24 Oct 2015

A love letter to my favourite directors

This post comes inspired by a recent discussion between me and a few of my housemates. We were each trying to agree on the best movies and to create a personal list of our top five directors. I have decided (well, actually Jade did for me) to write up my list on here.


5. Sergio Leone


Number five on my list is Sergio Leone. He's the genius behind classic westerns such as The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, and Once Upon a Time in the West. To me, these movies have encapsulated everything that comes in a good piece of fiction. There's the hero, the villain, and a quest for glory or redemption. When watching one of these pictures, it quickly becomes clear that Leone doesn't make any compromises when it comes to writing, cinematography and soundtrack. You've got the iconic and witty lines ("If you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk"), the exciting action shots such as the one above, and the beautiful music by Ennio Morricone. Basically, if you're looking for an enthralling western, look no further and check out Leone's movies.

4. The Coen Brothers


Okay, so technically not one director, but Joel and Ethan Coen always collaborate together that you can count them as one director. The best thing I can say about Coen Brothers' films are how they seem to accurately depict the sheer randomness of life. For example, look at the murders committed by Gaear and Carl in Fargo, or likewise the entire plot of No Country for Old Men. The Coens have a knack for showing us the hard truths of life; that it can be punishing and rewarding just because it can. But that's just, like, my opinion, man.

3. David Lynch



How on earth do you describe David Lynch? While his newer work tends to suck, I have thoroughly enjoyed any flick of his from the 80's or 90's. I suppose it's just how mind-bending his movie's can be. There's a grand psychological undertow that hooks the viewers into a sense of dread or unease. Take the diner scene in Mulholland Drive for instance; so much tension ingrained into a single conversation. After the initial jumpscare, you begin to feel slight paranoia throughout the rest of the movie, thinking something will jump out at the screen every time the camera pans around the corner. But it doesn't, and yet we feel afraid. That's why I love David Lynch.

2. Stanley Kubrick


A bit cliché to have Kubrick on this list, but I'm putting him on nonetheless. I like to think of Kubrick as the master of silence, with some of his most famous scenes going without a single line of dialogue. His use of classical music in 2001: A Space Odyssey is astounding, and creates a beautifully auditory experience. You can read into his movies so much, just look at the amount of critical analyses that evaluate the messages behind The Shining or Paths of Glory. Every time I get asked what my favourite Kubrick film is, I find it hard to answer. I don't think his movies deserve to be compared and rated, because doing so would trivialise his work. Each film speaks to me in different, not better, ways.

1. Alfonso Cuarón


There's one rule when it comes to watching Children of Men: don't ignore the background. Cuarón is the modern king of detail. Just watch the movie and ignore Clive Owen's character and focus on the stuff going on behind him. The background of a dystopian Britain is so detailed, everything feels alive that it's almost overwhelming. Then you've got the smaller details that just make a film's world so much more vivid. Children of Men was released in 2006, set in 2027, and the main character wears a "London 2012 Olympics" hoodie. The film took the time to add buildings to the background that had not yet been built. You can also notice this in some of Cuarón's other films, such as Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

So, why do I put Alfonso Cuarón and Children of Men at the top? Simple: it's the movie that made me love movies.

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