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Now pick your all-time directors-(both favs & best)???

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(*-as usual indicates an *Oscar victor)

Now this ultra imperative category has had The American Film Institute-(AFI) always confused me, they have every other survey, tv special, etc under the son, but have yet to cover THE MEN BEHIND THE CAMERA/FILMMAKERS & DIRECTORS-(very bizarre land)???



(Which I;ve nagged this station & site to conduct it's own fans surveys for about 14yrs now, all fell on deaf ears & the most outrageous thing is that almost every single other film medium has had it's own, but us here have for some reason are ALWAYS ignored & left out.  I;m not talking about a fans fan poll, but of course like the pros do (AFI, SIGHT & SOUND, HOLLYWOOD.COM, PREMIERE, EW, FILMS OF THE GOLDEN AGE/CLASSIC IMAGES, IMDB.COM, TV GUIDE, even my local newspaper back when AFI conducted it's first in '98/    & NOBODY HAS THE ANSWER  & CORRECT ME IF I'M WRONG DIDN'T AMC-(before it changed)  HAVE IT'S OWN TOO?

A REGULAR SCIENCE-FICTION SURVEY  & I  LOVE THE BFI-(British Film Institute) they joined in also with the Brits own for 1998 & easily voted THE THIRD MAN as A #1 ever. & on that note they voted *DAME JUDIE DENCH as the finest actress ever from the UK  COMPLAINT THOUGH: as brilliant as the 1 for 6 *AMPAS nominee & winner is, I go for *CATE BLANCHETT a bit over her talented wise, close behind the 1 for 7 to date nominee *KATE WINSLET.  Wonder why they didn't vote on an actor in same BFI poll, that was dumb, *OLIVIER!




SIMPLY  WHAT IS YOUIR ALL-TME FAVORITE FILMAKER-(well, most of the crew is a filmmaker, I mean FILM DIRECTOR)

AGAIN, all can separate their favs to what they truly think is A #1 of ALL-TIME!!!

I do now one thing about 98 to even 99% is that if AFI does do this *Spielberg & Hitch will likely take it.  WHAT DO YOU THINK ON THAT ONE? & AWAY I GO ON MINE 1st>

My all-time favorite directors>A No. #1 *JOHN "Pappy" FORD-(l894-l973)-(SEAN O'FENNEY)  what's to say all-time BD record with 4 & even won 2 more statuettes for his WWII docu's & *Orson said it best when asked who did you learn from & *Welles simply said "I Learned from the Masters, John Ford, John Ford & John Ford" unquote & coulda easily chosen Arlington, cem as an Admiral but chose Holy Cross, cem instead & was said to even be able to interview WYATT EARP-(l948-29) (TRIVIA: All four of his BD victories were for non-Westerns) & (MY OWN FAV. THE SEARCHERS & HIS OWN FAV 1953's WAIT UNTIL THE SUN SHINES BRIGHT)

2. ALFRED HITCHCOCK (l899-l980) (went 0 for 5 with his peers? However did get the 1979 AFI Award) (MY FAV>VERTIGO & HIS SHADOW OF A DOUBT-(l943) (P.S. I;m must be strange but my favorite ride at Universal was The Hitchcock Museum)

3. HOWARD HAWKS=(l896-l974) (outrageously this man only ever received 1 BD nod for Sergeant York!? & was the only filmmaker during HOLLYWOODS GOLDEN AGE/STUDIO-SYSTEM-=(circa 1925-63) that could handle every film genre> Scarface, Twentieth Century, Bringing Up Baby, His Girl Friday, Ball of Fire, His Girl Friday, S. York, Big Sleep, To Have and Have Not, The Thing,  Red River, Rio Bravo, El Dorado & many more) (But at this date I can't recall Hawks really picking a fav of his?)

