­ers (1960)

Al­though un­nec­es­sar­i­ly over­long for the kind of sto­ry it wants to tell and some­times tend­ing more to­ward soap opera melo­dra­ma than ne­o­re­al­ism, es­pe­cial­ly in a cathar­tic scene in the end, this is a spell­bind­ing, mov­ing and bru­tal film with a great score and a pow­er­ful so­cial com­men­tary.

The Rock (1996)

A thrilling and ex­plo­sive film led by a trio of fan­tas­tic ac­tors (es­pe­cial­ly Cage) and sur­pris­ing­ly well di­rect­ed for a Michael Bay movie, and it also im­press­es with the way that the smart script in­tro­duces many nar­ra­tive el­e­ments which turn out to play an im­por­tant role lat­er on.

Rock of Ages (2012)

An emp­ty ex­pe­ri­ence with weak leads and a gener­ic sto­ry, and even if it of­fers a few in­spired mo­ments and the mu­sic cov­ers are a re­fresh­ing throw­back to the ’80s, noth­ing saves this song-af­ter-song mu­sic video from be­ing bland – not even Tom Cruise’s mag­net­ic pres­ence.

Rock the Cas­bah (2013)

A mild­ly en­joy­able lit­tle dra­ma made by women for women — very much like Labak­i’s Caramel — but un­for­tu­nate­ly the plot is a bit dis­persed and more su­per­fi­cial than it should be, with un­nec­es­sary (and pre­dictable) rev­e­la­tions that make it feel more like a soap opera.

Rock­et­man (2019)

The mu­si­cal num­bers look great and the film ben­e­fits a lot from El­ton John’s songs, but the truth is that the script re­al­ly need­ed pol­ish­ing, as some char­ac­ter­i­za­tions are es­sen­tial­ly car­i­ca­tures and there are a lot of hon­est scenes here co­ex­ist­ing with just as many cheesy ones.

Rocky (1976)

What makes this un­der­dog sto­ry so spe­cial is that it is not just a mere “guy movie” about box­ing but in­stead a touch­ing and pro­found­ly hon­est dra­ma about a man and his per­son­al strug­gle to go the dis­tance and be the best he can – and Stallone’s per­for­mance is su­perb.

Rocky II (1979)

Yes, Sylvester Stal­lone, you re­al­ly did it, and this ex­cit­ing and sur­pris­ing­ly mov­ing se­quel – writ­ten, di­rect­ed and act­ed by him, no less – is an im­pres­sive fol­low-up and def­i­nite proof that the suc­cess of that fan­tas­tic first film was a lot more than just beginner’s luck.

Rocky III (1982)

Ap­par­ent­ly, the worst that can hap­pen to any fight­er is to get civ­i­lized, and so the great un­der­dog dra­ma of the pre­vi­ous films is gone in this for­get­table, un­nec­es­sary third in­stall­ment now that we are left with a fa­mous box­ing star fight­ing a psy­cho killer.

Rocky IV (1985)

This jin­go­is­tic stu­pid­i­ty was ob­vi­ous­ly made to show the Amer­i­cans over­throw­ing the Rus­sians dur­ing the Cold War, but what is even worse is that in the end it seems like noth­ing more than a ridicu­lous mon­tage of mu­sic video clips with­out any pas­sion or good dra­ma.

Rocky V (1990)

As far as brain dam­age goes, Rocky V is a shame­ful id­io­cy that can­not even jus­ti­fy why it was made, giv­en how the whole fam­i­ly dra­ma seems com­plete­ly forced, the ex­cess of sap­pi­ness is painful to see and in the end it all comes down to un­nec­es­sary, point­less street-fight­ing.

Rocky Bal­boa (2006)

Af­ter so many years and aw­ful se­quels, it is a won­der­ful sur­prise to see that this sixth Rocky movie is al­most on par with the orig­i­nal one in terms of qual­i­ty, since Stal­lone seems to have fi­nal­ly un­der­stood that what made that film so mem­o­rable was the hu­man dra­ma, not the punch­es.

