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100+

Updated: Mar 13

A Rich List of Cinema


This evolving selection presents over 100 years of cinema via my favourite films. The challenge was to select a single entry for each year from 1920 to the present day. Most film choices were a no-brainer, others I’m sure will change as I continue to discover some blindspots and hidden gems. However, some years made it practically impossible to choose. Ahh... the joy of lists.


To begin at the beginning... 


1920 is a year that presents a choice between the inception of the Hollywood action/adventure movie in Fred Niblo’s The Mark of Zorro vs. Robert Wiene’s The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari; a seminal work of German Expressionism that sparked what we now see as psychological horror. These are two contrasting works; the choice made from which film I have seen the most, despite how much more entertaining another film may be. 1955 is crucial in the birth of the ‘teenager’, Nicholas Ray’s Rebel Without a Cause and Richard Brooks’ Blackboard Jungle alone making for a difficult set to choose from... but, in the end, for me, it always comes back to Charles Laughton’s American Gothic masterpiece Night of the Hunter. To be honest 1987 is a flip of the coin and could just as easily have been John McTiernan’s Predator over Paul Verhoeven’s Robocop.


Wherever these selections sit (for now), I hope you find some new films to watch and maybe your own favourites that match.

 

 

1920s

 

(1920) The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari

Director(s): Robert Wiene

Germany

 

(1921) The Kid

Director(s): Charlie Chaplin

United States

 

(1922) Häxan

Director(s): Benjamin Christensen

Sweden

 

(1923) Safety Last!

Director(s): Fred C. Newmeyer, Sam Taylor

United States

 

(1924) Sherlock Jr.

Director(s): Buster Keaton

United States

 

(1925) Battleship Potemkin

Director(s): Sergei Eisenstein

Soviet Union

 

(1926) Faust

Director(s): F. W. Murnau

Germany

 

(1927) Wings *

Director(s): William A. Wellman

United States

 

(1928) The Man Who Laughs

Director(s): Paul Leni

United States

 

(1929) Diary of a Lost Girl

Director(s): G. W. Pabst

Germany

 

1930s

 

(1930) All Quiet on the Western Front

Director(s): Lewis Milestone

United States

 

(1931) M

Director(s): Fritz Lang

Germany

 

(1932) Freaks

Director(s): Tod Browning

United States

 

(1933) King Kong

Director(s): Merian C. Cooper, Ernest B. Schoedsack

United States

 

(1934) Of Human Bondage

Director(s): John Cromwell

United States

 

(1935) Ruggles of Red Gap 

Director(s): Leo McCarey

United States

 

(1936) The Charge of the Light Brigade

Director(s): Michael Curtiz

United States

 

(1937) Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Director(s): David Hand, Perce Pearce, William Cottrell, Larry Morey, Wilfred Jackson, Ben Sharpsteen

United States

 

(1938) Angels with Dirty Faces

Director(s): Michael Curtiz

United States

 

(1939) The Hunchback of Notre Dame *

Director(s): William Dieterle

United States

 

1940s

 

(1940) Rebecca

Director(s): Alfred Hitchcock

United States

 

(1941) The Wolf Man

Director(s): George Waggner

United States

 

(1942) Cat People

Director(s): Jacques Tourneur

United States

 

(1943) Heaven Can Wait

Director(s): Ernst Lubitsch

United States

 

(1944) Double Indemnity

Director(s): Billy Wilder

United States

 

(1945) Leave Her to Heaven *

Director(s): John M. Stahl

United States

 

(1946) Gilda

Director(s): Charles Vidor

United States

 

(1947) Out of the Past

Director(s): Jacques Tourneur

United States

 

(1948) The Snake Pit

Director(s): Anatole Litvak

United States

 

(1949) Stray Dog

Director(s): Akira Kurosawa

Japan

 

1950s

 

(1950) Sunset Boulevard

Director(s): Billy Wilder

United States

 

(1951) On Dangerous Ground

Director(s): Nicholas Ray, Ida Lupino

United States

 

(1952) The Bad and the Beautiful

Director(s): Vincente Minnelli

United States

 

(1953) Shane

Director(s): George Stevens

United States

 

(1954) On the Waterfront *

Director(s): Elia Kazan

United States

 

(1955) The Night of the Hunter

Director(s): Charles Laughton

United States

 

(1956) Moby Dick

Director(s): John Huston

United States

 

(1957) 12 Angry Men

Director(s): Sidney Lumet

United States

 

(1958) The Vikings

Director(s): Richard Fleischer

United States

 

(1959) Some Like it Hot

Director(s): Billy Wilder

United States

 

1960s

 

(1960) Saturday Night and Sunday Morning

Director(s): Karel Reisz

United Kingdom

 

(1961) Yojimbo

Director(s): Akira Kurosawa

Japan

 

(1962) Harakiri *

Director(s): Masaki Kobayashi

Japan

 

(1963) The Great Escape

Director(s): John Sturges

United States

 

(1964) Kwaidan

Director(s): Masaki Kobayashi

Japan

 

