List: Top 10 Films Of Every Year, By Year Of Production

I thought I’d keep something I could update on a semi-regular basis on here, showing my favourite films from each calendar year, separated by year of production (differing from my end-of-year lists, which favour UK release). I’m going back as far as 1940 for now, largely because the number of films per year that I’ve seen before that starts to rapidly diminish (and you’ll note that filling out a top 10 isn’t quite achieved in some cases). That’s something I hope to rectify over time, and hopefully I’ll eventually update this page, stretching further into the past. It’s an idea I’ve stolen wholesale from Vadim Rizov, whose intellectual integrity when writing about film is downright intimidating. Anyway, here’s where I am right now.

 

1940

  1. The Shop Around the Corner (Ernst Lubitsch)
  2. Rebecca (Alfred Hitchcock)
  3. The Mortal Storm (Frank Borzage)
  4. The Great Dictator (Charlie Chaplin)
  5. His Girl Friday (Howard Hawks)
  6. The Philadelphia Story (George Cukor)
  7. My Favourite Wife (Garson Kanin)
  8. When the Daltons Rode (George Marshall)
  9. Dance, Girl, Dance (Dorothy Arzner)
  10. Too Many Husbands (Wesley Ruggles)

1941

  1. Sullivan’s Travels (Preston Sturges)
  2. Ball of Fire (Howard Hawks)
  3. Hellzapoppin’ (H.C. Potter)
  4. How Green Was My Valley (John Ford)
  5. Citizen Kane (Orson Welles)
  6. The Lady Eve (Preston Sturges)
  7. The Maltese Falcon (John Huston)
  8. Suspicion (Alfred Hitchcock)
  9. Meet John Doe (Frank Capra)
  10. Brothers and Sisters of the Toda Family (Yasujiro Ozu)
NV
Now, Voyager

1942

  1. Now, Voyager (Irving Rapper)
  2. The Ox-Bow Incident (William A Wellman)
  3. Cat People (Jacques Tourneur)
  4. The Palm Beach Story (Preston Sturges)
  5. There Was A Father (Yasujiro Ozu)
  6. Casablanca (Michael Curtiz)
  7. Saboteur (Alfred Hitchcock)
  8. To Be or Not to Be (Ernst Lubitsch)
  9. Mrs Miniver (William Wyler)
  10. You Were Never Lovelier (William A Seiter)

1943

  1. Le Corbeau (Henri-Georges Clouzot)
  2. Shadow of a Doubt (Alfred Hitchcock)
  3. I Walked With a Zombie (Jacques Tourneur)
  4. The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger)
  5. The Leopard Man (Jacques Tourneur)
  6. Hangmen Also Die! (Fritz Lang)
  7. The Seventh Victim (Mark Robson)
  8. Stormy Weather (Andrew L Stone)
  9. Cabin in the Sky (Vincente Minnelli / Busby Berkeley)
  10. Son of Dracula (Robert Siodmak)

1944

  1. Double Indemnity (Billy Wilder)
  2. The Curse of the Cat People (Robert Wise, Gunther von Fritsch)
  3. Christmas Holiday (Robert Siodmak)
  4. Gaslight (George Cukor)
  5. Laura (Otto Preminger)
  6. A Canterbury Tale (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger)
  7. To Have and Have Not (Howard Hawks)
  8. Murder, My Sweet (Edward Dmytryk)
  9. The Uninvited (Lewis Allen)
  10. The Lodger (John Brahm)
Leave Her To Heaven
Leave Her To Heaven

1945

  1. Leave Her to Heaven (John M Stahl)
  2. Mildred Pierce (Michael Curtiz)
  3. Brief Encounter (David Lean)
  4. Detour (Edgar G Ulmer)
  5. The Lost Weekend (Billy Wilder)
  6. Anchors Aweigh (George Sidney)
  7. My Name is Julia Ross (Joseph H Lewis)
  8. Dead of Night (Richard Hamer, Basil Dearden, Alberto Cavalcanti, Charles Crichton)
  9. Strange Illusion (Edgar G Ulmer)

1946

  1. The Postman Always Rings Twice (Tay Garnett)
  2. The Best Years of Our Lives (William Wyler)
  3. The Big Sleep (Howard Hawks)
  4. Let There Be Light (John Huston)
  5. The Strange Love of Martha Ives (Lewis Milestone)
  6. It’s A Wonderful Life (Frank Capra)
  7. The Dark Mirror (Robert Siodmak)
  8. Panique (Julien Duvivier)
  9. The Killers (Robert Siodmak)
  10. A Matter of Life and Death (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger)

1947

  1. Black Narcissus (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger)
  2. The Lady From Shanghai (Orson Welles)
  3. Odd Man Out (Carol Reed)
  4. The Woman on the Beach (Jean Renoir)
  5. Out of the Past (Jacques Tourneur)
  6. Secret Beyond the Door (Fritz Lang)
  7. Crossfire (Edward Dmytryk)
  8. Down to Earth (Alexander Hall)
  9. Ramrod (Andre de Toth)
  10. Nightmare Alley (Edmund Goulding)

