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Michael Winterbottom: Best of modern British cinema

James Luckard
The list author says: "Michael Winterbottom moves effortlessly betwen genres, shooting on everything from gorgeous 35mm stock to the rawest handheld camcorders. His films do not share an imposed directorial style. Instead, they are unified by a searing intelligence that is clearly his, and a refusal to play by the tired conventions of "Mad Libs"-style narrative storytelling. Many filmmakers break the rules because they aren't capable of making a decent film that would follow them. Winterbottom is the opposite. He showed in his earliest films, like "Jude", that he could do wonderful conventional films. Then, around the time of the inspiring "Wonderland," he moved onto his own very exciting path, an improvisational, handheld, realistic style that often allows his films to blur the lines between narrative and documentary. He still shoots at least one film a year. I'm looking forward to wherever that path takes us next."
Michael Winterbottom: Interviews (Conversations with Filmmakers Series)
Michael Winterbottom: Interviews (Conversations with Filmmakers Series)
"Compilation of interviews from 1995 to 2009."
Michael Winterbottom (British Film Makers MUP)
Michael Winterbottom (British Film Makers MUP)
"The first book about Winterbottom, an expensive scholarly tome from Britain."
The Look of Love
The Look of Love
"Steve Coogan stars in the hugely entertaining and at times moving story of Britain's king of porn, who became the wealthiest man in the UK through real estate investment, but ended up alone with his millions. Winterbottom's previous film, "Everyday", is not currently available in the US but can be bought from amazon.co.uk"
Trishna
Trishna
"His third film of a Hardy novel, "Tess" set in modern India. Gorgeously shot on location, with great performances from Riz Ahmed and Freida Pinto."
The Trip
The Trip
"The American feature film edited from the UK miniseries. I'd actually recommend the shorter version. While the miniseries has its charms, there are numerous repeated beats and nothing essential is cut in the film, which has more of an emotional punch."
The Trip [Region 2]
The Trip [Region 2]
"The UK import of the complete miniseries. A continuation of the TRISTRAM SHANDY film, with Coogan and Brydon playing the same hilarious fictionalized versions of themselves."
The Killer Inside Me [Blu-ray]
The Killer Inside Me [Blu-ray]
"Brutal, visceral 1950s noir starring Casey Affleck, Jessica Alba and Kate Hudson."
The Shock Doctrine
The Shock Doctrine
"Winterbottom and "Road to Guantanamo" co-director Mat Whitecross reteamed for this feature-length documentary based on Naomi Klein's bestseller."
Summer in Genoa
Summer in Genoa
"This fascinating little film, about a father who moves with his two young daughters to Italy after his wife dies, went unreleased in the US for a couple of years until it finally arrived on DVD in the wake of Firth's Oscar win."
A Mighty Heart [Blu-ray]
A Mighty Heart [Blu-ray]
"His underrated film focusing on the search for kidnapped journalist Danny Pearl from his wife Mariane's point of view."
A Mighty Heart: The Inside Story of the Al Qaeda Kidnapping of Danny Pearl
A Mighty Heart: The Inside Story of the Al Qaeda Kidnapping of Danny Pearl
"Mariane Pearl's compelling book."
A Mighty Heart (Music From The Motion Picture)
A Mighty Heart (Music From The Motion Picture)
"Odd mix of Indian pop music and score from the film. If the pop music is in the movie at all, it's only heard for a second or two from radios in various scenes, and the score is far too subtle for repeat listening. A mess of an album."
The Road to Guantanamo
The Road to Guantanamo
"A searing indictment of how America has thrown away its most basic principles in the War on Terror. Won the Silver Bear at Berlin."
Tristram Shandy - A Cock and Bull Story
Tristram Shandy - A Cock and Bull Story
"Winterbottom adapts this unadaptable book by making a film about the making of a film. Ferociously intelligent and loads of fun. This American DVD keeps the theatrical 2.35 aspect ratio, while the UK DVD is an open matte 1.78 version."
9 Songs [Blu-ray]
9 Songs [Blu-ray]
"Mixes scenes of unsimulated sex with footage of the same couple at various concerts to chart the growth and gradual decay of a relationship over time, largely without dialogue. Fascinating, but definitely not for everyone."
Code 46
Code 46
""Blade Runner" meets "Lost In Translation." A deliriously romantic fever dream of a sci-fi film noir mystery. Shot, gorgeously, on location in Shanghai, India and Dubai."
