Adam Piron

Director, Sundance Institute's Indigenous Program + Co-Founder, COUSIN

Voted for

The Colour of Pomegranates1968Sergei Paradjanov
Zodiac2007David Fincher
Goodbye, Dragon Inn2003Tsai Ming-liang
Killer of Sheep1977Charles Burnett
Meshes of the Afternoon1943Maya Deren, Alexander Hackenschmied
Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner2001Zacharias Kunuk
Close-up1989Abbas Kiarostami
Mulholland Dr.2001David Lynch
Kiss Me Deadly1955Robert Aldrich
Vertigo1958Alfred Hitchcock


The Colour of Pomegranates

1968 USSR, Armenian SSR

Few films have broken away from cinema's larger trajectory and formed a totally new branch of possibilities of the form as Parajanov's masterpiece did. It's a work that defiantly leans into its cultural perspective and the audience intended for it, and that has been a guidepost for so many others looking to create work that explores their own understanding of their cultures.


2007 USA

Fincher's chronicle of obsession, frustration and inconclusivity is far and away the director's magnum opus and the natural capstone to the many genres it's woven from.

Goodbye, Dragon Inn

2003 Taiwan

As prophetic and urgent as it is heartbreaking and reaffirming since its release. Tsai's film is *the* bridge from cinema's first century into the uncertainty of what's to come.

Killer of Sheep

1977 USA

The most-known film from the LA Rebellion has had an immeasurable legacy in terms of the creative possibilities it has opened for up BIPOC filmmakers since its restoration in 2007.

Meshes of the Afternoon

1943 USA

Maya Deren's landmark film provided a beacon for the possibilities for American filmmakers looking to work outside the Hollywood mainstream and remains a source of inspiration to everyone from experimental filmmakers to David Lynch.

Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner


Kunuk's film is a landmark in Indigenous cinema, and considered by many the best Canadian film of all time. Its formal approaches were unlike anything that came before it and provided a counter to cinema's early ethnographic and extractive practices towards Indigenous communities, such as those solidified by Robert Flaherty's Nanook of the North.


1989 Iran

Kiarostami's masterwork continues to defy categorisations nearly three decades on and remains just as powerful an experience, questioning everything from identity and the gaze to the very form of cinema it utilises.

Mulholland Dr.

2001 France, USA

Lynch's finest work.

Kiss Me Deadly

1955 USA

One of noir's finest entries and seminal to everything from the French New Wave to Tarantino. You're watching Aldrich break the very genre that he's working in by stepping on its gas and driving it into the wall.


1958 USA

Hitchcock's masterpiece has been sliced and analysed from nearly every formal and thematic angle it contains, but it remains the ultimate allegory for America's obsession with its own false image and the denial of what it was always built on. It's the directors most subversive and personal work and continues to inspire the spiral-like mania it portrays.

Further remarks

My selections overall were meant to reflect some of my own personal favourites, but they also hopefully intersect with and have been influential on cinema's overall history and trajectory in ways that I think might commonly be overlooked.