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ICM Forum's Favourite Directors 2019 [RESULTS!]

500<400, Favourite 1001 movies, Doubling the Canon, Film World Cup and many other votes
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St. Gloede
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Re: ICM Forum's Favourite Directors 2019 [RESULTS!]

#281

Post by St. Gloede » February 19th, 2020, 11:36 pm

PeacefulAnarchy wrote:
February 19th, 2020, 9:54 pm
#42 (⇩19, #23) Jean-Luc Godard (ICM) Points: 181.78 (26 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 1–4–5

History: 42232121211913←16
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Key Film: À bout de souffle (1960) [Breathless] – 27 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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Smoover (108)
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Obgeoff (233)
:facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm: :facepalm:

Francogeddon.

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#282

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 12:34 am

#40 (⇩9, #31) Kar-Wai Wong (ICM) Points: 184.95 (28 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 1–2–5

History: 40312553384143←22
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Key Film: Chung Hing sam lam (1994) [Chungking Express] – 17 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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#283

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 12:59 am

#39 (⇧4, #43) Sidney Lumet (ICM) Points: 187.67 (33 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 0–0–4

History: 39435335172528←27
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Key Film: 12 Angry Men (1957) – 28 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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Jimi Antiloop (190)

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#284

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 1:26 am

#38 (⇩17, #21) Buster Keaton (ICM) Points: 187.97 (33 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 0–0–0

History: 38211814182419←21
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Key Film: The General (1926) – 32 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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#285

Post by cinewest » February 20th, 2020, 1:52 am

St. Gloede wrote:
February 19th, 2020, 9:51 pm
Antonioni I dropped 25 spots and still crushed Fellini ...
Antonioni is the one Italian filmmaker I appreciate as much or more than Fellini, if only because I feel more affinity with his films

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#286

Post by cinewest » February 20th, 2020, 2:04 am

I notice that solid craftsmen directors like Lumet always do very well in these polls...

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#287

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 2:04 am

#37 (⇩1, #36) Satyajit Ray (ICM) Points: 188.97 (27 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 0–3–7

History: 37364643555446←40
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Key Film: Pather Panchali (1955) [Song of the Little Road] – 21 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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#288

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 2:34 am

cinewest wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 2:04 am
I notice that solid craftsmen directors like Lumet always do very well in these polls...
Who else? Wyler, Forman, Ridley Scott, Curtiz, maybe Huston and De Sica? Can't think of others so far in the top 100.

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#289

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 3:19 am

#36 (⇩19, #17) Robert Bresson (ICM) Points: 189.14 (25 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 0–1–4

History: 36172413314427←42
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Key Film: Un condamné à mort s'est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut (1956) [A Man Escaped] – 17 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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#290

Post by blocho » February 20th, 2020, 5:07 am

Well, that's it. We can't deny what's happening anymore. This poll is the worst thing to happen to France since the 1356 Battle of Poitiers.

And I, for one, can no longer hide my responsibility. For years, I've been plotting a Francophobic campaign that has, at various times, involved Gerard Depardieu moving to Russia so he could avoid French taxes, the 36-year drought for French men at Roland Garros, and the ongoing travails at the Academie Francaise. And after doing so much to hurt French tennis, French language nerds, and French masculinity, I set my sights on random internet forum polls about movie directors.

I recognize now that my efforts have caused collateral damage to innocent moviemakers. I promise my anti-French campaign ends today, and I will make amends by reading all 20 novels in Zola's Rougon-Macquart series in one sitting.

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#291

Post by fori » February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am

I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!

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#292

Post by Smoover » February 20th, 2020, 7:54 am

So Melville will beat the whole Nouvelle Vague? :D

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#293

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 7:57 am

#35 (⇧20, #55) David Fincher (ICM) Points: 189.26 (27 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 0–1–4

History: 35555965354945←58
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Key Film: Se7en (1995) – 23 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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Perception de Ambiguity (68)
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#294

Post by tobias » February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am

fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.

