Great DIrectors Worst Films

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Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby gratefultiger » Sun May 04, 2003 10:44 pm

Antonioni..Zabriskie Point (even the music of the Grateful Dead,Pink Floyd& John Fahey) can't save this turkey,this is the type of stuff that gives old hippies & radicals a bad name visually good but the acting & ridiculous scipt no wonder john Fahey punched the director out!

2.Pasolini.. SALO.. i take the anti fascism on board, but he went too far for me on this one.

3.Fassbinder... Querelle ..colorful but essentially dull queer homage i forgive rainer as he was obviously on the way out by this time.


Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby john-5 » Wed May 07, 2003 9:31 am

I agree about Zabriskie and Querelle (i'm not keen on several Fassbinder) but Salo i consider- disgusting as it is- above average Pasolini. His weakest for me are Canterbury Tales, and Hawks and Sparrows.

I love several of Wenders' earlier films, and though many may not consider him a "great" director even for his best work, his decline has been a terrible disappointment.

Fellini Casanova (and some of his other later films are self-indulgent, repetitive doodling).
Coppola: Jack
Bresson: The Devil Probably
Bertolucci: Last Tango in Paris.
I also find it hard to believe that a great director could have made Kundun.

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby auteur » Wed May 07, 2003 11:36 am

[i]Juliet of the Spirits[/i] marked the beginning of Fellini's second phase when his excesses became liabilities. Soon he began to use his name in the titles. Fellini became a commodity. I also agree with most of your other choices. I was flabbergasted by your inclusion of two favorites: [i]Last Tango in Paris[/i] and [i]Kundun[/i]. Given your excellent opinions elsewhere in this forum, I promise to be open minded about any explication you may wish to provide.

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby john-5 » Fri May 09, 2003 5:40 am

Well, i thought Kundun and Last Tango would raise some eyebrows- as they don't really belong with duds. I must admit it's some time since i saw Last Tango; despite the great Storaro as cinematographer, i found it cold and tedious in the extreme, and i've never been Brando's biggest fan. Still, Bertolucci is an intelligent film-maker, so it may be largely a personal response. Kundun; let down by a strain of rosy sentimentality- the screenplay didn't help- and it relied too heavily on picturesque images. For long sections the editing, camerawork and overall cinematic expression seemed less inspired than i would normally expect from Scorsese. I thought the early scenes were weak. As i said, it's not a dud, but by the director's standards, a disappointment.

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby bigpoppa_2059 » Thu May 15, 2003 4:56 am

Come on're telling me City of Women, Armacord and Juliet of the Spirits aren't masterpieces? I would MUCH rather watch Fellini's post 8 1/2 films over his early neorealist pictures any day of the week. There is more imagination and creativity in ten minutes of And The Ship Sails On than most of The White Sheik or Il Bidone. Just my opinion.
Truffaut - Farenheit 451 (He loved the book, but this doesen't even FEEL like he was into it. Boring)
Kurosawa - Mayadayo (he should've quit after Kagemusha)
Ford - 3 Godfathers & 7 Women
Kubrick - The Shining

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby wpqx » Sun May 18, 2003 2:50 am

I am shocked to find Three Godfathers and the Shining in your worst list big poppa. For Ford I would probably pick Stagecoach, which is a waste of time and space, although it still might not be his worst. The Lady Vanishes is the worst of Hitchcock, although "gasp" Vertigo is a close second. Raiders of the Lost Ark from Speilberg. The White Sheik from Fellini, Sgt. York from Hawks, My Fair Lady from Cukor, and To Be or Not To Be from Lubitsch. I know many people are turning into the incredible Hulk reading this, but I feel the same way about your constant Fellini and Bergman bashing.

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby Gaz » Sun May 18, 2003 10:02 am

Not sure I'd quite agree about My Fair Lady and To Be Or Not To Be...

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby auteur » Mon May 19, 2003 4:22 am

This thread is obviously designed to ellicit extreme views. I'll do my best to strike a moderate tone. I derive pleasure from isolated scenes and images from Fellini's post 8 1/2 period. But none of this films is sustained and coherent enough to measure up to earlier efforts. Granted, "White Sheik" is no masterpiece. Fellini, who had no intention of becoming a director, was handed the script by a desperate producer, when Antonioni turned it down. It's quite charming though. Masterpieces like Nights of Cabiria and 8 1/2 were fully realized conceptions with much to say about post-war Italy, the creative process, social and economic pressures upon the artist, etc. Too many of his latter films celebrate the grotesque for its own sake without the depth of feeling and purpose of a film such as Todd Browning's Freaks. But all of Fellini's films are worth seeing, if only intermittently. I plan to view Amacord again, as I recall it fondly. Bigpoppa may have a point.
I am currently watching Kundun again. Will post soon.
I know film appreciation is subjective, but to call Lady Vanishes and Vertigo the worst Hitch is bizarre indeed.

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby john-5 » Mon May 19, 2003 7:11 pm

Oh-oh, Kundun re-viewing; i hope i haven't in any way disturbed your pleasure. A quick caveat/excuse; films need to be watched in the right receptive frame of mind, which i wasn't really in this case, but still, so much is subjective.

Re: Great DIrectors Worst Films

Postby auteur » Tue May 20, 2003 6:23 am


I was able to find common ground with John-5's comments re:[i]Kundun[/i], a film I admire that he finds somewhat disappointing, albeit based on a casual viewing. For starters, we agree on the futility of avoiding being subjective. It's best to become aware of one's biases and predilections. My favorite critics acknowledge and reveal theirs, resulting in a richer experience for the reader. In that spirit, I'll say that I find the content of this film-the plight of Tibetans, the life of the Dalai Lama, the dogma and rituals of Tibetan Buddhism-utterly fascinating and important. I understand your complaint about [i]Kundun[/i] being "let down by a strain of rosy sentimentality" in that the Tibetans are depicted in an exceedingly positive light, almost without blemish. The scenes involving Kundun as a child are beatific. The Chinese government officials are depicted here as evil imperialists. My opinion is that there is a lot of truth in this presentation. Tibetans after all have a history of non-violence dating back to the first millennium and sub-human atrocities committed by the Chinese communist government in the 1950s are well documented. I also agree that the film "relies heavily on picturesque images", but I don't find that objectionable. And your comment would seem to apply to a film we both admire:[i]The Color of Pomegranates[/i].
Watching [i]Kundun[/i] again, I enjoyed the interplay between image and music, both Phillip Glass' score and traditional local music. There are two particularly brilliant scenes. One involves cutting back and forth betweeen the despairing leader being told of Chinese atrocities("children are being forced to kill their parents, nuns and monks are made to fornicate in the streets" and snippets of the horror. The other is the long sequence towards the end showing Kundun's departure from Tibet and his voyage of exile to India.

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