Who better to judge the best movies of all time than the people who make them? Studio chiefs, Oscar winners and TV royalty all were surveyed as THR publishes its first definitive entertainment-industry ranking of cinema's most superlative.
Is it wrong to already declare this the No. 1 movie list of all time?
After all, there are other movie lists. Lots and lots of others. So many lists, you couldn't list them all. But this is the first to ask the entertainment industry itself to pick its choices for the best pictures ever made. In May, THR sent an online ballot all over town — to every studio, agency, publicity firm and production house on either side of the 405. Not everybody was initially thrilled to participate.
"I reject the idea," Breaking Bad creator Vince Gilligan told THR. "To me, it's the equivalent of having a party-size bag of Nacho Doritos, then being told to eat only five." In the end, though, he sent in his favorites (one of which is 1961's Yojimbo), as did a total of 2,120 industry members, including Fox chief Jim Gianopulos, Disney's Alan Horn, director Gary Ross, producer Frank Marshall, Warners' Sue Kroll, agent Robert Newman, attorney John Burke, filmmaker John Singleton and many more. These are the results: the greatest movies ever made, according to Hollywood.
5. Pulp Fiction (1994)
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, Ving Rhames
Domestic lifetime gross (adjusted for inflation, 2014): $202,078,200
Famous quote: "If my answers frighten you then you should cease asking scary questions." — Jules
Tarantino got it right, all right. In fact, Miramax's Pulp Fiction might be the most influential movie made during the 1990s, inspiring scads of imitators (nicknamed Tarantinies) and dozens of knockoffs.
4. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
Director: Frank Darabont
Cast: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman
Domestic lifetime gross (adjusted for inflation, 2014): $53,014,600
Famous quote: "Remember Red, hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies." – Andy Dufresne [in letter to Red]
Of all the adaptations of Stephen King stories -- and they are legion because he is the most-adapted living writer -- this is only one of two (along with The Shining) to make the list.
3. Citizen Kane (1941)
Director: Orson Welles
Cast: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Dorothy Comingore, Agnes Moorehead, Ruth Warrick
Domestic lifetime gross (adjusted for inflation, 2014): $2,998,000
Famous quote: "It isn't enough to tell us what a man did. You've got to tell us who he was." — Rawlson
Critics have hailed this for decades as "the greatest American movie ever made," making it an all-too-easy pick for anyone's greatest-movie list. But not all moviegoers, especially younger ones, are enthralled with the story of Charles Foster Kane and his long-lost sled. Among poll respondents in their 20s, for instance, it was only the 26th-favorite film. Among the under-20s, it was 53rd. Among those over 60, though, it was No. 1 or 2.
2. The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Director: Victor Fleming
Cast: Judy Garland, Frank Morgan, Ray Bolger, Bert Lahr, Jack Haley
Domestic lifetime gross (adjusted for inflation, 2014): $32,950,500
Famous quote: "Lions, and tigers, and bears! Oh, my!" — Dorothy
It's the most-watched film of all time, according to the Library of Congress, thanks to regular showings on broadcast television since the mid-1950s (and on cable since the '90s). That's not including sequels and prequels, which Hollywood keeps releasing each decade like swarms of flying monkeys. The most recent, Oz the Great and Powerful, starring James Franco as a hunky young wizard, grossed more than $230 million domestically. That yellow brick road clearly is made of gold.
1. The Godfather (1972)
Director: Francis Ford Coppola
Cast: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton, Talia Shire
Domestic lifetime gross (adjusted for inflation, 2014): $626,025,500
Famous quote: "I'm gonna make him an offer he can't refuse." — Don Corleone
Godfather is 42 years old, meaning anyone who saw it when it came out in 1972 is pushing 60 or older. This suggests its narrative power, extraordinary performances and mythic values register as strongly for younger viewers as they did at the time.
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