William Friedkin is a legendary American film director who has made some of the most iconic and influential movies in cinema history.

He is known for his intense, gritty, and uncompromising style of filmmaking, which often explores themes of violence, crime, and the human condition. Here are some of his best films:

The French Connection (1971): This crime thriller is considered a classic of the genre and won five Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director for Friedkin.

The film stars Gene Hackman as a tough New York City cop on the trail of a drug smuggling operation.

The Exorcist (1973): This horror classic is one of the most terrifying and controversial films ever made. It tells the story of a young girl possessed by a demonic entity and the attempts to exorcise the demon from her body.

The Exorcist is a masterclass in suspense and visual storytelling.

Sorcerer (1977): This action-adventure film follows a group of men who are hired to transport unstable explosives through the treacherous South American jungle.

Sorcerer is a tense and immersive film that showcases Friedkin’s technical mastery and attention to detail.

To Live and Die in L.A. (1985): This stylish and atmospheric crime thriller follows two detectives as they investigate a counterfeiting operation in Los Angeles.

To Live and Die in L.A. is a visually stunning film that features a memorable soundtrack by Wang Chung.

Bug (2006): This psychological horror film is a dark and unsettling exploration of obsession and paranoia. It stars Ashley Judd and Michael Shannon as two people who become increasingly convinced that they are being infested by bugs.

Bug is a disturbing and haunting film that showcases Friedkin’s skill at creating a claustrophobic and unsettling atmosphere.

Best William Friedkin Movies

Let’s take a look at William Friedkin’s top films.

1. Good Times (1967)

“Good Times” is a 1967 comedy-drama film directed by William Friedkin and starring Sonny and Cher. Here are three key features of the movie:

Music and performances: As a film featuring the popular musical duo of Sonny and Cher, “Good Times” includes many musical performances throughout.

   

The film’s soundtrack includes some of their hit songs, as well as covers of other popular tunes. The performances add to the film’s light and entertaining tone.

Humorous tone: “Good Times” has a lighthearted and comedic tone, with plenty of gags and silly moments throughout.

The film plays up the chemistry between Sonny and Cher, and includes several scenes where they banter and joke around. The humor may appeal to fans of classic comedy films from the 1960s.

Social commentary: Despite its light tone, “Good Times” includes some social commentary on the changing cultural landscape of the 1960s.

The film addresses issues such as generational divides, the influence of the media on popular culture, and the countercultural movement. The film’s humor and entertainment value may thus be balanced by some thought-provoking content.

Good Times [DVD]
  • Sonny Bono, Cher, George Sanders (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Nicholas Hyams (Writer)
  • English, Spanish, French (Subtitles)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • Audience Rating: Unrated (Not Rated)

2. The Birthday Party (1968)

The Birthday Party is a play written by Harold Pinter, which premiered in 1968. It tells the story of Stanley Webber, a reclusive and withdrawn man who lives in a boarding house run by Meg and Petey Boles.

Stanley’s quiet existence is disrupted when two mysterious strangers, Goldberg and McCann, arrive at the boarding house to celebrate his birthday.

As the party gets underway, Stanley becomes increasingly uncomfortable and suspicious of his guests, who begin to interrogate him about his past and identity.

The play is known for its dark humor, ambiguous plot, and themes of power, manipulation, and identity.

Despite receiving mixed reviews upon its initial release, The Birthday Party has since become one of Pinter’s most well-known and celebrated works.

It has been adapted into various film and stage productions, and is considered a classic of modern British drama.

The Birthday Party [Region 2]
  • Robert Shaw, Patrick Magee, Dandy Nichols (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Harold Pinter (Writer)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • Audience Rating: G (General Audience)

   

3. The Night They Raided Minsky’s (1968)

“The Night They Raided Minsky’s” is a 1968 comedy film directed by William Friedkin, based on a novel by Rowland Barber.

The film is set in 1925 and tells the story of a young Amish woman named Rachel Schpitendavel, who comes to New York City to become a dancer.

Rachel lands a job at the famous Minsky’s Burlesque theater, where she quickly becomes a star attraction. However, the theater is raided by the police and shut down, leading to a series of comedic misadventures as Rachel and the other performers try to keep the theater afloat.

The film stars Jason Robards, Britt Ekland, and Norman Wisdom, among others, and features several musical numbers and dance routines.

