#1  
Old 02-13-2013, 10:36 PM
Greatest Directorial Achievement?

I was looking through the other recently bumped thread on Kubrick where Quent mentions, I thought extremely interestingly, that Kubrick is not the greatest director of all time, but that 2001: A Space Odyssey is the Best Directed Film (singular) of all time.

So I have to imagine at least half the population of the boards simply won't have a response for a thread like this. But I propose it is an interesting question nevertheless. Typically we have a few threads which deal with directorial achievement. They almost always include body of work, but when they include individual achievements it is usually a big list like a top ten, or an "All time Oscars" gimmick; something, at least, to this extent. But here I say that I think it would be interesting to attempt the following: everyone is given one and only one choice. Gun to your head, what do you consider to be the (singular) Best Directed Film?* Everyone's post should just be a single title.

Last edited by Gordon; 02-13-2013 at 10:39 PM..
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  #2  
Old 02-13-2013, 11:07 PM
A Clockwork Orange
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  #3  
Old 02-13-2013, 11:16 PM
I'd agree that a good case can be made for 2001. It's hard to think of someone who was more innovative than Kubrick, really.

Also, an honorable-mention/shout-out to what I consider to be the best-directed film of the past 10-15 years: Children of Men.

Last edited by Reckoner; 02-13-2013 at 11:19 PM..
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  #4  
Old 02-13-2013, 11:24 PM
Silence Of The Lambs
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  #5  
Old 02-13-2013, 11:41 PM
Some of my favorite movies because of their direction -

2001: A Space Odyssey
Psycho
Raiders of the Lost Ark
Saving Private Ryan
Jaws
Pulp Fiction
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  #6  
Old 02-14-2013, 01:13 AM
The Lord of the Rings trilogy
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  #7  
Old 02-14-2013, 02:13 AM
Fincher brought Fight Club to life. I mean, he literally knocked it out of the park.'

But yeah I'd go with Kubrick's 2001 as the greatest directorial achievement of all time.
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  #8  
Old 02-14-2013, 04:55 AM
Hard to argue with 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Of course, I could just be a snob, only pretending to like and understand it just so I can look down on other people...
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  #9  
Old 02-14-2013, 12:01 PM
Some of you may be wondering why I went with A Clockwork Orange over 2001. It's a pretty tough call. 2001 was probably more difficult to pull off. However, I don't know if I've ever seen a director so in control and so assured as Stanley Kubrick was with A Clockwork Orange. From the framing to the blocking to the performances he elicited to the incredible tone he created to the exceptional pacing... I don't know if there is a better directed film than A Clockwork Orange. Add to that his fearlessness in addressing controversial issues, the challenge of adapting a novel full of (at times incomprehensible) slang, creating possibly the best use of voice over ever committed to film, and creating some of the most iconic images in the history of film. If it's not the best directed film of all-time, it's certainly up there.

Extra tidbit: After the first screening of A Clockwork Orange, Kubrick said, "I think it's my most... skillful film".
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  #10  
Old 02-15-2013, 08:03 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon View Post
I was looking through the other recently bumped thread on Kubrick where Quent mentions, I thought extremely interestingly, that Kubrick is not the greatest director of all time, but that 2001: A Space Odyssey is the Best Directed Film (singular) of all time.
Apart from what might be the "Best Directed Film of all time", my vote for the "Best Directed Film of the 21st Century" would be either:

Mulholland Drive (D. Lynch) or
There Will Be Blood (P.T.A.)
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  #11  
Old 02-15-2013, 08:12 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bourne101 View Post
Some of you may be wondering why I went with A Clockwork Orange over 2001.
IMO, there's a 3-way tie between "A Clockwork Orange", "2001", and "The Shining."

They represent 3 of the top 10 or 20 greatest masterpieces of all time, and for me, that's sufficiently definitive.
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  #12  
Old 02-15-2013, 03:32 PM
Can I narrow it down to five? I'm so bad at picking one.

2001: A Space Odyssey
Raging Bull
Citizen Kane

Apocalypse Now
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  #13  
Old 02-15-2013, 04:10 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by magjournal View Post
Raging Bull
Also a great choice.

