Marcel Štefančič, jr

Film critic, Mladina magazine, Ljubljana

Slovenia

Voted in the critics’ poll

Voted for

Blade Runner

1982

Ridley Scott

Casablanca

1942

Michael Curtiz

Fires on the Plain

1959

Kon Ichikawa

Godfather: Part I, The

1972

Francis Ford Coppola

Good, the Bad and the Ugly, The

1966

Sergio Leone

Jetée, La

1962

Chris Marker

Man with a Movie Camera

1929

Dziga Vertov

Psycho

1960

Alfred Hitchcock

Reservoir Dogs

1991

Quentin Tarantino

Wild Bunch, The

1969

Sam Peckinpah

Comments

Well, I was sitting there – shortshortshortshortlisting. Should I go with Man With a Movie Camera or Battleship Potemkin (or maybe Happiness)? I went with Man With a Movie Camera. I recently saw it at Dokufest in Prizren, Kosovo, in the cinema – called River without Name, which is literally in the river – and I must say, the film still flows. Should I go with Casablanca or The Third Man (or maybe Detour)? I went with Casablanca. Here, all is said and done by people who were born to say and do precisely that. Should I go with Psycho or Persona (or maybe Flaming Creatures)? I went with Psycho. It still has a future. Should I go with Fires on the Plain or Seven Samurai (or maybe Ugetsu)? I went with Fires on the Plain. With this film the (old) world ended in 1959. (A new one started via Psycho and Breathless – and they were both based on movies, not on the ‘real world’). Should I go with La Jétee or La Règle du jeu (or maybe Alphaville)? I went with La Jétee. The thing that happened to that boy happens to me – and I guess to everybody – each time I watch movies (yeah, flicks are funerals, not festivities). Should I go with The Good, the Bad and the Ugly or Paisan (or maybe La dolce vita)? I went with The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. It’s the only film that could go on forever (without losing a reason for going on forever). Should I go with The Wild Bunch or The Searchers (or High Noon)? I went with The Wild Bunch. I saw it in 1971, just before I hit 11, in Logatec, a small town in Slovenia with a cinema and nothing else. What were the chances that I would not take it with me wherever I went? Should I go with The Godfather or Nashville (or maybe Chinatown)? I went with The Godfather. I could go with Nashville or Chinatown, but the sequels to those two were so bad. Should I go with Blade Runner or Metropolis (or 2001: A Space Odyssey)? I went with Blade Runner. No apologies: Metropolis and 2001: A Space Odyssey are only dreaming that they’re Blade Runner. And finally, should I go with Reservoir Dogs or No Country for Old Men (or Oldboy)? I went with Reservoir Dogs. Tarantino was a hope: was there ever a better defender of the idea that film history is not a failed project? Oh, and the whole idea of debating movies – and shortlisting them – while killing and dying and realising that your survival depends on the number of films you’ve seen? Doesn’t Reservoir Dogs – a film about the shortlisting of film history – exactly prove how painful and deadly the shortlisting of film history can be? But alas, when I came to the end of my shortlisting of film history, I realised that I had lost Citizen Kane, even though I’m willing to admit that Citizen Kane is the ‘greatest film ever’ for obvious reasons: Citizen Kane is the only film that fits the genre of ‘the greatest film ever’ – the only film that was made to be ‘the greatest film ever’ and that was marketed and publicised as such, because it was, as we well know, the only way for Orson Welles and his film to survive the onslaught of the offended William Randolph Hearst’s publishing empire.

Latest from the BFI

  • Latest from the BFI

    Latest news, features and opinion.

More information

Films, TV and people

  • Films, TV and people

    Film lists and highlights from BFI Player.

More information

Sight & Sound magazine

  • Sight & Sound magazine

    Reviews, interviews and features from the international film magazine.

More information

Back to the top