By popular demand, here is the official Mystery Grove Film Recommendations list. Watch all of these in order if you want to truly understand the world we live in today.
Miami Blues (1990) is a deep-fried thriller about a handsome psychopath who steals a detective's badge and goes on a robbery spree through the South Florida criminal underworld. One of the hidden gems of reactionary cinema.
The Duellists (1978) follows two rival French officers through the Napoleonic Wars. A minor insult sets off a decades-long series of duels between the men, neither willing to abandoned his honor.
Excalibur (1981) condenses several Arthurian legends into a single spectacular epic. One of the most hypnotic and visionary films of all time.
Barcelona (1994) is a wonderful comedy that follows two estranged cousins, one an insecure businessman and the other a brash naval officer, who reunite in Barcelona for a series of misadventures. Great reflection on family, romance, and getting older.
Nightfall (1956) tells the story of an artist framed and left for dead by bank robbers. With the help of his model girlfriend, he must elude both police and the criminals while hunting for a hidden fortune.
Andrei Rublev (1966) follows the Russian icon painter through decades of struggle, showing how a man who came from one of the bleakest times in human history could end up creating art that still inspires today.
Sorcerer (1977) is a slick and mean-spirited thriller about four desperate men hired to drive highly unstable explosives to an oil well deep in the jungle.
The King (2019) is a modern retelling of the rise of Henry V. Very cool battle scenes and refreshing take on a familiar story.
Point Break (1991) is a sprawling action epic about an FBI agent who goes undercover to hunt down a gang of surfers funding their free-spirited lifestyle through bank robbery.
Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid (1973) tells the story of two legendary outlaws in the last days of the Old West. The bodies stack up as one tries to buy his freedom with the other's life.
First Man (2018) is the criminally underrated retelling of Neil Armstrong's journey to his historic moonwalk is an ode to American masculinity. Headline of the Harvard Crimson's review: "In ‘First Man,’ Triumph for White Male Dreams"
Legionnaire (1998) is a pulp action classic following a boxer who is forced to enlist in the legendary French Foreign Legion to escape the gangsters hunting him.
The Lady Eve (1941) an extremely funny romantic comedy about a beautiful card shark trying to seduce a bumbling millionaire.
Russian Ark (2002) follows a ghost and his long-dead aristocrat companion through the Winter Palace in St. Petersburg, bouncing through several hundred years of shared history and culture. Innovative and beautiful; shot in a single take.
Total Recall (1990) is a muscular sci-fi masterpiece about a construction worker who finds himself embroiled in a bloody interstellar conspiracy after paying for memories of a dream vacation to Mars.
The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973) follows a small time New England crook as he scrambles to betray enough of his criminal associates to secure a reduced sentence. As gritty as a crime thriller can get.
Master and Commander (2003) is the king of naval combat movies. Tracks the crew of a British warship hunting and being hunted by a much more powerful French vessel at the height of the Napoleonic Wars.
Брат (Brother) follows a recently-discharged Russian conscript as he moves to the big city in Yeltsin-era Russia to follow his hitman brother.
Брат 2 (2000) picks up immediately where the first film left off, with the conscript and his brother embarking on a twisted adventure to the South Side of Chicago. Deals with the diaspora experience and finding your place in the world.
Maverick (1994) is a cocky western comedy starring Mel Gibson as a fast-talking and cowardly gambler trying to scrape together enough money to enter a once-in-a-lifetime poker tournament.
Das Boot (1981) follows a German U-boat in the closing stages of WW2. Realistic (an actual U-boat "Ace" served as technical advisor) and moving film about brotherhood in times of extreme hardship. Watch the Director's Cut.
To Live and Die in L.A. (1984) is an ultra-stylish thriller about two Secret Service agents who go rogue to take down the counterfeiter who murdered their mentor. White knuckle. Probably has the best car chase of all time.
