Sight and Sound Top Ten Movies

Sight and Sound magazine, published by the BFI, have just announced their Top Ten Poll 2002. This has been published every ten years since 1952, conducted by polling film critics around the world. An additional poll among directors has also taken place for the last couple of times.

There has been some press comment (sorry no links) about how hackneyed this list is. Once again Citizen Kane tops both polls, although Vertigo seems to have run it a close second among critics. Yes it’s a little dull that it has topped the charts so regularly, but if it’s the best it’s the best and there’s nothing else to top it. Fashions have changed over the years, and will continue to do so, but until they change dramatically…

Another criticism thrown at it is the lack of recent films. The critics list only reaches 1974 with The Godfather Part II, while the directors get up to 1980 with Raging Bull. But can you name a film made in the last 20 years that would honestly merit its place? We can all name more popular films – Star Wars, ET, Titanic, Gladiator, Raiders of the Lost Ark, etc. They’re all excellent films in their own ways, but the best ever? Absolutely not. I think that it takes time to establish a film in a list like this, so possibly in 10 or 20 years we’ll see some more modern films filtering through – but what’s the rush?