Haneke's number one pick, Robert Bresson's "Au Hasard Balthazar," is a surprisingly lyrical film given Haneke's austere style and sadistic regard for his audience. Nevertheless "Balthazar" -- a maddeningly allegorical film I have never been able to get my head around, though it will linger there forever -- is as elliptical as any Haneke torture piece. Both filmmakers avoid moralizing in their respective explorations of suffering. Upon seeing "Balthazar" in 1966, Jean-Luc Godard said, "This film is really the world in an hour and a half."
Excerpted after the jump are lists from Fassbinder and Haneke, as well as Pedro Almodovar, whose list offers an interesting counterpart to Fassbinder's. Both he and Almodovar have sought to consider the queer experience via cinephilia, formal style and colorful, socially-conscious melodrama.
I've also included the stalwart top tens of Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino, two film-historians-as-filmmakers, who love creating these lists. Explore many more over at Sight and Sound. A massive collection has been curated on MUBI as well.