top of page

Cinema & The Arts as Sermons: The Greatest Directors You Don't Know

Updated: May 9

Video from Cinema Cartography

Cinema & The Arts as Sermons: The Greatest Directors You Don't Know

"Timestamps (Selected Filmography): 0:00 Introduction 00:59 Lav Diaz (Norte; The End of History, From What Is Before, The Evolution of a Filipino Family) 05:36 Andrzej Żuławski (Possession, Diabel, On The Silver Globe) 09:07 Maya Deren (Meshes of The Afternoon, At Land, Witch's Cradle, The Secret Life of a Cat) 12:14 Glauber Rocha (Terra em Transe, Idade da Terra, Deus e O Diabo na Terra do Sol) 15:59 Theo Angelopoulos (Eternity and a Day, Landscape in the Mist, The Weeping Meadow) 19:34 Matsumoto Toshio (Shura, Funeral Parade of Roses, Selected Short Films) 23:14 Larisa Sheptiko (The Ascent, Wings) 24:47 Nagisa Ōshima (In the Realm of the Senses, Boy) 27:17 Stan Brakhage (Selected Short Films) 30:08 Djibril Diop Mambéty (Touki Bouki, Hyenas, Badou Boy) 33:10 František Vláčil (Marketa Lazarova, The Valley of the Bees) 36:52 Conclusion" from video introduction


Lavrente Indico Diaz (born December 30, 1958) is a Filipino independent filmmaker and former film critic. He is frequently known as one of the key members of the slow cinema movement, and has made several of the longest narrative films on record. Diaz is one of the most critically acclaimed contemporary Filipino filmmakers. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of Lav Diaz has received more than 313,596 page views. His biography is available in 24 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 21 in 2019). Lav Diaz is the 1,317th most popular film director (down from 1,196th in 2019), the 56th most popular biography from Philippines (down from 44th in 2019) and the 2nd most popular Filipino Film Director." from the website: pantheonworld

Andrzej Żuławski


Born in Lvov, Ukraine; then he moved with his father Miroslaw Zulawski to Czechoslovakia and later to Poland. In the late 1950s, he studied cinema in France. In the 1960s, he was an assistant of the famous Polish film director Andrzej Wajda. His feature debut The Third Part of the Night (1971) was an adaptation of his father's novel. His second feature The Devil (1972) was prohibited in Poland, and Zulawski went to France. After the success of his French debut That Most Important Thing: Love (1975) in 1975, he returned to Poland where he spent two years in making On the Silver Globe (1988). The work on this film was brutally interrupted by the authorities. After that, Zulawski moved to France where became known for his highly artistic, controversial, and very violent films. Zulawski is well known for his ability to discover and "rediscover" actresses. Romy Schneider, Isabelle Adjani and Sophie Marceau played their best parts in his films. - IMDb Mini Biography By: Yuri German

Maya Deren

May 12, 1917 – October 13, 1961

Maya Deren was one of the most important avant-garde filmmakers of her time for her use of experimental editing techniques and her fascination with ecstatic religious dances. Deren earned an MA in English literature from Smith in 1939 before joining choreographer Katherine Dunham’s tour. Deren then moved to Los Angeles, where she wrote; after marrying her second husband, motion picture photographer Sasha Hammid, in 1942, she collaborated with him on avant-garde films. Adept at marketing, Deren rented a playhouse in Greenwich Village to exhibit her movies, created her own distribution company, and established the Creative Film Foundation. In 1946 she used a Guggenheim Fellowship to photograph Haitian dance and became enthralled with voodoo ritual. In 1953, Deren wrote the Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti. from the article: Maya Deren

Glauber de Andrade Rocha

March 14, 1939 - August 22, 1981

"How many times can you say “Glauber” without wondering where such a funny name comes from? A Google experiment (try just typing in “Glauber”) shows that the Brazilian filmmaker is as famous today as his namesake, the German scientist Johann Rudolf Glauber, discoverer of Sodium Sulfate. It was Dona Lúcia, Rocha’s mother and until this day a tireless supporter of her son’s legacy, that gave him the odd name. It wasn’t the only thing that made him stick out, 20-odd years later, when, surrounded by the Walters, Luizs, and Joaquims, the Nelsons, Leons, and Paulos, he became one of the great filmmakers of his generation.

