Peter Matthews


Voted for

Tokyo Story1953Yasujirō Ozu
Greed1923Erich von Stroheim
Diary of a Country Priest1951Robert Bresson
Intolerance1916D.W. Griffith
Ivan the Terrible1945Sergei M. Eisenstein
Vertigo1958Alfred Hitchcock
Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles1975Chantal Akerman
All That Heaven Allows1955Douglas Sirk
Die BITTEREN TRÄNEN DER PETRA VON KANT1972Rainer Werner Fassbinder
The Big Trail1930Raoul Walsh


Is it significant that my list stops in 1975 (with Akerman’s supremely unnerving Jeanne Dielman)? Probably. On another day, I might well have included Tsai Ming-liang’s Goodbye, Dragon Inn (2003) or Albert Serra’s The Death of Louis XIV (2016), two slow cinema masterpieces. Richard Linklater’s miraculous Before Sunset (2004) would be right up there too. But essentially, and however indefensibly, I can’t help feeling that cinema is done. Most of the films I’ve chosen have accompanied me for the best part of a lifetime. A couple (such as Walsh’s The Big Trail, with its awesomely creative use of early widescreen) are new discoveries. I sheepishly admit to having so far avoided Jacques Rivette’s vast, intimidating Out 1: Noli Me Tangere (1971), a likely candidate for the next poll, if I’m still breathing then.