*The American Film Institute’s Top Ten American Mysteries*
#10 - The Usual Suspects: The Usual Suspects is good for most of the movie, but the last fifteen minutes or so are what makes it great. That ending fills my heart with joy and triumph.
#9 - Dial M For Murder: I definitely liked how everything in this movie was introduced early on - the movie never once ad to explain itself - but Dial M For Murder pales in comparison to the other Hitchcock movies. It just doesn't quite have the same spark.
#8 - Blue Velvet: Blue Velvet was, to me, occasionally needlessly violent, and not really all the interesting to me, but was pretty good, I guess. I just wasn't captured by this movie: I don't think I even really want to watch it again.
#7 - North By Northwest: I watch North By Northwest in Thrillers.
#6 - The Maltese Falcon: I really liked The Maltese Falcon. It has a really great cast, what with Humphry Bogart and Peter Lorre, it's classic film noir, and it's really fun to me. Awesome movie, I liked it a lot.
#5 - The Third Man: A lot like The Usual Suspects, most of The Third Man isn't that impressive - except for the ten minutes that Orson Welles is in. Those ten minutes are some of the best ten minutes of the entire list. I cannot wait until I see Orson Welles in something else.
#4 - Laura: You know, I had totally forgotten about Laura. It was a nice movie, definitely, but it hasn't stuck with me, obviously. It had a good twist, though, and Vincent Price before he started taking roles in horror "movie," and without a mustache.
#3 - Rear Window: Rear Window was my favorite movie of the set. The mystery is fantastic and the characters are great, and you really get to know the secondary characters. The ending is very happy and peaceful and the movie is very self-contained. It's terrific.
#2 - Chinatown: Chinatown definitely stood out for me as a good movie, but it wasn't really a movie I liked. I didn't dislike it either, though. I thought that Jack Nicholson was great and I liked the way it used old film noir tropes, and I thought it had really good imagery, with the desert, and the nose-bandage. It definitely feels a lot grittier and darker than a lot of the older movies, even the Hitchcocks.
#1 - Vertigo: Vertigo is absolutely the best movie of the set. It's unsettling and disturbing, it has a twist that comes out of nowhere, but still fits with the rest of plot, and everyone in it is fantastic. One of the reasons people actually like this movie so much is that it's supposed to be really personal for Alfred Hitchcock - Apparently he was very controlling in his relationships. I thought it was fantastic, and it's really stuck with me.