Anyone who is fan of Stanley Kubrick is aware of the fact that he was a very private man. He rarely did interviews, and his process is as discussed as it remains elusive. He was painstakingly meticulous, a perfectionist, and many would assume that Mr. Kubrick was a serious man both on and off the set. There are many indications, however, that suggest otherwise. Over at Criterion, Joshua Warren has compiled a list of Stanley Kubrick’s favorite films, a list he gathered from interviews with friends, family, and colleagues as well as from an interview Kubrick did about fifty years ago. While there are certainly a fair amount of high-brow titles on the list, you may be surprised to learn just how… diverse it is.
The list Warren compiled includes titles from the Criterion Collection, such as “Henry V,” “I vitelloni,” “Wild Strawberries,” “Beauty and the Beast,” and Max Ophuls‘ “Le plaisir” and “La ronde” (based on the play by Arthur Schnitzler, who also penned “Traumnovelle,” the source material for Kubrick’s “Eyes Wide Shut“). But Warren also included titles that aren’t in the Criterion Collection, like “Eraserhead,” “Citizen Kane,” “City Lights,” “The Godfather” and more surprising movies like “White Men Can’t Jump,” “Modern Romance,” and “The Jerk.” No, that’s no joke. “White Men Can’t Jump” is indeed among Stanley Kubrick’s favorite films. Perhaps it was the budding chemistry between Wesley Snipes and Woody Harrelson that won him over. Or maybe the chess playing Kubrick was also a major baller. It’s no secret that Stanley Kubrick had a wicked sense of humor, but it’s always amusing to learn about the lighter side of the late auteur.
Be sure to check out the entire list here. Next time, we’ll learn that Andrei Tarkovsky was a huge fan of “Revenge of the Nerds” and that Ingmar Bergman loved the “Police Academy” movies.