Remove ads, unlock a dark mode theme, and get other perks by upgrading your account. Experience the website the way it's meant to be.

The Chorus Canon

Discussion in 'Entertainment Forum' started by OhTheWater, Jan 1, 2021.

  1. OhTheWater

    Let it run Supporter

    A place for the Entertainment Forum regulars to list their definitive “canon” - films that they deem essential or important for every cinema fan. I’d prefer for the thread to not turn into rankings, but more a living document of important films and the order in which they should/could be watched. Feel free to edit or update lists as you watch more films that you deem “essential”. If you want to break it down into multiple lists, feel free to do genre or time periods (SOV Horror, French New Wave, 2010 Films etc.).
    aoftbsten and Contender like this.
  2. OhTheWater

    Let it run Supporter

    No footwear talk allowed
    cherrywaves, aoftbsten, Brent and 4 others like this.
  3. phaynes12

    playing in the band Supporter

    leave the sandals talk out

  4. OhTheWater

    Let it run Supporter

    It’d cool to see this thread turn into a primer for directors as well. For instance, Out of the Blue, Days of Heaven, and Streetwise would definitely fit in a Harmony Korine list
    riotspray likes this.
  5. Nathan

    Always do the right thing. Supporter

    This is gonna take awhile
  6. Meerkat

    Trusted Prestigious

    Not sure if I’m a regular at this point but might throw together a list of essential movies about queer women if that’s cool
  7. OhTheWater

    Let it run Supporter

    Idk why I used "regulars". It can be anyone!
    riotspray, CarpetElf and Meerkat like this.
  8. phaynes12

    playing in the band Supporter

    way to go nick
    coleslawed and imthesheriff like this.
  9. Nathan Jan 2, 2021
    (Last edited: Jan 3, 2021)

    Always do the right thing. Supporter

    I enjoyed doing this today. Luckily I've had a couple friends ask me for a sort of, guided film school type list, where they asked me to put together films they should see to get more out of cinema as a medium, so going from there and working with my up to date list of personal favorites, it was relatively simple to combine them into a personal canon that, pulling from the films I've seen, I'd want to preserve and share.

    The first disclaimer I have to make is that, as is the case with most people, I have blind spots. Horror as a genre is something I never delved into as much as others growing up, so I'm behind on many of the best works in that genre. While I have always tried to see stuff that's been canonized, I just haven't seen everything so my list is by default incomplete.

    Hand in hand with that, my collection comes overwhelmingly from directors, casts, and crews who are straight, white, cisgender, and male. Part of that is the inherent history of the industry/growing up in the United States, part of that is that I didn't really think consciously about seeing films from more diverse filmmakers until around the early 2010s. It's a flaw in my selections.

    Finally, there are directors cited and members of casts and crews who have done heinous things in their lives. Directors, actors, and writers who have abused, manipulated, and harmed others, usually women, and who were largely allowed to continue doing so because of the status, privilege, and power that the film industry allowed them to accumulate. It is wrong, and I wondered how best to address films that had an undeniable impact on the world/myself, or I feel are important, but that came from those who should have been held accountable for the things they did in the moment but, unfortunately, were not. I decided to largely include their films, not as an erasure of what they did, but to acknowledge the work itself as important for its cultural moment and cinema legacy, and to also include as complete a history of cinema as possible, which, unfortunately, includes abuses of power and people. I think any conversation about a film that is cinematically important should include a conversation about those abuses as well, to assess how the filmmakers and the film industry failed morally. It shouldn't be ignored, but a sanitized version of cinema history is a failing of its own.

    I'll include brief explanations for why films are grouped how they are. I decided on a couple large groups, some with sub-groups. The four large groups are:
    1. Obvious Classics/Film School Curriculum
    2. By Country
    3. By Genre
    4. Important Auteurs

    There's overlap between groups and categories, and there are a million ways a canon can be organized, but I feel like the way I did it allows a decent starting collection, plus a guided way to follow-up (if, say, Rashomon resonates with someone looking at the Obvious Classics/Film School Essentials list, they can follow it up in the Japanese section of By Country and see more Kurosawa, plus his contemporaries in Japan. Or, if 2001: A Space Odyssey resonates with someone in that group, they can find more Kubrick in the Important Auteurs group)

    I decided not to repeat films, so when, say, Vertigo is included in the first group, I didn't include it again in the Alfred Hitchcock section of the Important Auteurs group. Seven Samurai is in the first group, but not included in the Japan section of the By Country group. I tried to mostly put a film in a group where it made sense. Some films are tied more to their auteur than their genre, some are tied to their reputation more than anything, so I mostly tried to keep groupings in line with the prominent reason I included it.

