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Thursday, 12 March 2020

Two Tweets on trying to watch James Ivory's The Europeans (1979)

Two Tweets on trying to watch James Ivory's The Europeans (1979)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


13 March

Two Tweets on trying to watch James Ivory's The Europeans (1979)






Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Tuesday, 10 March 2020

The Verb, the haiku, The McMillan ?

You're buying doublers ? Gotta be The Macmillan !

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


11 March

You're buying doublers ? Gotta be The Macmillan !





Slàinte !


Post-script :







Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Saturday, 29 February 2020

What a treat, what a surprise ! : Pembroke Festival of Voice, with Ruby Hughes and Joseph Middleton (work in progress)

This is a review of Pembroke Festival of Voice, with Ruby Hughes and Joseph Middleton

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


29 February

This is a review (work in progress) of Pembroke Festival of Voice,
with Ruby Hughes and Joseph Middleton, in a recital given in The Old Library, Pembroke College, Cambridge, on Friday 29 February 2020 at 8.00 p.m.

When one had paid on the door, expecting Kitty Whately (accompanied by Joseph Middleton), but put right by known others there who were in the know, how could one possibly not be delighted - with no disrespect whatever to Whately ! - to find that Ruby Hughes was performing in her stead (with Middleton) ? !

Love them or loathe them, but the wonted place - though there is also The Cambridge Concert Calendar for every term - to find a music-event is 'the railings : Middleton and Whately, with Mahler's Rückertlieder (in The Old Library at Pembroke), had fitted the bill, so Middleton with Hughes was certainly no disappointment.


The directness of Ruby Hughes, and the concomitant sincerity that it expresses, is palpable - it is through the former that we feel and read the latter


[...]


With Frauenliebe und -leben (i.e. Frauenliebe und Frauenleben), Schumann's Opus 47 song-cycle on the bill of fare, however, who could be dissatisfied at the thoughtful arc with which Hughes and Middleton traversed these eight numbers, from the - very much as it were - infatuation of 'Seit ich ihn gesehen' to the stark realizations of 'Nun hast du mir den ersten Schmerz getan' : not in any way even needing (as some do) to be apologetic for the milieu and import of Chamisso's poems, let alone limit them by or to their time. As the Purcell texts should have shown us, human-beings are and have been over the centuries, for all their differing trappings, creatures with and moulded by the same needs, desires and weaknesses as the heroines of Shakespearean drama, or the novels of The Brontës.

[...]





Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Friday, 28 February 2020

Pixiedust joins Good Rain : Solveig Slettahjell and The Slow Motion Quintet

A first-blush mini-review of Solveig Slettahjell and The Slow Motion Quintet in Pixiedust

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


28 February

A first-blush mini-review by Tweet of Solveig Slettahjell and The Slow Motion Quintet in Pixiedust









Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Monday, 24 February 2020

The 13 Rules, perhaps, of Making Documentary Films* (work in progress)

The 13 Rules*, perhaps, of Making Documentary Films (work in progress)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


24 February

The 13 Rules*, perhaps, of Making Documentary Films (work in progress)

1. If some fact or experience is extraneous to the film, but the audience is expected to know it, it should have been in the film itself (not a Q&A, DVD extras, etc.)
2. Picking and choosing to whom to give a name (using a caption), when that person starts speaking from archive material or in interview, need not be defensible as such, but a discernible rationale might be beneficial

3. By all means let some viewers believe that all the ills of the world (or all its goodness) are located in some place, practice or person, but you could ‘nod’, a little, to others who will watch more sceptically (please see Rule 5 (below) et seq.)?

4. Equally, some viewers will - surreptitiously - drown under an undifferentiated mix of : (illustrative) clips from feature films of the time ; home ciné and / or video ; generic archival footage ; date-specific footage and / or capture of t.v., etc., broadcasts ; other documentary material ; any re-enactments / re-creations, etc., etc.