Sinister (2012) follows a desperate true-crime writer after he moves into a "murder house" with his family to work on a new book, only to discover a cache of snuff films. Suburban living at its scariest.
Hail the Conquering Hero (1944) is about a good-hearted dockworker unable to fight in WW2 due to hayfever, but too ashamed to go home. He is befriended by a squad of recently-returned Marines, whose scheme to return him to his family without losing face quickly snowballs.
Proof of Life (2000) is an understated and realistic look at the Kidnapping & Ransom industry, following a specialist as he negotiates for the life of an American engineer taken hostage by South American guerillas. One of the last old school thrillers.
Inherent Vice (2017) is a beautiful and surreal detective comedy set in the last days of California's Hippie Era. My favorite movie of all time.
Under the Silver Lake (2019) is a pitch black conspiracy caper set post-gentrification Los Angeles. Buried by the studio on release because of its message.
The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974) is a perfect comedy-thriller about a New York Transit Police captain negotiating with professional criminals who have taken a subway car hostage and demanded a $1 million ransom. Not a single wasted moment.
Unknown Soldier (2017) tells the largely-ignored story of the Continuation War, a massive conflict between Finland and the Soviet Union that lasted from 1941-1944. Probably the most realistic depiction of WW2 era infantry combat ever filmed.
Miller's Crossing (1991) is a perfect gangster movie about a mob fixer who finds himself trapped in a web of conflicting loyalties and betrayals, forced to choose between death and losing what little innocence he has left.
Support Your Local Sherriff! (1969) is a classic western comedy about a smooth-talking drifter who charms his way to the top of a corrupt town. Can watch it with your family.
Blackhat (2015) follows an elite cybercriminal released from prison to help investigators unravel a global financial terror network. All about freedom and dignity in the digital age. Watch the director's cut, much better than the theatrical release.
Silence (2016) is a wonderful film about two Portuguese missionaries in the early 17th century who infiltrate Japan during the height of Christian persecution to search for their lost mentor, rumored to have renounced his faith under duress.
Ran (1985) is an inspired adaptation of King Leer by Akira Kurosawa, one of the greatest directors of all time, set in feudal Japan. The climactic battle sequence is unforgettable.
Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985) chronicles the life of the Japanese author through vivid adaptations of his works.
The Killer (1989) is the king of Hong Kong action movies, following a good-hearted hitman looking for a clean getaway and the dogged detective hunting him. Extremely influential.
Bloodsport (1988) is the incredible true-ish story of a US Army Captain who goes AWOL to fight in a brutal underground full-contact tournament in Hong Kong. The best martial arts movie ever.
Overlord (1975) is a genuinely beautiful film that intersperses real footage of the air campaign over Britain and France with the narrative of a British conscript, haunted by visions of his own death during the upcoming D-Day landings.
Kung Pow! Enter the Fist (2002) is a martial arts parody following "the Chosen One" as he attempts to escape an army of mysterious assassins. A truly timeless classic.
The Naked Gun (1988) is a flawless comedy following the intrepid detectives of Los Angeles' elite Police Squad as they stumble through their mission to prevent the assassination of the Queen of England. The sequels are excellent as well.
Night of the Running Man (1995) is a forgotten action gem about a Las Vegas cab driver who finds a small fortune in his backseat only to be forced to evade a suave hitman across thousands of miles. You will have fun watching this.
F/X (1986) is another lost pulp classic about an Australian special effects artist who finds himself embroiled in a complicated and dangerous conspiracy after being hired to fake a retiring mobster's death. Brian Dennehy excels as the cop trying to bring him in.
Internal Affairs (1990) follows an LAPD detective attempting to take down an extremely intelligent and psychopathic officer who created an empire of corruption to provide for his multiple wives possibly dozens of children. True thriller.
Croupier (1998) follows a misanthropic writer who gets a job at a sleezy casino while his life and relationships slowly begin to spiral out of control. Great reflection on the nature of fate and chance. A genuine must-see.