Cahiers du Cinéma’s 100 Greatest Films (100 films pour une cinémathèque idéale)by Miquel-Angel | created - 08 Oct 2012 | updated - 08 Oct 2012 | Public
The 100 greatest films of all time by 78 French "critiques et historiens de cinéma"
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1. Citizen Kane (1941)
PG | 119 min | Drama, Mystery
Following the death of a publishing tycoon, news reporters scramble to discover the meaning of his final utterance.
Votes: 331,491 | Gross: $1.59M
2. The Night of the Hunter (1955)
Not Rated | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
A religious fanatic marries a gullible widow whose young children are reluctant to tell him where their real daddy hid $10,000 he'd stolen in a robbery.
3. The Rules of the Game (1939)
Not Rated | 110 min | Comedy, Drama
A bourgeois life in France at the onset of World War II, as the rich and their poor servants meet up at a French chateau.
4. Sunrise (1927)
Not Rated | 94 min | Drama, Romance
An allegorical tale about a man fighting the good and evil within him. Both sides are made flesh - one a sophisticated woman he is attracted to and the other his wife.
5. L'Atalante (1934)
Not Rated | 89 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Newly married couple Juliette and a ship captain Jean struggle through marriage as they travel on the L'atalante along with the captain's first mate Le père Jules and a cabin boy.
6. M (1931)
Not Rated | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
When the police in a German city are unable to catch a child-murderer, other criminals join in the manhunt.
Votes: 112,561 | Gross: $0.03M
7. Singin' in the Rain (1952)
G | 103 min | Comedy, Musical, Romance
A silent film production company and cast make a difficult transition to sound.
Votes: 174,484 | Gross: $8.82M
8. 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.
Votes: 285,416 | Gross: $3.20M
9. Children of Paradise (1945)
Not Rated | 189 min | Drama, Romance
The theatrical life of a beautiful courtesan and the four men who love her.
10. The Searchers (1956)
Not Rated | 119 min | Adventure, Drama, Western
An American Civil War veteran embarks on a journey to rescue his niece from the Comanches.
11. Greed (1924)
Not Rated | 140 min | Drama, Thriller, Western
The sudden fortune won from a lottery fans such destructive greed that it ruins the lives of the three people involved.
Votes: 7,667 | Gross: $0.16M
12. Rio Bravo (1959)
Not Rated | 141 min | Action, Drama, Western
A small-town sheriff in the American West enlists the help of a cripple, a drunk, and a young gunfighter in his efforts to hold in jail the brother of the local bad guy.
Votes: 47,173 | Gross: $12.54M
13. To Be or Not to Be (1942)
Not Rated | 99 min | Comedy, War
During the Nazi occupation of Poland, an acting troupe becomes embroiled in a Polish soldier's efforts to track down a German spy.
14. Tokyo Story (1953)
Not Rated | 136 min | Drama
An old couple visit their children and grandchildren in the city; but the children have little time for them.
15. Contempt (1963)
Not Rated | 102 min | Drama
Screenwriter Paul Javal's marriage to his wife Camille disintegrates during movie production as she spends time with the producer. Layered conflicts between art and business ensue.
Votes: 22,551 | Gross: $0.04M
16. Ugetsu (1953)
Not Rated | 96 min | Drama, Fantasy, War
A tale of ambition, family, love, and war set in the midst of the Japanese Civil Wars of the sixteenth century.
Votes: 16,313 | Gross: $0.01M
17. City Lights (1931)
G | 87 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
With the aid of a wealthy erratic tippler, a dewy-eyed tramp who has fallen in love with a sightless flower girl accumulates money to be able to help her medically.
Votes: 126,928 | Gross: $0.02M
18. The General (1926)
Not Rated | 67 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy
When Union spies steal an engineer's beloved locomotive, he pursues it single-handedly and straight through enemy lines.
19. Nosferatu (1922)
Not Rated | 81 min | Fantasy, Horror
Vampire Count Orlok expresses interest in a new residence and real estate agent Hutter's wife.
20. Jalsaghar (1958)
Not Rated | 95 min | Drama, Music
Depicts the end days of a decadent zamindar (landlord) in Bengal, and his efforts to uphold his family prestige even when faced with economic adversity.