1948

  1. Yellow Sky (William A Wellman)
  2. A Hen in the Wind (Yasujiro Ozu)
  3. The Red Shoes (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger)
  4. Pitfall (Andre de Toth)
  5. The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (John Huston)
  6. Fort Apache (John Ford)
  7. A Foreign Affair (Billy Wilder)
  8. Raw Deal (Anthony Mann)
  9. Portrait of Jennie (William Dieterle)
  10. Sorry, Wrong Number (Anatole Litvak)

1949

  1. Late Spring (Yasujiro Ozu)
  2. D.O.A. (Rudolph Maté)
  3. The Heiress (William Wyler)
  4. Kind Hearts and Coronets (Robert Hamer)
  5. The Third Man (Carol Reed)
  6. On the Town (Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly)
  7. Colorado Territory (Raoul Walsh)
  8. Thirst (Ingmar Bergman)
  9. Border Incident (Anthony Mann)
  10. I Shot Jesse James (Samuel Fuller)
Furies
The Furies

1950

  1. The Furies (Anthony Mann)
  2. Winchester ’73 (Anthony Mann)
  3. Sunset Blvd. (Billy Wilder)
  4. Gun Crazy (Joseph H Lewis)
  5. Rashomon (Akira Kurosawa)
  6. In a Lonely Place (Nicholas Ray)
  7. Woman on the Run (Norman Foster)
  8. No Man of Her Own (Michael Leisen)
  9. Broken Arrow (Delmer Daves)
  10. To Joy (Ingmar Bergman)

1951

  1. Fixed Bayonets! (Samuel Fuller)
  2. The Tales of Hoffman (Michael Powell, Emeric Pressburger)
  3. Early Summer (Yasujiro Ozu)
  4. Diary of a Country Priest (Robert Bresson)
  5. Alice in Wonderland (Clyde Geronimi, Wilfred Jackson)
  6. Awaara (Raj Kapoor)
  7. The Steel Helmet (Samuel Fuller)
  8. The Day The Earth Stood Still (Robert Wise)
  9. Ace in the Hole (Billy Wilder)
  10. The Thing From Another World (Christian Nyby)

1952

  1. Umberto D. (Vittorio De Sica)
  2. Singin’ in the Rain (Stanley Donen, Gene Kelly)
  3. The Life of Oharu (Kenji Mizoguchi)
  4. The Flavour of Green Tea Over Rice (Yasujiro Ozu)
  5. Ikiru (Akira Kurosawa)
  6. Bend of the River (Anthony Mann)
  7. The Lusty Men (Nicholas Ray)
  8. Rancho Notorious (Fritz Lang)
  9. Has Anybody Seen My Gal? (Douglas Sirk)
  10. The Big Sky (Howard Hawks)
The Naked Spur
The Naked Spur

1953

  1. The Naked Spur (Anthony Mann)
  2. Tokyo Story (Yasujro Ozu)
  3. Pickup on South Street (Samuel Fuller)
  4. The Hitch-Hiker (Ida Lupino)
  5. Sawdust and Tinsel (Ingmar Bergman)
  6. Calamity Jane (David Butler)
  7. Hiroshima (Hideo Sekigawa)
  8. Niagara (Bob Gosse)
  9. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Howard Hawks)
  10. Summer with Monika (Ingmar Bergman)
Godzilla 1954
Godzilla

1954

  1. Godzilla (Ishirô Honda)
  2. Johnny Guitar (Nicholas Ray)
  3. Magnificent Obsession (Douglas Sirk)
  4. Dial M for Murder (Alfred Hitchcock)
  5. Crime Wave (Andre de Toth)
  6. La Strada (Federico Fellini)
  7. Touchez Pas au Grisbi (Jacques Becker)
  8. Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa)
  9. Rear Window (Alfred Hitchcock)
  10. Human Desire (Fritz Lang)

1955

  1. The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton)
  2. Rebel Without a Cause (Nicholas Ray)
  3. All That Heaven Allows (Douglas Sirk)
  4. Diabolique (Henri-Georges Clouzot)
  5. Lola Montès (Max Ophüls)
  6. The Big Combo (Joseph H Lewis)
  7. Pather Panchali (Satyajit Ray)
  8. Kiss Me Deadly (Robert Aldrich)
  9. House of Bamboo (Samuel Fuller)
  10. There’s Always Tomorrow (Douglas Sirk)
Aparajito

1956

  1. Aparajito (Satyajit Ray)
  2. Giant (George Stevens)
  3. Early Spring (Yasujiro Ozu)
  4. A Man Escaped (Robert Bresson)
  5. Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray)
  6. The Killing (Stanley Kubrick)
  7. Bob le Flambeur (Jean-Pierre Melville)
  8. Written on the Wind (Douglas Sirk)
  9. The Burmese Harp (Kon Ichikawa)
  10. The Bad Seed (Mervyn LeRoy)

