Movie Monday: Directors

Week 2:


Directors are the guys who have made our favorite (and least favorite) movies. Let’s take a look at some notable directors.

Steven Spielberg 

Known for: Jaws, Indiana Jones, ET, Jurassic Park, Schindler’s List, Saving Private Ryan

Recent Projects: The Adventures of Tintin, War Horse, Lincoln

The tense, unnerving Jaws put him on the map.


Spielberg is known for his masterful storytelling. In Spielberg films,  normal people are typically thrown into extraordinary situations. This is why audiences flock to him: He makes films that everybody can relate to and enjoy. He establishes a strong sense of adventure in his movies. Spielberg is essentially the grandfather of Hollywood: As he rocks on his chair, he tells us stories that make us feel like kids.

James Cameron

Known for: Terminator, Aliens, The Abyss, Titanic

Recent Project: Avatar

Sci-Fi action film The Terminator put him on the map.


James Cameron is primarily known for sci-fi. He is greatly interested in the ocean, and it shows through his films. He has also directed the two highest grossing movies of all time, Avatar and Titanic. On set, he is known for leading with an iron fist, not a perfectionist but a “rightist.” He needs his film to be the best it could be.

Christopher Nolan

Known for: Memento, The Prestige, Dark Knight Trilogy, Inception

Recent Project: The Dark Knight Rises

Memento put him on the map, due to it gaining a large cult following.


What makes Christopher Nolan great is that he able to take a ridiculous premise and make it believable. Inception is a story of dream thieves, an absolutely ludicrous premise. Even more over-the-top is Memento, a story of a man who has short-term memory loss, and so he tattoos messages into his skin to remember things. Perhaps the most unbelievable of them all is Batman, a vigilante superhero who wears a bat costume and talks as if he’s been smoking for 20 years. Nolan takes ridiculous premises and makes them real.

Quentin Tarantino

Known for: Reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill

Recent Project: Django Unchained

The dialogue driven Reservoir Dogs put him on the map.                                                                                           dogstarantino

Quentin Tarantino is known for witty and memorable dialogue. His films are often controversial due to his movies’ subject matter, constant language, and violence. He is not a very child-friendly director, though his writing and directing style is undeniably one of a kind.

Martin Scorsese

Known for: Goodfellas, The Aviator, The Departed, Shutter Island, Casino

Recent Project: Hugo

Crime film Mean Streets put him on the map.                                                                                                                scorsesemean streets

Martin Scorsese is known for making crime films. His biggest hit is undoubtedly Goodfellas, a film detailing the life of a gangster. Scorsese has touched controversy, though he is best known for his crime movies featuring Italian characters and . He frequently collaborates with Robert De Niro.

M. Night Shyamalan

Known for: The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, Signs, The Last Airbender (an atrocity to film, but a great comedy)

Recent Film: After Earth

The Sixth Sense put him on the map.

sixth senseshy

Each of Shyamalan’s movies since the Sixth Sense has gotten worse reviews than the previous film, with the exception of After Earth, which received a whopping 4.9  over the Last Airbender’s 4.4. (out of 10) Shyamalan started his career off strong with the Sixth Sense, but audiences now see his name as a curse. When his name appears in trailers, people in theaters sigh audibly.

Joss Whedon

Known for: Cult TV Series (Firefly, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Angel), Serenity, The Avengers

Recent Film: Much Ado About Nothing

Cult TV series Firefly put him on the map.


Whedon is known for creating great character interaction through dialogue and confrontation. Many compliment the chemistry that he helped to create in the Avengers, for example. He developed a large following due to his TV show Firefly from 2002.

Tim Burton

Known for: Edward Scissorhands, Beetlejuice, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Recent Films: Dark Shadows, Frankenweenie

Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure put him on the map.

peewee hermanburton

Tim Burton often creates films that are odd and different, usually with Gothic or dark atmospheres. He is known for creating often off-color films, much like Guillermo del Toro, though he has taken on lighter projects. Burton frequently collaborates with Johnny Depp.

Peter Jackson

Known for: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, King Kong, The Hobbit Trilogy

Recent Project: The Hobbit Desolation of Smaug

Fantasy epic The Lord of the Rings put him on the map.

peter jacksonlotrPeter Jackson is known for having long movies and establishing universes. The Lord of the Rings and King Kong are prime examples of how Jackson can take a new, large world and make it come to life on screen. He does not have as many films on his track record as Spielberg, but the films he does create are large feats and big productions.Some other directors worth noting include:

  • The Coen Brothers
  • Guillermo del Toro
  • Michael Bay (BOOM!)

Thank you for reading! Let me know in the comments below: Who is your favorite director?



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