Filmmakers are often so busy making movies that they don’t get to watch them. For Steven Soderberg, he’s recorded his recent filmgoing experiences and created a log, and also a syllabus of essentials. While he was obviously in post on his latest Haywire, he recorded all that he watched. Studio 360 first got the list, and it’s also available as a PDF.
There seems to be little rhyme or reason for what he watched, other than the things he obviously was working on. He also seemed to give notes or a helpful eye to fellow film-makers. One of the best moments is seeing that Soderberg is innately curious about things, so between a session of The Social Network, he managed to squeee in the cult hit The Room, and also managed to watch Tiptoes. It’s notable that Soderberg offers no commentary on these titles, but you can also see how he returns to favorites.
He made time for such films as Miller’s Crossing, the first two Godfathers, Five Easy Pieces, Alien, Jaws, Dune and many more. And at the end of the list, he offers examples of his favorite film books, his favorite films for cinematography, editing and writing. Those who wish to make films would do well to heed his advice (except maybe about Gummo).What he doesn’t seem to be doing is playing academy catch-up.
Are you impressed with what Soderberg was watching?