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Who do you feel are the greatest, best, your favorite directors WORKING today? (1 Viewer)

Reggie W

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So, this thread is not about directors that are no longer working, it is about the directors still working now. We won't be discussing people like Fellini, Kubrick, Ford, Tarkovsky, Bergman, etc. The strict rule is they have to be alive and at least rumored to be involved in a future project. This means you could list Francis Coppola as he is rumored to be potentially working on making another picture...though he has not made anything in a while and mostly seems to have been working on new cuts of his older pictures. Plus with Coppola, not sure you could call anything he has made in the last 30 years great. That's an open topic for discussion though.

Obviously, I would immediately offer Scorsese, as he is still working and still making amazing pictures and his next, Killers of the Flower Moon, looks to be quite promising. Spielberg still has a lot of clout and seems to be able to make what he wants. I think we can debate what films he has made over the last 30 years might be considered great. I do want these guys mentioned here because they are the old guard. The guys that have been making pictures from the 1970s until the present day and over the course of that time have continued to work and create films that endure despite changing audience tastes and industry preferences are certainly of great interest. We also need to look forward though at more recent directors whose body of work may someday be seen as "classic" or great pictures that stand the test of time.

The reason I wanted to start this topic is, as usual, to see if I can learn something, maybe be introduced to directors I may not be aware of, and to gain an appreciation of directors others are very enamored of. Also it will hopefully introduce me to pictures people see as being particularly well directed.

I also feel that directors are not a big reason most films get made anymore and in fact due to the types of pictures that dominate the mainstream really are pretty far down on the list of reasons people turn up to see a picture now. I believe the 1970s was really the greatest period of time for directors because they had the most clout then and really could make any kind of picture they wanted no matter what the subject matter may be. It was quite possibly the greatest period of American filmmaking in history. Obviously, we can debate this as well.

I grew up during the 1970s so I still am mostly attracted to see a picture due to who is directing. This is a bigger thing for me than who the actors are, or what the subject matter is, or anything else really. I mean Roger Deakins being behind a camera also is pretty much a lock that I will watch a film, ha.

So please, tell us who the directors are that draw you in these days, that their name being attached to a project is a guarantee you will watch a film. Tell us what pictures or maybe even moments in those pictures made you think, "Wow, this person is a great director!"
marty.jpg
 
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Reggie W

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So, love this guy. His next film is coming this year, I am hoping I get to sit in a cinema to see it. Personally, I have found each of his pictures to be absolutely wonderful. He's one of those filmmakers where my favorite picture from him seems to shift around perhaps depending upon my mood. Right now it is The Master but prior to that for a long time is was Magnolia. And of course for a bit it was There Will Be Blood. I seem to fall more in love with his films the more I watch them. I often find myself thinking about certain scenes from his pictures. He obviously seems heavily influenced by the filmmakers of the 1970s and this, of course, probably makes me more susceptible to his work.
 

Reggie W

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Coens.jpg


Could not make this list without these guys. I believe that No Country for Old Men is one of the greatest pictures of the last 50 years. I also think that Miller's Crossing is a flat out masterpiece. Interestingly the next picture we will see from these guys will be Joel flying solo in the director's chair to bring us The Tragedy of Macbeth. Of course he has a tremendous cast and how can you not be excited to get Shakespeare from a Coen?

All of their films are a special occasion, for me and I know for others here. Truly have earned their spot among the greatest filmmakers of all time. I know in this marketplace they may now be "streaming service" filmmakers as they can't compete for screen time in a cinema anymore, but their last work, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs showed they can still bring it...even on the small screen.
 

Reggie W

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The other Anderson. Yes, love this guy's work as well. Yes, it's a bit on the precious side but hey, that's what makes it specific to him. Always attracts a great cast and each picture is like an amazing little dollhouse that is populated with oddly fascinating characters. Usually selfish and self obsessed but that somehow makes them all the more watchable. He has had The French Dispatch in the can for some time just waiting for the Covid madness to end to attempt to get it into a cinema I would say. I'm there if this happens.
 

Reggie W

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Right now, at this specific moment in time, the director I'm most excited about is Denis Villeneuve. In 20 years I expect he will be held in the same regard as the ones above.
Denis.jpg


In total agreement with you here, John. Love his work and he seems to be able, at least so far, to combine art house ideas with mainstream success and few directors seem capable of this. Looking forward to Dune and I hope it is a whopping success for him so he can continue to find large budgets to create what inspires him.
 

Bryan^H

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Great thread.


-Paul Thomas Anderson

-Bill Forsythe (has he announced his retirement?)

-Jane Campion

and my favorite directors are:
-Richard Linklater
-Hirokazu Koreeda
 

TravisR

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The best have already been mentioned (Anderson(s), the Coens, Scorsese, and Spielberg) but I think David Fincher is another great one.

