The Aisle Seat - Movie Reviews by Mike McGranaghan
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THE AISLE SEAT - by Mike McGranaghan


The Best Film You've Never Seen

No matter how many movies you see, there are always plenty you haven't. Imagine that you could have some of the best-known directors working today recommend their favorite obscure or overlooked movies to you. That's the premise behind Robert K. Elder's new book, The Best Film You've Never Seen.

Thirty-five directors make their picks, and Elder interviews each one extensively about their selection. Some of the films are obscure, such as Guillermo del Toro's choice of the 1996 “spiritual horror movie” Arcane Sorcerer. Other choices are impossible to find except on the black market; 21 Jump Street director Phil Lord picks an unreleased Sean Penn/Crispin Glover flick called The Beaver Trilogy. Still others recommend “so bad, they're good movies,” as John Waters does with the Elizabeth Taylor dud Boom!, and Warm Bodies director Jonathan Levine does with the 1980 Village People flick Can't Stop the Music. The book has more recommendations from Danny Boyle, Kevin Smith, John Woo, Richard Linklater, Edgar Wright, Rian Johnson and Alex Gibney, and the movies selected include Joe Versus the Volcano, Killer Klowns from Outer Space, The Super Cops, Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me and Under the Volcano.

Elder keeps some of his questions constant from interview to interview (“How would you describe [NAME OF FILM] to someone who's never seen it?”), then tailors his follow-ups to the specific movie. The subjects are, naturally, passionate in their responses, which makes The Best Film You've Never Seen a brisk, compelling read. Best of all, it really does make you want to track down some of these gems. (John Waters is personally responsible for me seeing Clean, Shaven and the 1989 psycho-dog thriller Baxter, so if he recommends Boom! I'm definitely on board.)

The Best Film You've Never Seen is available in bookstores and online book outlets now. I'm obviously not a director, but you can read my own Best Film You've Never Seen pick right here.

Buy a copy of my book, "Straight-Up Blatant: Musings From The Aisle Seat," on sale now at! Paperback and Kindle editions also available at!

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