31 January 2008

RON HOWARD - Populist Film maker With an Under rated Filmography

Ron Howard has gradually become one of the most commercially viable Hollywood directors working today. His films are very mainstream and I would say that he is a populist film maker in that he makes films which work well as respectable entertainment. Like many of the directors who worked under the studio system, the films which seemed to slip through the net did not find an audience at the time are the films which have helped to salvage the career of many film makers who were initially dismissed and then later reappraised using the auteur theory as a critical tool for analysis. Even today, the films which Ron Howard has directed that have not been box office dynamite and have been dismissed by critics are the films which are infinitely more superior and interesting to study. The Missing, Cinderella Man, EdTv, The Paper and Night Shift are films which have underperformed at the box office but it these films which define Ron Howard as a film maker, unlike The DaVinci Code or Apollo 13. Ron Howard does have considerable range for a commercial film maker, having made a western (The Missing), a boxing biopic (Cinderella Man - possibly his best film), EdTV (Comedy and biting satire on reality TV), The Paper (Newspaper Film), and Night Shift (film noir comedy). Of course, many consider his best film to be 'A Beautiful Mind' for which he received an unexpected oscar for best director.

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