Michael Pitt: 10 Greatest movies of all time

9 of 11

3. The Dreamers

Release Date: February 4, 2004

Box Office:  $14,082,883 worldwide

Critical acclaim: Praised for its story, performances, and themes of sex and love, the film was well received, getting a total of 11 nominations.

About the role: Mathew, an American exchange student in Paris, gets in way over his head when he becomes one-third of an erotic triangle. French twins, Isabelle and Theo, are two halves of the same person and Mathew is their great love. A great performance by Michael Pitt, who is able to come off as a wide-eyed stranger transitioning into a weary man tired of the ongoing troubles happening around him.

Simply the best: Caution for all who fear full frontal nudity because nothing remains covered by the end, absolutely nothing. If I had seen this in 3-D, I’d be afraid of Eva Green’s humongous breasts poking one of my eyes out. Directed by taboo sexual activities enthusiast, Bernardo Bertolucci, made famous for Last Tango in Paris, a movie that brought him both critical praise and legal trouble. The Dreamers may not be as controversial or cringe-worthy, but its subject matter is the insignia of taboo.

Based on the novel, “The Holy Innocents” by Gilbert Adair, The Dreamers revolves around a three-way relationship between a brother and sister and their American friend. Set during the 1968 Paris student riots, Mathew falls in love with both siblings, intellectually in love with the brother and romantically in love with the sister.

The film is controversial for a couple of reasons, the incestuous relationship between Isabelle and Theo, the male full-frontal nudity, and the implied homosexual relationship happening between the two boys are just some examples. They’re plenty of philosophical discussions and borderline pornographic sex to go around. It’s a beautiful story that feels like visual poetry.