1957

  1. The Cranes are Flying (Mikhail Kalatozov)
  2. The Tarnished Angels (Douglas Sirk)
  3. The Tall T (Budd Boetticher)
  4. Throne of Blood (Akira Kurosawa) 
  5. Nights of Cabiria (Federico Fellini)
  6. Night of the Demon (Jacques Tourneur)
  7. 12 Angry Men (Sidney Lumet)
  8. 3:10 to Yuma (Delmer Daves)
  9. Tokyo Twilight (Yasujiro Ozu)
  10. Pyaasa (Guru Dutt)

1958

  1. Equinox Flower (Yasujio Ozu) 
  2. A Time to Love and a Time to Die (Douglas Sirk)
  3. Touch of Evil (Orson Welles)
  4. Vertigo (Alfred Hitchcock)
  5. Cairo Station (Youssef Chahine)
  6. The Music Room (Satyajit Ray)
  7. The Big Country (William Wyler)
  8. Shadows (John Cassevetes)
  9. Elevator to the Gallows (Louis Malle)
  10. The Boy Who Came Back (Seijun Suzuki)

1959

  1. The Human Condition II: Road to Eternity (Masaki Kobayashi)
  2. Day of the Outlaw (André de Toth)
  3. The Human Condition I: No Greater Love (Masaki Kobayashi)
  4. Suddenly, Last Summer (Joseph L. Mankiewicz)
  5. The Crimson Kimono (Samuel Fuller)
  6. Some Like It Hot (Billy Wilder)
  7. Apur Sansar (Satyajit Ray)
  8. Hiroshima Mon Amour (Alain Resnais)
  9. Good Morning (Yasujiro Ozu)
  10. The Wayward Girl (Edith Carlmar)
L’Avventura

1960

  1. L’Avventura (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  2. Devi (Satyajit Ray)
  3. La Dolce Vita (Federico Fellini)
  4. Eyes without a Face (Georges Franju)
  5. Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock)
  6. The Virgin Spring (Ingmar Bergman)
  7. The Apartment (Billy Wilder)
  8. The Good Girls (Claude Chabrol)
  9. Beat Girl (Edmond T Gréville)
  10. Village of the Damned (Wolf Rilla)

1961

  1. Mother Joan of the Angels (Jerzy Kawalerowicz)
  2. Through a Glass Darkly (Ingmar Bergman)
  3. La Notte (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  4. Léon Morin, Priest (Jean-Pierre Melville) 
  5. The Hustler (Robert Rossen) 
  6. The Children’s Hour (William Wyler)
  7. Viridiana (Luis Bunuel)
  8. Last Year at Marienbad (Alain Resnais)
  9. A Taste of Honey (Tony Richardson)
  10. The Misfits (John Huston)

1962

  1. Harakiri (Masaki Kobayashi) 
  2. Vivre Sa Vie (Jean-Luc Godard)
  3. Carnival of Souls (Herk Harvey)
  4. L’Eclisse (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  5. Cape Fear (J Lee Thompson)
  6. Sanjuro (Akira Kurosawa)
  7. Lolita (Stanley Kubrick)
  8. The Exterminating Angel (Luis Bunuel)
  9. Cleo from 5 to 7 (Agnes Varda) 
  10. The Trial (Orson Welles)
The Leopard
The Leopard

1963

  1. The Leopard (Luchino Visconti)
  2. The Silence (Ingmar Bergman)
  3. Judex (Georges Franju)
  4. Shock Corridor (Samuel Fuller)
  5. 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini)
  6. Le Mepris (Jean-Luc Godard)
  7. Kiss of the Vampire (Don Sharp)
  8. Hud (Martin Ritt)
  9. Cleopatra (Joseph L. Mankiewicz, Rouben Mamoulian)
  10. The Servant (Joseph Losey)

1964

  1. Red Desert (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  2. The Gospel According to Matthew (Pier Paolo Pasolini)
  3. Onibaba (Kaneto Shindō)
  4. The Naked Kiss (Samuel Fuller)
  5. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (Jacques Demy)
  6. The Pumpkin Eater (Jack Clayton)
  7. Woman in the Dunes (Hiroshi Teshigahara)
  8. My Fair Lady (George Cukor)
  9. Dr. Strangelove: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (Stanley Kubrick)
  10. The Train (John Frankenheimer)
Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!
Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill!

1965

  1. Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (Russ Meyer)
  2. Juliet of the Spirits (Federico Fellini)
  3. Le Bonheur (Agnes Varda)
  4. Pierrot le Fou (Jean-Luc Godard) 
  5. Sandra (Luchino Visconti)
  6. Repulsion (Roman Polanski)
  7. For a Few Dollars More (Sergio Leone)
  8. Alphaville (Jean-Luc Godard) 
  9. Vinyl (Andy Warhol) 
  10. Mudhoney (Russ Meyer)
Daisies
Daisies

1966

  1. Daisies (Vera Chytilová)
  2. The Nun (Jacques Rivette)
  3. Persona (Ingmar Bergman)
  4. Au hasard Balthazar (Robert Bresson)
  5. Red Angel (Yasuzo Masumura)
  6. The Battle of Algiers (Gillo Pontecovo)
  7. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Sergio Leone)
  8. Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (Mike Nichols)
  9. Blow-Up (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  10. Black Girl (Ousmane Sembène)

