The Greatest Films of All Time

Almost all available films in English or with English subtitles from the early years of inception of cinema in this list have been diligently reviewed. Since the originality criteria is very important and could affect the other criteria of technicality, impact and survival, this review has been so far until the year 2002. The following films that have been on some greatest films lists or have been ranked high or awarded by different organizations, have been particularly more carefully watched and reviewed. 

In evaluation and recognition of the great and specifically the greatest films, beyond the factors of originality, technicality, impact factor and survival, the overall and instant impression of a film has been greatly considered. This impression that instantly in the first few minutes of the film befalls on the viewer, is what could move a film up the ladder of time and originality to the top of this list here. This impression factor also could include a film that’s not original in singularity, but original and novel in the application of previous original techniques.

The story content of the film does  not bear any importance on this site in recognition and ranking the great films as it is customary in other awards and ranking recognitions. Also any adaptation from other sources such as novels or plays to the film takes off the originality of the film, unless such adaptation has become an original of its own. This list of greatest films of all time, unlike many other such lists is not limited to a certain number, e.g. 100, so it could be less or more and it is also ongoing, though the newer films have less chance or such recognition due to the high chance of lack of originality.     

Lastly cinema as a common art medium unlike other arts, but like music cannot be “an art for art”, but “art for all”. This means that cinema as the only art medium, while being complex and applying other art media for enrichment, it has to be for everyone, entertaining and enlightening all. A great film could please the viewers of all kinds, from the ordinary minds to the most intellectual and critical ones.

The films in blue colour have been great, the films in green colour the greater, and the film in red colour have been the greatest films of all time in our list:

1906:The story of Kelly Craig (Charles Tait) (Australia)

1911:L’inferno (Francesco Bertolini) (France) /                                                Defence of Sevastopol (A.Khanzonov/V.Goncharov) (Russia)

1912:Cleopatra (C.Gaskil) (USA) / Robin Hood (E.Arnaud/H.Blache) (USA)

1913:Ouo Vadis (Enrico Guazzoni) (Italy) /L’enfent de Paris (Leonce Perret) (France) 

1914:Cinderella (J,Kirkwood Sr.)(USA)/The Mysterious X (B.Christensen) (Denmark)

1915:The Birth of a Nation (D.W.Griffith) (USA)/The Golem (P.Wegener/H.Galeen) (Germany) /Alice in the Wonderland (W.W.Young) (USA)/The Italian (R.Barker) (USA) 

1916:Intolerance (D.W.Griffith) (USA)/20,000 Leagues under the sea (S.Paton) (USA) /Sherlock Holmes (A.Berthelet) (USA)/The end of the world (A.Blom) (Denmark)

1918:A trip to Mars (Holger-Madsen) (Denmark)

1919:Harariki (F.Lang) (Germany)

1920:The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (R. Wiene) (Germany)/Erotikon (M.Stiller) (Sweden)

1921:The Kid (Chaplin) (USA)

1922:Nanook of the North (R.J. Flahery) (USA)/Nosferatu (F.W.Murnau) (Germany)/Othello (D.Buchowetzki) (Germany)

1923:The Ten Commandments (C.B.DeMille) (USA)

1924:Greed (E.v. Stroheim) (USA) /America (W.D.Griffith) (USA)

1925:The Battleship Potemkin (Eisentein)  (USSR)/The Gold Rush (Chaplin) (USA)/Strike (Eisenstein) (USSR) /Orochi (B.Futagawa) (Japan)

1926:The General (B.Keaton) (USA) /Nana (J.Renoir) (France)

1927:Metropolis (Fritz Lang) (Germany)/Wings (W. Wellman) (USA)  Sunrise: A song of two humans (R.Longford) (USA)/The Jazz singer (A.Crosland) (USA)/Berlin: Symphony of a great city (W.Ruttmann) (Germany) /October (Ten days that shook the World) (Esienstein) (USSR)/The end of Petersburg (V.Pudovkin/M.Doller) (USSR)

1928:The Crowd (K.Vidor) (USA)/The passion of Joan of arc (C.T. Dreyer) (France)/The last command (J.v. Sternberg) (USA)/The circus (Chaplin) (USA)

1929:Man with a movie camera (D.Vertov) (Russia)/Un Chien Andalou (An Andalusian Dog) (L.Bunuel) (Spain)/Pandora’s box (G.W.Pabst) (Germany) /The Broadway melody (H.Beaumont) (USA)/Tokyo March (Mizoguchi) (Japan)

1930:All quiet on the western front (L.Milestone) (USA)/Earth (A. Dovezhneko) (USSR)/L’age d’or (Luis Bunuel) (Spain)/The blue angel (E.Dmytryk) (Germany)/A’ propos de Nice (J.Vigo) (France)

1931:Dracula (T.Browning)(USA)/City lights (Chaplin) (USA)                  Grand Hotel (E.Goulding) (USA) /M (F.Lang) (Germany)                              Cimarron (W.Ruggles) (USA)/Frankenstein (J.Whale) (USA)

1932:Cavalcade (F.Lloyd) (USA)/A farewell to arms (F. Borzage) (USA)/Trouble in paradise (E.Lubitsch) (USA)/Freaks (T.Browning) (USA)/Boudu saved from drowning (J.Renoir) (France)/Scarface (H.Hawks) (USA)/L’Atlantide (G.W.Pabst) (Germany/France)

1933:Baby face (A.Green) (USA)/King Kong (M.Cooper/ E.Schoedsack) (USA) /Duck soup (L.McCarey) (USA)/42nd street (L.Bacon/B.Berkeley) (USA)/Zero for conduct (J.Vigo) (France)/Don Quixote (G.W.Pabst) (France/England))/Land without bread (L.Bunuel) (Spain)/The Invisible Man (J.Whale) (USA)

1934:It’s a gift (N.Mcleod) (USA)/Three songs about Lenin (D.Vertov) (USSR)

1935:The 39 steps (Hitchcock) (USA)/Triumph of the will (L.Rienfenstahl) (Germany)/The informer (J.Ford) (USA)/The Bride of Frankenstein (J.Whale) (USA)/A night at the opera (S.Wood) (USA)/Top hat (M.Sandrich) (USA)

1936:Modern times (Chaplin) (USA)/The great Ziegfeld (R.Z.Leonard) (USA)/Camille (G.Cukor) (USA)/The crime of Monsieur Lange (J.Renoir) (Franace)/Swing time (G.Stevens) (USA)/Night mail (H.Smith) (USA)

1937: La Grand illusion (J.Renoir) (France) /Pepe le Moko (J.Duvivier) (France) /Snow white and the seven dwarfs (USA)(W.Disney/D.Hand/W.Jackson/L.Morey/P.Pearce/B.Sharpsteen) Humanity and paper balloons (S.Yamanaka) (Japan)/The awful truth (L.McCarey) (USA)

1938:Alexander Nevsky (Eisenstein) (Russia)/The lady vanishes (Hitchcock) (USA)/Pygmalion (A.Asquith/L.Howard) (USA)/You can’t take it with you (F.Capra) (USA)/Olympia (L.Reifenestahl) (Germany)/Jezebel (W.Wyler) (USA)/The Adventures of Robin Hood (M.Curtiz) (USA)

1939:Le jour se leve (M.Carne) (France)/The rules of the game (J.Renoir) (France) /The wizard of Oz (V.Fleming) (USA)/Gone with the wind (V.Fleming) (USA)/Stagecoach (J.Ford) (USA)/Ninotchka (E.Lubitsch) (USA)/Wuthering heights (W.Wyler) (USA)

1940:Fantasia (S.Armstrong/J.Algar…) (USA)/The great dictator (Chaplin) (USA)/The grapes of wrath (J.Ford) (USA)/Rebecca (Hitchcock) (USA)/Pinocchio (W.Disney/B.Sharpsteen…) (USA)            The Philadelphia Story (G.Cukor) (USA)

1941:Citizen Kane (O.Welles) (USA)/The Maltese Falcon (J.Huston) (USA)/How green was my valley (J.Ford) (USA)/Sullivan’s Travels (P.Sturges) (USA)/The Lady Eve (P.Sturges) (USA)

1942:Casablanca (M.Curtiz) (USA)/The magnificent Ambersons (O.Welles) (USA)/Mrs. Miniver (W.Wyler) (USA)/Listen to Britain (H.Jennings) (England)

1943:The life and death of colonel Blimp (M.Powell) (England)              Titanic (H.Selpin) (Germany)/Shadow of a Doubt (Hitchcock) (USA)

1944:Going my way (L.McCarey) (USA)/Double indemnity (B.Wilder) (USA)/Gaslight (G.Cukor) (USA)/Meet Me in St. Louis (V.Minnelli) (USA)/Laura (O.Preminger) (USA) 

1945:Brief encounter (D.Lean) (USA)/The lost weekend (B.Wilder) (USA)/Spellbound (Hitchcock) (USA)/Children of paradise (M.Carne) (France)/Detour (E.Ulmer) (USA)/Rome, Open City (R.Rossellini) (Italy)/The turning point (Fridrikh Ermler) (Russia)/A diary for Timothy (H.Jennings) (England)

1946:The best years of our lives (W.Wyler) (USA)/It’s a wonderful life (F.Capra) (USA)/Notorious (Hichcock) (USA)/My darling Celmentine (J.Ford) (US)/Beauty and the beast (J.Cocteau) (France)    The Killers (R.Siodmak) (USA)

1947:Gentleman’s agreement (E.Kazan) (USA)/Out of the past (J.Tourneur) (England)

1948:The Fallen idol (C.Reed) (England)/Bicycle thieves (De Sica) (Italy)/The treasure of Sierra Madre (J.Huston) (USA)/Hamlet (L.Olivier) (England)/Monsieur Vincent (M.Cloche) (France)/Letter from an unknown woman (M.Ophuls) (USA)/Red River (H.Hawks) (USA)/The red shoes (M.Powell) (England)/Macbeth (O.Welles) (USA)/Germany year zero (R.Rossellini) (Italy)/La Terra Trema (Luchino Visconti) (Italy)/Le sang des bêtes (G.Franj) (France)/ Drunken Angel (Kurosawa) (Japan)

1949:Kind hearts and coronets (R.Hamer) (England)/The Third Man (C.Reed) (England)/All the king’s men (R.Rossen) (USA)/Late spring (Y.Ozu) (Japan)

1950:Rashomon (Kurosawa) (Japan)/All about Eve (J.Mankiewicz) (USA)/Sunset Blvd. (B.Wilder) (USA)/The walls of Malapaga (R.Clement) (France)/In a lonely place (N.Ray) (USA)/Orphee (J.Cocteau) (France)/Los Olvidados (L.Bunuel) (Spain)

1951:Miss Julie (Alf Sjoberg) (Sweden)/A streetcar named Desire (E. Kazan) (USA)/An American in Paris (V. Minnelli) (USA)/The African Queen (J. Huston) (USA)/Diary of a country priest (R.Bresson) (France)/The River (J.Renoir) (France)/Othello (O.Welles) (USA)/The day the Earth stood still (Robert Wise) (USA)

1952:Forbidden games (R. Clement) (France)/Ikiru (Kurosawa) (Japan)/The importance of being earnest (A. Asquith) (England)          Umberto D. (De Sica) (Italy)/The white sheik (Fellini) (Italy)/High noon (Fred Zinnemann) (USA)/The quiet man (J.Ford) (USA)/Limelight (Chaplin) (USA)/Singin’ in the rain(G.Kelly/S.Donen) (USA)

1953:M.Hulot’s holiday (J.Tati) (France)/Ugetsu (K.Mizoguchi) (Japan)/The wages of fear (H.G. Clouzot) (France/Italy)/Tokyo story (Y.Ozu) (Japan)/The war of the worlds (B.Haskin) (USA)/Julius Caesar (J.Mankiewicz) (USA)/Shane (G.Stevens) (USA)/From here to eternity (F.Zinnemann) (USA)/Roman holiday (W.Wyler) (USA)/The robe (H.Coster) (USA)/The earrings of Madame De..(M.Ophuls) (France)

1954:Seven Samurai (Kurosawa) (Japan)/La Strada (Fellini) (Italy) /     On the waterfront (Kazan) (USA)/Gate of hell (T.Kinugasa) (Japan)    Journey to Italy (Rossellini) (Italy)/Rear window (Hitchcock) (USA)    Godzilla (I.Honda) (Japan)/Twenty-four eyes (K.Kinoshita) (Japan)    Johnny guitar (N.Ray) (USA)/Sansho the Bailiff (Mizoguchi) (Japan)  A star is born (G.Cukor) (USA)/Sabrina (B.Wilder) (USA)/Seven brides for seven brothers (S.Donen) (USA) 

1955:Richard III (L.Olivier) (England)/Summertime (D.Lean) (USA) /   Apu Trilogy (Pather Panchali) (Satyajit Ray) (India)/Oklahoma (F.Zinnemann) (USA)/Rebel without a cause (Kazan) (USA)/Samurai, the legend of Musashi (H.Inagaki) (Japan)/Smiles of a summer night (I.Bergman) (Sweden)/The night of the hunter (C.Laughton) (USA)/Les diaboliques (H.G.Clouzot) (France)/Marty (D.Mann) (USA)/East of Eden (Kazan) (USA)/To catch a thief (Hitchcock) (USA)

