Bill Douglas and Jean Eustache. Both superb.
that “boring” film (Thin Red Line) will be one of 90’s greatest films….either i like it or not :)
Ciulei and Damianos and Fei Xie are 3 more unknown masterful directors with limited number of films…
Charles Laughton for “Night of the Hunter”, Leonard Kastle for “The Honeymoon Killers”
Oh, and Jean-Claude Lauzon. His only two full length films – Leolo and Night Zoo – are both incredible. Sadly, he died in a plane crash before beginning work on his third film.
and Marlon Brando. He directed One Eyed Jacks.
I would have to say Andrzej Munk. He was a Polish filmmaker who died around the age of forty. He directed mainly documentaries and was able to direct 3-4 features. His last film (Passenger) was unfinished. Unfortunately, even though there is a rough cut of the film available that describes his intentions, it is not very good. It has some stills from “what would have been”. However, it is evident that had he finished the film, it would have been amazing. I recommend Back Luck, Heroism, and Man on the Tracks. I started with Bad Luck. Indeed, it’s a good place to start.
I can’t believe I’ve forgotten to mention Albert Lewin! Only 6 films to his credit. He is responsible for The Picture of Dorian Gray, and the masterful The Private Affairs of Bel Ami.
Dalton Trumbo’s only directorial credit is for Johnny Got His Gun. Although I’m not personally a big fan of the film, I know there are many people who consider the film a masterwork.
Agree on Jean Vigo, Edward Yang and Jean Eustache… all died too young.
I second Sergio Leone. Seven credited films and five uncredited films according to IMDb. The seven credited include Once Upon a Time in the West; Once Upon a Time in America; and The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. His other Eastwood features are pretty good too. Great batting percentage.
Yoshifumi Kondo (Whisper of the Heart)
I’d like to see more from Todd Fields, Harmony Korine, Todd Solondz & a film by Lucky McKee that matches May’s quality.
I’d say Jean Eustache is the first one that I come think of, I wish ‘La Maman et la Putain’ could get a proper dvd/blu-ray release soon or at all. I pretty much like all Tran Anh-Hung’s films (have’nt seen ‘I Come With The Rain’ yet), but the one I like the most is ‘Cyclo’ , which is utterly fantastic! As mentioned, Bill Douglas did’nt make so many films, but in those films he proves to be so much more than just a talented craftsman. I guess the same thing can be said about Jan Nemec whose debut ‘Diamonds of the Night’ impressed me a lot. ‘The ’Party and the Guests’ is also a mature and very exciting film from Nemec.
Though i wouldn’t call him one of the greatest directors, i think he deserves a mention here: Jörg Buttgereit made only four feature films. He did some TV projects recently (mostly documentaries for arte etc.), but hasn’t directed a feature film since 1993’s Schramm. That film was in my opinion his best and yet his most accessible work. Especially ‘Schramm’ showed him to be a promising new voice in german cinema, but sadly nothing came afterwards.
I also think that Edmund Elias Merhige hasn’t directed enough films.
charles laughton only made one, night of the hunter but what a movie
Alexis Damianos to grow the list.
Theodore J. Flicker
Best known for The President’s Analyst (1967), starring James Coburn, which is a classic sixties movie involving spies, hippies and plenty of paranoia. He did lots of TV stuff but only a handful of films that had a theatrical release.
He also wrote Barney Miller!
The late, great Alan Clarke, with only one theatrical feature to his credit: Rita, Sue and Bob Too! (1986)
Maya Angelou made a decent debut with down in the delta and Lynne Stopkewich directed kissed and suspicious river two of my favorite films
Joseph H. Lewis
lynne ramsay? only 3 features between 1999-2011
marina de van? does she count? only 2 features in almost a decade.
King Hu – relatively small filmography, one masterpiece, two great films