Top 100 Best Films Ever Made

The greatest of the great, the list to end all lists.

To mark the end of Film Swot, we have created a list. Not like our usual Top 10s; this is different. This the 100 greatest films to ever grace our screens, the 100 greatest films you could ever have the pleasure of watching. We love our lists and we know you do too, so kick back and have a scroll.

100.

© – Paramount

Mean Girls 

Release date: 2004

Consensus: “A refreshing teen flick that has become a cult love amongst teenagers and adults alike.”

99.

© – Fox Searchlight

The Way, Way Back

Release date: 2013

Consensus: “A career high performance from Sam Rockwell and an arsehole-turn from Steve Carrell help build this loveable indie film.

98.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

Kramer vs Kramer

Release date: 1979

Consensus: “A perfectly executed, raw tale of divorce’s impact on a family.”

97.

 

© – Warner Bros

L.A. Confidential

Release date: 1997

Consensus: “Engrossing noir with an outstanding cast and enough narrative turns to fill a James Ellroy novel – oh wait.”

96.

© – Columbia Pictures

Step Brothers

Release date: 2008

Consensus: “Carried by the side-splitting chemistry of Ferrell and Reilly, the film rose above presumed mediocrity to become a hit.”

95.

© – Columbia Pictures

Spider-Man 2

Release date: 2004

Consensus: “Getting everything right, it’s the best Spider-Man movie to date and one of the best superhero films of all time.”

94.

© – Universal Pictures

Hot Fuzz

Release date: 2007

Consensus: “Infinitely quotable thanks to a brilliant script, the second film in the Cornetto trilogy is also the best.”

93.

 

© – Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

The Champ

Release date: 1979

Consensus: “Even the coldest of hearts will fall to The Champ. A painful, heartbreakingly memorable watch.”

92.

 

© – Fox Searchlight

500 Days of Summer

Release date: 2009

Consensus: “Never has there been a more accurate look at young love, or rather, how we all approach love.”

91.

 

© – MGM

GoldenEye

Release date: 1995

Consensus: “Our introduction to the best James Bond of all time (sorry Connery & Craig) gave the beloved franchise a new lease of life.”

90.

 

© – Miramax Films

Good Will Hunting

Release date: 1997

Consensus: “For two relative newcomers, Damon and Affleck pulled off something greater than the maths equations Will solves; they warmed every single one of our hearts.”

 

89.

© – Marvel

Captain America: Civil War

Release date: 2016

Consensus: “Nothing gets the fans giddier than seeing all of their heroes in the same place – helps that the film is a cracker too.”

88.

 

Harry Potter & the Deathly

© – Warner Bros

Hallows: Part II

Release date: 2011

Consensus: “You’ll cheer, you’ll laugh, you’ll  definitely cry. What a way to conclude a legendary, truly magical saga.”

87.

© – 20th Century Fox

Titanic

Release date: 1997

Consensus: “The definitive romantic epic that lives up to the hype. You jump, I jump, remember?”

86.

 

© – Bryanston Pictures

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Release date: 1974

Consensus: “Absolutely horrifying and remarkably realistic, this is timeless nightmare fuel.”

85.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

The Deer Hunter

Release date: 1978

Consensus: “As psychologically tiring as a game of Russian Roulette, you won’t forget The Deer Hunter.”

84.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

The Thin Red Line

Release date: 1998

Consensus: “For Zimmer’s theme alone, The Thin Red Line establishes itself as an iconic war epic.”

83.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

Gone Girl

Release date: 2014

Consensus: “A modern thriller with a wicked bite, brilliantly adapted by Fincher.”

82.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Fugitive

Release date: 1993

Consensus: “Before the age of one-man revenge thrillers, The Fugitive, bolstered by star performances from Harrison and Jones, was ahead of its time.”

81.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Shining

Release date: 1980

Consensus: “Kubrick takes on the scariest hotel on Earth, with Nicholson, creepy twins and haunted rooms ready to petrify us.”

80.

