Major film-making countries, and my choices for their essential- not just favourite- 15, with a max of 3 per director, by year order. I’m going to allow Kubrick’s British films for UK, King Hu and Ang Lee with Chinese-set films for China. For Russia i’m not counting the other Soviet Republics, so no Paradjanov, Iosseliani, but allowing Dovzhenko’s Arsenal.
For others’ selections for different countries, take a look at the list of Auteurs World Cup films, though the films there are in match and group not national order.
1-15 Japan (so many directors painfully left ou: Ichikawa, Suzuki, Kitano, Tsukamato, Nakahira, Shinoda, Shindo, Teshigahara, Ogawa, and I could have picked a handful by Mizoguchi..)
31-45 USA (no Ford- The Searchers has magnificent qualities but it has some racist tendencies)
46-60 France (maybe i should have picked Passion of Joan of Arc, but well Dreyer was Danish and i wanted space for some others. The 400 Blows just missed, so no Truffaut. Really for France and Japan it was tempting to have many more)
106-120 China (including Hong Kong)
121- 135 Russia
136- 150 Spain (tho Pan’s Labyrinth isn’t among my 15 favourites given its popularity it probably merits a place)
151- 165 South Korea
166- 180 Iran
181- 195 Czech/Slovakia
196- 210 Hungary
211-225 Brazil (i’m not too keen on City of God)
next up for consideration:
I fancied a go at South Korea and Brazil, which i’m not so hot on, and for each included a few by reputation which i want to see, rather than ones i’m familiar with but doubtful over- for a better chronological balance. For Czech Republic/Slovakia the miracle of the 60s New Wave dominates the list- any suggestions of equally good recent films very welcome.Read less