Sunday, May 17, 2009

Director Film Counts in the Critics 1000

Directors with the most films in the critics top 1000.

Top Ten:
1. John Ford (18)
2. Fritz Lang (16)
3. Luis Bunuel (15)
4. Alfred Hitchcock (14)
5-6. Ingmar Bergman (13), Jean-Luc Godard (13)
7. Federico Fellini (12)
8-10. Howard Hawks (11), Stanley Kubrick (11), Akira Kurosawa (11)

10 each: Chaplin, Mizoguchi, J.Renoir
9 each: Scorsese, Visconti, Powell (9 total, 7 w Pressburger)
8 each: Allen, Altman, Bresson, Huston, Rossellini, von Sternberg, Welles, Wilder
7 each: Bertolucci, Cassavetes, Kieslowski, Lubitsch, Lynch, Ophuls, Ozu, Peckinpah, Rohmer, Powell & Pressburger, Spielberg, Tarkovsky, Trauffaut

Most films in the top 200:  Buñuel (7), Ford (6), Kubrick (6)
5 each: Bergman, Hitchcock
4 each: Chaplin, Coppola, Dreyer, Godard, Hawks, Kurosawa, Powell & Pressburger, Scorsese, Welles, Wilder
3 each: Antonioni, Bresson, Eisenstein, Murnau, S. Ray, Renoir, Rossellini, Spielberg, Preston Sturges, Tarkovsky, Visconti

Alphabetical List, four or more films
Total films in the top 1000, those 86 with 4+, represents 561 films.
Followed by total in the top 200, then the [highest ranked film]

Allen (8) – 2 [#113: Manhattan]
Almodovar (4) [#635: All About My Mother]
Altman (8) – 2 [#67: Nashville]
Antonioni (6) – 3 [#38: L’avventura]
Bergman (13) – 5 [#40: Persona]
Bertolucci (7) – 1 [#65: The Conformist, photo right]
Bresson (8) – 3 [#61: Au hasard Balthazar]
Buñuel (15) – 7 [#68: Viridiana]
Capra (6) – 2 [#45: It’s a Wonderful Life]
Cassavetes (7) – 1 [#156: A Woman Under the Influence]
Chaplin (10) – 4 [#23: City Lights]
Clair (4) [#275: Le Million]
Cocteau, Jean (4) [#196: La Belle et la bête]
Coen Bros (5) [#288: Fargo]
Coppola (5) – 4 [#6: The Godfather]
Cukor (5) – 1 [#142: The Philadelphia Story]
De Sica (4) – 2 [#14: The Bicycle Thief]
Demy, Jacques (4) [#248: The Umbrellas of Cherbourg]
Donen (4) w Kelly (2:] – 1 [#11: Singin’ in the Rain]
Dreyer (5) – 4 [#17: The Passion of Joan d’Arc]
Eisenstein (6) – 3 [#8: Battleship Potemkin]
Fassbinder (6) – 1 [#186: Ali-Fear Grips the Soul]
Fellini (12) – 5 [#5: 8 ½]
Flaherty, Rob't (4) [#210: Nanook of the North]
Ford (18) – 6 [#7: The Searchers]
Forman (4) – 1 [#131: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, photo rt]
Godard (13) – 4 [#33: Breathless]
Griffith (5) – 3 [#51: Intolerance]
Hawks (11) – 4 [#63: Rio Bravo]
Herzog (5) – 1 [#91: Aguirre-The Wrath of God]
Hitchcock (14) – 5 [#2: Vertigo]
Hou Hsiao-Hsien (4) [#287: The Time to Live and the Time to Die]
Huston, J (8) – 2 [#111: The Treasure of the Sierra Madre]
Kazan (6) – 1 [#104: On the Waterfront]
Keaton (7) – 2 [#30: The General]
Kiarostami (6) – 1 [#191: Close-Up]
Kieslowski (7) – 1 [#132: Dekalog]
Kubrick (11) – 6 [#4: 2001-A Space Odyssey]
Kurosawa (11) – 4 [#9: Seven Samurai, photo right]
Lang, F (16) – 2 [#53: M]
Lean (6) – 2 [#13: Lawrence of Arabia]
Lubitsch (7) – 2 [#71: To Be or Not To Be]
Lumet (4) [#283: Network]
Lynch (7) – 1 [#107: Blue Velvet]
Mankiewicz (4) – 1 [#72: All About Eve]
Mann, A (4) [#589: Man of the West]
McCarey (4) – 1 [#103: Duck Soup]
Melville, Jean-P (6) [#280: Le Samourai]
Minnelli (5) – 1 [#157: The Band Wagon]
Mizoguchi (10) – 2 [#54: Ugetsu Monogatari]
Murnau, F.W. (6) – 3 [#12: Sunrise]
Ophüls, Max (7) – 2 [#77: Letter From an Unknown Woman]
Ozu, Yasujiro (7) – 2 [#10: Tokyo Story]
Pabst (4) – 1 [#189: Pandora’s Box]
Pasolini (5) – 1 [#159: Gospel According to St. Matthew, photo rt]
Peckinpah (7) – 1 [#158: The Wild Bunch]
Polanski (5) – 1 [#36: Chinatown]
Powell & Pressburger (7) – 4 [#126: A Matter of Life and Death]
Ray, Nicholas (6) [#241: Johnny Guitar]
Ray, Satyajit (6) – 3 [#59: Pather Panchali]
Renoir, Jean (10) – 3 [#3: The Rules of the Game]
Resnais (6) – 2 [#89: Last Year at Marienbad]
Rivette, Jacques (4) – 1 [#181: Celine and Julie Go Boating]
Roeg, Nicolas (4) – 2 [#136: Don’t Look Now]
Rohmer, Eric (7) [#278: My Night at Maud’s]
Rossellini (8) – 3 [#86: Voyage in Italy]
Scorsese (9) – 4 [#18: Raging Bull]
Scott, Ridley (4) – 1 [#46: Blade Runner]
Sirk (6) – 1 [#199: Written on the Wind]
Spielberg (7) – 3 [#106: Jaws]
Sturges, Preston (5) – 3 [#114: The Lady Eve]
Tarkovsky (7) – 3 [#41: Andrei Rublev]
Tourneur, Jacques (4) [#117: Out of the Past, photo right]
Truffaut (7) – 2 [#42: Jules et Jim]
Vidor, King (6) – 1 [#178: The Crowd]
Visconti (9) – 3 [#66: The Leopard]
von Sternberg, Josef (8) [#255: Blue Angel]
von Stroheim, Erich (4) – 1 [#64: Greed]
Weir (4) [#526: Picnic at Hanging Rock]
Welles (8) – 4 [#1: Citizen Kane]
Wenders (4) [#247: Wings of Desire]
Wilder (8) – 4 [#22: Some Like it Hot]
Wong Kar-Wai (5) [#328: Chungking Express]
Wyler (5) – 1 [#122: The Best Years of Our Lives]