5. Again, those viewers who happily absorb a message such as hinted at in Rule 3 (above) will not notice, but, even if you are determined just to tell a story that ‘enough’ people will buy wholesale (especially if only adding detail to an accepted narrative), watch out for ‘flak’, from some who expect more

6. Such flak will necessarily come from those who ask what similarities there are to other countries in the territory in which the film (if only in a specific edit or version) is targeted, and which your film largely serves some viewers as a convenient emotional and / or intellectual distraction from acknowledging (or maybe as little more than self-satisying entertainment that such things happen elsewhere ?)

7. Art can hold up the mirror to life, but it can also do us a dis-service, if it does not truthfully answer the Snow White Question asked by those who could, and should, see all that the mirror reflects

8. Some see film as having a pedagogic purpose, whereas some see documentary - when it more closely resembles 'an essay**' - as more free :

Well, there are those who teach who claim that they should tell their students what they are going to teach them, teach it, and tell them that they were taught it, and, although cinema really does not need to be that ‘heavy-handed’, film-makers might pay regard, when they have somehow decided on an intended story (or one of its 'strands'), and know it so well, that – in the edit, etc. – the film omits to tell all of its essential parts


More to come...


End-notes :

* So, for #UCFF (at least), it 'does it', if adherence is made to more than seven or eight of them…

** Though who says where, say, Tarkovsky’s Mirror (Zerkalo [Зеркало]) (1975) begins and Godard’s The Image Book (Le Livre d'image) (2018) ends ?




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Friday, 31 January 2020

Blake at Tate : Some musings

Blake at Tate : Some musings

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


1 February

Blake at Tate : Some musings






Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

For 31 January* : Collecting the #OneLovelyThingToDay Tweets

For 31 January* ~ Collecting** the #OneLovelyThingToDay Tweets

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


31 January 2020


For 31 January* ~

Collecting** the
#OneLovelyThingToDay Tweets







[...]




End-notes :

* Also artist Philip Hartigan's natal day.

** Started on, as an assemblage, at any rate.




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Thursday, 30 January 2020

Breathed-through sounds, blended with Style, Smooch, Swing... (review in progress)

At Cambridge Modern Jazz : Breathed-through sounds, blended with Style, Smooch, Swing...

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


30 January


Report from Cambridge Modern Jazz (at Cambridge University Centre Wine Bar)
on Thursday 30 January 2020 at 7.30 p.m. :

The Clovis Nicolas / Steve Fishwick Quartet brought breathed-through sounds,
blended with
Style, Smooch, Swing...



Personnel (alphabetical order) :

* Dmitry Baevsky (tnr)

* Matt Fishwick* (drs)

* Steve Fishwick (tpt)

* Clovis Nicolas (db)


All of these things ! They are not exactly those 'Three Little Words' - 'the closer' to Clovis Nicolas / Steve Fishwick Quartet's second set - and yet they begin as a list of, or a sort of touchstone for, their funk and flair : though that would be naming but a few very desirable qualities of to-night's gig.

Inarguably, and without any notion of our feeling resistance, kept us 'in there', warmed in both heart and mind. Just as, for example, the closing nod to Satchmo and 'The Sunny Side of the Street' is something that always brings out - and across - a smile to those that love Armstrong and all that he and the best of jazzers brought.

If, also, so often to too many a benighted soul, or an endeavour in which players poured out their soul, and thereby lit a flame to the actual lives that escaped them.


End-notes :

* As CMJ's David Gower has kindly pointed out, Steve Fishwick's brther Matt was 'a dep' (as they say) for Greg Hutchinson. (Search #UCFF, and Steve has been heard before, also.)




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Wednesday, 29 January 2020

'Notched' 9.5mm at Kennington Bioscope - always something to learn at The Cinema Museum !

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


29 January

Some Tweets about a 9.5mm programme, introduced by Kevin Brownlow for Kennington Bioscope, at The Cinema Museum




Being open to inter-titled / sur-titled / sub-titled cinema :






The main matter :







[...]


