1. ED WOOD (1994)
At this point, frequent collaborators Johnny Depp and Tim Burton can probably finish each other’s sentences; Depp could say, “Our last movie together, Alice In Wonderland,” and Burton would follow up with, “was absolutely dreadful.” Long ago, however, Depp and Burton used to team up for unique and damn good flicks, particularly the idiosyncratic, black-and-white biopic Ed Wood.
To us, it’s quite possibly Burton’s best movie; if that’s ultimately an example of hyperbolic overload, then Ed Wood is inarguably the weirdo director’s most unfairly neglected movie. Depp stars as the titular Hollywood punchline, who, back in the 1950s, cranked out some of the worst movies ever made. Lighthearted and campy, Ed Wood treats the hack’s life with admirable reverence.
At his straight-faced best, Murray co-stars as Bunny Breckinridge, Wood’s flamboyantly gay friend who top-lines his pal’s colossal cinematic fail Plan 9 From Outer Space. Like the rest of the cast, Murray fully commits to a pitiable character, one whose real-life existence makes him all the more tragically hilarious.