Widely heard-of though seldom seen, Rocha’s films are among the hardest to place in the canon of new cinemas from the 1960s. A tricontinental artist – he made films not just in Brazil but in Europe and Africa – Rocha was the victim of his own transience; he revelled in contradictions, in his aggressive theorising and self-attributed “aesthetic of hunger” (1) – which took him from third-world-isation to the forefront of international filmmaking. From Terra em transe (1967) (2) on, Rocha’s films resemble the didacticism of Godard’s Dziga-Vertov period, but damn if they were ever as detached from their causes as those films, so stilted in their narration, so caught in their time that – as the years have proved – they’ve barely moved forward at all. When Rocha made films, they were to reach Brazil in depths that no one had yet dreamt of.." from the article: Glauber de Andrade Rocha

Theo Angelopoulos’

April 1935 - January 2012

"If adversity is the crucible of great art, then Greece is as good a place as any to bring us one of the cinema’s great masters. It’s checkered past of wartime destruction and prevailing poverty during the 20th century serves as the backbone for Theo Angelopoulos’ unique cinematic vision and, perhaps most admirably, one of his most endearing traits is the sense of humour with which the man handles the tumultuous state of affairs plaguing motherland. His style is as sophisticated as it is unbelievably light and simple on-screen, which speaks of his uncanny understanding for the nuance achievable in the cinematic medium- and though this method buckles under the weight of internal politics in some of his potential great works, the cinema of Theo Angelopoulos remains compelling from his debut in 1970 right up to an untimely swansong with 2008’s the Dust of Time. Here’s why.." from the article: The Genius of Theo Angelopoulos, Explained

Toshio Matsumoto

"Toshio Matsumoto (松本 俊夫 Matsumoto Toshio) (March 25, 1932 – April 12, 2017) was a Japanese film director, a pioneer of avant-garde experimental movies, multimedia, and video in his homeland and abroad. Matsumoto was born in Nagoya, Aichi, Japan and graduated from Tokyo University in 1955. His first short was Ginrin, which he made in 1955, however his most famous film is 1969's wildly experimental Funeral Parade of Roses (also known as Bara no soretsu). Funeral Parade of Roses influenced Stanley Kubrick's film A Clockwork Orange heavily. The film was a retelling of Oedipus Rex, featuring a transsexual (portrayed by Peter) trying to move up in the world of the Japanese gay bars.

Matsumoto published many books of photography and art and was a professor and dean of Arts at the Kyoto University of Art and Design. He was also the President of the Japan Society of Image Arts and Sciences.

(Source: themoviedb) " .. from the article: Toshio Matsumoto

Larisa Shepitko

"Larisa Shepitko was born on January 6, 1938 in Artyomovsk, Ukrainian SSR, USSR [now Artemivsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine]. She was a director and writer, known for The Ascent (1977), Heat (1963) and You and Me (1971). She was previously married to Elem Klimov. She died on July 2, 1979 in near Redkino, Kalinin Oblast, Russian SFSR, USSR." from the article: Larisa Shepitko

Nagisa Oshima

March 31, 1932 - January 15, 2013

"Nagisa Oshima’s interest in politics began at a young age. His father, a government official (reportedly of samurai lineage) (1) who died when Oshima was six, left behind an extensive library of Socialist and Communist texts, which the young man read through as he came to maturity. He attended Kyoto University, studying law while dabbling in theatre and becoming deeply involved in student activism. The years of his youth were turbulent ones for Japan, as the nation rebuilt itself after its defeat in World War Two. Food shortages and depressed wages sparked a surge in labour-union activity. The threat of labour unrest, and the dawning of the Cold War mentality, led to crackdowns and “Red purges” of suspected radicals. Slowly, the American occupiers were transforming Japan into a stable capitalist democracy, and as the Cold War got underway, the U.S. came to see its new client state as an essential ally in the region. In 1951, the American occupation officially ended. That same year, the signing of the U.S.-Japan mutual security pact established a permanent U.S. military presence in Japan. Japanese leftists, fearing a return to authoritarianism and militarism, stepped up their demands for greater freedom. At the time of the security pact signing, Oshima was an officer in Kyoto University’s left-wing student association, and led the student body in a series of protests. (In one famous incident that occurred while Oshima was a student leader, the Emperor’s visit to Kyoto University was disrupted by a mass demonstration.).." from the article: Nagisa Oshima

