Ruth Harley

CEO, Screen Australia

New Zeland/Australia

Voted in the critics’ poll

Voted for



Federico Fellini

Angel at My Table, An


Jane Campion

Apocalypse Now


Francis Ford Coppola

Godfather: Part II, The


Francis Ford Coppola

Hurt Locker


Kathryn Bigelow

Lawrence of Arabia


David Lean

Murmur of the Heart


Louis Malle


Wayne Blair

Star Wars


George Lucas



Deepa Mehta


My choices are of films that immediately came to mind when I thought of this task. Some crowded into my memory by replaying the visceral response that the film first induced, such as the stomach-knotting intensity of The Hurt Locker or Apocalypse Now. Others, like An Angel at my Table, swept into my visual memory. Still more create snapshot memories that are expressions of the extraordinary tangle and diversity of humanity, like Water, Amarcord and even the bar scene from the original Star Wars film. Portrait of the artist movies are very often films that stay with me as extraordinary insights into extraordinary minds, as with writer Janet Frame in An Angel at my Table and David Helfgott in Shine. I also love the expansive feelings created by movies that are about music and musicians – hence Shine and the surprise (for me) choice of Mama Mia. And then there are those films that take you places you never thought you would go, like the incredibly transgressively Murmur of the Heart.

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