It’s been 10 years since the first release of the American Film Institute‘s Top 100 movies of our time list. Well now we have a new list (slightly changing my efforts to watch all 100 movies). Here’s some things of note of how the new list has changed from the last. (And as with all of my AFI 100 lists, movies in bold have been seen already.)
- From the originally released list, 78 still remain on the Top 100 list. What movies were dropped? See below.
- All Top 10 from the original list remained on the list, but were significantly rearranged; some losing their Top 10 placement.
- Of the Top 10, only one maintained its spot from 10 years ago: Citizen Kane.
- Raging Bull was added to the Top 10, breaking me streak of having seen all of them. I now have to make Raging Bull priority; but really did we need another boxing film?
- A sweeping surprise was the movement of The Searchers from #96 to #12 (passing by 84 other films). This solidifies a place in American film history for John Wayne and his contributions. However, I would’ve liked to see The Quiet Man added for selfish reasons since it’s one of my faves.
- Only four movies added to the list were actually filmed in the last decade, in spite of the 45 films added on the AFI 400 list.
Movies that dropped off the face of AFI
Twenty-two movies were dropped but fortunately only seven I’d seen (so really no big loss). I’ve included each movies placement on the old list, title and its year.
- (#54) All Quiet On The Western Front (1930)
- (#53) Amadeus (1984)
- (#68) An American In Paris (1951)
- (#92) A Place In The Sun (1951)
- (#44) The Birth Of A Nation (1915)
- (#64) Close Encounters Of The Third Kind (1977)
- (#75) Dances With Wolves (1990)
- (#39) Doctor Zhivago (1965)
- (#58) Fantasia (1940)
- (#87) Frankenstein (1931)
- (#52) From Here To Eternity (1953)
- (#82) Giant (1956)
- (#99) Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner (1967)
- (#90) The Jazz Singer (1927)
- (#67) The Manchurian Candidate (1962)
- (#86) Mutiny On The Bounty (1935)
- (#91) My Fair Lady (1964)
- (#89) Patton (1970)
- (#59) Rebel Without A Cause (1955)
- (#63) Stagecoach (1939)
- (#57) The Third Man (1949)
- (#73) Wuthering Heights (1939)
There were some big surprises for me for those that dropped off the list, including the seven I had already seen. First, Close Encounters Of The Third Kind is by far one of my favorite movies of all time. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it’s the mashed potato mountain sculptor in the middle of the living room or the cool music used to “communicate” with the aliens, but Richard Dryfus was so my hero.
Another surprise was the loss of Rebel Without A Cause. This is significant to me, for one, because I literally saw this just a few weeks ago, but also because it was the only film representing James Dean on the list and the iconic reputation he inherited with such a short time in the Hollywood.
Lastly, An American In Paris with all of its psychedelic imagery fell off the list. What was amazing about this film is that not only did Gene Kelly do some killer dance routines that carried the movie, but he choreographed it himself. That’s pretty amazing.
So what 22 films replaced the poor and destitute movies that fell off?
- (#77) All The President’s Men (1976)
- (#85) A Night At The Opera (1935)
- (#97) Blade Runner (1982)
- (#63) Cabaret (1972)
- (#96) Do The Right Thing (1989)
- (#18) The General (1928)
- (#75) In The Heat Of The Night (1967)
- (#49) Intolerance (1916)
- (#95) The Last Picture Show (1971)
- (#50) Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring (2001)
- (#59) Nashville (1976)
- (#71) Saving Private Ryan (1998)
- (#72) The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
- (#89) The Sixth Sense (1999)
- (#81) Spartacus (1960)
- (#61) Sullivan’s Travels (1941)
- (#82) Sunrise (1927)
- (#90) Swingtime (1936)
- (#83) Titantic (1997)
- (#99) Toy Story (1995)
- (#87) 12 Angry Men (1957)
- (#67) Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)
Of course, I’m pretty excited about the eight films I’ve already seen of the newly added. This inevitably moves my number of seen movies from 56 from the old list to 57 with the new. The Lord Of The Rings, The Shawshank Redemption, Cabaret and All The President’s Men all are great films that impacted film history.
New Top 10ers
With all the shifting, it was bound to happen that the Top 10 would move around. Some fell of the Top 10: The Graduate moved to #17 and On The Waterfront moved to #19. Raging Bull moved into the #4 spot and Vertigo into #9.
In the next 10 years
Of course, in another decade, we may discover many movies filmed in the past decade as more impactful than first thought. Movies will drop off as new and innovative techniques are used that shape the way we look at video stories. Time can only tell how the list will evolve. And hopefully by the next list, I’ll have watched all of these and will have less of challenge on my hands!