Sunday, July 16, 2017

100 Best Canadian Films – David L. Pike

David L. Pike is the author of the great book Canadian Cinema Since the 1980s (you can read a good review of it by Steve Gravestock in Cinema Scope issue 54) and he provided a short introduction that puts the list in context. This 100 Best Canadians Films series, along with the qualifiers that Pike mentions, can also be seen as personalized versions of the more institutional Canada on Screen list, which screenings have been really exciting. By asking participants to provide one-hundred titles I hope that more off-beat, eccentric and less ‘official’ titles find a place in the canon. As well I hope to provide an image of what an in-depth Canadian cinema cinephilia would look like.
Other 100 Best Canadian Films lists includes those by Jerry White, André Loiselle, Paul WilliamsGreg Klymkiw, Pat MullenJason AndersonDaniel KremerYves Lever, Piers HandlingMarcel JeanMike Hoolboom and myself. – D.D.
As befits my critical stance as an American parasitizing Canadian cinema, most of my list is culled from the ones already posted on Toronto Film Review. I have attempted to triangulate the three overlapping but not quite identical selection criteria requested at various places on the blog (“100 titles important to Canadian film history”; “lists by film critics and scholars on their personal, subjective favorite films (or shows!) that have been made here in this country”; “100 Best Canadian Films”) while mostly sticking to the generous selection criteria. My list includes around a dozen shorts, so I have arbitrarily counted them two for one to make my 106 look a little more like an even 100. Because I will be sharing this list with my students, I have also included links to NFB/ONF and YouTube. – D.L.P.

David L. Pike’s 106 Best Canadian FIlms
1.     Back to God’s Country (Nell Shipman, 1919)
2.     Begone Dull Care (Evelyne Lambart, Norman McLaren, 1949)
3.     La petite Aurore, l’enfant martyre (Jean-Yves Bigras, 1951)
4.     Neighbours (Norman McLaren, 1952)
5.     A Chairy Tale (Claude Jutra, Norman McLaren; 1957)
6.     Les Raquetteurs (Pierre Perrault, 1958)
7.     Lonely Boy (Wolf Koenig, Roman Kroitor, 1962)
8.     À tout prendre (Claude Jutra, 1963)
9.     Pour la suite du monde (Michel Brault, Pierre Perrault, 1963)
10.  Le chat dans le sac (Gilles Groulx, 1964)
11.  Nobody Waved Goodbye (Don Owen, 1964)
12.  La vie heureuse de Léopold Z (Gilles Carle, 1965)
13.  Paddle to the Sea (Bill Mason, 1966)
14.  Entre la mer et l’eau douce (Michel Brault, 1967)
15.  Isabel (Paul Almond, 1968)
16.  Valérie (Denis Héroux, 1969)
17.  Deux femmes en or (Claude Fournier, 1970)
18.  Goin’ down the Road (Donald Shebib, 1970)
19.  On est au coton (Denys Arcand, 1970)
20.  Mon oncle Antoine (Claude Jutra, 1971)
21.  La vraie nature de Bernadette (Gilles Carle, 1972)
22.  Wedding in White (William Fruet, 1972)
23.  Les dernières fiançailles (Jean Pierre Lefebvre, 1973)
24.  The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (Ted Kotcheff, 1974)
25.  Black Christmas (Bob Clark, 1974)
26.  Les Ordres (Michel Brault, 1974)
27.  Gina (Denys Arcand, 1975)
28.  Shivers (David Cronenberg, 1975)
29.  La Tête de Normande St-Onge (Gilles Carle, 1975)
30.  The Street (Caroline Leaf, 1976)
31.  Rabid (David Cronenberg, 1977)
32.  The Brood (David Cronenberg, 1979)
33.  Les Bons débarras (Francis Mankiewicz, 1980)
34.  The Sweater (1980, Sheldon Cohen)
35.  My Bloody Valentine (George Mihalka, 1981)
36.  The Grey Fox (Philip Borsos, 1982)
37.  Videodrome (David Cronenberg, 1982)
38.  Strange Brew (Rick Moranis, Dave Thomas,1983)
39.  Ghostbusters (Ivan Reitman, 1984)*
40.  Sonatine (Micheline Lanctôt, 1984)
41.  My American Cousin (Sandy Wilson, 1985)
42.  Le déclin de l’empire américain (Denys Arcand, 1986)
43.  I’ve Heard the Mermaids Singing (Patricia Rozema, 1987)
44.  Life Classes (William D. MacGillivray, 1987)
45.  Un zoo, la nuit (Jean-Claude Lauzon, 1987)
46.  The Cat Came Back (Cordell Barker, 1988)
47.  Dead Ringers (David Cronenberg, 1988)
48.  Roadkill (Bruce McDonald, 1989)
49.  Jésus de Montréal (Denys Arcand, 1989)
50.  Next of Kin (Atom Edoyan, 1989)
51.  Les noces de papier (Michel Brault, 1989)
52.  Archangel (Guy Maddin, 1990)
53.  The Company of Strangers (Cynthia Scott, 1990)
54.  Masala (Srinivas Krishna, 1991)
55.  Careful (Guy Maddin, 1992)
56.  Highway 61 (Bruce McDonald, 1992)
57.  Léolo (Jean-Claude Lauzon, 1992)
58.  Calendar (Atom Egoyan, 1993)
59.  Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance (Alanis Obomsawin, 1993)
60.  Thirty-Two Short Films about Glenn Gould (François Girard, 1993)
61.  Zero Patience (John Greyson, 1993)
62.  Double Happiness (Mina Shum, 1994)
63.  Eclipse (Jeremy Podeswa, 1994)
64.  Exotica (Atom Egoyan, 1994)
65.  Le confessional (1995, Robert Lepage)
66.  Dead Man (Jim Jarmusch, 1995)
67.  Rude (Clement Virgo, 1995)
68.  When Night Is Falling (Patricia Rozema, 1995)
69.  Crash (David Cronenberg, 1996)
70.  Fire (Deepa Mehta, 1996)
71.  Hard Core Logo (Bruce McDonald, 1996)
72.  Kissed (1996, Lynn Stopkewich)
73.  Cube (Vincenzo Natali, 1997)
74.  The Hanging Garden (Thom Fitzgerald, 1997)
75.  The Sweet Hereafter (Atom Egoyan, 1997)
76.  Twitch City (Bruce McDonald, Don McKellar, 1998-9)
77.  Emporte-moi (1999, Léa Pool)
78.  Last Night (Don McKellar, 1999)
79.  New Waterford Girl (Allan Moyle, 1999)
80.  Ginger Snaps (John Fawcett, 2000)
81.  Heart of the World (Guy Maddin, 2000)
82.  Krapp’s Last Tape (Atom Egoyan, 2000)
83.  Maelström (2000, Denis Villeneuve)
84.  Waydowntown (Gary Burns, 2000)
85.  Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (Zacharias Kunuk, 2001)
86.  Last Wedding (Bruce Sweeney, 2001)
87.  Bollywood/Hollywood (Deepa Mehta, 2002)
88.  FUBAR (Mike Dowse, 2002)
89.  La face cachée de la lune (2003, Robert Lepage)
90.  La grande séduction (Jean-François Pouliot, 2003)
91.  Les Invasions barbares (Denys Arcand, 2003)
92.  Stryker (Noam Gonick, 2004)
93.  C.R.A.Z.Y. (Jean-Marc Vallée, 2005)
94.  A History of Violence (David Cronenberg, 2005)
95.  Water (Deepa Mehta, 2005)
96.  Away from Her (Sarah Polley, 2007)
97.  Eastern Promises (David Cronenberg, 2007)
98.  My Winnipeg (Guy Maddin, 2007)
99.  Frozen River (Courtney Hunt, 2008)
100.                 Pontypool (Bruce McDonal, 2008)
101.                 Polytechnique (2009, Denis Villeneuve)
102.                 Incendies (Denis Villeneuve, 2010)
103.                 Monsieur Lazhar (2011, Philippe Falardeau)
104.                 Stories We Tell (Sarah Polley, 2012)
105.                 Orphan Black, season 1 (Graeme Manson and John Fawcett, 2013)
106.                 Arrival (Denis Villeneuve, 2016)