And within Europe France is simply by far the most relevant country in terms of cinematic output. I have watched more french films in my life than German and Danish films combined and I don't speak any French (while German and Danish are my native languages). The french government film funding is 4 times as high as Germany's, though Germany's GDP is roughly 50 % higher than France's. France is also absolutely insane in international productions. Many people may not realize this but Mulholland Drive is a French production, The Pianist is French, Chimes of Midnight is French, Dunkirk is French. France has been one of the most welcoming countries to foreign directors. Similarly Filmmaking in France has been some of the most innovative and expansive for over a century by now from Melies to Feuilade to Gance to Renoir to Bresson to the New Wave and beyond all some of the most inventive filmmakers of their generation, with even the US struggling to keep up.

Maybe this is all down to personal preference but among the last directors revealed I find the French directors much more consistently interesting than the Asians and North Americans and also other Europeans who made it this far, yes, even Truffaut. I mean who have we rising for the french falling? Haneke, Nolan, Wyler, Capra, Lumet, Fincher, not excactly the most boundary pushing directors.

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#295

Post by tobias » February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am

Smoover wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 7:54 am
So Melville will beat the whole Nouvelle Vague? :D
Rohmer-Bros unite!

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#296

Post by brokenface » February 20th, 2020, 8:12 am

tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am
fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.
Antarctica will rise!

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#297

Post by tobias » February 20th, 2020, 8:21 am

brokenface wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:12 am
tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am
fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.
Antarctica will rise!
I agree, woefully underrated. All hail the great penguin filmmakers :worship:

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#298

Post by Onderhond » February 20th, 2020, 8:44 am

cinewest wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 2:04 am
solid craftsmen directors
If that's a sneaky diss ... I love it B)

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#299

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 9:02 am

#34 (⇧17, #51) David Lean (ICM) Points: 189.77 (30 Votes)
Top 1–5–10: 1–2–3

History: 34514030465141←52
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Key Film: Lawrence of Arabia (1962) – 40 Official Lists, also on IMdb
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#300

Post by fori » February 20th, 2020, 9:04 am

:letbxd:
tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am
fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.

And within Europe France is simply by far the most relevant country in terms of cinematic output. I have watched more french films in my life than German and Danish films combined and I don't speak any French (while German and Danish are my native languages). The french government film funding is 4 times as high as Germany's, though Germany's GDP is roughly 50 % higher than France's. France is also absolutely insane in international productions. Many people may not realize this but Mulholland Drive is a French production, The Pianist is French, Chimes of Midnight is French, Dunkirk is French. France has been one of the most welcoming countries to foreign directors. Similarly Filmmaking in France has been some of the most innovative and expansive for over a century by now from Melies to Feuilade to Gance to Renoir to Bresson to the New Wave and beyond all some of the most inventive filmmakers of their generation, with even the US struggling to keep up.

Maybe this is all down to personal preference but among the last directors revealed I find the French directors much more consistently interesting than the Asians and North Americans and also other Europeans who made it this far, yes, even Truffaut. I mean who have we rising for the french falling? Haneke, Nolan, Wyler, Capra, Lumet, Fincher, not excactly the most boundary pushing directors.
Can’t agree less, France is completely irrelevant and they haven’t had a good director come up in decades. It’s great they have put so much effort into international productions for so long, but the industry has long ago atrophied, and it seems like all the money in domestic film there is in conceptually bankrupt dramas selling Frenchness to wine mums. And yet there are still endless French directors filling the halls of the pantheon, it is easily one of the most venerated film traditions in the world, and even today when that lineage is completely dead they still manage to have as many films in the small pool of “best of the year” arthouse films every year as countries bursting at the seams with new talent. Your post is so telling as well. The “Asians” active today are an incredibly diverse group of filmmakers far larger and more varied than the entirety of French cinema, and it’s not even close. Far from “zero fucks given” Eurocentrism in film communities is still the norm, and people like you are functionally complaining that cinema working outside of the English language + Europe is finally getting a fraction of the credit it deserves.
And Germany is WAY better too.

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#301

Post by Teproc » February 20th, 2020, 9:18 am

I sure hope Asia as a whole produces more interesting directors than France, given that it is a billion* times more populous.

*more like 50 times but you get the point

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#302

Post by cinephage » February 20th, 2020, 9:24 am

tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:21 am
brokenface wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:12 am
tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am


Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.
Antarctica will rise!
I agree, woefully underrated. All hail the great penguin filmmakers :worship:
I feel I need to mention here that the best movie about penguins is La marche de l'empereur, another movie directed by a french director...

