Ted Michael Morgan

Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Retired municipal court probation officer. Age 66.

Fragmented Notions: Progressive Christian Experience

I worked to list movies that I very much enjoyed watching. Otherwise, if I had listed greatest movies, there would be repeated listings from a small number of directors. I listed one from Bergman, one from Antonio, none from Wells (because most of us love his films). I love the work of Eric Rohmer but I left him out to include lesser known works that I think people might enjoy. This is a hard task. I did not list How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman--it is a great little movie but I just could not get in everyone. I really do think that some of classics of European Modernism are absolutely splendid. Hobson's Choice is a great movie not listed.

  1. Night and Fog (1955) .. Alain Resnais
  2. La Belle et la Bête (1946) .. Jean Cocteau
    My former wife brought me to this treasure.

After these first two films, there is no special sequencing of the following movies. Too many of these are from the 80s because I want to include many directors and not let a small number of filmmakers dominate the list. Otherwise, this might be a list of fifty films by Antonioni, Bergman, Wells, Resnais, Goddard, and a few other directors.

  • Berlin Alexanderplatz (1980) .. Rainer Werner Fassbinder
    It grows on the viewer—at least it slowly enchanted me. This is one of the best of the great German movies.

  • L'Eclisse (1962) .. Michelangelo Antonioni
    The visually perfect movie—I know of no other work like this film, except some other of Antonioni’s movies.

  • Persona (1966) .. Ingmar Bergman
    Unique film, I know of no other like it.

  • Craig's Wife (1936) .. Dorothy Arzner
    Innovative movie years ahead of other films that are contemporary with it.

  • Kagemusha (1980) .. Akira Kurosawa
    rom beginning to end, a perfect film narrative

  • Contempt (1963) .. Jean-Luc Godard
    Technicolor used in a unique way and Bridget Bardot, looks like the female students at my university at the time the film were made—classic Goddard.

  • True Confessions (1981) .. Ulu Grosbard
    My father liked it and I came to love it. A great score, by the way.

  • Play It As It Lays (1972) .. Frank Perry
    The best film about living in America I have seen. Tuesday Weld is a genius and the ensemble is the best cast movie I know.

  • Sansho Dayu (1954) .. Kenji Mizoguchi
    Visual style haunts memory and imagination. One of the most beautifully photographed movies I know.

  • Enemies: A Love Story (1989) .. Paul Mazursky
    A loving memory of survival. This is a film obviously made with genius and love. Mazursky is a great director and this is one of his masterworks.

  • The Third Man (1949) .. Carol Reed
    Perfect narrative in every way. The final shot is the most moving in all cinemas—the ending is of someone leaving you forever away.

  • Three Colours: Red (1994) .. Krzysztof Kieslowski
    The best of the trilogy—ambiguous, magical, ironic, and rich with hope and tender regard for human beings and our dreams.

  • Vertigo (1958) .. Alfred Hitchcock
    The narrative makes no sense. It is as dreamlike as Scotty’s infatuation. However, one of the best films I have seen.

  • Irezumi (1982) .. Yoichi Takabayashi
    The film is about erotic obsession and attachment to a lover.

  • Pinocchio (1940) .. Hamilton Luske & Ben Sharpsteen
    One of the greatest films ever made.

  • Finally, Sunday (1983) .. Francois Truffaut
    A précis of all that is breathtaking in Truffaut’s body of work.

  • Counsellor at Law (1933) .. William Wyler
    What a story and how well told! Movies from the early thirties haunt me.

  • Entre Nous (1983) .. Diane Kurys

  • The Dead (1987) .. John Huston
    I confess that it is sentimental in a way the novella is not, but this is still an intriguing narrative.

  • Desert Hearts (1985) .. Donna Deitch

  • Anything Else (2003) .. Woody Allen
    Even a small Woody Allen movie explores everything about life. This is a masterful work.

  • Choose Me (1984) .. Alan Rudolph
    I am almost certain that my first lover was Dr. Love.

  • The Unbearable Lightness of Being (1988) .. Philip Kaufman
    This film is part of a trilogy—the novel, this movie, and The New Yorker review. Seeing a film directed by Mr. Kaufman is always a boon. The movie has one of the best love scenes ever filmed.

  • The Leopard (1963) .. Luchino Visconti
    Burt Lancaster was a splendid actor and Visconti had the good sense to use this man’s ability in one of the finest films ever made

  • Senso (1954) .. Luchino Visconti
    In some ways, this is the most visually beautiful film not made by Antonioni.

  • Atlantic City (1980) .. Louis Malle
    Malle, Lancaster, and Sarandon—what more could one want?

  • The Spirit of the Beehive (1973) .. Victor Erice
    Childhood as I remember it. Splendid cinematography, casting, acting, and direction.

  • Belle de Jour (1967) .. Luis Buñuel
    All of Buñuel that I have seen are fine comedies. One of the best comedies that I know.

  • Le Voyage en Douce (1980) .. Michel Deville
    The Canon A-1 runs out of film. What a profound moment.

  • Mayerling (1936) .. Anatole Litvak
    Do not miss seeing this film.

  • Ikiru (1952) .. Akira Kurosawa
    Powerful narrative. Do not miss seeing this film.

  • Distant Thunder (1973) .. Satyajit Ray

  • L'Avventura (1960) .. Michelangelo Antonioni

  • The Searchers (1956) .. John Ford
    An iconic Ford film.

  • A Walk in the Sun (1945) .. Lewis Milestone
    Understated effective war story.

  • Days of Heaven (1978) .. Terrence Malick
    What happens when a philosopher directs a movie? Here you will discover what he creates—a splendid film.

  • Downhill Racer (1969) .. Michael Ritchie

  • Alexander Nevsky (1938) .. Sergei M. Eisenstein

  • The Last Detail (1973) .. Hal Ashby
    A great exploration of how we compromise to stay alive even when our behavior betrays life. Ashby was a fine director.

  • Niagara (1953) .. Henry Hathaway
    Interesting foreboding and sense of despair. I saw it when I was about eleven-years-old. It troubled and fascinated me.

  • Man of Flowers (1983) .. Paul Cox
    I thought that my former wife liked this film. She hated it. I think I understand why, but something about it attracts me.

  • Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972) .. Werner Herzog
    I think this is the most unforgettable of Herzog’s remarkable films.

  • Wings of Desire (1987) .. Wim Wenders
    Fantasy that recalls Rilke and American detective shows simultaneously.

  • Hair-Raising Hare (1946) .. Chuck Jones
    I saw it when I was three-years-old. Still love it.

  • Quackser Fortune Has a Cousin in the Bronx (1970) .. Waris Hussein
    What a magically surprising movie. I remember most the moment when the horses and their manure disappear.

  • Three Colours: Blue (1993) .. Krzysztof Kieslowski

  • Wise Blood (1979) .. John Huston
    John Huston could direct a masterpiece on pennies. This Gothic novel of a movie is a great movie.

  • In the Realm of the Senses (1976) .. Nagisa Oshima

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