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Old 30-09-2005, 16:49   #1
John Hodson
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Scorsese's List of Films That Make 'Masterful Use of Light & Colour'

From the Criterion website:

Acclaimed director and film preservationist Martin Scorsese recently compiled two lists of classic films that make "masterful use of light and color." "Films use light and color to tell a story in a special narrative way, which delivers a strong emotional and intellectual impact on the viewer," Scorsese said. Made for Philips Electronics, the lists—divided into English-language and international films—include works that, according to Scorsese, "made a very strong impression on me and have affected how I try to use color in all of my films."

The full lists are:

Martin Scorsese's top 10 English language films (in order):
Stanley Kubrick's "Barry Lyndon"
King Vidor's "Duel in the Sun" (1946)
William Cameron Menzies' sci-fi flick "Invaders from Mars" (1953)
1946 film noir "Leave Her to Heaven"
John Huston's take on "Moby Dick."
The 1943 version of "Phantom of the Opera"
"The Red Shoes" (1948)
John Ford's "The Searchers" (1956)
"Singin' in the Rain"
and Hitchcock's obsession-themed "Vertigo."

The international film list (in order):
Jean-Luc Godard's "Contempt" (1963)
Ingmar Bergman's "Cries and Whispers"
Teinosuke Kinugasa's "Gate of Hell" (1953)
Wong Kar-Wai's "In the Mood for Love" (2000)
Bernardo Bertolucci's "The Last Emperor,"
Michelangelo Antonioni's "Red Desert"
Jean Renoir's "The River,"
Federico Fellini's "Satyricon"
Luchino Visconti's "Senso"
Sergei Paradjanov's "Shadows of the Forgotten Ancestors"


DVD Beaver has compiled a page which includes links to many of the films here

Anyone add to those lists? I'm a bit surprised Black Narcissus and/or A Matter of Life and Death didn't make it in Marty's top 10...
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Old 30-09-2005, 17:01   #2
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I'd add:

Vincente Minnelli's "Some Came Running"
Nicholas Ray's "Bigger Than Life"
Brian De Palma's "The Fury"
Nicolas Roeg's "Don't Look Now"
Huston's "Reflections in a Golden Eye"
Dario Argento's "Suspiria"
Scorsese's own "The Age of Innocence"

I'd also swap "The Last Emperor" for "The Conformist", a much more visually distinctive picture in my opinion.
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Old 30-09-2005, 17:02   #3
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Anyone add to those lists? I'm a bit surprised Black Narcissus and/or A Matter of Life and Death didn't make it in Marty's top 10...

Looks to me like he's limited it to one per director.
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Old 30-09-2005, 19:55   #4
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The Third Man
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Old 30-09-2005, 20:11   #5
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its missing a ridley scott film..

The Duellists.. maybe
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Old 30-09-2005, 20:13   #6
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The Third Man

Wonderful though Robert Krasker's work is on this film, it's in black and white and thus not in contention for this particular list which is about light and colour
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Old 30-09-2005, 20:32   #7
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Schindler's List
The List of Adrian Messenger
Lisztomania
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Old 30-09-2005, 21:13   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wendell Armbruster
Schindler's List
The List of Adrian Messenger
Lisztomania
Feeling whimsical again WA? Or listless...
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Old 30-09-2005, 22:11   #9
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Bladerunner has masterful light and colour IMO.
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Old 30-09-2005, 23:05   #10
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Old 30-09-2005, 23:29   #11
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Stanley Cortez shoots Night of the Hunter with such a masterful display of light and shadow that at the severe risk of sounding psuedish I can only describe the effect as being similar to listening to soulful music.
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Old 30-09-2005, 23:56   #12
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But another one that's b&w (maybe an idea for another thread?)

Always thought Korda's Thief of Bagdad was spectacularly colourful, and Curtiz used light and colour magnificently in The Adventures of Robin Hood. I know it's still quite fresh in my mind, but I found Terence Fisher's The Brides of Dracula also fits the bill.
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Old 01-10-2005, 00:20   #13
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A few more suggestions from me.

