Five Favorite Films

Five Favorite Films with John Turturro

Fading Gigolo filmmaker and actor talks foreign and classic cinema

by | April 18, 2014 | Comments

Hear John Turturro discuss his Five Favorite Films and his new movie, Fading Gigolo, on the Rotten Tomatoes podcast (starting at 56:00).


Between The Big Lebowski, Rounders, Raging Bull and Do the Right Thing, actor John Turturro has made an impressive number of appearances on our Five Favorite Films lists. Now, he shares five faves of his own.

Given Turturro’s body of work as a writer and director, it may not surprise you that his favorites lean toward classic and foreign cinema — or that he had a hard time paring down the list to only five.


The Godfather (Francis Ford Coppola, 1972; 100% Tomatometer)



I guess definitely I would say The Godfather is one of my favorite films. It’s beautifully written and beautifully shot and performed… it’s very entertaining, but it also has a lot of layers to it. It has a lot of fantastic actors in the film and in the script. It’s one of those films that works on many levels, and I think that the movies that stay with you, [they] work on many levels. I have so many movies that I’ve loved, it’s very hard to make it down to five — it would be hard to even make 20 — but I’m going to go for five, so I’m going to put The Godfather on that.

Le Notti di Cabiria (Nights of Cabiria) (Federico Fellini, 1957; 97% Tomatometer)



Then I would also put Nights of CabiriaLe Notti di Cabiria — by Fellini, which I love. It’s a movie about a woman who’s a prostitute, but it’s a fantastic movie with Giulietta Masina and I think it won, like, Best Foreign Film or something in 1957. It’s a film I look at again and again. I’m a big Fellini fan.


And is that one you watched while you were preparing for Fading Gigolo?

Well, there’s so many movies about that world, and so many [actors] have played roles — from Jane Fonda to Barbra Streisand to Barbara Stanwyck to Joan Crawford, Anna Magnani — it goes on and on and on all the way up to Midnight Cowboy. I’m not gonna put Midnight Cowboy as one of my five. But it’s close… That movie really influenced me wanting to be an actor actually because I saw Dustin Hoffman and I was like, ‘Wow, we could be related.’ I couldn’t see it when it came out because it was rated X… but if you see it again, it holds up really, really well. Maybe I’ll put that on my five. I don’t know.

Casablanca (Michael Curtiz, 1942; 97% Tomatometer)



I would definitely have to put Casablanca on there because I think it’s such a great, entertaining film. It’s so witty and funny and it influenced so many people, including Woody Allen… I remember watching it when I was a kid and thinking like, ‘Wow, this is just perfect,’ so I would put that in there.

On the Waterfront (Elia Kazan, 1954; 100% Tomatometer)



And then I would put On the Waterfront in there too… I remember I broke my leg when I was in eighth grade and I actually taped it on my audio cassette. I taped the entire movie, so I know a lot of the movie by heart. So, these are movies that just have had big influences on you at different times of your life.

La Grande Illusion (Grand Illusion) (Jean Renoir, 1937; 97% Tomatometer)



Number five is a toss-up between The Seven Samurai and Grande Illusion. I still don’t know what to say. I’ll just say… Grande Illusion, which I think is a perfect film. And it doesn’t follow any rules because it’s very episodic. I’m a huge Jean Renoir fan, and I’m a huge Kurosawa fan too, and those guys made movies that — that’s as good as it gets. Jean Renoir’s films have such a tremendous intelligence and humanity, and there’s all this great depth and there’s this great joie de vivre — there’s this great joy in the film. It’s almost like commedia dell’arte, but then it exposes something really deep down. And so those are just great pieces of work, and there are so many other films that I love too, so it’s hard.


In Fading Gigolo, the fifth film written and directed by Turturro, he plays a New York City florist who takes up the world’s oldest profession in order to earn some extra cash for himself and his friend, Murray (Woody Allen). Sofia Vergara, Sharon Stone, Vanessa Paradis, Liev Schreiber and Bob Balaban co-star.

