2. Stanley Kubrick
DR. STRANGELOVE, 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, A CLOCKWORK ORANGE, SPARTACUS
There has arguably never been a more methodical director than Stanley Kubrick. His attention to detail and keen sense of what he wanted cemented his reputation as one of the most driven, and difficult, filmmakers in the game. Beginning as a photographer for “Look” magazine, Kubrick honed his eye for film pictures which very quickly gave way to his self-started career in movies. Making only 13 feature films in his nearly 50 year career, Kubrick’s output is among the most varied and studied of any director in the era. His first major film (his third overall) came in 1956 with the Noir heist drama, The Killing, a film which played with narrative and time and was an influence on a number of later crime films, most notably Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs. Ever the innovator, Kubrick won His only Oscar for creating special effects for arguably his masterwork, 1968’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. From a purely technical point of view, there was no one better than Kubrick. Any one of them, especially between 1964 and 1987, could be singled out as an example of a “perfect” movie, meaning everything is meticulously placed to elicit the proper response. It has been argued, not unfoundedly, that his films are cold and distant, and this can certainly be said for his color films, but Kubrick very intentionally chose subject matter that he could best bring to the screen and so while A Clockwork Orange, Barry Lyndon, The Shining, and Full Metal Jacket do come across as a bit separated, that’s merely because the stories lent themselves to it, and why so many Kubrick films require multiple viewings. The magic is in there, and Kubrick knew you’d eventually find it.
See the full list HERE.