Stanley Kubrick might be regarded as a visionary, a master, a savant, but he was no elitist.
His favourite films include, yes, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Citizen Cane and Metropolis, but also…1992 basketball comedy White Men Can’t Jump.
The movie forms part of a list compiled by Criterion in 2012 but doing the rounds again this week, and it’s pretty eclectic.
Scraped from interviews with Kubrick’s friends, family and colleagues along with the man himself, it includes (in no particular order): Citizen Kane, The Treasure of the Sierra Madre, The Godfather, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, Dog Day Afternoon, Roxie Hart, Hell's Angels, An American Werewolf in London, E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Metropolis, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Abigail's Party, Roger & Me and oddly enough Mary Poppins, White Men Can't Jump, Modern Romance and The Jerk.
These can be added to a similar list made by BFI in 2013. Here’s some interesting tidbits from it.
"Your vision of life has moved me deeply, much more deeply than I have ever been moved by any films. I believe you are the greatest film-maker at work today" (from letter sent to Bergman in February 1960)
He apparently showed The Shining cast Eraserhead to “put them in the mood” that he wanted to achieve with the film
“I know only La Strada [of Fellini’s films] but that is amply sufficient to see in him the most interesting poetic personality of the Italian cinema.”
According to a biographer, Kubrick decided to make The Shining because he though Rosemary’s Baby (Polanski) and The Exorcist (William Friedkin) were brilliant and felt compelled to make a horror of his own.
BFI’s ‘Master List’:
1. Henry V
2. Alexander Nevsky
3. Le plaisir
The Earrings of Madame de . . .
Smiles of a Summer Night
Cries and Whispers
Beauty and the Beast
Children of Paradise
The Spirit of the Beehive
Throne of Blood
The Silence of the Lambs
The Battle of Algiers
Harold and Maude
Closely Watched Trains
The Phantom Carriage
The Bank Dick
Picnic at Hanging Rock
The Firemen’s Ball
Bob le flambeur
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