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12 minutes ago, kenmorefield said:

Conversely, 25 gives more of a built in cushion for the film that starts at 1, and more voters makes any individual naysayer less of an influence. 

True. I suppose we've just gotta do the second round voting with the Top 25 and see what happens!

I'm browsing the list right now! Thanks for putting this together, Darren.

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I'm excited to see the results.

I can't say I'm sad to see no Lynch or experimental films, although I did give Mothlight a 5. It's connection of film and the natural world really resonated with me even if I've only seen it on youtube and the Brakhage anthology. Anyway, I'll save further commentary for a "discussing the list" thread once results are announced.

As for the ranking of the Top 25, I am torn. In principle, I think that our votes should determine the reordering rather than another cutoff about how many films by a director can be in the top 25. If I read correctly, there are five directors with two films in the Top 25. I'm not concerned about Dreyer having the one and two spots, although I personally gave Joan of Arc a 4. Those two films near the top is not unprecedented and that feels like an honest expression of the group, as Joel said. That said, I am a little concerned like Ken I think that if several people put their second choice of the directors film in the 20-25 spot, then it will even out and bump the consensus top films out of the top spots or top 10. I think that saying there could be only one film per director in the top 10 feels like a more reasonable compromise. Then people could vote their honest straightfoward rankings without the pressure for artificial placement of a directors second film at 20-25. I'd rather have a list with Dreyer films at #1 and #11 and Tarkovsky at #2 and #13 than a list with Dreyer at #7 and #12 and Tarkovsky at #10 and #15, if that makes sense.

With the parameters we set, (blind nominations, 2/director, 2 rounds of voting, etc.), it's gonna prompt people to vote within the system in less than ideal ways. I think a more spread out top 10 would make sense for the purpose of a book and for a public facing list.

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Getting ready to go on my afternoon walk...but one quick impression...for all out discussion (and not surprisingly) we didn't fare much better for gender diversity (women directors), though I think we fared better with more films about race and the international/American mix.

That being said, I reiterate a point I made in the nomination process, that there may well be films directed by men that are *about* women. Even so...

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The Romanian New Wave contingent would like to have a word with everyone.

(I'll get over it. Looks like a fine list otherwise.)

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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At this point, I think having a second round of voting to rank the top 25 is the best option. For directors with two films, there is a possibility that half of us will rank one film highly and the other half will rank the other film highly, which will result in something else getting the #1 spot, but is there anything in the top 25 that anyone would seriously object to being #1? Looking over the list, I don't see anything.

I feel strongly that we should keep the two films per director limit. For one thing, I would have voted quite differently on a handful of films if I knew a director was only getting one film, and I really can't imagine this list without Passion of Joan of Arc and Stalker, and I'm thrilled Through a Glass Darkly and Cleo from 5 to 7 made it, and I think having two films by at least one woman director is a good look, especially considering we probably could have done better for gender diversity. (i.e. What do you all have against Lady Bird?? I jest, mostly.)

 

Edited by Evan C

"Anyway, in general I love tragic artists, especially classical ones."

"Even the forms for expressing truth can be multiform, and this is indeed necessary for the transmission of the Gospel in its timeless meaning."

- Pope Francis, August 2013 interview with Antonio Spadaro

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18 minutes ago, Evan C said:

I feel strongly that we should keep the two films per director limit. For one thing, I would have voted quite differently on a handful of films if I knew a director was only getting one film, and I really can't imagine this list without Passion of Joan of Arc and Stalker, and I'm thrilled Through a Glass Darkly and Cleo from 5 to 7 made it, and I think having two films by at least one woman director is a good look, especially considering we probably could have done better for gender diversity. (i.e. What do you all have against Lady Bird?? I jest, mostly.)

 

I think your reasoning is sound, but something that jumped out at me - and this hasn't historically been a big concern of mine, although it's something that gnaws at me these days - is that our current Top 10 with the two-films-per-director rule gives us films directed only by white males (right?). When we change to one film per director, Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing cracks the Top 10. (While Lee's film is my pick for best film of the 1980s, I don't think I gave it a very high rating for this list, but I'm OK with its high appearance on our list.) If we reorder the Top 25 and retain the two-films-per-director rule, Lee's film may yet break into the top 10; I haven't really played out the implications of that potential vote. But as things currently stand, only one list contains a Top 10 that isn't all directed by white guys. Oh, and on the one-film-per-director list we also get a Japanese filmmaker.

Again, if it's the Top 25 we care about - and maybe it is - then I'm OK with the two-films-per-director list. 