While the film was not a box office success upon its initial release, it has since gained a cult following and is regarded as a quirky and entertaining comedy.

Friedkin’s direction of “The Night They Raided Minsky’s” is notable for its fast-paced editing, colorful cinematography, and energetic performances from the cast.

The film’s depiction of the burlesque scene in the 1920s is also historically significant, as it offers a rare glimpse into the world of vaudeville and early American popular culture.

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The Night They Raided Minsky's [DVD]
  • Jason Robards, Britt Ekland, Norman Wisdom (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Arnold Schulman (Writer)
  • English, Spanish, French (Subtitles)
  • Audience Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)

4. The Boys in the Band (1970)

“The Boys in the Band” is a 1970 American drama film directed by William Friedkin, based on the groundbreaking 1968 off-Broadway play of the same name by Mart Crowley.

   

The film takes place over the course of a single evening and follows a group of gay men who gather for a birthday party in New York City.

As the night wears on and the drinks flow, tensions rise and long-buried resentments come to the surface.

The film explores themes of self-acceptance, discrimination, and the struggle for dignity and equality in a society that marginalizes and stigmatizes LGBTQ+ individuals.

“The Boys in the Band” was groundbreaking for its frank and honest portrayal of gay men, at a time when homosexuality was still largely taboo in mainstream media.

The film features an all-star cast of talented actors, including Kenneth Nelson, Frederick Combs, and Cliff Gorman, who deliver powerful performances that bring the characters and their struggles to life.

While the film has been criticized for perpetuating negative stereotypes of gay men, it remains an important cultural artifact and a powerful reminder of the struggles and triumphs of the LGBTQ+ community in the 20th century.

It’s a must-see for fans of LGBTQ+ cinema and those interested in exploring the history of the LGBTQ+ rights movement.

The Boys in the Band
  • Factory sealed DVD
  • Leonard Fray, Cliff Gorman, Keith Prentice (Actors)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

5. The French Connection (1971)

“The French Connection” is a crime thriller film released in 1971, directed by William Friedkin and starring Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, and Fernando Rey.

The film is loosely based on a true story and follows New York City detectives Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle and Buddy Russo as they investigate and attempt to dismantle a large-scale drug smuggling operation.

The film is known for its gritty realism, intense car chase scenes, and strong performances by the cast. Hackman’s portrayal of Doyle earned him an Academy Award for Best Actor, while the film itself won five Oscars, including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Screenplay.

“The French Connection” is considered a classic of the crime thriller genre, known for its attention to detail, tense pacing, and realistic portrayal of police work.

The film’s use of handheld cameras, naturalistic lighting, and on-location shooting techniques have influenced numerous filmmakers and helped establish a new style of gritty, realistic filmmaking in the 1970s.

Overall, “The French Connection” is a gripping and intense film that has stood the test of time and remains a classic of American cinema.

The French Connection (1971)
  • Gene Hackman, Fernando Rey, Roy Scheider (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director)
  • English, French, Spanish (Subtitles)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

6. The Exorcist (1973)

“The Exorcist” is a 1973 horror film directed by William Friedkin and based on the novel of the same name by William Peter Blatty.

The movie stars Linda Blair as a young girl named Regan who becomes possessed by a demonic entity, and Max von Sydow and Jason Miller as two priests who attempt to exorcise the demon from her body.

“The Exorcist” is widely considered one of the greatest horror movies of all time and is known for its intense and disturbing content.

The movie features groundbreaking special effects, a haunting soundtrack, and powerful performances from its cast. The film explores themes of faith, religion, and the battle between good and evil.

Upon its release, “The Exorcist” caused controversy and outrage due to its graphic and disturbing content. However, it also received critical acclaim and was a commercial success, grossing over $441 million worldwide.

The movie was nominated for ten Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and won two, for Best Sound and Best Adapted Screenplay.

“The Exorcist” remains a cultural landmark and continues to terrify and fascinate audiences to this day.

The Exorcist
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Linda Blair (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - William Peter Blatty (Writer) - William Peter Blatty (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

7. Sorcerer (1977)

“Sorcerer” is a 1977 thriller film directed by William Friedkin. Here are three key features of the movie:

Intense suspense: “Sorcerer” is a highly suspenseful film, with a tense and foreboding atmosphere that builds steadily throughout.

The film follows a group of four men who are hired to transport highly volatile explosives across treacherous terrain in South America. The constant threat of danger and potential disaster adds to the film’s intense tone.