Stan Brakhage

"Stan Brakhage (January 14, 1933 – March 9, 2003) was an non-narrative filmmaker. He is regarded as one of the most important experimental filmmakers of the 20th century. He worked with various kinds of celluloid: 16mm, 8mm, 35mm, and IMAX, and was a practitioner of what he referred to as 'pure cinema'.

Biography Brakhage was born as Robert Sanders in an orphanage in . Three weeks after his birth, he was adopted by Ludwig and Clara Brakhage and given the name James Stanley Brakhage.

As a child, he appeared on radio as a boy soprano before going to high school in and then dropping out of Dartmouth College after several months to make films. He was influenced by the writings of Sergei Eisenstein and the films of Jean Cocteau as well as the Italian neorealism movement. His first film, Interim (1952), was in the neo-realist style and had music by James Tenney.

In 1953, Brakhage moved to San Francisco where he associated with poets such as and Kenneth Rexroth. In late 1954, he moved to New York City where he met a number of contemporary artists, including Maya Deren, Marie Menken, Joseph Cornell, and John Cage.." from the article: Stan Brakhage

Djibril Diop Mambéty

"Djibril Diop Mambéty (1945 - 1998) has been described as an actor, orator, composer and poet, deservedly, besides a legendary African filmmaker and—thanks in part to his prénom—an “Angel.” He was born near Dakar in Kolobane, Senegal. “All my films speak about the city I was born in,” he’d once claim, “from the outskirts to the capital itself, because the road from your birthplace to the capital is always the path of a desire called emancipation.” He studied theatre at first, working on the stage after graduating from acting school, before losing his job at the Daniel Sorano National Theatre and then teaching himself the “Seventh Art.” Ultimately, he joins an amazing cinematic pantheon. After the late Pan-African greats Ousmane Sembène and Med Hondo, as well as Haile Gerima and Sarah Maldoror, this “Prince of Kolobane” came to innovate filmmaking for all Africa and the world with his signature mix of wild narrative style, rich traditional symbolism and virtuoso editing technique with impeccable political commitment.." from the article: DJIBRIL DIOP MAMBÉTY'S CINEMA OF POSSIBILITY

František Vláčil

February 1924 – 27 January 1999

"Although he is considered one of the most important harbingers of the Czech New Wave – and lived to see his medieval epic Marketa Lazarová (1967) voted the best Czech film of all time by a panel of local critics and industry experts on the centenary of Czech cinema in 1998 – his work was practically invisible in the UK until the enterprising Second Run DVD label released his masterpiece in 2007. Thankfully, Vláčil’s UK profile is set to rise significantly this year: Second Run has also disinterred his films The Valley of the Bees (Údolí včel, 1967) and Adelheid (1969), and September sees a near-complete retrospective of his work playing in London, Edinburgh and Glasgow.

The experience of watching the 14 films being screened (12 features plus two shorts) reveals that initial impressions of Vláčil are misleading. Although his best-known films suggest a fondness for widescreen medieval epics, his other work was shot in Academy ratio, and is mostly set within his own adult lifetime (1924-99), with particular concentration on the period 1945-47 – the end of World War II and the start of communist rule in Czechoslovakia. Several of the films have child protagonists, and the later ones in particular are chamber pieces far removed from Marketa Lazarová’s baroque extravagance. What they all have in common, though, is a painter’s eye for telling and/or dissonant detail, an intensely realised sense of period and place, a preference for music over dialogue and a strong affinity with landscapes and their natural flora and fauna.." from the article: František Vláčil: out of the past

1 view0 comments


bottom of page