1956:The Searchers (J.Ford) (USA)/The ten commandments (C.B.DeMille) (USA)/Giant (G.Stevens) (USA)/The king and I (W.Lang) (USA)/The silent world (J.Cousteau) (France)/Invasion of the body snatchers (D.Siegel) (USA)/A Man Escaped (Bresson) (France)/The Burmese Harp (K.Ichikawa) (Japan)/Written on the wind (D.Sirk) (USA)/And God created woman (R.Vadim) (France)/Night and fog (A.Resnais) (France)/Apu trilogy (Aparajito) (S.Ray) (India)/Moby Dick (J.Huston) (USA)/The Red Balloon (Albert Lamorisse) (France) 

1957: The seventh seal (Bergman) (Sweden)/Wild strawberries (Bergman) (Sweden)/12 angry men (S.Lumet) (USA)/Nights of Cabiria (Fellini) (Italy)/Sweet smell of success (A.Mackendrick) (USA) Peyton place (M.Robson) (USA)/Paths of glory (Kubrick) (USA)/The cranes are flying (M.Kalatazov) (Russia)/Throne of blood (Kurosawa) (Japan)/The bridge on the river Kwai (D.Lean) (USA)

1958:Ashes and diamonds (A.Wajda) (Poland)/Ivan the terrible, part II (Eisenstein) (Russia)/Cat on a hot tin roof (R.Brooks) (USA)        Mon Oncle (J.Tati) (France)/Vertigo (Hitchcock) (USA)/Touch of evil (O.Welles) (USA)/The hidden fortress (Kurosawa) (Japan)

1959:Ballad of a soldier (G.Chukhrai) (Russia)/Fires on the plain (K.Ichikawa) (Japan)/Floating weeds (Y.Ozu) (Japan)/The 400 blows (Trauffaut) (France)/Some like it hot (B.Wilder) (USA)/Ben Hur (W.Wyler) (USA)/Anatomy of a murder (O.Preminger) (USA)                  Black Orpheus (O.Negro) (France)/North by Northwest (Hitchcock) USA)/Hiroshima, mon amour (A.Resnais) (France)/Pickpocket (Bresson) (France)/Il generale Della Rovere (Rossellini) (Italy)/The human condition (M.Kobayashi) (Japan)/Moi, un noir (J. Rouch) (France)/Rio Bravo (H.Hawks) (USA)/The Great War (M.Monicelli) (Italy/France)/A summer place (D. Daves) (USA)/Apu Trilogy (The World of Apu) (S.Ray) (India)/The Unsent letter (M.Kalatazov) (USSR)

1960:L’Avventura (Antonioni) (Italy)/The virgin spring (Bergman) (Sweden)/Breathless (Godard) (France)/La Dolce Vita (Fellini) (Italy)  Psycho (Hitchcock) (USA)/The apartment (B.Wilder) (USA)/Two women (De Sica) (Italy)/Eyes without a face (G.Franju) (France) / Rocco and his brothers (L.Visconti) (Italy)/When a woman ascends the stairs (M.Naruse) (Japan)/Purple Noon (R.Clement) (France)/The magnificent seven (J.Sturges) (USA)/Peeping Tom (M.Powell) (England)/Spartacus (Kubrick) (USA)/Cimarron (A.Mann) (USA)/ Ocean’s Eleven (L.Milestone) (USA)/The World of Suzie Wong (R.Quine) (England/USA)/Elmer Gantry (R.Brooks) (USA)/Shoot the piano player (Truffaut) (France)

1961:Il Posto (E.Olmi) (Italy)/Viridiana (Bunuel) (Spain)                            West side story (R.Wise) (USA)/Through a glass darkly (Bergman) (Sweden)/The long absence (H.Colpi) (France)/Yojimbo (Kurosawa) (Japan)/Splendor in the grass (Kazan) (USA)/La Notte (Antonioni) (Italy)/Breakfast at Tiffany’s (B.Edwards) (USA)/One, two, three (B.Wilder) (USA)/The Hustler (R.Rossen) (USA)/Barabbas (Richard Fleischer) (Italy)

1962:Jules and Jim (Trauffaut) (France)/Knife in the water (Polanski) (Poland)/Lawrence of Arabia (D.Lean) (USA)/To kill a mockingbird (R.Mulligan) (USA)/Sundays and Cybele (S.Bourguignon) (France)/Keeper of promises (A.Duarte) (Brazil)/La Jetee (C.Marker) (France)/The Manchurian candidate (J.Frankenheimer) (USA)Birdman of Alcatraz (J.Frankenheimer) (USA)/Cape fear (J.L.Thompson) (USA)/Lolita (Kubrick) (USA)/Sweet bird of youth (R.Brooks) (USA)/Ivan’s childhood (A.Tarkovsky) (Russia)/L’Eclisse (Antonioni) (Italy)/Salvatore Giuliano (F.Rosi) (Italy)/Harakiri (Kobayashi) (Japan)/Cleo from 5 to 7 (A.Varda) (France/Italy)/The trial (O. Welles) (USA)/Sanjuro (Kurosawa) (Japan)/Two weeks in another town (V.Minnelli) (USA)/Phaedra (J.Dassin) (France)/My life to live (Godard) (France)

1963:81/2 (Fellini) (Italy)/Eat (A.Warhol) (USA)/America America (Kazan) (USA)/How the west was won (J.Ford/ H.Hathaway/ G.Marshall) (USA)/Lilies of the field (R.Nelson) (USA)/The Leopard (Visconti) (Italy)/Charade (S.Donen) (USA)/The Birds (Hitchcock) (USA)/Contempt (Le Mepris) (Godard) (France)/The house is black (F.Farokhzad) (Iran)/The Pink Panther (B.Edwards) (USA)/The Silence (Bergman) (Sweden)/Shock corridor (S.Fuller) (USA)/Winter Light (Bergman) (Sweden)/Jason and Argonauts (J.Chaffey) (USA)/The Great Escape (J.Sturges) (USA)/It’s a mad, mad, mad world (S.Kramer) (USA)/Cleopatra (J.Mankiewicz) (USA)/Lord of the flies (P.Brook) (USA)/The Servant (J.Losey) (Italy)/The fire within (L.Malle) (France)/Pour la suite du monde (Pierre Perrault) (Canada)/Le petit soldat (Godard) (France)/The Big City (S.J.Ray) (India)

1964:Dr.Strangelove or: How I learned to stop worrying and love the bomb (Kubrick) (USA)/For a fistful of dollars (S.Leone) (Italy)          Becket (P.Glenville) (England/USA)/Yesterday, today, tomorrow (De Sica) (Italy)/The umbrellas of Cherbourg (J.Demy) (France)/Band a part (Band or outsiders) (Godard) (France)/A Hard day’s night (R.Lester) (England)/The naked kiss (S.Fuller) (USA)/Hamlet (S.Kozintsev) (Russia)/Marriage Italian style (De Sica) (Italy)  The Gospel according to St.Matthew (Pasolini) (Italy)/Scorpio rising (K.Anger) (USA)/Nobody waved goodbye (Don Owen) (Canada)/Mary Poppins (R.Stevenson) (USA)/Goldfinger (G.Hamilton) (USA)/I am Cuba (Kalataov) (USSR)/The fall of the Roman Empire (A.Mann) (USA)/Diamonds of the Night (Jan Němec) (Czechoslovakia)/Before the Revolution (Bertolucci) (Italy)/Black Peter (M.Forman) (Czechoslovakia)/My Fair Lady (G.Cukor) (USA)/Red Desert (Antonioni) (Italy)/The night of the Iguana (J.Huston) (USA)/Kwaidan (Kobayashi) (Japan)/Gate of flesh (S.Suzuki) (Japan)

1965:Fists in the pocket (M.Bellocchio) (Italy)/Loves of a blonde (M.Forman) (Czechoslovakia)/Dr.Zhivago (D.Lean) (USA)/The sound of music (R.Wise) (USA)/The shop on Main street (Jan Kadar/Elmar Klos) (Czechoslovakia)/The knack…and how to get it (Richard Lester) (England)/Pierrot le fou (Godard) (France)/Cat Ballou (Elliot Silverstein) (USA)/Repulsion (Polanski) (England)/Chimes at midnight (O. Welles) (USA)/Red beard (Kurosawa) (Japan) Sandra of a Thousand Delights (Visconti) (Italy)/Alphaville (Godard) (France)

1966:The battle of Algiers (Gilo Pontecorvo) (Italy/Algeria)/                     The good, the bad and the ugly (S.Leone) (Italy)/A man for all seasons (Fred Zinnemann) (England)/The sand pebbles (R.Wise) (USA)/Who’s afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Mike Nichols) (USA)/A man and a woman (Claude Lelouch) (France)/Au hazard Balthazar (Bresson) (France/Sweden)/Persona (Bergman) (Sweden)/Andrei Rublev (A.Tarkovsky) (USSR)/Blow-up (Antonioni) (Italy)/Farenheit 451 (Trauffaut) (France)/Tokyo drifter (S.Suzuki) (Japan)/Black girl (O.Sembene) (France/Senegal)/War and Peace (King Vidor) (USA)/Alfie (Lewis Gilbert) (USA)/The Chase (Arthur Penn) (USA)/Torn Curtain (Hitchcock) (USA)/Is Paris burning? (Rene Clement) (France)

1967:Bonnie and Clyde (Arthur Penn) (USA)/The Graduate (Mike Nichols) (USA)/In the heat of the night (Norman Jewison) (USA)            Closely watched trains (Jiri Menzel) (Czechoslovakia)/Playtime (Jacques Tati) (France)/The producers (Mel Brooks) (USA)/Mouchette (Bresson) (France)/The dirty dozen (Robert Aldrich) (USA/England)/The taming of the shrew (Franco Zeffirelli) (USA)/Le Samurai (jean-Pierre Melville) (France)/Belle de Jour (Luis Bunuel) (France/Italy)/Memories of underdevelopment (Tomas Gutieerz Alea) (Cuba)/Wavelength (Michael Snow) (Canada/USA)       Don’t look back (D.A. Pennebaker) (USA)/Titicut follies (Fredrick Wiseman) (USA)/Portrait of Jason (Shirley Clarke) (USA)/Cool Hand Luke (Stuart Rosenberg) (USA)/Guess who’s coming to dinner (Stanley Cramer) (USA)/War and peace (Segei Bondarchuk) (Russia)/Doctor Faustus (Richard Burton/Nevil Coghill) (England)   Barefoot in the park (Gene Saks) (USA)/Wait until dark (Terence Young) (USA)/In cold blood (Richard Brooks) (USA)/Camelot (Joshua Logan) (USA)/A countess from Hong Kong (Chaplin) (USA)/Oedipus Rex (Pasolini) (Italy)/Reflection in a golden eye (John Huston) (USA)

1968:Planet of the Apes (Franklin Schaffner) (USA)/2001: A space odyssey (Kubrick) (USA)/Night of the living dead (George Romero) (USA)/Oliver (Carol Reed) (England)/Romeo and Juliet (Franco Zeffirelli) Italy/England)/The Lion in the winter (Anthony Harey) (England/USA)/Once upon a time in the west (S.Leone) (Italy)                Faces (John Cassavetes) (USA)/Rosemary’s baby (R.Polanski) (USA)    The swimmer (Frank Oerry/Sydney Polack) (USA)/Two comrades were serving (Yevgeny Karelov) (Russia)/Kuroneko (The Black Cat) (Kaneto Shindo) (Japan)/Walden (Diaries, notes and sketches) (Jonas Mekas) (USA)/Bullitt (Peter Yates) (USA)/Shame (Ingmar Bergman) (Sweden)/Hour of the Wolf (Bergman) (Sweden)/Funny Girl (William Wyler) (USA)/Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (Ken Hughes) (USA/England)/The Party (Blake Edwards) (USA)/Isadora (Karek Reisz) (England/France)/Charly (Ralph Nelson) (USA) Stolen Kisses (Truffaut) (France)/Rachel, Rachel (Paul Newman) (USA)/The Boston Strangler (Richard Fleischer)/The Shoes of the Fisherman (Michael Anderson) (USA)/If…. (Lindsay Anderson) (England)

 1969:Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (George Roy Hill) (USA)  Midnight cowboy (John Schlesinger) (USA)/Z(Costa-Gavras) (Algeria/France)/Wild bunch (Sam Pekinpah) (USA)/They shoot horses, don’t they? (Sydney Pollack) (USA) /Army of shadows (Jean-Pierre Melville) (France) /The sorrow and the pity (Marcel Ophuls) (France)/My night at Maud’s (Eric Rohmer) (France)/Easy Rider (Dennis Hopper) (USA)/The Red Tent (Mikhail Kaltozov) (USSR)/ Salesman (Albert & David Maysles/Charlotte Zwerin) (USA/Fellini’s Satyricon (Fellini) (Italy)/The passion of Anna (Bergman (Sweden)/Topaz (Hitchcock) (USA)/The Cow (Dariush Mehrjui) (Iran)

