Marc Munden

Miranda; The Mark of Cain


Voted in the directors’ poll

Voted for



Abbas Kiarostami

Headless Woman, The


Lucrecia Martel



Michael Haneke

In The Mood For Love


Wong Kar Wai

Once Upon a Time in Anatolia


Nuri Bilge Ceylan



Todd Haynes

Son, The


Jean-Pierre Dardenne/Luc Dardenne

There Will Be Blood


Paul Thomas Anderson

Time Out


Laurent Cantet

Werckmeister Harmonies, The


Béla Tarr


I want to put forward some late-20th/early-21st century masterpieces – a case for the continuing persistence of surprising, breathtaking and challenging cinema. Are any of these films as great as those of the geniuses I’ve left out: Scorsese, Bergman, Fellini, Bunuel, Kubrick, Godard, Tarkovsky? Who knows, but today they feel just as vital and relevant. It’s heartbreaking to exclude all those masters. My more traditional list would include: Sweet Smell of Success; L’Atalante; Cries and Whispers; Viridiana; Spirit of the Beehive; Les Vacances de M. Hulot; The Godfather Part II; Taxi Driver; Blue Velvet; Fargo.

I’m not sure whether L’Emploi du Temps is prescient of the 21st century or a summing-up of the 20th. Le Fils offers pure elegance in its storytelling. Every aspect of Haneke’s storytelling is magisterial, down to the tiniest technical detail. The shot of Majid’s son outside the school, meeting the Laurent boy, is a masterclass in itself. I’ve included Safe for all of us lost searchers and The Headless Woman because it’s so beautifully mysterious.

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