1967

  1. Viy (Georgi Keopachyov, Konstantin Yershov)
  2. In Cold Blood (Richard Brooks)
  3. Branded to Kill (Seijun Suzuki)
  4. La Chinoise (Jean-Luc Godard)
  5. Mouchette (Robert Bresson)
  6. Le Samouraï (Jean-Pierre Melville)
  7. Dragon Inn (King Hu)
  8. Inflatable Sex Doll of the Wastelands (Atsushi Yamatoya)
  9. Samurai Rebellion (Masaki Kobayashi)
  10. Weekend (Jean-Luc Godard)

1968

  1. Night of the Living Dead (George A Romero)
  2. 2001: A Space Odyssey (Stanley Kubrick)
  3. The Lion in Winter (Anthony Harvey)
  4. Mandabi (Ousmane Sembène)
  5. Kuroneko (Kaneti Shindo)
  6. Outlaw Gangster VIP (Toshio Masuda)
  7. Rosemary’s Baby (Roman Polanski)
  8. La Prisonniere (Henri-Georges Clouzot)
  9. Funny Girl (William Wyler)
  10. Black Panthers (Agnes Varda)
Funeral Parade of Roses
Funeral Parade of Roses

1969

  1. Funeral Parade of Roses (Toshio Matsumoto)
  2. Blind Beast (Yasuzo Masumura)
  3. Salesman (Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Charlotte Zwerin)
  4. Fellini Satyricon (Federico Fellini)
  5. Model Shop (Jacques Demy)
  6. Army of Shadows (Jean-Pierre Melville) 
  7. Eros + Massacre (Kiju Yoshida)
  8. Orgies of Edo (Teruo Ishii)
  9. Sweet Charity (Bob Fosse)
  10. The Cow (Deriush Mehrjui) 

1970

  1. The Things of Life (Claude Sautet)
  2. The Vampire Lovers (Roy Ward Baker)
  3. Valerie and her Week of Wonders (Jaromil Jares)
  4. Dream No Evil (John Hayes)
  5. Ucho [The Ear] (Karel Kachyna) 
  6. Gimme Shelter (Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Charlotte Zwerin)
  7. Catch-22 (Mike Nichols)
  8. Brewster McCloud (Robert Altman)
  9. Wanda (Barbara Loden)
  10. Zabriskie Point (Michelangelo Antonioni) 

1971

  1. Klute (Alan J Pakula)
  2. Out 1 (Jacques Rivette)
  3. A New Leaf (Elaine May)
  4. The Shiver of the Vampires (Jean Rollin)
  5. Let’s Scare Jessica to Death (John D. Hancock)
  6. Death in Venice (Luchino Visconti)
  7. McCabe & Mrs Miller (Robert Altman)
  8. Vanishing Point (Richard C Sarafian)
  9. Punishment Park (Peter Watkins)
  10. Lake of Dracula (Michio Yamamoto)
fpsj41
Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41

1972

  1. Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41 (Shunya Ito)
  2. Your Vice is a Locked Room and Only I Have the Key (Sergio Martino)
  3. The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
  4. Poem (Akio Jissoji)
  5. What Have You Done to Solange? (Massimo Dallamano)
  6. Female Prisoner 701: Scorpion (Shunya Ito)
  7. The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-In-The-Moon Marigolds (Paul Newman)
  8. Toys Are Not For Children (Stanley H Brassloff)
  9. Season of the Witch (George A. Romero)
  10. Lone Wolf and Cub: Baby Cart at the River Styx (Kenji Misume)

1973

  1. Coffy (Jack Hill)
  2. Messiah of Evil (Willard Huyck, Gloria Katz)
  3. Female Prisoner Scorpion: Beast Stable (Shunya Ito)
  4. Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
  5. Belladonna of Sadness (Eiichi Yamamoto)
  6. The Wicker Man (Robin Hardy)
  7. Serpico (Sidney Lumet)
  8. Ganja & Hess (Bill Gunn)
  9. Torso (Sergio Martino)
  10. Day for Night (Francois Truffaut)
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre

1974

  1. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (Tobe Hooper)
  2. Céline and Julie Go Boating (Jacques Rivette) 
  3. Edvard Munch (Peter Watkins)
  4. The Swinging Cheerleaders (Jack Hill)
  5. A Woman Under the Influence (John Cassavetes)
  6. The Conversation (Francis Ford Coppola)
  7. Hearts and Minds (Peter Davis)
  8. Chinatown (Roman Polanski)
  9. Female Trouble (John Waters)
  10. The Parallax View (Alan J Pakula)

1975

  1. Jaws (Steven Spielberg)
  2. Nashville (Robert Altman)
  3. Barry Lyndon (Stanley Kubrick)
  4. Jeanne Dielman, 23, Quai du Commerce 1080 Bruxelles (Chantal Akerman)
  5. Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir)
  6. Mirror (Andrei Tarkovsky)
  7. Dog Day Afternoon (Sidney Lumet)
  8. French Connection II (John Frankenheimer)
  9. Three Days of the Condor (Sydney Pollack)
  10. The Passenger (Michelangelo Antonioni)

