Ten Great “Movies With A P”! Players! Parasites! Phantoms And “Hell Upside Down” Too!

Welcome To My Movie Countdown!

Kris Kristofferson opens his arms to all of you, fellow movie lovers, especially those who like classic cult movies!

Kris and I have ten great films to share, as we continue the “Movies A-Z” list of classic cult cinema!

Cult “P” Movies!

As you can see from this picture, Steve McQueen can’t wait to bust out and see my list as well – because he made this list…and of course, many great films did not – so leave a comment at the end so I can include them in my next go-round!

Here are ten great films that begin with the letter “P” – beginning in 1968 with a science fiction masterpiece!

10 – “Planet Of The Apes” – 1968

What a classic!

Charlton Heston and two fellow Astronauts crash land on another planet – a “planet of the apes!”

Here is the trailer:

This is one of the greatest science fiction films of all time – and of course, the single greatest “twist” ending of all time – written by “Twilight Zone’s” Rod Serling!

Charlton Heston had a “perfect storm” of sci-fi movies – 3 classic ones over 5 years, including the movie that inspired Green Day to name their band! See that story here:


Next up, a surprise “Best Picture” winner from 2019!

9 – “Parasite”!

A film that seemed to come out of nowhere to sweep the 2019 award season: a story of a poor family who slowly integrates themselves into a wealthy family’s life – with shocking results.

This is a very provocative, thought provoking movie – check out the trailer:

Some of the best filmmaking in the world is coming from Asia right now, and this South Korean film shattered expectations by making history!

“Parasite” was the first film in a foreign language to win the Academy Award for “Best Picture”, and also the first movie to win the awards for both “Best Picture” and “Best International Film” (formerly Best Foreign Language Film)!

In addition, Director Bong Joon-ho also won the Directing Oscar and Screenplay as well – what a big night!

We head back to 1971 now, the year that Clint Eastwood had three classic films, including his directorial debut:

8 – “Play Misty For Me” – 1971

Clint stars as a successful DJ who attracts a fan who becomes a crazed stalker – here is the trailer:

Jessica Walter is great as the deranged fan, and the bartender is played by legendary Director Don Siegel – who directed Clint TWICE that year – in “Dirty Harry” and “Play Misty For Me!”

See more about this trifecta of great cinema here:


Since it’s an election year, why not look back at the highly fictionalized story of Bill Clinton’s presidential run in 1992!

7 – “Primary Colors”

This 1998 film was based on a novel by “Anonymous”, and was an “imagination” of what it was like to be part of Bill Clinton’s first presidential campaign…check out the trailer:

John Travolta was was perfect as Jack Stanton, a southern Governor running an unlikely campaign for the Presidency – and his “issues” with women…

Emma Thompson is terrific as his long-suffering wife, who knows of his infidelities but is always looking at the “big picture”…if you want to see more about this GREAT film, directed by the legendary Mike Nichols, you can click on my story here:


In 1972, “disaster” films were the rage, and none better that this great film with the classic tagline:


6 – “The Poseidon Adventure” – 1972

What a great film – an ocean liner capsized on New Year’s eve, and the only way out is to climb UP to the bottom of the ship! Here is the trailer:

Gene Hackman leads an all-star cast “up” to the bottom of the ship after it capsizes…what a great disaster film!

“The Poseidon Adventure” had an all-star cast – and won an Oscar for best song! It also had some very juicy “behind the scenes” drama! See more by clicking on my story here:


Next up, a legendary Director skewered Hollywood in one of the best black comedies about the business ever!

5 – “The Player”

How about this line from the 1991 film directed by Robert Altman:

“I was just thinking what an interesting concept it is to eliminate the writer from the artistic process. If we could just get rid of these actors and directors, maybe we’ve got something here.”

With those words, one of the most entertainingly caustic books ABOUT movies became one of the best films about the business of Hollywood – check out the trailer:

Tim Robbins heads an all-star cast, and I mean ALL-STAR: did you know there are more Oscar winners assembled here than in any film in history?

Just one of many cool things about “The Player” – read more here:


One of Hollywood’s greatest action stars had a smash hit in 1973 with the true story of one of the world’s greatest prison escapes!

4 – “Papillon” – 1973

Steve McQueen and Dustin Hoffman star in the film, based on the best-selling autobiography by the French convict Henri Charrière.

The film’s title is French for “Butterfly,” referring to Charrière’s tattoo and nickname. Here is the trailer:

This film is amazing, as it documents what these prisoners endured as they tried to escape…a great film and McQueen has never been better. He was one of Hollywood’s biggest stars at the time – click here to see more of his great movies!


