At first, compiling a list of favourite films that begin with the letter A appears to be a superfluous exercise – given some thought though it serves to highlight some classic movies, ones that deserve to be watched again and again!
10. Armageddon (Michael Bay)
Epic, loud and full of heroic bravado – would a Michael Bay movie be anything else? Harry Stamper’s (Bruce Willis) band of oil-riggers are the last hope to save Earth from total annihilation. Pure blockbuster entertainment that keeps the excitement at fever pitch once the mission reaches lift-off. The menacing asteroid deserves a credit of its own its that impressive. The film is anything but a disaster of a movie.
9. American History X (Tony Kaye)
An uncompromising look at racism as white Neo-Nazi Derek Vinyard (Edward Norton) horrifically attacks a black youth – what follows is his experiences in jail and how he disowns everything he once stood for – later he realises his younger brother (Edward Furlong) may be going down that same path and he attempts to save him from believing in hatred and violence. Brilliantly handled and brutally honest, a film everyone should see at least once.
8. Army of Darkness (Sam Raimi)
Ash (Bruce Campbell) returns for what could be called Evil dead 3. He’s now been dragged to the 1300s and needs to get back to the present after the unsettling events of Evil Dead 2. The humour is still intact third time around; Ash must find the Book of the Dead (the Necronomicon) to enable his time-travel back home. Loads of jokes and dry comments from Ash keep the film moving along at a brisk pace. The eventual battle with the army of darkness is great fun to watch.
7. American Psycho (Mary Harron)
An enthralling mix of outright psychotic violence and social commentary of the 80s greed philosophy. From the Brett Easton Ellis book – this film is a masterpiece in showing the downfall of wealthy executive Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale) as he struggles to keep himself sane in his insane world. An eerily effective performance from Bale gives the film a mesmerising aura that many films fail to deliver. His best film to date.
6. A.I: Artificial Intelligence (Steven Spielberg)
Dwelling on the morals of enabling machines to have emotions; Haley Joel Osment is cast as the robot child David – programmed to love its parents unconditionally. When that love isn’t wanted anymore, David is discarded and begins a journey where machines aren’t quite given the respect he thought they were. A.I asks the questions about the ethics of recreating an artificial sentient being and what a possible future could be.
5. Any Given Sunday (Oliver Stone)
A controversial film about life in American football from the perspective of players, coaches and owners of the fictional Miami Sharks. Excellent football footage is combined with striking performances from Al Pacino (as coach Tony D’Amato) and Jamie Foxx (the upstart quarterback Willie Beamen). The NFL didn’t approve of this film – probably too close to the bone in its sensationalist nature of what goes on behind-the-scenes of the football field. A sports classic.
4. A Time to Kill (Joel Schumacher)
Based on the novel by John Grisham, this screen version is a powerful statement on race – Carl Lee Hailey (Samuel L. Jackson) kills his daughter’s two attackers while the appear in court. What follows is lawyer Jake Brigance’s (Matthew McConaughey) attempt to defend him with the backdrop of racial violence, the KKK and death threats. Captivating and well-acted, this will get you thinking about just how fair the system really is?
3. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (Chuck Russell)
Everyone’s worst nightmare returned in this second sequel – Freddy Krueger was back and more inventive than ever. Set in a psychiatric ward filled with young teenagers (where Nancy from the original movie was working) Krueger (Robert Englund) would tap into their dreams, find their weaknesses and devise his most fiendish ways to kill them off. Still remains the best of the seemingly endless sequels.
2. Aliens (James Cameron)
In a direct response to the single Alien scenario of the original “Alien” film, Cameron’s take on the burgeoning franchise was to bring Colonial marines and send them into the heart of the Alien hive – with a gigantic Queen alien thrown in! Sigourney Weaver reprised her role as Rilpey to great effect. An incredible thrill-ride with marine vs. alien battles exploding on the screen, sneak-and-destroy tactics by both antagonists until a grand finale to top any other film you care to remember.
1. Alien (Ridley Scott)
A freight crew encounter the titular “Alien” in this blueprint of how to make a Sci-fi/ horror monster movie. From the acting, special effects (in all their gory extreme) and atmospheric musical score – no film has ever surpassed this masterpiece in movie-making. Considering this was released in 1979, it still is an effective and faultless piece of cinema history. Actress Sigourney Weaver’s career would be launched from her supporting-role as Ellen Ripley.
So there it is, you couldn’t call it the definitive list by any means but these represent some of the better films you can watch that begin with the letter A. Hope you can enjoy some of these in the near future.