An Alternate List of Films to Watch

Recently I saw yet another list of Movies For Aspiring Moviemakers To Watch from a notable director. One whole movie was co-directed by a woman. There weren’t many with a woman as a central character, either. 

I’m not pushing for female directing and/or starring inclusion simply because of chromosomes. I’m pushing for it because women have good, revolutionary, important work which is being ignored. Though we represent a measly 5% of the current Hollywood movie directing population, women are half the general population and half the moviegoing population. Woman are constantly making good cinema, and have been since the beginning. It’s absurd to continually contend women have no true or ‘high’ cinematic impact. 

So, at the urging of my friend David, here’s an alternate list of 52 films (his number). It’s not exhaustive or scientific, though I mostly kept directors to one entry each, and tried for movies across a variety of genres. I wouldn’t include all these films on a list of ‘Best Movies Ever Made.’ It’s just a broad list of fairly-easy-to-find films which is more representative than most lists I’ve been reading. 


10 Things I Hate About You

12 Angry Men
read up on its production and use of space

The 400 Blows



All About Eve

Beaches of Agnes
blurring lines between documentary and narrative in the best of ways

Beauty and the Beast

Before Sunrise

The Best Years Of Our Lives

Black Orpheus


Bride and Prejudice
the perfect way to ease into Bollywood

City of God

Cleo from 5 to 7

Cool Hand Luke

Day for Night
alternatively, 8 1/2 and Adaptation. I’ve a thing for movies about the movie process

Dazed and Confused
the role Matthew McCougnahey was born to play

Do The Right Thing

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind


Gentleman’s Agreement

The Godfather trilogy

that tracking shot is worth the price of admission

High Fidelity

His Girl Friday

In The Heat Of The Night

I’ve Loved You So Long

Jackie Brown

Jules and Jim


A League of Their Own

Lives of Others

The Maltese Falcon

Me and You and Everyone We Know

Moulin Rouge

On The Waterfront

Paris, je t’aime


Point Break


Rear Window
a film about voyeurs by one of their greatest

The Seventh Seal

Singin’ in the Rain

Some Like It Hot

The Sting

Sunset Blvd.

Thelma and Louise


Waltz With Bashir

When Harry Met Sally

Woman of the Year
alternately, anything with Katharine Hepburn, ever


Some Other Women Directors of Note

Just what you wanted, more lists! Here and here, and also

Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette (Inch’Allah trailer)
Jane Campion
Ayoka Chenzira
Claire Denis
Amy Heckerling

Kasi Lemmons
Deepa Mehta

Sarah Polley (Stories We Tell trailer)
Julie Taymor 

I’d love to hear what you have to say about my list, or read your picks, in the comments.

2 Responses to “An Alternate List of Films to Watch”
  1. N says:

    First feature film from Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette Le ring (2007) worth to be seen.

Check out what others are saying...
  1. […] my list of movies to watch I mentioned several female filmmakers whose work I’m interested in. One is Anaïs […]

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