Cinematic style: “Sorcerer” is known for its striking visual style and atmospheric cinematography.

The film features breathtaking shots of the South American landscape, as well as innovative camera work and editing. Friedkin uses a variety of techniques to create a sense of tension and unease, such as unusual camera angles and close-ups of characters’ faces.

Existential themes: Despite its action-oriented plot, “Sorcerer” also delves into existential themes such as fate, morality, and the human condition.

The characters are flawed and complex, and the film explores the ways in which they confront their own mortality and personal demons.

The film’s combination of thrilling action and philosophical depth may appeal to viewers who enjoy thought-provoking cinema.

Sorcerer (1977) (BD) [Blu-ray]
  • Factory sealed DVD
  • Roy Scheider, Bruno Cremer, Francisco Rabal (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

8. The Brink’s Job (1978)

The Brink’s Job is a 1978 crime-comedy film directed by William Friedkin and starring Peter Falk, Peter Boyle, Gena Rowlands, and Allen Garfield.

The film is based on the true story of the 1950 Boston Brink’s robbery, in which a group of thieves stole over $2 million in cash, checks, and securities from the Brink’s Building in Boston, Massachusetts.

The film follows a group of eccentric criminals who plan and execute the heist, including mastermind Tony Pino (played by Peter Falk) and safecracker Joe McGinnis (played by Peter Boyle).

Despite several setbacks and complications, the group successfully pulls off the heist, only to find themselves pursued by the police and the FBI.

The Brink’s Job was praised for its witty and engaging script, as well as its strong performances from the cast.

However, it was a box office disappointment upon its release, possibly due to its unconventional blending of genres. Over time, the film has gained a cult following and is now considered a classic heist film.

The Brink's Job
  • Peter Falk, Peter Boyle, Gena Rowlands (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Walon Green (Writer) - Ralph B. Serpe (Producer)
  • English (Publication Language)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

9. Cruising (1980)

“Cruising” is a 1980 crime thriller film directed by William Friedkin, based on a novel by Gerald Walker.

The film stars Al Pacino as Steve Burns, a young police detective who goes undercover in the New York City gay leather scene to catch a serial killer who is targeting gay men.

The film was highly controversial upon its release, with protests from the LGBT community and accusations of homophobia and negative stereotypes.

The film was also criticized for its depiction of BDSM and leather subculture, with some accusing the film of promoting violence and misogyny.

Despite the controversy, “Cruising” has been re-evaluated in recent years as a cult classic and an important document of New York City’s gay subculture in the late 1970s.

The film’s gritty, documentary-style cinematography and atmospheric score by Jack Nitzsche have been praised, as well as Pacino’s intense and nuanced performance as the conflicted detective.

Friedkin’s direction of “Cruising” is notable for its use of actual locations in New York City’s leather scene and its unflinching portrayal of violence and sexuality.

The film is a challenging and confrontational work that explores themes of identity, desire, and power, and it remains a provocative and divisive film to this day.

Cruising
  • Amazon Prime Video (Video on Demand)
  • Al Pacino, Paul Sorvino, Karen Allen (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - William Friedkin (Writer) - Burtt Harris (Producer)
  • English (Playback Language)
  • English (Subtitle)

10. Deal of the Century (1983)

“Deal of the Century” is a 1983 American comedy film directed by William Friedkin and starring Chevy Chase, Gregory Hines, and Sigourney Weaver.

The film tells the story of two arms dealers who compete against each other to sell a new weapon system to a South American dictator.

Chase plays the role of Eddie Muntz, a fast-talking, self-centered arms dealer who teams up with Hines’ character, Ray Kasten, a more principled and ethical dealer. The two form an unlikely partnership as they try to outmaneuver each other and make the big sale.

The film is a satire of the military-industrial complex and the arms trade, and it uses humor to comment on the dangers of unchecked capitalism and greed.

It also features a memorable performance by Weaver as a cynical, manipulative government agent who oversees the arms deal.

While “Deal of the Century” received mixed reviews upon its release, it has since gained a cult following among fans of Friedkin’s work and fans of 1980s comedies.

The film’s humor may not be for everyone, but its commentary on the military-industrial complex remains relevant to this day. It’s a must-see for fans of political satire and those interested in exploring the work of William Friedkin.

