Author Topic: Favorite film directors!  (Read 3003 times)

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Offline Ken B

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #20 on: September 11, 2017, 12:44:03 PM »
roughly chronologically

Charles Chaplin
Preston Sturges
Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger
Alfred Hitchcock


Good man! But you forgot Lubitsch in this early bunch, who is the greatest of all. But I rank Sturges first as a writer.

I would put Capra in for Ford btw, a controversial decision!
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Offline Ken B

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #21 on: September 11, 2017, 12:50:33 PM »
Hard Eight
Boogie Nights
Magnolia
Punch Drunk Love
There Will Be Blood
The Master
Inherent Vice

I think that's his complete filmography. It is short, diverse, and great. Hard Eight is a casino story about a professional gambler learning his trade; Boogie Nights is a 3-hour epic set in the world of 70s adult films; Magnolia is an "everyone is connected" melodrama; Punch Drunk Love is a romantic comedy with Adam Sandler; There Will Be Blood is an American capitalist/western epic; The Master is another American capitalist/western epic but with religion instead of oil; Inherent Vice is a shaggy-dog it's-all-about-the-journey comedy about a stoned detective unearthing a conspiracy.

BN, TWBB, and TM are masterpieces; The Master is downright Kubrick-like. There is a new Paul Thomas Anderson film coming this Christmas with Daniel Day Lewis, supposedly his last role before retiring.

PTA is probably my favorite living director, and Boogie Nights, The Master, and Inherent Vice are some of my favorite recent movies. Lot of good stuff in the others, too, even Magnolia, which is overall a little bit too much.

Someone said that to be a Sondheim fan is to always have your heart broken. I feel that way about PTA. Watching Magnolia on first release I thought I was watching the best film since The Godfather, maybe since Vertigo. And then ... we'll, no spoilers but the film went splat. I have never seen a movie turn to shit so suddenly.

Nothing since then has been a complete success IMO, but most have bits of genius.
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Offline Ken B

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #22 on: September 11, 2017, 12:53:14 PM »
That's a nice introduction, thanks! Magnolia is a film I know by name, but I don't think I have seen it. If I have seen it, it must have been forgettable.

One thing Magnolia is not is forgettable! I don't want to say more since I don't like spoilers, but you wouldn't forget Magnolia!
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Offline Ghost Sonata

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #23 on: September 11, 2017, 01:39:41 PM »
I will enthusiastically second Greg for Murnau, Todd for Malick (and Ridley Scott's Blade Runner), and alien for Herzog.  Hitchcock, of course. No one has mentioned Bergman - if push came to shove likely my favorite all-time for conveying inner drama no one else has the wherewithal, much less courage, to confront (Haneke and Fassbinder being the only exceptions who come to mind). Jean Vigo, absolutely, for the genius, joie and spontaneity of his few films.  Götz Spielmann, Dardenne Bros, Fritz Lang, René Clair, Marcel Carné,  Éric Rohmer, Cocteau, Powell & Pressburger, Dreyer  Agnès Varda, and Demy have created many more sublime cinematic moments for me than most of those listed in previous posts.  Kurosawa and Ozu, natch.  Carl Bessai in Canada (don't miss his Lola) doesn't get an even break here - American films and directors are, generally, way overrated, in my opinion; the natural concomitant of American socio-economic dominance.  And our stock in actors continues to decline - one reason why the producers of the Wire brought in so much talent from overseas.  See:  https://www.theguardian.com/film/2015/jul/05/us-rallies-to-stop-uk-taking-hollywood-by-storm     
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Offline Cato

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #24 on: September 11, 2017, 01:42:31 PM »
Fritz Lang  Why?  M, Metropolis

Merian Cooper - The Four Feathers, King Kong, (THE ORIGINAL and the BEST!  8)   )  She, War Eagles

Victor FlemingThe Wizard of Oz, Gone With the Wind, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, A Guy Named Joe

Orson Welles - Citizen Kane, Lady from Shanghai, Magnificent Ambersons, Macbeth, Touch of Evil, Chimes at Midnight, The Trial

John Ford - They Were Expendable, The Quiet Man and some Westerns with John Wayne   ;) 8)

Akira Kurosawa - Yojimbo, The Seven Samurai, Ran

Sergei Bondarchuk - War and Peace, Waterloo, Boris Godunov

Andrei Tarkovsky - Ivan's Childhood, Andrei Rublev, Stalker, Solaris

Werner Herzog - Jeder Fuer Sich und Gott Gegen Alle: Die Geschichte von Kaspar Hauser, Aguirre, Fitzcarraldo, Rescue Dawn, Grizzly Man

Clint Eastwood - High Plains Drifter, Unforgiven, American Sniper

Brian de Palma - Sisters, Phantom of the Paradise, Obsession, Carrie, The Fury, Scarface, The Untouchables, Mission: Impossible

Steven Spielberg - Close Encounters of the Third Kind, E.T., Catch Me If You Can, Saving Private Ryan

David Lynch - Dune, Blue Velvet, Lost Highway,  Mulholland Drive

and yes....

