Gene Siskel

Note: Gene Siskel passed away on February 20, 1999 at the age of 53. Although, over the course of the years, my tastes and opinions diverged quite a bit from those of Mr. Siskel, I still owe him a great deal of gratitude. He and Roger Ebert were perhaps the most significant influences on my early interest in film, and I doubt I would be quite as fanatical about movies if it weren't for them. In my early days, I used the lists below extensively in making viewing choices. Gene Siskel will be missed.


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Babe: Pig in the City (George Miller)
02. The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick)
03. Pleasantville (Gary Ross)
04. Saving Private Ryan (Steven Spielberg)
05. The Truman Show (Peter Weir)
06. Antz (Eric Darnell/Tim Johnson)
07. Simon Birch (Mark Steven Johnson)
08. There's Something About Mary (Bobby Farrelly/Peter Farrelly)
09. Waking Ned Devine (Kirk Jones)
10. Madadayo (Akira Kurosawa)
11. Beloved (Jonathan Demme)

Note: All years 1969-1998 were drawn directly from the year-end issues of the Chicago Tribune in which they originally appeared. There seems to exist the occasional slight difference between some of these lists and the lists that were broadcast on the Siskel & Ebert television program. One of these days I will add notes to the affected lists.

Previous Years: - - - - - - - - - 1969 -
1970 1971 1972 1973 1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 -
1980 1981 1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 80's
1990 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 90's


