Five Favorite Films

Steven Seagal's Five Favorite Films

by | May 11, 2015 | Comments

Steven Seagal is known for delivering stylized brute force in action flicks like Under Siege and Executive Decision, but he’s also an actor/writer/producer/director with a considerable career. While we wait to be served by the action icon again in this week’s Absolution, we caught up with Seagal to learn what movies make him tick, and his Five Favorite Films demonstrate a solid foundation for the films in his repertoire. See the list here.

Regarding Henry (Mike Nichols, 1991) 41%


Just how reality can, in the blink of an eye, completely change somebody’s life. And the transformation. [Great] performances.

The Last Emperor (Bernardo Bertolucci, 1987) 89%

Once again, how lives can tremendously overturn one’s life and, you know, go from the sacred to the profane, the black to white. We as human beings are really merely passengers who think we have control over the vehicle we’re driving but… In terms of grandeur — powerful, you know, the ability to really reach down and really grab your entire essence and move you — I think that The Last Emperor was truly a masterpiece in every way.

The Godfather (Francis Ford Coppola, 1972) 98%

I thought The Godfather I and II were spectacular examples of wonderful storytelling, evolution of great characters and drama, amazing directing, Carmine Coppola’s spectacular music — I’m also a musician so I pay very close attention to music. I thought everything about [director of photography] Gordy Willis’ lighting… Of course, if we want to talk about lighting, let’s talk about Vittorio Storaro [director of photography] for The Last Emperor, breathtaking. [The two films] are sort of bookends; one doesn’t work without the other. It’s kind of the left and the right hand. I couldn’t really say which one was better to me, although in terms of creating a foundation, I think [the first one] was, once again, a masterpiece.

Red Beard (Akira Kurosawa, 1965) 73%

If we now want to get into films that — I arrogantly didn’t ask you if you would know anything about them; I just assumed, and assumption is the mother of all f—ups. Me, I’m Asian. I was raised in Asia and, to be honest with you, my favorite films of all time are really [Akira] Kurosawa films. He was a friend of mine. Yojimbo, Akahige meaning “Red Beard,” [and] Shichinin no samurai meaning “Seven Samurai,” I would say those are probably my three favorite films of all time. Even though Shichinin no samurai is the more famous one, I would probably pick Red Beard and Yojimbo.Red Beard is one of the most important movies in my life because it’s… I don’t want to say a movie about me, but it’s a movie about someone I tried to emulate subconsciously — or accidentally I should say — in that I am a martial artist, I am a healer, and I am a warrior, and those are the three kind of components that really make up Toshirô [Mifune]’s kind of character, you know? So I particularly relate to that movie on a very deep level.

Yojimbo (Akira Kurosawa, 1961) 95%

I also related to [Yojimbo] too because he’s a samurai who doesn’t really have to give a f— — forgive my French — but he doesn’t really care. He has [some of] the morals that I do in the sense that… Kurosawa is brilliant. He doesn’t really come out and let the audience know what Yojimbo’s doing. You almost wonder if he’s immoral because he’s killing all these folks and you’re not sure why until the end. At the end of the second act, you’ll see. You realize that both sides are evil, the whole town is evil. He wants to kind of annihilate all of them [laughing].RT: So it’s a question of morality and ethics.

Well Kurosawa wants you to believe that, but certainly, he wants you, in my opinion, to think that Yojimbo is immoral until the end of the second act, and then you’ll see that he, in fact, is just a great Samurai, with real ethics, you know? That’s the way I take it.

Absolution opens in limited release and on-demand on May 15.

