The 10 Best Comeback Movies From Popular Directors
Greatness takes time.
Due to the prolificity of some directors, audiences have less patience and don't understand the time and effort it takes to make a film. From conception to pre-production to shooting, and then to post-production, the birth of a film is a daunting task.
Whether due to being engrossed in other projects or not being able to realize their dreams, many well-known directors have large gaps between films. Often revered for their "lack of work," these filmmakers may have spent their time between films, but they returned with big hits.
'Under the Skin' (2013) - 9 Years After Previous Film
Jonathan Glazer was one of the most versatile filmmakers of his time, a versatile director of features, shorts, commercials and music videos. After polarizing critics and audiences with the 2004 film "Birth," Glaeser rose to fame nine years before directing "Under the Skin," about a foreigner, loosely based on the Michael Faber novel. Starmen drive around Scotland, luring men into their vans.
Although a bit of a mystery, the film has garnered critical acclaim, with some outlets even calling it one of the best films of the decade. In the years during his absence from film production, Glazer has mainly turned to Directed commercials, including Sony and Cadbury. Having not made a film since Under the Skin, his next film, said to be a Martin Amis adaptation, will be highly anticipated.
'Margaret' (2011) - 11 Years After Previous Film
After filming wrapped in 2005, Kenneth Lonergan's tragic epic Margaret languished in post-production hell for several years. The movie, which has shot to fame since its release, tells the story of a young woman who witnesses a bizarre accident and tries to hold someone accountable. Though now considered one of the best films of the 2010s, the film was a commercial flop, grossing just under $600,000 against a $14 million budget.
Lonergan spent most of the 2000s perfecting Margaret, a feat he accomplished but which resulted in multiple lawsuits that stalled other potential projects. Lonergan was also a well-known playwright and also worked in theater in those years. Lonergan, who has directed just three films to date, most recently the Oscar-winning Manchester by the Sea, has cemented himself as the reigning master of grief and loss.
'Women Talking' (2022) - 10 Years After Previous Film
One of the brightest and most sensitive young actors of her generation, Sarah Polley made a natural transition to filmmaking with the 2006 TV drama "Far From Her". After directing the comedy "Take this Waltz" The critically acclaimed documentary The Stories We Tell, Polly won't be made into a film until 2022's Talking Women, about a group of women in an isolated colony as they struggle to reconcile their faith after a series of attacks.
Based on the critically acclaimed novel by Miriam Toews, the film was critically acclaimed and appeared on numerous critics' lists of the best films of 2022. After her 2012 documentary, Polley turned her attention to television, including working on the critically acclaimed 2017 show Alias Grace. With Women Talking, Polley has re-established herself as one of the most caring and observant directors working today.
'Private Life' (2018) - 11 Years After Previous Film
One of the best ears in cinema today, Tamara Jenkins has a real knack for capturing vivid human relationships. Jenkins spent nine years between her first two films and another 11 years before making Private Lives. Starring Katherine Hahn and Paul Giamatti, the film follows a New York couple struggling to conceive and have a baby whose lives change when their niece comes to live with them.
When asked about her filmmaking hiatus, Jenkins rightfully attributed the problems to "systemic" problems in Hollywood, telling The Washington Post that "there's something in the water". Biting and hilarious, private life success will hopefully encourage supporters to deliver Jenkins has a blank canvas ready for her next project.
'A Passage to India' (1984) - 14 Years After Previous Film
A Passage to India is the long awaited work of David Lean. Work on an adaptation of E.M. Forster's novel had been in progress since 1960, but after Forster's death in 1970, copyright issues for the novel became easier to resolve. The film is an epic tale of the relationship between British and Indian characters during British Raj.
After tepid criticism of Lean's previous film, Ryan's Daughter, the director is writing He ran into a lot of problems with his next project, including trying to adapt what would eventually become Roger Donaldson's 1984 film The Bounty. A Passage to India received positive reviews and was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, the final film for the cinema giant.
'Eyes Wide Shut' (1999) - 12 Years After Previous Film
Famed director Stanley Kubrick's final film was an enigmatic masterpiece. An erotic daydream, Eye Opener was notable when it released for its nude scenes, long takes and relationships between its stars. Starring then-couple Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, the movie follows a doctor's dizzying journey after accepting a confession from his wife.
By 1999, Kubrick had Known for his obsession and the rarity of his photographs, there was a 7-year hiatus between the two films made before Eyes Opening. Originally conceived as a sex-comedy romp, Kubrick set his sights on adapting Arthur Schnitzler's source material after 2001: A Space Odyssey. Although Kubrick never saw the final cut, many say Kubrick considered the film one of his crowning achievements.
'Damsels in Distress' (2011) - 13 Years After Previous Film
Whit Stillman, best known for her '90s "Bourgeois in Love" trilogy, was one of the decade's preeminent writers. Stillman was missing from the 21st-century filmmaking space until his 2011 film, Girls in Distress. Led by a cast of actors, the film follows a group of female college students trying to change a male-dominated campus.
Stillman's exclusion from directing in the 2000s was not without trying. Stillman has a number of unproduced or unfinished projects, including an adaptation of Christopher Buckley's Little Green Men. Although his last film was shot in 2016, it was a financial success, giving hope that there are more Stillman films in the pipeline.
'The Thin Red Line' (1998) - 20 Years After Previous Film
Perhaps more than any other director, Terrence Malick has been hailed as an elusive figure of mystery He became a cinematic figure due to the ethereal nature of his work and the rarity of his projects. It took 20 years for Malick to release his next film, The Thin Red Line, following 1978's Days of Heaven. Cast by some of the greatest actors of their generation, the film follows a group of soldiers in the fictional version of the Battle of Mount Austin.
In the gap year between the two films, Malick wrote several scripts, including Q, and Malick has since used the project as inspiration for Tree of Life and Time Travel. Nominated for seven Academy Awards and voted one of the best films of the '90s by multiple outlets, Malick's spiritual warfare epic seemed worth the wait.
'Tar' (2022) - 16 Years After Previous Film
Tar is the return of one of today's greatest filmmakers. Before Tar, director Todd Field directed only two feature films, almost all of which were masterpieces of other directors. Starring Cate Blanchett, the film follows fictional composer and conductor Lydia Tar in a groundbreaking stunt.
After the dazzling 2006 drama "Little Children", Field has been involved in multiple exciting projects that have never been seen Includes the Mexican Revolution epic starring Leonardo DiCaprio or Christian Bale, an adaptation of Cormac McCarthy's "Blood Meridian" and a 20-hour limited edition of Jonathan Franzen's "Purity" episodes. Fans can lament Field's long absence, but in the end, it's nice to have him back in the movies.
'Songs from the Second Floor' (2000) - 25 Years After Previous Film
Director Roy Anderson is now considered one of the defining voices of Swedish cinema, but this was not always the case. Known for his long takes and absurd humor, Anderson found his way into the mainstream conscience with his dark comedy, Song from the Second Floor. As the first of his "life trilogy," the film presents incoherent vignettes that question the nature of everyday life.
Andersen's second film, Gilliaps, was criticized, with many critics calling it pretentious. In the years that followed, Anderson rose to prominence in the advertising world, directing more than 400 productions to date. "Song on the Second Floor" won the Cannes Jury Prize, which may prove that it takes time for a director to hone his skills.