4. *ORSON WELLES-(l9l5-l985) (What in the ...is there to say? HOLLYWOOD used that term genius far too often, he was 100% GENIUS on every level) (& sadly wasted talent, mainly of course as to what he did to WR Hearst & of course ROSEBUD.  Some critics, historians,etc Peter Bogdanovich ranks 1942's almost as brilliant MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS (RKO also helped to destroy his genius) even over KANE & I think he even goes as far as rating 1958's brilliant B-movie TOUCH OF EVIL (l958-UI)-(TRIVIA: Actually filmed at Venice Beach, CALIF.) They shoulda known after that legendary 1938 radio show. Only *Oscar he ever won, well kind of anyway was for co-writing KANE & now rumor has it that he desperately needed that script credit so he could get pd$$$  *Herman J. Mankiewicz is now fully realized as the main scripter


& my 5th favorite ever, welp, you fans aren't gonna like this-(I always separate craft, talent from personal stuff) It is  drum roll

#5th *WOODY ALLEN-(l935-) (I know most loath *THE WOODMAN  but for some reason this little guy just has made me laugh since I was a kid & I very, very, rarely laugh anymore. (to date he's won 3 writing *Oscars-=(not that he really cares) (1 for BD) & only after *Billy Wilder holds the *Oscar record of 18 nods.) One thing is certain & I;m positive they have nagged ALLEN (Stewart) KONIGSBERG) to accept the AFI Award, but unlike the *Oscar recipient must accept this one in person HENCE NO: *Kate Hepburn, *Brando, Garbo, though it's most asinine snub was *CHAPLIN!   He woulda' loved it by then. & THE GREAT: SPENCER TRACY died same yr the institution was established, but it's ridiculous to think *Tracy would have personally accepted it anyway. 1 & only year td *Woody appeared in the show was after 9/11. & his fav of his works to date is both CRIMES & MISDEMEANORS & MIDNIGHT IN PARIS-(by far his biggest grosser td $71m.) & (Has always truly had 4 heroes/idols since childhood Bob Hope, *Bogey, Groucho* Chaplin) & MY FAV OF HIS, he's directed approx. 48 td  *ANNIE HALL, but MANHATTAN a close 2nd


  NO WAIT A MAN THAT IS NOT AMONG MY OWN FAVS BUT MUST BE GIVEN RESPECT, WITHOUT HIM-(*De Mille) wasn't really big yet) IS D.W. GRIFFITH (David (Wark) GRIFFITH-(l874-l948)  A nasty word in this era & I understand the hatred of his 1915 BIRTH OF A NATION, HOWEVER HIS FOLLOW UP WAS SOOO INCEDIBLE 1916's INTOLERANCE!!! & next time you happen to see those behemoth Elephants-(most tourist don't even know this?) those are obviously lifted from his epic silent film, of course currently overlooking THE DOLBY THEATRE. I read a disgusting story & maybe his last appearance in public, don't know but he was standing outside GRAUMAN'S really packed for the 1938 version of The Buccaneer & some cop  violently pushed him to the ground , spat on him & yelled get out of the way old man, obviously had no concert who he was. He died of a heart attack in the alledgedly haunted NICKERBOCKER HOTEL  & William (Fred Mertz) dropped dead just outside, heart attack & can't recall her or his name abn Art-Director jumped to his death from one of it's windows









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Unlike his contemporaries 3 time BD winner *WILLIAM WYLER=-(l902-8l) in the books what was called THE INVISIBLE STYLE

& of course they had hacks that the DREAM FACTORIES would save $money$ & race through the picture, hence ESSEMBY LINE   W.S. Van Dyke-(was the epitome of this style) 

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These kinds of lists are never finished, but for today:


Woody Allen

Luis Buñuel

Vittorio de Sica

Federico Fellini

Bob Fosse

Sam Fuller

Alfred Hitchcock

Akira Kurosawa

Preston Sturges

William Wyler


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  • Stanley Kubrick
  • Akira Kurosawa
  • Martin Scorsese
  • Joel & Ethan Coen
  • Ingmar Bergman
  • Federico Fellini
  • Alfred Hitchcock
  • Luis Bunuel
  • Fritz Lang
  • Woody Allen
  • David Lean
  • Michael Powell
  • Pedro Almodovar
  • Christopher Nolan
  • Paul Thomas Anderson
  • Wes Anderson
  • John Carpenter
  • David Cronenberg
  • Robert Altman
  • John Huston
  • David Lynch
  • Billy Wilder
  • William Wyler
  • John Ford
  • Howard Hawks
  • Jim Jarmusch
  • Dario Argento
  • Sidney Lumet
  • Sergio Leone
  • James Whale
  • Jack Arnold
  • Robert Aldrich

I could list a few dozen more, but that's enough for now.

