100 Great Films: Ten Years of William Wolf's Best Ten Films

NEW YORK, October 13, 2009 — William Wolf, a noted film and theater critic, author, and journalist, will celebrate his 30th year as an NYU instructor this fall. Wolf, who currently teaches the NYU-SCPS Movie Previews course on Saturday mornings at the Walter Reade Theater in Lincoln Center, has had a long career as a critic, writing for such publications as New York MagazineCue Magazine, the Gannett newspaper chain, and more throughout the country. He is currently President of Drama Desk and a member of the National Society of Film Critics and has donated to the New York City Library of Performing Arts about 450 recorded interviews of film and theater personalities, such as those with Charlie Chaplin and Ingmar Bergman, plus many culled from discussions in his film class.

When recently interviewed about the current state of film, Wolf says the industry is undergoing a change as important as when sound was introduced in the 1920s. “The digital revolution is changing the way films are shown. The practice of heavy containers of film reels being shipped around to theaters will disappear; in cinemas, digital projection will soon become the norm."

Wolf adds that almost anyone with desire and talent can make a film on a limited budget. Wolf says, "By uploading to the web, wide audiences can be reached, and careers can be developed. The studios will still make big budget films, but the independent film world will claim a fresh power of its own, as film festivals will abound with ever more home-grown movies.”

As for his favorite film, Wolf says, “Movies are so very different from one another that I'd prefer to choose favorites within genres. Choices are very personal, and critics disagree passionately with one another. I tend to favor independent work and find many foreign films to be superior. But if pressed, for me the top spot is held by director Roman Polanski’s powerful film about survival during World War II, The Pianist." 

William Wolf Movie Previews (X34.9507) runs October 17 – December 12 at NYU-SCPS during the Fall 2009 semester. Course details, faculty bios, and registration information are available at on the NYU-SCPS website at www.scps.nyu.edu/film. 

For links to Wolf’s special reports and critiques, please visit http://www.wolfentertainmentguide.com/.

Following are ten of William Wolf’s annual Best Ten lists:

1. Slumdog Millionaire
2. Milk 
3. 4 Months, Three Weeks, Two Days 
4. I’ve Loved You So Long 
5. The Class
6. Nothing But the Truth
7. Elsa and Fred
8. Good
9. Frozen River 
10. The Visitor
1. The Lives of Others
2. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly 
3. Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead 
4. Persepolis
5. In the Valley of Elah 
6. The Savages 
7. Atonement
8. La Vie en Rose
9. Black Book 
10. Sicko
1. Pan's Labyrinth
2. Water 
3. The Queen
4. Volver
5. Catch a Fire
6. The History Boys
7. Little Miss Sunshine 
8. Notes on a Scandal 
9. A Prairie Home Companion 
10. Heading South
1. Brokeback Mountain 
2. Pride and Prejudice 
3. Mrs. Henderson Presents
4. Saraband
5. March of the Penguins 
6. A History of Violence
7. Look at Me (Comme une Image) 
8. Match Point
9. 3-Iron
10. Good Night, and Good Luck
1. Kinsey
2. The Sea Inside 
3. Sideways
4. The Motorcycle Diaries 
5. Fahrenheit 9/11 
6. Moolaadé 
7. The Merchant of Venice
8. The Story of the Weeping Camel 
9. Hotel Rwanda
10.The Door in the Floor
1. The Barbarian Invasions 
2. Lost in Translation
3. The Magdalene Sisters 
4. Dirty Pretty Things
5. 21 Grams
6. Girl With a Pearl Earring
7. Chaos 
8. The Triplets of Belleville
9. Mystic River
10. Calendar Girls
1. The Pianist 
2. Chicago 
3. Sunshine State
4. Frida
5. Bloody Sunday 
6. The Hours 
7. Adaptation
8. Far From Heaven 
9. Rabbit-Proof Fence
10. Talk to Her
1. Gosford Park 
2. In the Bedroom 
3. The Man Who Wasn't There 
4. Faithless 
5. Iris 
6. The Taste of Others 
7. Black Hawk Down 
8. Baran 
9. Himalaya 
10. Lantana
1. Billy Elliot
2. Humanité
3. Erin Brockovich
4. The House of Mirth
5. East/West
6. Pollock
7. Sunshine
8. State and Maine
9. You Can Count on me
1. All About My Mother
2. American Beauty
3. Topsy-Turvy 
4. Boys Don’t Cry
5. The Hurricane
6. Ride With the Devil
7. Autumn Tale
8. The Insider
9  The Dreamlife of Angels
10. Eyes Wide Shut

About the NYU School of Professional Studies

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