How the directors and critics voted

Jim McBride

Top Ten

  1. Red River (Hawks)
  2. The Leopard (Visconti)
  3. Citizen Kane (Welles)
  4. La Grande Illusion (Renoir)
  5. À bout de souffle (Godard)
  6. Madame de... (Ophuls)
  7. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (Ford)
  8. Pickpocket (Bresson)
  9. The Lady Eve (P. Sturges)
  10. The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Powell, Pressburger)


I struggled to get my list down to fewer than 30 films. The first five were easy, or obvious, at least to me. But then there were 25 others, all masterpieces, of pretty much equal merit. So I finally decided my next five would be films I'd never seen on your lists before, just for the sake of casting the net wider. I noticed that your 1982 list had a top 15, so I'm including an additional five, just in case: Sunrise (Murnau), The Godfather Part II (Coppola), Singin' in the Rain (Kelly, Donen), Out of the Past (Tourneur), Some Came Running (Minnelli). And even then I wasn't able to include some of my favourite directors: Antonioni, Hitchcock, Lang, Kurosawa, Mizoguchi, Fellini, Keaton, Wilder, Reed, Huston, Altman, Cassavetes, Scorsese...

Last Updated: 03 Aug 2011