Your 100 favorite foreign films

Create lists of the best, worst, favorites, etc... and request or share recommendations with other users. Add your Top 10 lists here!

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby A » Tue Jan 02, 2007 6:16 am

Going over my list, it looks as if I should also do this again in the near future. And this time ranked!
But where are the other members lists???

Definitely out of my Top 100 foreign films will be (listed alphabetically):

Alphaville, une trange aventure de Lemmy Caution "Alphaville" (1965 / Jean-Luc Godard / France)
Brother (1999 / Australia / Adam Benjamin Elliot)
Dare mo shiranai Nobody Knows (2004 / Japan / Hirokazu Koreeda)
La Bte "The Beast" (1975 / Walerian Borowczyck / France)
Los lunes al sol "Mondays in the Sun" (2002 / Fernando Leon de Aranoa / Spain)
Saint-Cyr "The Kings Daughters" (2000 / Patricia Mazuy / France)
Trois couleurs: Bleu "Three Colors: Blue" (1993 / Krzysztof Kieslowski / France, Poland, Switzerland, UK)

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby wpqx » Tue Jan 02, 2007 6:50 am

You know I forgot all about it. I've been watching so much lately that I can't help but feel any list will be obsolete soon. Granted nowadays it takes a lot to really crack a list, but I can't stop "researching". If I do make a list, for sure it'll be ranked.

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby wpqx » Tue Jan 02, 2007 9:06 am

Ok so I didn't include British films, but there are a few films in English, but their countries of origin are not the US, particularly Voyage in Italy, The Man With No Name Trilogy, and The Passenger. I made a conscious effort not to be influenced by previous lists, or putting films on just to put them on. My top ten hasn't changed much (a few films switched places), but the rest of the list is quite remarkably different. And John might be pleased to see that The Crucified Lovers (A Mizoguchi film) is my highest Japanese film, something I had no idea would happen when making this list.

1. 8 (1963 / Federico Fellini / Italy)
2. Weekend (1967 / Jean-Luc Godard / France, Italy)
3. Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980 / Rainer Werner Fassbinder / West Germany, Italy)
4. Napolon (1927 / Abel Gance / France)
5. To Live (1994 / Zhang Yimou / China)
6. La Dolce Vita (1960 / Federico Fellini / Italy)
7. Landscape in the Mist (1988 / Theo Angelopoulos / France, Italy, Greece)
8. The Conformist (1970 / Bernardo Bertolucci / France, Italy, West Germany)
9. A Generation/Kanal/Ashes and Diamonds (1954/1957/1958 / Andrzej Wajda / Poland)
10. The Man With a Movie Camera (1929 / Dziga Vertov / USSR)

11. Sans Soleil (1983 / Chris Marker / France)
12. The Color of Pomegranates (1969 / Sergei Parajanov / Armenia, USSR)
13. The Man With No Name Trilogy (1964/1965/1966 / Sergio Leone / Italy, Spain)
14. Au Hasard Balthazar (1966 / Robert Bresson / France)
15. The Exterminating Angel (1962 / Luis Buuel / Mexico)
16. The Seventh Seal (1957 / Ingmar Bergman / Sweden)
17. Jules and Jim (1962 / Francois Truffaut / France)
18. Ordet (1955 / Carl Theodor Dreyer / Denmark)
19. Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972 / Werner Herzog / West Germany, Peru)
20. Solaris (1972 / Andrei Tarkovsky / USSR)

21. City of God (2003 / Ktia Lund, Fernando Meirelles / Brazil)
22. The Mother and the Whore (1973 / Jean Eustache / France)
23. Voyage In Italy (1953 / Roberto Rossellini / Italy, France)
24. The Battle of Algiers (1966 / Gillo Pontecorvo / Algeria, Italy)
25. Last Tango in Paris (1972 / Bernardo Bertolucci / Italy, France)
26. The Grand Illusion (1937 / Jean Renoir / France)
27. Andrei Rublev (1966 / Andrei Tarkovsky / USSR)
28. The Red and the White (1967 / Mikls Jancs / Hungary, USSR)
29. The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928 / Carl Theodor Dreyer / France)
30. The Cranes are Flying (1957 / Mikhail Kalatozov / USSR)