1976

  1. Duelle (une quarantine) (Jacques Rivette)
  2. Harlan County, U.S.A (Barbara Kopple)
  3. The Witch Who Came from the Sea (Matt Cimber)
  4. Chinese Roulette (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
  5. News from Home (Chantal Akerman)
  6. Taxi Driver (Martin Scorsese)
  7. The Man Who Fell to Earth (Nicolas Roeg)
  8. The Pom Pom Girls (Joseph Ruben)
  9. Dark August (Martin Goldman)
  10. In the Realm of the Senses (Nagisa Oshima)
3 Women
3 Women

1977

  1. 3 Women (Robert Altman)
  2. The Ascent (Larisa Sheptiko)
  3. One Sings, the Other Doesn’t (Agnès Varda) 
  4. The Child (Robert Voskanian)
  5. Eraserhead (David Lynch)
  6. That Obscure Object of Desire (Luis Bunuel)
  7. A Special Day (Ettore Scola)
  8. Gay USA (Arthur J Bressan Jr.)
  9. Suspiria (Dario Argento)
  10. Rabid (David Cronenberg)

1978

  1. Halloween (John Carpenter)
  2. Girlfriends (Claudia Weill)
  3. Autumn Sonata (Ingmar Bergman)
  4. Days of Heaven (Terrence Malick)
  5. Killer of Sheep (Charles Burnett)
  6. Fedora (Billy Wilder)
  7. The Deer Hunter (Michael Cimino)
  8. The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (Liu Chia-Laing)
  9. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Philip Kaufman)
  10. The Shout (Jerzy Skolimowski)
alien
Alien

1979

  1. Alien (Ridley Scott)
  2. Apocalypse Now (Francis Ford Coppola)
  3. Legend of the Mountain (King Hu)
  4. Stalker (Andrei Tarkovsky)
  5. Nosferatu the Vampyre (Werner Herzog)
  6. The Marriage of Maria Braun (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
  7. My Brilliant Career (Gillian Armstrong)
  8. The China Syndrome (James Bridges)
  9. The Warriors (Walter Hill)
  10. Being There (Hal Ashby)

1980

  1. The Fog (John Carpenter)
  2. The Shining (Stanley Kubrick)
  3. Airplane! (David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, Jerry Zucker)
  4. 9 to 5 (Colin Higgins)
  5. Inferno (Dario Argento)
  6. Babylon (Franco Rosso)
  7. The Big Red One (Samuel Fuller)
  8. Cruising (William Friedkin)
  9. The Blues Brothers (John Landis)
  10. The Elephant Man (David Lynch)
Ms. 45
Ms. 45

1981

  1. Ms. 45 (Abel Ferrara)
  2. Halloween II (Rick Rosenthal)
  3. One from the Heart (Francis Ford Coppola)
  4. Kagero-Za (Seijun Suzuki)
  5. Possession (Andrzej Zulawski)
  6. Blow Out (Brian De Palma)
  7. Body Heat (Lawrence Kasdan)
  8. An American Werewolf in London (John Landis)
  9. Sailor Suit and Machine Gun (Shinji Sômai)
  10. Thief (Michael Mann)

1982

  1. The Thing (John Carpenter)
  2. Querelle (Rainer Werner Fassbinder)
  3. Blade Runner (Ridley Scott)
  4. A Good Marriage (Éric Rohmer)
  5. White Dog (Samuel Fuller)
  6. Come Back to the 5 and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (Robert Altman)
  7. The King of Comedy (Martin Scorsese)
  8. Boat People (Ann Hui)
  9. Eating Raoul (Paul Bartel)
  10. Smithereens (Susan Seidelman)
Videodrome

1983

  1. Videodrome (David Cronenberg)
  2. Burroughs: The Movie (Howard Brookner)
  3. The Hunger (Tony Scott)
  4. Pauline at the Beach (Éric Rohmer)
  5. Born in Flames (Lizzie Borden)
  6. Dark Habits (Pedro Almodóvar)
  7. A nos Amours (Maurice Pialat)
  8. Sans Soleil (Chris Marker)
  9. Psycho II (Richard Franklin)
  10. Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (Nagisa Oshima)

1984

  1. Stop Making Sense (Jonathan Demme)
  2. Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (Hayao Miyazaki)
  3. The Terminator (James Cameron)
  4. Body Double (Brian De Palma)
  5. Special Effects (Larry Cohen)
  6. Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders)
  7. Diary for my Children (Márta Mészáros)
  8. Blood Simple (Joel Coen)
  9. The Times of Harvey Milk (Rob Epstein)
  10. Full Moon in Paris (Éric Rohmer)

