Flawless filmmakers

Baz Luhrmann; Moulin Rouge, Romeo + Juliet, Strictly Ballroom

Luc Besson; Subway, Nikita, Leon, The Fith Eliment
though maybe he blew it with The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc or some of his small release films that I havn’t seen.

I knew I’d forget someone weird I liked. His next movie is called The Fountain and I think involves Incas and time travel in some way, as I vaguely remember the Newsweek story. Hugh Jackman stars.

Yeah, I left off the first three because they’re not very well known. I do want to see Barry Lyndon - I’ll just have to annoy a friend who has that Kubrick boxed set. Not that I wouldn’t want to see the oldest ones; you make The Killing sound interesting. A lot of these guys made other films nobody saw and I was trying to keep my sample size small. You’re also right about Spartacus, and it shows. If we chop that off I think his batting average improves quite a bit.

Ah, now there’s an interesting pick. I didn’t see Bottle Rocket either, but I’ve seen the others. I didn’t love any of them or laugh very much, but he does this weird, sad irony thing that’s really unique, though. And I think I liked Life Aquatic because Bill Murray embodied that so well. Out of nowhere (as far as I know), I think Murray has become a really great actor. And for that reason I think you’re exactly right about the “genuine emotion” thing.

Speaking of Bill Murray, some people might want to consider Sophia Copolla. I can’t nominate her because I didn’t see The Virgin Suicides. But I know that and Lost in Translation both got good receptions and I did love LiT, so I figured some Doper out there had to see and like both movies.

As Marley23 notes, anyone with a large body of work is going to have some duds. That said, I submit Mr. Billy Wilder as having made an extraordinary number of flawless films. Consider Double Indemnity, The Lost Weekend, Sunset Blvd., Stalag 17, Ace in the Hole, Some Like It Hot, The Apartment. Amazing!

Up until The Ladykillers, Joel Cohen had never directed a film I didn’t like.

Woody Allen’s got more wonderful films than most of the names mentioned, although I’ll grant you that September and Hollywood Ending aren’t much to write home about. (But by no means bad filmd.) Oh, and also I’ve never seen Interiors, so I’m not sure about that one.


Having seen many, though not all, of their films, I’d nominate **Billy Wilder ** and Abbas Kiarostami. Together at last!

Wilder made plenty of so-so films, but Kiss Me Stupid is absolutely horrible. Kiarostami deserves better company (Howard Hawks, say?)

I may take some shit for this, but how about Jim Jarmusch? I have seen most of his work and have always enjoyed what I’ve seen.

Eh, nobody’s perfect.

A few more directors with a majority of solid work:

David Lynch
Steven Soderbergh
John Sayles
Elia Kazan
Sidney Lumet

Interestingly, Clint Eastwood hasn’t made too bad a showing as director.

Aw come on - Herb Myerson, the senior partner, sputtering with all his tubes hanging out and IVs rattling around - “doin the hur-dy gur-dy”? Wheezy Joe? The Baron Krauss von Espy? Ok. I consider it more of a confection than a full-on Coen Bros. spectacle, but it’s still above average and holds up to repeated viewings. Maybe they can get extra points for Fargo?

The Ladykillers. Yeah, they really missed on that one. I couldn’t figure out what the hell they were thinking when they drew up Tom Hanks’s character.

I had the opposite problem. For me it was more like they came up with this amusing, colorful character of Mark Twain, and then didn’t know what to do with him. It was just too much to ask that we believed that guy existed in the 2000s.

I don’t know about his first two movies, and I know from hearing that The Village is crap, but it seemed like M. Night Shyamalan could’ve been a flawless one. His formula worked really well. But please don’t jump on me- I know that there are plenty who think Unbreakable sucked, who laughed at Signs, and we’re all sick of the Sixth Sense jokes by now. :mad:

I swear, ‘I see dead people’ has gotta be the most overused damn movie line for comedy and by people ever. And I’m counting ‘may the force…’

I don’t think any director with a sizeable body of work is “flawless.” The director whose work I most admire is Robert Altman. Even his flops are fascinating.

Oh, to have a career like Malick. Make a couple of movies, take a 20-year vacation, come back and have everyone call you a genius.

Seriously, he made 4 movies in 30 years; you’re not exactly taking risks with a work ethic like that.

This reminds me of Terry Gilliam. Though I haven’t seen all his work, I am a fan of Time Bandits, Brazil, Baron Munchausen, and all his Monty Python works, and I didn’t even hate Twelve Monkeys and The Fisher King. While I despised Fear and Loathing…, it was a respectful hate. Sort of like my feelings about Naked Lunch.

No no, Mars Attacks was Burton doing a very good impression of a Tim Burton film but not quite getting it.

I did think he was picking up the pace a bit with Big Fish–but we shall see with Willy Wonka :smiley:

Gilliam, mmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Munchausen is one of my top 10 films! Shows me to not flip through my DVDs before posting.

While I haven’t seen every movie by Peter Bogdanovich (better known as Dr. Melfi’s shrink on The Sopranos these days) the ones I have seen – The Last Picture Show, Paper Moon, Mask and Noises Off – have all been quite excellent and cover a wide range of styles, from serious drama to slapstick comedy. Of course, he’s got a title in his filmography called “Voyage to the Planet of Prehistoric Women”…maybe we can ignore that one. :smiley: