Tuesday, January 04, 2005

your favourite directors?

Another long overdue post. Been busy with work and making plans for Couple. I can almost surely announce here that for you people lucky enough to get a hold of the limited early edition of Punk Rock For Sissies, those CDs are almost certain to be the only ones that will ever be sold. We only made about 50 copies earlier. So depending on our mood that amount might be increased to 100 copies. But after that, it'll be gone. What will we do with the tapes? After all, we did spend a bit of money recording them. All I can say for now is, you'll see.

Bought a copy of The Life Aquatic on DVD yesterday. Was shocked to see that it's a pristine DVD quality copy, only with words saying that it's the property of some company on the screen. My dear pirates, you definitely never cease to amaze me with your resourcefulness. Still haven't seen it though. Spent last night being disappointed by the lazy Malaysian football players who seem to easily give up. C'mon guys, show more balls!!

Back to The Life Aquatic. Can't wait to see it. In case you guys didn't know, it's directed by Wes Anderson, the man behind Bottle Rocket, Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums. I can definitely say, that from the 90s, he's the only director that I would call my favourite. Why? Because like the great Hal Ashby, his movies are always just perfect. Never more, never less. Tarantino? He's good, but sometimes too flashy for his own good. Paul Thomas Anderson, well Magnolia was a triumph, but his others are still not endearing enough to make him my favourite.
Lars Von Trier, maybe. Up till Breaking The Waves, he was absolutely mesmerising. After that, okay lor.

So people. Why don't you leave comments after you read this and tell me who your favourite directors are. Here's my top 3:

1. John Cassavetes
2. Samuel Fuller
3. Hal Ashby

Why these 3? Because John Cassavetes is obsessed with dissecting 'love' (why? - because, in his own words :- People always need a philosophy. "Philos" in Greek means love. "Ophy" means a study of something. So 'philosophy' is a study of love. That's all I'm interested in. That is love), and his films say so much and show so much on how to behave decently towards other people and towards each other. Because Samuel Fuller is the greatest moralist ever to make great films. Because Hal Ashby's films have a tenderness and truth that you can't find anywhere else. And finally because all 3 have incredible command of their technique and what they want to convey with it.

Why no Martin Scorsese or Francis Ford Coppolla or Orson Welles? Because Brian De Palma and even prime Spielberg (i.e. his commercial pop films like E.T and A.I) are more of a master than both Scorsese and Coppolla combined, and Alfred Hitchcock, Nicholas Ray and Billy Wilder deserve more respect than Welles, and even these people can't get into my top 3. Not even the great Charles Chaplin, Satyajit Ray, Yasujiro Ozu or Truffaut can do so.

So there it is folks. My top 3. C'mon, tell me yours. I'll be waiting.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

nope, nope. you can only see The Life Aquatic after I watch all those new romantic comedy DVDs you bought me.

~thegrump~

shahrul azwad said...

This is a hard question to ask. I like movies but I confessed that I didn't watch enough to make a good comparison on who is the best director but anyone can tell about his favourites of any kind. There's no need to think hard actually but somehow I've already think hard. I've better be spontaneous. What could be more spontaneous than telling about your favourites? So here it goes, with comments by you already taken into account. My top 3 favourite directors are:

1. Tim Burton
2. Quentin Tarantino
3. Robert Rodriguez

All of them are from the current generation. I am having trouble finding John Cassevettes as you already knew. I quite fond of Richard Linklater for Before Sunrise but I did not watch enough of his work to make a good assessment. Spielberg is always good but usually he rarely overwhelming but plain entertaining. Scorcese is good to a certain extent that I agreed to the argument I've read that Tarantino ripped off Scorcese but I find Scorcese (just like Coppolla) are the ones that make a one big hit of a movie (or series of movies) but seems can't do anything else better.
I love Burton for his obvious uniqueness, eccentricity, comical and even foolish style of movie making. The other two, I'm too tired to explain. Make a guess.

shazyra said...

My favourites are
1.Tim Burton
2.Majid Majidi
3.Samira Malmakhbaf ( i might get the family name wrong lah)
4. I know I only have 3 choice but take this as an optional choice- Akira Kurosawa

Satyajit Ray is also one of my fave especially his story, World of Apu. My no.1 choice is Burton and the reasons are similar to Azwad except that another reason why I like him is because of his daring, colorful and wild cinematic work. Think of A Nightmare Before Christmas. As for the two Iranian directors- Majid `s for his sensitive potrayal of children though there are sceptics alleging that he manipulates children as his central character in his movie (tak taulah kenapa) Samira pulak because of his feminist outlook in her work Five At Noon. Akira is self-explanatory- i guess so.There are also directors that I only like one of their many movies-like Pontoverco `s Battle of Algiers. A very relevant movie to the present issue of terrorist vs state terrorism. But all in all, I could say the ones I named above are my favourites.

Sorry if menyusahkan, but can you pass the cd that I want to buy to Suraya and I will get it from her? Thanks.

rizal suburbia said...

Not in order of preference:

pedro almadovar-multilayered (and very grand too!)storytelling;story within a story to strenghten the main theme but never overtly dragging

wong kar wai-making ordinary conventional stories, extraordinarily stylish and unconventional looking

...both have different styles and approach to films but left a strong mark as a film maker on myself as a film maker WANNABE!

mas.ainun said...

emm i don't watch too many movies too, but i know that i'm always excited to see what yasmin ahmad had in store! i love watching her movies because it stirs not only my mind, but my heart! =) great post!