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Z (Costa-Gravas)
02. Midnight Cowboy (John Schlesinger)
03. Alice's Restaurant (Arthur Penn)
04. Simon of the Desert (Luis Bunuel)
05. The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter (Robert Ellis Miller)
06. Oh! What a Lovely War (Richard Attenborough)
07. The Wild Bunch (Sam Peckinpah)
08. if.... (Lindsay Anderson)
09. Pretty Poison (Noel Black)
10. Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice (Paul Mazursky)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. My Night at Maud's (Eric Rohmer)
02. M*A*S*H (Robert Altman)
03. Women in Love (Ken Russell)
04. Five Easy Pieces (Bob Rafelson)
05. The Passion of Anna (Ingmar Bergman)
06. Adalen 31 (Bo Widerberg)
07. Salesman (Albert & David Maysles)
08. Woodstock (Michael Wadleigh)
09. Trilogy ()
10. The Wild Child (Francois Truffaut)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Claire's Knee (Eric Rohmer)
02. A New Leaf (Elaine May)
03. McCabe and Mrs. Miller (Robert Altman)
04. Little Big Man (Arthur Penn)
05. The Last Picture Show (Peter Bogdanovich)
06. Sunday, Bloody Sunday (John Schlesinger)
07. Bed and Board (Francois Truffaut)
08. Dirty Harry (Don Siegel)
09. Husbands (John Cassavetes)
10. Taking Off (Milos Forman)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. The Godfather (Francis Ford Coppola)
02. The Sorrow and the Pity (Marcel Ophuls)
03. Le Boucher (Claude Chabrol)
04. Cabaret (Bob Fosse)
05. Two English Girls (Francois Truffaut)
06. A Clockwork Orange (Stanley Kubrick)
07. Chloe in the Afternoon (Eric Rohmer)
08. Frenzy (Alfred Hitchcock)
09. Sounder (Martin Ritt)
10. Ulzana's Raid (Robert Aldrich)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. The Emigrants and The New Land (Jan Troell)
02. Last Tango in Paris (Bernardo Bertolucci)
03. The Exorcist (William Friedkin)
04. Cries and Whispers (Ingmar Bergman)
05. The Day of the Jackal (Fred Zinnemann)
06. The Last of Sheila (Herbert Ross)
07. The Day of the Dolphin (Mike Nicols)
08. American Graffiti (George Lucas)
09. Sisters (Brian De Palma)
10. The Long Goodbye (Robert Altman)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Day for Night (Francois Truffaut)
02. The Last Detail (Hal Ashby)
03. Amarcord (Federico Fellini)
04. The Conversation (Francis Ford Coppola)
05. Mean Streets (Martin Scorsese)
06. Scenes from a Marriage (Ingmar Bergman)
07. Lacombe, Lucien (Louis Malle)
08. Harry and Tonto (Paul Mazursky)
09. The Mother and the Whore (Jean Eustache)
10. Wedding in Blood (Claude Chabrol)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Nashville (Robert Altman)
02. The Passenger (Michelangelo Antonioni)
03. Love and Death (Woody Allen)
04. Dog Day Afternoon (Sidney Lumet)
05. Barry Lyndon (Stanley Kubrick)
06. And Now My Love (Claude Lelouch)
07. Dodes'ka-den (Akira Kurosawa)
08. The Homecoming (Peter Hall)
09. Antonia: Portrait of a Women (Judy Collins/Jill Godmilow)
10. Hustle (Robert Aldrich)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. All the President's Men (Alan J. Pakula)
02. Network (Sidney Lumet)
03. Brothel No. 8 (Kei Kumai)
04. Small Change (Francois Truffaut)
05. Stay Hungry (Bob Rafelson)
06. Cousin, Cousine (Jean-Charles Tacchella)
07. Taxi Driver (Martin Scorsese)
08. Buffalo Bill and the Indians, or Sitting Bull's History Lesson (Robert Altman)
09. The Seven-Per-Cent Solution (Herbert Ross)
10. The Man Who Would Be King (John Huston)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Annie Hall (Woody Allen)
02. The Late Show (Robert Benton)
03. In the Realm of the Senses (Nagisa Oshima)
04. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (Steven Spielberg)
05. Saturday Night Fever (John Badham)
06. Harlan County, U.S.A. (Barbara Kopple)
07. Star Wars (George Lucas)
08. Oh, God! (Carl Reiner)
09. Pumping Iron (George Butler/Robert Fiore)
10. Rolling Thunder (John Flynn)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Straight Time (Ulu Grosbard)
02. Pretty Baby (Louis Malle)
03. Days of Heaven (Terrence Malick)
04. Blue Collar (Paul Schrader)
05. Autumn Sonata (Ingmar Bergman)
06. The Buddy Holly Story (Steve Rash)
07. Coming Home (Hal Ashby)
08. Halloween (John Carpenter)
09. Magic (Richard Attenborough)
10. Stoszek (Werner Herzog)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Hair (Milos Forman)
02. Kramer vs. Kramer (Robert Benton)
03. The Deer Hunter (Michael Cimino)
04. Breaking Away (Peter Yates)
05. Manhattan (Woody Allen)
