If you’re looking to take your first step forward in the film industry or have loads of experience already, you obviously understand the importance of looking at some of the most influential directors. More specifically, you know the essential nature of looking at what makes a specific filmmaker great as opposed to one that’s just average.
One of the most favorable aspects of cinema is how the history behind it goes throughout the world. Unlike some more niche subjects, cinema is a universal art form with different filmmakers worldwide perfecting their passion quite differently from one another. Differentiating styles is what makes filmmaking so unique, with every person bringing a separate component to the art form.
Without diving into the broad nature of influential directors from the entire planet, let’s narrow it down slightly by discussing influential directors from the United States. Of course, this is still an extensive area to cover, but let’s take a quick gander at some of the best directors throughout the history of cinema in the United States.
No matter your background or where you’re from, you more than likely have heard the name Woody Allen at some point or another in the film world. Considering Allen is such a household name in cinema, it makes sense why so many people are familiar with the name.
Allen is most recognizable through his romantic comedies during the 1970s and 1980s, many of which evoked a witty and sarcastic humorous overtone many films hadn’t seen before. Allen broke grounds with his writing and directing, with many looking back at how Allen perfected his version of filmmaking.
With an even more notable name comes the stylings of Orson Welles, who is not only known for his filmmaking but work on television shows and radio. Welles is often most cited for his War of the Worlds Broadcast, a broadcast in which Welles read a story acting as if the United States was being attacked by aliens with people believing it to be true.
Aside from War of the Worlds, Welles pioneered contrasting light and dark overtones throughout his work, invoking a previously not recognized style in the film industry. His 1941 film, Citizen Kane, is often regarded as one of the best films ever to exist, and there’s a reason why.
Stanley Kubrick is typically cited as one of the most mad filmmakers. Still, aside from his personality issues, Kubrick created numerous perfections in the film industry from the early 1950s to the late 1990s.
Kubrick had a way of telling a story like no other with long, dark, and grim tales, often making audiences uncomfortable with the slow-build tension felt throughout his films. Un-conventionalism was deeply entwined with Kubrick, which is still a commonality sought after in film today.
For another household name, we have the powerhouse of Martin Scorsese. Scorsese rose to fame with his 1973 film, Mean Streets, which prompted a long career for not only him but for Robert De Niro. The two have created numerous films throughout cinema history, with many being some of the best in existence. Scorsese is still truly relevant today, with his most recent film expecting a release date soon.
Like Scorsese, Steven Spielberg was one of the early founders of the New Hollywood movement in the early 1970s. Spielberg utilized zooms and fluid shots throughout most of his films, with many pointing out the versatility of Spielberg by being able to create such a wide range of films such as Jurassic Park, E.T. the Extra Terrestrial, Jaws, Schindler’s List, and countless others.