Choosing films to rewatch

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Choosing films to rewatch

Postby Sara » Wed Nov 08, 2006 1:40 pm

I have spent the last 2 years (thanks to Netflix and this forum) watching lots of wonderful films. In fact sometimes it has seemed like a whirlwind of movies.

Now I am thinking of taking a few weeks off from new movies, and choosing 20 films that I really love and watching them again.

I have not chosen my list yet. There are so many to choose from.

But I will ask you. Which 20 movies would you like to see and study again? Hard choices. Maybe unfair to ask or to try to do this. But I want to devote a bit of time to rewatching the best of the best.

Should I pick only one movie per director? What would you do? (Only ONE Kurosawa??? Bergman?? Fellini?? That's painful. Perhaps I'll just not make that restriction on myself.)

Want to share lists?


Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby A » Wed Nov 08, 2006 2:01 pm

I am rewatching films on a regular basis, and not only films I previously enjoyed. It has something to do with observing how your tastes and perceptions change overtime, as well as the fact that i think every work of art deserves multiple viewings for its full appreciation.
In fact I've been rewatching more films in the past few months than watching new ones.
If you want to rewatch 20 movies in during the next few weeks, I'd suggest that you choose from some categories:
a) films you really want to see again
b) personal favorites
c) films you are not sure you have "grasped"
d) films you forgot you saw them
e) films about which you may change your opinion on a rewatch (in which direction is another question)
f) films you didn't like, but which others consider worthwhile.

I'm sure there are more possibilities, but I can't think of them right now.
Would be great if you could talk a bit about your feelings and experiences when you have rewatched some movies and are able to compare the two experiences of it.

Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby MikLosk » Wed Nov 08, 2006 3:04 pm

Hey, Sara, so do I. I've recently decided to rewatch my favourite movies to make sure of their perfection and to write notes on them. You can see my first effort - review on L'Eclisse - in "Classic Cinema" section. Since there is already review on Picnic at Hanging Rock and Otto e mezzo there (and also review on Giorgino in "World Cinema" section), this is the fourth part of my ambitious project "25 Flawless Masterpieces of World Cinema". Although I'm not sure if I would post these reviews often. They exhaust me very much. If you're interested in my list of "flawless masterpieces", here it is.

(no particular order)

I deleted this list to make thread "25 flawless masterpieces" more intriguing

Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby wpqx » Wed Nov 08, 2006 6:07 pm

Well off the top of my head some films I'd love to watch again for any of the reasons A mentioned would be

Diary of a Country Priest (Bresson)
The Mirror (Tarkovsky)
All About My Mother (Almodovar)
Blow-Up (Antonioni)
The General (Keaton)
The Awful Truth (McCarey)
Breaking the Waves (Von Trier)
The Apu Trilogy (Ray)
In a Lonely Place (Nicholas Ray)
The Apartment (Wilder)
Persona (Bergman)
Rear Window (Hitchcock)
Natural Born Killers (Stone)
To Be or Not To Be (Lubitsch)

I know there are more, but these are all films for one reason or another I'd like another look at.

Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby Sara » Wed Nov 08, 2006 11:03 pm

Thanks for all the response.

A, I like your suggestion to watch, along with favorites, films we may not have fully grasped.

That said, I think the Bergman films are the first I want to rewatch. My favorites were Winter Light, Seventh Seal, Wild Strawberries, and of course Fanny and Alexander. But the ones I did not fully grasp perhaps were Persona or Cries and Whispers.

I think the Fellini films that I loved most were Nights of Cabiria and maybe Amacord. But the one I never got a real feel for was 8 1/2 or the one where they all got on a great ship - can't remember the name.

And for Tarkovsky, I loved all of the films of his I have seen except one. But I will not flatter myself by saying I grasped the full scope of The Mirror, Andrei Rublev, the Sacrifice, or Nostalghia. (I did not like Solaris and will not do a guilt trip on myself by making myself watch that again.)

As for Kurosawa - I have loved all of his films. Ran was my favorite, followed by Red Beard, Dreams, Rashoman, Kagemusha, Yojimbo, Throne of Blood - so many. I don't know which to pick here. I'd like to revisit them all!

So I am working on my list. Thanks to all of you for giving me your "want to see again" lists.

Thanks also for listening to me "muse" aloud.


Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby wpqx » Wed Nov 08, 2006 11:14 pm

Traditionally films on my to see again list are better phrased as films I slept through the first time. I shamefully admit to sleeping through parts of probably every Tarkovsky film the first time around. I'm a little dismayed at your thoughts on Solaris, considering I think its his best film, although I'm a bit of a minority on this site for that. Of Fellini's films, I'd say 8 1/2 is the film that offers the most out of multiple viewings, and that's not just because its my favorite foreign film ever. Its much denser and multi-layered than his other films and therefore has more to pick at.

Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby Sara » Thu Nov 09, 2006 7:08 pm


I know what you mean about wanting to rewatch films you "slept through." So many great films you have to really work at - and so many times I have had to go back on the DVD and start over because I got lost - or dozed.

So now that so many of you have spoken, I think I will change my plan to include 8 films I really enjoyed easily - and 12 that I know are great but which I still need to work at.

As for Tarkovsky, all of his films are so beautiful. But I had to really work at watching and grasping them. (All but the Steamroller and the Violin. That was fun to see.) But Andrei Rublev, the Mirror, and Nostalghia are not easy films to understand - but so worth every miniute you spend with them.

So now I will not do it all in 2 weeks as planned. Maybe 1 or 2 "rewatches" a week for as long as it takes.

First off, I think I will watch Tarkovsky's Sacrifice again. That one was hard. But you know, I taped (off of TV) a documentary of Tarkovsky's filming and thoughts on the Sacrifice. (He was dying at the time. But still so full of life. It was filmed at his home and he was in bed surrounded by his friends.) I am so happy I taped this some years ago. (I never fully watched it, but it will be a great companion to watching the Sacrifice.)

Thanks to you all. Your thoughts and your love of good movies inspire me.


Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby wpqx » Thu Nov 09, 2006 9:31 pm

I have that same documentary and it is rather enlightening. Made me want to re-watch the film. I just found out my career at DePaul is rapidly coming to an end, so I need to raid the library with a vengence if I'm going to see everything I want by semester's end.

Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby arsaib4 » Fri Nov 10, 2006 1:11 am

Nice thread, Sara.

Here's a short list of films I don't mind watching over and over for some of the same reasons that've been mentioned above. (These aren't necessarily the films I consider to be the Best.)

Les Vampires - Feuillade
Apocalypse Now - Coppola
L'Atalante - Vigo
The Rules of the Game - Renoir
Chinatown - Polanski
Blue Velvet - Lynch
Red Desert - Antonioni
Mouchette - Bresson
Sunrise - Murnau
M - Lang

Re: Choosing films to rewatch

Postby wpqx » Fri Nov 10, 2006 2:39 am

Forgot about Blue Velvet that's been in my to watch pile for years. By that I mean my to re-watch pile, ever since the last special edition DVD came out. Sunrise was certainly one of the best films to benefit from a second viewing from me, it helped tremendously. Rules of the Game I've seen three times I believe, and it wasn't until that third time that it really clicked, maybe it was that new illustrious print courtesy of Criterion. Also can't ever turn down any opportunity to watch Apocalypse Now, anywhere, ever. The new DVD that combines both versions is still shrinkwrapped and I'm just waiting to meet someone who utters the magic words "I've never seen that" for me to bust it out. That film's whole dynamic has changed for me. I used to be bored and dismayed by the ending. Now I can't wait for Brando to show up, and have chills down my spine with every line of demented poetry he speaks enshrouded in darkness. My god Coppola was completely out of his mind when he shot that, but it works so well, hence the reason the film's still in my top ten. Chinatown is another film I have wrapped on DVD waiting to be watched. I have seen it twice but I'm yet to watch it in its proper aspect ratio, so some may claim I haven't really seen it at all.
Anyways I have to drop out of college after this quarter due to overwhelming financial issues, so I'm getting nicely wasted tonight, I mean really drunk. I surprised myself by having 5 beers left in my fridge, and I'm gonna probably drink all of them then go out to get drunk, so don't mind me, I can be an alcoholic tonight, I have a reason.

In case you're wondering I'm drinking Stella Artois, and if you want to know where I heard about it, you guessed it from a commercial before a movie in the Highland Park Landmark Theater. Leave it to a high brow movie theater to introduce me too what is surely the finest beer on earth, the @#%$ is so smooth, but now I sound like an alcoholic, don't mind me, I ramble. My friends are already at the bar, and I got more drinking to do.


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