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Which Directors Picked 'Step Brothers,' 'Rocky III' & 'Babe' Among Their All-Time Favorites On The Sight & Sound Poll?

by Oliver Lyttelton
August 23, 2012 10:00 AM
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Undoubtedly our favorite part of the once-a-decade Sight & Sound poll is poring over the Directors' Top 10 lists. We've already seen a small selection from the likes of Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese and Michael Mann, but the BFI have just put every director's ballot online to essentially stop you from getting any work done for the rest of the week.

And just like Mann's picks of "Avatar" and "Biutiful," there's quite a few surprising choices. Some filmmakers have the exact lists you'd expect, some have stuck with the critical canon, and others have clearly gone for their personal favorites, leading to some very curious choices that often go against the grain of what you might imagine the filmmakers would choose. Below are 15 picks from well-known directors that are among the outliers (in general, the directors were the only ones to pick these films), and you can dig into the Sight & Sound site for much, much more, including the full top 100 list from the Director's poll.

"The Accidental Tourist" dir. Lawrence Kasdan (1988)
Picked by Juan Antonio Bayona ("The Orphanage")

"The Assassination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford" dir Andrew Dominik (2007)
Picked by David Michôd ("Animal Kingdom")

"Babe" dir. Chris Noonan (1995)
Picked by Sion Sono ("The Room")

"Children Of Men" dir. Alfonso Cuaron (2006)
Picked by Marc Webb ("The Amazing Spider-Man")

"Fletch" dir. Michael Ritchie (1985)
Picked by Jeff Nichols ("Take Shelter")

"The Fury" dir. Brian DePalma (1978)
Picked by Luca Guadagnino ("I Am Love")

"The Goonies" dir. Richard Donner (1985)
Picked by Sean Durkin ("Martha Marcy May Marlene")

"Howard's End" dir. James Ivory (1992)
Picked by Whit Stillman ("Metropolitan")

"Margot At The Wedding" dir. Noah Baumbach (2007)
Picked by Lukas Moodysson ("Together") -- who also says he would have voted for the TV series "Friends," if he was allowed.

"Rocky III" dir. Sylvester Stallone (1982)
Picked by Matthew Vaughn ("X-Men First Class")

"Step Brothers" dir. Adam McKay (2008)
PIcked by Justin Kurzel ("The Snowtown Murders")

"Take The Money And Run" dir Woody Allen (1969)
Picked by Asghar Farhadi ("A Separation")

"The Trip" dir. Michael Winterbottom (2010)
Picked by Aaron Katz ("Cold Weather")

"Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me" dir. David Lynch (1992)
Picked by Gregg Araki ("Mysterious Skin")

"Two Lovers" dir. James Gray (2008)
Picked by Joe Swanberg ("LOL")

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  • Jeff Wilder | April 20, 2014 11:40 PMReply

    I love Children Of Men. My oussider pick would be

    Precious-Dir Lee Daniels. (2009)

  • Mike_M | August 23, 2012 1:54 PMReply

    @Mike, I agree, Jesse James & Children of Men shouldn't be considered outsider picks at all.
    I thought at least Jesse James would be on 1 critic's ballot, such a fantastic film

    I like the pick of Step Brothers, it really is a stellar comedy, right up there with Anchorman

  • Mancks | August 23, 2012 1:07 PMReply

    They can get Mark Romanek to join the poll but not PTA or Terence Malick? I don't get it.

  • Christopher Bell | August 23, 2012 1:15 PM

    They probably declined. Same with Herzog. You think any of those three really care at this point?

  • Tom | August 23, 2012 1:04 PMReply

    It made me laugh so hard to see Asghar Farhadi pick Take the Money and Run. That's awesome.

  • Kevin | August 23, 2012 1:03 PMReply

    Wait, I didn't see Steven Spielberg on the voter list.

  • Mike | August 23, 2012 11:06 AMReply

    Jesse James & Children of Men shouldn't be considered outsider picks at all.

  • Rme | August 23, 2012 10:43 AMReply

    Did Tsai Ming-Liang seriously put his own film on the list? What a dick.

  • Matthew Lingo | August 23, 2012 7:26 PM

    I kind of love that he did that. I mean, he made it, of course it means a lot to him. At least he's being honest.

  • rotch | August 23, 2012 10:18 AMReply

    I have no problem with any of this picks. Except maybe the thought of Friends. I hate that show.

  • lookf4r | August 23, 2012 10:10 AMReply

    I think you'll see the Assassination of Jesse James rise is stature over the years, thought it will probably take a while.

  • Karen K | August 23, 2012 10:48 AM

    Stumbled onto that one a while back and have shared it with everyone I know. Great film!

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