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Lists: 50 Best Movies of All Time, Again


It's a list that keeps on giving: the 50 best movies of all time. With this global critics list at The One-Line Review, at least, the more things change, the more they stay the same. There's Citizen Kane at number one, and having shown the movie to my USC film criticism class, I get why the movie holds on to that top spot, decade after decade. The damn thing holds up. Pauline Kael said it was a comedy and she was right. It's entertaining, funny, unique, utterly timely and resonant today. Kids understand it perfectly. It doesn't age, even in black-and-white.

Much as I admire Vertigo, I prefer several other Hitchcocks: Notorious, North by Northwest, Psycho, and The Birds among them. How telling that there are three Hitchcocks in the top thirteen and two Stanley Kubricks in the top ten.

The other top ten selections are fine, but I would want a Buster Keaton (The General, 33) or Billy Wilder (Sunset Boulevard, 17) or John Ford (The Searchers, 12) or or Howard Hawks (Bringing Up Baby) in there. And Hawks is so out of favor that he didn't make the top 50 at all.

The full list is on the jump.

The 50 Greatest Films

Films receiving the same number of votes have been separated by their ranking on individual lists.

  1. Citizen Kane (1941) .. Orson Welles
  2. Vertigo (1958) .. Alfred Hitchcock
  3. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) .. Stanley Kubrick
  4. The Godfather (1972) .. Francis Ford Coppola
  5. Casablanca (1942) .. Michael Curtiz
  6. The Third Man (1949) .. Carol Reed
  7. Taxi Driver (1976) .. Martin Scorsese
  8. Seven Samurai (1954) .. Akira Kurosawa
  9. Psycho (1960) .. Alfred Hitchcock
  10. Dr. Strangelove, Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964) .. Stanley Kubrick
  11. The Godfather: Part II (1974) .. Francis Ford Coppola
  12. The Searchers (1956) .. John Ford
  13. Rear Window (1954) .. Alfred Hitchcock
  14. Singin' in the Rain (1952) .. Stanley Donen & Gene Kelly
  15. Persona (1966) .. Ingmar Bergman
  16. Chinatown (1974) .. Roman Polanski
  17. Sunset Boulevard (1950) .. Billy Wilder
  18. Sunrise (1927) .. F.W. Murnau
  19. Tokyo Story (1953) .. Yasujiro Ozu
  20. Pulp Fiction (1994) .. Quentin Tarantino
  21. La Règle du Jeu (1939) .. Jean Renoir
  22. 8½ (1963) .. Federico Fellini
  23. Lawrence of Arabia (1962) .. David Lean
  24. The Night of the Hunter (1955) .. Charles Laughton
  25. Apocalypse Now (1979) .. Francis Ford Coppola
  26. City Lights (1931) .. Charles Chaplin
  27. Bicycle Thieves (1948) .. Vittorio De Sica
  28. Annie Hall (1977) .. Woody Allen
  29. Touch of Evil (1958) .. Orson Welles
  30. The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928) .. Carl Theodor Dreyer
  31. Blade Runner (1982) .. Ridley Scott
  32. M (1931) .. Fritz Lang
  33. The General (1927) .. Clyde Bruckman & Buster Keaton
  34. Some Like It Hot (1959) .. Billy Wilder
  35. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) .. Sergio Leone
  36. The Four Hundred Blows (1959) .. Franτois Truffaut
  37. Duck Soup (1933) .. Leo McCarey
  38. Double Indemnity (1944) .. Billy Wilder
  39. Raging Bull (1980) .. Martin Scorsese
  40. All About Eve (1950) .. Joseph L. Mankiewicz
  41. A Clockwork Orange (1971) .. Stanley Kubrick
  42. The Apartment (1960) .. Billy Wilder
  43. La Grande Illusion (1937) .. Jean Renoir
  44. Ikiru (1952) .. Akira Kurosawa
  45. It's a Wonderful Life (1946) .. Frank Capra
  46. Rashomon (1950) .. Akira Kurosawa
  47. The Wizard of Oz (1939) .. Victor Fleming
  48. Do the Right Thing (1989) .. Spike Lee
  49. The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966) .. Sergio Leone
  50. L'Avventura (1960) .. Michelangelo Antonioni


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Variety blogger Anne Thompson is your trusted source for film industry news. She tracks Hollywood, Indiewood, awards season and film festivals for this daily blog.
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