Votes: 4,050 | Gross: $0.09M
21. Freaks (1932)
Not Rated | 64 min | Drama, Horror
A circus' beautiful trapeze artist agrees to marry the leader of side-show performers, but his deformed friends discover she is only marrying him for his inheritance.
22. Johnny Guitar (1954)
Not Rated | 110 min | Drama, Western
After helping a wounded gang member, a strong-willed female saloon owner is wrongly suspected of murder and bank robbery by a lynch mob.
23. The Mother and the Whore (1973)
210 min | Drama, Romance
In Paris, the pedantic Alexandre lives with his mate Marie in her apartment, an open relationship. Alexandre, who is idle and chauvinist, spends his days reading, drinking and shagging ... See full summary »
24. The Great Dictator (1940)
G | 125 min | Comedy, Drama, War
Dictator Adenoid Hynkel tries to expand his empire while a poor Jewish barber tries to avoid persecution from Hynkel's regime.
25. The Leopard (1963)
PG | 186 min | Drama, History
The Prince of Salina, a noble aristocrat of impeccable integrity, tries to preserve his family and class amid the tumultuous social upheavals of 1860's Sicily.
26. Hiroshima Mon Amour (1959)
Not Rated | 90 min | Drama, Romance
A French actress filming an anti-war film in Hiroshima has an affair with a married Japanese architect as they share their differing perspectives on war.
Votes: 22,310 | Gross: $0.09M
27. Pandora's Box (1929)
Not Rated | 109 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
The rise and inevitable fall of an amoral but naive young woman whose insouciant eroticism inspires lust and violence in those around her.
Votes: 8,170 | Gross: $0.01M
28. North by Northwest (1959)
Not Rated | 136 min | Action, Adventure, Mystery
A hapless New York advertising executive is mistaken for a government agent by a group of foreign spies, and is pursued across the country while he looks for a way to survive.
Votes: 245,392 | Gross: $13.28M
29. Pickpocket (1959)
Not Rated | 76 min | Crime, Drama
Michel is released from jail after serving a sentence for thievery. His mother dies and he resorts to pickpocketing as a means of survival.
30. Casque d'Or (1952)
Not Rated | 94 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
In an open-air dance hall, the members of Leca's gang are relaxing with their ladies. One of them, Marie, aka "Casque d'Or" (Golden Helmet) meets Manda, a carpenter. Her man Roland belongs ... See full summary »
31. The Barefoot Contessa (1954)
Approved | 128 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
At Maria Vargas' funeral, several people recall who she was and the impact she had on them. Harry Dawes was a not very successful writer/director when he and movie producer Kirk Edwards ... See full summary »
32. Moonfleet (1955)
Approved | 87 min | Adventure, Drama
Moonfleet is set in Dorset, England. The Fleet refers to the land just west of Portland, Southern England.
33. The Earrings of Madame de... (1953)
Not Rated | 105 min | Drama, Romance
The diamond earrings of a French aristocrat, a wedding gift from her husband, cause a series of conflicts as they change hands repeatedly.
34. Le Plaisir (1952)
Not Rated | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Three separate stories about the same thing: pleasure.
35. The Deer Hunter (1978)
R | 183 min | Drama, War
An in-depth examination of the ways in which the U.S. Vietnam War impacts and disrupts the lives of people in a small industrial town in Pennsylvania.
Votes: 259,608 | Gross: $48.98M
36. L'Avventura (1960)
Not Rated | 143 min | Drama, Mystery
A woman disappears during a Mediterranean boating trip. During the search, her lover and her best friend become attracted to each other.
37. Battleship Potemkin (1925)
Not Rated | 66 min | Drama, History
In the midst of the Russian Revolution of 1905, the crew of the battleship Potemkin mutiny against the brutal, tyrannical regime of the vessel's officers. The resulting street demonstration in Odessa brings on a police massacre.
Votes: 44,555 | Gross: $0.05M
38. Notorious (1946)
Not Rated | 101 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Romance
A woman is asked to spy on a group of Nazi friends in South America. How far will she have to go to ingratiate herself with them?
Votes: 79,930 | Gross: $10.46M
39. Ivan the Terrible, Part I (1945)
Not Rated | 95 min | Biography, Drama, History
During the early part of his reign, Ivan the Terrible faces betrayal from the aristocracy and even his closest friends as he seeks to unite the Russian people.