Visconti's "The Leopard"
De Palma's "Carrie"
Scorsese's "Taxi Driver"
Boorman's "Point Blank"
Peter Weir's "Picnic at Hanging Rock"
Anthony Mann's "The Naked Spur"
Francois Truffaut's "Fahrenheit 451"
Vincente Minnelli's "The Band Wagon"
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Old 01-10-2005, 08:23   #14
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I think this list needs some Douglas Sirk. I'd go for either Magnificent Obsession (his most eye popping Technicolor achievement) or All That Heaven Allows (almost as visually stunning and a better film).

Here some more:

Howard Hawks' Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
Nicholas Ray's Johnny Guitar
Stanley Donen's Funny Face
John Carpenter's Halloween
Roman Polanski's Rosemary's Baby
Brian De Palma's Blow Out
Ridley Scott's Alien
Masaki Kobayasi's Kwaidan
Jacques Tati's Playtime
Roger Corman's The Fall of the House of Usher
David Lynch's Blue Velvet
Dario Argento's Inferno
Mario Bava's Planet of the Vampires
Terrence Malick's Days of Heaven
Robert Wise's West Side Story

I'd swap The Red Shoes for Black Narcissus.

Recently I was blown away by Fruit Chan's Dumplings, cinematography by Chris Doyle and as beautiful as anything he's done for Wong Kar-Wai.

Last edited by Reno; 01-10-2005 at 09:02.
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Old 01-10-2005, 12:48   #15
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'Oh Brother Where Art Thou?' and 'Millers Crossing' are very nicely done.

'The Wizard Of Oz' going from b/w to brilliant colour is also worth a mention
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Old 01-10-2005, 13:32   #16
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Schrader's Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters
Paradjanov's The Colour of Pomegranates/Sayat Nova
De Toth's House of Wax
Madden's Careful!
Corman's The Masque of the Red Death (it's a little more gaudy than TFotHoU, but what the hey).
Vidor's Duel in the Sun
Russell's The Music Lovers
Jodorowsky's The Holy Mountain
Fuest's The Abominable Dr. Phibes
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Old 01-10-2005, 13:47   #17
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I'd add:-
Akira Kurosawa's Ran
Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West
Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in America
Wong Kar-wai's 2046
Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now (either cuts)

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Old 01-10-2005, 13:54   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anephric
Schrader's Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters
Madden's Careful!
Corman's The Masque of the Red Death (it's a little more gaudy than TFotHoU, but what the hey).[/i]
Had Mishima in my list but swapped it for Kwaidan, which may be where Schrader got some of his ideas from, though he mostly credited Bertolucci as his inspiration at the time. Nevertheless Mishima is a magnificent looking film as are American Gigolo and Cat People.

Maddin's Careful is one of my all time favourite films, but maybe I was feeling shy about mentioning more avant-garde films. This reminds me that James Bidgood's homoerotic wet dream of a film, Pink Narcissus is one of the most gorgeous bits eye candy I have ever seen.

I find it difficult to choose between Corman's Poe films, most of them look beautiful, but always liked the rich red/green colour scheme of TFotHoU.

Last edited by Reno; 01-10-2005 at 13:56.
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Old 01-10-2005, 13:59   #19
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Oops. Misspelled Maddin! Colour me craptastic.

The Bertolucci references in Mishima are pretty strong (especially in "The Temple of the Golden Pavilion" section) but there are so many other references running through the thing (Ozu, Godard etc) that narrowing down to a single source might be a bit of a waste of effort...

Can I add Bresson's Lancelot du Lac? Have done now.
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Old 01-10-2005, 14:01   #20
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Of the Poe films, the one which stands out most vividly (and, I guess, colourfully) in my mind is "The Tomb of Ligea".

I also want to add "Walkabout"
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Barry Lyndon, DUEL IN THE SUN, Invaders from Mars, Leave Her to Heaven, Martin Scorsese, moby dick, Phantom of the Opera, Singin' in The Rain, The Red Shoes, The Searchers, Vertigo

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