11. To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)

“To Live and Die in L.A.” is a crime thriller film released in 1985, directed by William Friedkin and starring William Petersen, Willem Dafoe, and John Pankow.

The film follows the story of two Secret Service agents, Richard Chance and John Vukovich, as they investigate and attempt to bring down a counterfeiting ring in Los Angeles.

The film is known for its gritty and realistic portrayal of the criminal underworld, as well as its intense car chase scenes and strong performances by the cast.

The film’s use of unconventional narrative structure and morally ambiguous characters has also been praised by critics and audiences alike.

“To Live and Die in L.A.” is considered a classic of the crime thriller genre, known for its stylish cinematography, pulsing soundtrack, and William Friedkin’s dynamic direction.

The film has influenced numerous other crime films and is often cited as one of the best examples of the genre.

Overall, “To Live and Die in L.A.” is a thrilling and intense film that showcases William Friedkin’s mastery of the crime thriller genre.

Its combination of stylish visuals, intense action, and morally ambiguous characters has earned it a place as a classic of American cinema.

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To Live and Die in L.A. (Special Edition)
  • To Live And Die in LA (Special Edition) - DVD Used Like New
  • William Petersen, Willem Dafoe, John Pankow (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Gerald Petievich (Writer)
  • English, Spanish, French (Subtitles)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

12. C.A.T. Squad (1986 TV Movie)

“C.A.T. Squad” is a made-for-TV movie that aired on NBC in 1986. The movie was directed by William Friedkin and stars Joe Cortese, Jack Youngblood, Steve James, and JoBeth Williams.

The plot of “C.A.T. Squad” follows a team of highly trained and skilled operatives who are part of an elite counterterrorism unit known as the “Crisis Action Team” or “C.A.T. Squad.”

When a terrorist group kidnaps the daughter of a wealthy businessman, the C.A.T. Squad is called in to rescue her and stop the terrorists before they can carry out their deadly plans.

The movie features a lot of action and suspense, as well as a number of explosive set pieces. It also explores themes of patriotism, heroism, and the sacrifices that individuals are willing to make in service of their country.

Although “C.A.T. Squad” was a made-for-TV movie and did not receive a wide theatrical release, it was generally well-received by audiences and critics alike.

The movie’s blend of action, drama, and suspense, as well as its talented cast and expert direction by William Friedkin, helped make it a memorable entry in the genre of ’80s action movies.

C.A.T. Squad: Stalking Danger [DVD]
  • Barry Corbin, Patricia Charbonneau, Joe Cortese (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director)
  • Audience Rating: PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)

13. Rampage (1987)

“Rampage” is a 1987 crime-drama film directed by William Friedkin. Here are three key features of the movie:

Intense psychological drama: “Rampage” is a highly psychological film that explores the mind of a mass murderer. The film follows a young man named Charlie Reece, who is accused of brutally murdering several people in a small town.

As his trial proceeds, his defense lawyer tries to build a case based on Reece’s traumatic childhood and mental state.

The film delves into complex issues such as the nature of violence and the responsibility of society to care for its mentally ill members.

Realistic courtroom drama: “Rampage” features a realistic and detailed portrayal of a high-stakes criminal trial.

The film includes scenes of legal strategy, cross-examinations, and emotional testimony, all of which contribute to the film’s tense and dramatic atmosphere.

Character-driven story: At its core, “Rampage” is a character-driven story that explores the motivations and actions of its complex protagonists.

The film’s well-drawn characters, including Reece, his lawyer, and the prosecuting attorney, are all portrayed with nuance and depth, adding to the film’s realism and emotional impact.

The film’s exploration of the human psyche and the consequences of violent behavior may appeal to viewers who enjoy thought-provoking dramas.

14. C.A.T. Squad: Python Wolf (1988 TV Movie)

C.A.T. Squad: Python Wolf is a made-for-television action movie that first aired in 1988.

The film follows a group of highly trained female agents known as the “C.A.T. Squad” (which stands for Counter Assault Tactical Squad) as they attempt to stop a terrorist organization from launching a deadly chemical attack on the United States.

The team is led by Commander Willow Black, played by Joe Cortese, and includes members played by TV and film veterans such as Wings Hauser, R. Lee Ermey, and Robert Davi.

Together, the team infiltrates the terrorist organization and battles to prevent the release of the deadly chemical.

C.A.T. Squad: Python Wolf was part of a trend of action-oriented TV movies that gained popularity in the 1980s, and it was one of the many attempts to create a successful female-led action series.