40. The Godfather (1972)
R | 175 min | Crime, Drama
The aging patriarch of an organized crime dynasty transfers control of his clandestine empire to his reluctant son.
Votes: 1,300,310 | Gross: $134.97M
41. Touch of Evil (1958)
PG-13 | 95 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
A stark, perverse story of murder, kidnapping, and police corruption in a Mexican border town.
Votes: 81,269 | Gross: $2.24M
42. The Wind (1928)
Not Rated | 95 min | Drama, Romance, Western
A frail young woman from the east moves in with her cousin in the west, where she causes tension within the family and is slowly driven mad.
43. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
G | 149 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi
Humanity finds a mysterious, obviously artificial object buried beneath the Lunar surface and, with the intelligent computer H.A.L. 9000, sets off on a quest.
Votes: 485,696 | Gross: $56.95M
44. Fanny and Alexander (1982)
R | 188 min | Drama
Two young Swedish children experience the many comedies and tragedies of their family, the Ekdahls.
Votes: 47,511 | Gross: $4.97M
45. The Crowd (1928)
Not Rated | 98 min | Drama, Romance
The life of a man and woman together in a large, impersonal metropolis through their hopes, struggles and downfalls.
46. 8½ (1963)
Not Rated | 138 min | Drama
A harried movie director retreats into his memories and fantasies.
Votes: 88,748 | Gross: $0.05M
47. La Jetée (1962)
Not Rated | 28 min | Short, Drama, Romance
The story of a man forced to explore his memories in the wake of World War III's devastation, told through still images.
48. Pierrot le Fou (1965)
Not Rated | 110 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
Pierrot escapes his boring society and travels from Paris to the Mediterranean Sea with Marianne, a girl chased by hit-men from Algeria. They lead an unorthodox life, always on the run.
49. The Story of a Cheat (1936)
81 min | Comedy
A charming scoundrel reflects on his exploits, from childhood through to manhood.
50. Amarcord (1973)
R | 123 min | Comedy, Drama
A series of comedic and nostalgic vignettes set in a 1930s Italian coastal town.
51. Beauty and the Beast (1946)
Not Rated | 93 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance
A beautiful young woman takes her father's place as the prisoner of a mysterious beast, who wishes to marry her.
Votes: 20,789 | Gross: $0.30M
52. Some Like It Hot (1959)
Not Rated | 121 min | Comedy, Romance
When two male musicians witness a mob hit, they flee the state in an all-female band disguised as women, but further complications set in.
Votes: 197,615 | Gross: $25.00M
53. Some Came Running (1958)
Approved | 137 min | Drama, Romance
Dave Hirsch, a writer and an army veteran winds up in his small Indiana hometown, to the dismay of his respectable older brother. He meets and befriends various different characters and tries to figure out what to do with his life.
54. Gertrud (1964)
Not Rated | 116 min | Drama, Romance
In the elegant world of artists and musicians, Gertrud ends her marriage to Gustav and takes a lover, the composer Erland Jansson.
55. King Kong (1933)
Not Rated | 100 min | Adventure, Horror, Sci-Fi
A film crew goes to a tropical island for an exotic location shoot and discovers a colossal ape who takes a shine to their female blonde star. He is then captured and brought back to New York City for public exhibition.
Votes: 69,703 | Gross: $10.00M
56. Laura (1944)
Not Rated | 88 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery
A police detective falls in love with the woman whose murder he is investigating.
57. Seven Samurai (1954)
Not Rated | 207 min | Adventure, Drama
A poor village under attack by bandits recruits seven unemployed samurai to help them defend themselves.
Votes: 256,130 | Gross: $0.27M
58. The 400 Blows (1959)
Not Rated | 99 min | Crime, Drama
Moving story of a young boy who, left without attention, delves into a life of petty crime.
59. La Dolce Vita (1960)
Not Rated | 174 min | Comedy, Drama
A series of stories following a week in the life of a philandering paparazzo journalist living in Rome.
Votes: 54,341 | Gross: $19.52M
60. The Dead (1987)
PG | 83 min | Drama
Gabriel Conroy and wife Greta attend an early January dinner with friends at the home of his spinster aunts, an evening which results in an epiphany for both of them.