    Films were included and excluded based on reputation, yes, but also a personal feelings. I included films that significantly expanded, deepened, or revolutionized what cinema means to me. I included films that speak to a fundamental human truth or experience in a way I feel is uniquely insightful or potent. A lot of canonized films have that effect, which is why they have the legacies they do, but letting my personal feelings be a significant factor allows the list to feel more personal. Why compile a list if I'm trying to be objective? You can Google lists like that and get plenty of lists of mostly the same films (though I definitely included a lot of films you'd find on those lists). This is also not quite a list of my personal favorite films, either. Some of my favorite films, I recognize, probably wouldn't speak the same to someone else, or aren't cinematically equipped enough to stand amongst the best work in the medium. There are also films I wouldn't include in my personal favorites, some films that I recognize quality in from a filmmaking perspective, but whose larger message I personally disagree with, potentially even arguing a message I think is objectively harmful. I tried to keep selections like that to a minimum, but felt like attempting to reflect a canon of cinema honestly did require the inclusion of some, say, Saving Private Ryan or The Birth of a Nation.

    This is a significantly lacking canon, which is inherent if one person is trying to compile a list like this. It's not an attempt to represent the whole spectrum of human experience told in cinema, or every kind of movie ever made. I hope it can be supplemented and improved upon by further entries in the thread.

    Anyway, here are my selections. I capped myself at 450 films for now.

    Group 1: Obvious Classics/Film School Essentials
    50 Films
    The first group I made was stuff that was obviously significant either because of its place in cinema history, as something that has developed a deserved reputation for being "important", or it's included in most film school curriculums. These are foundational works, works that inspired or were significant parts of historic cinematic movements, works whose fingerprints are all over everything we see today. Films listed chronologically.

    Monkeyshines, No. 1 dir. William K.L. Dickson, William Heise (1890)
    The Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat dir. Auguste Lumiere, Louis Lumiere (1896)
    A Trip to the Moon dir. Georges Melies (1902)
    The Birth of a Nation dir. D.W. Griffith (1915)
    Intolerance: Love's Struggle Throughout the Ages dir. D.W. Griffith (1916)
    Destiny dir. Fritz Lang (1921)
    The Kid dir. Charlie Chaplin (1921)
    Metropolis dir. Fritz Lang (1921)
    Nanook of the North dir. Robert J. Flaherty (1922)
    Nosferatu dir. F.W. Murnau (1922)
    Safety Last! dir. Fred C. Newmeyer, Sam Taylor (1923)
    The General dir. Buster Keaton, Clyde Bruckman (1926)
    Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans dir. F.W. Murnau (1927)
    The Passion of Joan of Arc dir. Carl Theodor Dreyer (1928)
    Un Chien Andalou dir. Luis Buñuel (1929)
    L'Age d'Or dir. Luis Buñuel (1930)
    M dir. Fritz Lang (1931)
    Freaks dir. Tod Browning (1932)
    Modern Times dir. Charlie Chaplin (1936)
    La Grande Illusion dir. Jean Renoir (1937)
    Stagecoach dir. John Ford (1939)
    Citizen Kane dir. Orson Welles (1941)
    Casablanca dir. Michael Curitz (1942)
    Black Narcissus dir. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger (1947)
    Bicycle Thieves dir. Vittorio De Seca (1948)
    The Red Shoes dir. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger (1948)
    Rashomon dir. Akira Kurosawa (1950)
    Singin’ in the Rain dir. Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly (1952)
    On the Waterfront dir. Elia Kazan (1954)
    Seven Samurai dir. Akira Kurosawa (1954)
    The Searchers dir. John Ford (1956)
    The Seventh Seal dir. Ingmar Bergman (1957)
    12 Angry Men dir. Sidney Lumet (1957)
    Vertigo dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1958)
    The 400 Blows dir. Francois Truffaut (1959)
    Breathless dir. Jean-Luc Godard (1960)
    La Dolce Vita dir. Federico Fellini (1960)
    8 ½ dir. Frederico Fellini (1963)
    A Fistful of Dollars dir. Sergio Leone (1964)
    The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly dir. Sergio Leone (1966)
    Persona dir. Ingmar Bergman (1966)
    The Graduate dir. Mike Nichols (1967)
    2001: A Space Odyssey dir. Stanley Kubrick (1968)
    The Godfather dir. Francis Ford Coppola (1972)
    Solaris dir. Andrei Tarkovsky (1972)
    The Godfather Pt. II dir. Francis Ford Coppola (1974)
    Jaws dir. Steven Spielberg (1975)
    Taxi Driver dir. Martin Scorsese (1976)
    Apocalypse Now dir. Francis Ford Coppola (1979)
    Do the Right Thing dir. Spike Lee (1989)

    By Country
    142 Films
    This section includes subcategories of films specified by country of origin. It is not complete or exhaustive, again I'm pulling from the limited selection of stuff I've personally seen. There are films with esteemed reputations that I haven't seen, so I won't include for now. It's also a limited selection of countries: I've seen a lot of cinema from the United States, obviously, and enough to feel fairly comfortable compiling decent starting lists for Japan, the United Kingdom, and France. Some other countries, like India and South Korea, are also represented, but after that my limitations in the world cinema I've seen start to show. I opted against including a country like Taiwan, where I've seen the works of Edward Yang and some Tsai Ming-liang, among maybe a couple others, but feel like outside of those directors I'm not qualified to canonize the little else I've seen. This is probably where my list will be weakest. I debated organizing by movements: German Expressionism, the French New Wave, Italian Neo-Realism, etc, but looking at chronological lists of my selections and their origin countries, I feel comfortable grouping it by country, especially since narrowing it down by country and that country's film movement sometimes encroaches on other categories. Films grouped by country and listed chronologically.