However, despite its promising premise and talented cast, the film received negative reviews from critics and failed to garner much of an audience.

15. The Guardian (1990)

“The Guardian” is a 1990 horror-thriller film directed by William Friedkin and written by Dan Greenburg. The film stars Jenny Seagrove and Dwier Brown as a couple who hire a nanny, played by Carey Lowell, to care for their newborn baby.

As the nanny begins to take over the household and the baby’s care, strange and terrifying events start to occur, leading the couple to suspect that the nanny may have sinister intentions. The film explores themes of motherhood, fear, and the supernatural.

Friedkin’s direction of “The Guardian” is notable for its use of atmospheric lighting and sound design to create a sense of foreboding and tension.

The film also features several inventive and unsettling sequences, including a scene where the nanny uses her own blood to paint a protective circle around the baby’s crib.

While “The Guardian” received mixed reviews upon its release, it has since gained a cult following among horror fans and is regarded as an underrated entry in Friedkin’s filmography.

The film’s blend of psychological terror and supernatural horror, as well as its striking visual style, make it a unique and memorable addition to the horror genre.

The Guardian
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

16. Blue Chips (1994)

“Blue Chips” is a 1994 American sports drama film directed by William Friedkin and starring Nick Nolte, Shaquille O’Neal, and Penny Hardaway.

The film tells the story of a college basketball coach who is under pressure to win and is tempted to break the rules by paying top recruits to play for his team.

Nolte gives a powerful performance as Coach Pete Bell, who struggles with the ethical implications of paying players and the pressure to win at all costs.

O’Neal and Hardaway play two of the top recruits who are being courted by Bell, and they deliver solid performances that capture the passion and intensity of college basketball.

“Blue Chips” explores themes of ethics, corruption, and the high-stakes world of college athletics. It sheds light on the darker side of the NCAA and the pressures faced by coaches and players to win at any cost.

The film’s realistic portrayal of college basketball and the behind-the-scenes maneuvering that goes on to secure top talent has made it a favorite among sports fans.

While “Blue Chips” may not be as well-known as some of Friedkin’s other films, it remains a powerful and thought-provoking work that raises important questions about the ethics of college sports.

It’s a must-see for fans of sports dramas and those interested in exploring the darker side of college athletics.

Blue Chips
  • Nick Nolte, Mary McDonnell, J.T. Walsh (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Ron Shelton (Writer)
  • English (Subtitle)
  • Audience Rating: PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)

17. Jade (1995)

“Jade” is a crime thriller film released in 1995, directed by William Friedkin and starring David Caruso, Linda Fiorentino, and Chazz Palminteri.

The film follows the story of San Francisco assistant district attorney David Corelli, who becomes embroiled in a high-profile murder investigation involving a wealthy businessman and a mysterious prostitute known as “Jade”.

The film is known for its stylish visuals, intense action sequences, and strong performances by the cast. However, it received mixed reviews upon its release and was not as well-received as Friedkin’s previous films, such as “The French Connection” and “To Live and Die in L.A.”

Despite its mixed reception, “Jade” has developed a cult following over the years and is still regarded by some as an underrated gem of the crime thriller genre.

The film’s intense action sequences, twisty plot, and complex characters have earned it a place as a notable entry in Friedkin’s filmography.

Overall, “Jade” is a stylish and thrilling crime film that showcases William Friedkin’s mastery of the genre, even if it was not as well-received as some of his earlier works.

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Jade
  • Film Noir Movies
  • Murder mystery Movies
  • Drama
  • Detective Movies
  • David Caruso, Linda Fiorentino, Chazz Palminteri (Actors)

18. 12 Angry Men (1997 TV Movie)

12 Angry Men” is a 1997 TV movie directed by William Friedkin and starring Jack Lemmon, George C. Scott, and James Gandolfini.

The film is a remake of the classic 1957 film of the same name, which was directed by Sidney Lumet and starred Henry Fonda.

The plot of “12 Angry Men” revolves around a jury of twelve men who are tasked with deciding the fate of a young man accused of murder.

As the deliberations continue, tensions rise and the men must confront their biases and preconceptions in order to arrive at a just verdict.

Like the original film, “12 Angry Men” is a powerful exploration of the American justice system and the human flaws that can affect it.

