The 17th Best Director of All-Time: Terrence Malick

Malick. Malick’s case is incredibly strong for a relatively modern auteur.  He is certainly having a puzzling decade by first giving us perhaps his best career work- and then falling on his face with a

The 18th Best Director of All-Time: Max Ophüls

Ophuls. This is one of those limbs I’m going out on. I’m way higher on ophuls than the consensus. During 2011 and 2012 I saw all of ophuls’ available films (his early pre ww2 german

The Illusionist – 2006 Burger

It’s a near-perfect (not faultless) modest storm for non-auteur archiveable cinema (Burger’s only archiveable film to date) of great elements-- from the cast (Giamatti is the highlight), score by Philip Glass, Dick Pope’s Oscar-nominated cinematography

Grease – 1978 Kleiser

It’s a very good blend of winning songs (all well performed and staged), writing and performances, from not only Travolta and Newton-John but from the entire cast including Stockard Channing- from the inspired cartoon opening

The 19th Best Director of All-Time: Luis Buñuel

Bunuel. To some it may feel like Bunuel should be closer to the top 10 but he’s got some really well reviewed films that don’t qualify for me (docs and experimental films) and several films

He Walked by Night – 1948 Werker

Lots of debate on how much of the film was directed by uncredited Anthony Mann Basehart is great here as a pre-Travis Bickle Travis Bickle disillusioned war-vet killer/criminal John Alton the DP may the real

Love & Friendship – 2016 Stillman

Not a huge deal in the larger scheme of things but I’m with many of the critics that disliked the god-awful title for the film In the oeuvre of Jane Austen films this one has

The 20th Best Director of All-Time: Sergio Leone

Leone. There are no easy choices on this list/project. By and large, I think much more of all 3 leone/eastwood collaborations than the TSPDT critical consensus. Also, I view Leone’s style as a huge plus

The Last of the Mohicans – 1936 Seitz

Randolph Scott is absolutely perfect as Hawkeye If you can get past the racial implications of casting Bruce Cabot as Magua (it’s 1936)- he’s pretty terrific in the role There’s a tremendous dolly-in during the

Graduation – 2016 Mungiu

It’s a slow-burn film detailing deconstructing a life and a morality study Winner of best director at cannes Nearly all diegetic music Formally the film requires multiple viewings- there’s some nice elements like the stone

Juarez – 1939 Dieterle

One of Warner Brothers premiere big budget pictures from 1939—it is a really solid film- it just got swallowed up, historically, in the tsunami of great films from Hollywood’s golden year. Muni is one of

The 21st Best Director of All-Time: F.W. Murnau

Murnau. It’s hard not to think that if Murnau hadn’t died in a car accident at age 42 it wouldn’t be him in Lang’s spot or higher- even perhaps in the top 10. It was

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