'We have the technology' :






Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Tuesday, 28 January 2020

In media res, the pleasure of finding Alice Coote and Julius Drake in Winterreise (uncorrected proof)

A full canvas and an unlimited palette : the pleasure of finding Alice Coote and Julius Drake in Winterreise

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


28 January

A full canvas and an unlimited palette : the pleasure of finding Alice Coote and Julius Drake
in
Winterreise, D. 911 (uncorrected proof)



Hearing barely the latter sixteen* numbers, one could :

(a) not only at first not place it - was it necessarily even Schubert, and not actually Dichterliebe, or Frauenlieben und Leben ? - but, as the libretto, once more, unfolded, that unease / dis-ease to be longer than one needed in those Straßen in den Städten [oder in den Dörfern ?] ; but also

(b) 'caught' how supremely sensitive to the text and its affective pulls and hesitations, doubts and despairs, these players were :

With freedom used both for vocalist to float or extend lines, and for Julius Drake, as pianist, also to sing, in many ways - fully resonantly ; sometimes as an almost metrically resigned hymnal, acting as a kind of 'foregrounded background' commentary ; in defiant / strident tones, usw.


From mezzo-soprano Alice Coote, free and sure use of collatura, slurred notes, selective vibrato, and - equally with the pianistic ones - variations in dynamic force, note-duration and stress.

At times, in the closing numbers, we had the sighs or deep breaths of weariness, lost hope and love, and of abandonment, all of which - ultimately, with the inevitability of as much the Dona nobis pacem of Bach's h-moll Messe, BWV 232, as Totentanz - preparing us for and taking us to dem Leiermann, so folkloric, haunting, öd und leer, and einfach da :

Beethoven's Muß es sein ?, answered by Es muß sei. It 'just is' so.


This disintegration in and of the hurdy-gurdy man is essentially one with the inexorable, slow transformation of the Singer-Poet into a degenerated form - witnessing no longer in a glass, darkly, but [...] face to face, and - having been thrust out of some Eden - der Welt abgekommen ?

Moving music**, movingly and beautfully brought to us from a Wigmore Hall that, clearly, hesitated to stir in the moments at the end !


End-notes :

* From memory, are there 32, 24 or maybe 26 texts in this Liederkreis ?

** Even without knowing what proofs / fair copies Schubert was checking in his final illness...




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Monday, 27 January 2020

'The Planets' (Holst) - unfamiliarly brought to us by Andrew Manze (not surprisingly)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


27 January

'The Planets' (Holst) - unfamiliarly brought to us by Andrew Manze (not surprisingly)





To close :






Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Wednesday, 22 January 2020

At Lunch Two (2019 / 2020 season) : With Britten Sinfonia at West Road Concert Hall (work in progress)

At Lunch Two (2019 / 2020 season) : Britten Sinfonia at West Road Concert Hall (work in progress)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


21 January

At Lunch Two (2019 / 2020 season) : With Britten Sinfonia at West Road Concert Hall
(work in progress)


Piano Trio in D Major, Op. 2, No. 8 (1728) ~ Jean-Marie Leclair (1697 – 1764)

1. Adagio
2. Allegro
3. Sarabande
4. Allegro assai


The initial theme of the Adagio, and its gestures, wholly attract our attention – to the extent that it almost sounds as if the movement (or, therefore, the work as a whole) has opened near the end (or, at least, in the middle of what might be expected of such a work). We soon notice that the violin and viola are echoic – the latter, certainly, repeats the former (though does not mimic it per se), if not vice versa, and the writing is in an especially expressive tone, which one could, of course, rely on cellist Caroline Dearnley to bring out beautifully from her wonted instrument.

In the Allegro, again an element of the catch or round, if not of antiphony. However, now with the piano* more obviously joining in, and with a 'frisky' overall ambience, which, as the psychology of music tells us (though perhaps not consciously), operates by way of preparation for what follows within the composition as a whole : the succeeding Sarabande - as so often with the Bach Suites for Solo Cello (or the keyboard or violin Partitas, whose dates of 1685 to 1750 virtually mirror those of Leclair) – is the heart of the piece.

Here, there is a melding of the string-sounds of all three instruments - maybe we forget to our cost that, though some might encourage us to think of the piano as percussive, there are strings (just not bowed (or - in this repertoire - plucked)). The balance that John Lenehan achieves with his fellow...


* * * * *



[...]






[...]


