He was the living legend of Bulgarian cinema. The first film he directed is called On a Small Island and today this has a symbolic sounding. Because Rangel Valchanov himself remains a lonely island of talent and beautiful craziness in Bulgarian cinema – he has been awarded dozens of prizes but still often remains uncomprehended.
In Bulgaria, the communist regime banned On a Small Island on ideological grounds. The regime's position changed only when the film gained international acknowledgement – awards at festivals in Prague and Melbourne. His anti-war The Sun and the Shadow also enjoyed great world success and was awarded prizes in San Francisco and Los Alamos (USA), Karlovy Vary, Moscow, Melbourne, Cannes. Rangel Valchanov's non-conformist, uncompromising cinema, however, continues vexing the communist authorities. Thus, after creating such films as The Inspector and the Night, She-wolf and Aesopus, the director was forced to move to and work in the Czech Republic. There he shooted Chance (1970) and Face Under Mask (1971) – works original in terms of message and form, appreciated by few specialists.
Among director's best films rank also The Investigating Magistrate and the Forest (1975), With Love and Tenderness, Where Are You Going?, Where Do We Go From Here?. And his life's masterpiece, his confession, The Unknown Soldier's Patent Leather Shoes. With this work of his, coloured in wisdom and fantasy explosions, director proved his mastery and artistry on a world scale. Member of the European Film Academy, Rangel Valchanov was elected Number 1 film director in XX century by his Bulgarian colleagues. His reaction was the following: 'Art that wins honours loses its honour'.
1958 On a Small Island
1960 First Lesson
1962 Sun and Shadow
1963 The Inspector and the Night
1965 The She-Wolf
1966 Jesse James Vs. Lokum Shekerov)
1967 Пътешествие между два бряга (Journey between Two Shores
1970 Face under a Mask
1973 Flight to the Ropotamo
1975 The Investigating Magistrate and the Forest
1978 With Love and Tenderness
1979 The Unknown Soldier's Patent Leather Shoes
1983 Last Wishes
1986 Where Are You Going?
1988 Which Way Now a.ka. Where Do We Go From Here?
1990 Love Is a Willful Bird
1993 Fatal Tenderness
2007 Which Way Today