Tag Cloud

TCA 2017 TLC cinemax toronto Adult Swim Thanksgiving Sundance Now war Oscars Freeform satire obituary Pop The Witch Pop TV Superheroe spinoff Fall TV supernatural BET Awards dogs Black Mirror latino disaster Mystery 24 frames Biopics Netflix sitcom zombies LGBT Mudbound Tubi Tumblr asian-american The Arrangement Nominations children's TV 2019 Endgame versus television Syfy romantic comedy biography FX crime drama SXSW Marathons nbcuniversal mockumentary Countdown canceled Tomatazos Baby Yoda Women's History Month Horror TV movie Ovation Watching Series First Reviews PBS all-time Sci-Fi Sony Pictures what to watch mission: impossible YouTube Red richard e. Grant comics psychological thriller Summer Apple superhero 007 Pride Month BAFTA batman SundanceTV Tarantino Travel Channel Character Guide miniseries Writers Guild of America football FXX Shondaland Britbox series Showtime Mary Poppins Returns psycho A24 Calendar Warner Bros. Schedule Lifetime Classic Film First Look Television Critics Association Ghostbusters blaxploitation ITV christmas movies Heroines CNN blockbuster ESPN WarnerMedia cancelled television comic IFC Films nfl Awards Tour Holiday FX on Hulu zombie green book GIFs Best and Worst Stephen King critics Mindy Kaling composers Sundance TV Video Games Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt joker Vudu docudrama Martial Arts crime travel strong female leads TCA Awards scary movies Ellie Kemper transformers true crime Animation venice Premiere Dates GLAAD Television Academy jamie lee curtis sports hollywood Emmys Music 2015 Fantasy CBS Academy Awards medical drama emmy awards theme song E! hist Dark Horse Comics FOX Discovery Channel Interview Year in Review talk show festival thriller Amazon Prime Video unscripted dark BBC animated BBC One cancelled TV series TIFF harry potter video on demand renewed TV shows Certified Fresh witnail PaleyFest Crunchyroll slashers sequels BBC America Peacock dceu DC Comics USA Network stoner NBC Box Office Netflix Christmas movies Red Carpet A&E parents Trophy Talk teaser laika romance cops facebook toy story award winner dramedy remakes New York Comic Con comedies DirecTV cancelled space Spectrum Originals Hallmark Rocketman Chernobyl Star Wars Acorn TV GoT Marvel OWN serial killer kids films Amazon concert discovery comiccon Comics on TV Holidays LGBTQ indie Rocky tv talk best E3 Epix Nickelodeon spy thriller Shudder Black History Month book dragons CW Seed Funimation Arrowverse revenge science fiction HBO Go DC streaming service Paramount spain Pirates festivals game show Marvel Studios 45 Fox News ABC Family Sundance video Captain marvel Teen sequel boxoffice Pixar rotten movies we love Crackle VICE MCU DGA adaptation Disney Plus reboot rotten Amazon Studios classics documentaries BET AMC APB VOD Food Network Starz American Society of Cinematographers Emmy Nominations Opinion singing competition crossover halloween fast and furious scorecard VH1 Amazon Prime Reality Competition 2020 elevated horror name the review worst DC Universe Comedy Trailer indiana jones NYCC El Rey Country Star Trek Western PlayStation USA The Purge Elton John Apple TV Plus TCM historical drama TV Land Song of Ice and Fire HBO Max natural history Awards Action cooking Chilling Adventures of Sabrina cults diversity screenings anime casting aliens 20th Century Fox nature TNT Lionsgate binge Extras Rom-Com crime thriller werewolf Cosplay quibi police drama documentary spider-man 2018 Set visit TBS Marvel Television Turner Classic Movies Superheroes Binge Guide CBS All Access Comedy Central political drama Universal WGN Disney streaming service San Diego Comic-Con spanish language based on movie hispanic streaming child's play Columbia Pictures Musicals stop motion YouTube cartoon 4/20 SDCC Disney HBO Winners golden globes Film Election See It Skip It Lifetime Christmas movies Film Festival YA reviews Kids & Family Grammys justice league technology Esquire Musical worst movies cars free movies MSNBC Comic Book universal monsters Hulu news Nat Geo anthology zero dark thirty ghosts Brie Larson Family Quiz Spike dc Hallmark Christmas movies ABC game of thrones President vampires Mary Tyler Moore doctor who RT21 Drama foreign Super Bowl 21st Century Fox X-Men robots Reality Trivia Cartoon Network CMT 71st Emmy Awards Hear Us Out cats stand-up comedy Photos Mary poppins adventure a nightmare on elm street IFC period drama 2017 screen actors guild canceled TV shows south america RT History independent 72 Emmy Awards breaking bad Avengers social media Walt Disney Pictures Bravo Disney+ Disney Plus Podcast Valentine's Day Rock MTV Infographic Apple TV+ movies Spring TV franchise Masterpiece TruTV politics Anna Paquin directors History twilight Cannes criterion finale 2016 Winter TV Turner chucky Sneak Peek Toys Lucasfilm National Geographic Logo mutant Polls and Games die hard The CW TV renewals Paramount Network OneApp YouTube Premium Christmas sag awards ratings Disney Channel The Walking Dead Pet Sematary TCA Winter 2020 Creative Arts Emmys TCA cancelled TV shows