The first Sight & Sound poll took place in 1952, when the world’s leading critics were asked to compile a list of the best films of all time. The poll has been repeated every ten years; in 1992 for the first time, Sight & Sound added a poll of directors, asking them for a parallel choice of personal favorites.
All 4 lists in 2002 looked similar to its previous ones and my question is; do you think a new modern director / film will make it to any of the top 10 lists this time?
I don’t think we will see much difference seeing as critical opinion will not have changed.
The most critically popular films are pretty entrenched. It’d be nearly impossible for a film made after the 70’s to crack the upper echelons.
I really want to see the Sight and Sound poll naming their top 100 films list. After all, we have to wait for another ten years for the next Sight and Sound poll.
And it would be very nice if you included top ten male and female stars of Film all over the world, along with the top ten Directors.
If done, wouldn’t that be a page to refer and re-refer to?
Once new blood getting more involved in the voting process the films will change some, but the top films are top films for a reasons.
The voting needs to be opened up, though, to find the great small films films that don’t really get out There for whatever reason.
I think Mulholland Dr. will make an appearance on the new list.
Mulholland Dr, In the Mood for Love and Tarr Bela/Hranitzky should do well, but i am hoping S&S stops being so dominated by the opinions of a small number of countries, UK/US, then France, especially, and branches out for a genuine international poll. I will be writing to them (again- they ignored my suggested directors to poll last time) and hope others will do likewise; we need a decent representation from Africa, Latin America and various neglected countries, instead of the usual Anglophone dominance (particularly in their Directors’ poll). I expect Bresson and Ozu to do well, and Naruse to make a mark. I would like to see new blood. The canon certainly needs freshening up. I fear Rules of the Game may fall a bit. Last time Vertigo was moving up to challenge Kane, it’ll be interesting to see if it’s now peaked or will even topple the usual winner. Tarkovsky is big on Mubi and elsewhere so i wonder if he’ll move up a notch
It’s time Satyajit Ray (like Mizoguchi) got proper credit in the US, and Indian cinema in general had more attention internationally.
I won’t be chuffed if we have loads of 2nd and 3rd rate British and US directors polled again with their heavy Anglophone leanings and reinforcement of the world cinema axis of Kurosawa, Fellini, Bergman, even Truffaut, yawn yawn
It will kind of baffle me if Tarr / Kar Wai do well but not Angelopoulos but oh well….it’s all about the academic rules of the game, neither variety nor equality.
Yes, I think ‘Mulholland Dr.’ is the most likely and maybe ‘There Will Be Blood’, and I’d say they’d just about deserve to. I’d be surprised to see any Wong Kar Wai. As brilliant as ‘In the Mood for Love’ is, I don’t think he has yet made a film to stand alongside the likes of ‘Tokyo Story’ and ‘The Rules of the Game’.
“t will kind of baffle me if Tarr / Kar Wai do well but not Angelopoulos but oh well….it’s all about the academic rules of the game, neither variety nor equality.”
Angelopoulos is a bigger name in the film world than Tarr though. After all, he has managed to convince quite a few famous actors to be in his films.
But that doesn’t excuse the relative neglect, i agree.
maybe things will change when he dies.
There’s also another reason: I can see a Tarr or Kar Wai film on a region 1 disc whenever I want. For whatever reason, that’s not the case for Angelopolous. Younger critics just aren’t seeing his films.
^^I thought most Tarr films weren’t released in the U.S yet? that’s why people tend to go for the A.E box?
anyway, the reason for the lack of dvd’s on the market is because Angelopoulos isn’t keen on home video formats and resisted dvd for a while. he also wanted too much for his films, which caused problems with both New Star and A.Eye apparently.
“As brilliant as ‘In the Mood for Love’ is, I don’t think he has yet made a film to stand alongside the likes of ‘Tokyo Story’ and ‘The Rules of the Game’.
This is kind of elitist thinking but it’s not like In the Mood for Love isn’t on par to one (not THE) of Renoir’s great films and it’s not like Tokyo Story is amongst the top of Ozu.
Charulata for example is easily superior to any of those films above, so there you go…I myself can indulge in generalizations and elitist thoughts if I want to.
Most of them are on Netflix. They’re hard to find DVDs, but they exist. Facets released them.
Whereas I had to import Traveling Players in the form of a region 2 disc on ebay, and I can’t even find Reconstruction there.
In fact, I just ordered Family Nest for $6.25 from a seller on Amazon.
I really hope L’Atalante gets back into the Top 10.
I only used ‘Tokyo Story’ because it came up in the 2002 poll. It may not be Ozu’s greatest but it is certainly one of them. Still not convinced that ‘In the Mood for Love’ is a great film, though.
“Charulata for example is easily superior to any of those films above, so there you go…I myself can indulge in generalizations and elitist thoughts if I want to.”
This is a better example of “elitist thinking”, insofar as it is written as statement of fact. I just gave my opinion on a few films, I’m not saying it’s gospel.
Don’t ask me why, as I haven’t even seen the film yet (I’m seeing it on Monday), but I would not be surprised if Malick’s Tree of Life makes the list.
Tree Of Life has a more legit shot at the 2022 list than the 2012 list. Critics are neophobes.
I could care less what critics think. Films are not beauty pageant models for people to rank and crown.