Bukoliki (1952, 1962 (arr. comp.)) ~ Witold Lutosławski (1913 - 1994)

1. Allegro vivace
2. Allegro sostenuto
3. Allegro molto
4. Andantino
5. Allegro marciale


To begin, 'an intensity' of very vigorous writing for cello in the Allegro vivace, but which is, as the movement plays out, a contrast to the succeeding section's more meditative or musing nature – and which, as the set of pieces plays out, is part of a pattern of juxtaposition. And then, Lutoslawski has Clare Finnimore (viola) and Caroline Dearnley (cello) jump back, at least to Tempo I and to the initial variety of affect, but not to a note-for-note reprise, but another re-working of the material. Then, more or less betokening the close, a re-working of Tempo II follows – which is a sort of ABAB that we might associate with, or recognize from, Bartók ?

In the Allegro sostenuto, there is – more evidently (or as one adjusts to this set of pieces ?) – a juxtaposition, at the start, of a deft pizzicato cello and a languidly legato viola – another alternation of an ABAB kind ? – whereas, in the third piece, maybe Lutosławski has sufficiently stated his folk-music credentials to pass the work off as that, but then sneaks in some illicit jazz chord-progressions or intervals**, and, as if he is a covering-up naughty school-boy, behaves as if they were never there... ?

Of the set, the wildly atmospheric Andantino had open sounds and spaces, which spoke of yearning and tenderness, and which also provided yet another point of contact (as well as of contrast), this time with the rhythmicity of the final Allegro marciale : its emphasis is on metrical stress, as the material is first presented us, but then on employing it teasingly – leading us on, and holding us off from, our expectations.



No surprise at all that these accomplished musicians***, so used to each other (and to us) from their time with Britten Sinfonia, and to each other’s playing, should play the Lutoslawski so compellingly, but - as is the norm rather than the exception with the Sinfonia programming - rather how this beacon of composition shone in its setting in this hall and in this selection of At Lunch works !


[...]


End-notes :

* Surely, in 1728, not written for even an early forte piano ?

** In Ida (2013), Pawel Pawlikowski seeks to use his authorial / directorial position to allude to the Polish underground jazz-scene, but only as part of a tale with a would-be ‘conversation’ between the secular and sacred (or, rather, the sacred and profane), which was probably better left to Hermann Hesse ?


Joanna Kulig - who ‘migrated to’ Cold War (2018) - as ‘Singer’ in Ida (2013)


*** Both the composition / arrangement and the accomplishment reminded of when Thomas Gould and Clare Finnimore had played a selection of Béla Bartók’s Duos), in At Lunch 4 (2015 / 2016 season).




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

When is 'watching a film' not watching a film ?

When is 'watching a film' not watching a film ?

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


22 January

When is 'watching a film' not watching a film ?



(and then missed 'em all)




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Saturday, 18 January 2020

From the (pre-#UCFF) archive : A review of Kosmos (2009)

From the (pre-#UCFF) archive : A review of Kosmos (2009)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


Cambridge Film Festival 2010


From the (pre-#UCFF) archive : A review of Kosmos (2009)

* Contains spoilers *

Kosmos is what he calls himself, when he is asked his name. He has previously saved the young woman’s brother, and he is delighted to hear her baying at him like a wolf, inviting him to follow her, to chase her. When he says that he is Kosmos, she says that she is Neptün, and I find myself thinking more of the seas, than of the planet. (Meeting the girl’s father, he gives a different name, but he is credited as Kosmos (Sermet Yesil), and she as Neptün (Türkü Turan).)

What we see is his visit to this indeterminate Muslim town in the snow, from when he arrives to when he leaves. All that we really know, as a foreign audience, is that he strays into areas where he should not be, that there are sounds of explosions, and that there is a border closed, which some would like opened, but which others say is just for their profit.

If we are trying to judge him, to see whether the words that he speaks when asked questions and which have a ring of teaching such as from the Koran or the book of Ecclesiastes, then we will find that he does things to disapprove of. (But don’t we all. He does not claim to be a great holy man, but answers people’s questions, and seems to seek to help.)

Ultimately, it is the disapproval, and the reliance that others have put upon him to cure as if it is without cost to himself (when we see at the start how he gives of himself to give life back to the boy whom he has rescued from the river), which cut short his time there. Some see him for who he is, but even the teacher, who sleeps with him, seeks to put her guilt on him – what he is looking for, he says, is love.