1970:Patton (Frankiln Schaffner) (USA)/Investigation of a citizen above suspicion (Elio Petri) (Italy)/Tristana (Luis Bunuel) (Spain/France/Italy)/The Conformist (Bernardo Bertolucci) (Italy/France)/Dodes’ka-den (Kurosawa) (Japan)/Love Story (Arthur Hiller) (USA)/MASH (Robert Altman) (USA)/The Wild Child (Truffaut) (France)/Little Big Man (Arthur Penn) (USA)/Le Boucher (Claude Chabrol) (France/Italy)/Goin’ Down the Road (Don Shebib) (Canada)/The Artistocats (Wolfgang Reitherman) (USA)/Ryan’s Daughter (David Lean) (England)/Five Easy Pieces (Bob Rafelson) (USA)/Valerie and her week of wonders (Jaromil Jires) (Csechoslovakia) /Le cercle rouge (Jean-Pierre Melville) (France)/Claire’s Knee (Eric Rohmer) (France)/The twelve chairs (Mel Brooks) (USA)/Airport (George Seaton) (USA)  The Kremlin letter (John Huston) (USA)/The Garden of the Finzi-Continis (de Sica) (Italy)/The Flight (Aleksandr Alov) (USSR)

1971:A Clockwork orange (Kubrick) (England/USA)/The French connection (William Friedkin) (USA)/Fiddler on the roof (Norman Jewison) (USA)/Straw dogs (Sam Peckinpah) (England/USA)/The go-between (Joseph Losey) (England/USA)/Death in Venice (Visconti) (Italy/France)/King Lear (Grigori Kozintsev) (USSR)/Wake in Fright (Ted Kotcheff) (Australia)/Last Picture Show (Peter Bogdanovich) (USA)/Ragbar (Downpour) (Bahram Bayzai) (Iran)/Dirty Harry (Don Siegel) (USA)/Klute (Alan J. Pakula) (USA)/Mon Onlce Antoine (Claude Jutra) (Canada)/McCabe & Mrs. Miller (Robert Altman) (USA)/Macbeth (Polanski) (USA/England)/A touch of Zen (King Hu) (China) Trafic (Jaque Tati) (France)/The Panic in the needle park (Jerry Schatzberg) (USA)/Johnny got his gun (Dalton Trumbo) (USA)/Land of Silence and darkness (Werner Herzog) (Germany)/Nicholas and Alexandra (Franklin Schaftner) (England)/Bananas (Woody Allen) (USA)/The working class goes to heaven (Eli Petri) (Italy)/Ragbar (Downpour) (Bahram Bayzai) (Iran)

1972:Fritz the cat (Ralph Bakshi) (USA)/The Godfather (F.Coppola) (USA)/The discreet charm of the bourgeoisie (Bunuel) (France /Spain/Italy)/Aguirre:The wrath of God (Werner Herzog) (West Germany)/Junior Bonner (Peckinpah) (USA)/Cabaret (Bobe Fosse) (USA)/Quiz Show (Robert Redford) (USA)/Last Tango in Paris (Bertolucci) (Italy/France)/Man of La Mancha (Arthur Hiller) (USA/Italy)/The True Nature of Bernadette (Gilles Carle) (Canada)/Roma (Fellini) (Italy)/The bitter tear of Petra von Kant (Fassbinder) (W.Germany)/Cries and Whispers (Bergman) (Sweden)/  Jeremiah Johnson (Sydney Pollack) (USA)/Deliverance (John Boorman) (USA)/Slaughterhouse-Five (George Roy Hill) (USA)/Frenzy (Hitchcock) (USA)/Everything you always wanted to know about sex, but were afraid to ask (Woody Allen) (USA)/State of Siege (C.Gavras) (France)

1973:The spirit of the beehive (Victor Erice) (Spain)/The Sting (George Roy Hill) (USA)/Day for night (Francois Truffaut) (France)/Badlands (Terrence Malick) (USA)/Don’t look now (Nicolas Roeg) (England/Italy)/The exorcist (William Friedkin) (USA)/Papillion (Frankiln Schaffner) ((USA/France)/We all loved each other so much (Etoore Scola) (Italy)/Amarcord (Fellini) (Italy)/American Graffiti (George Lucas) (USA)/Mean Streets (Scorsese) (USA)/Scenes from a Marriage (Bergman) (Sweden)/Paper Moon (Bogdanovich) (USA)/The Experience (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/Save the Tiger (John Avlidsen) (USA)/Serpico (Sydney Lumet) (USA)/Immoral Tales (Walerian Borowczyk) (France)/Harmonica (Sazdahani) (Amir Naderi) (Iran)/Sleeper (Woody Allen) (USA)/The way we were (Sydney Pollack) (USA)/A simple event (Sohrab Shahid-Saless) (Iran)

1974:Chinatown (Polanski) (USA)/The conversation (Francis Ford Coppola) (USA)/Scent of a woman (Dino Risi) (Italy)/Blazing Saddles (Mel Brooks) (USA)/The Enigma of Kasper Hauser (Werner Herzog) (W.Germany)/Young Frankestein (Mel Brooks) (USA)/Ali: Fear eats the soul (Rainer Werner Fassbinder) (W.Germany)/The Great Gatsby (Jack Clayton) (USA)/Celine and Julie go boating (Jacques Rivette) (France)/The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (Joseph Sargent) (USA)/The Towering Inferno (John Guillermin) (USA)/The Godfather Part II (F.Coppola) (USA)/The Yakuza (S.Pollack) (USA/Japan)/The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Tobe Hooper) (USA)/The Traveller (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/Les Ordres (Michel Brault) (Canada)/Murder on the Orient Express (S.Lumet) (USA/England)/Alice doesn’t live here anymore (Scorsese) (USA)/The Night Porter (Liliana Cavani) (Italy/USA)/Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz (Ted Kotcheff) (Canada)/The Phantom of Liberty (Bunuel) (France/Italy)/Arabian Nights (Pasolini) (Italy)/Bring me the head of Alfredo Garcia (Peckinpah) (USA)

1975:Monty Python and the Holy Grail (Terry Gilliam/Terry Jones) (England)/Jaws (Spielberg) (USA)/One flew over the Cuckoo’s nest (Milos Forman) (USA)/Barry Lyndon (Kubrick) (England/USA)/Dog day afternoon (Sidney Lumet) (USA)/Dersu Uzala (Kurosawa) (Japan/USSR)/The story of Adele H (Truffaut) (France)/Mirror (Andrei Tarkovski) (USSR)/The lost honour of Katharina Blum (Volker Schlondorff/Margarethe von Trotta) (W.Germany)/Jeanne Dileman, 23 quai du commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (Chantal Akerman) (Belgium/France)/Still Life (Sohrab Shahid-Saless) (Iran)/Grey gardens (Albert Maysles/David Maysles) (USA)/The battle of Chile Part I (Patricio Guzman) (Chile)    Nashville (R.Altman) (USA)/The Magic Flute (Bergman) (Sweden)/Requiem (Amir Naderi) (Iran)/Dayereh Mina (The Cycle) (Dariush Mehrjui)/The Messiah (Rossellini)(Italy/France)/ Shampoo (W. Beatty) (USA)    The Passenger (Antonioni) (Italy/Spain/France)/The man who would be King (J. Huston)(USA/England)

1976:Taxi driver (Scorsese) (USA)/Rocky (John Avildsen) (USA)/All the President’s Men (Alan J.Pakula) (USA)/Network (S.Lumet) (USA)/Black and white in color (Jean Jacques Annaud) (France)/ Seven beauties (Lina Wertmuller) (Italy)/Harlan county USA (Barbara Kopple) (USA)/In the realm of the senses (Nagisa Oshima) (Japan)/The Tenant (Polanski) (France)/The Omen (Richard Donner) (England/USA)/A Wedding Suit (Abbas Kiarostami)/Marathon Man (John Schlesinger) (USA)/1900 (Bertolucci) (Italy)/Fellini’s Casanova (Italy)

1977:Star Wars: Episode IV- A new hope (George Lucas) (USA)/Padre Pardone (Paolo/Vittorio Taviani) (Italy)/Annie Hall (W.Allen) (USA)/The Wishing Tree (Tengiz Abuladze) (Georgia)/Julia (Fred Zinnemann) (USA)/Office romance (Eldar Ryazanov) (Russia)/Report (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/Madame Rosa (Moshe Mirzahi) (France)/Stroszek (Werner Herzog) Germany)/The obscure object of desire (Bunuel) (France/Spain)/House (Nobuhiko Obayashi) (Japan)/Cross of iron (Peckinpah) (USA)/Saturday night fever (John Badham) (USA)/Close encounters of the third kind (Steven Spielberg) (USA)/High Anxiety (Mel Brooks) (USA)/New York, New York (Scorsese) (USA)

1978:The Deer Hunter (Michael Cimino) (USA)/Get out your handkerchiefs (Bertrand Blier) (France)/Moliere (Ariane Mnouchkine) (France)/Grease (Randal Kleiser) (USA)/Autumn Sonata (Bergman) (Sweden/Germany)/The tree of wooden clogs (Ermanno Olmi) (Italy)/Superman (Richard Donner) (USA)/The Lord of the Rings (Raplh Bakhshi)(USA/England)/Heaven can wait (Warren Beatty) (USA)/Desiderium (Sooteh-Delan) (Iran)/The Inglorious Bastards (Enzo Castellari) (Italy)/Les Miserables (Glen Jordan) (England)/The Boys from Brazil (Franklin Schaffner) (USA)/Coming Home (Hal Ashby) (USA)

1979:Alien (Ridley Scott) (USA)/Apocalypse now (Coppola) (USA)/Kramer vs. Kramer (Robert Benton) (USA)/The tin drum (Volker Schlondroff) (Germany/Yugoslavia/Poland/France)/Stalker (Tarkovsky) (Russia)/And justice for all (Norman Jewison) (USA)/The Marriage of Maria Braun (Rainer Werner Fassbinder) (Germany)/Laura (David Hamilton) (France)/Manhattan (W.Allen) (USA)/Monty Python’s Life of Brian (Terry Jones)(England)/Caligula (Tinto Brass) (USA/Italy)/All that jazz (Bob Fosse) (USA)/Being there (Hal Ashby) (USA)/First Case, Second Case (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/The Rose (Mark Rydell) (USA)/Star Trek: The Motion Picture (Robert Wise) (USA)/Tess (Roman Polanski) (France/England)/La Luna (Bertolucci) (Italy)/The China Syndrome (James Bridges) (USA)/Wise Blood (John Huston)

1980:The Shinning (Kubrick) (USA/England)/Airplane (Jim Abrahams/ David & Jerry Zucker) (USA)/Raging Bull (Scorsese) (USA)/Ordinary people (R.Redford) (USA)/Coal’s miner daughter (Michael Apted) (USA)/Moscow does not believe in tears (Vladimir Menshov) (Russia)/Kagemusha (Kurosawa) (Japan)/The last metro (Truffaut) (France)/Mon oncle d’Amerique (Alain Resnais) (France)/Atlantic City (Louis Malle) (France/Canada)/Good Riddance (Les Bons debarras (Francis mankiewicz) (Canada)/The Blues Brothers (John Landis) (USA)/American gigolo (Paul Schrader) (USA)/Health (Robert Altman) (USA)/Heaven’s Gate (Michael Cimino) (USA)/Star Wars : The Empire strikes back (Lucas) (USA)/The Elephant Man (David Lynch) (USA/ England)/Stardust Memories (W.Allen) (USA)

1981:Das Boot (Wolfgang Peterson) (Germany)/Chariots of fire (Hugh Hudson) (England)/Reds (W.Beatty) (USA)/Coup de Trochon (Bernard Tavernier) (France)/Indiana Jones: Raiders of the lost Ark (Spielberg) (USA)/Escape from New York (John Carpenter) (USA)/Mephisto (Istvan Szabo) (Hungry)/Body Heat (Lawrence Kasdan) (USA)/The postman always rings twice (Bob Rafelson) (USA)/History of the World Part I (M.Brooks) (USA)/Escape to Victory (J.Huston) (USA)/Man of iron (Andrzej Wajda) (Poland)/On Golden Pond (Mark Rydell) (USA)/The French Lieutenant’s Woman (Karel Reisz) (England)/The Bunker (George Schaefer) (USA)/Blow out (Brian De Palma) (USA)/Absence of Malice (Sydney Pollack) (USA)

1982:E.T.: The Extra-terrestrial (Spielberg) (USA)/Blade runner (Ridley Scott) (USA)/Pink Floyd: The Wall (Alan Parker/Gerald Scarfe) (England)/Gandhi (Richard Attenborough) (England/India)/Tootsie (Sydney Poolack) (USA)/Missing (Gavras) (France)/Volver a empezar: Begin the Beguine (Jose Luis Garci) (Spain)/Sophie’s choice (Alan J. Pakula) (USA)/Fitzcarraldo (Werner Herzog) (Germany)/First blood (Ted Kotcheff) (USA)/A Midsummer night sex comedy (W. Allen) (USA)/Poltergeist (Tobe Hooper) (USA)/The King of Comedy (Scorsese) (USA)/The Year of Living Dangerously (Peter Weir) (Australia)/Diner (Barry Levinson) (USA)/The Verdict (Sidney Lumet) (USA)/The World according to Garp (George Roy Hill) (USA)/Koyaanisqatsi (Godfrey Reggio) ((USA)