31. Teorema (1968 / Pier Paolo Passolini / Italy)
32. Celine and Julie Go Boating (1974 / Jacques Rivette / France)
33. False Movement (1975 / Wim Wenders / West Germany)
34. Los Olvidados (1950 / Luis Buuel / Mexico)
35. The Crucified Lovers (1954 / Kenji Mizoguchi / Japan)
36. The Four Hundred Blows (1959 / Francois Truffaut / France)
37. M (1931 / Fritz Lang / Germany)
38. Wild Strawberries (1957 / Ingmar Bergman / Sweden)
39. La Ronde (1950 / Max Ophls / France)
40. Hard Boiled (1992 / John Woo / Hong Kong)

41. The Passenger (1975 / Michelangelo Antonioni / Italy, Spain)
42. The Traveling Players (1975 / Theo Angelopoulos / Greece)
43. Talk to Her (2002 / Pedro Almodovar / Spain)
44. Hero (2002 / Zhang Yimou / Hong Kong, China)
45. Pierrot le Fou (1965 / Jean-Luc Godard / France, Italy)
46. Ran (1985 / Akira Kurosawa / Japan, France)
47. The Shame (1968 / Ingmar Bergman / Sweden)
48. The Bicycle Thief (1949 / Vittorio De Seca / Italy)
49. Europa Europa (1991 / Agnieszka Holland / Germany, Poland, France)
50. The Cyclist (1989 / Mohsen Makhmalbaf / Iran)

51. Mouchette (1967 / Robert Bresson / France)
52. Happy Together (1997 / Wong Kar-Wai / Hong Kong)
53. Satantango (1994 / Bla Tarr / Germany, Hungary, Austria )
54. Love Affair: Or the Case of the Missing Switchboard Operator (1967 / Dusan Makavejev / Yugoslavia)
55. Death of a Bureaucrat (1966 / Toms Gutirrez Alea / Cuba, Spain)
56. Seven Samurai (1954 / Akira Kurosawa / Japan)
57. Children of Paradise (1945 / Marcel Carne / France)
58. Belle de Jour (1967 / Luis Buuel / France, Italy)
59. Persona (1966 / Ingmar Bergman / Sweden)
60. Xala (1975 / Ousmane Sembene / Senegal)

61. Rebels of the Neon God (1992 / Tsai Ming-Liang / Taiwan)
62. Orpheus (1950 / Jean Cocteau / France)
63. Early Summer (1951 / Yasujiro Ozu / Japan)
64. Diamonds of the Night (1964 / Jan Nemec / Czechoslovakia)
65. Wings of Desire (1987 / Wim Wenders / West Germany, France)
66. Spirited Away (2002 / Hayao Miyazaki / Japan)
67. Osaka Elegy (1936 / Kenji Mizoguchi / Japan)
68. Nights of Cabiria (1957 / Federico Fellini / Italy)
69. Distant Thunder (1973 / Satyajit Ray / India)
70. Hitler, a Film From Germany (1977 / Hans-Jrgen Syberberg / West Germany, France, UK)

71. The General Line (1929 / Sergei Eisenstein / USSR)
72. Flowers of Shanghai (1998 / Hou Hsiao-Hsien / Taiwan, Japan)
73. Boudu Saved From Drowning (1932 / Jean Renoir / France)
74. Beauty and the Beast (1946 / Jean Cocteau / France)
75. Lola Monts (1955 / Max Ophls / France, West Germany)
76. The Mirror (1974 / Andrei Tarkovsky / USSR)
77. Ulysses Gaze (1995 / Theo Angelopoulos / Greece, France, Italy)
78. Westfront 1918 (1930 / G. W. Pabst / Germany)
79. Pickpocket (1959 / Robert Bresson / France)
80. Boycott (1985 / Mohsen Makhmalbaf / Iran)

81. The World (2005 / Jia Zhang Ke / Japan, France, China)
82. Variety (1925 / E. A. Dupont / Germany)
83. Zvenigora (1928 / Alexander Dovzhenko / USSR, Ukraine)
84. Un Chien Andalou/L'ge d'Or (1928/1930 / Luis Buuel, Salvador Dali / France)
85. Marius/Fanny/Cesar (1931/1932/1936 / Alexander Korda, Marc Allgret, Marcel Pagnol / France)
86. Throne of Blood (1957 / Akira Kurosawa / Japan)
87. General Della Rovere (1959 / Roberto Rossellini / Italy, France)
88. Good Morning (1959 / Yasujiro Ozu / Japan)
89. Sandra of a Thousand Delights (1965 / Luchino Visconti / Italy)
90. Scenes from a Marriage (1973 / Ingmar Bergman / Sweden)

