5. Chasing Amy (1997)

The Pitch: Say what you will about Clerks, and Kevin Smith has said a lot to us, but Chasing Amy is really his best film to date. It’s personal and sweet underneath all that talk about fisting. A few Indie Spirit Awards, a career launch for Ben Affleck, and a 4800% return on the budget later, and you have a bona fide hit. -CA

4. Heavenly Creatures (1994)

The Pitch: Peter Jackson’s most realistic and grounded film is still one of his best. Two girls in 1950’s New Zealand live in a fantasy world where they plan a real-world murder. It’s made all the more affecting when you realize it’s based on a true story and one of the girls grew up to become Anne Perry, a bestselling writer of mysteries and thrillers. -RH

3. There Will Be Blood (2007)

The Pitch: I don’t have enough space to write all the awards this thing was nominated for or won, but if you have any doubt about the phenomenon, I’ll point you in the direction of your nearest “I Drink Your Milkshake” t-shirt wearer. Beyond becoming a catch-phrase for casual wear, this movie is one of the hardest movies that can actually be re-watched repeatedly. As opposed to, say, Kids. -CA

2. City of God (2002)

The Pitch: This Brazilian gem is a small, gritty, and surprisingly human look at one of the nastiest cities on Earth. Violence and dreams collide as young kids growing up in Rio de Janeiro’s most dangerous slum make choices with profound effects. It’s currently #16 on IMDB’s Top 250 Movie list which is damn impressive stuff for a film with no known stars. -RH

1. Trainspotting (1996)

The Pitch: Topping the list is the film that’s been voted the Best Scottish film of all time as well as in the Top Ten of British films. One of Danny Boyle’s first films, it takes a strange look at a group of heroine addicts. It rocked Cannes in 1996, and was picked up by Miramax for distribution in the states – giving us just a glimpse of Boyle’s talents and the talents of Scottish filmmaking. As brilliant as this film is, I’m with Ewan MacGregor in hoping that a sequel doesn’t get made. -CA

Editor’s Note: This list was lovingly compiled by Rob Hunter and Cole Abaius.

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