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#303

Post by cinewest » February 20th, 2020, 10:07 am

fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Couldn't disagree more. France has produced more great films (not just by French directors) than any other nation besides the United States, and it's not even close, and Europe has produced an incredibly rich diversity of films throughout film history, more-so than any other continent in my estimation.

Other continents (including Antarctica I am told), are definitely on the rise, though, especially Asia (very popular on this board) and Latin America, which gets very little love from participants here.

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#304

Post by fori » February 20th, 2020, 10:14 am

cinewest wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 10:07 am
fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Couldn't disagree more. France has produced more great films (not just by French directors) than any other nation besides the United States, and it's not even close, and Europe has produced an incredibly rich diversity of films throughout film history, more-so than any other continent in my estimation.
“France has produced more great films than any other nation”
Disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree disagree. This is basically the consensus amongst older film buffs though.

“Europe has more diversity & quality than any other film continent”
Debatable (though I may ultimately agree) but completely congruent with my point anyway.

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#305

Post by Onderhond » February 20th, 2020, 10:28 am

I think it's hard to ignore the impact of French cinema, both in the past as well as nowadays. With directors like Noé, Dupieux or Jeunet and by leading the European horror wave of the 00s they've still proven themselves relevant.

But overall quality is just personal opinions. I would probably rank France Top 4-7 in a countries top, but that's going to be very different for every individual.

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#306

Post by tobias » February 20th, 2020, 10:59 am

fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 9:04 am
:letbxd:
tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am
fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 6:44 am
I for one think it’s a good thing. France is and always has been incredibly overrated in cinéaste circles, and we need to move on. Not to say there aren’t great filmmakers from France (there are many) but the Francophile reverence needs to be wound back a bit. Perhaps it’ll make a bit more room for Germany, Poland, Hungary, Spain and Greece in Europe, but more importantly the rest of the world! The film community needs to be less Eurocentric!
Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.

And within Europe France is simply by far the most relevant country in terms of cinematic output. I have watched more french films in my life than German and Danish films combined and I don't speak any French (while German and Danish are my native languages). The french government film funding is 4 times as high as Germany's, though Germany's GDP is roughly 50 % higher than France's. France is also absolutely insane in international productions. Many people may not realize this but Mulholland Drive is a French production, The Pianist is French, Chimes of Midnight is French, Dunkirk is French. France has been one of the most welcoming countries to foreign directors. Similarly Filmmaking in France has been some of the most innovative and expansive for over a century by now from Melies to Feuilade to Gance to Renoir to Bresson to the New Wave and beyond all some of the most inventive filmmakers of their generation, with even the US struggling to keep up.

Maybe this is all down to personal preference but among the last directors revealed I find the French directors much more consistently interesting than the Asians and North Americans and also other Europeans who made it this far, yes, even Truffaut. I mean who have we rising for the french falling? Haneke, Nolan, Wyler, Capra, Lumet, Fincher, not excactly the most boundary pushing directors.
Can’t agree less, France is completely irrelevant and they haven’t had a good director come up in decades. It’s great they have put so much effort into international productions for so long, but the industry has long ago atrophied, and it seems like all the money in domestic film there is in conceptually bankrupt dramas selling Frenchness to wine mums. And yet there are still endless French directors filling the halls of the pantheon, it is easily one of the most venerated film traditions in the world, and even today when that lineage is completely dead they still manage to have as many films in the small pool of “best of the year” arthouse films every year as countries bursting at the seams with new talent. Your post is so telling as well. The “Asians” active today are an incredibly diverse group of filmmakers far larger and more varied than the entirety of French cinema, and it’s not even close. Far from “zero fucks given” Eurocentrism in film communities is still the norm, and people like you are functionally complaining that cinema working outside of the English language + Europe is finally getting a fraction of the credit it deserves.
And Germany is WAY better too.
I think you misread a sentence in my post: "Maybe this is all down to personal preference but among the last directors revealed I find the French directors much more consistently interesting than the Asians and North Americans and also other Europeans who made it this far". I'm talking within the confines of this poll. Most of the Asians are even incredibly inspired by Europeans. Wong Kar-Wai's entire shtick is imo a pale imitation of the New Wave, I'd much rather he's be exchanged with Zhangke. Ray started out as an assistant to Jean Renoir. etc.

