Oh, I should probably tell you guys what's going on here. This is my entry in The Movie Waffler's Winning Streak Blogathon. Basically, I have to give you my favorite string of great movies from a director of my choosing. Now this doesn't mean my favorite movies from my favorite director, but rather the longest uninterrupted stream of greatness from a particular director. That means, for instance, though Scorsese is one of my favorite filmmakers, I couldn't include him because a few of his streaks were interrupted by duds (I'm looking at you, New York, New York).
So, all that being said, I chose:
Yep, the Coen brothers. Going through all my choices it was really hard to find another that matched the rewatchable string of brilliance these guys created their first seven times out. Here's the streak:
Blood Simple (1984)
One of the greatest debuts in film history.
Raising Arizona (1987)
Few other films have ever caused me to laugh so hard.
Miller's Crossing (1990)
Gains with each viewing.
Barton Fink (1991)
The Hudsucker Proxy (1994)
Alright, I know I'll probably get some shit for including this movie, but I think it more than holds up against the other films in this list. An updating of Capra's "every-man finds success" comedies, this film also bears the unmistakable dark, twisted stamp of the Coens. Also, fuck you if you don't like it.
The Big Lebowski (1998)
[Insert ubiquitous Lebowski reference here.]
Honorable mention: Howard Hawks. It was really hard not making Hawks the focus of my piece. If I had, this would have been the string of films I'd have included:
Bringing Up Baby (1938)
Only Angels Have Wings (1939)
His Girl Friday (1940)
Sergeant York (1941)
Ball of Fire (1941)
Air Force (1943)
To Have and Have Not (1944)
The Big Sleep (1946)
The Red River (1948)
Now this would have been a perfect choice for multiple reasons. 1) At nine films, it's the longest streak I could find from any director. 2) Hawks was a man who traveled through various genres (western, screwball comedy, noir, war, musical) with greater ease than nearly any other director; and this streak contains entries from all but his musicals. 3) Not only was this a great streak, but these films, arguably, represent the best output of Hawks' career.
So why didn't I make this a Hawks list? I still haven't seen Only Angels Have Wings. Everything about this movie says I'd love it, but, still, I can't judge it without having seen it. A pity.