Top 50 most watched films on BFI Player so far in 2018

As we reach the middle of the year, here’s what subscribers have been watching online on BFI Player. These 50 are all available to watch with a free 14-day trial

50. Kelly + Victor (2012)

Director Kieran Evans

In modern Liverpool, a couple meet and begin a transgressive, sexually charged affair set against a background of crime and encroaching danger.

49. Love and Death on Long Island (1997)

Director Richard Kwietniowski

Love and Death on Long Island (1997)

John Hurt stars in Richard Kwietniowski’s comedy of fame and obsession about an older man (Hurt) who becomes infatuated with a young Hollywood actor (Jason Priestley), and proceeds to track him down.

48. Gomorrah (2008)

Director Matteo Garrone

Gomorrah (2008)

Matteo Garrone’s unnervingly authentic Naples crime drama won the Grand Prix at Cannes before inspiring a hit TV series.

47. The Draughtsman’s Contract (1982)

Director Peter Greenaway

The Draughtsman's Contract (1982)

Peter Greenaway became a director of international status with this witty, stylised, erotic country house murder mystery.

46. The Red Shoes (1948)

Directors Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger

Moira Shearer’s ballerina is torn between love and her career in Powell and Pressburger’s hugely influential melodrama.

45. Metropolis (1927)

Director Fritz Lang

Metropolis (1927)

Fritz Lang’s expressionist dystopia is one of the first science fiction feature films, and is arguably the most influential.

44. The Lickerish Quartet (1970)

Director Radley Metzger

The Lickerish Quartet (1970)

A decadent couple and their son invite a circus stunt-woman back to their castle for an evening of erotic games, role-play and revelations.

43. Nightwatching (2007)

Director Peter Greenaway

Nightwatching (2007)

Martin Freeman’s hearty turn as Rembrandt anchors one of Peter Greenaway’s most accessible films, charting the creation of the Dutch master’s key work, ‘The Night Watch’.

42. The Shout (1978)

Director Jerzy Skolimowski

The Shout (1978)

Cannes’ Grand Jury Prize was awarded to this unnerving drama about a man who claims to be able to kill people with a ‘terror shout’ learned from an Aboriginal shaman.

41. Great Expectations (1946)

Director David Lean

Great Expectations (1946)

The first of David Lean’s two Dickens adaptations is one of the finest British literary interpretations and one of the most acclaimed of all British films.

40. The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1969)

Director Dario Argento

The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (1969)

Dario Argento’s hugely influential thriller, about a murder witness who becomes amateur detective, added sex and style to the murder-mystery and kick-started Italy’s ‘giallo’ genre.

40. Computer Chess (2013)

Director Andrew Bujalski

Computer Chess (2013)

Andrew Bujalski’s hilarious and surreal comedy about the birth of computer culture, set in an early 1980s conference where primitive programmers take on chess masters.

39. Bicycle Thieves (1948)

Director Vittorio De Sica

Bicycle Thieves (1948)

Vittorio De Sica’s story of a father and son searching for a stolen bicycle on the streets of Rome is a classic of post-war Italian cinema.

37. Eisenstein in Guanajuato (2015)

Director Peter Greenaway

Eisenstein in Guanajuato (2015)

One of Britain’s most inventive filmmakers, Peter Greenaway, tackles the story of arguably the most influential filmmaker in cinema history, Sergei Eisenstein.

36. Red Road (2006)

Director Andrea Arnold

Red Road (2006)

Andrea Arnold’s highly acclaimed film, winner of top prizes at Cannes and the BFI London Film Festival, is a haunting drama about a woman confronting past demons.

35. Fear Eats the Soul (1974)

Director Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Fear Eats the Soul (1974)

Fassbinder’s international breakthrough, this unconventional love story combines lucid social analysis with devastating emotional power.

34. The Reflecting Skin (1990)

Director Philip Ridley

The Reflecting Skin (1990)

Stunningly photographed drama about a young American boy caught up in the nightmare of a sinister rural community.