91. Metropolis (1927 / Fritz Lang / Germany)
92. Fanny and Alexander (1982 / Ingmar Bergman / Sweden)
93. After Life (1998 / Hirokazu Kore-eda / Japan)
94. The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant (1972 / Rainer Werner Fassbinder / West Germany)
95. Hara-kiri (1962 / Masaki Kobayashi / Japan)
96. In the Realm of the Senses (1976 / Nagisa Oshima / Japan, France)
97. Numro Deux (1975 / Jean-Luc Godard, Anne-Marie Miville / France)
98. Akira (1987 / Katsuhiro Otomo / Japan)
99. Underground (1995 / Emir Kustirica / West Germany, France, Hungary)
100. Irma Vep (1996 / Olivier Assayas / France)

and the unranked runner's up
Love (1971)
Raise the Red Lantern (1991)
The Emperor and the Assassin (1999)
Baran (2001)
Run, Lola Run (1998)
Fallen Angels (1995)
Gabbeh (1996)
Chungking Express (1994)
Ju Dou (1990)
The Decalogue (1988)
Cobra Verde (1987)
Das Boot (1981)
Kings of the Road (1976)
The Middleman (1975)
Sword of the Beast (1965)
The Phantom of Liberty (1974)
Z (1969)
Alphaville (1965)
Breathless (1960)
The Apu Trilogy (1954/1957/1959)
The Magician (1958)
Tokyo Story (1953)
Miracle in Milan (1951)
Rashomon (1950)
Rules of the Game (1939)
Open City (1945)
Faust (1926)
Hazan (1922)
Die Nibelugen (1924)
The Battleship Potemkin (1925)
Ugetsu (1953)
La Chienne (1931)
Olympia (1938)
Van Gogh (1991)
Ikiru (1952)
Juliet of the Spirits (1965)
Yojimbo (1961)
Gate of Flesh (1964)
La Chinoise (1967)
The Round Up (1965)
The Weeping Meadow (2004)
Kung Fu Hustle (2004)
Princess Mononoke (1997)
L'avventura (1960)
Perceval (1979)
Nobody Knows (2004)
House of Flying Daggers (2004)
The Testament of Dr. Mabuse (1933)
Les Diaboliques (1955)

By Director:
Bergman - 6
Buuel - 5
Fellini - 3
Godard - 3
Bresson - 3
Kurosawa - 3
Angelopoulos - 3

By Decade
20's - 8
30's - 9
40's - 3
50's - 21
60's - 25
70's - 17
80's - 9
90's - 11
2000's - 5

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby A » Tue Jan 02, 2007 3:20 pm

A very interesting and eclectic list, though I havent seen 54 out of your Top 100 yet. And I have seen only two films from your Top Ten. I promise that there will be some similarities with my new list.
There are rumors that the restored Berlin Alexanderplatz will be shown as a special presentation at this years Berlinale. We will see.

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby wpqx » Wed Jan 03, 2007 6:42 am

ok why in @#%$'s name do apostrophies keep turning into question marks?

Anyways I thought I'd try and offer some reasoning behind my picks.

1. 8 1/2

For a good 5 years this has been my favorite of all foreign films, and I'm not even sure I've seen it in its proper aspect ratio. Fellini the surrealist in my opinion far dwarfs the neorealist. 8 1/2 wanders from fantasy to reality with ease, and everything in it is bristling with life.

2. Weekend

Every so often when you see a film you realize that this is exactly what you hope to see in every film ever made. Godard's film combines the illogical, the experimental, the political, and of course my never ending love of extended takes. Godard had been experimenting since his debut, and frequently the results were mixed. For every Pierrot le Fou there was a Le Petit Soldat. None of his early films are bad, but they are all building to something, and for me the culmination of all of this came here. The crowning achievement in a brilliant career.

3. Berlin Alexanderplatz

Jumping up on my list is probably the least seen film on my list, at least with members here. A restoration project is underway so this will soon change, but allow me the opportunity to inflate its reputation more. Through all but the last episode Berlin Alexanderplatz is Fassbinder's best film. It contains all his frequent themes, the beaten woman, the boorish abusive man, and a veritable who's who of Fassbinder regulars. The last episode however, elevates the film to the crowning achievement in German cinema, and to discuss that final episode will not even come close to doing it justice.

4. Napoleon

Many people consider the final years of the silent cinema the peak of cinematic art. The medium was advancing, and this growth was evident in the final years. Many view Murnau's Sunrise as the peak of the form, but for me its Abel Gance's Napoleon. The first of a planned series of films on the historical figure. No film, probably ever is as experimental and the wonder that Gance created here seems comperable to revolution of the first edited film.