Alfred Hitchcock - Oh come on!  ;)   YOU already know why!   ;)

« Last Edit: September 11, 2017, 02:28:51 PM by Cato »
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Offline Archaic Torso of Apollo

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #25 on: September 11, 2017, 02:00:34 PM »

Past Their Prime:
Francis Ford Coppola (70s stuff)
Martin Scorsese (through Goodfellas)
Steven Spielberg (solid through Raiders, and a few after)
Ridley Scott (for Alien and Blade Runner alone)

[...]

Outlier:
Terrence Malick (a visual and atmospheric genius, some of his films feel like random shots stitched together)

I agree with these assessments, although none of the directors named is a favorite of mine. Malick in particular is frustrating - visual poetry wasted on banal dialogue and voice-overs.

My personal faves list hasn't changed in several years:

Bergman
Tarkovsky
Buñuel
Kubrick
Kurosawa
Kieslowski

One level down from the top tier:

Altman
Dreyer
Herzog
Wenders
Chaplin
Welles
Fellini
Jarmusch
Antonioni
Parajanov

Now I'm gonna set the cat among the pigeons by stating how overrated I think Hitchcock is. I recently re-watched Vertigo and North by Northwest, and was struck by how visually crude and schematic (in a connect-the-dots sort of way) they were. Still, fairly enjoyable, with good scores by Bernard Herrmann.

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Offline GioCar

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #26 on: September 11, 2017, 07:14:07 PM »
Stanley Kubrick
Andrei Tarkovsky
Hayao Miyazaki

above all, possibly in that order.

Then, in no particular order, those whose films I remember most are:
Woody Allen
Coen Brothers
Quentin Tarantino
Brian De Palma
David Lynch
David Cronenberg
Stephen Frears
Danny Boyle
Luis Buñuel
Pedro Almodóvar
Jacques Tati
Patrice Leconte
Luchino Visconti
Federico Fellini
Nanni Moretti
Werner Herzog
Lars von Trier
Aki Kaurismäki
Krzysztof Kieślowski
Emir Kusturica
Radu Mihăileanu
Alexandr Sokurov
Zhang Yimou (not the recent movies...)
Yasujirō Ozu
Akira Kurosawa
Takeshi Kitano
Kim Ki-duk
Peter Weir


« Last Edit: September 11, 2017, 07:21:36 PM by GioCar »

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #27 on: September 11, 2017, 10:38:52 PM »
Should have included Powell and Pressburger and Chaplin myself.
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Offline TheGSMoeller

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #28 on: September 13, 2017, 03:08:14 AM »
Yet again I forgot another director  :o : Rainer Werner Fassbinder

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #29 on: September 13, 2017, 03:22:09 AM »
Now I'm gonna set the cat among the pigeons by stating how overrated I think Hitchcock is. I recently re-watched Vertigo and North by Northwest, and was struck by how visually crude and schematic (in a connect-the-dots sort of way) they were. Still, fairly enjoyable, with good scores by Bernard Herrmann.

The most consistent visual crudity across his work has to be the inevitable process shots—car interiors with film playing in the windows. But, that was driven by his obsession with controlling lighting (an essentially visual concern) and the philosophy that you don’t put a star on the screen to look otherwise than good, very good.  So, yeah, for instance, either one accepts that, or not.
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Online mc ukrneal

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #30 on: September 13, 2017, 04:21:21 AM »
I agree with these assessments, although none of the directors named is a favorite of mine. Malick in particular is frustrating - visual poetry wasted on banal dialogue and voice-overs.

My personal faves list hasn't changed in several years:

Bergman
Tarkovsky
Buñuel
Kubrick
Kurosawa
Kieslowski

One level down from the top tier:

Altman
Dreyer
Herzog
Wenders
Chaplin
Welles
Fellini
Jarmusch
Antonioni
Parajanov

Now I'm gonna set the cat among the pigeons by stating how overrated I think Hitchcock is. I recently re-watched Vertigo and North by Northwest, and was struck by how visually crude and schematic (in a connect-the-dots sort of way) they were. Still, fairly enjoyable, with good scores by Bernard Herrmann.