1985

  1. Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (Paul Schrader)
  2. Desert Hearts (Donna Deitch)
  3. Ran (Akira Kurosawa)
  4. Tampopo (Juzo Itami)
  5. Desperately Seeking Susan (Susan Siedelman)
  6. Pale Rider (Clint Eastwood)
  7. Vagabond (Agnes Varda)
  8. Fool For Love (Robert Altman)
  9. To Live and Die in LA (William Friedkin)
  10. Clue (Jonathan Lynn)
Working Girls
Working Girls

1986

  1. Working Girls (Lizzie Borden)
  2. Blue Velvet (David Lynch)
  3. The Green Ray (Éric Rohmer)
  4. The Sacrifice (Andrei Tarkovsky)
  5. Aliens (James Cameron)
  6. Mauvais Sang (Leos Carax)
  7. Terrorizers (Edward Yang)
  8. Positive I.D. (Andy Anderson)
  9. True Stories (David Byrne)
  10. Down By Law (Jim Jarmusch)

1987

  1. Where is the Friend’s House? (Abbas Kiarostami)
  2. Daughter of the Nile (Hou Hsiao-Hsien)
  3. Four Adventures of Reinette and Mirabelle (Éric Rohmer)
  4. Diary for my Loves (Márta Mészáros)
  5. Housekeeping (Bill Forsyth)
  6. China Girl (Abel Ferrara)
  7. Family Viewing (Atom Egoyan)
  8. Full Metal Jacket (Stanley Kubrick)
  9. Hellraiser (Clive Barker)
  10. Robocop (Paul Verhoeven)

1988

  1. My Neighbour Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki)
  2. Dead Ringers (David Cronenberg)
  3. As Tears Go By (Wong Kar Wai)
  4. Akira (Katsuhiro Otomo)
  5. Hellbound: Hellraiser II (Tony Randel)
  6. The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris)
  7. Scrooged (Richard Donner)
  8. Cinema Paradiso (Guiseppe Tornatore)
  9. Vampire’s Kiss (Robert Bierman)
  10. A Short Film About Love (Krzysztof Kieslowski)
My Twentieth Century

1989

  1. My Twentieth Century (Ildikó Enyedi)
  2. Tetsuo: the Iron Man (Shinya Tsukamoto)
  3. Do The Right Thing (Spike Lee)
  4. For All Mankind (Al Reinert)
  5. The Cook, The Thief, His Wife and Her Lover (Peter Greenaway)
  6. Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki)
  7. Speaking Parts (Atom Egoyan)
  8. sex, lies and videotape (Steven Soderbergh)
  9. Homework (Abbas Kiarostami)
  10. Society (Brian Yuzna)

1990

  1. Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami)
  2. The Exorcist III (William Peter Blatty)
  3. Miller’s Crossing (Joel Coen)
  4. Gremlins 2: The New Batch (Joe Dante)
  5. Wild at Heart (David Lynch)
  6. To Sleep With Anger (Charles Burnett) 
  7. Paris is Burning (Jennie Livingston)
  8. The Hot Spot (Dennis Hopper)
  9. Cry-Baby (John Waters)
  10. Days of Being Wild (Wong Kar Wai)

1991

  1. The Silence of the Lambs (Jonathan Demme)
  2. Night on Earth (Jim Jarmusch)
  3. The Lovers on the Bridge (Léos Carax)
  4. Boyz N The Hood (John Singleton)
  5. The Stranger (Satyajit Ray) 
  6. Jacquot de Nantes (Agnès Varda)
  7. Yumeji (Seijun Suzuki) 
  8. Heart of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse (Fax Behr, Eleanor Coppola, George Hickenlooper)
  9. Raise the Red Lantern (Zhang Yimou)
  10. A Brighter Summer Day (Edward Yang)

1992

  1. Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (David Lynch)
  2. And Life Goes On (Abbas Kiarostami)
  3. Candyman (Bernard Rose)
  4. Orlando (Sally Potter)
  5. Rebels of the Neon God (Tsai Ming-liang)
  6. Tetsuo II: Body Hammer (Shinya Tsukamoto)
  7. Light Sleeper (Paul Schrader)
  8. The Player (Robert Altman)
  9. Alien³ (David Fincher)
  10. Gas, Food Lodging (Alison Anders)
8 Dazed And Confused
Dazed And Confused

1993

  1. Dazed and Confused (Richard Linklater)
  2. Three Colours: Blue (Krzysztof Kieslowski)
  3. The Age of Innocence (Martin Scorsese) 
  4. Patlabor 2 (Mamoru Oshii)
  5. Jurassic Park (Steven Spielberg)
  6. Menace II Society (Albert Hughes, Allen Hughes)
  7. Philadelphia (Jonathan Demme)
  8. Body Snatchers (Abel Ferrara)
  9. Farewell My Concubine (Chen Kaige)
  10. Calendar (Atom Egoyan)

1994

  1. Sátántangó (Béla Tarr)
  2. Amateur (Hal Hartley)
  3. Exotica (Atom Egoyan)
  4. Vive L’Amour (Tsai Ming-liang)
  5. Three Colours: Red (Krzysztof Kieslowski)
  6. Chungking Express (Wong Kar Wai)
  7. Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino)
  8. Nadja (Michael Almereyda)
  9. Hoop Dreams (Steve James)
  10. The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert (Stephan Elliott)