Code 46
Code 46
"Fantastic, ambient score. Missing two songs from the film, however, "Song #6," by Freak Power, which plays in the Shanghai nightclub and "Warning Sign" by Coldplay, which plays over the finale."
In This World
In This World
"Stunning, unforgettable documentary-style fictional look at the obstacles facing two Afghan refugees who cross overland from Pakistan to Britain, seeking a better life in the developed world."
24 Hour Party People
24 Hour Party People
"Wonderfully lively history of The Factory and the Manchester music scene in the 1980's, through the eyes of the showman at the heart of it all."
24 Hour Party People [Music from the Motion Picture]
24 Hour Party People [Music from the Motion Picture]
The Claim
The Claim
"Winterbottom's grittily realistic western is a retelling of "The Mayor of Casterbridge" set in 1860's California. It features gorgeous photography and a stunning cast of independent film greats."
The Claim (2000 Film)
The Claim (2000 Film)
"Michael Nyman's brilliant score was largely unused. He wrote a glorious ten minute piece for the intercut burning of the town and the wedding at the end of the film, simply gorgeous. Operatic genius."
The Claim
The Claim
"Frank Cottrell Boyce's script, extremely rare."
Wonderland
Wonderland
"Winterbottom's masterpiece, a sweeping yet intimate portrait of three sisters over Guy Fawkes Day weekend in London."
Wonderland 1999 Film Score
Wonderland 1999 Film Score
"Nyman's achingly romantic score gives an epic scope to the emotions behind Winterbottom's intentionally ordinary characters."
With or Without You
With or Without You
"A charming but slight Belfast-set sex comedy, it's probably his most mainstream and approachable work. Available from amazon.co.uk"
I Want You (Beloved) [Region 2]
I Want You (Beloved) [Region 2]
"Hypnotically weird tale of lust and murder, gorgeously photographed. Not much narrative, but plenty of atmosphere. DVD available from Amazon UK, Japan and Germany."
Welcome to Sarajevo
Welcome to Sarajevo
"A crisply told story of reporters covering the siege of Sarajevo. Filmed on location, it feels authentic in spite of being Winterbottom's most Hollywood-looking production."
Welcome to Sarajevo: Natasha's Story
Welcome to Sarajevo: Natasha's Story
"Michael Nicholson's memoir, basis for the film."
Welcome to Sarajevo Movie Soundtrack
Welcome to Sarajevo Movie Soundtrack
"A mix of pop tunes from the film and Adrian Johnston's score."
Welcome to Sarajevo
Welcome to Sarajevo
"Frank Cottrell Boyce's screenplay"
Jude
Jude
"Winterbottom's film of his favorite novel is grim but full of life and a showcase for the dazzling, pre-stardom Kate Winslet. The UK DVD is pan and scan. Track this out-of-print American disc down used instead."
Jude the Obscure: Jude (Shooting Scripts)
Jude the Obscure: Jude (Shooting Scripts)
"Hossein Amini's script, published at the time of the film in England. The introduction is a great look at Winterbottom's process."
Jude: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Jude: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
"Adrian Johnston's score is alternately haunting and lovely and at times both."
Go Now [ NON-USA FORMAT, PAL, Reg.4 Import - Australia ]
Go Now [ NON-USA FORMAT, PAL, Reg.4 Import - Australia ]
"His BBC television film about a man who learns he has multiple sclerosis, is moving without resorting to easy sentimentality. This Australian DVD can be found on eBay."
Butterfly Kiss
Butterfly Kiss
"His first feature shows immense potential and uses The Cranberries' "No Need To Argue" to heartbreaking effect.  This disc is fullscreen and has dreadful video quality. The DVD available from amazon.co.uk is widescreen and has infinitely better video."
Cinema Europe - The Other Hollywood
Cinema Europe - The Other Hollywood
"Directed 1 of the 6 episodes, "Art's Promised Land", about early Swedish cinema."
Cracker: The Mad Woman in the Attic [VHS]
Cracker: The Mad Woman in the Attic [VHS]
"Winterbottom directed this exceptional pilot for the popular UK detective series. It is only available on DVD in the US as part of a huge boxset, but can be found on an individual DVD at amazon.co.uk"
The Inspector Alleyn Mysteries, Set 1
The Inspector Alleyn Mysteries, Set 1
"Directed episode "Death at the Bar," only available in this box set."
A Star Called Henry (The Last Roundup, Vol. 1)
A Star Called Henry (The Last Roundup, Vol. 1)
"He has said in numerous interviews that this is his dream project. Doyle wrote the acclaimed miniseries "Family", which Winterbottom directed just before Butterfly Kiss."