 

© – United Artists

The Good, The Bad

And The Ugly

Release date: 1966

Consensus: “Beautifully violent, expertly crafted spaghetti western. That is all.”

 

79.

 

© – Warner Bros

Casablanca

Release date: 1942

Consensus: “Step in, lose yourself in Bogart and Bergman’s romance, repeat – it’s a one of a kind, believe the hype.”

78.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

Stand By Me

Release date: 1986

Consensus: “A somber tale of friendship and family, great for kids, but perfect for adults looking back on their youth.”

77.

 

© – Orion Pictures

Silence of the Lambs

Release date: 1991

Consensus: “Yes its gruesome, but at its core, Silence of the Lambs is a riveting psychological drama, perfectly served with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.”

76.

 

© – Gramercy Pictures

The Usual Suspects

Release date: 1995

Consensus: This is far from your usual thriller; seductively crafted with one of the greatest pay offs in cinematic history.”

75.

 

© – Warner Bros

Heat

Release date: 1995

Consensus: “Michael Mann’s original crime epic remains as jaw-droppingly masterful on every front today as it did 20 years ago.”

74.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Top Gun

Release date: 1986

Consensus: Bursting with pure testosterone and terrific action sequences, Top Gun is simply awesome – best enjoyed with your wingman.”

73.

 

© – Warner Bros

Prisoners

Release date: 2013

Consensus: “Parents beware; this is a pulse pounding nightmare, stunningly realised by Villeneuve.”

72.

 

© – United Artists

Rocky

Release date: 1976

Consensus: “The feel good movie of a generation, pioneering the formula we’ve come to learn so well.”

71.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

Fight Club

Release date: 1999

Consensus: “First rule of Fight Club, don’t talk about Fight Club – because it requires no words.”

70.

 

© – Warner Bros

Slumdog Millionaire

Release date: 2008

Consensus: “Boyle doesn’t try to cheat us. It’s impossible not to smile at his impeccably crafted tale of the underdog.

 

69.

 

© – Warner Bros

A Clockwork Orange

Release date: 1971

Consensus: “The ultra-violent nature of Kubrick’s classic may be off-putting for some, but its message goes beyond simply trying to shock you.”

68.

 

© – Gramercy Pictures

The Big Lebowski

Release date: 1998

Consensus: A wildly entertaining, delightfully irregular screwball comedy; but that’s just my opinion, man.”

67.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

The Social Network

Release date: 2010

Consensus: “Who knew the story of Facebook could provide a film so breathlessly gripping, aided by the golden combination of Sorkin and Fincher. *clicks Like*.”

66.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Grease

Release date: 1978

Consensus: “Relentlessly cheesy and electrifying, trust me, you’ll be having a blast.”

65.

 

© – RKO

It’s a Wonderful Life

Release date: 1946

Consensus: “A frequent topper of Christmas movie lists, its a tearjerker that’ll touch you forever.”

64.

 

© – Miramax Pictures

Trainspotting

Release date: 1996

Consensus: “A generation defining film that has become essential to growing up in Scotland. It also remains one of the finest hits you can get.”

63.

 

© – Tartan Films

Oldboy

Release date: 2003

Consensus: “A neon-soaked bloodbath with “cult classic” written all over it.”

62.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

A Few Good Men

Release date: 1992

Consensus: “Even outside the iconic court battle, its a wildly entertaining and gripping old-fashioned affair.”

61.

 

© – Miramax

Gangs of New York

Release date: 2002

Consensus: “Massively ambitious, Scorcese’s bare-knuckle epic is the most thrilling history lesson you’ll ever get.”

60.

 

© – Open Road Films

Spotlight

Release date: 2015

Consensus: “An absolute triumph in modern historic filmmaking.”

 

59.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

Release date: 1961

Consensus: “A sharply written foresight into the age of popular rom-coms, with Hepburn leading the way faultlessly.”

58.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

Taken

Release date: 2008

Consensus: “Chilling to thrilling throughout. The finest one-man revenge thriller ever made, simple.”