- Those with 2+ in the top 200 that didn't make the list above -
Leone (3) – 3 [#73: Once Upon a Time in the West] - only 3 but all in top 200
Malick (2) – 2 [#164: Days of Heaven]

Those with 3: Paul Thomas Anderson, Theo Angelopoulos, Luis García Berlanga, John Boorman, James Cameron, Marcel Carné, Chen Kaige, David Cronenberg, Michael Curtiz, Brian De Palma, Clint Eastwood, Jim Jarmusch, Humphrey Jennings, Jerry Lewis, Joseph Losey, Terrence Malick, Louis Malle, Albert & David Maysles, Nikita Mikhalkov, Arthur Penn, Otto Preminger, Vsevolod Pudovkin, Carol Reed, Rob Reiner, Glauber Rocha, George Stevens, Jean-Marie Straub, Jacques Tati, Andrzej Wajda, Raoul Walsh, Robert Wise, Zhang Yimou, Fred Zinnemann

Surprises
John Cassavetes with 7, has more films in the top 1000 than Kazan (6), Lean (6). Coppola (5), Wyler (5), Dreyer (5), Wong Kar-Wai (5), Preston Sturges (5), Polanski (5), Pasolini (5), Herzog (5), Minnelli (5), Jacques Tourneur (4). He doesn’t have that many great films does he, aren’t most about average at best?

William Wyler, with 13 best director and 12 best picture nominations only has 5 in the top 1000, and his greatest (Best Years of Our Lives) is only #122. This should be an all-time top 10 film, perhaps the finest anti-war film ever made.

Billy Wilder, with such original classics as Sunset Boulevard (photo right), Stalag 17, Double Indemnity, and The Apartment, has his light gender-bending comedy Some Like It Hot at #22 just outplace Boulevard (#29) as his highest ranked film; for me it’s about 4th of his.

Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner at #46. Not bad SciFi but ahead of E.T., Close Encounters, The Empire Strikes Back, Aliens, even another and better Philip K. Dick story in Minority Report? It has about 5 minutes of actual futuristic footage, then reverts into a typical detective action film: let’s hunt down and kill the androids/killers one at a time. Well done but hardly a top 50 all-time.

Woody Allen’s admittedly good Manhattan (photo left) outranking best picture winner Annie Hall, and the more complex and rewarding Hannah and Her Sisters. Together, a formidable trilogy, but the seamless weaving together of multiple family stories in Hannah directly inspired Ron Howard’s Parenthood, and a host of copycats.

Where are Coppola’s Tucker: A Man and His Dream and Peggie Sue Got Married? To include Godfather III over these takes an offer someone couldn’t refuse, or perhaps listing the Godfathers together as a trilogy.

Elia Kazan’s top film, On the Waterfront, is only 104th, when imitator Sergio Leone has one higher (73rd, the overblown Once Upon a Time in the West)? ..what are people looking at?

Surrealist Luis Bunuel has 15 in the top 1000, but 7 (and most) in the top 200? He admits to not shooting with a script, and just letting the cameras capture the film that he creates later with editing. Gee, how could you ever tell, as many of his films seem entertaining but pointless overall, especially Un Chien Andelou, perhaps ranked due to Dali’s participation? (it must be art if the guy who once set a stuffed giraffe on fire in a museum was involved.)

My Favorite Ten:
1-Kubrick, 2-Coppola, 3-Wilder, 4-Wyler, 5-Spielberg, 6-Scorsese, 7-Yimou, 8-Lean, 9-Kazan, 10-Bertolucci, John Huston(tie) Just out: Coen Bros., John Ford, Woody Allen, Herzog, Lang, Antonioni, Tornatore, Wong Kar-Wai, Carol Reed, Weir, Welles, Wertmuller Stanley Kubrick for sheer number of top 20 caliber films, same as Coppola, who had more mistakes having done more films. Wilder and Wyler are perhaps the most consistant. Doing just 10 is tough. For me, Welles didn't do enough great films, just a couple, Kane and Ambersons. Same with Ford - Informer and Mister Roberts are my faves.

[*Subject to change at a moment's notice]

3 comments:

Fraser Orr said...

"John Cassavetes with 7 ... He doesn’t have that many great films does he, aren’t most about average at best?"

Hmm...is my sarcasm meter broken or are you being serious?

Watch Husbands, Woman Under the Influence and Faces, preferably in that order. His films defy most conventions and are seen as "muddled" by some mainstream critics who miss the point completely, but if you're looking for challenging, soul-deepening cinema, you can't go past his work.

Jose Sinclair said...

I have seen all these, and about 5 others.. Woman was impressive, largely due to Gena Rowlands performance..

I just cannot ever see him having more films listed than William Wyler, whose films got over 130 Oscar nominations - Cassavetes should have 3-5 listed, Wyler about 10..

Most Cassavetes films suffer from the "improvised" look to me, scenes run too long, not much happens.. "soul-searching" itself doesn't make a film - silent films did that too, you could tell from the exaggerated faces!

and Bergman - nothing but soul-ridden angst - maybe good art but painful watching, esp. Cries and Whispers (my ex-wife still berates me for taking her to that one!)

Cassavetes is an artist for sure, I was mainly talking about his numbers vs better directors, like Wyler, Yimou, Zinnemann, Kazan, Wong Kar-Wai..

Bunuel improvised most of his, and he's THIRD on the director point total list - that's too high also I think - same thing: 2-3 great films, a dozen barely watchable ones.. some make me leave the room for awhile..

Ford and Hitchcock have too many also - they aren't ALL that good.. even Jerry Lewis had three! Nutty Professor maybe, but no others..

we all have favorite directors if we see enough films..!

I'll have to admit, I usually stick with a Cassavetes film - hey, wasn't Minnie and Moscowitz his? that one I loved for some reason.. they missed it on the list! Two I haven't seen: Love Streams and Shadows... I'll have to see those now..

thanks for comments! -- JOSE

Fraser Orr said...

Funnily enough, Minnie and Moskowitz was one of Cassavetes least favourite of his own films. He thought it was too much of an "entertainment" picture. Ah, those crazy artists. I'd recommend reading "The Films of John Cassavetes" by Ray Carney. It'll make you want to watch all his movies again to see what you were missing!

I've also written a little piece on the "They Shoot Movies" list you might be interested in:
http://notfilmschool.com/?p=33