The Asians who made the top 100 so far are:
#99 Shion Sono - to be fair, I'm very excited to check out his work, I've been trying to convince my brother to watch Love Exposure with me for years
#95 Hirokazu Koreeda - Afterlife is great but otherwise he seems like a fairly stringent narrative director, I don't really get behind the Shoplifers hype, still one of the more exciting ones
#91 Mikio Naruse - Love what I've seen
#86 Asghar Farhadi - Very stringent narrative cinema, good at that but ultimately a weak representation for what Iran actually has to offer
#82 Chan-wook Park - Again not the strongest representation of South Korea's national cinema, nice genre cinema but nothing revolutionary, a lot of the french directors who made it here make more challenging genre cinema, Godard, Malle or Carné par example
#69 -Yimou Zhang - his debut was great and unique but he's been going donwhill ever since.
#49 Abbas Kiarostami - Formally challenging and poetically potent, the first Asian director on this top 100 list to break with western conventions at all (maybe aside from Sono, I don't know)
#45 Kenji Mizoguchi - my favourite Asian director, can't complain. Mizoguchi was actually himself an influence on the french new wave.
#40 Kar-Wai Wong - the best description I've ever read on him is this: "I just wish Kar-wai's stylistic tics (including his writing) didn't seem so adolescent to me. He's kind of like Antonioni without any of the restraint, patience or insight", It's a faux-impression of the Nouvelle Vague with almost nothing to say of its own.
#37 Satyajit Ray - Very potent director on his own premises but seeing him above Renoir is a bit alienating.

The list will probably be rounded off by the evergreens Ozu and Kurosawa. So no Zhangke, no Makhmalbaf, no Tsai, no Oshima, no Ceylan, etc. Can you really blame me for finding Rivette, Renoir, Bresson, Godard, Rohmer, Varda, Denis, etc. more interesting than the above selection of Asian directors? Would you really dispute that the french directors who made it this far challenge established conventions less than the Asians who made it this far? The same is true to an even bigger extend for the Americans btw. This is not a poll about the here and now but about cinematic history at large. I know that a lot of stuff is Currently going on in Asia but this poll isn't based exclusively on the last 5-10 years or something when admittedly France didn't have its strongest decade.

As for Germany being better than France please, please recommend me films and directors. In my estimation this wasn't the case since the Weimar Republic. I'm actually a big fan of German cinema and always glad to learn more. It just so happens that the most interesting German titles I currently find is usually either late Weimar stuff or the more underground titles within Neuer Deutscher Film. I recently discovered Käutner which was a huge revelation but he's an absolutely unique oddity.

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#307

Post by cinewest » February 20th, 2020, 11:07 am

It might also be noted that Koreeda, Farhadi, and Kiarostami have all recently made films in France, and filmmakers like Haneke and Kieslowski both worked out of France, in addition to many other "foreign" filmmakers of note (Ruiz, Noe, Bunuel, Schnabel, Polanski, Hou Hsiao-hsien, etc.)

As for home grown contemporary French filmmakers of note, I once made a pretty long list, but here are a few:

Leo Carax
Jean-Claude Jeunet
Jacques Audiard
Claire Denis
Kechiche, Abdellatif
Desplechin, Arnaud
Assayas, Olivier
Guiraudie, Alain
Laurent Cantet
Garrel, Philippe
Sissako, Abderrahmane
Beauvois, Xavier
Jaoui, Agnès
Hadzihalilovic, Lucile
Sciamma, Céline
Bruno Dumont
Ozon, François
Hansen-Løve, Mia
Bonello, Bertrand
Etc. Etc. Etc.
Last edited by cinewest on February 20th, 2020, 11:31 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#308

Post by Onderhond » February 20th, 2020, 11:30 am

France has a strong connection with Asian directors. Ki-duk, Hou and Tsai also traveled there. The latest Jianqi Huo is also partially shot in France.
It must also be noted though that these films often represent poorer entries in the oeuvres of said directors.

Don't quite agree on Koreeda being a stringent narrative director, though his most popular films fall in that category. That has more to do with what the (arthouse) West expects from foreign cinema though. Drama, poverty and complaining about your country will get you noticed (hence why I'm surprised Jia didn't make the list).

