Five Favourite Films with Ang Lee

The Oscar-winner explains his picks.

by | November 12, 2009 | Comments

Ang Lee

The rule that no two Ang Lee movies are ever the same is confidently kept intact with the release of his latest, Taking Woodstock, a comedy about the true story behind the Woodstock music festival in 1969. It follows romantic wartime drama Lust, Caution and the Oscar-winning Brokeback Mountain on the director’s CV and arrives in UK cinemas this week.

As RT sits down with Lee to ask his five favourite films, he’s keen to point out that if we’d asked him another day we’d have received an entirely different list. “It’s a hard one to answer,” he tells us. “I could give 50, or 100. I’ll throw out 5 that come into my head.”


Ang Lee

Tokyo Story

Tokyo Story

“It’s one of the greatest, if not the greatest family drama in my opinion. It’s very Eastern, which really grabbed my heart. Everything is very peaceful, nothing too dramatic, but at the end it really gives you the bite that somehow life is disappointing. I love that theme. It shows a very subtle change in life but by being subtle he shows the essence of live, which is change. Nothing will stand still and the only thing that will never change is the principle that things will change. In a very subdued way, it really transmitted that idea to me. It’s very lifelike.”

Click on a thumbnail below.

Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story

The Bicycle Thief
The Bicycle Thief

Persona
Persona

2001: A Space Odyssey
2001: A Space Odyssey

Lebanon
Lebanon


Ang Lee

The Bicycle Thief

The Bicycle Thief

“I was brought up with melodrama and I got taken [to see it] and really cried my eyes out — I’ve seen it many times since. It’s something I could do really easily, melodrama, but the neo-realism Italian directors can really upscale the genre to a really philosophical social state. That’s really incredible; they can transcend that drama.”

Click on a thumbnail below.

Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story

The Bicycle Thief
The Bicycle Thief

Persona
Persona

2001: A Space Odyssey
2001: A Space Odyssey

Lebanon
Lebanon


Ang Lee

Persona

Persona

“I’m a big Bergman fan. His movie, Virgin Spring, changed my life. It really fit me, it was the first R film I saw when I was 18 growing up in Taiwan and I was electrified. And then I watched more of his movies and Persona is my favourite.”

Click on a thumbnail below.

Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story

The Bicycle Thief
The Bicycle Thief

Persona
Persona

2001: A Space Odyssey
2001: A Space Odyssey

Lebanon
Lebanon


Ang Lee

2001: A Space Odyssey

2001: A Space Odyssey

“Yesterday I wore a particular shirt, which was Kubrick’s favourite shirt. His last picture was costumed by an English costume designer who I used three times. She passed away a couple of years ago, but she said Kubrick had seven sets of this particular shirt. He’d only wear that shirt every day, so she made one for me and I love it. I just worship Kubrick. 2001, I couldn’t really figure out what it was but I saw it when I was young and it captured me. It’s like an acid trip! [laughs]”

Click on a thumbnail below.

Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story

The Bicycle Thief
The Bicycle Thief

Persona
Persona

2001: A Space Odyssey
2001: A Space Odyssey

Lebanon
Lebanon


Ang Lee

Lebanon

Lebanon

“It’s not my favourite movie — I could go on for many movies I liked — but this year, it’s this Israeli movie. I was on the jury in Venice and we gave it the Golden Lion. It’s really gripping. The whole movie is shot from the inside of a tank and it’s so effective. It’s really exciting moviemaking and quite special. It won’t make it to my all-time great movie list, but for this year, it was something that really impressed me.”

Click on a thumbnail below.

Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story

The Bicycle Thief
The Bicycle Thief

Persona
Persona

2001: A Space Odyssey
2001: A Space Odyssey

Lebanon
Lebanon


Taking Woodstock is out in UK cinemas on Friday.

