Bill Gosden

Director, New Zealand International Film Festival

New Zealand

Voted in the critics’ poll

Voted for

Beau Travail

1998

Claire Denis

Brighter Summer Day, A

1991

Edward Yang

Man with a Movie Camera

1929

Dziga Vertov

McCabe and Mrs Miller

1971

Robert Altman

Mirror

1974

Andrei Tarkovsky

My Neighbour Totoro

1988

Miyazaki Hayao

North by Northwest

1959

Alfred Hitchcock

Pajama Game, The

1957

George Abbott/Stanley Donen

Sherlock Jr

1924

Buster Keaton

Shoah

1985

Claude Lanzmann

Comments

As I enter my 59th winter, my list represents nothing more expert than a survey of some personal beacons. If I were invited to name my greatest filmmakers, the list might make my path look quite different (farewell Bob Fosse, hello Hou Hsiao-hsien.) These are ten of the films that left me feeling decidedly more experienced after our first encounter and have continued to excite me in substantially different ways on return visits. The Pajama Game (an ignominious 6.9 on imdb.com) is the only survivor from boyhood, when it was actually the much baggier Americana of The Music Man (7.6) that turned my little Kiwi head. The Altman – the least formally considered of my ten, but in its raggedness just as fully realised as any of them – was first met at 17. I loved it right off, but at the time it was The Last Picture Show that struck me as overwhelmingly adult and important. So it goes. It was never just about the movie.

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