Film critic and programmer
|A Bitter Taste of Freedom
|Les Yeux sans visage
|OVOCE STROMU RAJSKYCH JIME
|OBRAZY STAREHO SVETA
|Portrait of a Lady on Fire
|Sansho the Bailiff
A Bitter Taste of Freedom
Russia's leading documentary director, Marina Goldovskaja, died in March shortly after the invasion of Ukraine.
Her tribute to the murdered journalist, Anna Politkovskaja, provides a fitting testament.
Svankmajer's best known animation marks a turning point in both the history of animation and the 'resurrection' of surrealism.
Les Yeux sans visage
Franju's classic horror film resonates on multiple levels.
OVOCE STROMU RAJSKYCH JIME
Best known for her iconoclastic 'Daisies', Chytilova's following film awaits a similar rediscovery. Check out, in particular, Jaroslav Kucera's remarkable images.
Vlacil's remarkable medieval epic has, I hope, finally reached an international audience via Blu-ray. Zdenek Liska's striking score is also available as a CD.
Top of my list, Tarkovsky's extraordinary reminiscence is unequalled - unique and irreplaceable.
OBRAZY STAREHO SVETA
Hanak's portrait of old people in rural Slovakia - a symphony of textures - is one of the great (if little seen) works of documentary cinema.
Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Perceptive and groundbreaking on so many levels, Sciamma's film is one of the most remarkable of recent movies.
Sansho the Bailiff
One of the most beautiful and moving of Mizoguchi's many classic films - should be high on anyone's list.
A classic of film animation and one of the few short animations to receive a book length study (by Clare Kitson).
His work has also been celebrated in a massive two-volume art publication (unfortunately only in Czech).
I would be happier with a top 100 (or maybe a top 60) as so many titles are interchangeable. However, the advantages of the poll is that it reveals so many little-known works of considerable value that pass under the radar of both commercial exposure and critical fashion. The era of Blu-ray has unearthed many hidden treasures that in my day could only be seen on 16mm - and even smaller gauges. Comparisons between the last poll and this should make interesting reading.
Interesting that the last poll revealed so many leading filmmakers making choices from what is conventionally termed 'art cinema'. An indication perhaps that there is world beyond mainstream drama. My own choices are made from films that continue to resonate and, in a sense, also 'go beyond'.