1995

  1. Maborosi (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  2. Fallen Angels (Wong Kar Wai)
  3. Tales from the Hood (Rusty Cundieff)
  4. The Addiction (Abel Ferrara)
  5. Clockers (Spike Lee)
  6. Before Sunrise (Richard Linklater)
  7. Safe (Todd Haynes) 
  8. Ghost in the Shell (Mamoru Oshii)
  9. The Bridges of Madison County (Clint Eastwood)
  10. To Die For (Gus Van Sant) 

15 Crash1996

  1. Crash (David Cronenberg)
  2. Irma Vep (Olivier Assayas)
  3. Bound (Lana Wachowski, Lily Wachowski)
  4. Gabbeh (Mohsen Makhmalbaf)
  5. Fargo (Joel Coen)
  6. Set it Off (F Gary Gray)
  7. The Funeral (Abel Ferrara)
  8. Grace Of My Heart (Allison Anders)
  9. Nenette and Boni (Claire Denis)
  10. Kansas City (Robert Altman)

1997

  1. Romy & Michele’s High School Reunion (David Mirkin)
  2. Cure (Kiyoshi Kurosawa)
  3. Lost Highway (David Lynch)
  4. Princess Mononoke (Hayao Miyazaki)
  5. Perfect Blue (Satoshi Kon)
  6. I Know What You Did Last Summer (Jim Gillespie)
  7. Taste of Cherry (Abbas Kiarostami)
  8. Affliction (Paul Schrader)
  9. The Small Town (Nuri Bilge Ceylan)
  10. Funny Games (Michaek Haneke)

1998

  1. After Life (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  2. Bride of Chucky (Ronny Yu)
  3. The Apple (Samira Makhmalbaf)
  4. New Rose Hotel (Abel Ferrara)
  5. Wild Things (John McNaughton)
  6. The Big Lebowski (Joel Coen)
  7. The Thin Red Line (Terrence Malick)
  8. Flowers of Shanghai (Hou Hsiao-Hsien)
  9. Show Me Love (Lukas Moodysson)
  10. Ring (Hideo Nakata)
Beau Travail

1999

  1. Beau Travail (Claire Denis)
  2. Audition (Takashi Miike)
  3. eXistenZ (David Cronenberg)
  4. Eyes Wide Shut (Stanley Kubrick)
  5. The Virgin Suicides (Sofia Coppola)
  6. The Wind Will Carry Us (Abbas Kiarostami)
  7. The Straight Story (David Lynch)
  8. Drop Dead Gorgeous (Michael Patrick Jann)
  9. Not One Less (Zhang Yimou)
  10. But I’m A Cheerleader (Jamie Babbit)

2000

  1. Cecil B. Demented (John Waters)
  2. In The Mood for Love (Wong Kar-Wai)
  3. Bamboozled (Spike Lee)
  4. Ginger Snaps (John Fawcett)
  5. Yi Yi (Edward Yang)
  6. Shadow of the Vampire (E. Elias Merhige)
  7. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Ang Lee)
  8. Dancer in the Dark (Lars Von Trier)
  9. Memento (Christopher Nolan)
  10. Battle Royale (Kinji Fukasaku)
Mulholland Drive 5
Mulholland Drive

2001

  1. Mulholland Drive (David Lynch)
  2. What Time is it There? (Tsai Ming-liang)
  3. Josie and the Pussycats (Deborah Kaplan, Harry Elfont)
  4. The Man Who Wasn’t There (Joel Coen)
  5. Ghost World (Terry Zwigoff) 
  6. Pulse (Kiyoshi Kurosawa)
  7. Millennium Mambo (Hou Hsiao-Hsien)
  8. Trouble Every Day (Claire Denis)
  9. Donnie Darko (Richard Kelly)
  10. Millennium Actress (Satoshi Kon)

2002

  1. In My Skin (Marina de Van)
  2. Punch-Drunk Love (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  3. Blissfully Yours (Apichatpong Weerasethakul)
  4. Irreversible (Gaspar Noe)
  5. Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (Park Chan-Wook)
  6. 25th Hour (Spike Lee)
  7. Vendredi soir (Claire Denis)
  8. Gerry (Gus Van Sant)
  9. Morvern Callar (Lynne Ramsay)
  10. The Hours (Stephen Daldry)
GDI
Goodbye, Dragon Inn

2003

  1. Goodbye, Dragon Inn (Tsai Ming-liang)
  2. Memories of Murder (Bong Joon-Ho)
  3. Lost in Translation (Sofia Coppola)
  4. Elephant (Gus Van Sant)
  5. Saraband (Ingmar Bergman)
  6. Gozu (Takashi Miike)
  7. Capturing the Friedmans (Andrew Jarecki) 
  8. Kill Bill Vol. 1 (Quentin Tarantino)
  9. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (Peter Jackson)
  10. Oldboy (Park Chan-Wook)
2046
2046