 1983:Terms of endearment (James Brooks) (USA)/Fanny and Alexander (Bergman) (Sweden/France/Germany)/Tender mercies (Bruce Berestford) (USA)/The Ballad of Narayama (Shoheil Imamura) (Japan)/Le Bal (Ettora Scola) (Algeria/Italy/France)/Scarface (Brian De Palma) (USA)/A Nos Amours (Maurice Pialat) (France)/Monty Python: the Meaning of Life (Terry Jones) (England)/Local Hero (Bill Forsyth) (England)/Nostalghia (Tarkovsky) (Russia)/Sans Soleil (Chris Marker) (France)/ The Grey Fox (Phillip Borsos) (Canada)/Flashdance (Adrian Lyne) (USA)/L’Argent (R. Bresson) (France)

1984:Amadeus (Milos Forman) (USA)/The killing fields (Ronlad Joffe) (England)/Dangerous moves (Richard Dembo) (France/Switzerland)/ Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders) (Germany/France)/The Terminator (James Cameron) (USA)/Once upon a time in America (Sergio Leone) (Italy)/A Nightmare on Elm Street (Wes Craven) (USA)/Ghostbusters (Ivan Reitman) (USA)/Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom (Lucas) (USA)/The Never Ending Story (Wolfgang Petersen) (Germany)/The Natural (Barry Levinson)(USA)/Nineteen-Eighty-Four (Michael Radford) (England)/Stranger than Paradise (Jim Jarmusch) (USA/Germany)/ Children of the Corn (Fritz Kiersch) (USA)/Birdy (Alan Parker) (USA)/The Cotton Club (Coppola) (USA)/Maria’s Lovers (Andrei Konchalovsky) (USA)/A Passage to India (David Lean) (England/USA)/Broadway Danny Rose (W.Allen) (USA)

1985:Brazil (Terry Gilliam) (England/USA)/Out of Africa (Sydney Pollack) (USA)/The official story (Luis Puenzo) (Argentina)/When father was away on business (Emir Kusturica) (Yugoslavia)/Shoah (Claude Lanzmann)(France)/Purple rose of Cairo (W.Allen) (USA)/Lost in America (Albert Brooks) (USA)/The Runner (Davandeh) (Amir Naderi) (Iran)/Ran (Kurosawa) (Japan/France)/Tampopo (Juzo Itami) (Japan)/My Life as a Dog (Lasse Hallstrom) (Sweden)/My Beautiful Laundrette (Stephen Frears) (England)/Back to the future (Robert Zemeckis) (USA)/Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (Paul Schrader) (USA)/After Hours (Scorsese) (USA)/The Breakfast Club (John Hughes) (USA)/Steaming (J.Losey)(England)/Witness (Peter Weir) (USA)/Death of a Salesman (Volker Schlondorff) (USA)/Plenty (Fred Schpisi) (England/USA)

1986:Platoon (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Hannah and her sisters (W.Allen) (USA)/The assault (Fons Rademakers) (Netherland)/The Decline of the American Empire (Denys Arcand) (Canada)/The Mission (Roland Joffe) (England)/The singing detective (Keith Gordon) (USA)/Blue Velvet (David Lynch) (USA)/Bashu, the little stranger (Bahram Beizaei) (Iran)/ Dust in the Wind (Hou Hsiao-hsien)(Taiwan)/Hadsworth Songs (John Akomfrah) (England)/Top Gun (Tony Scott) (USA)/Nine ½ weeks (Adrian Lyne) (USA)/Stand by Me (Rob Reiner) (USA)/Boycott (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/The Name of the Rose (Jean-Jacques Annaud) (Italy/Germany/France)/The Tenants (Dariush Mehrjui) (Iran)/The Fly (David Cronenberg) (USA)/The Color of Money (Scorsese) (USA)/ Children of a Lesser God (Randa Haines) (USA)/Heartburn (Mike Nichols) (USA)

1987:The last Emperor (Bertolucci) (Italy/England)/Babette’s Feast (Gabriel Axel) (Denmark)/Au revoir les enfents (Louis Malle) (France/Germany)/ Under the Sun of Satan (Maurice Pialat) (France)/Broadcast news (James Brooks) (USA)/Wings of desire (Wim Wenders) (Germany/France)/The Emperor’s naked army marches on (Kazuo Hara) (Japan)/Full Metal Jacket (Kubrick) (USA/England)/Dirty Dancing (Emile Adrolino) (USA)/The Untouchables (Brian De Palma) (USA)/Fatal Attraction (Adrian Lune) (USA)/Where is the Friend’s Home? (Abbas Kiarostami)(Iran)/Robocop (Paul Verhoeven) (USA)/Wall Street (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Empire of the Sun (Spielberg) (USA)/ Moonstruck (Norman Jewison) (USA)/Good Morning Vietnam (Barry Levinson) (USA)/Hope and Glory (John Boorman) (England/USA)/I’ve heard the Mermaids Singing (Patricia Rozema) (Canada)/The Peddler (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/Ironweed (Hector Babenco) (USA)/Pelle the Conqueror (Bille August) (Denmark/Sweden)/Cry Freedom (Richard Attenborough) ((England/South Africa)/Radio Days (W.Allen) (USA)/September (W.Allen) (USA)/The Cyclist (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)

1988:The Last Temptation of Christ (Scorsese) (USA)/Rain Man (Barry Levinson) (USA)/Women on the verge of a nervous breakdown (Pedro Almodovar) (Spain)/Dead ringers (David Cronenberg) (Canada/USA)/The unbearable lightness of being (Philip Kaufman) (USA)/Dekalog (Krzysztof Kieslowski) (Poland)/Frantic (Polanski) (USA/France)/Cinema Paradiso (Giuseppe Tornatore) (Italy)/The Accused (Jonathan Kaplan) (USA)/The Beast of War (Kevin Reynolds) (USA)/Dangerous Liaisons (Stephen Frears) (USA)/Akira (Katsuhiro Otomo) (Japan)/The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris) (USA)

1989:Do the right thing (Spike Lee) (USA) /Indiana Jones and the last crusade (Spielberg) (USA)/Born on the fourth of July (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Dead poets society (Peter Weir) (USA)/Driving Miss Daisy (Bruce Beresford) (USA)/My left foot (Jim Sheridan) (Ireland/England)/Tie me up! Tie me down (Almodovar) (Spain)/Sex, lies and videotapes (Steven Soderbergh) (USA)/The Killer (John Woo) (China)/The Power of Kangwon Province (Hong San-Soo) (South Korea)/Roger and me (Michael Moore) (USA)/Henry V (Kenneth Branagh) (England)/ Jesus of Montreal (Denys Arcand) (Canada)/Glory (Edward Zwick) (USA)/Casualties of War (Brian De Palma) (USA)/Lean on Me (John Avlidsen) (USA)/Crimes and Misdemeanors (W.Allen) (USA)/New York Stories (Scorsese/Coppola/W.Allen) (USA)/Fat Man and Little Boy (Roland Joffe) (USA)/Marriage of the blessed (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)

1990:Goodfellas (Scorsese) (USA)/Dances with wolves (Kevin Kostner) (USA)/Journey of hope (Xavier Koller) (Turkey/Switzerland)/Wild at heart (David Lynch) (USA)/Miller’s crossing (Joel Coen) (USA)/Europa Europa (Agnieszka Holland) (Poland/Germany/France) /Close-up (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/Cyrano de Bergerac (Jean-Paul Rappeneau) (France/Hungry)/The Witches (Nicolas Roeg) (England/USA)/The Godfather Part III (F.Coppola) (USA)/Dreams (Kurosawa) (Japan)/Nikita (Luc Besson) (France)/Pretty Woman (Garry Marshall) (USA)/Edward Scissorhands (Tim Burton) (USA)/Revenge (Tony Scott) (USA)/Ghost (Jerry Zucker) (USA)/Havana (Sydney Pollack) (USA)/Hamlet (Franco Zeffirelli) (England/USA)/Reversal of Fortune (Barbet Schroeder) (USA)/Awakenings (Penny Marshall) (USA)/Home Alone (Chris Columus) (USA)/Henry & June (Philip Kaufman) (USA)/Hamoun (Dariush Mehrjui) (Iran)

1991:The silence of the Lambs (Jonathan Demme) (USA)/Mediterraneo (Gabriele Salvatores) (Italy)/Raise the Red Lantern (Zhang Yimou) (China)/Delicatessen (Jean-Pierre Jeunet/Marc Caro) (France)/Barton Fink (Joel Coen) (USA)/Europa (Lars von Trier) (Denmark)/The commitments (Alan Parker)(Ireland/England/USA)/Thelma & Louise (Ridley Scott) (USA)/Shadows and Fog (W.Allen) (USA)/High Hills (Pedro Alomdovar) (Spain)/JFK (Oliver Stone) (USA)/The Adjuster (Atom Egoyan) (Canada)/The Doors (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Defending your life (Albert Brooks) (USA)/Fried Green Tomatoes (Jon Avnet) (USA)/Bugsy (Barry Levinson) (USA)/Cape Fear (Martin Scorsese) (USA)/In the Alleys of Love (Khosrow Sinai) (Iran)/Naked Lunch (David Cronenberg) (Canada/England)

1992:Unforgiven (Clint Eastwood)(USA)/Indochine (Regie Wargnier) (France)/A few good men (Rob Reiner) (USA)/The best intentions (Bille August) (Sweden)/A River runs through it (Robert Redford) (USA)/Leolo (Jean-Calude Lauzon) (Canada)/The crying game (Neil Jordan) (USA)/Damage (Louis Malle) (France/England) /The Player (Robert Altman) (USA)/Reservoir Dogs (Quentin Tarantino)(USA)/Lessons of darkness (Werner Herzog) (Germany)/The Quince tree sun (Victor Erice) (Spain)/Bob Roberts (Tim Robins) (USA)/Basic instinct (Paul Verhoeven) (USA)/Batman returns (Tim Burton) (USA)/Life and nothing more (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/Once Upon a Time, Cinema (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/Hard Boiled (John Woo) (China)/Shining through (David Seltzer) (USA/England)/Final Analysis (Phil Jaonu) (USA)/A Stranger among us (Sydney Lumet) (USA)/Single white female (Barbet Schroder) (USA)/The last of the Mohicans (Michael Mann) (USA)/Glengarry Glen Ross (James Foley) (USA)/Hero (Stephen Frears) (USA)/Bram Stoker’s Dracula (F.Coppola) (USA)/Malcolm X (Spike Lee) (USA)/Bad Lieutenant (Abel Ferrara) (USA)/Toys (Barry Levinson) (USA)/The Lover (Jean-Jacques Annaud) (France)/Scent of a woman (Martin Brest) (USA)/Hoffa (Danny DeVito) (USA)/Belle époque (Fernando Terueba) (Spain)/Strictly Ballroom (Baz Luhrmann) (Australia)

1993:Schindler’s list (Spielberg) (USA)/Philadelphia (Jonathan Demme) (USA)/Farewell my concubine (Chen Kaig) (China)/The scent of green papaya (Tran Anh Hung) (Vietnam/France)/Falling down (Joel Schumacher) (USA)/What’s eating Gilbert Grape (Lasse Hallstrom) (USA)/D’Est (From the East) (Chantal Akerman) (Russia/Poland/Germany)/ Three Colors: Blue (Krzysztof Kieslowski) (Poland/Frnace/Switzerland)/Searching for Bobby Fischer (Steven Zailian) (USA) /Jurassic Park (Spielberg) (USA)/Benny’s video (Michael Haneke) (Austria/Switzerland) /Mrs. Doubtfire (Chris Columbus) (USA)/The Fugitive (Andrew Davis) (USA)/The Firm (Sydney Pollack) (USA) /Indecent Proposal (Adrian Lyne) (USA)/The Pelican Brief (Alan J. Pakula) (USA) /The Age of Innocence (Scorsese) (USA) /The Piano (Jane Campion) (New Zealand) /A Bronx Tale (Robert De Niro) (USA)/Shadowlands (Richard Attenborough) (England)/ Carlito’s Way (Brian De Palma) (USA)/A Perfect World (Clint Eastwood) (USA)/Iron Monkey (Yuen Wo-ping) (China)/In the name of the father (Ireland/England)/ Manhattan Murder Mystery (W.Allen) (USA)

1994:Pulp Fiction (Qunetin Tarantino) (USA)/Burnt by the sun (Nikita Mikhalkov)/Forest Gump (Robert Zemeckis) (USA)/Eat, drink, man, woman (Ang Lee) (Taiwan)/Satantango (Bela Tarr) (Hungry)/Strawberry and chocolate (Tomas Gutierrez) (Cuba/Mexico)/Il Postino (Michael Radford/Massimo Troisi) (Italy)/Chungking express (Wong Kar-Wai) (China)/Shawshank Redemption (Frank Darabont)/Ed Wood (Tim Burton) (USA)/Three colors: White (Krzysztof Kieslowski) (France/Poland/Switzerland)/Three Colors: Red (Krzysztof Kieslowski) (France/Poland/Switzerland)/Leon: The Professional (Luc Besson) (France)/Hoop dreams (Steve James)/The Lion King (Roger Allers/Rob Minkoff) (USA)/Crumb (Terry Zwigoff) (USA)/Four weddings and a funeral (Mike Newell) (England)/Through the Olive trees (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/The Mask (Chuck Russel) (USA)/Speed (Jan de Bont) (USA)/Natural Born Killers (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Disclosure (Barry Levinson) (USA)/Bullets over Broadway (W.Allen) (USA)/Immortal beloved (Bernard Rose) (England/USA)