Votes: 6,070 | Gross: $4.37M
61. Trouble in Paradise (1932)
Passed | 83 min | Comedy, Crime, Romance
A gentleman thief and a lady pickpocket join forces to con a beautiful perfume company owner. Romantic entanglements and jealousies confuse the scheme.
62. It's a Wonderful Life (1946)
PG | 130 min | Drama, Family, Fantasy
An angel is sent from Heaven to help a desperately frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed.
Votes: 318,194 | Gross: $7.27M
63. Monsieur Verdoux (1947)
Not Rated | 124 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
A suave but cynical man supports his family by marrying and murdering rich women for their money, but the job has some occupational hazards.
Votes: 12,905 | Gross: $0.33M
64. The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928)
Not Rated | 114 min | Biography, Drama, History
In 1431, Jeanne d'Arc is placed on trial on charges of heresy. The ecclesiastical jurists attempt to force Jeanne to recant her claims of holy visions.
Votes: 31,688 | Gross: $0.02M
65. Breathless (1960)
Not Rated | 90 min | Crime, Drama
A small-time thief steals a car and impulsively murders a motorcycle policeman. Wanted by the authorities, he reunites with a hip American journalism student and attempts to persuade her to run away with him to Italy.
Votes: 58,764 | Gross: $0.34M
66. Apocalypse Now (1979)
R | 147 min | Drama, War
During the Vietnam War, Captain Willard is sent on a dangerous mission into Cambodia to assassinate a renegade Colonel who has set himself up as a god among a local tribe.
Votes: 501,021 | Gross: $83.47M
67. Barry Lyndon (1975)
PG | 185 min | Adventure, Drama, History
An Irish rogue wins the heart of a rich widow and assumes her dead husband's aristocratic position in 18th-century England.
68. La Grande Illusion (1937)
Not Rated | 113 min | Drama, War
During the First World War, two French soldiers are captured and imprisoned in a German P.O.W. camp. Several escape attempts follow until they are sent to a seemingly impenetrable fortress which seems impossible to escape from.
Votes: 29,176 | Gross: $0.17M
Not Rated | 197 min | Drama, History
The story of a poor young woman, separated by prejudice from her husband and baby, is interwoven with tales of intolerance from throughout history.
Votes: 11,833 | Gross: $2.18M
70. A Day in the Country (1936)
Not Rated | 40 min | Short, Comedy, Drama
The family of a Parisian shop-owner spends a day in the country. The daughter falls in love to a man at the inn, where they spend the day.
71. Playtime (1967)
Not Rated | 115 min | Comedy
Monsieur Hulot curiously wanders around a high-tech Paris, paralleling a trip with a group of American tourists. Meanwhile, a nightclub/restaurant prepares its opening night, but it's still under construction.
72. Rome, Open City (1945)
Not Rated | 103 min | Drama, Thriller, War
During the Nazi occupation of Rome in 1944, the Resistance leader, Giorgio Manfredi, is chased by the Nazis as he seeks refuge and a way to escape.
73. Senso (1954)
Not Rated | 123 min | Drama, History, Romance
A troubled and neurotic Italian Countess betrays her entire country for a self-destructive love affair with an Austrian Lieutenant.
74. Modern Times (1936)
G | 87 min | Comedy, Drama, Family
The Tramp struggles to live in modern industrial society with the help of a young homeless woman.
Votes: 166,714 | Gross: $0.16M
75. Van Gogh (1991)
R | 158 min | Biography, Drama
The final sixty-seven days of Van Gogh's life is examined.
Votes: 2,177 | Gross: $0.14M
76. An Affair to Remember (1957)
Not Rated | 115 min | Drama, Romance
A couple falls in love and agrees to meet in six months at the Empire State Building - but will it happen?
77. Andrei Rublev (1966)
Not Rated | 205 min | Biography, Drama, History
The life, times and afflictions of the fifteenth-century Russian iconographer.
