Megan Mitchell


Voted for

M1931Fritz Lang
Bronco Bullfrog1969Barney Platts-Mills
Pumping Iron1976George Butler
Harold and Maude1971Hal Ashby
Valley Girl1983Martha Coolidge
Crime Wave1985John Paizs
Johnny Suede1991Tom Dicillo
Ghost World2001Terry Zwigoff
Stella2008Sylvie Verheyde



1931 Germany

A somewhat predictable vote for a ‘greatest films list’, but M is my favourite comfort film as it truly does show that cinema can be perfect.

Bronco Bullfrog

1969 United Kingdom

Before Bronco Bullfrog I wasn’t sure that British films could be good, and certainly not this good. As a young teen Bronco Bullfrog was a week-day selection of happenstance more than choice, harking back to a time not long ago when free/cheap cinema tickets for young people and eclectic indie cinema programming had one-off screenings of gems like Bronco Bullfrog that made a day bunking off school go quicker. That context certainly enhanced the expereince of this stylish, considered British drama that offers an endearing peek at late 1960s teen life.

Pumping Iron

1976 USA

As lean and chiselled as its subject, there are few documentaries as perfect as Pumping Iron. Uninterested in condoning or vilifying their subjects Bulter and Flore transport the audience into the glistening world of 70s bodybuilding, a paradoxical space of toxic masculinity and gleeful man-on-man comradery.

Harold and Maude

1971 USA

The experience of seeing Harold & Maude for the first time, with no idea of what it was about, as a 16-year-old alone in the cinema on Valentine's Day changed how I understood commitment, love and self-expression.


1981 Federal Republic of Germany

The thrill of watching a low-quality version of Christiane F. of Youtube still stays with me many years later, the sense of intimately observing chaotic youthfulness so beautifully but honestly portrayed by such a young cast.

Valley Girl

1983 USA

Valley Girl represents not only a turning point in the pillar of Americanised world culture that is the teen romantic comedy but also in my own life, twenty-something years after its initial release, coming to me via a music channel on a small television late one Friday night. Coolidge expertly crafted this undeniable feminist masterpiece with all the care of a parent passing on a family heirloom to a child, the teachings in Valley Girl about young women's autonomy, self-expression and freedoms are as urgent today as they were in the early 80s. A film of cinematic perfection with an unrivalled soundtrack of 80s post-punk and alt-indie.

Crime Wave

1985 Canada

Crime Wave is a cult masterpiece unlike anything else. Brimming with creeping humour, joyful primary-colours set design and a knowing nod to the frustration of creating good cinema, Crime Wave outshines those it draws comparisons to, including all of John Waters's filmography which is not an easy feat. As writer, director and star John Paizs shows what greatness really means in each of these categories, not to mention he’s probably the most handsome director ever to grace the screen.

Johnny Suede

1991 USA, Switzerland, France

A DVD gift from my very first boyfriend, this Brad Pitt fever dream transports you to another realm. Johnny Suede captures American indie oddballness to a tee, balancing unbeatable style (Pitt’s hairstyle in this surely must be the best in cinema at least!) with gentle emotions of uncertainty, desperation and wanting.

Ghost World

2001 United Kingdom, USA, Germany

Ghost World is one of the most perfect films that deals in teen exploration, clumsiness and selfishness whilst having sympathy and understanding for the characters feeling their way through their lives. If great films are meant to make you feel seen and understood, then this is one of my greats. Plus I am in love with Steve Buscemi.



Stella is a quiet, delicate and heartbreaking film. It has the greatest portrayal of young love, held within one scene, that has ever been captured on film.

Further remarks

In crafting my selection I was struck by how easy it was to select ten films once I realised that the greatest films to me are the films that stuck with me, that have impacted me in ways I don’t have to think on, films that live with me every day. The films on my list live there because they came to me at times in my life when I needed them, for comfort, to feel seen, to have fun. These films came to me in cinemas, online and in physical media. They were gifts, discoveries and accidence. These films all have something of me in them and, since first viewing each, I have something of them in me - or when it comes to Ghost World and Christiane F. I literally have them tattoed on my body. My only rationale for my selection is that these are films I not only love but have come to be old friends of mine.