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Comparative Film Studies & Auteur Focuses

Film Studies: Auteur Focuses

  • Woody Allen
  • Ingmar Bergman
  • The Cohen Brothers
  • Federico Fellini
  • Alfred Hitchcock
  • Akira Kurosawa
  • Orson Welles (especially The Lady from Shanghai, Chimes at Midnight, and his Shakespeare adaptations of Macbeth and King Lear)

Comparative Film Studies

Same Director

  • Through a Glass Darkly vs. Winter Light vs. The Silence (Bergman trilogy)
    Theme: Spiritual isolation
  • Persona vs. The Hour of the Wolf vs. Shame (Bergman trilogy)
    Theme: Interpersonal relationships
  • Winter Light vs. Wild Strawberries vs. The Seventh Seal (Bergman trilogy)
    Theme: Meaning of life
  • Vertigo vs. Rear Window vs. Strangers on a Train (Hitchcock)
    Theme: Unexpected consequences of choices
  • The Conformist vs. The Last Emperor (Bertolucci)
  • Simon of the Desert vs. Viridiana vs. The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (Luis Bunuel)

Different Directors

  • The Seven Samurai (Kurosawa) vs. The Magnificent Seven (Peckinpah) vs. The Wild Bunch (Peckinpah)
    Same story retold differently (different culture, and different underlying “message for the audience”)
  • King Lear (Olivier) vs. Ran (Kurosawa) vs. King Lear (Godard) vs. A Thousand Acres (Jason Robards) vs. others
    Same story retold differently (different cultures, and different underlying “message for the audience”)
  • Macbeth (Olivier) vs. Throne of Blood (Kurosawa) vs. Macbeth (Mel Gibson) vs. Macbeth (Orson Welles)
    Same story retold differently (different cultures, and different underlying “message for the audience”)
  • Schindler’s List (Spielberg) vs. Sophie’s Choice (Pakula) vs. The Deer Hunter (Cimino)
    The ultimate in moral dilemmas
  • Rashomon (Kurosawa) vs. Last Year at Marienbad (Renais) vs. Wild Strawberries (Bergman)
    Perspectives on the subjectivity of reality
  • A Man for All Seasons (Zinnemann) vs. Becket (Glenville) vs. Man of La Mancha (Hiller)
    Perspectives on individual moral choice based on spiritual frame vs. the earthly world
  • Other Shakespeare films: King Lear, Macbeth, Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Tempest (interpretations by different directors)

Movie-to-Book Comparisons

  • Jean de Florette/Manon of the Spring
  • Like Water for Chocolate (Laura Esquevel)
  • The Unbearable Lightness of Being
  • Inherit the Wind
  • The Last Temptation of Christ (Kanzantzakis)
  • Joan of Arc (historical records vs. several movie versions)
  • The Ox-bow Incident (Walter Van Tilburg Clark)
  • One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest (Ken Kesey)
  • Sometimes a Great Notion (Ken Kesey)

See Ken Boa’s full list of recommendations for films with spiritual and moral themes.

Comparative Film Studies & Auteur Focuses

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