Sight and Sound Poll

Meet the elite: hand-picked highlights from the 2022 Sight and Sound 250 Greatest Films of All Time Poll.

Once every ten years, Sight and Sound magazine asks the most respected names in the business for a census of cinema’s best. The 2022 poll naming 250 films brings shock and delight, as seen in this prime selection from the definitive list.

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Comedy2019132 minsDirector: Bong Joon-ho

Bong Joon Ho's Oscar®-winning box-office sensation is a darkly comic, twisty rollercoaster ride.

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Fantasy199393 minsDirector: Sally Potter

Tilda Swinton stars in Sally Potter's dazzling interpretation of Virginia Woolf's novel.

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2001: A Space Odyssey2001: A Space Odyssey

Science Fiction1968149 minsDirector: Stanley Kubrick

Stanley Kubrick took science fiction cinema in a grandly intelligent new direction with this epic story of man’s quest for knowledge.

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The Wild BunchThe Wild Bunch

Western1969145 minsDirector: Sam Peckinpah

Peckinpah’s violent yet lyrical western is a nostalgic elegy for the passing of the Old West.

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Rio BravoRio Bravo

Western1958141 minsDirector: Howard Hawks

Hawks’ leisurely but surprisingly suspenseful chamber western mixes drama and comedy to create an unforgettable classic.

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The SearchersThe Searchers

Western1956119 minsDirector: John Ford

John Ford created perhaps the greatest of all westerns with this tale of a Civil War veteran doggedly hunting the Comanche who kidnapped his niece.

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North by NorthwestNorth by Northwest

Thriller1959136 minsDirector: Alfred Hitchcock

In Hitchcock’s iconic thriller, Cary Grant plays a man forced on the run across the US.

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Barry LyndonBarry Lyndon

Period drama1975185 minsDirector: Stanley Kubrick

Kubrick charts the rise and fall of an 18th-century charlatan as an acerbic study of self-destruction amid social ritual.

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The Third ManThe Third Man

Thriller1949105 minsDirector: Carol Reed

Carol Reed's timeless classic, one of the greatest British films, lavishly marries a perfect script, an unforgettable theme tune and the star power of Orson Welles.

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Gangster1990145 minsDirector: Martin Scorsese

Scorsese’s dazzling depiction of organised crime from the 50s to late 70s contains some of his most memorably stylish set-pieces.

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All About My MotherAll About My Mother

Drama1999101 minsDirector: Pedro Almodóvar

Almodóvar's dazzling study of grief, motherhood and female solidarity, winner of an Oscar® for Best Foreign Language Film.

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Drama2016111 minsDirector: Barry Jenkins

Winner of the 2017 Oscar for Best Picture (eventually!), Barry Jenkins’ intoxicating drama follows the furtive life of a gay black boy through 80s Miami.

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Romance1942103 minsDirector: Michael Curtiz

Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman star in the eternal story of love, loss and redemption; the ultimate testament to the brilliance of Golden Age Hollywood.

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Mulholland Dr.Mulholland Dr.

Thriller2001142 minsDirector: David Lynch

David Lynch’s beautifully baffling, surreal psychological thriller.

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Portrait of a Lady on FirePortrait of a Lady on Fire

Romance2019121 minsDirector: Céline Sciamma

Céline Sciamma’s BAFTA-nominated film about the tentative love between a painter and her subject in 18th-century France.

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Pierrot le FouPierrot le Fou

Crime1965110 minsDirector: Jean-Luc Godard

Godard’s stunning, colour widescreen account of the wild journey of ‘the last romantic couple’, Pierrot (Jean-Paul Belmondo) and his lover Marianne (Anna Karina).

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Apocalypse NowApocalypse Now

War1979141 minsDirector: Francis Ford Coppola

Transplanting Joseph Conrad’s colonial-era novel Heart of Darkness to Vietnam, Coppola created a mesmerising fantasia on the spectacle of war.

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The ShiningThe Shining

Horror1980144 minsDirector: Stanley Kubrick

Jack Nicholson revels in his terrifying performance as Jack Torrance, the would-be writer who becomes the minotaur trapped in Kubrick’s supernatural maze.

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Breathless [À bout de souffle]Breathless [À bout de souffle]

Film noir196090 minsDirector: Jean-Luc Godard

Jean-Luc Godard’s extraordinary debut feature, an insouciant and iconoclastic crime film that paved the way for the French New Wave.

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Under the SkinUnder the Skin

Horror2014108 minsDirector: Jonathan Glazer

An alien Scarlett Johansson prowls the streets of Glasgow in Jonathan Glazer’s astonishing, mind-bending mixture of existential sci-fi and inner-city realism.

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Singin' in the RainSingin' in the Rain

Comedy1951103 minsDirector: Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen

Hollywood’s troubled transition from silent to talking pictures at the end of the 1920s provided the inspiration for this greatest of movie musicals.

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The Life and Death of Colonel BlimpThe Life and Death of Colonel Blimp

War1943164 minsDirector: Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger

Powell and Pressburger’s masterpiece follows the rise and fall of a career soldier, from dashing and brave young officer in the Boer War to a pompous and old-fashioned Colonel by the time of World War Two.

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A Canterbury TaleA Canterbury Tale

War1944125 minsDirector: Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger

Powell and Pressburger's most personal film combines a Chaucer-inspired pilgrimage with a war-time celebration of English landscape and values to create a gem of British cinema.

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Napoléon Pt 2Napoléon Pt 2

Biopic1927156 minsSilentDirector: Abel Gance

Abel Gance’s silent epic, one of the most magnificent spectacles in all cinema is finally restored in this stunning new digital restoration.

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Drama1985154 minsDirector: Akira Kurosawa

Akira Kurosawa’s visually spectacular epic transplants Shakespeare’s King Lear from Celtic Britain to feudal Japan.

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Red DesertRed Desert

Drama1964117 minsDirector: Michelangelo Antonioni

Antonioni's mid-career masterpiece stars Monica Vitti as an emotionally anguished young woman embarking on a tentative affair with a businessman (Richard Harris).

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Le MéprisLe Mépris

Drama1963103 minsDirector: Jean-Luc Godard

Jean-Luc Godard conducts an autopsy of love and the creative process, as a boorish film producer dismantles a seemingly strong marriage.

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Napoléon Pt 1Napoléon Pt 1

Biopic1927177 minsSilentDirector: Abel Gance

Abel Gance’s silent epic, one of the most magnificent spectacles in all cinema is finally restored in this stunning new digital restoration.

Explore the Sight and Sound Poll Top 101-250 Greatest Films in our Subscription collection.

Explore the Sight and Sound Poll Top 100 Greatest Films in our Subscription collection.