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David Lynch’s seductive and scary vision of Los Angeles’s dream factory is one of the true masterpieces of the new millennium, a tale of love, jealousy, and revenge like no other.
In this anguished yet mordantly funny film, Fassbinder charts the decline of a self-destructive former policeman and war veteran struggling to make ends meet for his family by working as a fruit vendor.
In the decades of occult cinema that Polanski’s ungodly masterpiece has spawned, it has never been outdone for sheer psychological terror.
Marcello Mastroianni and Jeanne Moreau star as a novelist and his frustrated wife, who, over the course of one night, confront their alienation from each other and the achingly empty bourgeois Milan circles in which they travel.
Jean-Pierre Melville began his superb feature filmmaking career with this powerful adaptation of an influential underground novel written during the Nazi occupation of France.
Orson Welles’s Mr. Arkadin (a.k.a. Confidential Report) tells the story of an elusive billionaire who hires an American smuggler to investigate his past, leading to a dizzying descent into a cold-war European landscape.
The legendary French filmmaker Agnès Varda, whose remarkable career began in the 1950s and has continued into the twenty-first century, produced some of her most provocative works in the United States.
Gary Cooper, Fredric March, and Miriam Hopkins play a trio of Americans in Paris who enter into a very adult “gentleman’s agreement” in this continental pre-Code comedy, freely adapted by Ben Hecht from a play by Noël Coward and directed by Ernst Lubitsch.
It’s 1968, and the whole world is watching. With the U.S. in social upheaval, famed cinematographer Haskell Wexler decided to make a film about what the hell was going on. Medium Cool, his debut feature, plunges us into the moment.
A cornerstone of the French New Wave, the first feature from Alain Resnais is one of the most influential films of all time.
Toshiro Mifune stars as an aging swordsman in director Masaki Kobayashi’s Samurai Rebellion, the gripping story of a peaceful man who finally decides to take a stand against injustice.
A young executive hunts down his father’s killer in director Akira Kurosawa’s scathing The Bad Sleep Well. Continuing his legendary collaboration with actor Toshiro Mifune, Kurosawa combines elements of Hamlet and American film noir to chilling effect.
The Mamiya family is seeking a husband for their daughter, Noriko, but when she impulsively chooses her childhood friend, she fulfills her family’s desires while tearing them apart. Early Summer is a nuanced examination of life’s changes across three generations.
In Jean Renoir’s satire of the bourgeoisie, Michel Simon gives one of the most memorable performances in screen history as Boudu, a Parisian tramp who takes a suicidal plunge into the Seine and is rescued by a well-to-do bookseller, whose family decides to take in the irrepressible bum.
During his first decade at Shochiku studios, where he dabbled in many genres, Ozu put out a trio of precisely rendered, magnificently shot and edited silent crime films
Jacques Becker lovingly evokes the belle epoque Parisian demimonde in this classic tale of doomed romance. When gangster’s moll Marie (Simone Signoret) falls for reformed criminal Manda (Serge Reggiani), their passion incites an underworld rivalry that leads inexorably to treachery and tragedy.
Four desperate men sign on for a suicide mission to drive trucks loaded with nitroglycerin over a treacherous mountain route—a white-knuckle ride from France’s legendary master of suspense, Henri-Georges Clouzot.
In 2 or 3 Things I Know About Her, Jean-Luc Godard beckons us ever closer, whispering in our ears as narrator. About what? Money, sex, fashion, the city, love, language, war: in a word, everything.
In the late 1940s, the incandescent Hollywood star Ingrid Bergman found herself so stirred by the revolutionary neorealist films of Roberto Rossellini that she sent the director a letter, introducing herself and offering her talents.
Based on the classic Emile Zola novel, Jean Renoir’s La bête humaine, a suspenseful journey into the tormented psyche of a workingman, was one of the director’s greatest popular successes—and earned star Jean Gabin a permanent place in the hearts of his countrymen.
Badlands announced the arrival of a major talent: Terrence Malick. His impressionistic take on the notorious Charles Starkweather killing spree of the late 1950s uses a serial-killer narrative as a springboard for an oblique teenage romance.
Michelangelo Antonioni invented a new film grammar with this masterwork.
John Ford takes on the legend of the O.K. Corral shoot-out in this multilayered, exceptionally well-constructed western, one of the director’s very best films.
Based on a novella by the great Rabindranath Tagore, Charulata is a work of subtle textures, a delicate tale of a marriage in jeopardy and a woman taking the first steps toward establishing her own voice.
Stanley Kubrick’s Paths of Glory is among the most powerful antiwar films ever made. This is a haunting, exquisitely photographed dissection of the military machine in all its absurdity and capacity for dehumanization.
The Night of the Hunter is truly a stand-alone masterwork. Graced by images of eerie beauty and a sneaky sense of humor, this ethereal, expressionistic American classic is cinema’s most eccentric rendering of the battle between good and evil.
In John Ford’s Young Mr. Lincoln, Henry Fonda gives one of the finest performances of his career, as the young president-to-be, struggling with an incendiary murder case as a novice lawyer. Compassionate and assured, this is an indelible piece of Americana.
What does the energy harnessed through orgasm have to do with the state of communist Yugoslavia circa 1971? Only counterculture filmmaker extraordinaire Dušan Makavejev has the answers (or the questions) in his surreal documentary-fiction collision WR: Mysteries of the Organism.
Thieves’ Highway vividly depicts the perilous world of “long-haul boys,” who drive by night to bring their goods to the markets of America’s cities. Richard Conte stars as ex-G.I. Nick Garcos, a tyro trucker bent on satisfaction from the man responsible for crippling his father.