3. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
directed by Terry Jones and Terry Gilliam
Monty Python changed the world of sketch comedy in the 1960s, and The Holy Grail is my favorite of their forays into the world of cinema. Just as hilarious and irreverent today as it was in 1975, this is a masterwork of satire, silliness and non-sequiturs. It pokes fun not only at stereotypical epic heroics, but at the form of cinema itself, whether in the opening credit subtitles, or in the abrupt conclusion. Having been created by sketch comedians, it’s notable that the film is able to exist both as a series of vignettes and an overarching narrative. Monty Python and the Holy Grail finds six comedians at the top of their game, portraying (as usual) a seemingly endless slew of unforgettable characters, from the Black Knight, to Brave Sir Robin, to Dennis (who’s 37, he’s not old), to the Taunting French Guard… the list goes on and on.