57.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

Release date: 1986

Consensus: “Expertly held by Broderick, this loveable and relatable teen flick has infinite charm.”

56.

 

© – Miramax Films

Reservoir Dogs

Release date: 1992

Consensus: “Tarantino’s first directorial effort made him a brutal force to be reckoned with; shocking, compelling and a bloody great time.”

55.

 

© – Universal Pictures

Schindler’s List

Release date: 1993

Consensus: “Utterly heartbreaking, captivating and breaking you completely. Knowing this stems from a true atrocity makes it so, so much worse.”

54.

 

© – Universal Pictures

Boyhood

Release date: 2014

Consensus: “Filmed over 12 years, to call this an epic would be an understatement; rather, it is life.”

53.

 

© – Summit Entertainment

La La Land

Release date: 2017

Consensus: “A musical masterpiece; I am unashamedly and unconditionally in love with La La Land.”

52.

 

© – MGM

Casino Royale

Release date: 2006

Consensus: “Skyfall may be Craig’s pinnacle, but Casino Royale changed the game forever. Never had James Bond been so deadly and brutal.”

51.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Exorcist

Release date: 1973

Consensus: “Hiding behind the couch, under the bed sheets, covering your eyes; none of that will help you escape. That is what makes The Exorcist the scariest film ever made.”

50.

 

© – RKO

Citizen Kane

Release date: 1941

Consensus: “A groundbreaking cinematic pioneer. Without Citizen Kane, who knows what film culture would have descended into.”

 

49.

 

© – Dreamworks Pictures

American Beauty

Release date: 1999

Consensus: “A meticulously acted, suburban exploration of stereotypes and what makes us all tick.”

48.

 

© – Disney

Finding Nemo

Release date: 2003

Consensus: A deep sea adventure that’ll hit close to home, busting with energy, love and everything you else you could want.”

47.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Departed

Release date: 2006

Consensus: “Scorcese juggles heavy hitters round a perfect, unpredictable gangster saga.”

46.

 

© – Universal Pictures

Jurassic Park

Release date: 1993

Consensus: “Spielberg’s post-historic thrill ride still manages to capture a pure sense of wonder in an age where special effects should be better, but aren’t.”

45.

 

© – New Line Cinema

Dumb and Dumber

Release date: 1994

Consensus: “Totally juvenile, ridiculously silly and absolutely ingenious. Carrey and Daniels are a revelation.”

44.

 

© – Picturehouse

The Guest

Release date: 2014

Consensus: “Stevens’ maniacal agent of fury and charm is the centrepiece of this ice-cold thriller.”

43.

 

© – Studio Ghibli

Spirited Away

Release date: 2001

Consensus: “Utterly spellbinding, Spirited Away is the most exceptional of the Studio Ghibli collection.”

42.

 

© – Toho

Seven Samurai

Release date: 1954

Consensus: “Undeniably critical to cinema, this seminal classic drove an entire genre, yet remains the sizzling high point even today.”

41.

 

© – New Line Cinema

Lord of the Rings:

Fellowship of the Ring

Release date: 2001

Consensus: “Where the love for this glorious fantasy saga began. Jackson’s first adaptation is a landmark cinematic achievement.”

40.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Green Mile

Release date: 1999

Consensus: “Both uplifting and depressing, it’ll draw you in and move you in ways you couldn’t imagine.”

 

39.

 

© – United Artists

Apocalypse Now

Release date: 1979

Consensus: “Coppola’s burning vision refuses to bow down to Hollywood conventions, cementing itself as an unforgettable experience.”

38.

 

© – Miramax Films

There Will Be Blood

Release date: 2007

Consensus: This ruthless character driven piece, led by the charismatic Daniel Day Lewis, strikes gold.”

37.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Saving Private Ryan

Release date: 1998

Consensus: “Starting with a hellishly accurate bloodbath on Normandy, Spielberg’s epic captures the unforeseen horror of war.”

36.

