Sad Endings to Great Careers.

The Runner Stumbles

A Random List of Unworthy Swan Songs By Once Great Directors.

In a way, this is a neverending category since most directors last movies are a pale imitation of their glory days. In this short list, however, I will focus on those final films which are of such inferior quality that it is almost inconceivable that they could have been made by the great director in question.

Then there are the sad careers of Arthur Penn, Otto Preminger, Robert Wise, Franklin J. Schaffner and particularly, the once great John Frankenheimer, where everything they touched, after a certain point in their life turned to crap.

And Norman, my apologies if “The Statement” does not turn out to be your final film.

The Countess from Hong Kong (Charles Chaplin 1967)

The Liberation of LB Jones

The Liberation of LB Jones (William Wyler 1970)

The Only Game in Town

The Only Game in Town (George Stevens 1970)

Follow Me!

Follow Me! ( Carol Reed 1972)

A Matter of Time

A Matter of Time (Vincente Minnelli 1976)

The Runner Stumbles

The Runner Stumbles (Stanley Kramer 1979)

Buddy Buddy

Buddy Buddy (Billy Wilder 1981)

Rich and Famous

Rich and Famous. (George Cukor 1981)

Five Days Last Summer

Five Days One Summer (Fred Zinnemann 1982)

The Osterman Weekend (Sam Peckinpah 1983)

Staer 80

Star 80 (Bob Fosse 1983)

Blame it on Rio

Blame It on Rio. (Stanley Donen 1984)

8 Million Ways to Die

8 Million Ways to Die. (Hal Ashby 1986)

Stanley and Iris

Stanley and Iris. (Martin Ritt, 1990)

The Next Best Thing

The Next Best Thing (John Schlesinger 2000)

The Statement

The Statement (Norman Jewison 2003)

Dead of Winter

Everything by Arthur Penn after 1980 – All Four of Them

-Four Friends


-Dead of Winter

-Penn and Teller Get Killed

The French Connection II

Everything by John Frankenheimer after

1970 – All Sixteen of Them

The Horseman | The Iceman Cometh | Impossible Object | 99 and 44/100 % Dead | French Connection II | Black Sunday | Prophesy | The Challenge | The Holcroft Covenant | |52 Pick-Up | Dead Bang | The Fourth War | Year of the Gun | The island of Dr. Moreau | Ronin | Reindeer Games.

The Human Factor

Everything by Otto Preminger after 1965-All Six of Them

Hurry Sundown | Skidoo | Tell Me That You Love Me, Junie Moon | Such Good Friends | Rosebud | The Human Factor

The Hindenburg

Everything by Robert Wise after

1971 – All Five of Them

Two People | The Hindenburg | Audrey Rose | Star Trek: The Motion Picture | Rooftops

The Boys from Brazil

Everything by Franklin J. Schaffner after

1973 – All Six of Them

Islands in the Stream | The Boys from Brazil | Sphinx | Yes, Giorgio | Lionheart | Welcome Home

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