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Gender Matters: The Sight and Sound Top 50 Films Of All Time List

Women and Hollywood By Melissa Silverstein | Women and Hollywood August 2, 2012 at 1:26PM

Yesterday, the twittersphere went a bit wiggy with the once a decade Sight and Sound Top 50 Films of All Time List.  Thie list has been published every 10 years year since 1962 and Citizen Kane made number 1 five time. 
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Sight and Sound

Yesterday, the twittersphere went a bit wiggy with the once a decade Sight and Sound Top 50 Films of All Time List.  Thie list has been published every 10 years year since 1962 and Citizen Kane made number 1 five time. 

I have come to hate these lists.  They are usually just another indication of how far women still have to come in the film world. This list is no different.  It was announced at a press conference and from the noise in the blogosphere and the twittersphere is seems like it is a big deal. 

No surprise, there is only one woman directed film on the list of fifty; Chantal Akerman for Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles.

Now I know that women directors are outnumbered by male directors by like 95%.  No one is saying that the list needs to have all women or even equal women.  But the list needs to have more women.

I also know that women critics and writers are outnumbered by men.  But I also know that women make great films and that women critics and writers and experts react differently to films.

Sight and Sound polled 846 people and they got 2,045 films submitted.  I have no idea how many are women were polled.  I can't even venture a guess.  But I'm thinking it's not too many.  All I know if that I've gotten three lists from women who were polled and all three of those lists have more than one woman director on it.  While this is a very small sample and completely unscientific, it just makes me wonder how the list of films would have looked had there been more women polled. 

So again folks we have an indication of how much gender matters.

Here are some of the women directed films included on the list I have been sent:

Leni Riefenstahl - Olympia
Agnes Varda - Cleo from 5 to 7 (from 2 people) and Vagabond
Marzieh Meshini - The Day I Became a Woman
Chantal Akerman - Jeanne Dielman
Jane Campion - Sweetie
Larisa Shepitko - The Ascent
Lynne Ramsay - We Need to Talk About Kevin

Which women would you include on your list of top fifty films of all time?

50 Greatest Films of All Time

'Sight & Sound' Top 50: Editor Nick James Talks Changes in List and Voters (Thompson on Hollywood)

This article is related to: Women Directors, Agn├Ęs Varda, Lynne Ramsay, Jane Campion


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