Known for critically acclaimed films such as Naked and Topsy-Turvy, Mike Leigh’s vast knowledge about films and direction comes from his stint at four film institutes. He is the name behind one of the biggest masterpieces of the film industry, Secrets and Lies.
Leigh picks his favourites from the Criterion DVD Library. In this video, Mike Leigh talks about his favourite movies of all time and the profound impact they made on him.
Some of the films that he mentions in this video are Vivre Sa Vie, Bicycle Thieves and Jules and Jim. Leigh is fond of films that depict realities of life and the astonishments of the different circumstances in its most raw form. This is clearly evident in most of his works that capture the reality of life perfectly.
Leigh is known for his perfectionist nature that arises from his desire to get the nuances of real life in place. He has got a reputation to make actors go through several rehearsals to make it look like someone’s living the story on screen and not just acting it out.
His remarkable slice-of-life themes are a poignant take on everyday struggles of common people with their social life and relationships. Leigh was probably one of the first directors to incorporate improv method in his films and plays. Improv basically is an organic build-up of the characters by actors wherein the narratives aren’t scripted but manufactured spontaneously as the story demands.
Felicitated with Awards at Cannes and with Academy Awards, Leigh has been applauded for his work time and again.