06. The Marriage of Maria Braun (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
07. Nosferatu, the Vampyre (Werner Herzog)
08. The Onion Field (Harold Becker)
09. Time After Time (Nicholas Meyer)
10. The China Syndrome (James Bridges)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Raging Bull (Martin Scorsese)
02. Ordinary People (Robert Redford)
03. Coal Miner's Daughter (Michael Apted)
04. The Tree of Wooden Clogs (Ermanno Olmi)
05. Kagemusha (Akira Kurosawa)
06. Being There (Hal Ashby)
07. The Black Stallion (Carroll Ballard)
08. The Blues Brothers (John Landis)
09. The Great Santini (Lewis John Carlino)
10. The Stunt Man (Richard Rush)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Ragtime (Milos Forman)
02. My Dinner With Andre (Louis Malle)
03. Raiders of the Lost Ark (Steven Spielberg)
04. Mon Oncle d'Amerique (Alain Resnais)
05. Gates of Heaven (Errol Morris)
06. Bye Bye Brazil (Carlos Diegues)
07. Prince of the City (Sidney Lumet)
08. Melvin and Howard (Jonathan Demme)
09. Body Heat (Lawrence Kasdan)
10. The French Lieutenant's Woman (Karel Reisz)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Moonlighting (Jerzy Skolimowski)
02. Tootsie (Sydney Pollack)
03. E.T. (Steven Spielberg)
04. Diva (Jean-Jacques Beineix)
05. Mephisto (Istvan Szabo)
06. Lola (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
07. Personal Best (Robert Towne)
08. Das Boot (Wolfgang Petersen)
09. Three Brothers (Francesco Rosi)
10. An Officer and a Gentleman (Taylor Hackford)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. The Right Stuff (Philip Kaufman)
02. Terms of Endearment (James L. Brooks)
03. Betrayal (David Jones)
04. Fanny and Alexander (Ingmar Bergman)
05. Star 80 (Bob Fosse)
06. The Year of Living Dangerously (Peter Weir)
07. Silkwood (Mike Nicols)
08. Pauline at the Beach (Eric Rohmer)
09. Risky Business (Paul Brickman)
10. The Big Chill (Lawrence Kasdan)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Once Upon a Time in America (Sergio Leone)
02. Amadeus (Milos Forman)
03. The Cotton Club (Francis Ford Coppola)
04. Entre Nous (Diane Kurys)
05. Purple Rain (Albert Magnoli)
06. The Killing Fields (Roland Jaffe)
07. Secret Honor (Robert Altman)
08. A Passge to India (David Lean)
09. Micki & Maude (Blake Edwards)
10. The Natural (Barry Levinson)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Ran (Akira Kurosawa)
02. The Color Purple (Steven Spielberg)
03. Streetwise (Martin Bell)
04. Prizzi's Honor (John Huston)
05. The Official Story (Luis Puenzo)
06. Mishima (Paul Schrader)
07. The Falcon and the Snowman (John Schlesinger)
08. Back to the Future (Robert Zemeckis)
09. The Purple Rose of Cairo (Woody Allen)
10. Wetherby (David Hare)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Shoah (Claude Lanzmann)
02. Hannah and Her Sisters (Woody Allen)
03. Vagabond (Agnes Varda)
04. A Room With a View (James Ivory)
05. Mona Lisa (Neil Jordan)
06. Peggy Sue Got Married (Francis Ford Coppola)
07. Blue Velvet (David Lynch)
08. Children of a Lesser God (Randa Haines)
09. Round Midnight (Bertrand Tavernier)
10. The Fly (David Cronenberg)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. The Last Emperor (Bernardo Bertolucci)
02. Full Metal Jacket (Stanley Kubrick)
03. House of Games (David Mamet)
04. Jean de Florette and Manon of the Spring (Claude Berri)
05. Broadcast News (James L. Brooks)
06. Radio Days (Woody Allen)
07. River's Edge (Tim Hunter)
08. Prick Up Your Ears (Stephen Frears)
09. Roxanne (Fred Schepisi)
10. The Big Easy (Jim McBride)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. The Last Temptation of Christ (Martin Scorsese)
02. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (Robert Zemeckis)
03. Bull Durham (Ron Shelton)
04. Little Dorritt (Christine Edzard)
05. Midnight Run (Martin Brest)
06. The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris)
07. Hotel Terminus: The Life and Times of Klaus Barbie (Marcel Ophuls)
08. The Unbearable Lightness of Being (Philip Kaufman)
09. Working Girl (Mike Nicols)
10. Funny Farm (George Roy Hill)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Do the Right Thing (Spike Lee)
02. Roger & Me (Michael Moore)
03. Drugstore Cowboy (Gus Van Sant)
04. Enemies: A Love Story (Paul Mazursky)
05. Born on the Fourth of July (Oliver Stone)
06. The Little Mermaid (John Musker/Ron Clements)
07. Crimes and Misdemeanors (Woody Allen)
08. The Fabulous Baker Boys (Steve Kloves)
09. Say Anything (Cameron Crowe)
10. The War of the Roses (Danny DeVito)

