“Dignity, always dignity” – Five great movies about moviemaking

Berberian Sound Studio (20120

Peter Strickland casts Toby Jones (above) as a timid soundman working on an Italian horror film. Endlessly odd. Stuffed with love for the form. 8½ (1963)

Marcello Mastroianni (above) plays a director trying to work his way out of artistic blockage. The great man’s famous comedy concerns a director, played by Joel McCrea (with Veronica Lake, above) who wants to make films with a message. Famous shots of Mediterranean and Brigitte Bardot (above). The title number and Good Morning are like the work of sorcerers. Sullivan’s Travels (1941)

How clever was Preston Sturges? Le Mepris (1963)

Jean-Luc Godard boldly shot provocation stars Jack Palance as a producer trying to get a film version of Homer’s Odyssey off the ground. Despite its wilful strangeness, Fellini’s monochrome dream has proved hugely influential. Singin’ in the Rain (1952)

The convulsions that came to cinema with the arrival of sound inspire a great Stanley Donen musical, for which star Gene Kelly (above) gets a co-directing credit. This film’s message is: no message is necessary.