    The Rules of the Game dir. Jean Renoir (1939)
    Shoot the Piano Player dir. Francois Truffaut (1960)
    A Woman Is a Woman dir. Jean-Luc Godard (1961)
    Cleo from 5 to 7 dir. Agnes Varda (1962)
    Jules and Jim dir. Francois Truffaut (1962)
    Contempt dir. Jean-Luc Godard (1963)
    Band of Outsiders dir. Jean-Luc Godard (1964)
    The Soft Skin dir. Francois Truffaut (1964)
    The Umbrellas of Cherbourg dir. Jacques Demy (1964)
    Le Bonheur dir. Agnes Varda (1965)
    Au Hasard Balthazar dir. Robert Bresson (1966)
    Pierrot le Fou dir. Jean-Luc Godard (1966)
    Two or Three Things I Know About Her dir. Jean-Luc Godard (1967)
    The Young Girls of Rochefort dir. Jacques Demy (1967)
    Day for Night dir. Francois Truffaut (1973)
    The Last Metro dir. Francois Truffaut (1980)
    Sans Soleil dir. Chris Marker (1983)
    Beau Travail dir. Claire Denis (1999)
    35 Shots of Rum dir. Claire Denis (2008)
    Holy Motors dir. Leos Carax (2012)
    Girlhood dir. Celine Sciamma (2014)
    Portrait of a Lady on Fire dir. Celine Sciamma (2019)

    Neecha Nagar dir. Chetan Anand (1946)
    Awaara dir. Raj Kapoor (1951)
    Pather Panchali dir. Satyajit Ray (1955)
    Aparajito dir. Satyajit Ray (1956)
    The World of Apu dir. Satyajit Ray (1959)
    The Big City dir. Satyajit Ray (1963)
    Pratidwandi dir. Satyajit Ray (1970)

    Osaka Elegy dir. Kenji Mizoguchi (1936)
    Women of the Night dir. Kenji Mizoguchi (1948)
    Late Spring dir. Yasujiro Ozu (1949)
    Ikiru dir. Akira Kurosawa (1952)
    The Life of Oharu dir. Kenji Mizoguchi (1952)
    Tokyo Story dir. Yasujiro Ozu (1953)
    Ugetsu dir. Kenji Mizoguchi (1953)
    Godzilla dir. Ishiro Honda (1954)
    Samurai I: Musashi Miyamoto dir. Hiroshi Inagaki (1954)
    Throne of Blood dir. Akira Kurosawa (1957)
    Tokyo Twilight dir. Yasujiro Ozu (1957)
    Good Morning dir. Yasujiro Ozu (1959)
    Yojimbo dir. Akira Kurosawa (1961)
    High and Low dir. Akira Kurosawa (1963)
    Death by Hanging dir. Nagisa Oshima (1968)
    Lady Snowblood dir. Toshiya Fujita (1973)
    The Ballad of Narayama dir. Shohei Imamura (1983)
    Black Rain dir. Shohei Imamura (1989)
    Battle Royale dir. Kenji Fukasaku (2000)

    South Korea
    The Housemaid dir. Kim Ki-young (1960)
    Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance dir. Park Chan-wook (2002)
    Memories of Murder dir. Bong Joon-ho (2003)
    Oldboy dir. Park Chan-wook (2003)
    The Host dir. Bong Joon-ho (2006)
    The Handmaiden dir. Park Chan-wook (2016)
    Train to Busan dir. Yeon Sang-ho (2016)
    Burning dir. Chang-dong Lee (2018)
    Parasite dir. Bong Joon-ho (2019)

    United Kingdom
    The Lady Vanishes dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1938)
    The 39 Steps dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1939)
    The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp dir. Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger (1943)
    Brief Encounter dir. David Lean (1945)
    The Third Man dir. Carol Reed (1949)
    Peeping Tom dir. Michael Powell (1960)
    Goldfinger dir. Guy Hamilton (1964)
    Women in Love dir. Ken Russell (1969)
    A Clockwork Orange dir. Stanley Kubrick (1971)
    Monty Python and the Holy Grail dir. Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones (1975)
    Naked dir. Mike Leigh (1993)
    Welcome II the Terrordome dir. Ngozi Onwurah (1995)
    Secrets & Lies dir. Mike Leigh (1996)
    Topsy-Turvy dir. Mike Leigh (1999)
    Casino Royale dir. Martin Campbell (2006)