I love that film. But Hitchcock gets overhyped sometimes, so I can understand the sentiment. But if we are going to talk about overrated, we can't fail to mention one of the worst directors in history who gets a pass from his fans at this site - David Lynch. What dreck - almost as bad as Tarantino sometimes is (another generally overrated Director). Reading all the adulation he gets on the other thread is difficult when you think he's not particularly talented and a one-trick pony (shock value anyone?).
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Offline Rinaldo

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #31 on: September 13, 2017, 04:40:41 AM »
Reading all the adulation he gets on the other thread is difficult when you think he's not particularly talented and a one-trick pony (shock value anyone?).

While I'm far from the adulating type when it comes to Lynch, I'd argue he's a very talented artist. What I like about him the most is the fact that there's a lot of humanity under all the shock & surreal stuff he does. Have you seen The Elephant Man or The Straight Story, by any chance? I perfectly understand that his more unhinged work isn't for everyone and might be perceived as you described, but I usually enjoy his unique combination of dream logic and pop sensibilities. Plus, he can be quite hitchcockian when he wants (and I mean that as a compliment :)).

Offline drogulus

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #32 on: September 13, 2017, 04:44:20 AM »

     You have to be pretty damn good to be consistently overrated like Lynch, Hitchcock and Tarantino.

     
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Online mc ukrneal

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #33 on: September 13, 2017, 04:45:39 AM »
While I'm far from the adulating type when it comes to Lynch, I'd argue he's a very talented artist. What I like about him the most is the fact that there's a lot of humanity under all the shock & surreal stuff he does. Have you seen The Elephant Man or The Straight Story, by any chance? I perfectly understand that his more unhinged work isn't for everyone and might be perceived as you described, but I usually enjoy his unique combination of dream logic and pop sensibilities. Plus, he can be quite hitchcockian when he wants (and I mean that as a compliment :)).
Elephant Man is the exception - the one move he made that is generally excellent. I'll give you that. But I feel no humanity in his later works. I never feel anything for his characters, in fact quite the opposite. I usually feel they get what they deserve and wish it would happen faster! I find one thing that works against him is that his characters make stupid decisions and thus I cannot suspend disbelief when that happens. Mulholland Drive comes to mind.
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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #34 on: September 13, 2017, 04:46:26 AM »
     You have to be pretty damn good to be consistently overrated like Lynch, Hitchcock and Tarantino.

     
Or really good at hyping/marketing yourself...
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Offline Cato

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #35 on: September 13, 2017, 05:02:29 AM »
Elephant Man is the exception - the one move he made that is generally excellent. I'll give you that. But I feel no humanity in his later works. I never feel anything for his characters, in fact quite the opposite. I usually feel they get what they deserve and wish it would happen faster! I find one thing that works against him is that his characters make stupid decisions and thus I cannot suspend disbelief when that happens. Mulholland Drive comes to mind.


Then you need to see The Straight Story, which is one of the most wonderful movies ever!
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Offline drogulus

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #36 on: September 13, 2017, 05:22:46 AM »
Or really good at hyping/marketing yourself...

     I don't think the desire to rewatch the films of these directors over decades comes down to hype and marketing. Further, these directors I named are influential among other filmmakers to a considerable degree. I don't know what all goes into artistic merit, but I'd be willing to bet a widespread desire to revisit the films over an extended period and influence on generations of filmmakers are big factors.
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Online mc ukrneal

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #37 on: September 13, 2017, 05:41:15 AM »
     I don't think the desire to rewatch the films of these directors over decades comes down to hype and marketing. Further, these directors I named are influential among other filmmakers to a considerable degree. I don't know what all goes into artistic merit, but I'd be willing to bet a widespread desire to revisit the films over an extended period and influence on generations of filmmakers are big factors.
Most people don't re-watch Lynch movies. Most people don't know his movies. He's known for the tv show.  Tarentino is certainly at a different level with movies like Pulp Fiction.
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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #38 on: September 13, 2017, 06:29:11 AM »

Then you need to see The Straight Story, which is one of the most wonderful movies ever!

Note taken.
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Offline TheGSMoeller

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Re: Favorite film directors!
« Reply #39 on: September 13, 2017, 06:32:59 AM »

Then you need to see The Straight Story, which is one of the most wonderful movies ever!

Yes! The ending, although understated, is extremely powerful. Farnsworth's acting is so natural it feels like a documentary at times.