With Neptün, whether or not they sleep together, there is an unbridled energy and exuberance, a dance as of elemental forces such as their names suggest. Even his acts of healing, and what happens with natural phenomena (reminiscent of what Tarkovksy does in Mirror), suggest that he has a connection that others have forgotten about or overlooked, and which the girl sees in him more fully. The woman who places reliance in the medication Tralin ® , an anti-depressant, seems at the opposite extreme, but he is nonetheless distressed for her.

The crash-landing of some sort of lunar module, which the authorities want hushed up, but which he has already seen, seem to herald a time when judgement turns against him, and he has to leave, although not without showing his care for those who are hurting. He leaves as he arrived, and, except when he is with Neptün, there is always an ambiguous quality about his anguish and about his joy, as if their being two sides of the same coin is very close to him.

This is a remarkable piece of cinema, and would invite me to see it again. What I would have to be clear about is not to do so to find out more about who Kosmos is, since we know only the time when he is with the people in this town and often have to guess at his motives or motivations, but to see how he is valued, to see what people see in him.




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Friday, 10 January 2020

Story-telling : By juxtaposition - or free association ?

Some responses to watching Little Women (2019) (twice) (work in progress)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


10 January


Some responses to watching Little Women (2019) (twice) (work in progress)







More magnificent still, on a re-watch :





[...]







Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Monday, 30 December 2019

Some Tweets about Knives Out (2019)

Some Tweets about Knives Out (2019)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


30 December


Some Tweets about Knives Out (2019)


VLADIMIR : That passed the time.

ESTRAGON :It would have passed in any case.

VLADIMIR : Yes, but not so rapidly.
Samuel Beckettt ~ Waiting for Godot







Postlude(s) :










Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Thursday, 26 December 2019

'Thoughtful' violence in Drive (2011) and You Were Never Really Here (2017) - or the principal elements of film noir ?

Responding to 'Thoughtful Violence in Drive & You Were Never Really Here'

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


Lines of thought sparked off by 'Thoughtful Violence in Drive & You Were Never Really Here' [Nancy Epton, writing for TAKE ONE]









Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Friday, 20 December 2019

Restored, maybe revived, but what does The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964) have to say to us ?

Restored, maybe revived, but what does The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964) have to say to us ?

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


Restored, maybe revived, but what does The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964) have to say to us ?



Prelude :




Not so much rage over a lost penny as 'a rant during an interrupted bed-time' ? :






Postlude / reflections :







Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Frank, we did all we could for the man ~ Russell Bufalino (Joe Pesci)

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


20 December







Need we really consider Joker (2019) as some sort of Scorsese film – or The Irishman (2019) as Scorsese’s contribution to the film universe of Marvel ? :



Meanwhile, in some other universe (when it is Phillips who grossly steals from Scorsese's films, but not in any way to justify the theft), does someone seriously suggest that the indebtedness is the other way around, in 'Why 'The Irishman' Is Scorsese's MCU Movie' !


[...]


Postlude :






Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)

Wednesday, 11 December 2019

The 100 greatest films directed by women : A critique of method and / or purpose¹ (work in progress)

The 100 greatest films directed by women : A critique of method and / or purpose¹

More views of - or before - Cambridge Film Festival 2019 (17 to 24 October)
(Click here to go directly to the Festival web-site)


The 100 greatest films directed by women : A critique of method and / or purpose¹ (work in progress)

BBC Culture polled 368 film experts from 84 countries in order to find the best films from female film-makers – here’s the top 100

One had already heard that BBC Culture introduced its list this year by saying There was one stark statistic that jumped out from the results of last year’s BBC Culture poll to find the 100 greatest foreign-language films of all time : just four out of that 100 were directed by women :

However, despite at least one list with a deficiency, does it seem that BBC Culture has been intent, in setting up this new list of 100 films, in not learning lessons ? In other words, rather than a list that recommends as many as six films directed by the lately deceased Agnès Varda (and another five of Kathryn Bigelow's, so more than 10% of the 100 between them), maybe it could have been limited to just one film each (a maximum of two) by the best 100 or so female directors...



