Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Listless Lists

While reading one of my daily web sites, www.imdb.com, I saw a link to the Greatest Directors Ever. I couldn't pass that up. And it just so happens that it may have been the most infuriating list I've ever read. I'm still agog. In the 51-100 section alone, I saw at least 12 directors who should have been in the top 5. (Ba dum ching!) Seriously, did I really see Paul Verhoeven ahead of George Lucas? I don't care how much anyone hated Jar Jar Binks, American Graffiti by itself is better than anything Verhoven has ever made, and Black Book by itself qualifies Verhoeven for the Top 10 Worst Directors of Time and All Eternity.

The safe thing to do when putting together a list like this is to fill the top with dead directors and European directors and especially dead European directors, so I suppose the dimwits who made this list should be given credit for ranking comtemporary American directors highly. But aren't they going a step too far in putting Peter Jackson and David Fincher in the top 10? When I saw that, I did a double-take -- that's right, I closed my eyes, bobbled my head, and then looked with moon eyes at the screen. Are we talking about the same David Fincher -- Fight Club, Se7en, and a few Madonna videos -- that David Fincher? He's ahead of contempories like Joel Coen, Quentin Tarantino, and Paul Thomas Anderson, not to mention David Lean, Robert Altman, and Woody Allen? Wow. On the same list that has Fincher in the top 10, how could they think about putting Fran├žois Truffaut at number 44, Krzysztof Kieslowski (3 Colours, Dekalog) at number 47, Fellini at 67 (!), Almodovar at 68, and Milos Forman (Cuckoo's Nest, Amadeus) at 75?

I may have to get the Top 5 staff back together.