 

© – United Artists

One Flew Over the

Cuckoos Nest

Release date: 1975

Consensus: “Simply remarkable. Nicholson’s anti-hero is a cinematic icon.”

35.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Indiana Jones:

Temple of Doom

Release date: 1984

Consensus: “Indy’s totally bonkers prequel loses none of the charm which made the first film a sensation.”

34.

 

© – Warner Bros

True Romance

Release date: 1993

Consensus: “A dazzling, energetic, ultimately ‘cool’ piece of cinema. Zimmer’s theme will also have you humming long after.”

33.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

Boyz N The Hood

Release date: 1991

Consensus: “An indescribably powerful film, bringing gang violence to brutal, essential attention.”

32.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

Die Hard

Release date: 1988

Consensus: “Though seemingly unstoppable, John McClane is the most relatable action hero of all time. Yippee ki-yay!”

31.

 

© – The Weinstein Company

The Intouchables

Release date: 2011

Consensus: “Manages to be one of the most touching and hilarious films in recent memory; a real treat.”

30.

 

© – Miramax Films

No Country for Old Men

Release date: 2007

Consensus: “A darkly absorbing neo-western, with Bardem’s formidable Devil-on-Earth striking fear through all of us.”

 

29.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Collateral

Release date: 2004

Consensus: “Michael Mann’s finest film is delectable, oozing with a slow charm that turns into an intense thrill ride.”

28.

© – Columbia Pictures

Dr Strangelove

Release date: 1964

Consensus: “Kubrick’s masterclass in biting political satire is alarmingly relevant today.”

27.

 

© – Universal Pictures

The Breakfast Club

Release date: 1985

Consensus: “Hits all the reliable 80s movie notes, carrying the likability that makes it a common favourite on everyone’s list.”

26.

 

© – Universal Pictures

Gladiator

Release date: 2000

Consensus: “An undisputed epic. Are you not entertained?”

25.

 

© – Columbia Pictures

Taxi Driver

Release date: 1976

Consensus: “One of the most captivating films of all time. You’ll never keep your eyes off De Niro’s unhinged performance.”

24.

 

© – Universal Pictures

Back to the Future: Part II

Release date: 1989

Consensus: “Buzzing with energy and inventiveness, the second part of this iconic trilogy amps up the fun, although try not be too sad you can’t have a hoverboard.”

23.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

Aliens

Release date: 1986

Consensus: “An appropriate response to the terror faced in Alien, the sequel is an exhilarating, kick-ass rollercoaster.”

22.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Matrix

Release date: 1999

Consensus: “The Wachowski Brothers boggled our minds and dropped our jaws, and that’s just the first 20 minutes.”

21.

 

© – Sony Pictures Classics

Whiplash

Release date: 2014

Consensus: “For Simmons’ ground-shattering performance alone, the insanely brilliant Whiplash is a modern classic.”

20.

 

© – MGM

2001: A Space Odyssey

Release date: 1964

Consensus: “Haunting, ominous, majestic, extraordinary; 2001 is a constantly unravelling entity.”

 

19.

 

© – Warner Bros

The Goonies

Release date: 1985

Consensus: “Spielberg’s ragtag, talented group of youngsters lead this enthralling, loveable treasure hunt.”

18.

 

© – Warner Bros

Blade Runner

Release date: 1982

Consensus: “Hugely influential, visceral, hypnotic, timeless; a true masterpiece.”

17.

 

© – TriStar Pictures

Terminator 2: Judgement Day

Release date: 1991

Consensus: “A no-holds-barred, phenomenal sequel that is far more daring and impressive than its predecessor.”

16.

 

© – Warner Bros

Inception

Release date: 2010

Consensus: “It’s a throughly inventive, original, hair-raising dream for movie-goers, blowing our minds in ways we didn’t think were possible.”

15.

 

© – 20th Century Fox

Alien

Release date: 1979

Consensus: “Trust me, everyone can hear you scream when you watch Alien – a heart-pounding, claustrophobic nightmare.”

14.

