Tag Archives: John Ford

401. Close Encounters of the Third Kind

For my final podcast, I look at how Steven Spielberg effectively remade his first feature, Firelight to deliver a message of hope.

399. The Irishman

The gangster genre is dominated by men, but in Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman the most important position is held by a woman who utters barely a dozen words.

385. Unforgiven

Originally titled Whore’s Gold, Clint Eastwood’s Oscar-winning western exposes the psychosis, bigotry and misogyny at the heart of the genre’s mythology.

376. The Passion of Joan of Arc

In Carl Theodor Dreyer’s silent masterpiece, the story isn’t so much told through the Saint’s eyes as it is read on her face.

370. Cinema Paradiso

Nostalgia originally had nothing to do with the past but rather a desire to return home. Cinema Paradiso resonates with the feeling that cinema is your home.

365. Saving Private Ryan

Released to ecstatic reviews in 1998, Steven Spielberg’s film soon suffered a backlash. Twenty-one years on it has finally come of age.

327. The Godfather

Regarded as the greatest gangster picture of them all, the passing years continue to reveal new layers and meanings in Francis Ford Coppola’s masterpiece.

322. Yi Yi

As the title to Edward Yang’s masterpiece indicates, Yi Yi is a series of doubles; narrative, thematic, visual and aural, that deliver a subtle family portrait.

320. Cries and Whispers

Cries and Whispers was Ingmar Bergman’s fourth colour film but with a palette of just black, white and red, he still painted deep emotions and vivid dreams.

281. Taxi Driver

Taxi Driver was written in ten days by first-time screenwriter, Paul Schrader as a means to exorcise his festering, masochistic, narcissistic anger.

265. Great Openings – Part One

What makes for a great opening? Character? Conflict? Poetry? Hopefully, more than something we’re supposed to just look at.

251. Lawrence of Arabia

David Lean’s enduring masterpiece is a rare breed; an epic but also a portrait that refuses to explain its enigmatic subject.

238. Great Shots – Part Three

What makes for a great shot? Beauty? The lens? Lighting? Combine them and you have more than just an image.

217. Great Scenes – Part Three

What makes for a great scene? Performance? Conflict? Dialogue? Visuals? Music? Combine them and you have atomic weight.

208. The French Connection

William Friedkin’s Oscar-winner may be a gritty thriller but it owes an enormous debt to a classic of 19th century American literature.

187. The Revenant

Originally pitched as a simple story of revenge, under Alejandro Inarritu’s direction The Revenant became a journey of spiritual release.

170. My Darling Clementine

John Ford made so many great westerns, he is synonymous with the genre. But that doesn’t mean he always got everything right.

158. The Big Sleep

How can Howard Hawks’ adaptation of Raymond Chandler’s labyrinthine detective novel be heralded as a classic when it is impossible to follow?

149. The Last Picture Show

How did New York’s Peter Bogdanovich make a masterpiece set in small town Texas when he had never set foot in the state?

144. The Searchers

The Searchers is both a cinematic monument and an extremely unsettling depiction of the racism that lies at the heart of America’s own mythology.

128. Paris, Texas

Although Wim Wenders’ picture won the Palme d’Or at the 1984 Cannes Film Festival, a lot of American critics thought little of it. Has time proven them wrong?

119. Annie Hall

You can divide Hollywood rom-coms into two eras; before and after Annie Hall. The film also marked the arrival of one of America’s most individual artists.

109. Heaven’s Gate

Heaven’s Gate was such a flop, it sank a studio. But in the years since its release, its reputation has been growing. Is it the masterpiece some people claim?

The Journeys of Martin Scorsese

This video-essay celebrates the career of Martin Scorsese, showing how he has taken cinema as a means of telling stories and expanded it as a means of personal expression.

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