Surprises abound in Sight and Sound critics’ ballot of best movies ever made


A movie directed by a girl has damaged the glass ceiling of the Sight and Sound poll of greatest films ever made, a once-every-10-year survey of critics who this yr have positioned Belgian filmmaker Chantal Akerman’s 1975 “Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Brussels,” the story of a girl whose each day routine contains working as a prostitute, at No. 1.

For the previous 60 years, the ballot, performed by the British Film Institute, has been topped both by Orson Welles’ “Citizen Kane” or, extra not too long ago, Alfred Hitchcock’s “Vertigo.” Those movies slipped to No. 3 and No. 2, respectively. (The very first ballot, in 1952, featured Vittorio De Sica’s neo-realist drama “Bicycle Thieves” at No. 1.)  

Akerman, whose “News from Home” additionally made the record, is one among a number of feminine administrators whose work gained floor on this yr’s ballot, together with movies by Jane Campion (“The Piano”), Vera Chytilová (“Daisies”), Julie Dash (“Daughters of the Dust”), Claire Denis (“Beau travail”), Maya Deren (co-director of “Meshes of the Afternoon”), Barbara Loden (“Wanda”), Céline Sciamma (“Portrait of a Lady on Fire”), and Agnès Varda (“Cléo from 5 to 7,” “The Gleaners and I”).

Delphine Seyrig as a girl whose each day routine contains work as a prostitute in Chantal Akerman’s “Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Brussels.”

Criterion Collection

There has additionally been a rise in illustration of labor by Black filmmakers, with seven titles within the Top 100 — up from one within the final ballot. They embrace Charles Burnett’s “Killer of Sheep,” Barry Jenkins’ “Moonlight,” Spike Lee’s “Do the Right Thing,” Jordan Peele’s “Get Out,” Djibril Diop Mambéty’s “Touki Bouki,” Ousmane Sembène’s “Black Girl,” and Julie Dash’s “Daughters of the Dust.”

Alex Hibbert and Mahershala Ali in “Moonlight.”


The critics’ ballot options a few of the most memorable work of such administrators as Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese, Jean Renoir, Jean Luc Godard, Ingmar Bergman, David Lynch, Yasujiro Ozu, John Ford and Akira Kurosawa. More than 1,600 critics from world wide contributed their Top 10 movie lists, voting for greater than 4,000 movies total.  

New titles on the record this yr embrace Kubrick’s “The Shining,” Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite,” and two movies by Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki: “Spirited Away” and “My Neighbor Totoro.” 

With many additions to the most recent ballot outcomes, a number of classics have this time been bumped out of the Top 100, together with Renoir’s “Grand Illusion,” Welles’ “The Magnificent Ambersons” and “Touch of Evil,” David Lean’s “Lawrence of Arabia,” Werner Herzog’s “Aguirre, Wrath of God,” Roman Polanski’s “Chinatown,” Coppola’s “The Godfather Part II,” Robert Altman’s “Nashville,” and Scorsese’s “Raging Bull.” There are not any movies by Terence Malick, Paul Thomas Anderson, Eric Rohmer, Luis Bunuel or Howard Hawks.

But a parallel Sight and Sound ballot of administrators revealed a considerably totally different lineup of best movies, with Stanley Kubrick’s “2001: A Space Odyssey” taking the No. 1 place. In addition to retaining a few of the movies that the critics had rejected — together with “Grand Illusion,” “The Magnificent Ambersons,” “Touch of Evil,” “Lawrence of Arabia,” “Chinatown,” “The Godfather Part II,” and “Raging Bull” — the administrators surveyed additionally noticed match to incorporate Kubrick’s “Dr. Strangelove,” Lynch’s “Eraserhead,” and Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws.”

Keir Dullea in “2001: A Space Odyssey.”

Warner Brothers

Critics’ Greatest Films of All Time (Top 20)

  1. “Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles” (Chantal Akerman, 1975)

2. “Vertigo” (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)

3. “Citizen Kane” (Orson Welles, 1941)

4. “Tokyo Story” (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953)

5. “In the Mood for Love” (Wong Kar-wai, 2001)

6. “2001: A Space Odyssey” (Stanley Kubrick, 1968)

7. “Beau travail” (Claire Denis, 1998)

8. “Mulholland Dr.” (David Lynch, 2001)

9. “Man with a Movie Camera” (Dziga Vertov,1929)

10. “Singin’ in the Rain” (Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly, 1951)

11. “Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans” (F.W. Murnau, 1927)

12. “The Godfather” (Francis Ford Coppola, 1972)

13. “La Règle du jeu” (Jean Renoir, 1939)

14. “Cléo from 5 to 7” (Agnès Varda, 1962)

15. “The Searchers” (John Ford, 1956) 

16. “Meshes of the Afternoon” (Maya Deren and Alexander Hammid, 1943)

17. “Close-Up” (Abbas Kiarostami, 1989)

18. “Persona” (Ingmar Bergman, 1966)

19. “Apocalypse Now” (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979)

20. “Seven Samurai” (Akira Kurosawa, 1954) 

For the complete critics’ record go to Sight and Sound.

Directors’ Greatest Films of All Time (Top 20)

  1. “2001: A Space Odyssey” (Stanley Kubrick 1968)

2. “Citizen Kane” (Orson Welles, 1941)

3. “The Godfather” (Francis Ford Coppola, 1972)

4 . “Tokyo Story” (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953)

4 (tie). “Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles” (Chantal Akerman, 1975)

6. “Vertigo” (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)

6 (tie). “8½” (Federico Fellini, 1963)

8. “Mirror” (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1975)

9. “Persona” (Ingmar Bergman, 1966)

9 (tie). “In the Mood for Love” (Hong Kar Wai, 2000)

9 (tie). “Close Up” (Abbas Kiarostami, 1989)

12. “Taxi Driver”(Martin Scorsese, 1976)

12 (tie). “Barry Lyndon” (Stanley Kubrick, 1975)

14. “Beau travail” (Claire Denis, 1998)

14 (tie). “Seven Samurai” (Akira Kurosawa, 1954)

14 (tie). “A bout de souffle (Breathless)” (Jean-Luc Godard, 1960)

14 (tie). “Stalker” (Andrei Tarkosvsky, 1979)

18. “Apocalypse Now” (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979)

19. “A Woman Under the Influence” (John Cassavetes, 1974)

20. “Rashomon” (Akira Kurosawa, 1950).

For the complete administrators’ record go to Sight and Sound.


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