Spike Lee is a guy that is deserving of a lot more praise than he gets. Da 5 Bloods and American Utopia were easily two of the best movies I saw last year.
 

JohnRice

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OK, I'll toss in Nicolas Winding Refn. Definitely not commercially viable director in a major sense, but his movies are interesting and challenging.
 

sleroi

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Im a big comedy fan, so I would add both Taika Waititi and Jared Hess.

Both have unique, odd senses of humor, and really know how to visually tell a story.

I dont mind that Waititi's next film is another Thor movie. Ragnarok is a highlight of the MCU and stands up to repeated solo viewings. And I believe the success of Ragnarok is why he was able to make JoJo Rabbit.

Jared Hess' masterpiece for me was Gentlemen Broncos. A film by a Mormon mocking Scientology. You have to admire his guts. And the fantasy scenes with Sam Rockwell are genius. He's been working in TV lately, he directed several episodes of the unfortunately short lived Making History. His latest project is the sequel Shanghai Dawn. It should be really funny, and like Waititi, hopefully it will be succesful enough that he will be able to do more original films like the aforementioned Gentlemen Broncos or 2015s Don Verdean.
 

Walter Kittel

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Well, most of the ones I would list have already been mentioned, but for the sake of my $0.02 -

Paul Thomas Anderson - Great actors director, he always seems to get great performances out of his cast.
The Coen Brothers - Somewhat up and down in terms of their films; but when they are hitting on all cylinders it is pretty special.
Alfonso Cuaron - Very accomplished, and works well across genres.
David Fincher - Strong dramatic director who always delivers. He was probably my favorite technical director until the next guy in the list made a name for himself...
Christopher Nolan - Master technician whose films are like a fine Swiss watch.
Quentin Tarantino - I believe he still has one film to go before retirement, so he is definitely in the list.
:emoji_star: Denis Villeneuve - Just a terrific director who impresses me with his command of a variety of genres.

There are some others I should probably list, but this will do. Villeneuve is the one from the list who I believe has the most upside in their career. I think his potential is nearly unlimited.

- Walter.
 

JohnRice

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View attachment 92875

In total agreement with you here, John. Love his work and he seems to be able, at least so far, to combine art house ideas with mainstream success and few directors seem capable of this. Looking forward to Dune and I hope it is a whopping success for him so he can continue to find large budgets to create what inspires him.
I hope we emerge somewhat from COVID, Dune is released, and it's a massive commercial and critical success. You have to admit, what's been released looks awesome.
 

Jake Lipson

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I would also put forth Ron Clements and John Musker, although Musker is now retired, so only Clements is still working. But what a legacy. They are responsible for The Great Mouse Detective (along with two other directors), plus The Little Mermaid, Aladdin, Hercules, Treasure Planet, The Princess and the Frog and Moana. That is such a stellar record and so many favorites of mine. I don't know if Clements is going to direct again without Musker, but it is my understanding that he is still working at Disney. Even if we don't get another film by Clements, what a run that is. Musker absolutely earned is retirement, even though as a fan I find it sad to see him go. Those movies are cultural touchstones.

I'm also surprised that nobody has mentioned Pete Docter yet. Pixar is full of talented filmmakers -- that's not news -- but out of all of them, Docter has a particular talent for creating fully realized other worlds from the ground up and using that space to explore big ideas. His four films are among the best output of a studio that has achieved excellence on (almost) every film. Monsters, Inc., Up, Inside Out and most recently Soul are all indelibly his. During production of Soul he was also promoted to chief creative officer of Pixar following John Lasseter's exit. I don't know when or if he will be able to direct again now that he has the executive job, but I hope he is still able to find time to continue doing that because he has such a specific visionary skill set.
 
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Jeffrey D

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My favorites are P.T. Anderson, Fincher, and Tarantino. I would also put Steven Soderbergh on my list.
 

Reggie W

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-Bill Forsythe (has he announced his retirement?)

I don't know if he has announced his retirement but he has not made a picture since 1999 and there are, as far as I know, no rumors of him having something in the works. So, as much as I love him, Local Hero is one of my favorite films of all time, I don't think he can be included as a "working" director.
 

Malcolm R

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More of a popcorn crowd pleaser than artiste, perhaps, but I'd say James Wan.

I've enjoyed everything he's done, and will watch anything he directs in the future. He has proven to be successful in a wide range of budgets and genres, from small budget scary films (Saw, Insidious, The Conjuring) to major action franchises (Furious 7) and mega-budget comic book films (Aquaman).

Upcoming projects include Malignant and presumably Aquaman 2. He is a producer only this time on The Conjuring 3.
 
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Bryan^H

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I don't know if he has announced his retirement but he has not made a picture since 1999 and there are, as far as I know, no rumors of him having something in the works. So, as much as I love him, Local Hero is one of my favorite films of all time, I don't think he can be included as a "working" director.
Right. I'll scratch him off my list.
 

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