 

© – Paramount Pictures

Raiders of the Lost Ark

Release date: 1981

Consensus: “The ultimate adventure film; a charming hero, witty script, brilliant action sequences and eh, nazis – what else could you want?”

13.

 

© – Warner Bros

Goodfellas

Release date: 1990

Consensus: “Joe Pesci’s psychotic performance steals the show, but at its core, Goodfellas is a masterclass in delicate, compelling storytelling.”

12.

 

© – Universal Pictures

Jaws

Release date: 1975

Consensus: “There may not be any ghosts or slashers in sight, but Jaws is one of the scariest films ever made. Its impact on people is unprecedented.”

11.

© – New Line Cinema

Lord of the Rings:

Return of the King

Release date: 2003

Consensus: “The final entry in this legendary saga is humungous in scale. A constant goosebump-inducing adventure beyond our wildest fantasies.”

 

Time for the big hitters, get ready for the Top 10 Best Films Ever Made!

10.

© – Paramount Pictures

The Godfather

Release date: 1972

Consensus: “The revolutionary gangster saga has remained a cinematic milestone for every generation since its release.”

9.

© – Lionsgate

Warrior

Release date: 2011

Consensus: “Despite only being able to head in one direction, Warrior manages to induce goosebumps and trigger tears throughout. A familiar formula followed perfectly and more.”

8.

© – Miramax

Pulp Fiction

Release date: 1994

Consensus: “Tarantino broke down narrative barriers and changed the landscape of cinema forever. Yet, over 20 years later, it feels as fresh and stylish as ever.”

7.

© – Sony Pictures Classics

The Raid 2

Release date: 2014

Consensus: “No film has ever been so perfectly choreographed. The finest, blood-soaked action spectacular ever made.”

6.

© – 20th Century Fox

Star Wars: Episode V –

Empire Strikes Back

Release date: 1980

Consensus: The iconic twist aside, everything in this extraordinary entry took a step forward; darker, maturer, higher stakes and even more fun. Flawless.

5.

© – Walt Disney

Toy Story

Release date: 1995

Consensus: “The animation was groundbreaking, but never had a cartoon been so intelligently and fantastically crafted, writing and voice performances alike.”

4.

© – Paramount Pictures

The Godfather: Part II

Release date: 1974

Consensus: “To be better than the first is an achievement in itself, but Part II drew us in to the centre of its harrowingly powerful, corrupted world and never let go.”

3.

© – Warner Bros

The Dark Knight

Release date: 2008

Consensus: “Heath Ledger’s performance as The Joker is arguably the finest of all time. Ultimately, The Dark Knight is more akin to a crime epic than a superhero film, cementing itself as a game changer in film history.”

2.

© – Columbia Pictures

The Shawshank Redemption

Release date: 1994

Consensus: “Poignant, gripping, remarkable; a tale of hope (which is a dangerous thing) led by the compelling duo of Robbins and Freeman.”

 

Number One is…

1. Forrest Gump

Release date: 1994

© – Paramount Pictures

From the opening “life is like a box of chocolates”, the world fell in love with Hanks’ portrayal of the titular Forrest Gump. We watch us this unwittingly important figure runs through significant moments in history, such as meeting JFK and serving in the Vietnam War (where he develops a mean knack for table tennis).

Flawlessly directed, scripted and acted, everyone involved helped create this incredible masterpiece. It walked along a dangerous line of being overly sentimental, but thankfully Spielberg kept a steady hand, carrying our hearts delicately throughout Gump’s journey. Combining genres such as comedy, romance, war, and drama, it is undoubtedly an epic for the ages. When you first watch it, you never know what you’re gonna get, but it’ll stay with you till the end of time.

That’s it. We hope you enjoyed the list, if you have any thoughts please let us know in the comments, on the Facebook page or tweet us. But, from all of us here at Film Swot, this is farewell. Thank you all for reading and sharing. My new site, The Write-Up, will be up soon, so keep an eye out for that. Rest assured, “I’ll be back”. 

Yours truly,

Cameron Frew

 

 

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