Movies Worth Buying

MoviesToConsider lists movies we've liked. Then again, most movies are only worth watching once. Some can be watched over and over. There are movies you're content with renting from time to time, and there are those you simply must have on tape, DVD or whatever - this page is for listing those, in classic "if you were marooned on a desert island with only a DVD player and one disc" fashion.

[Rules of the game: Each person can place only one movie on the list.]

(If your movie is already on the list, please feel free to add your testimonial for it at the end.)

Index of movies on this page

Testimonials for movies above:
Spirited Away

This movie resonates with those of us who know from firsthand experience that TheJobMarketSucks. There is a reference to the plummeting economy in the beginning of the film, but I'm thinking in particular of the scene where Chihiro tries to get a job from Yubaba. I've had interviews like parts of that, and other parts seem to confirm things I've always suspected are true about employers...
ShawshankRedemption? - One of the best movies I have ever seen. Inspiring. Makes you want to believe in the virtues of Patience, Determination and having a long term plan. If you have seen the movie, you will understand what I am talking about. If you haven't, see it now.

If I had to throw away all my tapes, CDs and videos, and keep only one, the one would be, without a doubt, JesusChristSuperstar. While I don't normally see movies multiple times, and I've often said that it makes no sense to buy movies, as one can rent them several times for less money, this is one of the very few that I've seen lots of times, and intend to view again. -- JeffGrigg

I thought JCS was poorly done. Perhaps I just couldn't get past the racism... Yeah, the way the Romans looked down on the Palestinians pissed me off, too (wink).

I've got to agree with Casablanca. It's a classic movie with an excellent cast, that really captures the way WWII ought to have been. SavingPrivateRyan? was probably more the way WWII actually was, but that's a different story. The gems in Casablanca aren't Bogie and Bergman, but ClaudeRains?, who is a fantastically funny actor, sort of a pocket-sized CaryGrant?, and the character actors, like DooleyWilson?, PeterLorre?, SidneyGreenstreet?, and S. Z. Sakall (who plays Carl the Waiter).

An excellent book on the story of making Casablanca is called ''Round up the Usual Suspects" ISBN 1562829416

-- SeanOleary

"TheUsualSuspects is a pretty cool movie too. (Nothing to do with Casablanca, however.)" (except the name inspiration)

I don't know what it is about FightClub I like so much, but I've watched it over and over since purchasing it. The DVD is really nice; it has four different commentary tracks: one with just the director, one with the director and the actors, one with the book author and the screenwriter, and one with the production crew. The conversation between the author and the screenwriter was especially interesting. -- KrisJohnson

FightClub was awesome. Watch this movie.

I'm glad that the one voluntary "rule" that governs this page is that each contributer can only present one movie: for it really forces one to look inward and choose. I chose "TheRaceForTheDoubleHelix" for a number of reasons beginning with the fact that I love movies that (1) make me think, (2) are rooted in fact, (3) are entertaining and even funny, and (4) inspire me to create. This movie - more than any other I know - combines the proper amount of all of these and is so good that I want to see it over and over again. It never grows stale! -- BillZimmerly

I put PulpFiction on the list for sheer entertainment value. Is it a "great" movie? Probably not. But it has a great cast; great characters; a great, complex plot; and so many memorable scenes. It really "leaps" of the screen. I love it.

I was sad to see that StopMakingSense? had been added to this list with no explanation.

Good Lord! What an amazing film!

If you are even slightly interested in the Talking Heads, you owe it to yourself to see this film. Even if you hate the Talking Heads, you should watch this to see an example of brilliant concert staging.

Many people have commented on how the concert develops from David Byrne beginning the concert alone onstage, to having additional pieces/players gradually join him, until the whole band is there, ready to "rock out". I have always seen it, though, as if the stage were expanding.

Sure, Byrne starts out alone onstage, and other players join him. But as each one does, the stage doesn't seem to get fuller, it seems to expand to encompass the audience, drawing them into the performance, making it not a band performing for an audience, but one total unit, band and audience together, performing the songs as one.

I have never seen another rock performance, live or filmed, that had the same immediacy, the same "revivalist" intensity as this one.


Earth gets a radio message. It's instructions on how to build a machine [spoilers deleted]. Brave new horizons are cresting.

This movie explores many social changes (personal to global) that develop from a single event.

It's science fiction dealing with an alien race, but don't expect to see any aliens.

A very mediocre movie IMHO, especially compared to the book. The philosophical dialogue serves to make the movie seem "deep" without really making any sense. The acting is hammy, and you get all the normal Hollywood storyline tricks thrown in.

The book is a quick read and one of my favorite sci-fi novels. Incredibly interesting. In fact if you've seen the movie, don't worry about already knowing what the book is about because they're almost completely different.


The best movie ever made. Great story, great message, great acting, great music, great photography, great makeup, great controversy. Uses every technical trick in the book (literally RKO gave Welles a book with pictures describing every camera move, printing technique, special effect, etc.) to tell the story. Brilliant and joyous.

Let's be honest, this movie is overlong and boooooooooooooooooooooooring.

I wouldn't remove a single frame.


This is my favourite movie. A supreme dark comedy.

I love Leon far beyond my ability to justify its inclusion in any list of good movies. And that's when the movies listed above comprise 10% of my film collection. (No I don't own them all; I don't agree with some of the entries)
I really enjoyed Juzo Itami's Tampopo, a Japanese comedy about the joys of food. The main plot is about a woman who wants to run the best ramen shop in Japan, and there are several funny side vignettes. It's also a satire on "spaghetti" westerns.

I first saw "It's a wonderful life" at my girlfriend's parent's house one Xmas. My (fairly new) girlfriend and family were busy around the house with Xmas nonsense and I found this film on tv, had nothing better to do so watched it, knowing nothing about it. I forgot the rest of the world existed for 90 minutes, but found the whole experience slightly embarrasing as by the end I was in tears. Capra made wonderful nonsense. It's a lot darker than you might expect.

If I were really on a desert island, for somem unknown period of time, it'd probably have to be some sort of porn.

CategoryMovie CategoryOffTopic

I suspect that this goes against the grain of the page somewhar, but I'm going to nominate Requiem For A Dream. It is by far the best film I have ever seen. However, that being said, I'm not sure that I would ever want to view it a second time. -- IanPhillips

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