Quote:
Originally Posted by magjournal View Post
Apocalypse Now
This is also up there, although it's kind of in its own category. Because the production was so insane and irresponsible, they ended up being able to capture the essence of the Vietnam war and create one of the greatest films ever made. Heart attacks, extreme weight loss, going excessively over-budget, suicide attempts, Dennis Hopper getting a 14 year old Laurence Fishburne hooked on heroin, cast/crew dropping acid and getting drunk/stoned frequently while shooting, freak storms destroying sets... the list goes on. There will never be another film like it. It's an odd film to rank amongst directorial efforts because there was no clear distinction between a good and a bad directorial decision on this film.
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  #14  
Old 02-15-2013, 04:25 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bourne101 View Post
Also a great choice.



This is also up there, although it's kind of in its own category. Because the production was so insane and irresponsible, they ended up being able to capture the essence of the Vietnam war and create one of the greatest films ever made. Heart attacks, extreme weight loss, going excessively over-budget, suicide attempts, Dennis Hopper getting a 14 year old Laurence Fishburne hooked on heroin, cast/crew dropping acid and getting drunk/stoned frequently while shooting, freak storms destroying sets... the list goes on. There will never be another film like it. It's an odd film to rank amongst directorial efforts because there was no clear distinction between a good and a bad directorial decision on this film.
Huh. Originally I wrote a little footnote but I forgot to tack it on to my post. But I found it in a word document.

*On this, I just want to point out the interesting question of language. I think the way we choose to frame this question largely determines the answer; though this is trivial, this is definitely the case (this is the reason why Analytic Philosophy has now been reduced to quibbling about the meanings of words). So for example if we say "Greatest Achievement" I think the answer may very well be something like Apocalypse Now given the sheer amount of nonsense Coppola had to put up with, on top of the final product he managed to muster out of such a colossal mess. However if we were to say for example the seemingly similar "Best Directed Film" we may be asking the question more like: what was the greatest artistic achievement in the final product, regardless of the trivialities of the set which we take to be tangential to the primary question. To this extent I think people might as well consider explaining in what sense they choose to tackle the question.
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  #15  
Old 02-15-2013, 05:44 PM
Well I picked Apocalypse Now because of Coppola's fantastic direction COUPLED with all of the production problems. The film was destined to be a mess, assuming it could even be finished, but Coppola managed to create a masterpiece.

As far as Raging Bull and go, they're just so incredibly directed. Raging Bull isn't even my favorite Scorsese film but I think his direction was better in that film than it was in Taxi Driver.

2001: A Space Odyssey is an easy choice, 'cuz Kubrick's technical ingenuity is just so astounding. No doubt the film would be easy to make today, but Kubrick was really creative in making some damn good practical effects.

Finally, Citizen Kane was one of my picks 'cuz Orson Welles really managed to set a million precedents and standards for film direction.
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  #16  
Old 02-15-2013, 06:27 PM
Hitchcock: P S Y C H O
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  #17  
Old 02-15-2013, 07:22 PM
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Originally Posted by Antonio141 View Post
Hitchcock: P S Y C H O
That's a good one. The sheer amount of labor and creativity that went into the shower scene is just astounding.
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  #18  
Old 02-17-2013, 06:26 PM
First to come to my head was The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Peter Jackson not only proved that the books were not "unfilmable" (a term which people are going to have to stop using), but made three films that really are brilliant artistic productions as much as they are huge commercial successes (and who could have predicted the latter).

I also would pick Clockwork over 2001, but thats maybe just because I think the changes from the book were excellent.

Lawrence of Arabia because Lean hasn't been mentioned yet.
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  #19  
Old 02-18-2013, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Natty View Post
First to come to my head was The Lord of the Rings trilogy. Peter Jackson not only proved that the books were not "unfilmable" (a term which people are going to have to stop using), but made three films that really are brilliant artistic productions as much as they are huge commercial successes (and who could have predicted the latter).
I feel like every time an adapted film comes out that gets acclaim, people always say, "This book was thought to be unfilmable," yet it's always filmable.
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  #20  
Old 02-18-2013, 10:32 PM
I'd have to agree with 2001. Kubrick also gets my vote for the greatest director of all time.
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  #21  
Old 02-18-2013, 11:15 PM
The Dark Knight Rises
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  #22  
Old 02-19-2013, 04:47 AM
.

