Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Bloody Inspiration: The 21 Films That Have Influenced My Writing

Every artists and writer is influenced by their background, environment and what they are exposed to. I’m sure that there are hundreds of things that I have seen, heard and read that have shaped the way I write. I grew up in a movie culture, so there are probably dozens of movies that guide the way I envision character and create dialogue. I’m sticking with 21 for this list because they match the tone and genre that I enjoy the most and because I can’t spend days on this blog post. In any event, if you enjoy these 21 films, I think you will enjoy my writing.
  1. The American (2010): a minimalistic spy thriller; one of the few times the movie was better than the book.
  2. Basic Instinct (1992): the most well known example of the erotic thriller
  3. Blade Runner (1982): an amazing blend of noir and sci-fi that defined cyberpunk 
  4. Brick (2005): a well done noir detective story set in high school 
  5. Chinatown (1974): defined noir drama for an entire generation
  6. Enter the Dragon (1973): its never considered a espionage film due to the excessive ass kicking, but that’s what it is at it’s core
  7. Fight Club (1999): we don’t talk about fight club… 
  8. Heat (1995): a very stylish example of the heist film
  9. Inception (2010): a beautifully structured combination of sci-fi and espionage
  10. La Femme Nikita (1990): a classic European espionage film that spawned a good TV show, a bad TV show and an awful American remake 
  11. Layer Cake (2004): a British crime drama with a good plot and a good cast
  12. Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998): strong characters and stronger dialogue 
  13. Memento (2000): the crime drama that redefined the use of the flashback 
  14. Miami Vice (2006): a spy thriller pretending to be a remake of an 80’s cop movie
  15. Reservoir Dogs (1992): I wish all the dialogue in my writing was this good
  16. Ronin (1998): a crime drama that manages to be both subtle and over the top
  17. Seven (1995): easily one of the best film endings of the past 20 years
  18. Spy Game (2001): an excellent example of the career of a master spy
  19. The Talented Mr. Ripley (1999): nice film adaptation of a classic book
  20. The Usual Suspects (1995): a great cast a great script and the best villain in years
  21. Way of the Gun (2000): a systematically brutal with a twisted pessimism and questionable motives all around
What are your favorite crime dramas or spy thrillers? I’m always looking for good material. Let me know what I should add to my Netflix queue.
Have fun.


  1. Check out Last Man Standing, No Country For Old Men and Saint John of Las Vegas.

  2. Thank you sir. They are now on the list. :)