The most striking thing about this list is that the critics list encompasses the years 1927-1968 with the 20s and 50s most heavily represented while the directors cover 1941-1979 with the 70s most heavily represented (4 films!). Nothing in either list comes from the last 33 years. In contrast, Sight and Sound’s poll from 1972 for example had 3 films from the 60s (granted the 60s was probably the best ever decade for films in my opinion). The first film to show up from the last 33 years is IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE at #24 followed by MULHOLLAND DR. at #28, which takes over as the Lynch favorite from BLUE VELVET (I concur).
400 BLOWS overtakes JULES AND JIM and MIRROR overtakes ANDREI RUBLEV as the critical Truffaut and Tarkovsky favorites, respectively. I also approve. Lots of silents in the critics’ top 10, but Keaton and Chaplin drop
considerably, but then I don’t think THE GENERAL and CITY LIGHTS are nearly their best.
I love the results. Very pleased to see Taxi Driver emerging as Scorsese’s finest- it’s the only one of his films in the critics’ top fifty and gets #5(!) on the directors’ poll. The amount of silent films the critics select is pretty shocking too. And with Mulholland Drive at #28, I’m very glad to see Lynch receiving the respect he deserves (even if I personally prefer Blue Velvet). Another surprise on the critics’ poll- the low ranking of the Godfather pictures. I figured the split might hurt them a bit, but wow. #21 and #31 seems a bit low.
And most importantly, Kane is toppled and Hitchcock takes his rightful place at the top- where he has always belonged.
@ Zvelf, I think this is the first poll to really show how cinephelia has changed post-DVD (esp. Criterion) and post-internet/VOD. I mean, hell, for a couple bucks and a few hours you too can watch Mirror right here on this website!
Nice to see some love for Lynch masterpiece, i knew they weren’t going to include them but i miss Barry Lyndon and Apur Sansar in the top50.
It does bother me that there aren’t more films post 1970 on this list, since this continues the (wrong) assumption that film is a “dead” art (like jazz) or that the last 40+ years of cinema aren’t that great. Hell, the only movie on the list from the 80s (Shoah) is all about an event that happened in the 40s.
I agree with your assessment, Adrock.
Scottie, I am glad that TAXI DRIVER supplanted the overrated RAGING BULL on both lists, although KING OF COMEDY is my favorite Scorsese.
I’m sorry to see these perennial top 50s drop:
CHILDREN OF PARADISE
THE THIRD MAN
TOUCH OF EVIL
…but I’m happy to see these drop:
LAWRENCE OF ARABIA
THE NIGHT OF THE HUNTER
Too bad SOME LIKE IT HOT didn’t get replaced with SUNSET BLVD. Also, too many Dreyer films.
“Also, too many Dreyer films.”
Seriously. Ordet AND Gertrud?
Yeah, the amount of Dreyer films surprised me too. And I find it odd how the most recent film on the Critics’ Top Ten was 2001: A Space Odyssey. In 2002, the most recent was The Godfather Part II, so there’s now an even greater distance between the age of the films and the year of the poll; we’ve moved from 1974-2002 to 1968-2012.
Taxi Driver is Scorsese’s masterpiece and in my top five of all time, so yeah very happy to see it replace Raging Bull (which while very good, I was always a bit perplexed that was CW as being his best for a long time).
Yeah, Taxi Driver has it all over Raging Bull. Taxi Driver certainly deserves its ranking as one of THE all-time great films.
I’m also surprised no Malick films were in the top 50 considering he seems to be almost as popular with cinephiles as Kubrick. Maybe they all canceled each other out?
VERTIGO?!?!?! I am so in the minority on this one. I like it very much, but the GREATEST ever made when the likes of INTOLERANCE, LAWRENCE OF ARABIA, GOODFELLAS, CITIZEN KANE, TOUCH OF EVIL and NOTORIOUS are out there?!?!?
I feel your pain Jaspar.
I too would love see Notorious prefered over Vertigo but it seems to me there there is a certain sense of joylessness creeping into the critics list. Vertigo, while stylistically impressive, is a good deal less fun than other Hitchcock works. It is that sense of play in Hitchcock that really appeals to audiences – but critics seem to be prefering works of a more dour nature.
Vertigo is neck and neck with Psycho as my favorite Hitchcock- I’m just glad to see The Master top the list.
Ouch! Citizen Kane should not have dropped, but oh well. Vertigo isn’t my favourite Hitchcock, that would be Rear Window. Glad to see 2001: A Space Odyssey in the top ten, very deserving. Very shocked not to see a Visconti on the list, The Leopard is on my personal top ten. Also no M, but Metropolis? Not good in my opinion, M is a masterpiece.
