|Francis Ford Coppola
|Céline and Julie Go Boating
|Au hasard Balthazar
|Where Is the Friend's House?
|Paul Thomas Anderson
If I could pack "Late Spring," "Tokyo Story," and "Ohayo" into one No. 1 spot, I would, but "Spring" is the one I keep coming back to, as it seems to hover so closely to the rhythms and regrets of ordinary lfe.
The greatest classical narrative in cinema history, standing Janus-like between the studio era and the modern age.
Céline and Julie Go Boating
An endlessly enjoyable (and structurally endless) comic essay on female friendship, storytelling, Paris in summer, and the hazy line between fiction and reality.
Au hasard Balthazar
The greatest religious film ever made? A Christian passion play as told through the life of a donkey in postwar France. Unbearably moving no matter no matter your spiritual persuasion.
A great director and chronic voyeur (redundancy? discuss) comes clean about the costs of voyeurism on both the gazer and the gazed upon. The rare movie that works as theory and practice; also, it's heartbreaking.
The rare comedy that works as both theory and practice; also, it's hilarious. An anomaly -- too long for a short, too short for a feature, but what's there is perfection.
Where Is the Friend's House?
A boy returns some homework to a classmate; that's it, that's all, but it's everything. A parable about human kindness -- its difficulty, resilience, necessity -- in a harsh world.
Too soon? Then why does this epic romance between two beautiful, horrible people get better -- richer, funnier, sadder -- with repeat viewings? Couture filmmaking from multiple artists at the top of their games, it's going to age like a vintage Mouton Rothschild.
A movie about a scandalous temptress everyone wants and an actual woman nobody sees, told in a breathtaking fractal kaleidoscope of flashbacks.
A bifurcated masterpiece about the no-(wo)man's-land between dream and waking life and how the movies in general and Hollywood in particular suck us into the darkness.