Tag Cloud

Pixar Winners MSNBC historical drama free movies Columbia Pictures Walt Disney Pictures war Women's History Month crime drama unscripted transformers BBC spider-man Crunchyroll RT History Trivia Comics on TV sequel werewolf what to watch President 2015 hist Toys cults YouTube Red TV Land Mystery Writers Guild of America Video Games television Starz spain The Arrangement Captain marvel jamie lee curtis Spectrum Originals Polls and Games TCA 2017 Nickelodeon YouTube Premium green book Marathons ESPN strong female leads Paramount Opinion binge Television Academy Best and Worst cops Tumblr series Peacock Mudbound Sci-Fi Spike IFC Films cancelled television Action The Purge Comic Book The CW Apple TV Plus Interview Teen singing competition comic El Rey YouTube Disney Plus Britbox WGN Set visit adaptation Grammys Drama dramedy Film Horror romance Certified Fresh Martial Arts Musicals foreign romantic comedy comiccon 2020 007 Mary Tyler Moore Lucasfilm supernatural justice league LGBT breaking bad Rock period drama video APB elevated horror psychological thriller SundanceTV Disney streaming service renewed TV shows Summer documentary 21st Century Fox American Society of Cinematographers Discovery Channel Food Network Infographic festivals kids Freeform First Look Reality Competition Music GoT A24 TBS thriller Anna Paquin TIFF facebook GIFs Showtime HBO Max Hulu serial killer hispanic Red Carpet dragons The Witch Ellie Kemper Year in Review Nat Geo slashers science fiction WarnerMedia New York Comic Con harry potter Crackle Comedy Central MCU screenings Baby Yoda Cartoon Network DC Comics TruTV Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Quiz Rocky Marvel Studios CBS rotten movies we love Hallmark Christmas movies CMT finale Film Festival TLC joker Epix Brie Larson Pet Sematary Amazon History Christmas First Reviews Syfy 24 frames Superheroes doctor who diversity Cosplay reboot discovery Vudu politics SDCC richard e. Grant 71st Emmy Awards movies CBS All Access Creative Arts Emmys quibi Biopics tv talk latino Winter TV HBO sag awards Countdown Stephen King true crime YA space Chernobyl cancelled TV series crime thriller GLAAD Podcast Logo Classic Film BBC America 45 Pirates Black Mirror zero dark thirty streaming Elton John zombies Oscars Pride Month Emmys FXX Arrowverse Ghostbusters Spring TV Western docudrama cinemax MTV Box Office Pop Super Bowl Sundance Now toy story Valentine's Day cooking name the review Cannes Trophy Talk Esquire game show casting Marvel Television composers SXSW TV E3 ABC Family 2016 TCM Sony Pictures Academy Awards DGA natural history NYCC political drama Paramount Network sitcom See It Skip It The Walking Dead TNT Mary poppins USA Network OWN Warner Bros. versus social media Nominations cats Turner Classic Movies Holidays mockumentary Tarantino Superheroe 2018 Lifetime cancelled FX travel vampires Fall TV cancelled TV shows DC streaming service Heroines stand-up comedy south america Hallmark PBS Amazon Prime Video VICE revenge nature Endgame boxoffice crime Rom-Com biography Watching Series batman Disney Channel disaster psycho National Geographic Star Wars San Diego Comic-Con Lionsgate adventure Adult Swim Election blockbuster Binge Guide Character Guide comics mutant Animation Fantasy ghosts Emmy Nominations ratings screen actors guild spanish language sports Awards directors canceled TV shows animated award winner E! cartoon Comedy Song of Ice and Fire Musical Trailer Mindy Kaling Universal DirecTV Ovation Acorn TV Tubi Reality RT21 TCA Winter 2020 Kids & Family Sneak Peek ITV Netflix Christmas movies AMC Chilling Adventures of Sabrina CW Seed Turner Holiday BET spy thriller medical drama Sundance police drama CNN 20th Century Fox book robots Sundance TV Rocketman Fox News anime Awards Tour Netflix Disney LGBTQ Country technology Photos NBC Dark Horse Comics witnail theme song Disney+ Disney Plus crossover Masterpiece Amazon Prime dc USA IFC Lifetime Christmas movies spinoff TV renewals 2019 Premiere Dates A&E anthology Apple TV+ blaxploitation dceu children's TV independent Shondaland Tomatazos TCA 2017 aliens Avengers golden globes Marvel VH1 christmas movies canceled Extras talk show miniseries game of thrones cars teaser Star Trek X-Men Family PaleyFest indie DC Universe FOX Bravo halloween Calendar zombie Mary Poppins Returns Schedule Apple Shudder ABC based on movie Thanksgiving OneApp