The Rocky Hor­ror Pic­ture Show (1975)

An adorable hy­brid of mu­si­cal, com­e­dy and hor­ror par­o­dy with a de­light­ful per­for­mance by Tim Cur­ry, who steals the show and was cer­tain­ly hav­ing a lot of fun do­ing this movie – and it is full of great songs, de­li­cious over-the-top act­ing and well-in­spired mo­ments.

Rodin (2017)

For a film that re­lies so much on el­lipses and con­stant di­a­logue, this un­der­rat­ed bi­og­ra­phy does a fine enough job ex­plor­ing Rod­in’s per­son­al­i­ty, which is in part thanks to Lin­don’s strong per­for­mance as a self-ab­sorbed artist ob­sessed with hu­man forms and al­most try­ing to be­come a real-life Pyg­malion.

Ro­man Hol­i­day (1953)

A sweet and charm­ing ro­man­tic com­e­dy with Au­drey Hep­burn in her first ma­jor role (which earned her the only Os­car of her ca­reer), and it finds the per­fect bal­ance be­tween fun­ny and cap­ti­vat­ing, with the love­ly city of Rome as eye-can­dy set­ting – where it was shot in its en­tire­ty.

Ro­man J. Is­rael, Esq. (2017)

Den­zel Wash­ing­ton de­liv­ers one of the strongest and most mul­ti­fac­eted per­for­mances of his ca­reer in a de­cent, if flawed film that knows how to ex­plore the per­son­al­i­ty and mo­ti­va­tions of such a com­plex pro­tag­o­nist, even though it near­ly gets lost in a con­fused third act.

Rome Ad­ven­ture (1962)

It may be adorable in its first hour with that love­ly song and those beau­ti­ful lo­ca­tions, but this corny melo­dra­ma soon shows us why it is so ridicu­lous­ly out­dat­ed now with its whole­some, mor­al­iz­ing view of love, sex and old-fash­ioned chival­ry (an ugly eu­phemism for sex­ism).

Rome, Open City (1945)

This quin­tes­sen­tial clas­sic of Ital­ian Ne­o­re­al­ism is an un­set­tling and hard-hit­ting por­trait of an era, shot in a grit­ty doc­u­men­tary-like style and with a gallery of fas­ci­nat­ing char­ac­ters that rep­re­sent, each of them, a facet of Ro­man so­ci­ety un­der Nazi Ger­man oc­cu­pa­tion.

The Room (2003)

Be­hold, ladies and gen­tle­men, the new Ed Wood of the 21st cen­tu­ry, a guy so laugh­ably in­ept in just about every­thing (his act­ing is atro­cious) that he made me even feel sor­ry for him – but then I only need to think about how misog­y­nist this aw­ful movie is to not care any­more.

Room (2015)

Brie Lar­son and Ja­cob Trem­blay of­fer two as­ton­ish­ing per­for­mances in what is one of the best and most in­tel­li­gent rep­re­sen­ta­tions of Plato’s Cave that I re­mem­ber see­ing (and I love the scope of its philo­soph­i­cal am­bi­tions), told from the point of view of a child who has nev­er seen the world be­yond a room.

Room 237 (2012)

This pa­thet­ic and very sil­ly mish­mash of the­o­ries may be amus­ing for a while, es­pe­cial­ly for the most pas­sion­ate cinephiles and fans of Kubrick’s film, but there is no deny­ing that they are most­ly laugh­able rub­bish, slop­pi­ly put to­geth­er and nev­er com­ing to a whole.

Rope (1948)

The long takes may be a re­mark­able stunt but those hid­den cuts are in fact ex­treme­ly dis­tract­ing and ob­vi­ous – and, con­trary to pop­u­lar be­lief, the film does have con­ven­tion­al, un­masked cuts. Even so, it ben­e­fits from tense mo­ments and a well-writ­ten plot with great di­a­logue.

