Michael Winterbottom

"Quibbles aside, Britain is certainly lucky to have a director like Winterbottom, a genuine independent who works with autonomy, speed and at the edge of technology, politics and taste. Yet there isn't one of his films that wouldn't have benefited from more attention. It's tantalizing to think what he'd be capable of if he learned the art of patience." - Lloyd Hughes (The Rough Guide to Film, 2007)

Michael Winterbottom

Director / Screenwriter / Editor
(1961- ) Born March 29, Blackburn, Lancashire, England
21st Century's Top 100 Directors

Key Production Countries: UK, USA, France
Key Genres: Drama, Period Film, Romantic Drama, Road Movie, Comedy, Romance, Ensemble Film, Showbiz Comedy, Docudrama
Key Collaborators: Andrew Eaton (Producer), Marcel Zyskind (Cinematographer), Frank Cottrell Boyce (Screenwriter), Trevor Waite (Editor), Mark Tildesley (Production Designer), Peter Christelis (Editor), Shirley Henderson (Leading Character Actress), Steve Coogan (Leading Actor), Rob Brydon (Leading Actor), Mags Arnold (Editor), Michael Nyman (Composer), Mat Whitecross (Director/Editor)

"Winterbottom has come out of British television, full of ideas but blessed with practical need and an urge to tell different stories. Let the unity of character settle in as it may. But it seems to me, already, that Winterbottom does have a theme: that of lost souls who are putting on a busy and ingenious display of being safe and sound. He is working in the mainstream, and he may have no higher urge than to be versatile and entertaining. I will settle for that." - David Thomson (The New Biographical Dictionary of Film, 2002)
"Visionary director who got his start in British TV as director of two documentaries focusing on the life and career of filmmaker Ingmar Bergman… He is known to be a director who often employs a fairly loose style when making a film, giving it a raw, somewhat documentary feel." - The Film Encyclopedia, 2012
"Michael Winterbottom is one of the most impressive talents to have emerged from contemporary British cinema… Winterbottom is a remarkably prolific film-maker, with eleven features completed in the same number of years. The range of subjects has been highly diverse, incorporating genre elements, literary adaptation and stories torn from the headlines. His films often combine realism with an experimental aesthetic which mirrors his passion for European art cinema giants like Fassbinder and Fellini." - Robert Shail (British Film Directors: A Critical Guide, 2007)
The diversity and often confounding variety of Michael Winterbottom's projects are in some sense a throwback to Hollywood's contract days, when a director was treated as little more than a hired hand and was forced to make the most of the material given to him. However, the comparison ends when you account for Winterbottom's risky subject matter and apparent aversion to repetition and conformity… Frustratingly, for fans of the auteur theory, few of Winterbottom's films have much in common thematically or stylistically, besides the fact that each has been generally well accomplished in its own right." - Joshua Klein (501 Movie Directors, 2007)
"After studying at Oxford, he worked as a television editor before moving into directing documentaries. His first feature film was Butterfly Kiss (1995). He is known for creating stark and edgy dramas, often filmed using hand-held cameras and improvisational techniques." - Chambers Film Factfinder, 2006
"A talented and intelligent British filmmaker of intense and often introspective relationship dramas." - The Hollywood.com Guide to Film Directors, 2004
"Winterbottom may be the most restlessly prolific British director alive: he’s made an impressive 14 films since the millennium, and one TV series, ranging from political dramas (A Mighty Heart) to futuristic love stories (Code 46) and period neo-noir (The Killer Inside Me)." - Tim Robey (The Telegraph, 2013)
"I don't particularly like the idea that there's an arc to the story and that therefore in this scene you have to convey this bit of information or emotion. I like more the feeling that, of course, there is a shape to the story, but that each scene should feel right, should be true at that moment, and that gradually you accumulate these moments of truth until you get enough of them together that it becomes a story that's interesting." - Michael Winterbottom
TSPDT Guide
Highly Recommended
Wonderland (1999)
Recommended
Jude (1996), The Claim (2000), Tristram Shandy: A Cock and Bull Story (2005) , The Road to Guantanamo [co-directed by Mat Whitecross] (2006)
Worth a Look
Welcome to Sarajevo (1997), 24 Hour Party People (2002) , In This World (2002) , The Shock Doctrine [co-directed by Mat Whitecross] (2009), The Trip (2010) , The Killer Inside Me (2010)
Approach with Caution
Butterfly Kiss (1994), Code 46 (2003), 9 Songs (2004), A Mighty Heart (2007), Trishna (2011)
Acclaimed Films / IMDB Filmography
21st Century's Most Acclaimed Films
Michael Winterbottom / Favourite Films
Amarcord (1973) Federico Fellini, Breathless (1960) Jean-Luc Godard, Cries and Whispers (1972) Ingmar Bergman.
Source: BBC: Calling the Shots (2003)
Amazon Products
Films / Books
    The Killer Inside Me
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