* In honor of Geoff Pevere

Friday, July 14, 2017

100 Best Canadian Films – Jerry White

If you’re a graduate student in Film Studies in Canada you’ve probably heard about Jerry White from one of his many students at conferences complimenting him as a great professor. Without having met him, I would agree as he promptly responded to my initial suggestion to participate to 100 Best Canadian Films and then quickly submitted his list only a few hours later (compared to a general non-response by many people that I’ve asked). The published work on Canadian cinema by the Dalhousie University professor White includes a book on Peter Mettler, two edited collections on Canadian cinema and regularly contributing to the Canadian Journal of Film Studies (see his article Présentation: Vers une Revue canadienne international in the newest issue), amongst other work.
100 Best Canadian Films is a series where experts on Canadian cinema contribute their personal surveys of 100 titles important to the nation’s film history. Other lists include those by André Loiselle, Paul WilliamsGreg Klymkiw, Pat MullenJason AndersonDaniel KremerYves Lever, Piers HandlingMarcel JeanMike Hoolboom and myself. – D.D.
Jerry White’s 100 Best Canadian Films

Ten in a league of their own:
1963: Pour la suite du monde (Pierre Perrault, Michel Brault)
1968: Reason Over Passion (Joyce Wieland)
1987: Foster Child (Gil Cardinal)
1992: Le mouton noir (Jacques Godbout)
1993: 32 Short Films About Glen Gould (François Girard)
1994: Picture of Light (Peter Mettler)
1997: Spudwrench: Kahnawake Man (Alanis Obomsawin)
2002: Océan (Catherine Martin)
2006: From the Journals of Knud Rasmussen (Zacharias Kunuk, Norman Cohn)
2016: Pays (Chloé Robichaud)

