The 100 best movies of all time

by radu-rusanu | created - 22 Sep 2013 | updated - 17 Apr 2014 | Public

It's just my opinion. If you don't agree, don't hate.

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1. Smoke (1995)

R | 112 min | Comedy, Drama

70 Metascore

A Brooklyn smoke shop is the center of neighborhood activity, and the stories of its customers.

Directors: Wayne Wang, Paul Auster | Stars: Harvey Keitel, William Hurt, Giancarlo Esposito, José Zúñiga

Votes: 30,189 | Gross: $8.35M

I could watch this movie every week. The script is by award winning writer and novelist Paul Auster. A must-see if you like post-noir movies and independent cinema!

2. Kramer vs. Kramer (1979)

PG | 105 min | Drama

77 Metascore

Ted Kramer's wife leaves her husband, allowing for a lost bond to be rediscovered between Ted and his son, Billy. But a heated custody battle ensues over the divorced couple's son, deepening the wounds left by the separation.

Director: Robert Benton | Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Meryl Streep, Jane Alexander, Justin Henry

Votes: 111,038 | Gross: $106.26M

Dustin Hofmann's a damn good actor. This is, in my opinion, his best performance.

3. The Godfather (1972)

R | 175 min | Crime, Drama

100 Metascore

The aging patriarch of an organized crime dynasty transfers control of his clandestine empire to his reluctant son.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Diane Keaton

Votes: 1,338,563 | Gross: $134.97M

This movie can be interpreted in so many ways. All actors delivered perfect performances, even though, for most of them, it was at the beginning of their careers. You'll see the other two parts later on, don't worry.

4. Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989)

PG-13 | 104 min | Comedy, Drama

77 Metascore

An ophthalmologist's mistress threatens to reveal their affair to his wife while a married documentary filmmaker is infatuated with another woman.

Director: Woody Allen | Stars: Martin Landau, Woody Allen, Bill Bernstein, Claire Bloom

Votes: 47,910 | Gross: $18.25M

Very underrated classic, I'd say, Allen's best movie.

5. Psycho (1960)

R | 109 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

97 Metascore

A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh, Vera Miles, John Gavin

Votes: 497,201 | Gross: $32.00M

I still get scared every time Vera Miles walks down the stairs into the basement at the Bates house. Hitchcock is a timeless genius. Better than I expected.

6. Soylent Green (1973)

PG | 97 min | Crime, Mystery, Sci-Fi

66 Metascore

In the world ravaged by the greenhouse effect and overpopulation, an NYPD detective investigates the murder of a big company CEO.

Director: Richard Fleischer | Stars: Charlton Heston, Edward G. Robinson, Leigh Taylor-Young, Chuck Connors

Votes: 49,923

A very strong but forgotten movie, back from the time before Star Wars, when Science Fiction was intelligent.

7. Wrong Move (1975)

Not Rated | 103 min | Drama

A writer goes on a road trip across West Germany with a group of eclectic people he meets along the way.

Director: Wim Wenders | Stars: Rüdiger Vogler, Hanna Schygulla, Hans Christian Blech, Nastassja Kinski

Votes: 2,072

If you like art movies, this movie will let you with your mouth wide open. The dialogues are amazing, the camera shots are indescribably good, you don't see geniuses like Wenders in Hollywood.

8. Pulp Fiction (1994)

R | 154 min | Crime, Drama

94 Metascore

The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis

Votes: 1,529,399 | Gross: $107.93M

This movie was not at all what I expected, being the first Tarantino film I'd ever seen. I expected a serious movie and up until the part, where Christopher Walken makes a subtle, Tarantino-style dysentery joke, I thought it was. I recommend this is the first Tarantino film you watch. You'll be stunned by how crazy and yet smart a person can be.

9. The Shining (1980)

R | 146 min | Drama, Horror

63 Metascore

A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd, Scatman Crothers

Votes: 720,624 | Gross: $44.02M

This is from the intellectual side of horror, psychological horror. If you expect to see heads being cut and guts spilled across the floor, walk away. This attacks your nerve much deeper.

10. Citizen Kane (1941)

PG | 119 min | Drama, Mystery

100 Metascore

Following the death of a publishing tycoon, news reporters scramble to discover the meaning of his final utterance.

Director: Orson Welles | Stars: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Dorothy Comingore, Agnes Moorehead

Votes: 343,509 | Gross: $1.59M

Another timeless classic. This is, I think Orson Welles first movie, and it blew my mind.