Best Films of the 1980s

(Chicago Tribune)
01. Raging Bull (Martin Scorsese)
02. Shoah (Claude Lanzmann)
03. The Right Stuff (Philip Kaufman)
04. My Dinner With Andre (Louis Malle)
05. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (Robert Zemeckis)
06. Do the Right Thing (Spike Lee)
07. Once Upon a Time in America (Sergio Leone)
08. Moonlighting (Jerzy Skolimowski)
09. Sid and Nancy (Alex Cox)
10. Kagemusha (Akira Kurosawa)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Goodfellas (Martin Scorsese)
02. After Dark, My Sweet (James Foley)
03. Avalon (Barry Levinson)
04. The Plot Against Harry (Michael Roemer)
05. Too Beautiful for You (Bertrand Blier)
06. Die Hard 2 (Renny Harlin)
07. Dances With Wolves (Kevin Costner)
08. Reversal of Fortune (Barbet Schroeder)
09. The Freshman (Andrew Bergman)
10. The Godfather Part III (Francis Ford Coppola)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse (Fax Bahr/George Hickenlooper)
02. An Angel at My Table (Jane Campion)
03. Boyz N the Hood (John Singleton)
04. La Belle Noiseuse (Jacques Rivette)
05. Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale/Kirk Wise)
06. Grand Canyon (Lawrence Kasdan)
07. JFK (Oliver Stone)
08. Ju Dou (Zhang Yimou)
09. Daddy Nostalgia (Bertrand Tavernier)
10. Once Around (Lasse Hallstrom)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. One False Move (Carl Franklin)
02. The Player (Robert Altman)
03. Howards End (James Ivory)
04. The Crying Game (Neil Jordan)
05. Malcolm X (Spike Lee)
06. The Hairdresser's Husband (Patrice Leconte)
07. Damage (Louis Malle)
08. Wayne's World (Penelope Spheeris)
09. Mississippi Masala (Mira Nair)
10. Under Seige (Andrew Davis)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Schindler's List (Steven Spielberg)
02. Short Cuts (Robert Altman)
03. The Piano (Jane Campion)
04. Farewell My Concubine (Chen Kaige)
05. Menace II Society (The Hughes Brothers)
06. The Fugitive (Andrew Davis)
07. The Age of Innocence (Martin Scorsese)
08. The Joy Luck Club (Wayne Wang)
09. King of the Hill (Steven Soderbergh)
10. Map of the Human Heart (Vincent Ward)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Hoop Dreams (Steve James)
02. Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino)
03. Ed Wood (Tim Burton)
04. 32 Short Films About Glenn Gould (Francois Girard)
05. Quiz Show (Robert Redford)
06. Forrest Gump (Robert Zemeckis)
07. Vanya on 42nd Street (Louis Malle)
08. The Shawshank Redemption (Frank Darabont)
09. Red Rock West (John Dahl)
10. Little Women (Gillian Armstrong)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Crumb (Terry Zwigoff)
02. Toy Story (John Lasseter)
03. Nixon (Oliver Stone)
04. Babe (Chris Noonan)
05. Dead Man Walking (Tim Robbins)
06. Leaving Las Vegas (Mike Figgis)
07. The American President (Rob Reiner)
08. Exotica (Atom Egoyan)
09. Apollo 13 (Ron Howard)
10. Les Miserables (Claude Lelouch)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. Fargo (Joel Coen)
02. Secrets & Lies (Mike Leigh)
03. Breaking the Waves (Lars von Trier)
04. The English Patient (Anthony Mingella)
05. Lone Star (John Sayles)
06. Looking for Richard (Al Pacino)
07. Paradise Lost (Joe Berlinger & Bruce Sinofsky)
08. Welcome to the Dollhouse (Todd Solondz)
09. Kingpin (Peter and Bobby Farrelly)
10. Bound (The Wachowski Brothers)


(Chicago Tribune)
01. The Ice Storm (Ang Lee)
02. L.A. Confidential (Curtis Hanson)
03. Wag the Dog (Barry Levinson)
04. In the Company of Men (Neil LaBute)
05. The End of Violence (Wim Wenders)
06. The Full Monty (Peter Cattaneo)
07. The Sweet Hereafter (Atom Egoyan)
08. Good Will Hunting (Gus Van Sant)
09. Mrs Brown (John Madden)
10. As Good As It Gets (James L. Brooks)