Desert Island Films: Film Guide Dublin

Desert Island Films

Dean from Film Guide Dublin has kindly submitted his Desert Island Films. Read on for his choices and reasons, and be sure to check out his site.

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Desert Island Films is about choosing 8 films you would take if you were going to be stranded on a desert island and explaining your choices. They don’t necessarily have to be your favourites, just 8 films, no more or no less! You are also permitted to take one book and one novelty item which must be inanimate and of no use in escaping the island or allowing communication from outside.

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Desert Island Films: Dean from Film Guide Dublin

The Puffy Chair (2005)


Being stranded alone on a desert Island would probably leave you desperate for human contact. I’ve yet to watch a film that pulls you into its time and place quite like The Puffy Chair does. Everything about this film is in the moment; it is wonderfully ad-libbed and has a rawness that’s hard to match. It places you in the room as the quiet guy who doesn’t say very much, but observes everything.

Taxi Driver (1976)

taxi driver

Meh, maybe people aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Who needs people anyway? Travis Bickle has a pretty cynical view on the world. Being stuck on a Desert Island would probably make you think likewise at times, so why not bask in the thought with Scorsese’s psychological masterpiece.

 The Good, The Bad and The Ugly (1966)

the good the bad and the ugly

I could be on this Island for a long time, so I better include an epic. Sergio Leone’s 1966 spaghetti western starring Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef and Eli Wallach is a thrilling tale about the adventures of three men pitted against each other in a race to claim hidden treasure. Set amongst the backdrop of the civil war, this film features some of the best directing you’re ever likely to see.

 Rear Window (1954)

rear window

This film is surely one of the greatest pieces of pure cinema ever made; it’s a how-to guide on visual story telling. Hitchcock pans his camera around and gives his audience the kind of information that would -in the hands of some directors- be delivered in the form of pages upon pages of tedious dialogue. An essential piece of filmmaking.

 Hoop Dreams (1994)

hoop dreams

Documentarian Steve James tells the story of two inner city Chicago boys who dream of becoming professional basketball players. Stunning, heartfelt and inspirational, this documentary is a must see. There are lessons to be learnt here.

Double Indemnity (1944)

double indemnity

Billy Wilder, need I say more ? Well maybe just this : “shut up, baby.”

Moon (2009)


If Sci-Fi is not normally your thing, give this film a try – you might surprise yourself. It addresses isolation and the fragility of the human mind and spirit. A bit like this Island, actually.

The Matador (2005)

the matador

This list is full of pretty serious movies; I better include a comedy or I might crack up. This film by Richard Shepard includes Pierce Brosnan (fresh from his stint as James Bond, no less) delivering the line: “I’m as serious as an erection problem.” Does it get funnier than that ?


Double Indemnity by James M. Cain. Yeah, I know I’m bringing the movie and the book, but reading this terrific novel with that 1940’s – style speech running through your head is irresistible.

Luxury Item:

My guitar. As they say here in Ireland – let the music keep your spirits high.

So there you have it, my desert island films. I’d like to thank Tyson for the opportunity to share my picks on his fine website. Guys like him make this movie blogging thing worthwhile.


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Thanks again to Dean for taking the time to join the prestigious Head In A Vice ”castaway” list. If you would like to submit your choices and add your name to THIS LIST, please drop me an email to –

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Leave a comment


  1. Good picks, especially with Taxi Driver and Hoop Dreams. Also, that’s a great new logo Tyson.


  2. Man i really have to watch that Puffy Chair movie It keeps showing up on peoples lists of films to watch.


  3. Cool list, Dean! Clint Eastwood, Rear Window, film noir…did you steal MY list and give it to Tyson?


  4. theipc

     /  April 14, 2013

    Good work guys and nice list, Dean!! Great post!!


  5. Great picks! I really need to catch up on more Billy Wilder films. Oh, The Matador is quite a hoot, enjoyed that one even though I’m not generally fond of Brosnan.


  6. Really dig your choices, Dean. Rear Window’s one of my fave Hitchcocks (pure cinema like you say). And it’s always great to see Moon on any list.


  7. Thanks again for doing this Dean, much appreciated my friend. Great list 🙂


  8. Great picks Dean, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly is one of my favs as well.


  9. garryarmstrong

     /  April 15, 2013

    Anyone who likes James M. Cain is aces in my book. Very nice choices, Dean!


  10. A great selection of movies here! Taxi Driver and The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly – very nice 😀


  11. Love seeing Hoop Dreams on here. It’s definitely one of my all-time favorites!


  12. Popcorn Nights

     /  April 18, 2013

    A couple here I haven’t seen – great to see a few unusual choices! I’d forgotten about Hoop Dreams, it’s absolutely brilliant!


  1. Desert Island Films | filmguidedublin

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