The folks at Film School Rejects decided to Rank The Movies Directed By John Carpenter. This sounded like fun, so I decided to play along. Below are my rankings and thoughts…
The Ward (2010)
Village of the Damned (1995)
Memoirs of an Invisible Man (1992)
Prince of Darkness (1987)
In the Mouth of Madness (1994)
The films above I haven’t seen.
15. Dark Star (1974) I don’t know if I have ever seen the whole thing. It just didn’t resonate with me. Most folks really like it.
14. The Fog (1980) I saw this on its theatrical release and it left me flat. Which surprised me because I was expecting a lot.
13. Someone’s Watching Me! (1978) Watched this before I knew who John Carpenter was. It was good.
12. Vampires (1998) I thought James Woods was miscast.
11. Elvis (1979) Who knew Kurt Russell could impersonate Elvis (and later Clint Eastwood)?
10. Christine (1983) Saw this at the theater and thought it was well done.
9. Ghosts of Mars (2001) Sci-fi action directed by Carpenter. What’s not to like?
8. Escape from L.A. (1996) I was so excited about the return of Snake Plissken under the creative team of Carpenter and Russell. Sadly the film played up the camp more than I would have liked.
7. Big Trouble in Little China (1986) My wife and I along with another couple saw BTiLC on its opening weekend. I really liked it. No one else in the group did. Kurt Russell steals the show.
6. They Live (1988) Surprisingly good. Roddy Piper was the perfect lead. I felt the ending was a bit off but not enough to really matter.
5. Starman (1984) Big budget and big stars. Perhaps my wife’s favorite Carpenter flick because it’s a good one.
4. Halloween (1978) Another Carpenter classic. I first saw it in a drive-in and had sound problems through part of the film. The movie still worked. That is a sign of great direction!
3. The Thing (1982) I saw it on it’s initial theatrical release in a nearly empty theater. Reaction from fans and critics wasn’t good. Over the years that has all changed. I thought it was a mistake remaking a classic but Carpenter pulled it off.
2. Assault on Precinct 13 (1976) This is the movie that made me a John Carpenter fan. Thank God for VHS. Low budget but man, does Carpenter make it work. Darwin Joston was perfect casting. I always thought we’d see more from him.
1. Escape from New York (1981) I saw EfNY several times on it’s first theatrical release and loved it. I still do.