1995:Seven (David Fincher) (USA)/Leaving Las Vegas (Mike Figgis) (USA)/Apollo 13 (Ron Howard) (USA)/12 Monkeys (Terry Giliam) (USA) /Sense and sensibility (Ang Lee) (USA)/Toy story (John Lasseter) (USA)/Braveheart (Mel Gibson) (USA)/Antonia’s line (Marleen Gorris) (The Netherland)/Underground (Emir Kusturica) (Serbia/Bulgaria/France)/Ulysses’ gaze (Theo Angelopoulos) (Greece) /Dead Man Walking (Tim Robbins) (USA)/Before Sunrise (Richard Linklater) (USA)/The White Balloon (Jafar Panahi)(Iran) /Mighty Aphrodite (W.Allen) (USA)/Hello Cinema (Mohsen Makhmalbaf)(Iran)/Babe (Chris Noonan) (USA)/Casino (Scorsese) (USA)/The usual suspects (Bryan Singer) (USA)/Rob Roy (Michael Caton-Jones) (USA)/The Bridges of Madsion County (Clint Eastwood) (USA)/Sabrina (Sydnye Pollack) (USA)/Nixon (Oliver Stone) (USA) /Jade (William Friedkin) (USA)/To die for (Gus Van Sant) (USA)/Canadian Bacon (Michael Moore) (USA)/Les Miserables (Claude Lelouch) (France)/Don Juan DeMarco (Jeremy Leven) (USA)

1996:The English Patient (Anthony Minghella) (USA)/Fargo (Joel Coen) (USA/England)/Secret and Lies (Mike Leigh) (England/France)/Shine (Scott Hicks) (Australia)/Kolya (Jan Sverak) (Czech Republic)/Lone Star (John Sayles) (USA)/Breaking the waves (Lars von Trier) (Denmark/Englnad)/Mission impossible (Brian De Palma) (USA)/Kansas City (Robert Altman) (USA)/Gabbeh (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/The Island of Dr. Moreau (John Frankenheimer) (USA) /Michael Collins (Neil Jordan)(USA)/Sleepers (Barry Levinson) (USA)/Sling Blade (Billy Bob Thornton) (USA)/Jack (F.Coppola) (USA)/The Birdcage (Mike Nichols) (USA)

1997:Titanic (James Cameron) (USA)/Good will hunting (Gus Van Sant) (USA)/Midnight in the garden of good and evil (Clint Eastwood) (USA)/Character (Karakter) (Mike van Diem) (Netherland/Belgium)/ Mad City (Costa Gavras) (USA/Fireworks (Hana-bi) (Takeshi Kitano) (Japan)/The Disappearance of Garcia Lorca (Death in Granada) (Marcos Zurinaga) (Spain)/Taste of Cherry (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/As good as it gets (James Brooks) (USA)/The Sweet Hereafter (Atom Egoyan) (Canada)/Children of Heaven (Majid Majidi) (Iran)/A,B,C…Manhattan (Amir Naderi)(Iran/USA)/L.A. Confidential (Curtis Hanson) (USA)/Mimic (Guillermo del Toro) (USA)/The Fifth Element (Luc Besson) (France)/Jackie Brown ((Tarantino) (USA)/Amistad (Spielberg) (USA)/Donnie Brasco (Mike Newell) (USA)/The Lost World: Jurassic Park (Spielberg) (USA)/4 Little girls (Spike Lee) (USA)/Life is beautiful (Roberto Benigni) (Italy)/The Mirror (Jafar Panahi) (Iran) /The Rainmaker (F.Coppola) (USA)/U Turn (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Contact (Zemeckis) (USA)/Live Flesh (Almodovar) (Spain/France)/Night falls on Manhattan (Sydney Lumet) (USA)/Affliction (Paul Schrader)(USA)/The Boxer (Jim Sheridan) (Ireland)

1998:Saving private Ryan (Spielberg) (USA)/Central Station (Walter Salles) (Brazil)/Ringu (Hideo Nakata) (Japan)/Run Lola Run (Tom Tykwer) (Germany)/The celebration (Festen) (Thomas Vinterberg) (Denmark)/Histoire du cinema (Jean-Luc Godard) (France)/The Legend of 1900 (Giuseppe Tornatore) (Italy)/The Apple (Samira Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/Armageddon (Michael Bay) (USA)/Shakespeare in Love (John Madden)/American History X (Tony Kaye) (USA)/The Pear Tree (Dariush Mehrjui) (Iran)/The Truman Show (Peter Weir) (USA)/The Idiots (Idioterne) (Lars von Trier) (Denmark)/Elizabeth (Shekhar Kapur)(England)/The Big Lebowski (Joel and Ethan Coen) (USA)/To be or not to be (Kianoush Ayari) (Iran)/Gods and Monsters (Bill Condon) (England/USA)/Primary Colors (Mike Nichols) (USA)/Ronin (John Frankenheimer) (USA)/Meet Joe Black (Martin Brest) (USA)/The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick) (USA)/The Red Violin (Francois Girard) (Canada/Italy/England)

1999:The Matrix (The Wachowskis) (USA)/The sixth sense (M. Night Shyamalan) (USA)/All about my mother (Pedro Almodovar) (Spain)/American Beauty (Sam Mendes) (USA)/Being John Malkovich (Spike Jonze) (USA)/Rosetta (Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne) (France)/Angela’s ashes (Alan Parker) (Ireland/England/USA)/Buena Vista Social Club (Wim Wenders) (Germany/USA/France/Cuba)/The Green Mile (Frank Darabont) (USA)/Second skin (Gerardo Vera) (Spain)/The Cider House Rules (Lasse Hallstrom) (USA)/Girl, Interrupted (James Mangold) (USA)/Peppermint candy (Lee Chang-dong) (South Korea)x/The Talented Mr. Ripley (Anthony Minghella) (USA)/Audition (Takashi Miike) (Japan)//Cookie’s Fortune (Robert Altman) (USA)/Yana’s Friends (Arik Kaplun) (Israel)/Bringing out the dead (Scorsese) (USA)/Mr. Death: The Rise and Fall of Fred A. Leuchter, Jr. (Errol Morris) (USA)/Solomon & Gaenor (Paul Morrison) (England)/Audition (Takashi Miike) (Japan)/Toy Story 2 (John Lasseter) (USA)/The Wind will carry us (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)/The Hurricane (Norman Jewison)(USA)/Magnolia (Paul Thomas Anderson) (USA)/Himalaya (Eric Valli) (Nepal)/Music of the Heart (Was Craven) (USA)/Felicia Journey (Atom Egoyan) (Canada)x/Under the Sun (Colin Nutley) (Sweden)/The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc (Luc Besson) (France)/Man on the Moon (Milos Forman) (USA)/Anna and the King (Andy Tennat) (USA)/The Virgin Suicides (Sofia Coppola) (USA)/Celebrity (W.Allen) (USA) 1998/East/West (Regis Wargnier)(France/Bulgaria/Russia/Spain/Ukraine)/Random Hearts (Sydney Pollack) (USA)/Liberty Heights (Barry Levinson) (USA)/The Insider (Michael Mann) (USA)/Boys don’t Cry (Kimberly Peirce) (USA)/Analyze this (Harold Ramis) (USA)/Eyes Wide Shut (Kubrick)(England/USA)/Any Given Sunday (Oliver Stone) (USA)/Snow falling on cedars (Scott Hicks) (USA)

2000: Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Ang Lee)(China/Taiwan)/ Gladiator (Ridley Scott) (USA)/Chocolat (Lasse Hallstrom) (USA/Englnd)/Djomeh (Friday) (Hassan Yektabakhsh) (Iran)/Traffic (Steven Soderbergh) (USA)/In the mood for love (Wong Kar-wai) (China)/Amores perros (1/3) (Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu) (Mexico)/The house of mirth (Terence Davies) (England/Germany/USA)/Blackboards (Samira Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/Werckmeister harmonies (Bela Tarr) (Hungry)/Finding Forester (Gus Van Sant) (USA)/A time for drunken horses (Bahman Ghobadi) (Iran)/The Gleaners and I (Agnes Varda) (France)/Pay it Forward (Mimi Leder) (USA)/The Taste of Others (Agnes Jaoui) (France)/The Circle (Jafar Panahi) (Iran)/Battle Royale (Kinji Fukasaku) (Japan)/Almost Famous (Cameron Crowe) (USA)/Malena (Giuseppe Tornatore) (Italy)/Cast Away (Robert Zemeckis) (USA)/Billy Elliot (Stephen Daldry) (England)/O Brother where art thou? (Joel Coen) (USA) (England/France)/The Legend of Bagger Vance (Robert Redford) (USA)/Wonder Boys (Curtis Hanson) (USA)/Pollock (Ed Harris) (USA)/All the Pretty Horses (Billy Bob Thornton) (USA)

2001:Spirited away (Hayao Miyazaki) (Japan)/A beautiful mind (Ron Howard) (USA)/Mulholland Dr. (David Lynch) (USA)/The Lord of the rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (Peter Jackson) (USA)/Baran (Majid Majidi) (Iran)/Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Chris Columbus) (USA)/Black Hawk down (Ridley Scott) (USA) /La Cienaga (The Swamp)(Lucrecia Martel)(Argentina/Spain/France)/Ocean’s Eleven (Steven Soderbergh) (USA)/Millennium Mambo (Hou Hsiao-hsien) (Taiwan)/Amelie (Jean-Pierre Jeunet)/ (France/Germany)/ Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (Zacharias Kunuk) (Canada)/Pearl Harbor (Michael Bay) (USA)/A.I. Artificial Intelligence (Spielberg) (USA)/Hannibal (Ridley Scott) (USA)/Moulin Rouge (Baz Luhrmann)/Ali (Michael Mann) (USA)/I am Sam (Jessie Nelson) (USA)/The Piano teacher (Michael Haneke) (Frnace/Austria/Germany)/Y TuMama Tambien (Alfonso Curaon) (Mexico)/Gosford Park (Robert Altman) (USA)/Kandahar (Mohsen Makhmalbaf) (Iran)/Enemy at the Gates (Jean-Jacques Annaud) (US/France/Germany)/In Praise of Love (Godard) (France)

2002:The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (Peter Jackson) (USA)/Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Chris Columbus) (England/USA)/Spider Man (Sam Raimi) (USA)/Road to Perdition (Sam Mendes) (USA)/Pinocchio (Roberto Benigni) (Italy)/Ice Age (Chris Wedge/Carlos Saldanha) (USA)/Catch me if you can (Spielberg)/Gangs of New York (Scorsese) (USA) /The Bourne identity (Doug Liman) (USA)/My Big Fat Greek Wedding (Joel Zwick)/Minority Report (Spielberg)(USA)/Bowling for Columbine (Michael Moore) (USA)/Frida (Julie Taymor) ((USA)/The Cuckoo (Kukushka) (Aleksandr Rogozhkin) (Russia)/The Magdalene Sisters (Peter Mullan) (England/Ireland)/ Bloody Sunday (Paul Greengrass( (England/Ireland)/Talk to her (Pedro Almodovar) (Spain)/City of God (Fernando Meirelles/Katia Lund) (Brazil)/Hero (Zhang Yimou) (China)/About Schmidt (Alexander Payne) (USA)/The pianist (Polanski) (France/Germany/Poland/England)/ Confession of a dangerous mind (George Clooney) (USA)/Chicago (Rob Marshal) (USA)/The Hours (Stephen Daldry) (USA)/Solaris (Steven Soderbergh) (USA)/Adaptation (Spike Jonze) (USA)/Nowhere in Africa (Caroline Link) (USA)/The Crime of Padre Amaro (Carlos Carrera) (Mexico/Spain)/Secret Ballot (Babak Payami) (Iran)/Bus 174 (Jose Padilha) (Brazil)/Marooned in Iraq (Bahman Ghobadi) (Iran)/In my skin (Marina de Van) (France) /Russian Ark (Alexander Sokurov) (Russia)/ The Day I became a Woman (Marzieh Meshkini) (Iran)/Hukkle (Gyorgy Palfi) (Hungry)/Ten (Abbas Kiarostami) (Iran)


The Greatest films of all time: 88. Finding Nemo (2003) (USA)

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The science fiction and fantasy that Spielberg and Lucas started in films at the end of the past 20th century, proceeded to more unrealistic fantasies, magic and sorcery in the new 21st century by others with films such as Lord of The rings, Harry Potter and Pirate of the Caribbean that all went to series of franchises like other capitalist commodities. In between from Pixar animation studios that produced the first fully animated film of Toy Story that continued until the most recent fourth edition, came out “Finding Nemo” that was more rational and not stupefying the audience like the others. Moreover the visual beauty of the film electrified the viewers while its heartwarming and at times thrilling story was well absorbed by the children and adults alike.

