Milos Forman

"Milos Forman stands as one of the few established foreign directors to find consistent success within the American film industry. Like Fritz Lang, Forman was an influential filmmaker in his homeland who went on to achieve equal influence in Hollywood." - Jeffrey Klenotic (The Virgin International Encyclopedia of Film, 1992)

Milos Forman

Director / Screenwriter
(1932- ) Born February 18, Cáslav, Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic)
Top 250 Directors

Key Production Countries: USA, Czechoslovakia
Key Genres: Comedy Drama, Biography, Satire, Period Film, Drama, Tragi-comedy, Musical Drama, Black Comedy
Key Collaborators: Miroslav Ondricek (Cinematographer), Patrizia von Brandenstein (Production Designer), Jaroslav Papousek (Screenwriter), Miroslav Hájek (Editor), Jan Vostrcil (Leading Character Actor), Karel Cerny (Production Designer), Vladimir Pucholt (Leading Actor), Courtney Love (Leading Actress), Brad Dourif (Leading Actor), Michael Weller (Screenwriter), Scott Alexander (Screenwriter), Larry Karaszewski (Screenwriter)

"Milos Forman has directed an impressive oeuvre of films about rebels, eccentrics, and iconoclasts. Many of them such as One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975), which earned him his first Oscar for Best Director, and The People vs. Larry Flynt (1996), pit outcasts against institutional authority, and inspire audiences to question their own societal and moral assumptions. After helping to launch the Czech New Wave with such movies as Loves of a Blonde (1965), Forman came to the United States in the early 1970s... Forman has also made a significant mark in academia working at Columbia University's film program since the 1970s. He continues to develop and occasionally direct film scripts, although none has returned him to his former glory. " - Wm. Scott Whited (501 Movie Directors, 2007)
"Although his detractors suggest that his body of work is not inventive or daring enough to warrant such a critically distinguished career, Forman is a self-confessed popular film-maker. Known as a champion of the common man, his films explore questions of personal freedom, social conformity, and the oppression of the individual. Deeply informed by his experience of living under a Communist regime, much of Forman's American work can be read as a paean to his adopted country." - Tanya Horeck (Contemporary North American Film Directors, 2002)
"A leading member of the new, anti-conformist Czechoslovak cinema which emerged in the 1960s, Forman began as a script collaborator on several films and then made two shorts which were later combined into one film (1963). One of these, Talent Competition, already looked forward to his favourite themes and methods: a quizzical, sometimes bemused, analysis of human foibles and small-town ennui." - John Gillett (The International Encyclopedia of Film, 1972)
"Although the influence of Forman's filmmaking methods may be felt even in some North American films, his lasting importance will, very probably, rest with his three Czech movies. Taking Off, a valiant attempt to show America to Americans through the eyes of a sensitive, if caustic, foreign observer, should be added to this list as well. After the mixed reception of this film, however, Forman turned to adaptations of best sellers and stage hits." - Josef Skvorecký and Rob Edelman (The St. James Film Directors Encyclopedia, 1998)
"A knack for biting satire has secured Forman's reputation as one of the top filmmaking finds from Eastern Europe since World War II." - William R. Meyer (The Film Buff's Catalog, 1978)
"The Czech films of Milos Forman reveal a gently mocking humour and a keen eye for the minutiae of human behaviour, qualities he brought to bear on his American movies." - Ronald Bergan (Film - Eyewitness Companions, 2006)
"It is interesting that with greater political freedom and commercial viability, the films of Milos Forman have become increasingly conventional. The spontaneity of his early Czech work has sadly ossified into ostentatiously decorous middlebrow entertainment." - Geoff Andrew (The Film Handbook, 1989)
"You can't become a good actor in the theatre without professional training. But theatre and films today are so far from each other that what does it mean to be professional in films? What counts is the talent and certain gifts, and personality." - Milos Forman (Directing the Film, 1976)
TSPDT Guide
Highly Recommended
Loves of a Blonde (1965) , Taking Off (1971), One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
Recommended
The Firemen's Ball (1967) , The People vs. Larry Flynt (1996)
Worth a Look
Black Peter (1964), Hair (1979), Ragtime (1981), Amadeus (1984) , Man on the Moon (1999)
Acclaimed Films / IMDB Filmography
1,000 Greatest Films
Milos Forman / Favourite Films
Amarcord (1973) Federico Fellini, American Graffiti (1973) George Lucas, Citizen Kane (1941) Orson Welles, City Lights (1931) Charles Chaplin, The Deer Hunter (1978) Michael Cimino, Les Enfants du paradis (1945) Marcel Carné, Giant (1956) George Stevens, The Godfather (1972) Francis Ford Coppola, Miracle in Milan (1951) Vittorio De Sica, Raging Bull (1980) Martin Scorsese.
Source: Sight & Sound (2002)
Amazon Products
Films / Books
    One Flew Over the Cuckoo
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