Rosa More­na (2010)

A sol­id sur­prise that de­serves cred­it for how it is nev­er afraid of tak­ing risks – and trust me, there are a lot of things in this film that could go wrong, but even the most seem­ing­ly ab­surd nar­ra­tive op­tions serve a pur­pose and lead to some­thing im­pres­sive­ly con­sis­tent in the end.

Rose­mary’s Baby (1968)

An ex­cel­lent and un­set­tling su­per­nat­ur­al thriller in which para­noia grows in a mad­den­ing crescen­do, and the most iron­ic is how Polan­s­ki made Re­pul­sion and this film (both about rape and women get­ting hor­ren­dous­ly abused) be­fore be­ing con­vict­ed of rap­ing a mi­nor years lat­er.

Rough Di­a­mond (1933)

Ter­ri­bly dat­ed to­day, this sex­ist and moral­is­tic film may be a les­son in edit­ing, but it is near­ly im­pos­si­ble to care about or have any sym­pa­thy for a de­spi­ca­ble man who mur­ders his wife be­cause of his wound­ed pride and al­ways gets into fights for be­ing a stu­pid ma­cho.

The Rover (2014)

A suf­fo­cat­ing­ly tense and bleak thriller that throws us in a grit­ty post-col­lapse Aus­tralia with two stel­lar per­for­mances: Guy Pearce in a role that is so ab­solute­ly com­plex, in­tense and re­veal­ing, coun­ter­poised by an im­pres­sive act­ing de­liv­ered by Robert Pat­tin­son.

A Roy­al Af­fair (2012)

A sump­tu­ous pe­ri­od dra­ma with el­e­gant di­a­logue and a de­lib­er­ate pace that makes it al­ways flu­id and ab­sorb­ing. More im­por­tant, the three main char­ac­ters are not only im­pres­sive­ly com­plex but also leave us ea­ger to know more about who they were and all they did in real life.

The Roy­al Tenen­baums (2001)

An ap­peal­ing melan­choly com­e­dy with ec­cen­tric char­ac­ters who are so very well de­vel­oped, in a strange, un­con­ven­tion­al nar­ra­tive that in­vests in an off­beat at­mos­phere (as if out of a dream­like ver­sion of New York) to tack­le mat­ters like lone­li­ness and amends.

Ruby Sparks (2012)

What first seems like a sim­ple one-joke ro­man­tic com­e­dy turns out to be about so much more: a deeply hon­est and sad sto­ry about the self­ish (but real) need that some peo­ple have to con­trol some­one else so they can feel loved and make an ide­al re­la­tion­ship work.

The Ru­ins (2008)

This de­cent and tense hor­ror movie is well paced and re­lies on a good cast to turn a rather sil­ly premise into some­thing sur­pris­ing­ly ter­ri­fy­ing. It is only a shame, though, that it ends with such an un­sat­is­fy­ing con­clu­sion (I pre­fer the al­ter­na­tive end­ing).

The Rules of At­trac­tion (2002)

De­spite the great sound­track, de­cent per­for­mances and ex­pert di­rec­tion, this film based on Bret Eas­t­on El­lis feels a bit ster­ile, de­pict­ing with clever irony the moral de­cline of our so­ci­ety but not as ef­fec­tive in mak­ing us re­late to its shal­low, un­lik­able char­ac­ters.

The Rules of the Game (1939)

Con­ceal­ing a lot of com­plex­i­ty in its ap­par­ent­ly sim­ple plot, this fab­u­lous tragi­com­e­dy (which al­most got lost in His­to­ry) is a wit­ty and clever com­men­tary on the rules of bour­geoisie and so­cial re­la­tions – a clas­sic of French Cin­e­ma to be seen and re-seen many times.

The Rum Di­ary (2011)

A ram­bling and un­en­gag­ing film that seems like a com­e­dy that Gra­ham Greene could have writ­ten if he had lost his tal­ent or wit for smart so­cial satires. Clear­ly in need of some edit­ing, the sto­ry is over­long and un­fo­cused, even if it has some few in­spired fun­ny mo­ments.