And, if one looks at the list by decade² (tallying them by release-date), how well is the history of film-making really represented ? As the second set of figures in square brackets shows below : 23% of these greatest films were released in or after 2011 (which rises to 43% of the films, when one adds those from the preceding decade) ; the majority are from the last three decades ; and only 16% were released before 1971.


By decade² (number of films chosen per decade, and an increasing / decreasing tally in square brackets) :

* 1910s : 1 [1 / 99]

* 1920s : 2 [3 / 97]

* 1930s : 2 [5 / 95]

* 1940s : 3 [8 / 92]

* 1950s : 1 [9 / 91]

* 1960s : 7 [16 / 84]

* 1970s : 13 [29 / 71]

* 1980s : 12 [41 / 59]

* 1990s : 16 [57 / 43]

* 2000s : 20 [77 / 23]

* 2010s : 23 [100 / 0]



[...]



Enough of the Tweets, etc. ! Here (with needful changes³) is the list of 100 films [as annotated⁴] :

1. The Piano (1993) ~ Jane Campion (1) [English, British Sign Language, Maori]

2. Cléo from 5 to 7 (Cléo de 5 à 7) (1962) ~ Agnès Varda (1) [French]

3. Jeanne Dielman, 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles ~ Chantal Akerman (1) [French]

4. Beau Travail (1999) ~ Claire Denis (1) [French]

5. Lost in Translation (2003) Sofia Coppola (1) [English, Japanese, German, French]

6. Daisies (Sedmikrásky) (1966) ~ Věra Chytilová [Czech]

7. The Hurt Locker (2008) ~ Kathryn Bigelow (1) [English, Arabic]

8. Toni Erdmann (2016) ~ Maren Ade [German, English, Romanian]

9. Fish Tank (2009) ~ Andrea Arnold (1) [English]

10. Daughters of the Dust (1991) ~ Julie Dash [English, French]

11. The Ascent (Voskhozhdenie) (1977) ~ Larisa Shepitko [Russian, German]

12. Zero Dark Thirty (2012) ~ Kathryn Bigelow (2) [English, Arabic]

13. Vagabond (Sans toit ni loi) (1985) ~ Agnès Varda (2) [French, Arabic, English]

14. Point Break (1991) ~ Kathryn Bigelow (3) [English]

15. La Ciénaga ( The Swamp) (2001) ~ Lucrecia Martel (1) [Spanish]

16. Wanda (1970) ~ Barbara Loden [English]

17. Seven Beauties (Pasqualino Settebellezze) (1975) ~ Lina Wertmüller [Italian, German, Neapolitan, Spanish]

18. American Psycho (2000) ~ Mary Harron [English, Spanish, Cantonese]

19. Orlando (1992) ~ Sally Potter [English, French]

20. Clueless (1995) ~ Amy Heckerling [English, Spanish]

21. Winter’s Bone (2010) ~ Debra Granik [English]

23¹. We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011) ~ Lynne Ramsay (1) [English]

23¹. The Hitch-Hiker (1953) ~ Ida Lupino (1) [English, Spanish]

24. Lady Bird [IMDb page (2017) ~ Greta Gerwig [English, Spanish]

25. The House is Black (1963) ~ Forugh Farrokhzad [Persian]

26. Stories we Tell (2012) ~ Sarah Polley [English]

27. Selma (2014) ~ Ava DuVernay (1) [English]

28. Le bonheur (1965) ~ Agnès Varda (3) [French]

29. Monsoon Wedding (2001) ~ Mira Nair (1) [Hindi, English]

30. Zama (2017) ~ Lucrecia Martel (2) [Spanish, Portuguese]

31. The Gleaners and I (Les glaneurs et la glaneuse) (2000) ~ Agnès Varda (4) [French]

32. The Night Porter (Il portiere di notte) (1974) ~ Liliana Cavani [English]

33. You Were Never Really Here (2017) ~ Lynne Ramsay (2) [English]

34. Morvern Callar (2002) ~ Lynne Ramsay (3) [English, Spanish]

35. The Matrix (1999) ~ Lana and Lilly Wachowski [English]

36. Wendy and Lucy (2008) ~ Kelly Reichardt (1) [English]

37. Olympia Part One : Festival of The Nations (Olympia 1. Teil - Fest der Völker) (1938) / Olympia Part Two : Festival of Beauty (Olympia 2. Teil - Fest der Schönheit) (1938) ~ Leni Riefenstahl (1) [German, English, Italian, French, Japanese, Portuguese] / [German]