11. Schindler's List (1993)

R | 195 min | Biography, Drama, History

93 Metascore

In German-occupied Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazi Germans.

Director: Steven Spielberg | Stars: Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley, Caroline Goodall

Votes: 1,008,705 | Gross: $96.07M

Arguably the best holocaust movie ever made. It is disappointing how, apart from this, and maybe Munich, Spielberg only made mediocre mainstream low-culture movies. But regarding this film, there is nothing bad to be said about it.

12. The Seventh Seal (1957)

Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Fantasy

A man seeks answers about life, death, and the existence of God as he plays chess against the Grim Reaper during the Black Plague.

Director: Ingmar Bergman | Stars: Max von Sydow, Gunnar Björnstrand, Bengt Ekerot, Nils Poppe

Votes: 133,179

This movie is very hard to understand, and you have to watch it about 2-3 times to really let it get to you. Bergman is unarguably a genius and this is, in my opinion, his best film.

13. Midnight Cowboy (1969)

R | 113 min | Drama

79 Metascore

A naive hustler travels from Texas to New York City to seek personal fortune but, in the process, finds himself a new friend.

Director: John Schlesinger | Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Jon Voight, Sylvia Miles, John McGiver

Votes: 85,480 | Gross: $44.79M

I was surprised to see, that this movie had less than 8 points on IMDb. I expected it to be at least a good 8.5. Another perfect performance by Dustin Hoffman, and after I found out, Jon Voight was actually a New Yorker, I had to rewatch the film to chek for loopholes. I simply couldn't believe that someone could act so well.

14. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)

R | 133 min | Drama

80 Metascore

A criminal pleads insanity after getting into trouble again and once in the mental institution rebels against the oppressive nurse and rallies up the scared patients.

Director: Milos Forman | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman, Peter Brocco

Votes: 779,418 | Gross: $112.00M

I saw this for the first time, when I was 12 and I understood it. Please mark that I am not that smart. I have a slightly above-average IQ, but I'm no genius. This movie touches everyone between the ages of 12 and 100, Nicholson practically gave the world the finger with his performance in this.

15. Manhattan (1979)

R | 96 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

83 Metascore

The life of a divorced television writer dating a teenage girl is further complicated when he falls in love with his best friend's mistress.

Director: Woody Allen | Stars: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, Mariel Hemingway, Michael Murphy

Votes: 116,763 | Gross: $45.70M

Another timeless Allen classic, no one makes movies like this anymore. Unfortunately, this genre and era is forever lost, and we can only relive it through movies and books, and this one's a perfect example. It simply makes me happy everytime I see it.

16. Down by Law (1986)

R | 107 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

75 Metascore

Two innocent people are arrested. An interesting third person, with broken English, joins them in their cell. On his idea, they decide to escape from the prison. Their journey is the rest of the movie.

Director: Jim Jarmusch | Stars: Tom Waits, John Lurie, Roberto Benigni, Nicoletta Braschi

Votes: 41,041 | Gross: $1.44M

Blues musicians Tom Waits and John Lurie get joined together with italian comedy sensation Roberto Begnini in this work of art by Jim Jarmusch. Words can't describe it.

17. The Pianist (2002)

R | 150 min | Biography, Drama, Music

85 Metascore

A Polish Jewish musician struggles to survive the destruction of the Warsaw ghetto of World War II.

Director: Roman Polanski | Stars: Adrien Brody, Thomas Kretschmann, Frank Finlay, Emilia Fox

Votes: 591,887 | Gross: $32.57M

Another holocaust movie, this time by the unique Roman Polanski. At the end of the movie, it said that it was based on true facts, and I just couldn't believe it. Since then, I read the book and I bought a CD with recordings of Wladislaw Szpilman. A must-see.

18. Metropolis (1927)

Not Rated | 153 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

98 Metascore

In a futuristic city sharply divided between the working class and the city planners, the son of the city's mastermind falls in love with a working class prophet who predicts the coming of a savior to mediate their differences.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Brigitte Helm, Alfred Abel, Gustav Fröhlich, Rudolf Klein-Rogge

Votes: 133,623 | Gross: $0.03M

The best mute film ever made. Fritz Lang is a hero of German impressionism, his movies take us away to a nice place, away from this cold world. Timeless!

