Reversal of Fortune – 1990 Schroeder

a great combination of who-done-it mystery and an investigative/courtroom dramaadored by Ebert and Travers- 4 stars a piecethe narration is a pulpy choice (it’s from Glenn Close as she’s in a coma—reminiscent a little of

The 30th Best Director of All-Time: The Coen Brothers

The Coen Brothers. If you look at my top 500 films of al-time count (7 films) and top 100 films of the decade count (11) it would look like the Coen Brothers should be a

The Petrified Forest – 1936 Mayo

A stagy depression allegory—notable for the fine performances- particularly of an up and coming young Humphrey Bogart- a Warner’s contract player at this point—he’s 5th billed- apparently Leslie Howard (who did the stage version together)

The 29th Best Director of All-Time: Howard Hawks

Hawks. The last five years have not been kind to Howard Hawks on my rankings here. He was not just a supervisor as a director. He’s no byproduct and benefactor of an efficient studio system.

The 28th Best Director of All-Time: Steven Spielberg

Spielberg.  I have Spielberg’s filmography point totals higher than his #28 ranking here which would suggest, correctly I believe, that his oeuvre is stronger than he is as a director. I love Spielberg’s films. I

The 27th Best Director of All-Time: Woody Allen

Allen. I’m a great admirer of the work of Woody Allen. I hesitate saying “fan” because I feel like that implies some sort of personal affinity or preference and I don’t think that’s an accurate

The 26th Best Director of All-Time: Josef von Sternberg

Josef von Sternberg. Von Sternberg’s strength is his top three films and his overall landmark and meticulous aesthetic approach and innovation. It’s hard to ignore someone so synonymous with mise-en-scene, obviously an important aspect of

Ash is Purest White – 2018 Zhangke Jia

A pretty daunting film formally- I could see it working on me more with a second and third viewingA three-pronged love story—three different time periods (like Zhangke Jia’s previous Mountains May Depart) and carried out

The 25th Best Director of All-Time: F.W. Murnau

Murnau. It’s hard not to imagine where Murnau would be on this list if he hasn’t died in a car accident at age 42. Top 10? He was a master of cinematography (both the Oscar

The 24th Best Director of All-Time: Terrence 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 weaker

The 23rd Best Director of All-Time: Sergei Eisenstein

Eisenstein. I don’t have a ton of Eisenstein films in the archives but they all have fantastic grades (and 5 in the top 500) and certainly he warrants the distinction of “style-plus” direction.  It’s more

Batman – 1989 Burton

It is an imaginative triumph from Tim BurtonDeserved production design Oscar win from Anton Furst (committed suicide in 1991) who worked previously on 1987’s Full Metal Jacket-  Burton is the artist here (along with Furst)-

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