38. Paris is Burning (1990) ~ Jennie Livingston [English]

39. Portrait of a Lady on Fire (Portrait de la jeune fille en feu) (2019) ~ Céline Sciamma (1) [French, Italian]

40. Boys Don’t Cry (1999) ~ Kimberly Peirce [English]

41. Capernaum (Capharnaüm) (2018) ~ Nadine Labaki [Arabic, Amharic]

42. The Adventures of Prince Achmed (Die Abenteuer des Prinzen Achmed) (1926) ~ Lotte Reiniger [Silent]

43. The Virgin Suicides (1999) ~ Sofia Coppola (2) [English]

44. American Honey (2016) ~ Andrea Arnold (2) [English]

45. Triumph of the Will (Triumph des Willens) (1935) ~ Leni Riefenstahl (2) [German]

46. Near Dark (1987) ~ Kathryn Bigelow (3) [English]

47. An Angel at my Table (1990) ~ Jane Campion (2) [English, Spanish]

48. The Asthenic Syndrome (Astenicheskiy sindrom) (1989) Kira Muratova (1) [Russian]

49. Salaam Bombay ! (1988) Mira Nair (2) [Hindi, English]

50. Outrage (1950) Ida Lupino (2) [English]

51. Harlan County U.S.A. (1976) ~ Barbara Kopple [English]

52. Happy as Lazzaro (Lazzaro felice) (2018) ~ Alice Rohrwacher [Italian]

53. The Headless Woman (La mujer sin cabeza) (2008) ~ Lucrecia Martel (3) [Spanish]

54. Bright Star (2009) ~ Jane Campion (3) [English, French]

55. Monster (2003) ~ Patty Jenkins [English]

56. 13th (2016) ~ Ava DuVernay (2) [English]

57. The Babadook (2014) ~ Jennifer Kent [English]

58. Desperately Seeking Susan (1985) ~ Susan Seidelman [English]

59. The Long Farewell (1971) ~ Kira Muratova (2) [Russian, English]

60. A League of their Own (1992) ~ Penny Marshall (1) [English]

61. India Song (1975) ~ Marguerite Duras [French]

62. Strange Days (1995) ~ Kathryn Bigelow (4) [English]

63. Marie Antoinette (2006) ~ Sofia Coppola (3) [English, Latin, French]

64. The Rider (2017) ~ Chloé Zhao [English]

65. Leave no Trace (2018) ~ Debra Granik [English]

66. Ratcatcher (1999) ~ Lynne Ramsay (4) [English]

67. The German Sisters (Die bleierne Zeit) (1981) ~ Margarethe von Trotta [German, Italian]

68. Eve’s Bayou (1997) ~ Kasi Lemmons [English]

69. The Connection (1961) ~ Shirley Clarke (1) [English]

70. Whale Rider (2002) ~ Niki Caro [English, Maori]

71. The Seashell and the Clergyman (La coquille et le clergyman) (1928) ~ Germaine Dulac [Silent]

72. Europa Europa (1980) ~ Agnieszka Holland [German, Russian, Polish, Hebrew]

73. On Body and Soul (Teströl és lélekröl) (2017) ~ Ildikó Enyedi [Hungarian]

74. Chocolat (1988) ~ Claire Denis (2) [English, French]

75. Meek’s Cutoff (2010) ~ Kelly Reichardt (2) [English]

76. Girlhood (Bande de filles) (2014) ~ Céline Sciamma (2) [French]

77. Tomboy (2011) ~ Céline Sciamma (3) [French]

78. The Apple (Sib) (1998) ~ Samira Makhmalbaf [Persian]

79. Shoes (1916) ~ Lois Weber [Silent]

80. Big (1988) ~ Penny Marshall (2) [English]

81. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014) ~ Ana Lily Amirpour [Persian]