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#309

Post by Teproc » February 20th, 2020, 11:57 am

Onderhond wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 11:30 am
Don't quite agree on Koreeda being a stringent narrative director, though his most popular films fall in that category. That has more to do with what the (arthouse) West expects from foreign cinema though. Drama, poverty and complaining about your country will get you noticed (hence why I'm surprised Jia didn't make the list).
I guess you could apply that to Shoplifters (incredibly reductive but w/ever), but not really to some other Koreeda dramas like Our Little Sister or Still Walking, which are not about poverty or complaining about their country.

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#310

Post by Onderhond » February 20th, 2020, 12:21 pm

Our Little Sister and Still Walking are respectable films, but hardly some of his more popular ones I believe. I was thinking mostly Shoplisters and Nobody Knows.
I do remember there being quite a lot of complaining in Still Walking though, one of the main reasons why I preferred Our Little Sister.

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#311

Post by sebby » February 20th, 2020, 12:28 pm

As long as Rohmer moves up I could care less about the rank of the rest of these french auteurs.

S. Ray is still not ranked highly enough. At least 7 or 8 masterpieces. Should be top 10 or close to it.

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#312

Post by fori » February 20th, 2020, 1:14 pm

tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 10:59 am
fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 9:04 am
:letbxd:
tobias wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 8:04 am


Well in terms of fucks given Europe is already third behind North America and Asia today. The other 4 continents have much, much less resources for filmmaking.

And within Europe France is simply by far the most relevant country in terms of cinematic output. I have watched more french films in my life than German and Danish films combined and I don't speak any French (while German and Danish are my native languages). The french government film funding is 4 times as high as Germany's, though Germany's GDP is roughly 50 % higher than France's. France is also absolutely insane in international productions. Many people may not realize this but Mulholland Drive is a French production, The Pianist is French, Chimes of Midnight is French, Dunkirk is French. France has been one of the most welcoming countries to foreign directors. Similarly Filmmaking in France has been some of the most innovative and expansive for over a century by now from Melies to Feuilade to Gance to Renoir to Bresson to the New Wave and beyond all some of the most inventive filmmakers of their generation, with even the US struggling to keep up.

Maybe this is all down to personal preference but among the last directors revealed I find the French directors much more consistently interesting than the Asians and North Americans and also other Europeans who made it this far, yes, even Truffaut. I mean who have we rising for the french falling? Haneke, Nolan, Wyler, Capra, Lumet, Fincher, not excactly the most boundary pushing directors.
Can’t agree less, France is completely irrelevant and they haven’t had a good director come up in decades. It’s great they have put so much effort into international productions for so long, but the industry has long ago atrophied, and it seems like all the money in domestic film there is in conceptually bankrupt dramas selling Frenchness to wine mums. And yet there are still endless French directors filling the halls of the pantheon, it is easily one of the most venerated film traditions in the world, and even today when that lineage is completely dead they still manage to have as many films in the small pool of “best of the year” arthouse films every year as countries bursting at the seams with new talent. Your post is so telling as well. The “Asians” active today are an incredibly diverse group of filmmakers far larger and more varied than the entirety of French cinema, and it’s not even close. Far from “zero fucks given” Eurocentrism in film communities is still the norm, and people like you are functionally complaining that cinema working outside of the English language + Europe is finally getting a fraction of the credit it deserves.
And Germany is WAY better too.
I think you misread a sentence in my post: "Maybe this is all down to personal preference but among the last directors revealed I find the French directors much more consistently interesting than the Asians and North Americans and also other Europeans who made it this far". I'm talking within the confines of this poll. Most of the Asians are even incredibly inspired by Europeans. Wong Kar-Wai's entire shtick is imo a pale imitation of the New Wave, I'd much rather he's be exchanged with Zhangke. Ray started out as an assistant to Jean Renoir. etc.

