not so popular films

In yesterday’s post, I mentioned a film reviewer in Chicago that I’ve been rather impressed with over the years. I’ve not read him very often, but every time I do, I am impressed with his criticism and the thought he brings to film analysis. The person in question is Jonathan Rosenbaum, who wrote for The Chicago Reader until he retired in 2008. Though he’s retired, he continues to write either via his own site, or the occasional book.

In 1998, in response to a list of 100 best US movies published by the American Film Institute, produced his own list of 100 US movies. Prior to the actual listing, Rosenbaum has included a lengthy essay which is well worth reading, both for its discussion of the AFI list and his own assessment of American movies. Of Rosenblum’s 100 American movies, I have seen 13, maybe 12. There’s also a list of his 100 essential movies [and an annotated version], in chronological order (those I’ve seen are in bold):

Le Tunnel sous la Manche (Melies)
Les Vampires (Feuillade)
Tih Minh (Feuillade)
Foolish Wives (Stroheim)
Greed (Stroheim)
Die Nibelungen (Lang)
Sunrise (Murnau)
The Docks of New York (Sternberg)
Spione (Lang)
Arsenal (Dovzhenko)
Lonesome (Fejos)
City Lights (Chaplin)
M (Lang)
La Nuit du Carrefour (Renoir)
Ivan (Dovzhenko)
I Was Born, but.. (Ozu)
Love Me Tonight (Mamoulian)
Hallelujah, I’m a Bum (Milestone)
Sylvia Scarlett (Cukor)
Make way for Tomorrow (McCarey)
La Regle du Jeu (Renoir)
Story of the Late Chrysanthemums (Mizoguchi)
Christmas in July (Sturges)
Citizen Kane (Welles)
The Magnificent Ambersons (Welles)
Day of Wrath (Dreyer)
Heaven Can Wait (Lubitsch)
The Seventh Victim (Robson)
Ivan the Terrible 1+2 (Eisenstein)
The Best Years of Our Lives (Wyler)
Monsieur Verdoux (Chaplin)
Spring in a Small Town (Fei Mu)
Stars in my Crown (Tourneur)
The Steel Helmet (Fuller)
The Big Sky (Hawks)
Othello (Welles)
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Hawks)
The Naked Spur (Mann)
The Sun Shines Bright (Ford)
Johnny Guitar (N.Ray)
Rear Window (Hitchcock)
The Saga of Anatahan (Sternberg)
Sansho the Bailiff (Mizoguchi)
Track of the Cat (Wellman)
Ordet (Dreyer)
Guys and Dolls (Mankiewicz)
The Killing (Kubrick)
A Man Escaped (Bresson)
India (Rossellini)
Breathless (Godard)
Hiroshima mon Amour (Resnais)
Rio Bravo (Hawks)
The Tiger of Eschnapur/The Indian Tomb (Lang)
Cloud-Capped Star (Ghatak)
Shadows (Cassavetes)
Last Year at Marienbad (Resnais)
A Wife Confesses (Masumura)
Eclipse (Antonioni)
The House is Black (Farrokhzad)
Gertrud (Dreyer)
Au Hasard Balthazar (Bresson)
Black Girl (Sembene)
Playtime (Tati)
The Young Girls of Rochefort (Demy)
L’Amour Fou (Rivette)
Out 1 (Rivette)
La Région Centrale (Snow)
Avanti (Wilder)
Out 1:Spectre (Rivette)
F for Fake (Welles)
Parade (Tati)
Celine and Julie go Boating (Rivette)
Barry Lyndon (Kubrick)
Providence (Resnais)
Doomed Love (Oliveira)
Perceval le Gallois (Rohmer)
Stalker (Tarkovsky)
Orderly or Disorderly (Kiarostami)
Too Early, Too Late (Straub, Huillet)
Love Streams (Cassavetes)
Manuel on the Island of Wonders (Ruiz)
Mix-Up (Romand)
Mélo (Resnais)
Where is the Friend’s House? (Kiarostami)
Yeelen (Cissé)
Distant Voices, Still Lives (Davies)
A Tale of the Wind (Ivens)
The Asthenic Syndrome (Muratova)
Close-up (Kiarostami)
Nouvelle Vague (Godard)
Actress (Kwan)
A Brighter Summer Day (Yang)
The Puppetmaster (Hou)
Satantango (Tarr)
Dead Man (Jarmusch)
When it Rains (Burnett)
Inquiétude (Oliveira)
The Wind will Carry Us (Kiarostami)
Platform (Jia Zhangke)
A.I. Artificial Intelligence (Spielberg)

Total 10/100 – much, much lower than yesterday’s list :-) There’s a lot on this list that I want to see too, not to mention a bunch I’ve never heard of.

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