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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7 minutes ago, Christian said:

I think your reasoning is sound, but something that jumped out at me - and this hasn't historically been a big concern of mine, although it's something that gnaws at me these days - is that our current Top 10 with the two-films-per-director rule gives us films directed only by white males (right?). When we change to one film per director, Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing cracks the Top 10. (While Lee's film is my pick for best film of the 1980s, I don't think I gave it a very high rating for this list, but I'm OK with its high appearance on our list.) If we reorder the Top 25 and retain the two-films-per-director rule, Lee's film may yet break into the top 10; I haven't really played out the implications of that potential vote. But as things currently stand, only one list contains a Top 10 that isn't all directed by white guys. Oh, and on the one-film-per-director list we also get a Japanese filmmaker.

Again, if it's the Top 25 we care about - and maybe it is - then I'm OK with the two-films-per-director list. 

I think it was mentioned maybe having only one film per director in the top ten, and then having a director's second film outside the top ten. That would fix that problem for the top ten and still enable us to keep Passion of Joan of Arc, The Kid with a Bike, Stalker, Through a Glass Darkly, Red Beard, Tree of Life, Cleo from 5 to 7...

"Anyway, in general I love tragic artists, especially classical ones."

"Even the forms for expressing truth can be multiform, and this is indeed necessary for the transmission of the Gospel in its timeless meaning."

- Pope Francis, August 2013 interview with Antonio Spadaro

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Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, Christian said:

The Romanian New Wave contingent would like to have a word with everyone.

The biggest difference between this and past lists is its level of engagement with contemporary world cinema. The main reason I find the one-per-director top 100 so much more interesting is that it makes room for Reygadas, Puiu, Sissako, Jia, Tsai, and Apitchatpong (not to mention classic auteurs Borzage, Spielberg, Kazan, Powell & Pressburger, and Bunuel, who didn't make the cut).

Edited by Darren H
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10 minutes ago, Darren H said:

The biggest difference between this and past lists is its level of engagement with contemporary world cinema. The main reason I find the one-per-director top 100 so much more interesting is that it makes room for Reygadas, Puiu, Sissako, Jia, Tsai, and Apitchatpong (not to mention classic auteurs Borzage, Spielberg, Kazan, Powell & Pressburger, and Bunuel, who didn't make the cut).

Speaking of which...no Spielberg. I'm not curshed, but I am mildly surprised. 

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47 minutes ago, Darren H said:

The biggest difference between this and past lists is its level of engagement with contemporary world cinema. The main reason I find the one-per-director top 100 so much more interesting is that it makes room for Reygadas, Puiu, Sissako, Jia, Tsai, and Apitchatpong (not to mention classic auteurs Borzage, Spielberg, Kazan, Powell & Pressburger, and Bunuel, who didn't make the cut).

I've been more on the "these are the films participants support" side - the two-films-per-director list. But your post persuades me that the one-film rule might - might - be preferable. 

"What matters are movies, not awards; experiences, not celebrations; the subjective power of individual critical points of view, not the declamatory compromises of consensus." - Richard Brody, "Godard's Surprise Win Is a Victory for Independent Cinema," The New Yorker

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This is a quick glance, not a thorough corss-check, but having just moved the 2010 and 2011 lists to the new app, it appears to me as though 25 films on the Two Films Per Director list are entirely new. (That's not too surprising given that 15 films were from the teens and thus qualified in their first year of eligibility). And honestly, even though I was disappointed at some favorites that were left off, I can't say I have a beef with any of the 25 new films. 

Depending on how you classify the genre, I think I counted at least 8 documentaries, which made me happy.

Non-sequitur: I was discussing results with Cindy during our walk and she said that recency basis was to be expected and maybe not as bad a thing as we are worried about. If we do another list in 10 years, some of these newer films films may get replaced, but a select few will remain, and this is the first step towards canoncity. We're giving those films a chance. One take home for me is that Miyazaki is firmly entrenched in the canon of spiritual significance and Malick (who was already in) is cementing his foothold. Same with Scorsese. The jury's still out on PTA, Wes Anderson, Spielberg, Lynch, and all things Pixar (in regards to *spiritual significance*). 

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1 hour ago, Darren H said:

The biggest difference between this and past lists is its level of engagement with contemporary world cinema. The main reason I find the one-per-director top 100 so much more interesting is that it makes room for Reygadas, Puiu, Sissako, Jia, Tsai, and Apitchatpong (not to mention classic auteurs Borzage, Spielberg, Kazan, Powell & Pressburger, and Bunuel, who didn't make the cut).

Conversely, unless I am counting wrong (which is a distinct possibility), we have only six films by women directors in the Top 100, and moving to 1 film per director would cost us 2 of them.

Non-sequitur, I wish I had tried harder to run down the Akerman film and pushed harder for Persepolis. (Don't think I could have pushed any harder than I did for Queen of Versailles, but maybe I should have nominated a Barbara Kopple film instead.)

