It's to my shame that when I thought of important directors up until 1 July 2017, the names that came to mind were mainly Eisenstein, Griffith, Chaplin, Gance; then Welles, Ford, Wilder, Hitchcock, Lean, Kurosawa (by reputation - I've never liked Seven Samurai or Rashomon); then Godard (a wanker), Kubrick, Coppola, Allen, Scorsese and maybe Malick. The three films Malick directed which I've seen, Badlands, Days of Heaven and The Thin Red Line, were good, very good even - but they weren't groundbreaking (and memorable) like Hawks and Huston.
I'd seen films by Antonioni (another wanker), Renoir and De Sica (wanker), and maybe Bergman's The Seventh Seal which visually seemed familiar. Unfamiliar names of other great directors were Murnau and Vigo.
My particular respect for one American director led me to Ingmar Bergman. But even then, I knew this Bergman character was generally respected, but I hadn't sought out his films.
I knew that certain playwrights, writers, composers, poets, painters, directors, architects and scientists were geniuses (geniuii). I also knew that one in a billion were beyond the genius label.
I ranked the meta-genius as Shakespeare and Mozart and Monet. In film, there wasn't a meta-genius, although I thought that Welles and Spielberg used words, music and visuals better than anything I'd experienced at age eighteen.
Shakespeare - words (absolutely everything)
Mozart - sound (almost everything) + non musical sounds
Monet - vision (everything, just about)
Braille - touch (the blind can read, and through description: see)
As for taste, I don't know how I can approach an idea of the greatest person who created something for the palate. So, I'll leave that unresolved.
Those senses, don't include the mind or any overtly spiritual aspects that the greatest beings have.
We, the beings, are essentially mind, body and spirit.
Body takes care of the senses. Mind (which includes science and maths) includes more great names than I can think of. Spirit enters a different realm (including philosophy), but in the top several would be God, Jesus, Muhammad and Plato.
And then along came Ingmar Bergman, an extraordinary artist, who took three of the senses, then added Mind and Spirit and came up with a body of work which is like Shakespeare meets Mozart (where sound including the lack of musical sound or sound itself) meets Monet (where an impression of something equals the real thing - like a symbol), meets Galileo (science), Jesus and Plato (thought).
I have learned in the last seven weeks that I am an infant and July 1 2017 was my first day at school.
postscript: Woody Allen has made many excellent films that push the boundaries of combining ideas, story and thinking in non-linear forms, and Woody Allen's vision of the world as influenced by Ingmar Bergman (as influenced by Strindberg) has led me to a new appreciation - in film - of mind, body and soul.
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