78. The Scarlet Empress (1934)
Not Rated | 104 min | Drama, History, Romance
Young Princess Sophia of Germany is taken to Russia to marry the half-wit Grand Duke Peter, son of the Empress. The domineering Empress hopes to improve the royal blood line. Sophia doesn't... See full summary »
79. Sansho the Bailiff (1954)
Not Rated | 124 min | Drama
In medieval Japan, a compassionate governor is sent into exile. His wife and children try to join him, but are separated, and the children grow up amid suffering and oppression.
80. Talk to Her (2002)
R | 112 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance
Two men share an odd friendship while they care for two women who are both in deep comas.
Votes: 92,685 | Gross: $9.28M
81. The Party (1968)
PG | 99 min | Comedy
A clerical mistake results in a bumbling Indian film star being invited to an exclusive Hollywood party instead of being fired.
82. Tabu: A Story of the South Seas (1931)
TV-PG | 86 min | Drama, Romance, Adventure
On the South Pacific island of Bora Bora, a young couple's love is threatened when the tribal chief declares the girl a sacred virgin.
83. The Band Wagon (1953)
Passed | 112 min | Comedy, Musical, Romance
A pretentiously artistic director is hired for a new Broadway musical and changes it beyond recognition.
84. A Star Is Born (1954)
Approved | 154 min | Drama, Musical, Romance
A film star helps a young singer and actress find fame, even as age and alcoholism send his own career on a downward spiral.
Votes: 11,633 | Gross: $14.93M
85. Monsieur Hulot's Holiday (1953)
Not Rated | 83 min | Comedy
Monsieur Hulot comes to a beachside hotel for a vacation, where he accidentally (but good-naturedly) causes havoc.
86. America America (1963)
Not Rated | 174 min | Drama
A young Anatolian Greek, entrusted with his family's fortune, loses it en route to Istanbul and dreams of going to the United States.
87. El (1953)
Approved | 82 min | Drama, Romance
A husband's suave exterior unravels after his marriage, and he unleashes his paranoid and volatile temper on his wife, which escalates to more dangerous and unpredictable tantrums.
88. Kiss Me Deadly (1955)
Not Rated | 106 min | Crime, Film-Noir, Mystery
A doomed female hitchhiker pulls Mike Hammer into a deadly whirlpool of intrigue, revolving around a mysterious "great whatsit."
89. Once Upon a Time in America (1984)
R | 229 min | Crime, Drama
A former Prohibition-era Jewish gangster returns to the Lower East Side of Manhattan over thirty years later, where he once again must confront the ghosts and regrets of his old life.
Votes: 249,236 | Gross: $5.32M
90. Le Jour se Leve (1939)
Not Rated | 93 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
After committing a murder, a man locks himself in his apartment and recollects the events that led him to the killing.
Votes: 5,310 | Gross: $0.03M
91. Letter from an Unknown Woman (1948)
Not Rated | 87 min | Drama, Romance
A pianist about to flee from a duel receives a letter from a woman he cannot remember, who may hold the key to his downfall.
92. Lola (1961)
Not Rated | 90 min | Drama, Romance
A bored young man meets with his former girlfriend, now a cabaret dancer and single mother, and soon finds himself falling back in love with her.
93. Manhattan (1979)
R | 96 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
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.
Votes: 114,918 | Gross: $45.70M
94. Mulholland Dr. (2001)
R | 147 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.
Votes: 269,021 | Gross: $7.22M
95. My Night at Maud's (1969)
PG | 105 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
The rigid principles of a devout Catholic man are challenged during a one-night stay with Maud, a divorced woman with an outsize personality.
96. Night and Fog (1956)
Not Rated | 32 min | Documentary, Short, History
The history of Nazi Germany's death camps of the Final Solution and the hellish world of dehumanization and death contained inside.
97. The Gold Rush (1925)
Not Rated | 95 min | Adventure, Comedy, Drama
A prospector goes to the Klondike in search of gold and finds it and more.
Votes: 77,942 | Gross: $5.45M
98. Scarface (1932)
PG | 93 min | Action, Crime, Drama
An ambitious and near insanely violent gangster climbs the ladder of success in the mob, but his weaknesses prove to be his downfall.
99. Bicycle Thieves (1948)
Not Rated | 89 min | Drama
In post-war Italy, a working-class man's bicycle is stolen. He and his son set out to find it.
Votes: 109,784 | Gross: $0.33M