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September 19, 2007



It's Wednesday morning here in Denver, and the lists of favorite foreign language films has been posted over at Edward Copeland's site. I don't think there are many surprises on the list. I'm sure the people at the Criterion Collection are pleased at how many of their films were included. As anticipated, even though there was some diversity in choices of films, there were certain filmmakers that were agreed on, particularly Akira Kurosawa and Federico Fellini. Of the 122 nominated films, I still have not seen Satantango or Story of Late Chrysanthemums, am working my way through The Decalogue, and will see the more complete version of Cinema Paradiso at a later date.

The one title that surprised me by how high it scores was Spirited Away. Maybe it's a weakness on my part, but more often than not, I fall asleep watching Japanese anime. The one exception may be this year's Paprika, perhaps a nominee for a future list. It is nice to know that there are twenty-one other people who love Suspiria as much as I do. As far as more foreign language films being made available on DVD, it is encouraging that Lionsgate is making films available for Studio Canal's library, as Criterion can't be expected to do it all. There are some of us who would like to see Max Ophuls' films on Region 1 DVD, including his earlier films like Yoshiwara and Liebelei.

Aventures de Hajji Baba (les).jpg

For those who haven't seen it, I recommend checking out this list from Sight and Sound of 75 Hidden Gems: The Great Films Time Forgot. I was first made aware of this list by Filmbrain. I have seen twenty-five of the listed films, several on network television back when it was a terrific source for random film exploration, which is how I have seen The Pumpkin Eater, The Actress, and yes, The Adventures of Hajji Baba. Many of these films are unknown to me, especially the Eastern European titles. Some of the films may only be available on DVD-R or European tape formats if they are available at all. Some of the films, such as Peter Ibbetson and Grace of my Heart are available on DVD. I might even check out Terminal Island from Stephanie Rothman. While the list highlights films for further exploration, there are also proportionately more female filmmakers listed. A list that encourages a few more people to check out films by Allison Anders and Sally Potter is OK by me. And if we're really lucky, Paramount or somebody, will be encouraged to release a DVD of Sam Fuller's original version of The White Dog.


Posted by peter at September 19, 2007 10:08 AM


I am engaging in my own brand of listmania by conducting the 31 GREATEST HORROR FILMS survey, to be published on Halloween. I would love if you--or anyone else interested in such trivialities--would submit a nominating list.

Here's a link to the initial announcement.

Posted by: Ed Hardy, Jr. at September 23, 2007 03:16 PM