Movies Ranked 1-100

About ranking films: As I went through this marathon, I rated each film using a ten-factor scale (see below): 1-10 for each factor to get a cumulative score between one and a hundred. (To make for easy comparison to IMDb ratings, I then divided by ten, so that 68 became 6.8.)

What I’ve learned in looking back at my ratings is that I wasn’t very good at it. My scores in the beginning tended to skew low, and this final list corresponds only roughly to the original numbers I assigned. More to the point, my subject impressions of the films have continued to evolve. A lesson in humility and the limits of (purportedly) objective analysis.

Rank Title Country Year Director Day
#1 The Diving Bell and the Butterfly France 2007 Julian Schnabel 65
#2 A Separation Iran 2011 Asghar Farhadi 5
#3 Lore Germany 2012 Cate Shortland 43
#4 The Ascent Russia 1977 Larisa Shepitko 81
#5 Ikiru Japan 1952 Akira Kurosawa 86
#6 Tokyo Story Japan 1953 Yasujirô Ozu 97
#7 Battle of Algiers Algeria 1966 Gillo Pontecorvo 41
#8 The Kid with a Bike Belgium 2011 Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne 63
#9 Close Up Iran 1990 Abbas Kiarostami 26
#10 The Passion of Joan of Arc France 1928 Carl Theodor Dreyer 35
#11 Lorna’s Silence Belgium 2008 Jean-Pierre Dardenne, Luc Dardenne 95
#12 Before the Rain Macedonia 1994 Milcho Manchevski 88
#13 The Girl on the Bridge France 1999 Patrice Leconte 76
#14 In The Mood For Love Hong Kong 2000 Kar Wai Wong 100
#15 The Bicycle Thieves Italy 1948 Vittorio De Sica 2
#16 A Hijacking Denmark 2012 Tobias Lindholm 85
#17 Certified Copy France 2010 Abbas Kiarostami 92
#18 Once Upon a Time in Anatolia Turkey 2011 Nuri Bilge Ceylan 13
#19 Ghost In The Shell: Innocence Japan 2004 Mamoru Oshii 59
#20 Vampyr Germany 1932 Carl Theodor Dreyer 99
#21 The Seventh Seal Sweden 1957 Ingmar Bergman 93
#22 Bus 174 Brazil 2002 José Padilha, Felipe Lacerda 3
#23 Grave of Fireflies Japan 1988 Isao Takahata 12
#24 Munyurangabo Rwanda 2007 Lee Isaac Chung 20
#25 Chungking Express Hong Kong 1994 Kar Wai Wong 1
#26 Mesrine: Public Enemy #1 France 2008 Jean-François Richet 96
#27 Revanche Austria 2008 Götz Spielmann 77
#28 Ivan’s Childhood Russia 1962 Andrey Tarkovskiy 16
#29 Wrong Rosary Turkey 2009 Mahmut Fazil Coskun 32
#30 Nairobi Half Life Kenya 2012 David ‘Tosh’ Gitonga 50
#31 The Color of Paradise Iran 1999 Majid Majidi 68
#32 Le Doulos France 1962 Jean-Pierre Melville 90
#33 House of the Flying Daggers China 2004 Yimou Zhang 98
#34 A Man Escaped France 1956 Robert Bresson 60
#35 Woman in the Dunes Japan 1964 Hiroshi Teshigahara 68
#36 Nine Queens Argentina 2000 Fabián Bielinsky 10
#37 Fitzcarraldo Germany 1982 Werner Herzog 29
#38 Cronos Mexico 1993 Guillermo del Toro 58
#39 Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter . . . S. Korea 2003 Ki-duk Kim 89
#40 The Turin Horse Hungary 2011 Béla Tarr 54
#41 The Scent of Green Papaya Vietnam 1993 Tran Anh Hung 56
#42 Not One Less China 1999 Yimou Zhang 24
#43 The Edge of Heaven Turkey 2007 Fatih Akin 74
