|Sergei M. Eisenstein
|Djibril Diop Mambéty
|Vittorio De Sica
|Aguirre, Wrath of God
|The Battle of Algiers
|Roma città aperta
|ULTIMO TANGO A PARIGI
|Fires on the Plain
I've often felt that, of the two, Touch of Evil was the better film; however, for that innovative, self-conscious artistry exploring ambition and failure, I settle for Kane.
…especially, that Odessa step sequence from the master of montage – a revolutionary revelation of what cinema could be…
That most beautiful of cinema love scenes: the hand holding passionately to the motorcycle handlebar as the waves crash erotically, orgasmically against the rocks – and for that avant-garde punk-rock feel…
One of cinema's most powerful scenes is the whipping scene in Moolaade – in Xala, too, there is that scene where society's outcasts gather to spit on the politician; but I nominate this movie, for its importance to cinema in Africa, and also for its marriage of political commentary with Imperfect Cinema.
De Sica makes the camera and the screen disappear and shows you reality humanely, tenderly – but I've never found the courage to see this film a second time: that last scene with the boy crying breaks your heart.
Aguirre, Wrath of God
I had programmed this as the last film in the Goethe-Institut Lagos's Herzog retrospective. As the night deepened, in the absence of the Institut's director, the programme officer kept coming to whisper in my ear to end the film. What – stop Kinski halfway? Way out in the front, I thought the silence behind me meant the audience had left. But, no: Ines' chilling, silent walk into the dark forest to whatever fate had rendered them silent – and there's that final moment when Aguirre holds his dying daughter with the camera swirling overhead...
The Battle of Algiers
…afterwards, you realise you're not watching newsreel photography but staged reality – I took offence when an American researcher into Nollywood, that international academic moniker for the Nigerian movie industry, referenced this film in connection with the sectarian terror group in Nigeria's desert fringe: I mean, what has the struggle of the FLN got to do with Boko Haram?
Roma città aperta
…the terrible beauty of Italian neo-realist cinema…
ULTIMO TANGO A PARIGI
…Brando… simply the best…
Fires on the Plain
The fear of what humanity could become – do they still make films like this?
…but… of course… great films are necessarily absent from this list: Casablanca; Apocalypse Now; Nosferatu; The Godfather…