2. Carlos Saura, Cria Cuervos. I saw it first not a long time ago and was enchanted by it from the first seconds, when the family pictures are shown accompanied by a sad music of Federico Mompou. The girl with sad and serious eyes, the mute Grandmother, the ill and melancholic mom, all of them are so believable in their suffering.
3. Ingmar Bergman, The Autumn Sonata. I loved Ingrid Bergman in this film. At the end she was so broken that one would rather sympathize with her, despite all of her mistaken deeds.
4. Pedro Almodovar, Hable con Ella. First of all, the music! The disc of the soundtracks is one of my favourites. The story is beautiful, it is told with humour and compassion. The acting of all the characters is great. I do not agree with those who call this story a justification of rape; it is not. The film makes it perfectly clear that Benigno is sick (though very miserable), and even his only friend Marco does not say that he did a nice thing, on the contrary. As Alicia's teacher says at the end, 'Nothing is simple', and these words have to refer to the whole story with Alicia.
5. Roman Polanski, Chinatown. I am not Polanski's fan, but this film is an exception. Jack Nickolson is admirable, and Faye Dunaway is unbelievably beautiful. The story has so many nuances that are subtly interconnected, so you can watch this film many times, and each time you will find something new.
Films/Directors I failed to like
LARS VON TRIER!
I honestly tried to like him because of my best friend (who really admired him at the beginning of our friendship, now she is more into Tarantino's films), but it is something beyond my perception. He is so misantropic that he doesn't even care about his characters. He tells the viewer a tragic story just to shock him, and you feel that he has no sympathy to his heroes regardless of how sad or terrible their fate is. He is also very pretentious. In addition, if an artist speaks so much about how realistic he is in his work, it immediately evokes doubts in his sincerity.
'Breaking the waves' was especially annoying because of the main character getting on my nerves.
Peter Grenaway - for more or less the same reasons. He does not try to devastate the viewer emotionally, because he is more into intellectual excercises, but he is also misantropic and pretentious. Or maybe I am too stupid for his films.