The Movie Forums Top 100 of All-Time Refresh: Countdown

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Thursday Next's Avatar
I never could get the hang of Thursdays.
Well I thought it would take me a while to catch up with this thread and I was right.

So, 2001? Hmm. Maybe I should watch it again to see what the fuss is about.

Yeah, I went pretty heavy on the "warm fuzzies" types of films, the ones that are always close to my thoughts, even if I wouldn't try to sell anyone on them being among the greatest examples of the form. I was very Marie Kondo about it: does this film give you joy? Do you feel an impulse to smile, or does your mind race with analysis and interpretation when you think of it? That was the only way I could break the thousand-way tie between so many wonderful films.
This was absolutely my approach. How could I possibly pick just 25? I limited myself to ones I had seen multiple times, and then just went for 'oh but I have the poster of that film on my wall, that's the one I really looove, I cried three times so it must be the one' when the thousand way tie issue reared its head.


1. Cabaret (1972)
2. Lost in Translation (2003)
3. The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
4. Blade Runner (1982)
5. Sense and Sensibility (1995)
6. The Shape of Water (2017)
7. The Matrix (1999)
8. West Side Story (1961)
9. Inception (2010)
10. Brokeback Mountain (2005)
11. Brief Encounter (1945)
12. Cloud Atlas (2012)
13. 28 Days Later (2002)
14. Spirited Away (2001)
15. Plan B (2009)
16. Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)
17. The Terminator (1984)
18. Rope (1948)
19. Plein Soleil (Purple Noon) (1960)
20. Tank Girl (1995)
21. Quills (2000)
22. Sonatine (1993)
23. A Taste of Honey (1961)
24. Moulin Rouge! (2001)
25. Dangerous Liaisons (1988)


(So, yes, I did still have Sense and Sensibility, Quills, Sonatine and Moulin Rouge! on my list in 2020; still have a soft spot for that 2010 countdown )

The only films I have yet to see from this list are Rosemary's Baby and Enter the Dragon.



Despite being the #1 on the 2012 Sight & Sound poll, Vertigo doesn't even seem to be a very favourable choice (at least relative to it's current position) of avid cinephiles. Sometimes I think its appraised according to standards that the film seems to elude. Thematically its far more complex than what most people think of it to be - some sort of creepy obsession. But the manner in which obsession is presented simply cannot be summarised into a generic "whodunnit" theme, neither can its aesthetics be reduced to a narrative-driven structure. The questions that can be posed of Vertigo's reception are as follows. Did those who rate it less favourably do so because they couldn't understand the film? Conversely, did those who rate it highly do so precisely because they also do NOT understand the film? If its allure is what attracts/repels past and future film fans, then perhaps its the way in which Vertigo operates as a meta-level commentary about not just those who suffer from the medical condition but everyone who can't be guided by anything other than their hidden drives and impulses. In other words, the film is a metaphysical treatise about the nature of desire, one which comes the furthest in my esteem to tracing the intricacies of desire. I shall wait for next year's edition of the Sight & Sound poll, closely monitoring the film's effect on cinema.
I guess that 19th is very high. Does it matter if it is 1st in one poll and 19th in another? Both agree it is one of the greatest ever anyway. I personally found it to be one of Hitchcock's most entertaining movies and I don't like most Hitchcock movies, so the fact that I found it entertaining (like Psycho and the one with the birds) shows how broad its appeal is.

Tokyo Story on the other hand didn't make the top 100 here while it was 3rd in that poll and I like it much more than Vertigo. But it is not an English language film so it's understandable.



I guess that 19th is very high. Does it matter if it is 1st in one poll and 19th in another? Both agree it is one of the greatest ever anyway. I personally found it to be one of Hitchcock's most entertaining movies and I don't like most Hitchcock movies, so the fact that I found it entertaining (like Psycho and the one with the birds) shows how broad its appeal is.

Tokyo Story on the other hand didn't make the top 100 here while it was 3rd in that poll and I like it much more than Vertigo. But it is not an English language film so it's understandable.
I concede that it's still extremely popular. Actually my issue was less about its placement or ranking in lists but on its reception and justifications for situating it as such. Considering that Hitchcock has directed a vast body of suspense thrillers, Vertigo isn't exactly the most entertaining since many have complained that the plot-twist occurs halfway and then the film proceeds very "slowly" thereafter. Some have even tried to downplay its artistic significance by citing that they personally prefer Psycho, Rear Window or his black-and-white features. So there is still a divide between critics and popular opinion with regard to Vertigo and Hitchcock.



We've gone on holiday by mistake
Test audiences reacting to THAT scene in Alien. The guy in the top left is clearly a psychopath

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Since I was busy these past few months I stopped checking the list somewhere around 90.

Imagine my surprise when I realized had seen ALL of the Top 10.

And most of the higher ranked movies in fact.

So my taste is either very good or very generic...