The Asians who made the top 100 so far are:
#99 Shion Sono - to be fair, I'm very excited to check out his work, I've been trying to convince my brother to watch Love Exposure with me for years
#95 Hirokazu Koreeda - Afterlife is great but otherwise he seems like a fairly stringent narrative director, I don't really get behind the Shoplifers hype, still one of the more exciting ones
#91 Mikio Naruse - Love what I've seen
#86 Asghar Farhadi - Very stringent narrative cinema, good at that but ultimately a weak representation for what Iran actually has to offer
#82 Chan-wook Park - Again not the strongest representation of South Korea's national cinema, nice genre cinema but nothing revolutionary, a lot of the french directors who made it here make more challenging genre cinema, Godard, Malle or Carné par example
#69 -Yimou Zhang - his debut was great and unique but he's been going donwhill ever since.
#49 Abbas Kiarostami - Formally challenging and poetically potent, the first Asian director on this top 100 list to break with western conventions at all (maybe aside from Sono, I don't know)
#45 Kenji Mizoguchi - my favourite Asian director, can't complain. Mizoguchi was actually himself an influence on the french new wave.
#40 Kar-Wai Wong - the best description I've ever read on him is this: "I just wish Kar-wai's stylistic tics (including his writing) didn't seem so adolescent to me. He's kind of like Antonioni without any of the restraint, patience or insight", It's a faux-impression of the Nouvelle Vague with almost nothing to say of its own.
#37 Satyajit Ray - Very potent director on his own premises but seeing him above Renoir is a bit alienating.

The list will probably be rounded off by the evergreens Ozu and Kurosawa. So no Zhangke, no Makhmalbaf, no Tsai, no Oshima, no Ceylan, etc. Can you really blame me for finding Rivette, Renoir, Bresson, Godard, Rohmer, Varda, Denis, etc. more interesting than the above selection of Asian directors? Would you really dispute that the french directors who made it this far challenge established conventions less than the Asians who made it this far? The same is true to an even bigger extend for the Americans btw. This is not a poll about the here and now but about cinematic history at large. I know that a lot of stuff is Currently going on in Asia but this poll isn't based exclusively on the last 5-10 years or something when admittedly France didn't have its strongest decade.

As for Germany being better than France please, please recommend me films and directors. In my estimation this wasn't the case since the Weimar Republic. I'm actually a big fan of German cinema and always glad to learn more. It just so happens that the most interesting German titles I currently find is usually either late Weimar stuff or the more underground titles within Neuer Deutscher Film. I recently discovered Käutner which was a huge revelation but he's an absolutely unique oddity.
Whoopsie i didn’t read that properly. I was drunk tonight sorry! I take that back then (I do disagree with some of the individual assessments though!!) For German directors, my highest recommendation is anyone and everyone associated with New German Cinema, the greatest film movement ever. If you’re unfamiliar, here are but a few to start you off:
You probably know
Werner Herzog
Wim Wenders
Rainer Werner Fassbinder
Volker Schlondorff
Wolfgang Peterson
—————
You might not know
Ulrike Ottinger
Hans-Jurgen Syberberg
Straub & Huillet
Alexander Kluge
Harun Farocki
Margarethe Von Trotta
Helma Sanders-Brahms
Peter Fleischmann
Daniel Schmid
Wolf Gremm
Edgar Reitz

& so many others!! I can’t remember any more neue welle figures right now without looking through lists/whatever, but the crew of people involved in a more broadly defined idea of “New German Cinema” is stunningly diverse and accomplished. If you are familiar with all these please say so, there are quite a few less well known classics I can recommend.

I should dive back into German cinema, because ice been slacking there and it’s probably a top 2 country for film in my opinion, and it’s not just the New German Cinema stuff either, there are masters from every era.
Last edited by fori on February 20th, 2020, 1:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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#313

Post by St. Gloede » February 20th, 2020, 1:16 pm

Re: Germany vs. France
Re: France vs. All Other Countries

France is the only country, outside of the US, to consistently be in the limelight as a top tier  cinematic nation since the beginning of cinematic history. The only other country that can compete is Japan, but they do not have any kind of extensive line-up until the 30s, in part due to lost films. (Another nation that has been consistently on the map is the UK, but in a much, much lesser degree).

This is not really a question of individual taste, but about the reality of production and acclaim.

There have been plenty of times when other countries can be said to have competed with France or beaten them - Weimar era Germany being one, but this is always for a limited period of time. 

Looking at Germany, in particular, we see two periods of cinematic success: 

1. The Weimer Era (1918-1933) - Ended by the Nazis and the filmmaker exodus

2. New German Cinema (primarily a 70s phenomenon but stretches from the 60s to the early 80s) - Ended by filmmaker exodus, Fassbinder's death and lack of funding, and of course the German New Wave was directly influenced by the French New Wave.

