It's finally here! After ten weeks of counting down the 100 best films of all time, Movie Fanatic is now excited to release its Top 10 list!
We've highlighted some amazing and well-deserved films, both modern and classic, hilarious and heartfelt. Our ten favorite films of all time cover some of the best directors and actors ever to work in Hollywood (and in one case, outside of it). Read back through the full list with #100-91, #90-81, #80-71, #70-61, #60-51, #50-41, #40-31, #30-21, and #20-11, then scroll down to view our final list. Let us know what you think in the comments section below!
10. 8 1/2
Frederico Fellini created a masterpiece of 1960’s avante-garde in his black-and-white comedy-drama 8 1/2. The highly-influential film tells the tale of a stalled Italian director struggling with difficulties in his professional and personal life. The dreamy flashback blur the lines between reality and fantasy in the Academy Award-winning movie, which went on to influence filmmakers like Woody Allen, Michel Gondry, David Cronenberg, and Charlie Kauffman.
There are movies with twists and there is the legendary twist in Chinatown. The film, from director Roman Polanski, stars Jack Nicholson as an investigator looking into corruption in Depression-era Los Angeles. Nicholson gets more than he bargained for in one of the best mystery movies of all-time. The Academy Award-winning screenplay possesses one of movies’ most famous lines, “Forget it Jake, it’s Chinatown.” Intrigued? Check out more Chinatown quotes.
8. The Graduate
The Graduate is brilliant in its understated simplicity. The quiet, beautifully shot film explores the human psyche in a way that few films before or since have been able to match. Themes of seduction, deception, innocence, boredom, and regret are examined by director Mike Nichols, with outstanding performances by a Anne Bancroft, Katharine Ross, and young Dustin Hoffman and a wonderful soundtrack by Simon & Garfunkel. The Graduate received six Oscar nominations after its 1967 release. Read through some The Graduate quotes to see why.
7. The Godfather
Francis Ford Coppola’s iconic gangster tale introduced the world to the crime family the Corleones. It’s hard to imagine the film without Marlon Brando, so it’s totally surprising that he had to be begged to do the role. The film swept the Oscars and gave way to a sequel that also swept the Oscars. To this day, it is considered the gangster movie and its pop culture presence is felt from that fateful wedding request to the horse head in the bed. Visit our The Godfather quotes for more on this iconic film.
6. Annie Hall
Woody Allen is surely the most prolific comedic filmmaker in the history of the medium. The frequency with witch he releases films of course leads to some duds, but masterpieces like Annie Hall prove Allen’s brilliance. A sweet, poignant, and absolutely hilarious look at love and relationships, Allen and his co-star Diane Keaton defined the romantic comedy genre from that point on. Annie Hall is easily one of the best comedies ever made, but its unique structure and classic aesthetic make it one of the best films of all time as well. Check out some unforgettable Annie Hall quotes to relive the magic.
5. Apocalypse Now
Coppola has his second film in our top 10 of all time with Apocalypse Now. Few films captured the feel of the Vietnam war as this 1979 film. Again, Coppola turned to Brando and again the veteran actor scored a role of a lifetime. Martin Sheen also established himself as a movie star with his turn as a conflicted soldier trying to solve a mystery. There are too many Apocalypse Now quotes to mention here, but we adore it when Robert Duvall says, “Charlie don’t surf!” and “I love the smell of napalm in the morning.”
4. 2001: A Space Odyssey
Stanley Kubrick’s sci-fi masterpiece was so impeccably made, that even to this day it is at the center of the biggest fake moon landing conspiracy theory. Kubrick’s journey from the dawn of man to the depths of space is perhaps the most visually stunning piece of film ever. Exploring themes of humanity, technology, extraterrestrial life, and the future of human evolution, the ominous story and unforgettable score only serve to further the film’s significance, and solidify Kubrick’s place near the top of the list of the best directors ever. Explore some 2001: A Space Odyssey quotes for more.
Alfred Hitchcock crafted so many masterpieces, but few have the timeless quality that Vertigo possesses. The master of suspense turned to one of his favorite actors to lead the film in Jimmy Stewart and the performer culled an incredible performance from some pretty intense psychological places. Nobody took human psychological issues and made them suspenseful on screen as Hitchcock did, and if you didn’t have Vertigo before seeing the film… after witnessing its majesty… you will become more susceptible than ever!
2. Taxi Driver
Robert DeNiro proved to moviegoers that he is one of the best actors ever with his role as Travis Bickle in Martin Scorsese’s 1976 psychological thriller Taxi Driver. Though Scorsese had made four films before it, Taxi Driver was America’s first major introduction to the director’s distinctive style. Telling the story of a discharged marine-turned taxi driver dealing with insomnia, Taxi Driver explores one man’s struggle with depression and psychosis in the bustling and often-times seedy streets of Manhattan. From the unforgettable “You talking to me?” scene, to the much-discussed ending, Taxi Driver achieved a deeply personal connection to a deeply disturbed man. The film also features wonderful performances from Albert Brooks, Cybill Shepherd and a young Jodie Foster. Check out our Taxi Driver quotes page for more.
After profiling 99 other fantastic movies, our number one film of all-time is a completely deserving choice: Casablanca. The film starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman continues to compel every new generation that comes along and it is because it is equal parts timeless romance and war drama whose themes could not be more universal, regardless of the era. Also proof of its best film of all-time quality, it does not matter how many times the film is watched, each time the story is laid out by screenwriters Julius and Philip Epstein, the viewer finds new themes that are as relevant today as they were in 1942. For more, check out our Casablanca quotes. And if you haven't seen this iconic movie, it's available now on an incredible 70th Anniversary Edition Blu-Ray!