I’m surprised at Shoah, Satantango, Close-Up, and Histoire du Cinema. I guess the films of the last decade that have been canonized are In the Mood for Love and Mullholland Drive. I was hoping for a Tree of Life showing, but that didn’t happen. I haven’t seen 9 of the top 50. I don’t like the list as much as the 2002 one. I think Citizen Kane should have stayed at 1. Kurosawa, La Dolce Vita, and the Godfather should be higher. I’m happy that Breathless is 13. But where is Touch of Evil, Third Man, Barry Lyndon, Children of Paradise, Dr. Strangelove, Lawrence of Arabia, Grand Illusion, Jules and Jim and Fanny and Alexander?
Why is the critics’ list considered more important than the directors’?
In any case, Close-up had four votes from the critics back in 2002, so it had already come close ten years ago. And Shoah isn’t much of a surprise. It was already in the top 50 the last time. Bergman certainly took a hit though. He had three films in the top 50 the last time, none of which was Persona, which is his only film that made the cut this time. I guess he traded places with Tarkovsky who only had Rublev the last time.
I’m also surprised to see Tokyo Story get the top spot with the directors. It just doesn’t seem like the sort of film they’d select as number one judging by their voting history, but not that it’s a bad thing. A welcome surprise more than anything else.
THANK GOD CITZEN KANE WAS KNOCKED OFF IT’S THRONE——while I haven’t seen vertigo, I find Hitchcock very entertaining. I found Citzen Kane very dull and boring, and I can never finish it. I know, I’m being a little like armound white here, but it’s true. Citzen Kane is dull an boring. Vertigo is now on my must see list.
Ok, how do I find all the individual directors’ lists?
@MAXIMILIAN BERCOVICZ they will be out in 2 weeks.
Congratulations! You’ve just been given a ten year sentence of cinephile backlash. Since you might as well get used to it soon, I’ll start you off.
You know something, Vertigo? You’re not even the best Hitchcock movie. Rear Window, Notorious, and Psycho are all far superior to you. I know you’re real dreamy and darkly romantic, but get over yourself. You’re not that great.
See you tonight.
tokyo story and vertigo are not even among the three best films from their respective directors
North By Northwest
01EQUINOX FLOWER Yasujirô Ozu
02LATE SPRING Yasujirô Ozu
03THE RECORD OF A TENEMENT GENTLEMAN Yasujirô Ozu
04EARLY SPRING Yasujirô Ozu
05EARLY SUMMER Yasujirô Ozu
06BROTHERS AND SISTERS OF THE TODA FAMILY Yasujirô Ozu
07FLAVOR OF GREEN TEA OVER RICE Yasujirô Ozu
08THE ONLY SON Yasujirô Ozu
09FLOATING WEEDS Yasujirô Ozu
10A STORY OF FLOATING WEEDS Yasujirô Ozu
11TOKYO TWILIGHT Yasujirô Ozu
12AN AUTUMN AFTERNOON Yasujirô Ozu
Here’s the decade breakdown of the top 52 films.
1920’s – 6
1930’s – 3
1940’s – 3
1950’s – 12
1960’s – 15
1970’s – 7
1980’s – 1
1990’s – 3
2000’s – 2
The fact that there are as many films on here from the 1990’s as there are from the 1930’s and 1940’s raises my eyebrows a bit. But what can you do?
“The fact that there are as many films on here from the 1990’s as there are from the 1930’s and 1940’s raises my eyebrows a bit. But what can you do?”
I dunno…I’d say the 90s were just as good as the 30s & 40s. While I like a lot of 30s films, the coming of sound created a lot of stagey work sometimes when cameras were locked into a single set so the actors could be picked up on mics. Plus it’s well known that the 40s first half was marred by the world’s singular focus on WWII, especially in Europe (and yes I know Citizen Kane, Casablanca, and a host of other great films came out during this time).
Vertigo is the most male gaziest of an entire era of male gaze films, so I understand while critics like it so much. Anyone who says the 39 Steps or The Birds are better films is simply being contrarian.
The top fifty was a good list overall but there’s no way that Vertigo should be number one
I for one am quite happy to see Hitchcock standing tall at number one. He deserves it!! Man With A Movie Camera shouldn’t be on this list though. La Dolce Vita is a much stronger film than 8 1/2 and Tokyo Story is good but not that great of a film..nowhere near as good as 2001 or Sunrise.
If only The Rules of the Game has also been placed ahead of Kane!
If I had to reorder the current top ten, here’s what I’d do.
1. The Searchers
2. The Passion of Joan of Arc
3. Man with a Movie Camera
6. Citizen Kane
7. Tokyo Story
8. 8 1/2
9. The Rules of the Game
10. 2001: A Space Odyssey