33. Night Moves (2013)

Director Kelly Reichardt

Night Moves (2013)

Jesse Eisenberg and Dakota Fanning star in a taut political thriller about radical environmentalists planning to commit an act of eco-terrorism.

32. M (1931)

Director Fritz Lang

M (1931)

Peter Lorre is unforgettable as the compulsive child murderer on the run from both police and criminals alike, in Fritz Lang’s seminal crime film.

31. Fitzcarraldo (1981)

Director Werner Herzog

Fitzcarraldo (1981)

One of Werner Herzog’s most acclaimed and audacious films, Fitzcarraldo tells the incredible story of Brian Sweeney Fitzgerald, an opera-loving fortune hunter who dreams of bringing opera to the heart of the Peruvian jungle.

30. Rome Open City (1945)

Director Roberto Rossellini

Rome, Open City (1945)

Roberto Rossellini’s landmark of Italian neorealism, often cited as one of the greatest films ever made.

29. Welcome to Leith (2015)

Director Michael Beach Nichols

Welcome to Leith (2015)

What would you do if a Nazi moved next door? This chilling documentary follows the white supremacist takeover of a tiny Dakotan town.

28. Tokyo Story (1953)

Director Yasujiro Ozu

Tokyo Story (1953)

A constant fixture in critics’ polls, Yasujiro Ozu’s most enduring masterpiece is a beautifully nuanced exploration of filial duty, expectation and regret.

27. Red Desert (1964)

Director Michelangelo Antonioni

Red Desert (1964)

Antonioni’s mid-career masterpiece stars Monica Vitti as an emotionally anguished young woman embarking on a tentative affair with a businessman (Richard Harris).

26. The Passion of Joan of Arc (1927)

Director Carl Th. Dreyer

The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928)

An incontestable masterpiece of silent cinema, Carl Dreyer’s deeply moving biopic features one of the most powerful performances ever captured on film.

25. The Ipcress File (1965)

Director Sidney J. Furie

The Ipcress File (1965)

The coolest spy of all – Michael Caine’s Harry Palmer – makes his brilliant big screen debut in this landmark British spy thriller.

24. Audition (1999)

Director Takashi Miike

Audition (1999)

Takashi Miike burst to international prominence with this deeply disturbing tale of a deadly young woman who turns the tables on her middle-aged suitor.

23. Theorem (1968)

Director Pier Paolo Pasolini

Theorem (1968)

Pasolini’s classic about a handsome, enigmatic stranger (Terence Stamp) who arrives at a bourgeois household and seduces an entire family.

22. Room 237 (2012)

Director Rodney Ascher

Room 237 (2012)

Rodney Ascher’s enigmatic essay film weaves together the contrasting theories of five different narrators who believe Stanley Kubrick deliberately buried hidden messages in his 1980 adaptation of Stephen King’s novel.

21. The Third Man (1949)

Director Carol Reed

The Third Man (1949)

Carol Reed’s timeless classic, one of the greatest British films, lavishly marries a perfect script, an unforgettable theme tune and the star power of Orson Welles.

20. Mademoiselle Chambon (2009)

Director Stéphane Brizé

Mademoiselle Chambon (2009)

When a happily married man decides to volunteer at his son’s school, he begins to form a romantic bond with a teacher in this intimate French drama.

19. King of New York (1990)

Director Abel Ferrara

King of New York (1990)

Christopher Walken is the dogged drug-lord determined to keep his empire together, in Abel Ferrarra’s brutally gritty crime thriller.

18. Wake in Fright (1971)

Director Ted Kotcheff

Wake in Fright (1971)

In this classic, broiling Australian thriller, an exasperated schoolteacher finds himself stranded in the dusty outback town of Bundanyabba, where the growing isolation and unhinged locals begin to eat away at his sanity.