82. At Land (Szárazföldön) (1944) ~ Maya Deren (1) [Silent]

83. Sleepless in Seattle (1993) ~ Nora Ephron [English]

84. Portrait of Jason (1967) ~ Shirley Clarke (2) [English]

85. One Sings, The Other Doesn’t (L'une chante l'autre pas) (1977) ~ Agnès Varda (5) [French]

86. Wadjda (2012) ~ Haifaa Al-Mansour [Arabic]

87. 35 Shots of Rum (35 rhums) (2008) ~ Claire Denis (3) [French, German]

88. The Silences of the Palace (Samt el qusur) (1994) ~ Moufida Tlatli [Arabic, French]

89. The Beaches of Agnès (Les plages d’ Agnès) (2008) ~ Agnès Varda (6) [French, English]

90. Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982) ~ Amy Heckerling [English]

91. White Material (2009) ~ Claire Denis (4) [French]

92. Raw (Grave) (2016) ~ Julia Ducournau [French]

93. Red Road (2006) ~ Andrea Arnold (3) [English]

94. News From Home (1977) ~ Chantal Akerman (2) [French]

95. Ritual in Transfigured Time (1946) ~ Maya Deren (2) [Silent]

96. The Meetings of Anna (Les rendez-vous d'Anna) (1977) ~ Chantal Akerman (3) [French]

97. Adoption (Örökbefogadás) (1975) ~ Márta Mészáros [Hungarian]

98. Somewhere (2010) ~ Sofia Coppola (4) [English, Italian]

99. The Souvenir (2019) ~ Joanna Hogg [English]

100. The Kids are All Right (2010) ~ Lisa Cholodenko [English]



To indicate another absurd bias, a tally of language(s)⁵ spoken in the 100 list [five films are silent] :


English (only) : 37 [37 = running total]

French : 13 [50]

Therefore, one-half of this greatest 100 is, if not in English, then in French - very inclusive


English (as principal language⁵) + Spanish : 5 [55]

English + French or French + English : 5 [60]

English + Arabic : 2 [62]


English + other languages : 6 [68]

French + other languages : 3 [71]

Then, when one has added in where English or French is the principal language⁵, but others are spoken, one has accounted for more than 70% of the films


Silent : 5 [76]

Persian : 3 [79]

German : [81½]

Hungarian : 2 [83½]

Spanish : 2 [85½]


Hindi + English : 2 [87½]


Other sole languages, or combinations of languages : 12½?? [100]



Twitter end-notes :




End-notes :

¹ Put another way, one suspects that BBC Culture polled its 384 people will little idea why, but to end up with a ranked list, because it could, and did not have one - this list seemed to acknowledge no joint placings, which would have been odd in one of such compromise and of such length, but the task of re-ordering has found two placed at no. 23 (and no no. 22) [again, one would normally expect, if this is not a typo, both to be placed at 22, with no 23].

² #UCFF is stubbornly insisting that, for example, the 1940s begin with 1941 and end with 1950.

³ #UCFF's needful changes :

(1) The preference for a descending list has been imposed, because an ascending list is a convention, which does not make sense when one can fully scroll through it (as against when one has, at least, to click a link to progress from, say, the section for films 100-91 to that for those numbered 90-81.

(2) It is not a convention to give the release-date as the original list did, so that has also been changed.

(3) The insistence on persisting in putting film titles IN CAPITALS, not italicizing them, is a mistake that has meandered on from when putting on the Shift key in copy was the simplest way to denote a title.


⁴ Directors' names are in italic, with the increasing tally of their films in parentheses afterwards (i.e. where they are from the 19 on whose work the list calls for 56% of its 100 entries). Where #UCFF has a review, the title links to it ; where it has watched the film and approved, TBC ???

⁵ These have been accepted as given by the IMDb-page for each page (to which the non-underlined film-titles link), the language (or languages) : IMDb confirms that the first language, where two or more are given, should be the principal language : it specifiesto those submitting this information that ‘If more than one language was spoken, please enter them in order of frequency such that the main language is entered first’.




Unless stated otherwise, all films reviewed were screened at Festival Central (Arts Picturehouse, Cambridge)