Run All Night (2015)

In his third col­lab­o­ra­tion with Liam Nee­son (who is great in his badass per­sona), Col­let-Ser­ra does play the ex­hi­bi­tion­ist some­times, but at least he man­ages to make this av­er­age movie dy­nam­ic and fresh de­spite all of its ex­pos­i­to­ry di­a­logue and how for­get­table it is.

Run­away Train (1985)

A sol­id but con­ven­tion­al ac­tion thriller like many oth­ers made in the 1980s, os­cil­lat­ing un­even­ly be­tween ef­fi­cient mo­ments and scenes that sim­ply do not work – and even if re­ly­ing on a lot of co­in­ci­dences and with a ridicu­lous vil­lain, it of­fers great per­for­mances from Voight and Roberts.

Run­ner Run­ner (2013)

The plot is in­deed pre­dictable and not one bit re­mark­able for that mat­ter, but even so this is a some­what de­cent (and well-edit­ed) thriller that ben­e­fits a lot from some good per­for­mances – which hold us in our seats as we see it un­veil like a fine pok­er game.

Rush (2013)

It is the in­tense and sur­pris­ing­ly sym­pa­thet­ic per­for­mances by both Hemsworth and Brühl what coun­ter­bal­ances Ron Howard’s heavy-hand­ed di­rec­tion and an ir­reg­u­lar script whose di­a­logue feels most­ly ar­ti­fi­cial and whose nar­ra­tion is al­ways re­dun­dant and dis­card­able.

Rush­more (1998)

An adorable and re­fresh­ing com­e­dy that works so well due to Ja­son Schwartzman’s and Bill Murray’s cap­ti­vat­ing per­for­mances, and it is very well di­rect­ed and re­lies on that unique and quirky sense of hu­mor that is Wes Anderson’s trade­mark style.

The Rus­sia House (1990)

The plot is an in­ter­est­ing com­bi­na­tion of es­pi­onage and ro­mance, and it ben­e­fits from a great score and some beau­ti­ful lo­ca­tions, but it is just too bad that it is made into such an ex­treme­ly dull af­fair in which the ro­mance seems forced and the es­pi­onage is te­dious to death.

Russ­ian Ark (2002)

Russ­ian Ark should be re­mem­bered not only as a breath­tak­ing lo­gis­tic ac­com­plish­ment that knocked me off my chair with its stun­ning sin­gle take us­ing a Steadicam and dig­i­tal tech­nol­o­gy, but also as a sump­tu­ous trav­el through Russ­ian his­to­ry and an un­for­get­table homage to the Her­mitage Mu­se­um and to Art it­self.

Russ­ian Dolls (2005)

De­spite its good mo­ments, this is an un­nec­es­sary, for­get­table se­quel that re­lies too much on Xavier’s dis­as­trous search for love in­stead of fo­cus­ing on the re­union of the friends of the first film. Good to see, though, that it doesn’t get ru­ined by its poor nar­ra­tive choic­es.

Rust (2018)

The first 40 min­utes make for a sol­id be­gin­ning, with good di­a­logue and a com­pe­tent sense of struc­ture, but then the film los­es its way and nev­er man­ages to find it back, fail­ing to re­al­ly ex­plore Renet’s mo­ti­va­tions and mis­tak­ing in­ten­tion­al slow­ness for com­plex de­vel­op­ment.

Rust and Bone (2012)

The vi­su­al ef­fects are re­al­ly im­pres­sive and both ac­tors de­liv­er great per­for­mances, but their char­ac­ters are poor­ly de­vel­oped, keep­ing us dis­tant and in­spir­ing more pity than em­pa­thy. Be­sides, the end­ing is de­cep­tive, a re­fusal to deal with the con­flict and bring it to a res­o­lu­tion.