#44 Wild Strawberries Sweden 1957 Ingmar Bergman 9
#45 A Woman in Berlin Germany 2008 Max Färberböck 84
#46 Z France 1969 Costa-Gavras 25
#47 3 Idiots India 2009 Rajkumar Hirani 23
#48 Le Havre Finland 2011 Aki Kaurismäki 38
#49 Nosferatu Germany 1922 F.W. Murnau 6
#50 Water India 2005 Deepa Mehta 9
#51 Ip Man Hong Kong 2008 Wilson Yip 19
#52 Good Bye, Lenin Germany 2003 Wolfgang Becker 78
#53 War Witch Congo 2012 Kim Nguyen 71
#54 The Trap Serbia 2007 Srdan Golubovic 83
#55 Le Cercle Rouge France 1970 Jean-Pierre Melville 47
#56 Late Spring Japan 1949 Yasujirô Ozu 21
#57 La Pirogue France 2012 Moussa Touré 48
#58 Nayak India 1966 Satyajit Ray 51
#59 Mesrine: Killer Instinct France 2008 Jean-François Richet 67
#60 Please Vote For Me China 2007 Weijun Chen 49
#61 Run Lola Run Germany 1998 Tom Tykwer 37
#62 The Man from Nowhere S. Korea 2010 Jeong-beom Lee 52
#63 The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari Germany 1920 Robert Wiene 62
#64 The Shop on Main Street Czech Repub. 1965 Ján Kadár 28
#65 The Intouchables France 2011 Olivier Nakache 17
#66 La Jetée France 1962 Chris Marker 80
#67 Rififi France 1955 Jules Dassin 4
#68 Miss Bala Mexico 2011 Gerardo Naranjo 55
#69 Stolen Kisses France 1968 François Truffaut 45
#70 Kon-Tiki Norway 2012 Joachim Rønning 15
#71 Yojimbo Japan 1961 Akira Kurosawa 33
#72 Death of a Cyclist Spain 1955 Juan Antonio Bardem 31
#73 Knife In The Water Poland 1962 Roman Polanski 11
#74 Rust and Bone France 2012 Jacques Audiard 34
#75 Intimidation Japan 1960 Koreyoshi Kurahara 44
#76 King of Devil’s Island Norway 2010 Marius Holst 40
#77 Lady Vengeance S. Korea 2005 Chan-wook Park 87
#78 Touchez Pas Au Grisbi France 1954 Jacques Becker 57
#79 The Sicilian Girl Italy 2008 Marco Amenta 22
#80 Caramel Lebanon 2007 Nadine Labaki 82
#81 Nostalgia For The Light Chile 2010 Patricio Guzmán 18
#82 Distant Turkey 2002 Nuri Bilge Ceylan 91
#83 Elite Squad Brazil 2007 José Padilha 94
#84 Cell 211 Spain 2009 Daniel Monzón 79
#85 La Femme Nikita France 1990 Luc Besson 73
#86 The Island Russia 2006 Pavel Lungin 75
#87 The Front Line S. Korea 2011 Hun Jang 7
#88 Babette’s Feast Denmark 1987 Gabriel Axel 66
#89 The Hidden Face Spain 2011 Andrés Baiz 61
#90 Blind Chance Poland 1987 Krzysztof Kieslowski 53
#91 Mother S. Korea 2009 Joon-ho Bong 30
#92 Footnote Israel 2011 Joseph Cedar 36
#93 The Ear Czech Repub. 1970 Karel Kachyna 72
#94 Malèna Italy 2000 Giuseppe Tornatore 70
#95 Key of Life Japan 2012 Kenji Uchida 46
#96 Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior Thailand 2003 Prachya Pinkaew 14
#97 Castaway on the Moon S. Korea 2009 Hey-jun Lee 64
#98 Rusty Knife Japan 1958 Toshio Masuda 39
#99 How I Ended The Summer Russia 2010 Aleksey Popogrebskiy 27
#100 Pieta S. Korea 2012 Ki-duk Kim 42

* The ten factors in my (imperfect) rating system: Story | Character | Technique, sound, visuals | Performances | Intellectual Engagement | Emotional Engagement | Texture and/or Humor | Social/Moral Salience | Distinct Vision | Subjective Impact.

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