Andrew Stanton who wrote the story of all Toy Story series, wrote and also directed “Finding Nemo”. With the amazing cinematography of Sharon Calahan and assistant Jeremy Lasky, “Finding Nemo” is an eye-catching visual art of a combination of old style Disney’s colorful cartoons crafted with digital animation. The set location of the story being deep in the ocean with all colorful sea lives under demanded the film to be perfectly vivid and eye pleasing that the makers of this great film achieved. Winner of the Academy Award for Best animated Feature, “Finding Nemo” became the highest grossing animated film and the second highest grossing film of 2003. The film also became the best-selling DVD title of all time selling over 40 million copies.

A Pleasure to the Eyes and Beyond:

“Finding Nemo” is a celebration of the wonderful and colorful life deep in the ocean while telling a tangible story with thrills. A clown fish couple arrive in an ocean neighborhood where they chose it as their new living place. The female lays many eggs with the plan to raise their family there, but a barracuda attack kills and consumes her and all the eggs, except one that the father clown fish, Marlin names Nemo. Nemo grows enough to attend school with the other fishes and sea creatures. On the first day of school, Nemo with his schoolmates when they see a boat, tease each other for who could get close to the boat and touch it that Nemo does and suddenly gets caught in a net by a scuba diver.

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Marlin having lost all his family and now the last one Nemo is in captivity, in panic chases the boat, but with no luck and Nemo later on is sold to a dentist in Sydney, Australia and thrown in an aquarium. Marlin in the search of finding Nemo desperately looking and asking around. He runs into a blue fish, Dori who has very short memory and despite her shortcoming, eagerly is trying to help Marlin to find Nemo. In their chase, Marlin sees the mask of the diver that falls in the water and Dori reads an address on it and despite her short memory loss, she knows where the place is. The couple keep swimming and passing through quite many places and adventures, including three sharks, a school of moonfish who make beautiful shapes and help them with the direction by dancing and assembling together. In their chase adventure they encounter a forest of jellyfish that stings them almost to death, but when they wake up from their loss of consciousness from the stings, they find themselves on the east Australian current. Here they meet a sea turtle family who spread the news across the ocean and a pelican named Nigel brings the news of the location of Nemo in the dentist office.

Pictured: Marlin (the father clownfish) takes his son, Nemo, to his first day of school.

Meanwhile the fishes in the dentist’s office aquarium are also trying all to escape including Nemo. One of the fish, Gill has an escape plan and sends Nemo to go through the aquarium filter and jam it with a pebble so the dentist having to put the fishes in a plastic bag while the tank is cleaned, with the hope to jump into the ocean out of the window somehow. Nigel the pelican helps Marlin and Dori to escape from a bunch of wild seagulls who want to eat them, but they are engulfed by a blue whale and when Dori communicates with the whale, he carries them the Sydney Harbour. In the aquarium, Nemo through Nigel finding about his father’s search for him, is encouraged again to attempt for escape after the fish first attempt fails by the dentist buying a new high tech filter. The second time he succeeds, the filter stops and the tank is infested with algae. Nemo pretends to be dead so not to be given to the dentist Darla who is aggressive and might kill him. Finally gill helps Nemo pass through the drain down to the ocean. Marlin thinking the Nemo has died, in grief swims back to his home reef, but Dori finds Nemo alive and they swim back to Marlin the son and father join back together. The film ends with Nemo being back to school and another field trip.

“Finding Nemo” despite being a highly digital animated film, but once again proved that cinema is a visual moving art and should not lose its essence even when computer than camera does most of the work. “Finding Nemo” is a proof of concept that cinema even in its modern digital special effects could create visual pleasure, thrill and awe with more cinematography, music and action. With one of the highest rating of 99% on the review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes and 90% on Metacritic, “Finding Nemo” has been hailed as one of the best animations of all time.  

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In closing remarks “Finding Nemo” one more time will be redefined based on the following criteria:  

  1. Originality: While “Finding Nemo” is not the first totally animated film, but it is the first visually absorbing, with the images under the sea life looking and feeling so real that digital special effects are forgiven for robbing the art of cinema from classic camera work.  
  2. Technicality: The technicality of “Finding Nemo” is in its application of digital animation at a very visual art level to remain in the realm of cinema with its amazing cinematography.
  3. Impact Factor: The influence of “Finding Nemo” has been on many future films afterwards that kept the trend and brought visual beauty back to cinema.
  4. Survival: “Finding Nemo” has survived well to this day for still being fresh, tender, a rarity and still one of the most favourite animated films of the children.

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Welcome to a New Cinema Site

Cinema that was invented in the last decade of 19th century,  flourished in the 20th century and for the most part,it was the most popular and in a way the most creative art format, borrowing from other art forms. After the invention of television, and the production of TV films in the second half of the last century, and later on the internet media and the new age of digitalism and online streaming or stealing of the movies, at least over the past couple of decades, Cinema has lost its glory. At the same time, while in the first half or most of the 20th century, Cinema was heavily in the hands of story tellers, photographers, and actors, who were all led by the filmmaker or the creator, in the last few decades of the past century and more so in the present 21st century, it is dominated by digital special effects and out of reality. So cinema as an art format has greatly transformed to a technical/digital industry. Along the many efforts across the globe to save this modern art against the box office sales pressure and capital demand, this site hopes to contribute a small part in this endeavor!       


What is Cinema?

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Cinema initially sprang from photography, so that later on and to this day, it is called “motion picture” or “movies”, while the term “film” could be used for both cinema and photography. In the beginning, cinema was simply, pictures in motion with no other adding arts or technology, such as sound, music, or else, but acting. That is why for the first few decades since the birth of cinema, the movies were “silent” and this art form had to rely basically on the power of imagery with all its cinematographic components and the filmmakers like painters on canvas had to do whatever they could to create a powerful moving picture on the screen in addition to silent acting without talk. In this endeavor, some relied on set design, the use of light and shadows, like the German expressionists, and some relied on editing like Eisenstein, and some relied mostly on acting and sensible realism like Chaplin. At the time and even today, it is easier to rate and rank a silent film, as there were no white noise of sound or talk and all were imagery and picture in motion to measure. Due to simplicity, originality and the role of these pure ingredients, the silent films are still on the top of many best films of all time, such as the works of Serge Eisenstein, Fritz Lang, D.W.Griffith, and Charles Chaplin.

The sound brought theatrical acting to the cinema despite strong oppositions of silent films’ actors who were great action actors, specially in comedy. While 1920’s were still dominated by the silent movies, the 1930’s were the era of infiltration of theatrical acting to cinema that lasted for several decades until the recent domination of special effects and interception of digitalism into cinema. Orson Welles, Humphrey Bogart, Catharine Hepburn, Bette Davis, Vivien Leigh, James Dean and Marlon Brando were such actors who stemmed from theatre or acted as such. This continued to the modern era so that the newer actors such as Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Leonardo DiCaprio continued with such legacy. The theatrical acting while added rich flavor to the story telling and content through dialogues to the cinema, in many instances became very close to theatrical plays and robbed the cinematic experience and presentation, and limited the filmmakers in showing their talents. This is somewhat parallel to the digital cinema nowadays, where digitalism and special effects have totally stolen the rich cinematic creation.

Lastly cinema as a common art medium unlike other arts, but like music cannot be “an art for art”, but “art for all”. This means that cinema as the only art medium, while being complex and applying other art media for enrichment, it has to be for everyone, entertaining and enlightening all. A great film could please the viewers of all kinds, from the ordinary minds to the most intellectual and critical ones.

Evaluation, rating and ranking movies, is not a matter of personal taste, likeness, or even a collective voting of majority, as the majority could be wrong and do not consider all the components of a film, with a delicate consideration of the differential factors. In other words, the role of camera, acting and editing are not the same and do not carry the similar weights as special effect. Unfortunately this has not been done closely in most rating and ranking of the motion pictures and the best lists, or awards such as Oscar. Beyond the different components of a film, that somewhat and singularly are recognized as in awards for script, acting, editing, directing, etc., the following factors in ranking the best films are essential. (Of course based on the following criteria, the earlier a film, the higher the rank would be, except the films that in addition to these factors, they have the “best impression” that could go beyond the time boundary. This is certainly very rare and on our list could include only a few rare top films such as “The Battleship Potemkin”, “Man with a movie camera” and “Metropolis”. Finally any originality and technicality if not cinematic or visual and at the service of story telling, entertainment or enlightening , like experimental works of some such as Godard do not count in this site evaluation and ranking of the films.    

  1. Originality: No matter how well a film has been made today, if it is a copy of an original work, or an adaptation in one form or another, it would put it out of any best rank. An original work, even if not well done to perfection, it is still original and a creation that needs to be considered. Of course the earlier films fairly take on a lot of credits from this factor, but this may encourage the true filmmakers not to be copiers or followers but original and creative!
  2. Technicality: This factor should cover all the technical aspects of filmmaking from the story and script to the all works of camera, acting, editing, special effects, etc. The originality and proper application of each technique or component need to be considered in ranking.
  3. Impact Factor/Significance: This is the factor influencing other films, urging them to copy and experience the original work in part or in whole. This factor is not only the influence that an original work has on the industry, but on people in general and other forms of art and aspects of life as well. In conjunction with the influence that a film could have on other films or else, the significance of the film on cinema as a whole and on the history of this art medium is important and will be counted on.
  4. Survival: This shows how long a work, no matter how great, it will be remembered and looks fresh for years to come, specially in the eyes of the true cinema patriots.

 Throughout this site, in writing on films and ranking them, the above factors will be delicately considered, though no evaluation or ranking could be rightful. Such comprehensive evaluation and ranking will hopefully encourage others to take on such or similar process in ranking and awarding, and avoiding a single factor such as the content of the story for political or trend of the time reasons!         


The Greatest films of all time: 87. City of God (2002) (Brazil)

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While cinema in Hollywood and the western countries falls at a non-imaginable speed, the global cinema in other countries such as Mexico, Iran, China and Brazil rises. “City of God” in a big surprise comes out of Brazil, a country that had never released a major feature film. This time and this film is not about poverty, children and war torn lands, but about all of these and more. Ironically the city of God is not a religious city running by God or his representatives, but it is a slum outskirt of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, far away from the postal card beauty of its beaches. In the city of God, poverty, guns, violence and drug lords and ruthless gangs rule. In the city of God worse than the war torn lands of Africa and middle east, the children are armed and dangerous, so “If you run the beast catches you, if you stay the beast eats you”.

Directed by Fernando Meirelles who started filmmaking in late 80s with not much success internationally, City of God brought global attention to him so that three years later in 2005 was hired by producers in England, US and Germany to make “The Constant Gardner” with a full English and American cast. The film’s opening symbolically and at the same time realistically introduces the City of God to the audience by showing a large blade is sharpened on a stone to slain chickens. The frightened look of a chicken witnessing the slain of his fellow chickens and being dipped in hot water is smartly amazing. The scared chicken manages to escape and a bunch of boys carrying guns in their hands chase to catch the her on the streets. The boys start shooting at the poor chicken and ask the passer byes to catch her with no reservation to shoot at whoever does not obey their demand. The chicken finally stops between the gang and a young normal boy, Rocket (Alexandre Rodrigues) while all the guns are aimed at him to catch the chicken or will be shot at. Rocket then starts narrating the story of his neighborhood and that his family like many others escaped the expensive Rio to live there in peace.

The film flashes back to how things started with the “Tender Tri”, three petit thieves, Shaggy (Jonathan Haagensen), Clipper (Jefechander Suplino), and Rocket’s older brother, Goose (Renato de Souza) robbing trucks and share the money with the community who, in turn, hid them from the police. A young boy, Li’l Dice (Douglas Silva) who tries to be part of the gang and smarter than the trio, convinces them to hold up a motel and rob its occupants that earn them more money than robbing trucks. While the trio plans not to kill anyone but rob the occupants, Li’l Dice who lies that the police is coming and forcing them to flee in a stolen car, goes in the motel after they leave and massacre everyone even the employees of the motel ruthlessly. The gang split, Shaggy runs away home and Goose and Clipper hides in the woods. Two detectives who follow them into the woods, one suggests to the other to keep the stolen money for themselves when they arrest the gang. Here the film shows both sides being, but one on the law side and the others outlaws.

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The massacre changes the trio’s lives, Clipper scared of the police decides to leave the gang life and joins the church, Shaggy is shot by the police while trying to escape and Goose is shot by Li’l Dice after taking his money. The day Shaggy died and while on the ground his picture was taken by the reporters, Rocket for the first time sees a camera and decides to buy one and starting photography. One day on the beach with his friends, taking photos, his eyes fall on the beautiful Angelica (Alice Braga) and falls in love with her. The beautiful camera shots with angles, close ups and panoramic. To please Angelica, Rocket would do anything and go anywhere including going to the drug dealers and get her some.

Entering the apartment of the drug dealer, Blacky (Leandro Firmino da Hora) to buy Angelica some coke, Rocket tells the story of the apartment where was a base of drug trafficking in the city of God. Dona Zelica when her husband, a drug dealer dies runs the business herself to feed her children and employs the neighborhood kids. Soon the best of these delaer kids, Carrot (Matheus Nachtergaele) takes over the operation and later on finds the place ill fated, he passes it on to Blacky. Then Li’l Dice who has been popular as ruthless robber and killer and extensively frightened, by encouragement of his friend Benny ((Phellipe Haagensen) that drugs are more profitable kills Blacky and takes over hhis business and calls himself Lil’ Z. Here the film flashes back in narration, showing how Lil’ Z startedas a young boy with the shooting massacre of the motel years back. He narrates that he killed everyone in the motel even the employees just for fun as he thought his pals had all the fun of the robbery and he had none. He was thrilled by the killing one by one that the film shows graphically. Rocekt, the narrator tells that he fled the city of God to avoid punishment and started working hard for his money and quit misconduct for a while, but as “A hood doesn’t stop, hood takes a break”, when one day Shaggy finds him and takes his earned money, he shoots and kills him and gets back to his killings then drug business. By age 18 Lil’ Z becomes the most popular, respected and feared of hood around, even in Rio.

