Five Favorite Films

Five Favorite Films with Ray Winstone

The enduring British tough guy and star of this week's The Sweeney on his all-time favorite films.

by | March 1, 2013 | Comments

Chances are that when audiences think “tough Cockney geezer” they picture Ray Winstone, the veteran British actor whose enduring gallery of rogues has practically given him trademark on the type. From his early roles as young punks and ne’er do-wells in movies like Quadrophenia, Scum and Ladies and Gentlemen, the Fabulous Stains through his unforgettable performances in Nil by Mouth and Sexy Beast, Winstone cornered the market in British hard men — and directors like Martin Scorsese (The Departed) and Steven Spielberg (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull) took note.

Winstone has just wrapped filming Darren Aronofsky’s Noah opposite Russell Crowe, and this week he’s in theaters as the lead in British hit The Sweeney — an adaptation of the iconic 1970s police show on which, coincidentally, the star landed one of his earliest roles. We had a chance to chat with Winstone recently about his all-time favorite films.

Raging Bull (Martin Scorsese, 1980; 98% Tomatometer)

Well, not necessarily in this order. You’ve got Raging Bull, for the reason that it’s a masterpiece of movie-making. I love it because, when you cut the boxing out, it’s about people. It’s beautifully shot. The slow-motion stuff, the music, the characters, the acting, the direction. It’s classic to me because I’ve been a boxer, and it emotionally touches me. The heart just got to me. I was sitting there with my mate watching that, and he’s a boxer and a champion boxer, and we were both crying at the end of the movie — [laughs] which sounds ridiculous, but it got to us, you know?

Once Upon a Time in America (Sergio Leone, 1984; 87% Tomatometer)

Another movie is Once Upon a Time In America, which is a bit of genius film-making, I think. That’s a film I can watch all night long. And I think it is four hours long, or something like that. It’s just a wonderful film to watch.

Zulu (Cy Endfield, 1964; 93% Tomatometer)

Then you could cut away from films like that and say a film like Zulu, with Stanley Baker and Michael Caine. It’s just a film that, no matter where you pick it up — like the first two — you have to keep watching. I think I watch that film three times a year.

The Vikings (Richard Fleishcer, 1958; 71% Tomatometer)

Another film would be The Vikings, with Kirk Douglas and Tony Curtis — with a Bronx accent, I guess, as a viking. But it’s a stirring film, you know, and one of the great films of the time.

The Searchers (John Ford, 1956; 100% Tomatometer)

I could go on and on. Like The Searchers, with John Wayne. It’s a wonderful film. Brilliantly shot, you know. And Wayne’s playing a bigot in it. A man who’s got a hatred about him, but by the end of it he changes. It’s such a great performance, hero playing a man like that. But you know, I got a million films; I could probably give you another five or 10 that would be totally different. You know a film that changed my mind about everything? I was in New York years ago, walking along on my own, and I saw a film called The Tin Drum. I went in and it started and I thought, “F–k, it’s a German film,” and they’ve got these subtitles and I thought, “I can’t be bothered with this.” But I sat there, and within 10 minutes I forgot about reading it and I just sat there watching this film. What a film. And it kind of changed my mind about film-making.

The Sweeney opens theatrically in select locations this week.

Tag Cloud

Podcast supernatural Cartoon Network RT History Western The CW Trailer LGBTQ crossover serial killer composers Country dramedy Lionsgate biography Reality Sony Pictures E! A&E comiccon TV The Arrangement Action 2017 IFC Set visit Music cults BET cats Horror robots GoT Lifetime technology PBS Holidays Mystery travel Sneak Peek Trivia period drama El Rey Best and Worst Comedy CMT Tomatazos TV Land Extras Sci-Fi Biopics TCM ITV Interview adventure Tumblr MSNBC Countdown American Society of Cinematographers USA Watching Series sitcom spy thriller Fantasy Ellie Kemper Universal Oscars VICE Marvel TNT Pop AMC Rock SundanceTV Awards Kids & Family Mindy Kaling zombie BBC historical drama Nickelodeon Disney Photos Shondaland Drama Disney Channel Comic Book OWN Super Bowl CW Seed HBO talk show BBC America NBC based on movie ratings Emmys Reality Competition Spring TV Acorn TV PaleyFest science fiction FOX TLC crime thriller aliens SDCC YA Showtime Calendar Superheroe TruTV cinemax APB Red Carpet TCA Food Network 24 frames Britbox Mary Tyler Moore social media Sundance NYCC dc thriller political drama FXX ABC Family Thanksgiving Freeform Ghostbusters hist USA Network binge Martial Arts Valentine's Day 21st Century Fox Netflix vampires History TBS Superheroes sports Writers Guild of America GLAAD diversity Rom-Com Crackle harry potter TIFF Logo National Geographic 20th Century Fox MTV GIFs CBS Lucasfilm Infographic Paramount Network IFC Films Cosplay what to watch Fox News Syfy boxoffice Toys Masterpiece First Look 45 ESPN Christmas discovery Schedule Bravo WGN Election Fall TV docudrama finale Musicals Creative Arts Emmys Dark Horse Comics Summer YouTube Red crime drama cops Marathons DC Universe Animation zombies See It Skip It 2015 CBS All Access medical drama justice league Starz Year in Review SXSW Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Certified Fresh cooking FX Hulu Polls and Games Opinion Star Trek ABC Character Guide Comedy Central E3 Winners Premiere Dates Grammys romance DC streaming service Musical Warner Bros. Pirates 2016 crime CNN festivals golden globes Nominations Spike Esquire 007 DC Comics Sundance Now Nat Geo dceu Video Games singing competition police drama Winter TV President Star Wars Rocky Teen Paramount politics DirecTV Pixar Amazon psycho X-Men VH1 transformers war Adult Swim unscripted TCA 2017 Box Office