Friday, November 14, 2003

another countdown

aranyak points me to rediff's syndicated mention of a Guardian feature titled "The world's 40 best directors". The panel of critics (Peter Bradshaw, Xan Brooks, Molly Haskell, Derek Malcolm, Andrew Pulver, B Ruby Rich and Steve Rose) have put together this list, which mercifully does not include Steven Spielberg. The burning question is: Why 40?? And I definitely disagree with the casual use of the word "best". A more appropriate title just based on the names and the ouevre would have been "some of the most-talked about filmmakers in the last X years" (where X could be some number less than 10). While "veterans" like Lynch and Scorsese (I must admit that seeing the two up there on top does make me happy) and Cronenberg (then again, why did he slip down?) have been around for a while, entrants like the Wachowski brothers, David Fincher, Spike Jonze, Michael Moore, Paul Thomas Anderson and Wes Anderson (two very good and strong reasons for me to close my browser window and proceed to other chores) and Gus Van Sant have had a relatively short time in the filmmaking space. The variety of the list is refreshing (for lists full of pandering and self-congratulation consult the AFI).

But the rediff report slips a bit: Here are a few that missed the list: Gus Van Sant ... He's down there at #40. And their list of omissions includes people who mostly deserved to stay out (Steven Spielberg, Anthony Minghella, Baz Luhrmann, Ridley Scott).

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