Ninety more, also masterpieces:
1920: The Romance of the Far Fur Country (Harold M. Wyckoff)
1943: Action Stations (Joris Ivens)
1948: Boogie Doodle (Norman McLaren)
1949: Begone Dull Care (Norman McLaren)
1954: Corral (Colin Low)
1957: City of Gold (Colin Low, Wolf Koenig)
1959: Emergency Ward (William Greaves)
1961: Golden Gloves (Gilles Groulx)
1961: La Lutte (Michel Brault et al.)
1961: Le Niger, jeune république (Claude Jutra)
1961: Le sport et les hommes (Hubert Aquin, Roland Barthes)
1961: L’Homme du lac (aka Alexis Ladouceur, Métis) (Raymond Garceau)
1961: Very Nice, Very Nice (Arthur Lipset)
1962: À St. Henri le cinq séptembre (Hubert Aquin)
1963: À tout prendre (Claude Jutra)
1964: Le chat dans le sac (Gilles Groux)
1964: L’Inventaire d’une colonie (Raymond Garceau)
1964: Nobody Waved Goodbye (Don Owen)
1965: High Steel (Don Owen)
1967: In the Labyrinth (Roman Kroiter, Colin Low, Hugh O’Connor)
1967: Warrendale (Allan King)
1967: Wavelength (Michael Snow)
1968: De mère en fille (Anne-Claire Poirier)
1969: Winds of Fogo (Colin Low)
1969: You Are on Indian Land (Mike Mitchell)
1970: The Hart of London (Jack Chambers)
1970: On est au coton (Denys Arcand)
1970: Un pays sans bon sens ! (Pierre Perrault)
1971: Goin’ Down the Road (Don Shebib)
1971: Mon Oncle Antoine (Claude Jutra)
1973: Réjeanne Padovani (Denys Arcand)
1973: Watching for the Queen (David Rimmer)
1974: Les filles du Roy (Anne-Claire Poirier)
1974: Les Ordres (Michel Brault)
1974: Montreal Main (Frank Vitale)
1974: Waiting for Fidel (Michael Rubbo)
1975: Gina (Denys Arcand)
1975: Man Who Chooses the Bush (Tom Radford)
1976: She is Away (R. Bruce Elder)
1977: Le vieux pays ou Rimbaud est mort (Jean-Pierre Lefebvre)
1979: Mourir à tue-tête (Anne-Claire Poirier)
1981: Les Plouffe (television version) (Gilles Carle)
1982: Les fleurs sauvages (Jean-Pierre Lefebvre)
1983: Au clair de la lune (André Forcier)
1986: The Adventure of Faustus Bidgood (Andy Jones)
1987: Le Grand Jack (Herménégilde Chiasson)
1987: Un Zoo la nuit (Jean-Claude Lauzon)
1988: À corps perdu (Léa Pool)
1988: The Cat Came Back (Cordell Barker)
1989: Jésus de Montréal (Denys Arcand)
1992: Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media (Mark Achbar, Peter Wintonick)
1993: Calendar (Atom Egoyan)
1993: Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance (Alanis Obomsawin)
1993: Deux actrices (Micheline Lanctôt)
1993: Zero Patience (John Greyson)
1994: Eclipse (Jeremy Podeswa)
1994: Nunavut, episode 7: Qulangisi / Seal Pups (Zacharias Kunuk)
1995: Le Confessional (Robert Lepage)
1995: Live Bait (Bruce Sweeney)
1996: Cosmos (Roger Frappier, producer)
1996:  Kissed (Lynn Stopkewich)
1997: Silent Tears (Shirley Cheechoo)
1997: The Fifth Province (Donald McWilliams)
1998: Big Bear (Gil Cardinal)
1998: Earth (Deepa Mehta)
1999: Emporte-moi (Léa Pool)
1999: Full Blast (Rodrique Jean)
1999: My Grandmother Ironed the King’s Shirts (Toril Kove)
1999: Quand je serai parti, vous vivrez encore (Michel Brault)
2000: Life Without Death (Frank Cole)
2000: Maelström (Denis Villneuve)
2000: Traître ou patriote (Jacques Godbout)
2001: Marriages (Catherine Martin)
2001: Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (Zacharias Kunuk)
2002: Fix: Story of An Addicted City (Nettie Wild)
2002: Gambling, Gods and LSD (Peter Mettler)
2002: La turbulence des fluides (Manon Briand)
2002: Punch (Guy Bennett)
2002: Various Positions (Ori Kowarski)
2002: Yellowknife (Rodrique Jean)
2003: Totem: Return of the G’psgolox Pole (Gil Cardinal)
2003–06: Slings and Arrows (Peter Wellington)
2004–06: This is Wonderland (George F. Walker, Dani Romain, Bernard Zuckerman)
2006: Manufactured Landscapes (Jennifer Baichwal)
2006: La neuvaine (Bernard Émond)
2008: Passage (John Walker)
2012: Tout ce que tu possèdes (Bernard Émond)
2013: Sarah préfère la course (Chloé Robichaud)
2014: Me and My Moulton (Toril Kove)
2016: Quebec My Country Mon Pays (John Walker)