 Lil’ Z after killing Rocket’s brother, Shaggy let him, the narrator of the story lives. Rocket then narrates how Lil’ Z’s drug mainly cocaine business boomed by employing all the neighborhood kids as dealers and distributors who were the best on the watch over for the police interceptions. The narrator explains how the drug trafficking is like any other business with a hierarchy, from the lookouts or runts who were younger children, to dealers, managers, bosses and on the top Lil’ Z who did not have any rivals anymore and was paying the police’s shares as well so there wouldn’t be anymore shootings and killings in the city of God. Along with the narration, the film visually shows well shot by shot how things were developing graphically.

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Then Rocket tells his own love story of falling in love with Angelica after leaving his boyfriend, Thiago who gets hooked up on the coke after the breakup. But Benny who had changed to be a “playboy” steals the heart of Angelica from Rocket. Meanwhile runts or little kids start robbing the stores that when Lil’ Z finds out, confronts a bunch of them, corners three of them with his gang, asks them where they want to be shot at and shoots at the feet of two young boys. He then hands his gun to the third one to pick one of the two to kill, that he shoots and kills one. Lil’ Z lets the one remaining but bullet in the foot to go back to his home and let everyone knows that no one robs Lil’ Z’s ghetto.

Rocket who has been different than the rest of the kids in the city of God, to make an earning, starts working in a supermarket, but one day when a few runts get in and steal a few things, he gets fired as he was suspected to be an associate by the store manager and did not get paid a cent. Then Rocket desperate with his path of honest living, decides to use his brother, Shaggy’s gun that he had saved to rob somewhere to make some money. With his friend riding a bus, first thought of robbing the bus ticket man, but the man was too nice and let them off for free ride and advised them to get educated and leave the city of God. Across the bus stop, there was a bakery that the two went in to rob, but the girl at the counter was also nice and gave him her phone number to call, so he couldn’t dare to pull his gun at her and rob the place.

Angelica now in love with Benny asks him to leave the city of God and buy a farm and live in peace away from all the killing and drug business. Benny falls in with his girlfriend’s idea and throws goodbye parties for the whole city and its different groups even the religious ones. He tells Lil’ Z and also advises him that he needs a girl in his life as well. In one of Benny’s goodbye party, Lil’ Z who has never had a girlfriend and danced before in his life, asks a girl to dance with him, but gets rejected as she was with her boyfriend. Lil’ Z rejected and angry at the gun point forces the boyfriend to strip and shows his ass to the crowd at the night club. Meanwhile Blacky comes in to kill Lil’ Z, but in the dark misses his target and shoots and kills Benny who was standing beside him.

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Lil’ Z screams and cries in the grief of the loss of his best friend asks Angelica to disappear as he perceives it all as her fault. He leaves the club and runs into a handsome boy, known as Knockout Ned (Seu Jorge) walking with his girlfriend and steals her from him at the gun point and rapes her. Lil’ Z then goes back to Knockout Ned with his gang to kill him, but his young brother who comes out is killed after he stabs Lil’ Z. Knockout Ned in revenge of the life of his brother and reinstate his honor of his girlfriend, goes to kill Lil’ Z, but shoots and kills one of his guys. Then he goes to Carrot who is still active in drug business for support, but he is conditioned if he joins his gang that he reluctantly accept on the condition of not killing innocent people.

The partnership of Knockout Ned with Carrot goes beyond the drug business to holdups, first a gun store to acquire more guns then banks and else. The promise of no killings finds one exception when during one of the robberies, a bank employee who tried to pull out a gun at the gang gets shot by Carrot. Then in another holdup, Knockout Ned had to shoot and kill a guard who reached for his revolver so the exception became the rule and necessary. Now the Knockout Ned and Carrot’s gang had become more armed than Lil’ Z’s gang and equipped with all kinds of ammunition including automatic rifles. Finally the war breaks out between the two gangs and the ghetto that was a purgatory became a hell, and a sweet revenge turns to an all-out-war. Rocket meanwhile started working in delivery of the local newspaper and gets close to the photographer of the paper who when found Rocket’s interest in photography, he introduces him to the chief editor.

The city of God gradually was divided into two sections run by the two rival gangs. This over time becomes an excuse for every kid and youngsters to join one or the other, sometimes for revenge from someone or just for fun and power. Like Vietnam, the ghetto was covered with dead bodies everywhere, so that attracts the attention of the media including the local paper that publishes some articles and pictures of the situation. Knockout Ned after finding a young boy, Steak (Darian Cunha) on their side being killed by Lil’ Z’s gang, volunteers for interview by the newspaper and claims while he has been arrested and jailed before, Lil’ Z has not been touched yet for all his crimes. His published photo in the paper angers Lil’ Z who wants to show everyone and the media who’s the real boss. He with his gang ask Rocket to take their pictures while being armed to the teeth for show off. Rocket drops off the film roll to the for development at the newspaper’s office, that in his absence draw the attention of a female editor who thought to be from their own photographer and publishes it on the first page the very next day. Rocket seeing the photo while delivering the papers, gets frightened that he would be killed by Lil’ Z’s gang when they see their pictures in the paper. To his surprise Rocket’s picture is liked by all including the publisher who offers him more money for more pictures and a new fancy camera. He is also liked by the female editor who published his photo to her apartment, so Rocket having his first sexual experience.

The next day, the film goes back to “the beginning of the end” as its title reads on the screen. Lil’ Z hands in guns to a bunch of young kids to be on his side against Carrot’s gang and offers them free chicken to eat that the film goes back to the opening scene, while showing a sharpening knife slaughtering the chickens then they are dipped in the hot water and when a scared chicken runs away, and stops by the feet of Rocket with his new camera hanging on his neck. At this point the film shows the rest of the end of the film that a few policemen appear in front of Lil’ Z’s gang but since the gang are outnumbered, they leave. While Lil’ Z asking Rocket to take his gang’s picture, a shot is heard and one of the gang boy shown being shot in the chest and falls on the ground. Here an all-out shooting and killings commence with an ending of many dead bodies all around and those who are alive arrested by the police. Finally when one imagines all have ended, the next scene shows a bunch of very young kids who are still armed taking over and declaring that the city of God is all theirs now.

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City of God received world-wide acclaim and nominated for the best foreign language film, best cinematography, screenplay, editing and , direction by the Academy Awards. The film was also a success in its own country, Brazil where Meirelles and Lund created a similar “City of Men” TV series in the same setting of the city of God. He film also drew the largest audience of over 3 million in 2003 of any domestic film and sold over $ 10 million. One of the 100 greatest films of all time by TIME magazine, “50 Films to see before you die” by Film 4, ranked 7 by Empire magazine of the best films of world cinema, number 6 by The Guardian on its list of “the 25 best action movies ever’, the film was hailed as “breathtaking and terrifying” and its director was recognized of having great gifts and passions. The film also on the list of top ten best films of 2003 ranked 2nd in Chicago Sun Times by Roger Ebert, and Chicago Tribune, 4th on New York Post and Time Magazine,, 7th on Chicago Tribune, and 10th on the Hollywood Reporter and The New York Times. With its timely script by Braulio Mantovani, based on the “City of God” by Paulo Lins, superb cast, music score of Antonio Pinto, editing of Daniel Rezendo and undoubtedly the eye catching cinematography of Cesar Charlone and above all with the great direction of Fernando Meirelles and his associate Katia Lund, the City of God is a film to be remembered for long time to come.    


In closing remarks “City of God” one more time will be redefined based on the following criteria:  

  1. Originality: The originality of “City of God” above all is in being the first crime film run by youngsters that frightens not the viewers on the screen for a couple of hours but scares us all if such a situation existed in Brazil or exists anywhere in the world that we have witnessed in the media to be so in quite few places in our world.
  2. Technicality: The technicality of “City of God” is in its script, direction, location and set design, cinematography, editing and the superb cast performance. The film is one of the very few in the history of cinema to be thrilling and fit in place despite it narrative format that could often be redundant and boring.
  3. Impact Factor: The influence of “City of God” has been in its own country Brazil that followed by the TV series of “City of Men” and on the global cinema to depict similar stories or facts existing in the rest of the world on the screen.
  4. Survival: “City of God” has survived well to this day for its terrifying and eye-opening depiction of bitter reality of some places on this earth. The film’s powerful cinematic presentation has survived since its release and will survive for many years to come without losing any of its horrifying impact.




The Greatest films of all time: 86. Kandahar (2001) (Iran)

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Mohsen Makhmalbaf, the creator of Kandahar started his filmmaking more independently than the rest of the new wave filmmakers in Iran who rose out of the Institute for the intellectual development of children and young adults. Makhmalbaf holding free and revolutionary ideology from his teens, spending 5 years in the Shah’s jails for stabbing a policeman and released only on the wake of the Islamic revolution, soon used camera to bring the bitter neorealism of the suppressed Iranian culture for thousands of years to the screen.  

His second film “Boycott” in 1985 exposed the dictatorship regime of Shah of Iran through depicting the story of a political activist being charged with death sentence only for his communist ideology. With his third feature “The Peddler”, Makhmalbaf reached a global level of audience and proved to have mastery over the visual art of cinema, and not being only an intellectual ideologist. With his artistic and thoughtful use of camera, beautiful and colorful cinematography, masterful editing and mix of proper music scores, Makhmalbaf became a world level master of cinema, specially with “The Cyclist”. Righteously he picked the ordinary and poor people in their struggles for survival in life as the common subjects of his films, and this way he showed well to the world the suppression of his people in Iran and their neighbor Afghanistan with their culture, and cry for freedom.


Before his greatest masterpiece, Kandahar, Makhmalbaf from 1986 when he made “Boycott”, created one film almost every year, “The Peddler” in 1987, “the Cyclist” and “Marriage of the Blessed” in 1989, “the Nights of Zayande-rood” in 1990, “Time of Love” in 1991, “Once upon a time, Cinema” in 1992, “The Artist” in 1993, “Hello Cinema” in 1995, “A Moment of Innocence” and “Gabbeh” in 1996, “The Silence” in 1998, “Tales of Kish” in 1999, and “Tales of an Island” in 2000, and in between several short films. Unfortunately Makhmalbaf who fought the dictatorship of Shah with the hope of a democratic revolution, had to continue with his fight against another dictatorship that finally banned him of his enlightening filmmaking and forced him to flee his homeland like a gypsy refugee with his family, running from country to country, Afghanistan, Tajikstan, India and finally France where he could settle. Makhmalbaf is perhaps unique among all the great filmmakers in the world in producing three great filmmakers within his own small nuclear family, his two daughters Samira and Hana Makhmalbaf and his wife Marzieh Meshkini, all known to the global cinema.

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Kandahar: A Journey to the Dark Ages

Kandahar or per its Persian’s title “A Journey to Kandahar” is the story of the journey of a young Afghan woman, Nafas (Nelofar Pazira) who had escaped Afghanistan years ago and now living safely in Canada as a journalist, is back to her war torn country to see her sister who has been left behind. Her sister who is now crippled by stepping on a mine has sent her a letter that she plans to commit suicide on her own behalf and the rest of women suffering in Afghanistan on the last solar eclipse of the millennium. Hence Nafas has only three days to reach her sister save her life, while the journey through a country ruled by Taliban, who treat women as a slave and material possession under cover of Burqa is almost impossible. Getting a ride from a Red cross helicopter, she lands at a refugee camp on the Iran-Afghanistan border with the plan to pass through and reach her sister in Kandahar.

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The Greatest films of all time: 86. Kandahar (2001) (Iran)


The Greatest films of all time: 85. Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001) (Canada)

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At the dawn of the second millennium and the fall of cinema as an enlightening art medium, Hollywood fast and furious facilitated this by stupefying people by depicting sorcery and magic like in the dark ages with films such as “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” and “The Lord of the rings”. But at the same time around the world there has been a huge effort to survive this art medium. Through this endeavor, groundbreaking works of cinema such as “Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner” from the aboriginal Inuit first nation of Canada and “Kandahar” from Iran both for the first time showing the stories of two unknown worlds to a global audience.  

Zacharias Kunuk, the creator of “Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner”, himself of the first nation was born in Kapuivik, one of Canadian arctic island in Nunavut territory of Canada. He attended school in Igloolik, an Inuit hamlet of Nunavut and in order to afford admissions to the movies, carved soapstone sculptures. From his hard work money, he purchased a camera and started taking photos of Inuit hunting scenes. Soon he purchased his first video camera with some basic equipment and taught himself how to make his own films, the first “Nunavut: Our Land” in 1995 before making his masterpiece “Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner” in 2001. The film in the 2004 edition of top 10 Canadian films of all time by Toronto International Film Festival, was voted the 5th greatest Canadian Film of all time and in the last edition of the list in 2015, was ranked the number one and the greatest Canadian film of all time.

