Joe Rubin

Film archivist and distributor

Voted for

Cruising1980William Friedkin
The Spirit of the Beehive1973Víctor Erice
Cisco Pike1971Bill L. Norton
Beyond the Valley of the Dolls1970Russ Meyer
FEDORA1978Billy Wilder
The Seventh Victim1943Mark Robson
Les Bonnes femmes1960Claude Chabrol
Survival in New York1989Rosa von Praunheim
Man with a Movie Camera1929Dziga Vertov



1980 Federal Republic of Germany, USA

As cliched as the term might be, Cruising is a masterclass in great filmmaking. A rare work where every shot, every cut, every moment truly means something.

The Spirit of the Beehive

1973 Spain

On top of being incredible to look at and truly heartbreaking, I can think of no film which better conveys the power of cinema itself.

Cisco Pike

1971 USA

Probably not actually one of my “top ten” films, Cisco Pike is nevertheless the low key height of New American Cinema and a personal favorite for years.


1972 Italy

Fulci, at the height of his political phase, turned in this perfect reflection of Italian society at a cultural breaking point in giallo dressing. Also a career best performance from Florinda Bolkan.

Beyond the Valley of the Dolls

1970 USA

Russ Meyer was one of the finest technical filmmakers of the 20th century and no work better exemplifies this than Dolls.


1978 Federal Republic of Germany, France

Wilder’s reflective look at his place in post-classical Hollywood offers a rare example of a master in top form acknowledging their obsolescence.

The Seventh Victim

1943 USA

Whether it’s more so a byproduct of the talent of Robson or Lewton, the final shot alone elevates this to “masterpiece” territory.

Les Bonnes femmes

1960 France, Italy

To me, Chabrol and Varda are the true voices of the French New Wave. While I’m not nominating a Varda film, I’m using Femmes to highlight who I feel are French cinema’s defining voices.

Survival in New York


I feel as though I need to propose the best film I’ve seen this year, and this is it. Von Praunheim has yet to really get his due but the more attention his work gets, the better. As a radical documentarian, he’s up there with Herzog, Wiseman, and Morris and as an experimental filmmaker (which this is not), his mastery of technique is never less than thrilling.

Man with a Movie Camera

1929 Ukrainian SSR, USSR

Something of an old standby of film schools, Movie Camera is nevertheless one of the greatest and most inspiring experimental films ever produced.

Further remarks

Making top ten lists is an impossible endeavor. I watch hundreds of films each year and even making a top ten for any given year is difficult. This is merely a selection of films which have resonated over the years.