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Sunday, May 22, 2005

Time's Top 100 Movies

Time's Top 100 Movies

This news story deserves a commentary all its own. Time Magazine has released a laughable list of their Top 100 movies of all time, including foreign films. Not that I would ever trust Time to make intelligent recommendations for film viewing. That would be like asking Entertainment Weekly to report on medieval art. One thing to note: they didn't have a quota for directors, so directors can have more than one work listed.

Notable exclusions from the Time list easily invalidate any justification they have for coming up with their list:
  • The Rules of the Game (#3 on the authoritative Sight and Sound list and arguably more influential than Citizen Kane. There is only one from Jean Renoir on this list, and it's certainly not better than The Rules of the Game)
  • There is no Andrei Tarkovsky on this list, a director that most knowledgeable critics and directors would hail as one of the greatest ever. Ingmar Bergman greatly admired his work, calling him "the finest contemporary filmmaker" and credited his work as "a new language which allows him to seize hold of life as appearance, life as a dream."
  • There is only one Robert Bresson and no Michelangelo Antonioni on this list. I'm beginning to doubt if Corliss and Schickel are qualified to judge world cinema.
  • 2001: A Space Odyssey (The predecessor to modern sci-fi and Kubrick's greatest work.)
  • The Passion of Joan of Arc (Oops, they forgot to include arguably the greatest silent film of all time. At least they didn't forget Chaplin or Keaton. There is no Dreyer on this list.)
  • Battleship Potemkin, Ivan the Terrible (Nothing from Eisenstein on this list. That's like excluding the Beatles from a list of greatest rock bands. Idiots.)
  • The Seven Samurai, Rashomon, Ran (There's no way to fit all of the Kurosawa that should be on that list)
  • Vertigo (#2 on Sight and Sound), Rear Window (No way to fit all of the Hitchcock they need)
  • La Dolce Vita (Among Fellini's finest films)
  • Fanny and Alexander, The Seventh Seal, Wild Strawberries (both are greater and more influential than Smiles of a Summer Night)
  • Apocalypse Now (still the greatest war film ever)
  • Touch of Evil (Some classics of film noir getting no love on this list)
  • The Third Man (See above)
  • Duck Soup (No Groucho Marx on this list)
  • more: Raiders of the Lost Ark (The predecessor to modern adventure movies), Alien, Jaws, Paths of Glory, M, The Wizard of Oz, Bringing Up Baby, Blue Velvet (no David Lynch on this list)
  • The Fly, over Videodrome and Dead Ringers for Cronenberg?
  • Bande a part, over Breathless, Pierrot Le Fou, and Contempt for Godard?
  • The Purple Rose of Cairo, over Annie Hall, Manhattan, and Crimes and Misdemeanors for Woody Allen?

It is understandably difficult to make a Top 100 list. But if you're telling me that Finding Nemo, Talk to Her, City of God, Kandahar, Drunken Master II, and The Singing Detective are better than The Rules of the Game, Vertigo, Mirror, The Passion of Joan of Ark, Au Hazard Balthazar, and The Passion of Joan of Arc, then you must provide me with the hallucinogenic that you and Corliss and Schickel are using. I've submitted my scathing critique to Time. Hopefully, they will be too shamed to publish it.

DJMonsterMo | 7:35 PM |


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