The movie features a talented ensemble cast, all of whom give nuanced and memorable performances. The film is also notable for its minimalist set design, which emphasizes the intense emotions and conflicts at play in the jury room.

While some critics have argued that the film does not surpass the original, “12 Angry Men” is still widely considered a compelling and thought-provoking drama.

The movie was nominated for three Emmy Awards, including Outstanding Made for Television Movie, and is often included on lists of the greatest TV movies of all time.

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19. Rules of Engagement (2000)

“Rules of Engagement” is a 2000 war-drama film directed by William Friedkin. Here are three key features of the movie:

Complex ethical issues: “Rules of Engagement” explores complex ethical issues related to military conflict and decision-making.

The film follows two U.S. Marine Corps officers who are brought to trial after ordering their troops to fire on a crowd of civilians during a peacekeeping mission in Yemen.

The film raises questions about the limits of military intervention, the role of international law in armed conflict, and the moral responsibility of military leaders.

Action-packed battle scenes: “Rules of Engagement” features intense battle scenes that immerse viewers in the chaos and violence of war.

The film’s realistic portrayal of combat adds to its authenticity and impact. The film includes scenes of military strategy, gunfire, and explosions, all of which contribute to its gripping and suspenseful atmosphere.

Stellar cast: “Rules of Engagement” features a strong ensemble cast, including Samuel L. Jackson, Tommy Lee Jones, and Guy Pearce.

The film’s well-drawn characters are portrayed with nuance and depth, adding to its emotional impact. The film’s exploration of complex ethical issues, combined with its action-packed battle scenes and top-notch cast, may appeal to viewers who enjoy thought-provoking war dramas.

Rules of Engagement
  • Tommy Lee Jones, Samuel L. Jackson, Guy Pearce (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director)
  • English (Subtitle)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

20. The Hunted (2003)

The Hunted is a 2003 action thriller film directed by William Friedkin and starring Tommy Lee Jones and Benicio Del Toro.

The film follows the story of L.T. Bonham (Tommy Lee Jones), a retired special forces operative who is called back into action to track down and capture a former protégé, Aaron Hallam (Benicio Del Toro), who has gone rogue and become a skilled and dangerous assassin.

As Bonham tracks Hallam through the Pacific Northwest wilderness, the two engage in a game of cat and mouse, with Bonham determined to capture Hallam alive and bring him to justice, and Hallam equally determined to evade his former mentor and continue his killing spree.

The Hunted was praised for its intense action sequences and strong performances by Jones and Del Toro, but received mixed reviews overall.

The film also features Connie Nielsen as an FBI agent who assists Bonham in his pursuit of Hallam. Despite its mixed reception, The Hunted has since gained a cult following and is considered a solid entry in the action-thriller genre.

The Hunted (Widescreen Edition) [DVD]
  • This Certified Refurbished product is tested and certified to look and work like new. The...
  • Tommy Lee Jones, Benicio Del Toro, Connie Nielsen (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Art Monterastelli (Writer)
  • English (Subtitle)
  • Audience Rating: R (Restricted)

21. Bug (2006)

“Bug” is a 2006 psychological horror film directed by William Friedkin, based on a play by Tracy Letts.

The film stars Ashley Judd and Michael Shannon as a lonely woman and a disturbed man who become increasingly paranoid and delusional as they believe that they are being stalked by bugs.

As the two characters spiral into madness, they become more and more isolated from the outside world and develop a twisted and dangerous relationship.

The film explores themes of mental illness, isolation, and the breakdown of communication.

Friedkin’s direction of “Bug” is notable for its claustrophobic and intense atmosphere, as well as its powerful performances by Judd and Shannon.

The film’s use of sound and lighting to create a sense of unease and disorientation has been praised by critics, as has its unflinching depiction of mental illness and the dangers of unchecked paranoia.

While “Bug” was not a commercial success, it has since gained a cult following and is regarded as a challenging and disturbing work of psychological horror.

The film’s exploration of the limits of human sanity and the nature of reality make it a powerful and thought-provoking addition to the horror genre.

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22. Killer Joe (2011)

“Killer Joe” is a 2011 American black comedy crime film directed by William Friedkin and starring Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch, and Juno Temple.

The film tells the story of a dysfunctional family in Texas who hire a hitman named Killer Joe to kill their estranged mother in order to collect her life insurance policy.

McConaughey gives a standout performance as Killer Joe, a charismatic and ruthless killer who becomes entangled with the family in unexpected ways.