    United States
    Within Our Gates dir. Oscar Micheaux (1920)
    City Lights dir. Charlie Chaplin (1931)
    Black Legion dir. Archie Mayo, Michael Curitz (1937)
    Angels with Dirty Faces dir. Michael Curitz (1938)
    Holiday dir. George Cukor (1938)
    Gunga Din dir. George Stevens (1939)
    Mr. Smith Goes to Washington dir. Frank Capra (1939)
    Only Angels Have Wings dir. Howard Hawks (1939)
    The Great Dictator dir. Charlie Chaplin (1940)
    The Philadelphia Story dir. George Cukor (1940)
    The Lost Weekend dir. Billy Wilder (1945)
    It's a Wonderful Life dir. Frank Capra (1946)
    All About Eve dir. Joseph L. Mankiewicz (1950)
    A Streetcar Named Desire dir. Elia Kazan (1951)
    Gentlemen Prefer Blondes dir. Howard Hawks (1953)
    Breakfast at Tiffany's dir. Blake Edwards (1961)
    West Side Story dir. Robert Wise, Jerome Robbins (1961)
    Easy Rider dir. Dennis Hopper (1969)
    The Last Picture Show dir. Peter Bogdanovich (1971)
    Dog Day Afternoon dir. Sidney Lumet (1975)
    Nashville dir. Robert Altman (1975)
    All the President's Men dir. Alan J. Pakula (1976)
    Rocky dir. John G. Avildsen (1976)
    Blue Collar dir. Paul Schrader (1978)
    Killer of Sheep dir. Charles Burnett (1978)
    Raging Bull dir. Martin Scorsese (1980)
    Blow Out dir. Brian De Palma (1981)
    Smithereens dir. Susan Seidelman (1982)
    Paris, Texas dir. Wim Wenders (1984)
    Broadcast News dir. James L. Brooks (1987)
    They Live dir. John Carpenter (1988)
    Goodfellas dir. Martin Scorsese (1990)
    King of New York dir. Abel Ferrara (1990)
    Heat dir. Michael Mann (1995)
    Friday dir. F. Gary Gray (1995)
    Safe dir. Todd Haynes (1995)
    Titanic dir. James Cameron (1997)
    Saving Private Ryan dir. Steven Spielberg (1998)
    Ocean's Eleven dir. Steven Soderbergh (2001)
    Jackass: The Movie dir. Jeff Tremaine (2002)
    Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy dir. Adam McKay (2004)
    Zodiac dir. David Fincher (2007)
    Avatar dir. James Cameron (2009)
    The Social Network dir. David Fincher (2010)
    Margaret dir. Kenneth Lonergan (2011)
    Weekend dir. Andrew Haigh (2011)
    An Oversimplification of Her Beauty dir. Terence Nance (2012)
    Frances Ha dir. Noah Baumbach (2012)
    Spring Breakers dir. Harmony Korine (2012)
    Her dir. Spike Jonze (2013)
    Fruitvale Station dir. Ryan Coogler (2013)
    Under the Skin dir. Jonathan Glazer (2013)
    Selma dir. Ava DuVernay (2014)
    Carol dir. Todd Haynes (2015)
    Magic Mike XXL dir. Gregory Jacobs (2015)
    Manchester by the Sea dir. Kenneth Lonergan (2016)
    Moonlight dir. Barry Jenkins (2016)
    Little Women dir. Greta Gerwig (2019)
    First Cow dir. Kelly Reichardt (2020)
    Never Rarely Sometimes Always dir. Eliza Hittman (2020)

    Non-American Films
    These are non-American films that I feel should be seen, but come from countries where I haven't seen enough to be able to list much more beyond them.
    Daisies dir. Vera Chytilova (1966)
    Last Tango in Paris dir. Bernardo Bertolucci (1972)
    Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles dir. Chantal Akerman (1975)
    A Dry White Season dir. Euzhan Palcy (1989)
    Rebels of the Neon God dir. Tsai Ming-liang (1992)
    Chungking Express dir. Wong Kar-wai (1994)
    In the Mood for Love dir. Wong Kar-wai (2000)
    The Wind that Shakes the Barley dir. Ken Loach (2006)
    An Elephant Sitting Still dir. Hu Bo (2018)
    Atantics dir. Mati Diop (2019)

    By Genre
    148 Films
    Genre is a way to track the popular films of different eras of film throughout history, from the Western, Noir, and Screwball Comedies of the 30s-60s, to the Neo Noirs that followed and into Science Fiction/Fantasy/Superhero blockbusters that dominate today. When so much is invested into making so many films of a specific genre, there's plenty of forgettable stuff, but there are some classics and subversive masterpieces worth noting. I use the word "genre" loosely, sometimes maybe describing more a movement or trend, like the New Hollywood Blockbuster of the 1970s. This section again will draw mostly from American cinema.

