Monday, May 23, 2005

But What's the 101th Greatest Movie?

I thought it was a good idea for Time's movie critics to present their Top 100 movies list unranked. These lists are always a little pointless, but what's far more pointless is trying to arrange them into some kind of ranking order; what exactly is the difference between the 91st and 92nd best film of all time?

I don't have any big problems with Schickel and Corliss's list; we'd all have chosen differently, of course, but most of the great moviemakers and important genres are properly represented. More problematic are the reader rankings, which put Star Wars and Lord of the Rings at the very top of the list of all-time greats. It was inevitable, of course, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

As to how the list breaks down by decade, there are 5 picks from the current decade, 10 from the '90s, 12 from the '80s, 9 from the '70s, 15 from the '60s, 16 from the '50s, 15 from the '40s, 12 from the '30s, and 6 from the '20s. Surprised to see the '70s so underrepresented on this list, though I'm more annoyed with the under-representation of the silent era. (And of course, leaving of The Rules of the Game was almost certainly done just to piss people off. Don't take the bait.)

Anyway, any all-time greats list that leaves off Annie Hall must be doing something right.

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