Welcome back to the weekly Top 10 list. Each week we come up with a topic, go create our separate lists, and then come together to create a top 10 consensus. This week with us all locked in our homes with no place to go, we decided to countdown the top 10 single location movies. These are movies where the majority of the film takes place in one location. Just a fun little topic we can all relate to right now, so I hope you enjoy it!
10. Ex Machina
Starting off the list is a more recent film about artificial intelligence in Ex Machina. Ex Machina is a story about a man who wins a contest to be the human version of a Turing test with a robot more human then imaginable. This film takes place entirely in this futuristic-looking luxury home in the middle of nowhere. It looks like a home that would never exist today and would freak me out to actually be in. The film takes turns you have to expect are coming but the buildup to them is so fascinating you accept it.
9. The Raid: Redemption
Many people consider this next film to be one of the greatest action films ever made, and I have to agree. This film is The Raid: Redemption. It is the story about a S.W.A.T. team that gets trapped in a tenement run by a mobster and his army of trained killers. It is essentially a fight to survive movie where just when you think you’re done, things get worse. The fight choreography is some of the best you will ever see that was later duplicated in the sequel, The Raid 2. They are remaking it in English, but it will be hard to top what this film originally did.
Coming in at number eight is our only western on the list in Tombstone. We can all relate to Wyatt Earp in this film, right? A man who just wants to retire peacefully in a small town and then it all gets ruined when his past catches up with him. Kurt Russell is such a treasure in this film as that western hero we all can’t help but love. There are so many recognizable faces here that contribute to a fun western that has become a classic over time.
In at number seven is Stephen King’s Misery. Stephen King is always great with his stories involving supernatural horror, but this one this different. What makes this story so unsettling is that this could actually happen. A fan becomes so obsessed with an author’s work that she locks him in her home and won’t let him leave until he finishes his story the way she wants it to end. It all takes place in her house and the events that transpire are very troubling. This is one of the better King adaptations and one that will be celebrated for a while.
6. Bad Times at the El Royale
Just missing out on the top five is the most recent film on this list in Bad Times at the El Royale. A movie where a group of strangers all come to a hotel on the border of Nevada and California where each of them has a different motivation for being there. This is one of the best films of the past five years that expertly mixes story and tension with each character being more fascinating than the last. It all culminates with an exchange that I could watch over and over again with Chris Hemsworth being the best he has ever been. See this movie if you missed it.
5. 12 Angry Men
Starting off the top five is the film that should be number one in 12 Angry Men. This film was as relevant back then as it is today. The idea of innocent until proven guilty is one that escapes us even today. We live in a society where an accusation can end your career with no basis behind it. In this film, 11 jurors are ready to convict a man until one of them slowly starts to convince them that the evidence doesn’t add up. Every juror should be forced to watch this movie and maybe the justice system would get better.
4. Reservoir Dogs
Coming in at number four is the debut of Quentin Tarantino with Reservoir Dogs. This is the story about a group of jewel thieves whose heist goes terribly wrong and they gather in a warehouse to figure out who set them up. To come out of the gate with a film that primarily takes place in one space is a bold choice but it payed off. The actors carry this sense of frustration and paranoia needed to make this mess seem real. Of course, it all goes badly, but the journey is a blast and wouldn’t be the last time Tarantino decides to set a film in one place.
At number three we have another film that is the debut of a well-known director with Clerks by Kevin Smith. Clerks is one of those success stories you hear about where a young filmmaker made a movie for little to no budget and it became an indie hit. It is just a film about two convenience store clerks who annoy customers and talk about movies. It is friends just hanging out and having a good time which is something we all have done. Kevin has taken this film and launched a very successful career for himself that he has used to tell stories he wants to see come to life.
2. Rear Window
Just missing out on the number one spot is Alfred Hitchcock’s classic Rear Window. The story about a man who is crippled and limited to his apartment and gets to looking out his window where he believes he sees a man who murders his wife. It is a great story about mystery and paranoia and how being confined in our homes, which we are now, can make us a little more on edge than we usually are. Hitchcock made many classic films, but there is a reason why this one is toward the top of that list.
Finally, in at our number one spot is Die Hard. Our staff on the website is absolutely obsessed with this film so any chance they get to fit this one into a category you can almost guarantee is will be at number one. You all have seen this film. Bruce Willis sneaks around the plaza trying to foil Hans Gruber’s plans. It is a terrific film with tons of great action that has become a classic already. It is unfortunate some of its sequels did not live up to this one’s legacy.
So, there you have it. Our picks for the Top 10 best films set in a single location. This was a tougher list to come up with but once we found our options, everything fell into place. What does your list look like? Let us know in the comments and we will see you next time with another list!