Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Top 50 Directors: Part II (#40-31)

40. Guillermo Del Toro



Another stylistic director, Guillermo Del Toro's flair and his incredible use of vibrant colors and contrast always make for a spectacular viewing experience. Definitely one of my favorite "fantasy" directors (even more than Peter Jackson, so don't hold your breath waiting for him to show up on this list).

Favorite movies:
- Pan's Labyrinth
- Cronos
- The Devil's Backbone





39. Orson Welles



Starting off your career with something like Citizen Kane is definitely a step in the right direction, but the fact that Welles was able to follow it up over the coming years with other classics makes him a top-notch director in my book. His brilliant use of tricky camera angles and tracking shots (most notably the opening scene in Touch of Evil) is a tendency that I find myself constantly admiring. And I do feel it's worth mentioning that he was an incredible actor, as well.

Favorite movies:
- Citizen Kane
- Touch Of Evil
- Chimes At Midnight





38. Jean-Luc Godard



One of the pioneering directors in the French New Wave movement, watching Godard's movies can sometimes be a chore, but the raw style and innovation put into making them make them worthwhile. Though I have not seen many of his movies, the few I have seen have left quite an impression on me.

Favorite movies:
- Breathless
- Alphaville
- Contempt





37. Peter Weir



Among the most famous Australian directors, Peter Weir has continually managed to release strong dramatic material for over 30 years. Though I found a few of his movies less than enthralling (Witness and The Mosquito Coast, for example), I still cannot deny his greater work, which stand among some of my favorites of all-time.

Favorite movies:
- The Truman Show
- Dead Poets Society
- Gallipoli





36. Clint Eastwood



Though his past few attempts have been less-than-stellar, Clint Eastwood's spree during the mid-2000s resulted in several of the best movies of the decade. As much as I admire him as an actor, I genuinely believe he is a far greater director, who manages to bring his own flair into all of his work, never producing anything less than solid material.

Favorite movies:
- Letters From Iwo Jima
- Mystic River
- Million Dollar Baby





35. Roman Polanski



Signs of Polanski's mental instability are always present in his movies, which often implement disturbing themes, such as rape, incest, and satanism, but that in no way impairs his ability to produce effective material -- in fact, one could say it sets him apart. Although his most recent outing, Carnage, was certainly a disappointment.

Favorite movies:
- Chinatown
- Rosemary's Baby
- The Pianist





34. Darren Aronofsky



Definitely one of the best directors of the past ten years, Darren Aronofsky's uncanny psycho-dramatic craftsmanship sets him apart from most current directors. With only 5 directorial efforts so far, Aronofsky shows potential to be one of the premiere directors of our time.

Favorite movies:
- The Fountain
- The Wrestler
- Requiem For A Dream





33. John Huston



Director of some of the most famous Bogart movies, John Huston has a successful career spanning over 40 years. Directing such genres as noir, western, adventure, comedy, and straight-up drama, his range stretched beyond that of most directors on this list.

Favorite movies:
- Treasure Of The Sierra Madre
- The Maltese Falcon
- The African Queen





32. Jason Reitman



Blending comedic and dramatic elements to perfection, I find myself enjoying Reitman's movies more than just about any other director. Though I have only seen three of his movies to date, I feel his position on this list is justified. In the past ten years, few directors have impressed me as much as Jason Reitman.

Favorite movies:
- Up In The Air
- Juno
- Thank You For Smoking





31. Charlie Chaplin



Often considered the greatest silent film star, Charlie Chaplin's work behind the camera impresses me far more than than his work on-screen. Directing classic satires along with the most enjoyable and heartwarming movies of the silent era, Chaplin was one of the greatest entertainers of all-time.

Favorite movies:
- City Lights
- Modern Times
- The Gold Rush
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