Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Academic Magnet High School - North Charleston, South Carolina.


Magnet’s Top 4 Films

Inspired by Letterboxd Top 4, here are Magnet’s top 4 films…

Inspired by the notorious Letterboxd Top 4 interviews with celebrities, we decided to review some of Magnet’s top four favorite movies. 


Wilson Swenson

  • Birdemic: Shock and Terror
  • No Country for Old Men
  • Chungking Express
  • The Young Girls of Rochefort


Letterboxd: wislonswansong


Wilson: I think this is a great top four! Birdemic is absolutely hilarious and it has some of the best scenes in any movie ever made. No Country for Old Men is my favorite movie of all time. It’s a neo-western from the early 2000s about a guy who finds a bunch of heroin in the desert. It’s super good! Chungking Express is a romcom from Hong Kong directed by Wong Kar-wai, one of my favorite directors. I love to watch his movies. The Young Girls of Rochefort (Les Demoiselles de Rochefort) is a technicolor musical by Jacques Demy, who is also one of my favorite directors.


Milla: Some of you may be thinking that Birdemic: Shock and Terror is a joke. I shared the same thoughts until I spoke with Wilson on this matter. HE IS NOT JOKING! The movie is actually revolutionary and ahead of its time. Definitely a must watch and I can see how it makes its way into the top 4 of anyone’s list. For fans of Birdemic, I have to recommend Llamageddon


1 Recommendation: Drive starring Ryan Gosling, directed by Nicolas Winding Refn


Milla Broadwater

  • Charade
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower
  • Ocean’s Eleven


Wilson: Milla’s picks are diverse and represent her well. Funnily enough, I have not seen a single one of these movies. I will definitely add them to my list, though. I love a good heist movie like Ocean’s Eleven


Milla: I mean, I’m biased but I think that these movies are some of the most enjoyable movies that make viewers go through a wave of emotions throughout their entire duration.


1 Recommendation: The Wicker Man starring Christopher Plummer, directed by Robin Hardy.



  • Frequency 
  • Saw
  • Ghost Rider
  • Se7en


Wilson: I wish the mysterious Jonah would’ve given us his last name because his top four is really good! I have never seen Frequency or Ghost Rider but Frequency sounds interesting and Ghost Rider definitely looks like a wild ride. Saw, however, is one of my favorite franchises. I LOVE a good Saw movie. My personal favorite is Saw 3 but I understand putting the original Saw for old times’ sake. Se7en is also a classic but I don’t have as passionate thoughts about it as Saw


Milla: Wow…This is a very interesting list, yet I can see how they all go together. I have never seen Saw or Frequency, but I have to agree with Wilson that Frequency looks really interesting. Might have to give that one a watch. I have however seen Ghost Rider and Se7en and, I’m sorry Jonah, but I could not finish Ghost Rider. It was genuinely one of the most confusing movies I’ve ever seen with one of the worst CGI effects, although I have found some bad movies to be enjoyable, so to each their own.


1 Recommendation: Saw X starring Tobin Bell, directed by Kevin Greutart.


Harrison Michael McDowell Crites

  • White Chicks
  • Crawl
  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
  • Ferris Bueller’s Day Off


Wilson: I don’t have many thoughts on Mr. Crites’s top four, besides the fact that I saw White Chicks and had nightmares about it afterwards. Ferris Bueller is a solid pick. My dad really likes Christmas Vacation, and I’m sure it keeps Harrison in the holiday spirit all year long. 


Milla: Harrison’s list is filled with movies that are enjoyable and, for the most part, make one laugh. Although, Crawl is the definite outlier for this list. If you’re one for monster movies, I’d recommend giving Kong: Skull Island a watch.


It exemplifies how everyone deserves to be themselves to matter who they are or who they love.

— Mr. Crites

Side Note: Harrison didn’t put this in the top 4, but every class period that we were writing this article he mentioned the movie Love, Simon. I suppose it is just barely below one of these other 4 movies and didn’t make the cut forMr. Crites’ top 4. Such a shame! He shares why he loves the movie when saying, “It exemplifies how everyone deserves to be themselves to matter who they are or who they love.”


1 Recommendation: Love, Victor is not a movie, but we think he’ll enjoy this TV show. Also, Friday starring Ice Cube, directed by F. Gary Gray. 


Sean Bacon

  • Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
  • The Polar Express
  • Star Wars: The Phantom Menace
  • Napoleon


Wilson: This is the craziest top four I’ve ever seen. What really throws me off is the inclusion of The Polar Express, especially as Mr. Bacon indicated that he “love(s) thriller”  and “lots of action”. Did he like the hot chocolate scene? I was thrilled by that. Maybe the thrill came from the horrifying sight of Tom Hanks playing every character. I guess we will never know. The inclusion of The Phantom Menace is also a bold choice, but I respect it. Meesa love this top four! 


Milla: This varying list displays Mr. Bacon’s wide range of interests in movies. From Sci-fi, to historical drama, to a Tom Hanks Christmas, this list will keep you intrigued through every watch. Though, when asked why he loves these movies he said that he “loves thrillers”. I fail to see how The Polar Express is a thriller, but maybe I’m just missing something. I can’t speak on Napoleon, but I’m a big fan of Star Wars so I love the other choices on this list!


1 Recommendation: Hop starring James Marsden, directed by Tim Hill. 


Ms. Renes

  • Gangs of New York
  • Home Alone
  • Donnie Darko
  • The Sandlot


Wilson: Milla and I knew Ms. Renes would have great picks for her top four favorite movies, and we were not disappointed. I must admit that I was not expecting some of these picks from her. She said she likes to watch Home Alone and The Sandlot with her kids. I personally think Donnie Darko is a vestige from her days of dating someone who rode his motorcycle through the halls of her high school. She also said that Gangs of New York was her favorite Daniel Day-Lewis, one of her favorite actors, movie. 


Milla: Wow! Ms. Renes really shocked me with this reveal. Donnie Darko is a very interesting pick for her, and was probably the most shocking reveal. When asked about why she loves this movie, she revealed that she loved it in college so it’s just a bit nostalgic. I am intrigued by this occurrence of putting Christmas movies into the top 4. Maybe these people just like to feel the festive spirit year round? 


1 Recommendation: Nightcrawler starring Jake Gylennhal, directed by Dan Gilroy. 


Mr. Garris

  • Alexander Nevsky
  • Gone with the Wind
  • Doctor Zhivago
  • The Lion in Winter


Wilson: I had Mr. Garris sophomore year for AP World and after spending a year with him, this list does not surprise me at all. All four of these are history movies/period pieces, which also makes perfect sense when considering Mr. Garris. I have not seen a single one of his picks but they all seem intriguing. I’ll have to add them all to my list!


Milla: When asked about his top 4 movies, Mr. Garris was ready and immediately shot these 4 films out, and the list does not surprise, nor let down. I don’t have much more to add about these movies seeing as I haven’t seen any of them, but for the history lovers out there, this is definitely a list to inspect closer.


2 Recommendations: Stalker directed by Andrei Tarkovsky, The Favourite directed by Yorgos Lanthimos. 


Michael Lee

  • Kung Fu Hustle
  • Shaolin Soccer
  • God of Cookery
  • Flirting Scholar


A note from Michael: These four movies all feature the prominent actor-turned-director Stephen Chow, known for his absurd “mo lei tau” comedic style that took Hong Kong cinema by storm in the 90s. Apparently, there are many Cantonese/HK-specific jokes that make up half of the comedy, but the quips and context alone are enough to make me hoot and holler every time I rewatch one of these films.


Wilson: Michael’s picks are not all movies that I’ve seen, but they definitely seem to make sense if you know Michael. A lot of Michael’s sense of humor can be connected to these four films, it seems. 


Milla: Based on Michael’s description of these movies, and my research of them, I can see how these movies have influenced Michael’s humor. 


1 Recommendation: Chungking Express directed by Wong Kar-Wai. 



  • Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse
  • The Dark Knight 
  • Interstellar
  • Hereditary


Wilson: I’m not sure which Landen this is, but he has good picks. The Dark Knight and Interstellar are “film buff” classics, and they definitely deserve to be high up on anyone’s list. I especially love Interstellar. Hereditary is a great horror movie. Ari Aster is so creepy and he looks so innocent and kind. I wonder what happened to him to make him make movies like this. Spider-Man is a great new animated movie (that will probably get snubbed at the Oscars).


Milla: The Dark Knight and Interstellar are popular picks for film lovers to include in their top 4, and it is well deserved. Although it was a really enjoyable film, I have a minor complaint about Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse. I was unaware that it ended on such a cliffhanger, so although the story and animations were captivating, I would wait to watch this movie until part 2 is closer to release date. (just a warning)


1 Recommendation: Oldboy directed by Park Chan-wook. 


Ms. Olivia

  • Imitation of Life
  • The Equalizer
  • The Temptations
  • Aladdin


Wilson: We asked Ms. Olivia for her picks in the hallway and she didn’t have a lot of time to think, but we still think she came up with a good list .Technically, Ms. Yackey told her to put Aladdin in, but whatever. Technically The Equalizer and The Temptations are T.V shows, but we aren’t being picky! You should give them a watch if you have the free time. Imitation of Life is a romance/western movie from the late 50s that seems very interesting! I’ll have to give some of these a watch. 


Milla: From this list, I’ve only seen Aladdin, which is one of my favorite Disney movies. The soundtrack to this animated movie is bound to get stuck in your head. From romance to comedy to action, Ms. Olivia has a wide range of interests that all seem very interesting.


1 Recommendation: Do The Right Thing directed by and starring Spike Lee. 


Talia Barsness

  • How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
  • 10 Things I Hate About You
  • Mamma Mia
  • Mission: Impossible


Wilson: I think this is a solid top four. Mamma Mia was included in many of the responses we received. Talia also seems to like the number “10” as it appears in the titles of two of her favorites! 


Milla: This has to be one of my favorite lists from this edition! Ms. Barsness seems to love romantic comedies, and these are some of the most popular ones around Magnet. I would like a clarification on which Mission: Impossible movie she loves, or is it the whole franchise? Either way, these action packed movies are some of my favorites!


1 Recommendation: The Proposal directed by Anne Fletcher, starring Sandra Bullock


Aiden Hanna

  • The Princess Bride
  • The Grand Budapest Hotel
  • Moonrise Kingdom
  • Monty Python and the Holy Grail


Wilson: I really love this top four; I think it’s my favorite of this edition. I am a huge fan of Wes Anderson and Grand Budapest is my second favorite of his movies. Additionally, Moonrise Kingdom is one of my other favorite movies from him because of the specific atmosphere that is created in that film. The Princess Bride and Monty Python and the Holy Grail are both movies that my dad really likes that we watch together, so they also have a special place in my heart. I even used to have a shirt of the scene where the knight gets all of his limbs chopped off. Great picks all around! 


Milla: This list is comprised of some film buff classics, and I fully appreciate it! I love Wes Anderson’s interesting and distinct style of storytelling and Moonrise Kingdom is one of my favorite films of his because it encapsulates his peculiarness so well. The Princess Bride is such a childhood nostalgia trip for me and seeing many people respond to the form with this movie has unlocked some memories for me.


1 Recommendation: Jojo Rabbit directed by and starring Taika Waititi


That’s it for this issue! We had a LOT of responses to this form so be sure to come back to see if you’re featured in the next one! 



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