Lecturer, Communication Arts, Chulalongkorn University

Voted for

Meshes of the Afternoon1943Maya Deren, Alexander Hackenschmied
La Jetée1962Chris Marker
Black Girl1965Ousmane Sembène
Persona1966Ingmar Bergman
La Région Centrale1971Michael Snow
Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles1975Chantal Akerman
Three Colours Blue1993Krzysztof Kieslowski
SHARASOJYU2003Naomi Kawase
Tropical Malady2004Apichatpong Weerasethakul
A Lullaby to the Sorrowful Mystery 2016Lav Diaz


Black Girl

1965 Senegal, France

I think the reason that S&S invited me is because they want the poll to be inclusive. So, here, the masterpiece of the Global South. I love that the film is only 65 minutes. Its length is perfect for a film class (which in many countries is limite to only two to two-and-a-half hours per session). I usually show it to my students and the film always works.


1966 Sweden

I'm not sure which Bergman film should be nominated. I adore The Silence (1963) and Hour of the Wolf (1968). But I think Persona has had a greater impact on contemporary filmmakers.

La Région Centrale

1971 Canada

It's the cinema of the non-human.

Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles

1975 Belgium, France

It's her time.

Three Colours Blue

1993 France, Switzerland, Poland

My vote for this film represents the whole Kieślowski catalogue.


2003 Japan

I am curious as to why Kawase Naomi's early films are so underrated. Shara should has a reputation equal to Apichatpong Weerasethakul's Tropical Malady and Jia Zhangke's Still Life. I always think of these three filmmakers together because they were born within a year of one another and they all are masters of fiction/non-fiction hybridity.

Tropical Malady

2004 France, Thailand, Germany, Italy, Switzerland

It's difficult to choose one of Apichatpong Weerasethakul's films, because he never misses. All of his feature films are masterpieces. But Tropical Malady and Syndromes and a Century are his best. They are like Siamese twin, one dark and painful, the other bright and gentle. For this poll, I'm going for the painful one.

Further remarks

My list stands for multiple versions of cinema. In the first version, cinema exists as a cosmological network where humans meet spirits, magic, and non-humans (Deren, Kawase, Snow, Weerasethakul). In another version, cinema is a medium for rebellious voices, in particular from the Global South (Sembène, Diaz). In another , cinema is a forest of time (Marker, Akerman) and an island of illusion (Bergman). Last but not least, there will always be a place for the version of cinema that believes in the good will of humans (Kieslowski).

If I could add another two, I would vote for two films which reflect the possibility of digital cinema. One is Sleep Has Her House (2017) by Scott Barley. The other is Birth of the Seanema (2004) by Sasithorn Ariyavicha.