Hirsch and Temple also deliver strong performances as the conflicted members of the family who become embroiled in Joe’s schemes.

“Killer Joe” is a dark and twisted film that explores themes of violence, family dysfunction, and the corrupting influence of power.

It features intense and graphic scenes of violence and sexuality that may not be suitable for all viewers, but the film’s black humor and strong performances make it a compelling and memorable work of cinema.

While “Killer Joe” is not for the faint of heart, it is a must-see for fans of dark comedies and crime films.

Friedkin’s direction and McConaughey’s performance make it a standout in both their careers, and the film’s themes and imagery will linger in viewers’ minds long after the credits have rolled.

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Killer Joe
  • Factory sealed DVD
  • Matthew McConaughey, Emile Hirsch, Juno Temple (Actors)
  • William Friedkin (Director) - Nicolas Chartier (Producer)
  • English, Spanish (Subtitles)
  • English (Publication Language)

3 Characteristics of William Friedkin Films

Here are three common characteristics found in the films of William Friedkin:

Gritty Realism – Friedkin’s films are known for their realistic portrayal of crime, violence, and the criminal underworld.

He often uses handheld cameras, naturalistic lighting, and on-location shooting techniques to create a sense of authenticity and immersion for the audience.

Intense Action – Many of Friedkin’s films are notable for their intense and thrilling action sequences, such as the famous car chase scene in “The French Connection” or the climactic shootout in “To Live and Die in L.A.”

Friedkin’s use of dynamic camera angles, rapid editing, and tense pacing help to create a sense of excitement and urgency in these scenes.

Complex Characters – Friedkin’s films often feature morally ambiguous and complex characters who are not easily defined as heroes or villains.

This ambiguity creates a sense of tension and unpredictability in the plot, as the audience is forced to question the motivations and actions of the characters.

Friedkin is known for eliciting strong performances from his actors, which helps to bring these complex characters to life on the screen.

3 Reasons Why You Should Watch William Friedkin Films

Innovative and Groundbreaking Filmmaking: William Friedkin is a director who is known for pushing boundaries and experimenting with different techniques in his films.

He has been praised for his innovative use of camera angles, editing, and sound design to create suspense and tension. Watching Friedkin’s films can give you an appreciation for the art of filmmaking and how it can be used to create impactful stories.

Exploration of Important Themes: Friedkin’s films often deal with weighty themes such as justice, morality, and the human psyche.

By watching his movies, you can gain a deeper understanding of these concepts and how they play out in society. Friedkin’s films can provoke thought and discussion, making them not only entertaining but also intellectually stimulating.

Talented Cast and Performances: Many of Friedkin’s films feature impressive performances from talented actors, including Gene Hackman, Al Pacino, and Ellen Burstyn, among others.

Watching these actors bring their characters to life can be a powerful experience, and can give you a greater appreciation for the craft of acting.

Additionally, Friedkin is known for his ability to draw out authentic and emotionally resonant performances from his cast, making his films all the more engaging and impactful.

Best William Friedkin Films – Wrapping Up

William Friedkin is a highly respected director known for his unique and often controversial films. Here are some of his best works:

The French Connection (1971): This crime thriller is widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time, and it won five Academy Awards including Best Picture and Best Director.

The film follows two detectives as they pursue a drug kingpin in New York City, and features one of the most famous car chases in movie history.

The Exorcist (1973): This horror classic is one of the most influential and terrifying films ever made.

The story of a possessed young girl and the priests who try to save her, the film remains a landmark of the genre and has influenced countless other horror films since its release.

Sorcerer (1977): This thriller follows a group of men as they attempt to transport highly volatile explosives across treacherous terrain in South America. With its intense suspense and striking visual style, the film has become a cult classic.

To Live and Die in L.A. (1985): This crime thriller features a morally ambiguous plot and an unforgettable car chase through the streets of Los Angeles. The film has been praised for its innovative visual style and unconventional storytelling.

Bug (2006): This psychological thriller follows a woman who becomes increasingly paranoid and delusional after meeting a stranger who claims to be a victim of government experimentation.

The film’s claustrophobic atmosphere and intense performances have earned it a cult following.

These are just a few of William Friedkin’s many notable films. With his uncompromising vision and talent for creating memorable and provocative stories, Friedkin has left an indelible mark on the history of cinema.