Director Sam Peckinpah released one of his greatest movies in 1973 – with two big Hollywood stars as well:

3 – “Pat Garrett & Billy The Kid” – 1973

Kris Kristofferson and James Coburn starred in this great film about the last days of the wild west – check out the trailer:

At the time, Peckinpah had a reputation as a wild man, so the cast took a picture with him in a hospital bed – and sent it to the movie studio!

Here are more wild stories about this legendary Director, including the time he dumped hot soup into the lap of a friend of mine:


Now, one of my favorite films of all time – courtesy of Director Brian DePalma and Singer/Songwriter Paul Williams!

2- “Phantom Of The Paradise” – 1974

DePalma’s updated “Phantom Of The Opera” wasn’t a hit at the time, but is now considered a masterpiece – check out the trailer:

A new blu-ray has a ton of great extras, including an in-depth conversation between Paul Williams, who starred in the film and wrote all the music, and Director Gillermo del Toro…you can see more here:


My final film on the “P” list has become one of the most beloved fables of all time:

1 – “The Princess Bride”

Rob Reiner directs this timeless classic – a story of love, honor, and having fun storming the castle!

Check out the trailer for this 1987 gem:

There is so much to love about this film: it’s hilariously funny, but also a terrific romance, and did you know that the Oscar-winning screenwriter of “Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid” first wrote this as a novel?

It’s one of the many fascinating things about this endearing classic – see more by clicking on my story here:


There you go – ten great films, all beginning with the letter “P”! Of course, there are many more, and I’m expecting you to leave a comment with yours, so I can do another “P” list soon with the ones you recommend!

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Categories: 70's Cinema, 70's Music, Academy Awards, Action Films, Art, Awards, Books / Media, Classic Rock, Comedy Movies, Cult Movies, Extreme Asian Cinema, Film Fight Club, Great Films, Hollywood, Movies, Movies About Movies, Obscure Movies, Obscure Music, Politics, Pop Culture, Talent/Celebrities, The President Of The United States

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17 replies

  1. Great post and list! Love this post theme especially. Anything with the “Princess Bride” is worth celebrating. I’m adding several of these to my list, with “Parasite” at the top. I recently saw that it was added to Hulu, so I’ll be watching it soon! Thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great “P” list, John. I would have added many of your choices to my personal list, too. Papillon with Steve McQueen is my favorite from the group.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Princess Bride, Poseidon Adventures, and Planet of the Apes. Three wows!!! I didn’t know Rod Serling wrote the ending of Planet of the Apes. Right now I am like Grandpa Peter Falk, reading aloud to Miles who was seriously injured. And, Earnest Borgnine was the absolute best in Poseidon Adventure. Terrific post, John!


  4. 8/10 for me, not bad and what a mix! Misty terrified me and parasite horrified me, but it was a very well done, excellent film.


  5. I enjoyed Clint Eastwood films, John, and I thought Soylent Green was very clever. I have never wanted to watch John Travolta older. I like to remember him in Grease.


  6. I have yet to see ‘Parasite’, but I really enjoyed all of the others. Great choices, John!
    I have to add two foreign films. The incomparable Louise Brooks, in the German silent film, ‘Pandora’s Box’, and the wonderful ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’, a Spanish film that is just magical and very sad.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You know what, Pete? “Pan’s” hit me completely wrong when I saw it years ago, although I love the Director’s other work…I actually own it and must re-visit…and there will be another “P” list in 26 weeks, so maybe these will show up, I’m woefully lacking in silent films!

      Liked by 1 person

      • I have seen PL maybe four to five times over the years, and it gets better every time I watch it. One film I completely agreed about when it got huge critical acclaim. I saw it at the cinema, then paid full price for the DVD as soon as it was released.


      • I love Pat Garrett – a bit of a “tone poem” with much less action than most westerns, but a sad goodbye to an era of the Wild West with terrific acting…


  7. Oooo I’m looking forward to Parasite! I’ve heard good things about it and it’s been on my to-watch list for a while, I think I’ve just been sucked into the ease of dipping into TV series as opposed to films of late. I’m struggling to remember whether I’ve seen Primary Colors. My memory is so piss poor these days that I’ll have to watch the first 70% of it to figure out whether I’ve seen it before or not. I’ll add it to the to-watch list! I know I’ve seen The Player but that needs a rewatch for the same memory-loss reasons 😆

    Excellent selection of P movies!xx

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Some phenomenal movies here!


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