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1 hour ago, Darren H said:

Reygadas, Puiu, Sissako, Jia, Tsai, and Apitchatpong

I'd be happy to see each of these films on the list as well as Ushpizin from Israel (haven't seen Tsai). But probably not at the expense of all the films that would be lost. It's a list of films, not just director's top films.

14 minutes ago, kenmorefield said:

Conversely, unless I am counting wrong (which is a distinct possibility), we have only six films by women directors in the Top 100, and moving to 1 film per director would cost us 2 of them.

It would gain Selma, which I nominated.

Edited by Rob Z
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On 5/8/2020 at 2:31 PM, kenmorefield said:

So here's where I landed on the next steps:

1) I'll ask Darren to send me a ranked list of provisional results that we (he and I or just me if he can't make it) can announce via Zoom on Tuesday (I'll post an announcement in  another thread) and e-mail to voters immediately after livestream. 

2) Voters who care to do a round 2 will have 72 hours (until Friday evening) to send me their personal ranking of the Top 25 films. (No dropping #1 and adding #93, but you can rearrange all you want). Anyone who doesn't submit a second round ballot will be assumed to be okay with the Round 1 results and treated as though they submitted a Round 2 ballot with no changes.)

3) I'll tabulate the results of round 2, and that will be the final list that we post online here and release externally to the world; we'll start collecting blurbs, etc.

4) Rather than make a series of contingent plans for each possible result, we'll build in this contingency: if at least 5 of the voters (approximately 22%) express reservations, either via the live stream or e-mail) that the list needs something more/other than tweaking, we'll reconvene here to discuss what additional changes to the process we want to make. 

 

As we've worked through this process, the criteria that has most consistently emerged for voting is, I think, that we want the list to be not a reflection of a certain set of formal guidelines but as accurately as possible a reflection of who we (Arts & Faith) are, at least as currently constituted. I want the process to reflect that as well as the films.

This is what we should stick with, along with 2 films per director. That's my view. Those were the criteria with which we all voted, and I think that that matters, even if we'd like a more diverse list, as I also would.

I admit to being one who gave two 6s to some films by the same director, which reflected my nominations to some extent, although some of those didn't even end up on the list. My practice of spreading around points had more to do with bumping down a point or two a directors' second or third etc. film, as well as bumping up films that would make the list more diverse (especially by geography), which was mostly happening at the 4-5 level. 

Edited by Rob Z
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19 minutes ago, kenmorefield said:

Non-sequitur: I was discussing results with Cindy during our walk and she said that recency basis was to be expected and maybe not as bad a thing as we are worried about. If we do another list in 10 years, some of these newer films films may get replaced, but a select few will remain, and this is the first step towards canoncity. We're giving those films a chance. One take home for me is that Miyazaki is firmly entrenched in the canon of spiritual significance and Malick (who was already in) is cementing his foothold. Same with Scorsese. The jury's still out on PTA, Wes Anderson, Spielberg, Lynch, and all things Pixar (in regards to *spiritual significance*). 

This gives me quite a bit of comfort to read, as by far the most startling thing about the list for me was seeing three films in the top 25 that are less than five years old

The two Malicks up there make me feel particulary queasy, for some reason, even though I confess I did my part to help Tree of Life get there. Perhaps it has something to do with the unrivalled level of disdain so many seem to have for Malick's style, and how having those two right next to each other near the top potentially bends perception of the entire list, perhaps more so than other inclusions. 

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12 minutes ago, Rob Z said:

It makes more sense to me that we should really be having this conversation about films we wish would have made the cut in a thread devoted to Discussing the List.

I agree, and I think we will once the list is finalized. But I think this actually is a discussion of *process* that is less abstract now that we have round 1 results. 
 

Quote

4) Rather than make a series of contingent plans for each possible result, we'll build in this contingency: if at least 5 of the voters (approximately 22%) express reservations, either via the live stream or e-mail) that the list needs something more/other than tweaking, we'll reconvene here to discuss what additional changes to the process we want to make. 

What I think I am hearing -- and it is good and necessary -- is people thinking through the question, "do I think the list needs something more/other than tweaking?" I'm not sure that anyone has arrived at an answer yet, though some appear to be leaning in one direction or another. Right now, I am leaning towards 2 films/director with a an optional Round 2 because that informed my voting and was what I/we said we would most likely do. But I've heard good points that I hadn't necessarily thought of from both perspectives, so I think there's no harm in taking another day or two for the discussion phase before calling the question.

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2 minutes ago, kenmorefield said:

I agree, and I think we will once the list is finalized. But I think this actually is a discussion of *process* that is less abstract now that we have round 1 results. 
 