But rightly or wrongly such lists are influential- though maybe not as influential as hype for and big bucks behind many box-office blockbusters
They’re very influential. When people first become alienated from mainstream, and set out to explore classic and art films, where is the first place they look? Lists. Critic lists may be irrelevant to us, but they have tremendous influence on exposure.
Yes, it was John Kobal’s poll of critics in the late 80s that really got me hooked on world cinema, and then Time Out and Sight and Sound’s polls were viewing guides too. The individual top 10s are much more interesting than the overall top 10 in the polls; i would prefer an overall top 100 to be published, not just the top films which have been the usual suspects.
the make-up of the participants is important of course; more women and people from neglected countries would alter the outcome quite a bit, maybe not at the very top, but within the top 100. And the choice of who takes part will involve in many cases some idea in advance of their preferences/what they might vote for.
It is very difficult to select top ten today, because so many good films are produced throughout the globe. But by increasing the numbers only is not the solution. A little bit better may happen if instead of “all time” the selection is limited to the last decade only. How can we exclude Bela Tarr,Aleksandr Sokurov,Theo Angelopoulos and like others ? Otherwise we have to exclude some films from the previous choice, which will be simply unjustified. We have to think an ideal phenomena to make the list worthy of time and talents.
“All 4 lists in 2002 looked similar to its previous ones and my question is; do you think a new modern director / film will make it to any of the top 10 lists this time?”
I don’t know that the ultimate top ten lists are really that telling of change, though. If you look at the list of all films that received votes from the critics or directors , there are a fair number of reasonably contemporary films:
A.I. Artificial Intelligence Spielberg
The Addiction Ferrara
The Age of Innocence Scorsese
All about My Mother Almodóvar
Amores perros González Iñárritu
An Angel at My Table Campion
And Life Goes On… Kiarostami
The Apple S. Makhmalbaf
Ashes of Time Wong
Atanarjuat The Fast Runner Kunuk
Back to the Future Zemeckis
Baiju Bawra Bhatt
Ballad of Little Jo Greenwald
Barton Fink Coen
Bashu, The Little Stranger Beyzaï
La Belle Noiseuse Rivette
Bitter Coffee Karya
Black God, White Devil Rocha
Black Hawk Down Scott
Blind Chance Kieslowski
Blue Velvet Lynch
Boys Don’t Cry Peirce
Breaking the Waves von Trier
A Brighter Summer Day Yang
Burnt by the Sun Mikhalkov
Butterflies and Flowers Mukdasanit
By the Bluest of Seas Barnet
Cabeza de vaca Echevarria
Cairo Station Chahine
Chungking Express Wong
A City of Sadness Hou
Days of Eclipse Sokurov
Dazed and Confused Linklater
Dead Man Jarmusch
Distant Voices Still Lives Davies
Drifting Clouds Kaurismäki
L’Enfant secret Garrel
Eternity and a Day Angelopoulos
Eyes Wide Shut Kubrick
Farewell My Concubine Chen
Groundhog Day Ramis
Happy Together Wong
In the Company of Men LaBute
In the Mood for Love Wong
Jacob’s Ladder Lyne
Light Sleeper Schrader
Lost Highway Lynch
Malcolm X Lee
Man Bites Dog Belvaux, Poelvoorde
The Matrix Wachowskis
A Moment of Innocence M. Makhmalbaf
My Neighbour Totoro Miyazaki
A One and a Two… [Yi Yi] Yang
The Opposite of Sex Roos
The Piano Campion
The Puppetmaster Hou
Requiem for a Dream Aronofsky
Reservoir Dogs Tarantino
Russian Ark Sokurov
Songs from the Second Floor Andersson
Spirited Away Miyazaki
The Story of Qiu Ju Zhang
The Sweet Hereafter Egoyan
Taipei Story Yang
A Tale of the Wind Ivens
A Taste of Cherry… Kiarostami
Three Colours Blue Kieslowski
Three Colours Red Kieslowski
Three Colours Trilogy Kieslowski
Three Colours White Kieslowski
The Time to Live and the Time to Die Hou
Vive l’Amour Tsai
The Wind Will Carry Us Kiarostami
Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown Almodóvar
Yellow Earth Chen
While I doubt that a contempory film or filmmaker will burst into the top 10, I do think that some of the above will get broader support and that you’ll seen a certain amount of even newer stuff get the odd vote here and there. Full-fledged critical reputations take a very long time to develop, and also, I think that the more develop a canon becomes, the longer it takes for new works to be accepted into it.
“it’s all about the academic rules of the game, neither variety nor equality.”
The mathematical processes involved in computing a Top 10 pretty much by definition rule out variety. But if you take the time to read through the entirety of voted films, it’s hard academically monological. Stuart Gordon, for example, voted for a Marx Brothers film, King Kong, 2001, a William Castle film, and a porno. So . . .
Anyone knows when is the poll coming out this year ?
10 years ago it debuted late Summer (July/August)
Thanks. I hope they’ll manage to bring in the best living directors / critics. The selection of voting directors for the 2002 edition was pretty mediocre imo. The critics bunch was OK-ish.
I wonder how much the internet community will play a role in this one. Like will the invite the dudes from… say, Reverse Shot, to vote? Or will it only be pro/print-journos
or the dudes from Mubi :D