The Sunday Seven: Director Denis Villeneuve Movies

Denis Villeneuve is a French-Canadian director who has directed Prisoners and most recent, Sicario. He is starting to get the recognition he deserves. He is the director set to direct the new Blade Runner 4 movie and just recently announced his movie The Son which will star Jake Gyllenhaal. Villeneuve started out making French-speaking films until he made his first English language film, Prisoners. His English language film debut has well received by both audiences and critics. Like all his movies, critics seem to adore his style. He is not afraid to go dark and psychological. It is no surprise that Villeneuve has stated Alfred Hitchcock, Roman Polanski and David Cronenberg as his influence. Some also draws comparison to David Lynch when Villeneuve’s movies sometimes go to more surrealist places. Either way, I have fallen in love with his style of movies. His mixture of dark surrealist psychological film making is just what I want to see in today’s movie theatres.

Since I know many of you do not necessarily know who is Denis Villeneuve, I will be ranking his 7 best work as of right now. The list may include short films and movies as Villeneuve has done both. If you have not watched one his movies, you are seriously missing out. Let’s begin!

7. Incendies (2010)

Marked as his first breakthrough film, I personally believe this to be his least interesting movie. However, this movie went on the win multiple awards. I guess only a good director can take a really boring and repetitive storyline and make an incredible movie.


6. Next Floor (2008)

In this short film, Villeneuve really channels Lynch and Cronenberg. Although there is no dialogue, no dialogue is needed to convey the message of consumer culture. Sharp and dark, this short pin points society’s consumer problem.


5. Polytechnique (2009)

A gut wrenching true story based on the massacre of women in the École Polytechnique de Montréal. This movie showcase the emotion and just how misogyny can become violently real. The emotions he was able to create without exploiting and glorifying the situation was magnificent.


4. Maelström (2000)

One of Villeneuve’s first film, this is another film where he demonstrate just how weirdly good his movies can be. Strange and bizarre, this is still one of his best work.


3. Enemy (2013)

Grim but beautiful, Enemy is another complex movie where nothing is straightforward. Villeneuve visits back to his older days because this very a surreal and artsy film with an unconventional story.


2. Sicario (2015)

Sicario is a grim and very sad movie that showcase just how the world can be. This has to be his darkest movie yet. This and Polytechnique proves that he can produce some emotions in almost every scene. After seeing this one, it felt so wrong to live in such a dark world.


1. Prisoners (2013)

His English movie debut has to be my favourite. It was such a surprise for me because this was his first movie that I saw. His signature grittiness is really at the centre of this movie and it is what makes it so great.


Have you seen any of Denis Villeneuve’s movies? If so, what did yout think?



Add Yours
  1. Liam

    I definitely need to check out some of the films on this list. I’ve only seen Enemy and Prisoners. I really liked Enemy, thought it was brilliant. I didn’t love Prisoners though if I’m honest, I thought it was an okay film but something didn’t sit right with me. However, I did watch ages ago so maybe I’ll give it another go some time.

    • Zachary Doiron

      If you liked Enemy, watch Maelström. It has that uncoventional approach like Enemy. It is a French film, but it is really good nonetheless. If you like true stories Polytechnique and Sicario are both heart wrenching and emotional films. Oh and yes, give Prisoners another try.

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