Charles Chaplin Leaving America, c.1952 by Richard Avedon

When asked by Milos Stehlik of Facets what were my ten all time favorites, I cheated and gave him these eleven titles, in no particular order:

  • La Jetée by Chris Marker
  • Ménilmontant by Dmitry Kirsanov
  • Shoah by Claude Lanzmann
  • The Saragossa Manuscript by Wojciech Has
  • Pickpocket by Robert Bresson
  • Playtime by Jacques Tati
  • L’Amour à Mort by Alain Resnais
  • Hotel Terminus by Marcel Ophuls
  • The “historical” films of Roberto Rossellini (you could start with Rise to Power of Louis XIV)
  • Warning Shadows by Arthur Robison
  • The Gleaners and I by Agnès Varda (don’t miss the sequel on the DVD)

Recently I was asked by They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They? to come up with a list of 50 films by Fall ’13.
So, in no particular order, here is a list:

  • Night and Fog (Resnais)
  • 7 Up series (Apted)
  • A Man Escaped (Bresson)
  • Night Mail (Wright/Watt)
  • Lovers on the Bridge (Carax)
  • The Battle of Algiers (Pontecorvo)
  • Greed (von Stroheim)
  • 20 The Great Dictator (Chaplin)
  • Army of Shadows (Melville)
  • L’Atalante (Vigo)
  • The Hour of the Furnaces (Solanas/Getino)
  • An Andalusian Dog (Buñuel/Dali)
  • The Battle of Chile (Gúzman)
  • In the Mood for Love (Wong)
  • The Fiancés/i Fidanzati (Olmi)
  • Earth (Dovzhenko)
  • Distant/Uzak (Ceylan)
  • 30 The Last Chrisanthemum (Mizoguchi)
  • Ozu – a film by him
  • L’Avventura (Antonioni)
  • Potemkin (Eisenstein)
  • Mutum (Kogut)
  • A Film Unfinished (Hersonski)
  • The Man with the Movie Camera (Vertov)
  • Last Year at Marienbad (Resnais)
  • Flamenco/Tango/Fados Trilogy (Saura)
  • Rio Zona Norte or Vidas Secas some other film (dos Santos)
  • 40 Sunless (Marker)
  • Open City (Rossellini)
  • Repulsion (Polanski)
  • Stalker (Tarkovsky)
  • Nosferatu (Murnau)
  • Rashomon/Throne of Blood (Kurosawa)
  • Blood of a Poet (Cocteau)
  • Joan of Arc (Dreyer)
  • North by Northwest (Hitchcock)
  • The Powers of Ten (Eames)
  • 50 Red Psalm or some other film (Jancsó)

Competing very close (some could go back among the list of fifty) – again, no particular order: Chile, Obstinate Memory; Nostalgia for the Light (Guzmán); L’Ange (Bokanowski); Les Cartes Postales (Cahen); From Language to Language (Aviv); Voyages (Finkiel); Latcho Drom (Gatlif); Persona (Bergman); Os Fuzis (Guerra); Vidas Secas (dos Santos); Some Like It Hot (Wilder); Port of Shadows (Carné); Winged Migration (Cluzaud – Debats – Perrin); Children of Paradise (Carné); Portrait of Jason (Clarke); 79 Springs (Álvarez); Talk to Her (Almadóvar); Night of the Hunter (Laughton); Black Orpheus (Camus); Niagara (Hathaway); The Eclipse (Antonioni); The Society of the Spectacle (Debord); L’Enfant (Dardenne Bros); Into Great Silence (Gröning); Saló (Pasolini); The Double Life of Veronique (Kieslowski); Hiroshima mon Amour (Resnais); tonight’s headlines (Doron Solomons); The Act of Killing (Oppenheimer); Before the Rain (Manchevski); Jeanne Dielman (Akerman); AR (Kubelka); Butoh (Eiko and Koma); Fateless (Koltai); Black Is Black Ain’t… (Riggs); Der Lauf der Dinge (Fieschli and Weiss); Vukovar Poste Restante (Draskovic); Jacob’s Ladder (Lyne); The Violin (Vargas); The Story of Qui Jiu (Zhang); F for Fake (Welles);  Wavelength (Snow); Letter from Siberia (Marker); Peace (Soda); Ran/Ikiru (Kurozawa); After Life (Koreeda); Goodbye Dragon Inn (Tsai) …
ALSO worth mentioning, and, with a little time for reflection, could be moved up :
Jacob’s Ladder (Lyne), City of God (Meirelles), a great many Cinema Novo films like Vidas Secas, Black God/White Devil, Os Fuzis… Italian filmmakers like Antonioni, de Sica, Olmi… Japanese filmmakers like Ozu, Mizoguchi, Teshigahara, Koreeda, and others like Bruno Dumont (France), Jia Zhangke (China), Tsai Ming-liang (Taiwan), Roy Andersson (Sweden) …