The folks at They Shoot Pictures, Don’t They have posted the latest annual compilation of the 250 best movies of the 21st century.
The top seven movies remain the same: In the Mood for Love, Mulholland Dr., Yi yi, Spirited Away, Werckmeister Harmonies, The Tree of Life, and There Will Be Blood. Russian Ark (#8) and Cache (#9) swap places from last year. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon works its way into the top ten, replacing Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. It is interesting that this list was created in part because the original Top 1000 of all time had gotten too predictable, with little chance for a film like In the Mood for Love to move past the Citizen Kanes of the film world, no matter how good. (It is, in fact, #58 on the big list.) Now, the 21st-century list, too, is beginning to solidify at the top. The top newcomer, Inside Llewyn Davis, only makes #114.
Nine movies have fallen off the list: Crash, O Brother Where Art Thou?, Star Spangled to Death, True Grit, 21 Grams, Up in the Air, The Wire, Wonder Boys, and You, the Living.
I have seen 155 of the 250 movies. The highest-ranked film I haven’t seen is Werckmeister Harmonies, but then, I’ve managed to avoid all of Bela Tarr’s movies so far.
Among my own favorite 21st-century films:
In the Mood for Love (#1 on the latest list), City of God (21), Y tu mamá también (28), A Separation (33), 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days (42), The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings (44), Pan’s Labyrinth (53), The Lives of Others (61), American Splendor (104), Time Out (134), The Hours (192), Before Midnight (201), and several that don’t make the top 250 list: Deliver Us from Evil, Lantana, Murder on a Sunday Morning, Red Cliff II, The Square, and Wit.
My least-favorite film on the list is probably Elephant (52).
When we did our 50 Favorite Films on Facebook, the highest-ranked film from the 21st century on my list was City of God at #20.