Anne Gjelsvik

Professor in film studies, Norwegian University of Science and Technology


Voted in the critics’ poll

Voted for

Apocalypse Now


Francis Ford Coppola

Best Years of Our Lives, The


William Wyler

Brief Encounter


David Lean

City Lights


Charles Chaplin

Godfather: Part I, The


Francis Ford Coppola

Once Upon a Time in the West


Sergio Leone

Passion of Joan of Arc


Carl Theodor Dreyer

Règle du jeu, La


Jean Renoir

Spirit of the Beehive, The


Víctor Erice

Wild Strawberries


Ingmar Bergman


A list without Werner Herzog, Alfred Hitchcock, Terrence Malick and Wim Wenders – all among my favourite directors – and without any female directors; how is this even possible? Having to select only ten movies was harder than I imagined. However, aside from a somewhat melodramatic touch. I think the list does credit to the diversity that describes great filmmaking: the wonder of love, the terror of war, remembering what it’s like to be a child, learning what it means to become old, the coldness of loneliness or, how unfulfilled love can be meaningful. My list spans the grandiose and the intimate, the realistic and the allegorical. Some films are remembered for the imagery, others for their stories or their characters – all of them for teaching me about life. I learned to love the movies through Hollywood. This – and the fact that I am Scandinavian – has made my choices less international than I would have wished. (No Russians, no films from Asia.) But leaving out Bergman and Dreyer would have been impossible.

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