An Arctic Epic:

The winner of Camera d’Or of the Cannes Film Festival and six Genie Awards including the Best Motion Picture became Canada’s top-grossing film of 2002. The first feature film ever to be written, directed and acted entirely in the Inuktitut language recites an ancient story of the aboriginals that until the film has been passed down through the centuries of oral tradition. In Igloolik off the Eastern Arctic wilderness at the dawn of the first millennium, the community have been poisoned by a shaman visitor Tungajuaq (Abraham Ulayuruluk) with hatred, infidelity and murders. During a spiritual duel with the shaman, the camp leader Kumaglak (Apayata Kotierk) dies and his leading sign of a walrus-tooth necklace around his neck is taken off and given to his son Sauri (Eugene Ipkarnak) as the new camp leader. The whole camp’s lives stricken by the evil magic of the shaman have been doomed. Tulmaq (Felix Alaralak) has bad luck in hunting and can barely feed his family with his two children, Atanarjuat (Natar Ungalaaq) and Amaqjuaq (Pakak Innuksuk) but Panikpak (Madeline Ivalu) brings meat for his children, hoping that one day their lives will be back normal.

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Atanarjuat grows up to be a fast runner and his brother Amaqjuaq grows to be strong. Atanarjuat pursues the beautiful Atuat (Sylvia Ivalu) provoking jealousy in his rival Oki (Peter-Henry Arnatsiaq). Oki’s sister Puja (Lucy Tulugarjuk) is also attracted to Atanarjuat. In a punching duel with Oki, Atanarjuat wins the right to marry Atuat. Later, Atanarjuat leaves his wife Atuat at a camp to hunt caribou, but he stops at Sauri’s camp where he is persuaded to take Puja on the hunt and when camping by a lake, they have sex. Later on Atanarjuat unhappy in his marriage with Atuat and Puja, catches his brother having sex with Puja and strikes Puja, who flees to Sauri’s camp and lies that Atanarjuat tried to kill her. Sauri and Oki decide to kill Atanarjuat, but since Panikpak is skeptical of Puja’s accusations, she admits to her false accusation and returns to Atanarjuat’s camp apologizing and she is accepted back.

When one day the women are out eggs hunting, Oki and two men sneak up and kill Amaqjuaq sleeping in his tent. Oki is startled by a vision of his grandfather Kumaglak, and Atanarjuat, naked and barefoot bursts out of the tent and runs for miles across the ice, chased by Oki’s gang. Atanarjuat jumps in a wide open crack of the ice and collapses, but rescued by Qulitalik (Pauloosie Qulitalik) the brother of Panikpak and his family, who conceal him when Oki arrives in pursuit. Back at Igloolik, Sauri refuses to let Oki have Atuat, but Oki rapes Atuat, who is comforted by Panikpak. During a hunt, Oki stabs Sauri and claims it was an accident, and takes over as camp leader.

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The Greatest films of all time: 85. Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001) (Canada)


The Greatest films of all time: 84. Amores Perros (2000)/21 Grams (2003)/Babel (2006) (Mexico/USA/Japan)

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Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu of Mexico made the above three films that are considered by some a “Trilogy of Death”, each three years apart. At age 37 in his debut feature, “Amores Perros” he was as a thunder known to the world, specially the western society and Hollywood that invested in his second part of the trilogy, “21 grams” in 2003, employing popular American cast, Sean Penn, Naomi Watts and only a Mexican, Benicio del Toro with a budget of $20 million vs. the meager Mexican budget of $ 2.4 million for Amores Perros, the film made a sales profit 3 times more of $60 million. Then in third part of trilogy “Babel” in 2006 again invested by Hollywood and Japanese with again $20 million budget, starring famous American and Japanese cast, Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Koji Yakuso and Rinko Kikuchi, and the only Mexican Gael Garcia Bernal, the film made almost 7 times sales profit of $135 million.    

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Although there is a theme of death in three films of Inarritu’s trilogy, and the first part title in original Mexican is translated as “Love’s a Bitch”, each three parts and the whole trilogy has a more important central theme that is “Life’s a Bitch” or in a better word, “Life is unfair”. So instead of one film, all Innaritu’s trilogy has been included in our list of the greatest films of all time as one film due to this strong philosophical, sociological or psychological theme or an unfortunate fact of life. The three films were put together here also as none alone could reach the greatest level, but all together did. Moreover each of the above three films are in fact a trilogy or three parts or three folded in itself. In Amores Perros, the lives of three couples Octavio and Susana, Daniel and Valeria, & El Chive and Maru are interconnected with a car crash and also a dog. In 21 Grams, again the lives of three characters, Jack, Paul and Cristina are tied together by a hit-and-run car accident and drug addiction. In the final chapter of the trilogy, Babel, Innaritu goes beyond a specific geographical zone and in this time the interlink of the main theme is not just between characters, but different nationalities in Morocco, US/Mexico, and Japan, and between the three couple characters of Susan and Richards, Amelia and Santiago, Chieko and Yasujiro Wataya.

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As alluded to the Innaritu’s trilogy that could be called “Life’s a Bitch” or “Life’s unfair” has a pessimistic but in a way realistic view on life that accident and sudden death happens unfairly to some universally around the world. In certain of these situations, people or victims may interconnect, but even if no there is no physical or personal connection, these kinds of misfortunes are universals and shared by the a common human soul. No filmmakers has depicted this common human theme in his or her work on the screen and Innaritu deserves the three films of his trilogy to be part of the greatest films of all time. While each film alone cannot satisfy the greatest films of all time ranking, due to some shortcomings and loose weaving between the parts in each film, altogether the philosophical or fact of life point attempted by Innaritu over a 6 years period is well taken and respected. In the following each films of Innaritu’s trilogy will be briefly discussed around the main theme of the unfairness of life and in conclusion all three will be weaved together in one common theme as Innaritu aimed to show so.


Amores Perros (2000):

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The Greatest films of all time: 84. Amores Perros (2000)/21 Grams (2003)/Babel (2006) (Mexico/USA/Japan)


The Greatest films of all time: 83.Children of Heaven (1997) (Iran)

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In 1980’s at the same time of the revival of Italian cinema and the renaissance in Spanish cinema, a new wave of cinema in a third world country took the world by surprise. Nourished by its history long rich culture and literature specially in poetry and spiritualism, the cinema in Iran took a huge leap in this modern visual art that has survived well to this very day. Adapting Hollywood films from 1930s, the cinema in Iran maintained a commercial nature of depicting storytelling until in the mid to late 1960s when the influence of French Avant Garde and Italian Neo-realism influenced the intellectuals in Iran to use the film medium for their ideology and cultural expressions. Davoud Mollapour with “The husband of Ahoo Khanoom” in 1968, Masoud Kimiai with “Kaiser” and Dariush Mehrjui with “The Cow” revolutionized the commercial films in Iran.

But it was not until the opening of “Institute for the intellectual development of children and adolescents” in 1965 that the modern arts including cinema formally took on the new wave movement and was used as an intellectual and artistic medium of expression. From this institute great filmmakers such as Abbas Kiarostami, Amir Naderi, Bahram Beyzai, Majid Majidi, and Sohrab Shahid-Saless rose to the world level of great filmmakers and at times surpassed their European contemporaries whom they were influenced by. From this new wave of filmmakers, Abbas Kiarostami took the spiritual, poetic and intellectual side with his major film experience in “The Experience” in 1973, then continued his line of work with “The Traveller” driving around Iran for exploration and perhaps self-discovery, that pleased the western critics immensely. At the same time Bahram Bayzai took on a middle ground and delved into the contemporary Persian culture, suppressed and depressed to the current level after centuries of invasions and occupations in “Ragbar” in 1972 and “Sooteh-Delan” in 1978. Sohrab Shahid-Saless influenced mostly by the French Avant Garde and rich spiritual Persian poetry depicted his culture with his freeze frames and slow camera moves in “A Simple Event” in 1973 and “Still Life” in 1975. Amir Naderi followed Italian neorealism and specifically De Sica to depict the most realistic, unspoiled reality of his culture at least of the poor struggling class with “Harmonica” in 1973 and “The Runner” in 1985.

Growing in “Institute for the intellectual development of children and adolescents” some of these filmmakers having had to make films for or about children, their works were enriched with the sentiments and innocence of this age group. “Harmonica” and “The Runner” by Naderi, “Bashu, the little stranger” by Baizaei, “Where is the Friend’s House?” by Kiarostami, and “The White Balloon” by Jafar Panahi were earlier such depictions. The attention of the world of cinema specially in Europe and Cannes Film Festival had already been absorbed by such rich and novel works from a new line of pure cinema just before “Children of Heaven” of Majid Mojidi hit the screens worldwide. The purity, simplicity and innocence of the lives in the film was an awakening and inspiration for the rest of global cinema that longed to see another neo-realistic work since “Bicycle Thieves” of De Sica. The attention was so high and far as North America where the film was the first Iranian film to be nominated for the best foreign language film in 1999 to lose only to “Life is beautiful” of Roberto Bengini. But the film was the first Persian film to win the Newport Film Festival, the Warsaw International Film Festival, and the Singapore International Film Festival, Montreal Film Festival and to compete for the Grand prize at the American Film Institute’s Festival in 1997.  

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From Earth to Heaven:

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The Greatest films of all time: 83.Children of Heaven (1997) (Iran)


The Greatest films of all time: 82. Life is Beautiful (1997) (Italy)

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Roberto Benigni, an Italian comedy actor and filmmaker with his “Life is Beautiful” in 1997 that was released almost a year later than Italy in US, proved to be a genius like his master Charlie Chaplin. Naturally a born comedian in his masterpiece, he uses humor and irony to tell a story of love, sacrifice and inhumanity of Nazis in the World war II to enlighten his own nation whose fascist government of Mussolini was on the devil axis and a partner in the big crime. Despite the universal accolade of the film by critics and the public worldwide, there were a few who did not understand the film and its impact on the Italian mentality then and later in recognition of the atrocities of the fascists and Nazis on Jews even in their native country, ending in over 7,000 loss of lives.


In fact Benigni was smart to consult, from the start of the film and even writing the script, with the Jewish-Italian historian and scholar, Marcello Pezzetti who had travelled over 250 times to Auschwitz and interviewed hundreds of holocaust survivors over the years. He even attended with Pezzetti a full-immersion holocaust history course to acquire more knowledge of the most tragic inhumanity incident of our modern time. Benigni had also one of the real holocaust survivor, Rubino Romeo Salmoni whose memoir “In the End, I Beat Hitler” was a main inspiration for the film, on the set as another consultant. As in the film that Guido (Roberto Benigni) who sacrifices his own life for the survival of his young son Giosue or Joshua (Giorgio Cantarini), Benigni preferred that ending opposed to the death of his son per Pezzetti’s suggestion.


Life is or was Beautiful:

While half of the film is a love story with an uninterrupted comic moments created solely by Benigni himself who like Chaplin not just acted, but directed and co-wrote the script, is a beautiful funny story of love, the second half is tragic, with still ongoing comic moments for the survival in the concentration camp. So the beautiful life of two lovers that produced a beautiful boy before the Nazis occupation of Italy after the country surrender to the allies in 1943, is lost to the racial discrimination and ends in a concentration camp. For the survival of the spirit and life of his little son, Guido continues with his magical and fantasy story making to convince him believing the camp is a contest for the hardest working participant (his father) to collect one thousand points to win a tank. At the end Guiod sacrifices his own life to rescue his son, hiding him in a safe outside to just come out the next morning when all are gone to see his prize tank.

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Arriving with his friend to the small town of Arezzo in Tuscany to work in his uncle’s restaurant until he applies for a permit to open a bookstore, Guido runs into Dora (Nicoletta Braschi, Benigni’s real wife) whom he falls in love right away. With constant comic actions and well written and acted script mostly by one man, Benigni as Guido, he runs a few more times accidentally to Dora whom he calls her princess. Meanwhile he waits a German doctor who’s obsessed with riddles and soon interested in Guido who solves his riddles easily and gave him hard ones to solve. He also serves lunch once to an inspector who’s visiting the school where Dora teaches, so he takes the opportunity to pretend to be the inspector, arriving to the school wearing an Italian flag. In one of the funniest scenes of the film, when he is asked to lecture about the superiority of the Italian race to the young students, he jumps on a desk and shows himself and different parts of his body including his earlobes and belly buttons as the perfect examples of a superior race. Having all the scene improvised, Benigni makes the film a mockery of racism, in the manner Chaplin did in “The Great Dictator”.


Another funny but thoughtful moment of the film is Guido using Schopenhauer will power’s philosophy to influence Dora to fall in love with him by his hand movements as if to hypnotize her. Despite a few degrading criticism of labeling Benigni as a clown, addressing Schopenhauer’s philosophy of influence on others that impacted Nietzsche whose philosophy of “Will to Power” and “Ubermensch” or “Superman” was an influence on Hitler is an example of his genius in mockery of extreme ideologies that once and again have led to humans’ misery. Finally and at the end of the first happy half of the film, Guido when he works as a waiter in Dora’s engagement party to a rich local, he steals her on his uncle’s horse that is painted green and written on some anti-semitic remarks.

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The Greatest films of all time: 82. Life is Beautiful (1997) (Italy)


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