We can also list the Berlin School period, which can be said to have started in the mid-90s and still be ongoing, but it has not had as great a reach - luckily for them, France has not been at its best during this period.

When we compare Germany and France we need to take their entire history into account and thanks to nazi propaganda, the filmmaker exodus and losing WW2 German cinema from 1934 to the early 60s is almost a black hole. A few pearls, a few names, Kautner, Staudte, etc. but they have the scale of a small, irrelevant European country, not that of a titan.

France struggled with cinema during the German occupation, but they still made more films that are remembered as important classics than Germany in this period. Most notably Le Corbeau and Children of Paradis, and after the occupation, they quickly jumped back to the previous levels of acclaim, before leading the way with the French New Wave, inspiring the revolution in cinema across not just Europe, but the world.

Now, we can discuss a bias among arthouses and critics, which has kept allowing France to keep a status of headlining festivals and critic lists year in and year out - but if we look at the 70s, 80s and 90s, i.e. the post-New Wave decades we see that there was no filmmaker exodus and that the New Wave Giants kept getting respect and topping lists with their new/refined styles - while new filmmakers joining their ranks, from Techine to Assayas, and later Noe, Jeunet, etc. and keeping the boat steady and afloat, if only at a slightly lower level.

Today we might see that other countries outdo them, and especially during the 00s we could point to Iran, South Korea, etc. but this competition is dying down and France stood through all of it as a top contender.

If we look at what films top the end of the year lists from the last decade (and this would be an interesting study) I suspect we will still see France in the top 3, and very little implies that this will change anytime soon.

And again, this is largely playing into a potential basis of bias among distributors, programmers and critics but if we look at the best-regarded films from almost any decade, we can be pretty sure France will be in the top 5 across the board.

Unless we are focusing on specific periods, i.e. recent cinema, that type of reach/acclaim is impossible to beat. It is just too consistent and too powerful. Their contribution to cinema tops all others (except US).

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#314

Post by PeacefulAnarchy » February 20th, 2020, 1:17 pm

#33 (⇧5, #38) Howard Hawks (ICM) Points: 191.79 (34 Votes)
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#315

Post by cinephage » February 20th, 2020, 1:31 pm

fori wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 1:14 pm
Straub & Huillet
French directors, both of them... :thumbsup:

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Post by St. Gloede » February 20th, 2020, 1:35 pm

To be fair, the largest quantity of their films (though likely not the majority) was made in Germany.

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#317

Post by fori » February 20th, 2020, 1:52 pm

And obviously they came up as core members of New German Cinema, and their most acclaimed is largely in German. Silly to even try to make that point really.

I don’t want to engage in interminable arguments with a brigade of francophiles, so this’ll be my last word here. I completely agree that France has had many important filmmakers and movements and is indisputably one of the most important nations in film history. However, due to a mixture of many things including elitist cultural biases, the influence of French theorists on film discourse, strong correlation between francophilic sentiments and film engagement in many English speaking countries etc etc etc, so many other things, France gets way too much credit. Still one of the greatest nations for film, just not a top 5 contender. I think it’s a good thing if some francophone movies get purged from the canon and make space for previously neglected areas.

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#318

Post by cinephage » February 20th, 2020, 2:02 pm

St. Gloede wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 1:35 pm
To be fair, the largest quantity of their films (though likely not the majority) was made in Germany.
Indeed, but they shot many films in France and in Italy too... And they were very close to most members of the french Nouvelle Vague, Straub was a assistant to Rivette on one of his short film. They went to Germany because Straub didn't want to fight for France in Algeria during his military service, but mostly lived in Italy.

Most of their key films were shot in germany, that's for sure. But I would definitely not consider them as german directors, especially since they made so many appearances on the french scene, with critics or directors...

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#319

Post by Obgeoff » February 20th, 2020, 2:18 pm

I'm trying to figure out a criteria where France wouldn't rank as one of the Top 5 countries for cinema. I'm struggling to think of one though.
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Post by OldAle1 » February 20th, 2020, 2:21 pm

Obgeoff wrote:
February 20th, 2020, 2:18 pm
I'm trying to figure out a criteria where France wouldn't rank as one of the Top 5 countries for cinema. I'm struggling to think of one though.
Personal taste. I can't imagine any other.

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