    High Noon dir. Fred Zinnemann (1952)
    3:10 to Yuma dir. Delmer Daves (1957)
    One-Eyed Jacks dir. Marlon Brando (1961)
    For a Few Dollars More dir. Sergio Leone (1965)
    The Wild Bunch dir. Sam Peckinpah (1969)
    El Topo dir. Alejandro Jodorowsky (1970)
    The Unforgiven dir. Clint Eastwood (1992)
    Brokeback Mountain dir. Ang Lee (2005)
    The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford dir. Andrew Dominik (2007)
    Meek's Cutoff dir. Kelly Reichardt (2010)

    The Man Who Laughs dir. Paul Leni (1928)
    Psycho dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1960)
    Repulsion dir. Roman Polanski (1965)
    Night of the Living Dead dir. George A. Romero (1968)
    Rosemary's Baby dir. Roman Polanski (1968)
    The Texas Chainsaw Massacre dir. Tobe Hooper (1974)
    Carrie dir. Brian De Palma (1976)
    Eraserhead dir. David Lynch (1977)
    Dawn of the Dead dir. George A. Romero (1978)
    Halloween dir. John Carpenter (1978)
    The Shining dir. Stanley Kubrick (1980)
    The Thing dir. John Carpenter (1982)
    A Nightmare on Elm Street dir. Wes Craven (1984)
    Evil Dead II dir. Sam Raimi (1987)
    The Silence of the Lambs dir. Jonathan Demme (1991)
    Ring dir. Hideo Nakata (1998)
    Audition dir. Takashi Miike (1999)
    The Sixth Sense dir. M. Night Shyamalan (1999)
    American Psycho dir. Mary Harron (2000)
    The Devil's Backbone dir. Guillermo del Toro (2001)
    The Babadook dir. Jennifer Kent (2014)
    The Witch dir. Robert Eggers (2015)
    Raw dir. Julia Ducournau (2016)
    Get Out dir. Jordan Peele (2017)
    Hereditary dir. Ari Aster (2018)
    Midsommar dir. Ari Aster (2019)

    The Maltese Falcon dir. John Huston (1941)
    Double Indemnity dir. Billy Wilder (1944)
    Mildred Pierce dir. Michael Curitz (1945)
    Gilda dir. Charles Vidor (1946)
    Body and Soul dir. Robert Rossen (1947)
    Out of the Past dir. Jacques Tourneur (1947)
    In a Lonely Place dir. Nicholas Ray (1950)
    The Big Heat dir. Fritz Lang (1953)
    Kiss Me Deadly dir. Robert Aldrich (1955)
    The Night of the Hunter dir. Charles Laughton (1955)
    The Long Goodbye dir. Robert Altman (1973)
    Chinatown dir. Roman Polanski (1974)
    Thief dir. Michael Mann (1981)
    Out of Sight dir. Steven Soderbergh (1998)
    Memento dir. Christopher Nolan (2000)
    Kiss Kiss Bang Bang dir. Shane Black (2005)
    Drive dir. Nicolas Winding Refn (2011)

    Screwball Comedy
    It Happened One Night dir. Frank Capra (1934)
    My Man Godfrey dir. Gregory La Cava (1936)
    The Awful Truth dir. Leo McCarey (1937)
    Bringing Up Baby dir. Howard Hawks (1938)
    His Girl Friday dir. Howard Hawks (1940)
    Some Like it Hot dir. Billy Wilder (1959)

    New Hollywood Blockbusters (1970s-90s)
    Close Encounters of the Third Kind dir. Steven Spielberg (1977)
    Star Wars dir. George Lucas (1977)
    Superman dir. Richard Donner (1978)
    Alien dir. Ridley Scott (1979)
    Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
    Raiders of the Lost Ark dir. Steven Spielberg (1981)
    Back to the Future dir. Robert Zemeckis (1985)
    Terminator 2: Judgment Day dir. James Cameron (1991)

    The Hollywood Coming of Age Film
    Rebel Without a Cause dir. Nicholas Ray (1955)
    Fast Times at Ridgemont High dir. Amy Heckerling (1982)
    The Breakfast Club dir. John Hughes (1985)
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off dir. John Hughes (1986)
    Dazed and Confused dir. Richard Linklater (1993)
    Kids dir. Larry Clark (1995)
    Mean Girls dir. Mark Waters (2004)
    Superbad dir. Greg Mottola (2007)
    Lady Bird dir. Greta Gerwig (2017)

    Hollywood Animation
    Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs dir. 5 people (1937)
    Fantasia dir. 11 people (1940)
    Duck Amuck dir. Chuck Jones (1953)
    Robin Hood dir. Wolfgang Reitherman (1973)
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit? dir. Robert Zemeckis (1988)
    The Nightmare Before Christmas dir. Henry Selick (1993)
    The Lion King dir. Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff (1994)
    Toy Story dir. John Lasseter (1995)
    Up dir. Bob Peterson, Pete Docter (2009)
    Inside Out dir. Pete Docter (2015)
    Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse dir. Bob Perischetti, Peter Ramsey, Rodney Rothman (2018)