Fading Gigolo is currently in theaters.


Tag Cloud

President dc El Rey spider-man cars Tarantino doctor who Peacock ABC Family NYCC YouTube Red Lionsgate Mary Tyler Moore HBO Film award winner boxoffice Holidays movies romance Interview IFC Films green book Winter TV Quiz Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt 45 24 frames sitcom Mary poppins Countdown Black Mirror Disney Mudbound Freeform Universal Creative Arts Emmys south america History Adult Swim USA Network Comedy Central BBC Bravo diversity Super Bowl Musicals Tumblr politics FXX crossover science fiction biography elevated horror Ghostbusters Epix HBO Max video Captain marvel SXSW festivals Pride Month cults Awards sports Arrowverse television Netflix TCA animated DirecTV book Fall TV Set visit ITV Spike Shondaland period drama teaser YA Cartoon Network Emmys NBC Superheroes Valentine's Day Trailer Amazon Prime CMT Comic Book mockumentary American Society of Cinematographers crime Summer mutant Teen Showtime game show spinoff MSNBC Paramount Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Cannes Calendar cinemax Kids & Family Marvel zero dark thirty Video Games BBC America Drama WarnerMedia Writers Guild of America Family DGA based on movie TCM Box Office streaming Women's History Month Chernobyl MCU docudrama GIFs Crackle Warner Bros. Nat Geo AMC Disney Channel 2019 Infographic Tomatazos A&E Winners DC streaming service tv talk National Geographic Reality series WGN Schedule psycho foreign Columbia Pictures Hulu cops Esquire justice league vampires Grammys The Witch aliens Sundance New York Comic Con miniseries cooking medical drama Country disaster First Reviews zombies richard e. Grant Lifetime 20th Century Fox Comedy social media Sci-Fi anime space MTV Syfy First Look casting game of thrones war Podcast VH1 Ovation police drama Cosplay Vudu Pop Certified Fresh Western Sundance Now LGBTQ witnail dragons cats singing competition Anna Paquin TBS RT History APB jamie lee curtis supernatural YouTube Premium Rom-Com IFC DC Universe San Diego Comic-Con ESPN Best and Worst DC Comics Starz facebook Britbox Trivia composers Pirates Ellie Kemper hispanic TIFF 007 sequel Biopics spanish language PaleyFest Rocky crime drama TV Land unscripted Food Network children's TV Acorn TV Spring TV Action technology Binge Guide true crime TLC CW Seed thriller Polls and Games Rock VICE serial killer Nickelodeon LGBT Spectrum Originals TV Paramount Network ghosts Apple Elton John Opinion Oscars talk show CBS All Access adaptation toy story Reality Competition FX BET Comics on TV binge Character Guide Musical E! Photos natural history ratings ABC Year in Review revenge Rocketman OWN GLAAD dceu zombie nature Star Trek adventure spy thriller transformers spain Film Festival historical drama TCA 2017 Dark Horse Comics kids latino psychological thriller crime thriller dramedy quibi PBS Sony Pictures political drama Masterpiece Song of Ice and Fire golden globes robots Election Heroines TruTV Sneak Peek what to watch Pet Sematary The CW 71st Emmy Awards Music E3 Fantasy Red Carpet Watching Series Shudder Trophy Talk Mary Poppins Returns Pixar Fox News CBS Marathons Awards Tour SDCC discovery finale Television Academy Brie Larson 2018 Horror Star Wars Nominations Emmy Nominations strong female leads Thanksgiving The Arrangement Logo See It Skip It CNN X-Men theme song USA travel Toys Mystery Extras Premiere Dates FOX Mindy Kaling comic GoT Lucasfilm Superheroe Christmas anthology Stephen King comiccon Disney streaming service blaxploitation Amazon Prime Video TNT Amazon Animation 2017 SundanceTV 2015 2016 21st Century Fox stand-up comedy harry potter RT21 Martial Arts hist Walt Disney Pictures