Since you leave it so open ("American films") you leave the gate open for
me to list my favorites. These all seem to me to take American culture as
a main subject, and comment on it, usually in dark ways (my favorite way):
Taxi Driver
Blue Velvet
Full Metal Jacket (yes, Kubrick is a Brit, but so what? Vietnam was an
   American War)
Paris Is Burning
Miller's Crossing
The Godfather Part II
Glengarry Glen Ross
The Player
The Last Picture Show
Night of the Hunter
Roger & Me (funny/angry documentary about GM plant closings)
Do the Right Thing
The Manchurian Candidate
I'd love to teach a course with this film list.
John Hoppe
On Thu, 6 Oct 1994, Mark Dryfoos wrote:
> This spring I am teaching a course in American film.  Each year I try to come
> up with a listing of films which might be of interest to my class.  If anyone
> has a good list of films which they feel should (must) be shown, please let
> me know.