Richard Brody

Movies editor, Goings On About Town section, the New Yorker

US

Voted in the critics’ poll

Voted for

Gertrud

1964

Carl Theodor Dreyer

Great Dictator, The

1940

Charles Chaplin

Husbands

1970

John Cassavetes

Journey to Italy

1954

Roberto Rossellini

King Lear

1987

Jean-Luc Godard

Last Laugh, The

1924

F. W. Murnau

Marnie

1964

Alfred Hitchcock

Playtime

1967

Jacques Tati

Règle du jeu, La

1939

Jean Renoir

Shoah

1985

Claude Lanzmann

Comments

Trying to get past the conundrum of balancing love and analysis, of taking into account personal passion, historical importance and aesthetic assessment, I landed on the word ‘awe’ to line up movies in terms of what both defines the cinema as an art and what launches it into an orbit akin to that of the other arts. But that word came afterwards; I had no hesitation about eight out of ten, and that criterion helped me out of my final jam. And yet, it seems arbitrary and Procrustean and leaves me full of regret over what’s left out.

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