What I think I am hearing -- and it is good and necessary -- is people thinking through the question, "do I think the list needs something more/other than tweaking"? I'm not sure that anyone has arrived at an answer yet, though some appear to be leaning in one direction or another. Right now, I am leaning towards 2 films/director with a an optional Round 2 because that informed my voting and was what I/we said we would most likely do. But I've heard good points that I hadn't necessarily thought of from both perspectives, so I think there's no harm in taking another day or two for the discussion phases before calling the question.

Fair enough, Ken. 

It's a fantastic list no matter what, as far as I'm concerned.

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Popping in here to say again that I really think the optional round 2 ranking of the Top 25 could make a significant difference in what the final list looks like. I'm likely not going to make the Zoom call, but that'd be my biggest point of feedback. In many ways, the one-film-per-director list is more interesting and diverse (because there are 100 directors!), but for all the additions, I feel the loss of some of those absent (most personally, The Tree of Life and The Kid with a Bike, my two all-time favorite films).

20 minutes ago, Rob Z said:

It makes more sense to me that we should really be having this conversation about films we wish would have made the cut in a thread devoted to Discussing the List.

I agree with this. Is there a thread devoted to discussing the list results?

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16 hours ago, Rob Z said:

2) Voters who care to do a round 2 will have 72 hours (until Friday evening) to send me their personal ranking of the Top 25 films. (No dropping #1 and adding #93, but you can rearrange all you want). Anyone who doesn't submit a second round ballot will be assumed to be okay with the Round 1 results and treated as though they submitted a Round 2 ballot with no changes.)

Perhaps this will be addressed in the Zoom meeting, but can we clarify how to go about ranking the Top 25 films? Are we rearranging the current Top 25 in the 2-film-per-director list (#1 as Ordet, #25 as Monsieur Vincent), or are we picking our personal ideal Top 25 based on all 100 films listed? And how should we submit our ballots—emailed to Ken, to Darren?

 

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18 minutes ago, Joel Mayward said:

Perhaps this will be addressed in the Zoom meeting, but can we clarify how to go about ranking the Top 25 films? Are we rearranging the current Top 25 in the 2-film-per-director list (#1 as Ordet, #25 as Monsieur Vincent), or are we picking our personal ideal Top 25 based on all 100 films listed? And how should we submit our ballots—emailed to Ken, to Darren?

 

Joel, we had not yet decided pending Zoom and board discussions. The current plan, where I landed on before voting was/is:

  1. Darren will e-mail ballots for Round 2 on Wednesday. 
  2. The ballot will allow you to re-rank (if you choose to) the Top 25 but not to move films in or out of it.
  3. The ballots will be returned to Darren by Friday (he said he was willing to do this).
  4. We'll announce publicly the final list on Friday.

The hold up is that I did affirm before voting that if five or more voters expressed to me (via board, Zoom, or e-mail) that they felt after seeing Round 1 results that the list needed more than just "tweaks," we would delay (or possibly re-think) Round 2 in order to discuss what additional/other tweaks we might need. 

Thus far, I have had one person affirm by e-mail that he would like more substantive changes, while I think the rest of us are talking it out and haven't decided yet. 

For what it is worth, since I don't think he will be at the Zoom meeting, the substantive change the voter requested beyond possibly re-reanking the Top 25 is a second round of voting only considering nominated films directed by women or non-white males. (i.e. Does anyone want to change their score for those films having seen the results of Round 1?)

 

 

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P.S. Edit: I'm intrigued by that idea, but it's new enough that I haven't thought through the implications or have any idea if it would get much traction. Certainly I might bump my score for films like Daughters of the Dust or Stories We Tell now that I know doing so might make them more likely to replace something in the 75-100 range, that I'm ambivalent about that replacing something I think is essential. But there may well be people who care passionately about the films in the 80-100 slot and would resent seeing them make the first cut and then subsequently eliminated. 

That idea might also man some of the films that made the list could move up, and I don't know how much people care about *rank* as opposed to just being on the list. I sort of care about quadrants, but the difference to me between 35 and 85 is minimal. That said, it is a bad look, I think, that there are currently no films by women directors higher than 40 (unless I missed something), and the current Round 2 won't fix that.

On the flip side, I realized in talking about this with my wife yesterday that I've just gone through two months of a crash course (thanks COVID-19) in exponential math. We have six percent films directed by women, which is not good enough, but (again with a glance, not a careful audit) I think that is *double* the 2011. I'm not sure what the metric should be and I'm always skeptical (in voting or taxes) for people who say "more" or "less" without ever articulating how much more or less. If someone had told me before the list, you'll double the number of films by women directors, I would say "Six isn't enough, but I think it is realistically, meaningful progress."

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