(1965) The Naked Prey

Director(s): Cornel Wilde

United States

 

(1966) Alfie

Director(s): Lewis Gilbert

United Kingdom

 

(1967) Le Samouraï

Director(s): Jean-Pierre Melville

France / Italy

 

(1968) Once Upon a Time in the West

Director(s): Sergio Leone

Italy / United States

 

(1969) Midnight Cowboy

Director(s): John Schlesinger

United States

 

1970s

 

(1970) Little Big Man

Director(s): Arthur Penn

United States

 

(1971) Wake in Fright

Director(s): Ted Kotcheff

Australia

 

(1972) Silent Running

Director(s): Douglas Trumbull

United States

 

(1973) Fantastic Planet

Director(s): René Laloux

France / Czechoslovakia

 

(1974) Chinatown

Director(s): Roman Polanski

United States

 

(1975) Jaws *

Director(s): Steven Spielberg

United States

 

(1976) Taxi Driver

Director(s): Martin Scorsese

United States

 

(1977) Sorcerer

Director(s): William Friedkin

United States

 

(1978) Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Director(s): Philip Kaufman

United States

 

(1979) Alien

Director(s): Ridley Scott

United States

 

1980s

 

(1980) The Elephant Man

Director(s): David Lynch

United States

 

(1981) Raiders of the Lost Ark

Director(s): Steven Spielberg

United States

 

(1982) The Thing *

Director(s): John Carpenter

United States

 

(1983) The Dead Zone

Director(s): David Cronenberg

United States

 

(1984) This is Spinal Tap

Director(s): Rob Reiner

United States

 

(1985) Witness

Director(s): Peter Weir

United States

 

(1986) The Fly

Director(s): David Cronenberg

United States

 

(1987) Robocop

Director(s): Paul Verhoeven

United States

 

(1988) Akira

Director(s): Katsuhiro Otomo

Japan

 

(1989) When Harry Met Sally...

Director(s): Rob Reiner

United States

 

1990s

 

(1990) Jacob’s Ladder *

Director(s): Adrian Lyne

United States

 

(1991) Terminator 2: Judgment Day

Director(s): James Cameron

United States

 

(1992) Candyman

Director(s): Bernard Rose

United States

 

(1993) Batman: Mask of the Phantasm

Director(s): Bruce Timm, Eric Radomski

United States

 

(1994) The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert 

Director(s): Stephan Elliott

Australia

 

(1995) Heat

Director(s): Michael Mann

United States

 

(1996) Trainspotting

Director(s): Danny Boyle

United Kingdom

 

(1997) L.A. Confidential

Director(s): Curtis Hanson

United States

 

(1998) The Thin Red Line

Director(s): Terrence Malick

United States

 

(1999) The Iron Giant

Director(s): Brad Bird

United States

 

2000s

 

(2000) Gladiator

Director(s): Ridley Scott

United States

 

(2001) Frailty

Director(s): Bill Paxton

United States

 

(2002) The Eye

Director(s): Danny Pang Phat, Oxide Pang Chun (the Pang Brothers)

Hong Kong / Singapore

 

(2003) The Last Samurai

Director(s): Edward Zwick

United States

 

(2004) Dead Man’s Shoes

Director(s): Shane Meadows

United Kingdom

 

(2005) The Descent

Director(s): Neil Marshall

United Kingdom

 

(2006) The Prestige

Director(s): Christopher Nolan

United States

 

(2007) Blade Runner: The Final Cut *

Director(s): Ridley Scott

United States

 

(2008) Lake Mungo

Director(s): Joel Anderson

Australia

 

(2009) District 9

Director(s): Neil Blomkamp

South Africa / New Zealand / United States

 

2010s

 

(2010) How to Train Your Dragon

Director(s): Dean DeBlois, Chris Sanders

United States

 

(2011) Crazy, Stupid, Love

Director(s): Glenn Ficarra, John Requa

United States

 

(2012) The Hunt

Director(s): Thomas Vinterberg

Denmark

 

(2013) Prisoners

Director(s): Denis Villeneuve

United States

 

(2014) Nightcrawler

Director(s): Dan Gilroy

United States

 

(2015) The Tiger *

Director(s): Park Hoon-jung

South Korea

 

(2016) The Red Turtle

Director(s): Michaël Dudok de Wit

France / Japan

 

(2017) War for the Planet of the Apes

Director(s): Matt Reeves

United States

 

(2018) Upgrade

Director(s): Leigh Whannell

Australia / United States

 

(2019) Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Director(s): Quentin Tarantino

United States

 

2020s

 

(2020) Alone

Director(s): John Hyams

United States

 

(2021) Dune: Part One *

Director(s): Denis Villeneuve

United States

 

(2022) Prey

Director(s): Dan Trachtenberg

United States

 

(2023) Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One 

Director(s): Christopher McQuarrie

United States

 

(2024) Dune: Part Two

Director(s): Denis Villeneuve

United States


* Film of the Decade.

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