17. Mystery Road (2003)

Director Ivan Sen

Mystery Road (2013)

An Aboriginal cop returns to his hometown to solve the brutal murder teenage girl, uncovering a web of corruption and a growing body count, in Ivan Sen’s acclaimed Australian riff on the western genre.

16. Spanking the Monkey (1994)

Director David O. Russell

Spanking the Monkey (1994)

David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook) made his feature debut in 1994 with this biting black comedy, which caused a stir with its incestuous subplot and portrayal of adolescent restlessness.

15. The American Friend (1977)

Director Wim Wenders

The American Friend (1977)

Acclaimed director Wim Wenders, with the help of Dennis Hopper, transforms Patricia Highsmith’s novel ‘Ripley’s Game’ into a gripping European noir.

14. Fantastic Planet (1973)

Director René Laloux

Fantastic Planet (1973)

René Laloux and Roland Topor’s surreal, psychedelic sci-fi animation imagines a world in which humanoid creatures are kept as pets by a race of giants.

13. Bande à part (1964)

Director Jean-Luc Godard

Bande à part (1964)

Jean-Luc Godard’s playful tribute to the Hollywood pulp crime movies of the 1940s, executed with typically Gallic cool.

12. Breathless (1960)

Director Jean-Luc Godard

À bout de souffle (1960)

More Godard. This time his extraordinary debut feature, an insouciant and iconoclastic crime film that paved the way for the French New Wave.

11. Dogtooth (2009)

Director Yorgos Lanthimos

Dogtooth (2009)

Yorgos Lanthimos’ scary, witty tale of a dysfunctional Greek family is original, ingenious and sadly relevant as a study of parent-child relationships

10. The Beast (1975)

Director Walerian Borowczyk

The Beast (1975)

An outrageous classic of erotic cinema, Walerian Borowczyk’s playful and subversive fantasy finds a horny heiress courting the ravenous desires of a wild beast.

9. Frozen River (2008)

Director Courtney Hunt

Frozen River (2008)

Nominated for two Oscars (best actress – Melissa Leo – and best original screenplay), Frozen River is a riveting thriller that raises questions about the borders we construct, between countries, communities and each other.

8. Belle de jour (1967)

Director Luis Buñuel

Belle de Jour (1967)

Luis Buñuel’s provocative classic about a bored and neglected housewife (Catherine Deneuve) risks her reputation to take up a daring new hobby.

7. Vivre sa vie (1962)

Director Jean-Luc Godard

Vivre sa vie (1962)

Anna Karina shines in Godard’s critically acclaimed account of a Parisian woman’s slow descent into prostitution.

6. Le Mépris (1963)

Director Jean-Luc Godard

Le Mépris (1963)

Godard conducts an autopsy of love and the creative process, as a boorish film producer dismantles a seemingly strong marriage.

5. Me without You (2001)

Director Sandra Goldbacher

Me Without You (2001)

Anna Friel and Michelle Williams star as two troubled girls whose tumultuous friendship takes many twists and turns.

4. Half Nelson (2006)

Director Ryan Fleck

Half Nelson (2006)

Ryan Gosling received his first Oscar nomination for his performance as an inspirational inner city high school teacher, in this moving story of redemption in an unforgiving world.

3. Immoral Tales (1974)

Director Walerian Borowczyk

Immoral Tales (1974)

Walerian Borowczyk presents four stories of sexual taboos throughout the ages, in his highly controversial classic of 1970s erotic cinema.

2. The Housemaid (2010)

Director Im Sang-soo

The Housemaid (2010)

An enigmatic housemaid and her wealthy, totalitarian employer begin an affair that will have disastrous consequences for them both.

1. Paris, Texas (1984)

Director Wim Wenders

Paris, Texas (1984)

Our most played film of the year so far is Wim Wenders’ moving tale of loss and redemption. The late, great Harry Dean Stanton had his finest role as the near-mute Travis, on a journey across America to reunite his family.

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