19. The Godfather: Part II (1974)

R | 202 min | Crime, Drama

85 Metascore

The early life and career of Vito Corleone in 1920s New York City is portrayed, while his son, Michael, expands and tightens his grip on the family crime syndicate.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton

Votes: 926,085 | Gross: $57.30M

Probably the best sequel in the history of cinema. I expected it to be not half as good as the first one, but I was wrong. Worth to sit through.

20. The Godfather: Part III (1990)

R | 162 min | Crime, Drama

60 Metascore

In the midst of trying to legitimize his business dealings in New York City and Italy in 1979, aging Mafia Don Michael Corleone seeks to avow for his sins, while taking his nephew Vincent Mancini under his wing.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Al Pacino, Diane Keaton, Andy Garcia, Talia Shire

Votes: 309,347 | Gross: $66.67M

In some ways, this part was even better than the other two, because it was made at the peak of New Hollywood. It is a duty for movie enthusiasts to watch all three parts in consecutive nights every two or three months.

21. Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

PG | 91 min | Adventure, Comedy, Fantasy

93 Metascore

King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table embark on a surreal, low-budget search for the Holy Grail, encountering many, very silly obstacles.

Directors: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones | Stars: Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam

Votes: 434,799 | Gross: $1.23M

We are the knights, who say NI!

22. Lisbon Story (1994)

PG | 100 min | Drama, Music

The director Friedrich Monroe has trouble with finishing a silent b&w movie about Lisbon. He calls his friend, the sound engineer Phillip Winter, for help. As Winter arrives Lisbon weeks ... See full summary »

Director: Wim Wenders | Stars: Rüdiger Vogler, Patrick Bauchau, Vasco Sequeira, Canto e Castro

Votes: 3,699

This movie may not be for everyone, but it sure as hell was for me. The last movie Wenders made that was worth watching.

23. Vertigo (1958)

PG | 128 min | Mystery, Romance, Thriller

A San Francisco detective suffering from acrophobia investigates the strange activities of an old friend's wife, all the while becoming dangerously obsessed with her.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: James Stewart, Kim Novak, Barbara Bel Geddes, Tom Helmore

Votes: 297,860 | Gross: $3.20M

When I first saw this, I didn't understand it at all. It's one of those movies, that takes 2-3 viewings to really comprehend. I'm not gonna spoil the story for you, but you'll learn to like it, I promise.

24. The Graduate (1967)

PG | 106 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

77 Metascore

A disillusioned college graduate finds himself torn between his older lover and her daughter.

Director: Mike Nichols | Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Anne Bancroft, Katharine Ross, William Daniels

Votes: 228,695 | Gross: $104.95M

Another one of these movies, way ahead of its time. A comforting comedy, with a nice soundtrack, Dustin Hoffman again, delivered the best performance, it's much better than all those stupid mainstream comedy flicks from nowadays. A classic.

25. Dog Day Afternoon (1975)

R | 125 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

86 Metascore

A man robs a bank to pay for his lover's operation; it turns into a hostage situation and a media circus.

Director: Sidney Lumet | Stars: Al Pacino, John Cazale, Penelope Allen, Sully Boyar

Votes: 209,184 | Gross: $50.00M

If you think you know Al Pacino, you don't! Not before you've seen this one. Very remarkable performance by such a good actor.

26. American History X (1998)

R | 119 min | Crime, Drama

62 Metascore

A former neo-nazi skinhead tries to prevent his younger brother from going down the same wrong path that he did.

Director: Tony Kaye | Stars: Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly D'Angelo, Jennifer Lien

Votes: 896,892 | Gross: $6.72M

A serious drama with a not-so-happy ending. Strong message, good acting...enough to be on this list.

27. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

R | 136 min | Crime, Drama, Sci-Fi

78 Metascore

In the future, a sadistic gang leader is imprisoned and volunteers for a conduct-aversion experiment, but it doesn't go as planned.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke

Votes: 646,506

Great Bloshy Yarblockos! Few people actually understand the message of this film, they just watch it for the ultra-violence and the in-out-in-out. But those who do understand it get why this is such a masterpiece.

28. Stalker (1979)

Not Rated | 162 min | Drama, Sci-Fi

A guide leads two men through an area known as the Zone to find a room that grants wishes.

Director: Andrei Tarkovsky | Stars: Alisa Freyndlikh, Aleksandr Kaydanovskiy, Anatoliy Solonitsyn, Nikolay Grinko

Votes: 88,890 | Gross: $0.23M

Tarkovsky's best, without a doubt. Was a drag to watch it at first, but I really grew into it.