    Akira dir. Katsuhiro Otomo (1988)
    Grave of the Fireflies dir. Isao Takahata (1988)
    My Neighbor Totoro dir. Hayao Miyazaki (1988)
    Princess Mononoke dir. Hayao Miyazaki (1997)
    Spirited Away dir. Hayao Miyazaki (2001)
    Summer Wars dir. Mamoru Hosada (2009)
    Your Name dir. Makoto Shinkai (2016)

    Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb dir. Stanley Kubrick (1964)
    This is Spinal Tap dir. Rob Reiner (1984)
    Spaceballs dir. Mel Brooks (1987)
    Showgirls dir. Paul Verhoeven (1995)
    Josie and the Pussycats dir. Harry Elfont, Deborah Kaplan (2001)
    Wet Hot American Summer dir. David Wain (2001)
    Shaun of the Dead dir. Edgar Wright (2004)
    Borat dir. Larry Charles (2006)
    Hot Fuzz dir. Edgar Wright (2007)
    Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story dir. Jake Kasdan (2007)
    MacGruber dir. Jorma Taccone (2010)
    21 Jump Street dir. Christopher Miller, Phil Lord (2012)

    Enter the Dragon dir. Robert Clouse (1973)
    Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior dir. George Miller (1981)
    Robocop dir. Paul Verhoeven (1987)
    Die Hard dir. John McTieman (1988)
    Starship Troopers dir. Paul Verhoeven (1997)
    Armageddon dir. Michael Bay (1998)
    The Matrix dir. Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski (1999)
    The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring dir. Peter Jackson (2001)
    The Bourne Identity dir. Doug Liman (2002)
    The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers dir. Peter Jackson (2002)
    The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King dir. Peter Jackson (2003)
    Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl dir. Gore Verbinsky (2003)
    John Wick dir. Chad Stahelski, David Leitch (2014)
    Mad Max: Fury Road dir. George Miller (2015)
    Mission: Impossible - Fallout dir. Christopher McQuarrie (2018)

    Superhero/Comic Book Cinema
    Batman dir. Tim Burton (1989)
    Batman & Robin dir. Joel Schumacher (1997)
    Spider-Man 2 dir. Sam Raimi (2004)
    The Dark Knight dir. Christopher Nolan (2008)
    The Avengers dir. Joss Whedon (2012)
    Logan dir. James Mangold (2017)
    Black Panther dir. Ryan Coogler (2018)

    Romantic Comedy
    Roman Holiday dir. William Wyler (1953)
    Sabrina dir. Billy Wilder (1954)
    Annie Hall dir. Woody Allen (1977)
    Say Anything... dir. Cameron Crowe (1989)
    Notting Hill dir. Richard Curtis (1999)

    I have generally preferred narrative cinema to documentary, and that's led to documentaries being another one of the gaps in my film exploration.

    Portrait of Jason dir. Shirley Clarke (1967)
    The Last Waltz dir. Martin Scorsese (1978)
    Paris is Burning dir. Jennie Livingston (1991)
    From the East dir. Chantal Akerman (1993)
    Hoop Dreams dir. Steve James (1994)
    Black Is...Black Ain't dir. Marlon Riggs (1995)
    When We Were Kings dir. Leon Gast (1996)
    The Thin Blue Line dir. Errol Morris (1998)
    The Act of Killing dir. Joshua Oppenheimer, Anonymous (2012)
    The Look of Silence dir. Joshua Oppenheimer (2014)
    Cameraperson dir. Kirsten Johnson (2016)
    I Am Not Your Negro dir. Raoul Peck (2016)
    Minding the Gap dir. Bing Liu (2018)

    I only really began dipping the tip of my toe in experimental cinema in the last year, maybe two. A couple pieces are worth including.
    Blue dir. Derek Jarman (1993)
    America dir. Garrett Bradley (2019)

    Important Auteurs
    110 Films
    Filmmaking is collaborative, and takes teams of people all working on different aspects of cinema to bring a film to life. Auteur theory, however, has defined so much of how audiences view cinema that the voice of certain authors matters immensely in analysis and reception. The director usually has most of the input in how a film comes together, and while throughout history it has led to the lionization of mostly white men, and allowed a platform for many men to escape accountability for harm they've caused, it remains a useful lens through which to critique and analyze film. I understand and appreciate the Death of the Author, but feel like art must be viewed multiple ways if we're engaging with it seriously. I tried to limit to 5 films per director, though some have films mentioned in previous sections and I broke that rule for a handful more. Mostly selected those I felt familiar enough with to pick a few films for canonization, if they had 1-2 films I think that highly of, mostly they were included elsewhere. Alphabetized by last name, films listed chronologically.

