What country has the best foreign films?

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Re: What country has the best foreign films?

Postby auteur » Mon Jul 14, 2003 2:41 am

You make excellent points. I'm thinking about your comment that most directors' primary audience is "their people" and how it must feel to be one of the few whose films are better-received abroad. Abbas Kiarostami is the major director that comes to mind. Some of his films aren't even SHOWN in Tehran. At least Americans get a chance to watch Woody Allen's films and embrace them, and reject them as deserved.

For me, Hou is in a class by himself. Of course he is "informed and influenced" by others, no one lives in a vacuum. But Hou is a true original, perhaps the most inventive narrative filmmaker working today. Artists like Hou are seldom given enough credit until old or dead, because they push the medium forward rather than repeat the old, comfortable modes. I still remember 2001 getting horrid reviews from notables like Pauline Kael.

Re: What country has the best foreign films?

Postby groom_daniel » Mon Jul 14, 2003 9:53 pm

Hou Hsiao-hsien seemed to have a better reputation at the end of the 1980's, in a 1988 New York Film Festival World Critics Poll, he was voted one of three directors who would most likely shape cinema in the coming decades. Shortly thereafter, he produced Raise the Red Lantern, and maybe the success of that film is the reason why New Zealand has every single Chinese 5th Generation film ever made, yet nothing by Hou Hsiao-hsien.

To see Hou's films, I have to rely on friends overseas, or my University's audio visual library, where I saw Edward Yang's A Brighter Summer's Day (which hasn't been released on DVD, although I read someone saying they had a laserdisc version from Hong Kong). It's really strange to me that someone who was the darling of the international film festival circuit in the 80's is no widely unavailable. I suppose it goes to show how far video stores have come throughout the 90's in terms of stocking festival and foreign films, but it's awfully frustrating. They still lean heavily towards European cinema.

Re: What country has the best foreign films?

Postby auteur » Thu Jul 17, 2003 3:27 am

WESTERN European cinema in particular.

Re: What country has the best foreign films?

Postby felipejuanfroilan » Sun Aug 24, 2003 10:39 pm

I think the country is France. It is difficult to find another one where so many directors have tried to create their own formal languuage in creating films, wether we like them or not.
Moreover, French film industry receives official support from longtime ago. Their films obtain 35% of share in their own country, while other countries like Spain see that their films get hardly a 12% every year.
The problem is that it is possible to see good cinema in France, but also pretty bad one. The excessive dependance on literature texts was critiziced by Truffaut in th 50s, but it continues. You can see the filmography of Gerard Depardieu to see that.
About the best cinema in the recent years, maybe the british one, with all the singular contributions from social cinema, Ken Loach, Mike Leigh, and now Stephen Daldry with Billy Elliot.

Re: What country has the best foreign films?

Postby dlbu » Mon Aug 25, 2003 6:15 pm

If you are a serious viewr ,please go through these movies--Cinema Paradiso/Bicycle thieves/Pather panchali/Seven Samurai/A short film about love; killing------Actually every country is making it's own good movies.We have to search & find them to experiance the feelings.

Re: What country has the best foreign films?

Postby nikki-1 » Mon Dec 15, 2003 6:54 pm

The question almost contradicts the reason people prefer foreigh films considering people who watch foreign films tend to be more open-minded and selective based on the content not the nationality of the actors.

You will find great foreign films from all points of the globe.
Eat, Drink, Man, Woman
Raise the red lantern

Savage Nights

Perhaps, a better response will be received if you ask about the film subject. Ex: Martial Arts - don't look in Africa coz we don't make those. :)
Drug Abuse - Trainspotting, Requiem for a dream



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