Last edited by SS-Block; 03-31-2014 at 05:15 PM..
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  #23  
Old 02-26-2013, 08:15 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by magjournal View Post
Apocalypse Now
Good one.
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  #24  
Old 02-26-2013, 09:00 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by X-Frog View Post
The Dark Knight Rises
Oh I'm sorry, I should have put an asterix next to the title. I meant greatest directed film not by Chris Nolan, since otherwise we would be forced to exclusively talk about his films. I mean after all, what other director has ever managed the emotional nuance and moral subtlety of Mr. Nolan?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Natty View Post
Lawrence of Arabia because Lean hasn't been mentioned yet.
I have to admit this is precisely the sort of criteria that disgusts me. Of course we all know the Big-Official-List, and yes Lawrence of Arabia is on it. But the question is: you, alone, stuck in a vacuum, regardless of what anyone else says, with a single pick: what do you choose?
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  #25  
Old 02-27-2013, 05:14 PM
The usual suspects, for the most part:

2001: A Space Odyssey
Andrei Rublev
Citizen Kane
Last Year at Marienbad
Playtime
Ran
Sunrise
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  #26  
Old 03-02-2013, 01:52 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bourne101 View Post
Dennis Hopper getting a 14 year old Laurence Fishburne hooked on heroin
If that's true, then Dennis hopper is a complete piece of shit and I'm glad he's dead.

I think what Gordon said is accurate. It's not about what the film went through to get made, but about the finished product. With that said I would go with The Lord of The Rings trilogy.
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  #27  
Old 03-04-2013, 12:42 PM
Schindler's List
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  #28  
Old 03-05-2013, 08:54 AM
*cough*TITANIC*cough*
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  #29  
Old 03-05-2013, 08:58 AM
Léon
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  #30  
Old 03-09-2013, 01:34 PM
It's so boring to say it but...yeah, I'd have to go with 2001: A Space Odyssey.
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  #31  
Old 03-09-2013, 01:43 PM
.

Last edited by Bourne101; 03-09-2013 at 02:16 PM..
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  #32  
Old 03-09-2013, 06:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Bourne101 View Post
.
Colour me intrigued regarding the redacted contents .
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  #33  
Old 03-09-2013, 07:40 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon View Post
Colour me intrigued regarding the redacted contents .
I was just responding to the "I'm glad Dennis Hopper is dead" post, but I quickly realized that anyone saying something so infantile and ridiculous is not worth engaging in a conversation with.
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  #34  
Old 03-09-2013, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Bourne101 View Post
I was just responding to the "I'm glad Dennis Hopper is dead" post, but I quickly realized that anyone saying something so infantile and ridiculous is not worth engaging in a conversation with.
Good thinking. Never a great call to get into an argument with a man who wishes death upon total strangers.
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  #35  
Old 03-09-2013, 08:53 PM
Who are already dead.
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  #36  
Old 03-10-2013, 01:29 AM
If we're talking about a single scene, it has to be the POV robbery gone wrong that starts the beginning of Strange Days. Listen to the audio commentary on just how monumentally difficult it was to stage and film and I dare you to walk away not impressed.

If it's an entire movie, I have to give it to The Abyss - the most notoriously difficult movie shoot of all time. Shot on as grand a scale as anything of its time - and done so all underwater.
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  #37  
Old 03-12-2013, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Bourne101 View Post
I was just responding to the "I'm glad Dennis Hopper is dead" post, but I quickly realized that anyone saying something so infantile and ridiculous is not worth engaging in a conversation with.
Probably a good thing you side stepped that one all together. You would have gotten your ass handed to you anyways.
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  #38  
Old 03-12-2013, 02:58 PM
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Originally Posted by SL Dubbs View Post
Probably a good thing you side stepped that one all together. You would have gotten your ass handed to you anyways.

Last edited by Bourne101; 03-12-2013 at 03:10 PM..
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  #39  
Old 03-30-2013, 01:18 AM
Apocalypse Now
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  #40  
Old 04-06-2013, 09:34 AM
I'd like to throw consideration in for an amazing film I just saw like a month ago (I haven't been here as often lately), Ingmar Bergman's The Seventh Seal. I love everything about it, and that final shot of the dance of death is so poignant, beautiful, and haunting.


Tapatalking from my bed. Ya mutha says hi.
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