    Paul Thomas Anderson
    Boogie Nights dir. Paul Thomas Anderson (1997)
    Magnolia dir. Paul Thomas Anderson (1999)
    There Will Be Blood dir. Paul Thomas Anderson (2007)
    The Master dir. Paul Thomas Anderson (2012)
    Phantom Thread dir. Paul Thomas Anderson (2017)

    Wes Anderson
    Bottle Rocket dir. Wes Anderson (1996)
    Rushmore dir. Wes Anderson (1998)
    The Royal Tenenbaums dir. Wes Anderson (2001)
    Fantastic Mr. Fox dir. Wes Anderson (2009)
    The Grand Budapest Hotel dir. Wes Anderson (2014)

    Ingmar Bergman
    Smiles of a Summer Night dir. Ingmar Bergman (1955)
    Wild Strawberries dir. Ingmar Bergman (1957)
    Cries and Whispers dir. Ingmar Bergman (1972)
    Scenes from a Marriage dir. Ingmar Bergman (1973)
    Fanny and Alexander dir. Ingmar Bergman (1982)

    John Cassavetes
    Shadows dir. John Cassavetes (1959)
    Husbands dir. John Cassavetes (1970)
    A Woman Under the Influence dir. John Cassavetes (1974)

    Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
    Raising Arizona dir. Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (1987)
    Fargo dir. Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (1996)
    The Big Lebowski dir. Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (1998)
    No Country for Old Men dir. Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (2007)
    Inside Llewyn Davis dir. Joel Coen, Ethan Coen (2013)

    Sofia Coppola
    The Virgin Suicides dir. Sofia Coppola (1999)
    Lost in Translation dir. Sofia Coppola (2003)
    Marie Antoinette dir. Sofia Coppola (2006)
    Somewhere dir. Sofia Coppola (2010)

    Pedro Costa
    In Vanda's Room dir. Pedro Costa (2000)
    Vitalina Varela dir. Pedro Costa (2020)

    Alfonso Cuaron
    Y tu mama también dir. Alfonso Cuaron (2001)
    Children of Men dir. Alfonso Cuaron (2006)
    Gravity dir. Alfonso Cuaron (2013)
    Roma dir. Alfonso Cuaron (2018)

    Alfred Hitchcock
    Shadow of a Doubt dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1943)
    Notorious dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1946)
    Rear Window dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1954)
    The Man Who Knew Too Much dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1956)
    North by Northwest dir. Alfred Hitchcock (1959)

    Charlie Kaufman
    Being John Malkovich dir. Spike Jonze (1999)
    Adaptation dir. Spike Jonze (2002)
    Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind dir. Michel Gondry (2004)
    Synecdoche, New York dir. Charlie Kaufman (2008)

    Krzystof Kieslowski
    Dekalog dir. Krzysztof Kieslowski (1988)
    Three Colors: Blue dir. Krzysztof Kieslowski (1993)
    Three Colors: White dir. Krzysztof Kieslowski (1994)
    Three Colors: Red dir. Kryzysztof Kieslowski (1994)

    Stanley Kubrick
    The Killing dir. Stanley Kubrick (1956)
    Paths of Glory dir. Stanley Kubrick (1957)
    Barry Lyndon dir. Stanley Kubrick (1975)
    Eyes Wide Shut dir. Stanley Kubrick (1999)

    Spike Lee
    She's Gotta Have It dir. Spike Lee (1986)
    Malcolm X dir. Spike Lee (1992)
    Bamboozled dir. Spike Lee (2000)
    25th Hour dir. Spike Lee (2002)
    Inside Man dir. Spike Lee (2006)

    Richard Linklater
    Slacker dir. Richard Linklater (1990)
    Before Sunrise dir. Richard Linklater (1995)
    Waking Life dir. Richard Linklater (2001)
    Before Sunset dir. Richard Linklater (2004)
    Boyhood dir. Richard Linklater (2014)

    Ernst Lubitsch
    Design for Living dir. Ernst Lubitsch (1933)
    Ninotchka dir. Ernst Lubitsch (1939)
    The Shop Around the Corner dir. Ernst Lubitsch (1940)
    To Be or Not to Be dir. Ernst Lubitsch (1942)
    Cluny Brown dir. Ernst Lubitsch (1946)

    Sidney Lumet
    Fail Safe dir. Sidney Lumet (1964)
    Serpico dir. Sidney Lumet (1973)
    Network dir. Sidney Lumet (1976)

    David Lynch
    Blue Velvet dir. David Lynch (1986)
    Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me dir. David Lynch (1992)
    Lost Highway dir. David Lynch (1997)
    Mulholland Drive dir. David Lynch (2001)
    Inland Empire dir. David Lynch (2006)

    Terrence Malick
    Badlands dir. Terrence Malick (1973)
    Days of Heaven dir. Terrence Malick (1978)
    The Thin Red Line dir. Terrence Malick (1998)
    The Tree of Life dir. Terrence Malick (2011)
    A Hidden Life dir. Terrence Malick (2019)

    Adam Sandler
    Billy Madison dir. Tamra Davis (1995)
    Happy Gilmore dir. Dennis Dugan (1996)
    Punch-Drunk Love dir. Paul Thomas Anderson (2002)
    Click dir. Frank Coraci (2006)
    Uncut Gems dir. Benny Safdie, Joshua Safdie (2019)

    Martin Scorsese
    Who's That Knocking at My Door dir. Martin Scorsese (1967)
    Mean Streets dir. Martin Scorsese (1973)
    The King of Comedy dir. Martin Scorsese (1982)
    The Last Temptation of Christ dir. Martin Scorsese (1988)
    The Age of Innocence dir. Martin Scorsese (1993)
    The Wolf of Wall Street dir. Martin Scorsese (2013)
    The Irishman dir. Martin Scorsese (2019)

    Steven Soderbergh
    Sex, Lies, and Videotape dir. Steven Soderbergh (1989)
    King of the Hill dir. Steven Soderbergh (1993)
    Schizopolis dir. Steven Soderbergh (1996)
    Ocean's Twelve dir. Steven Soderbergh (2004)
    High Flying Bird dir. Steven Soderbergh (2019)

    Steven Spielberg
    Jurassic Park dir. Steven Spielberg (1993)
    Schindler's List dir. Steven Spielberg (1993)
    Catch Me If You Can dir. Steven Spielberg (2002)
    Munich dir. Steven Spielberg (2005)
    War of the Worlds dir. Steven Spielberg (2005)

    Quentin Tarantino
    Reservoir Dogs dir. Quentin Tarantino (1992)
    Pulp Fiction dir. Quentin Tarantino (1994)
    Jackie Brown dir. Quentin Tarantino (1997)
    Inglourious Basterds dir. Quentin Tarantino (2009)
    Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood Quentin Tarantino (2019)

    Andrei Tarkovsky
    Mirror dir. Andrei Tarkovsky (1972)
    Stalker dir. Andrei Tarkovsky (1979)

    Tommy Wiseau
    The Room dir. Tommy Wiseau (2003)

    Edward Yang
    A Brighter Summer Day dir. Edward Yang (1991)
    Yi Yi dir. Edward Yang (2000)

    What sucks is I'm 100% sure I'm missing at least a dozen that when I remember, will be certain deserve to be listed. But for now I'm content.
  10. OhTheWater

    Let it run Supporter

    aoftbsten and Nathan like this.
  11. phaynes12

    playing in the band Supporter

    what a service. wow.
    coleslawed likes this.
  12. riotspray

    Trusted Prestigious

    Nathan likes this.
  13. phaynes12

    playing in the band Supporter

    riotspray and Nathan like this.
  14. Marx&Recreation


    An okay start, I guess
    SpyKi, riotspray, Brent and 1 other person like this.
  15. Nathan

    Always do the right thing. Supporter

    Thanks! And thanks @OhTheWater, I think this is a cool thread idea. I know so many people with such deeper knowledge on film and film history, both personal friends and a few folks here, so truly it's just a start. I'm positive many others will have a lot to fill in my gaps.
  16. CarpetElf

    i cant close my ass Prestigious

    riotspray likes this.
  17. CarpetElf

    i cant close my ass Prestigious

    now excuse me while i add 500 films to my to watch list
    coleslawed, riotspray and Nathan like this.
  18. angrycandy

    I will always be nicer to the cat than I am to you Prestigious

    The Mirror is incredible
    Nathan likes this.
  19. Brent

    Destroy What You Create Prestigious


    coleslawed and Nathan like this.
  20. Meerkat

    Trusted Prestigious

    Absolutely next level @Nathan. Stoked to see Josie & the Pussycats pop up on there
    phaynes12 and Nathan like this.
  21. Nathan

    Always do the right thing. Supporter

    Seen it! That and The Naked Gun probably belong, I just capped myself at 450 for now.

    Thank you! It rules! Truly one of my personal favorites.
    Brent and phaynes12 like this.
  22. Ferrari333SP

    Trusted Supporter

    Going to put much less effort into this than the amazing Nathan, but for me, I'd say The Thin Red Line, The Motorcycle Diaries, Sicario, Lawrence of Arabia, Solaris (hot take: the George Clooney one), The Witch, Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade, Blade Runner 2049, and Kingdom of Heaven. I'm sure there's several that I just can't remember at the moment, but these are the ones that immediately jump to mind, that I never tire of watching.
    Brent and Nathan like this.
  23. Nathan

    Always do the right thing. Supporter

    The Soderbergh/Clooney Solaris is maybe my favorite Soderbergh. Both are incredible, will probably add Soderbergh’s to my list whenever I allow myself to add more
    Ferrari333SP and phaynes12 like this.
  24. phaynes12

    playing in the band Supporter

    it’s great but it doesn’t touch the original imo
  25. Ferrari333SP

    Trusted Supporter

    The pacing of it was my biggest issue; I just didn’t have the patience for how slow it was. But for those that do I can see it being a great film