#2. Miller’s Crossing (1990)
(down one spot from previous ranking)
I think it was the Coen Brothers’ third film, 1990’s Miller’s Crossing, that cemented them as my favorite filmmakers. I was a college freshman, interested in film as a career, when I sat in the theater and let this gorgeous, funny, dark, poetic film wash over me.
That same fall, Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas came out. I’m not sure which I saw first, but I remember being amazed at how such completely different gangster films could both work so well. A couple of years later, I wrote a paper on mob movies for a film class, focusing on those two extraordinary achievements.