5. To Live

Many years ago this was my favorite foreign film. I watched it on a lark, reading the one sentence plot description. I new nothing of Yimou, nothing of the 5th Generation, but oh what a glorious film I saw. Within 15 minutes I was convinced that this was probably the saddest film ever made, but what wonderous visuals. No film since All Quiet on the Western Front hit me so hard emotionally, and for that this film will always be a favorite. I'm scared to watch it again, not only for how I'd react to it now, but to be that emotionally drained again.

6. La Dolce Vita

This is the reason why you need to re-watch films. For whatever reason, over inflated reputation, fatigue, I wasn't extremely moved with my first viewing of Fellini's opus. Maybe a year or two later I revisited it, and twenty minutes into the film I was convinced that it was one of the greatest singular visions I had seen. The film marked a turning point in Fellini's career, and Italian cinema in general. A decadent world of the rich and our obsession with them, and a contemporary parable for moral decay.

7. Landscape in the Mist

Well if you like long takes, then there is no way you can't enjoy Angelopoulos. There are films shorter than the average shot length in this film. It was my introduction to Angelopoulos, and remains one of my greatest cinematic experiences. In the course of a shot the film seems at times to shift generations. Yet the films most powerful moment comes from a static camera holding on a parked truck. Landscape is also the ultimate road movie, and for my money the best films with children as protaganists.

8. The Conformist

Well now its officially available on DVD, but for many years Bertolucci's masterpiece was unavailable. The best print coming from laserdisc, but how many of us have laserdisc players? Having first suffered through a poorly dubbed formatted to fit this screen bad transfer VHS I was spellbound. Having to wait years to see it, though I couldn't help but feel like I would have had a better reaction if I could have seen it sooner and in better conditions. Later on I got a chance to see the restored print, minus the English dubbing, and the scartches and realized that this was the masterpiece I had hoped. It may not pack the emotional devastation of Last Tango in Paris but visually and politically it is Bertolucci's best work. Combining all the best elements and experimentatin of his previous films without the excess of his later pictures.

9. A Generation/Kanal/Ashes and Diamonds

It may not be the first Polish film, but it's the first time that the international world took notice. The film isn't a linnear trilogy but each film is a different time, and they are chronological. The first focusing on the early resistance, the second is the most devastating film of the series on the last desperate days of the losing war, and the final on the transition from war to peace. Ashes and Diamonds gets the most attention, but Kanal is the centerpiece of the trilogy and the most devastating.

10. The Man With a Movie Camera

City symmphonies weren't new, but Vertov's film far transceneds the boundaries of that avant-garde subgenre. It is one of the hardest films to write about, and one of the most rewarding on repeat viewings. The film is pure cinema, and the most elaborate display of montage in all its glory, peaking just before the advent of sound and a radical clampdown on Soviet style. A film that rightly deserves the high praise its associated with, and far greater than Eisenstein's overblown and overhyped masterpiece Potemkin. I watched this film as a double feature with Potemkin, and although I was impressed with Eisenstein's film I was overwhelmed by Vertov's.

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby A » Wed Jan 03, 2007 10:33 pm

Thanks for the insight into your brain, wpqx.

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby A » Tue Aug 21, 2007 2:03 pm

Wow, i had quite forgotten what an exceptional Top 100 you've posted. Which films have you edited btw?

And you forgot to list Angelopoulos at the end, as you've also included three of his films (two of which i haven't seen yet). As a Theophile ( ) I had to mention it

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby wpqx » Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:34 pm

I haven't edited any of the films listed, that would alter everything since I numbered in order of preference, but if I ever do another list 71 Fragments will certainly make that list.

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby trevor826 » Wed Aug 22, 2007 5:58 am

Re: A Generation/Kanal/Ashes and Diamonds

I'm in total agreement with you on these and your praise for Kanal in particular. I found Ashes and Diamonds a little formulaic especially the finale which made me think I'd somehow switched to a Hollywood western or gangster flick, all very good films though.

Cheers Trev.

Re: Your 100 favorite foreign films

Postby wpqx » Wed Aug 22, 2007 6:39 pm

They certainly won me over on Wajda who I've been trying unsuccessfully to find something nearly as good from. These films might get contention as being three films that aren't a real "trilogy" but call it a three way tie.


Return to Lists and Recommendations

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests