Click on Read More and the green. Since I made this list there have been some more comprehensive ones on films by women here on Mubi: this is a gradually expanding but hopefully manageable selection.
*The HIStory of cinema is still to be re-written. Alice Guy-Blaché was one of the great pioneers of cinema, made hundreds of films, the first in 1896 before Méliès. Do check her out, there is skill and charm aplenty: I’ve done a list Alice Guy-Blaché, Queen of the Pioneers. In 1910s Hollywood, in films like Suspense, Lois Weber matched Griffith for panache. Lotte Reiniger was a pioneering feature film animator in the 1920s, with her silhouettes in The Adventures of Prince Achmed, while Germaine Dulac is widely credited with the first Surrealist film, The Seashell and the Clergyman (1928). Before Fantasia’s animated abstract Bach Fugue there was Mary Ellen Bute’s. Maya Deren was very influential on the post-war American avant-garde, though i must say her husband in the 40s Alexander Hammid, who co-directed Meshes of the Afternoon, deserves more recognition too. Marie Menken is described by our great list-maker Grey Daisies as the unsung heroine of the avant-garde. Agnes Varda is the mother of the French New Wave, Chantal Akerman surely a major director, Jeanne Dielman one of the great minimalist films. Is the Bulgarian Binka Zheliazkova’s The Attached Balloon one of the neglected treasures of the world? In notoriously patriarchal Iran, there have been several prominent female directors, putting Hollywood to shame. Often female co-directors get overlooked; Miéville with Godard, Ágnes Hranitzky with Bela Tarr, Evelyn Lambart with Norman McLaren…
This site is honoured to have Chantal Akerman, Maria de Medeiros, Sally Potter, Julie Dash, Sadaf Foroughi, Allison Anders, Ava DuVernay among the users. Sally Potter has even done a list, My Teachers, as has Julie Dash. And good to have Agnes Varda’s liaison with the site and her films being championed
I now include films by Lilly and Lana Wachowski who made their name when officially male, before their transgender assignments.
Werckmeister Harmonies (Hranitzky) co-d
Madchen in Uniform (Sagan) co-d
Silences of the Palace (Tlatli)
My Twentieth Century (Enyedi)
The Attached Balloon (Zheliazkova)
Testament of Youth (Armstrong) TV
Le Bonheur (Varda)
Itineraire de Jean Bricard (Huillet) co-d
Saving Face (Obaid-Chinoy) co-d
The Cave of the Yellow Dog (Davaa)
The list below is in year order. I’m hoping many more films by Alice Guy-Blaché will be added to the site, and too many others on the list above are also missing. As well as personal favourites, i’ve included some popular hits and landmark films i’m less keen on.Les mindre