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Here are some more that I like:

  • Terence Malick
  • Rene Clair
  • Jean Renoir
  • Vittorio De Sica
  • Carl Theodor Dreyer
  • Tim Burton
  • Steven Spielberg
  • Quentin Tarantino
  • Danny Boyle
  • Michael Mann
  • Ridley Scott
  • Raoul Walsh
  • William Wellman
  • Frank Capra
  • Michael Curtiz
  • Clint Eastwood
  • Alexander Payne
  • David O. Russell
  • Terry Gilliam
  • Jean-Pierre Jeunet
  • Bob Fosse
  • Guillermo Del Toro
  • Alfonso Cuaron
  • Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu
  • Milos Forman
  • Walter Hill
  • Sam Peckinpah
  • Oliver Stone
  • Sam Raimi
  • Robert Bresson
  • Jean-Pierre Melville
  • Henri-Georges Clouzot
  • Takashi Miike
  • Takeshi Kitano
  • Kon Ichikawa
  • Yasujiro Ozu
  • Mario Bava
  • Nicholas Ray
  • Nicolas Winding Refn
  • Edgar Wright
  • Orson Welles
  • Spike Lee
  • Ang Lee
  • Paul Verhoeven
  • Matthew Vaughn

These are not in any order, only as they came to mind or I noticed one of their movies on my shelves.

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To my way of thinking, no director who's advent was past the 70's should be on any manner of 'all time' lists. Somewhere there's a line between 'classic' and 'contemporary' and I assert that classics ended with that decade.

Almost for convenience more than for anything else; but not really--that's where I draw the boundary.

Sure, there were still a few studio-trained and studio-experienced talents working as the 80s appeared-- for example Robert Redford's "Ordinary People" was '82 and that represents very well, a 'classic sensibility'. There were a few others that just slipped-in-under-the-wire. Scorcese eked out a few more too.

But with the debacle of "Heaven's Gate" (which closed the book on arthouse movies for good); and with the arrival of the 'summer blockbuster', (brought to the fore by Spielberg); and with the change in audience demographics (adult moviegoers to adolescent ones), and with the new monetary structures, (materializing with "Raiders of the Lost Ark")...these events make modern-day film-making nothing like the classic era. Two different worlds. The last gasp of the 1970s coincides with all that.

I personally would not vote for any director who was merely opportunistic, egoistic, self-consciously coming along after the book had shut and doing-his-own-thing ...often regardless as to whether it is good for the industry or not.

Lucas and Spielberg are maybe only today realizing how much damage they did. Someone like Buz Luhrman? Oughta be run out of town on a rail; oughta be horsewhipped.

Bearing this in mind, I'm not sure how to make a list of top directors. It seems foolish to list classic greats like Welles or Ford when today the movie-making industry is on its last legs, dying a slow and painful death. Just sayin...


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Different factors come into play. I might mention the director who's films I saw the most growing up; or the director I 'trust' the most as an adult. Lynch or Malick? Just no. Fuller too erratic; Welles too self-indulgent...Ford, too predictable and staid...even Scorcese has disappointed me, gone off the beam in the twilight of his career. As did Kubrick (everything after 'Barry Lyndon' was in ghastly bad-taste). The greats from Japan and France, seem too remote and distant now. I might go with Coppola, except that even his late-career projects are preposterous and silly. Everything up to 'Rumblefish' and 'the Outsiders' good--everything afterwards, no. Similarly, Woody Allen. He's gone overboard into 'glam'. Not sure what to do. Redford? Eastwood? No. Both lacking something indefinite. Tod Browning? Any of the genre directors like Chaplin, Lewton, Siodmak?

Lang, Capra, Wilder, Curtiz, Zinneman, Cukor? Eh. The silents? Can't relate that well to Sternberg or von Stroheim. Russian? Hell no. That leaves the Brits.

Okay via a process of elimination I would probably wind up with the Archers. Powell & Pressburger.

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Alfred Hitchcock

Billy Wilder

George Cukor


and some others..

Ernst Lubitsch

Herbert Ross

Fred Zimmerman

Woody Allen

Howard Hawks

William Wyler

Preston Sturges

Joseph Mankiewicz

Mervyn LeRoy

Joel Coen

Frank Capra

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