2004

  1. 2046 (Wong Kar Wai) 
  2. Before Sunset (Richard Linklater)
  3. Innocence (Lucile Hadzihalilovic)
  4. A Dirty Shame (John Waters)
  5. Take Out (Sean Baker, Shih-Ching Tsou)
  6. Seed of Chucky (Don Mancini)
  7. Mean Girls (Mark Waters)
  8. Nobody Knows (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  9. Tropical Malady (Apichatpong Weerasethakul)
  10. The Consequences of Love (Paolo Sorrentino)

2005

  1. House of Wax (Jaume Collet-Serra)
  2. The Wayward Cloud (Tsai Ming-liang)
  3. Good Night, and Good Luck (George Clooney)
  4. The Quiet (Jamie Babbit)
  5. Angel-A (Luc Besson)
  6. Caché [Hidden] (Michael Haneke)
  7. Grizzly Man (Werner Herzog)
  8. Munich (Steven Spielberg)
  9. Sympathy for Lady Vengeance (Park Chan-Wook)
  10. Capote (Bennett Miller)
The Lighthouse

2006

  1. The Lighthouse (Mariya Saakyan)
  2. Volver (Pedro Almodóvar)
  3. Old Joy (Kelly Reichardt)
  4. Syndromes and a Century (Apichatpong Weerasethakul)
  5. Marie Antoinette (Sofia Coppola)
  6. A Scanner Darkly (Richard Linklater)
  7. INLAND EMPIRE (David Lynch)
  8. Jackass Number Two (Jeff Tremaine)
  9. She’s the Man (Andy Fickman)
  10. Clerks II (Kevin Smith)
Grind House (Death Proof)
Death Proof

2007

  1. Death Proof (Quentin Tarantino)
  2. All is Forgiven (Mia Hansen-Løve)
  3. No Country for Old Men (Joel Coen, Ethan Coen)
  4. Water Lilies (Céline Sciamma) 
  5. Zodiac (David Fincher)
  6. Hostel Part II (Eli Roth)
  7. There Will Be Blood (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  8. Go Go Tales (Abel Ferrara) 
  9. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (Andrew Dominik)
  10. Persepolis (Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Paronnaud)

2008

  1. Wendy and Lucy (Kelly Reichardt)
  2. Home (Ursula Meier)
  3. Still Walking (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  4. Martyrs (Pascal Laugnier)
  5. Let the Right One In (Tomas Alfredson)
  6. Tokyo Sonata (Kiyoshi Kurosawa)
  7. Summer Hours (Olivier Assayas)
  8. The Headless Woman (Lucrecia Martel)
  9. Below Sea Level (Gianfranco Rosi)
  10. The Pleasure of Being Robbed (Joshua Safdie)

2009

  1. The House of the Devil (Ti West)
  2. The Limits of Control (Jim Jarmusch)
  3. Lourdes (Jessica Hausner)
  4. A Serious Man (Joel Coen, Ethan Coen)
  5. Father of My Children (Mia Hansen-Løve)
  6. Katalin Varga (Peter Strickland)
  7. Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno (Serge Bromberg, Ruxandra Medrea)
  8. Thirst (Park Chan-Wook)
  9. Jennifer’s Body (Karyn Kusama)
  10. The Happiest Girl in the World (Radu Jude)
Uncle Boonmee
Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives

2010

  1. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (Apichatpong Weerasethakul)
  2. El Sicario, Room 164 (Gianfranco Rosi)
  3. Black Swan (Darren Aronofsky)
  4. Somewhere (Sofia Coppola)
  5. The Myth of the American Sleepover (David Robert Mitchell)
  6. Piranha 3D (Alexandre Aja)
  7. Certified Copy (Abbas Kiarostami)
  8. Meek’s Cutoff (Kelly Reichardt)
  9. The Arbor (Clio Barnard)
  10. Cave of Forgotten Dreams (Werner Herzog)

2011

  1. The Woman (Lucky McKee)
  2. House of Tolerance (Bertrand Bonello)
  3. The Shining: Forward and Backwards (John Fell Ryan, Akiva Saunders)
  4. Goodbye, First Love (Mia Hansen-Løve)
  5. You’re Next (Adam Wingard) 
  6. I Wish (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  7. Pariah (Dee Rees)
  8. The Deep Blue Sea (Terence Davies)
  9. Take Shelter (Jeff Nichols)
  10. Martha Marcy May Marlene (Sean Durkin)
Resident Evil Retribution
Resident Evil: Retribution

2012

  1. Resident Evil: Retribution (Paul W. S. Anderson)
  2. Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach)
  3. Like Someone in Love (Abbas Kiarostami)
  4. American Mary (Jen Soska, Sylvia Soska)
  5. Post Tenebras Lux (Carlos Reygadas)
  6. Leviathan (Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Verena Paravel)
  7. Excision (Richard Bates, Jr)
  8. Spring Breakers (Harmony Korine)
  9. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  10. The Act of Killing (Joshua Oppenheimer, Christine Cynn, Anonymous)

2013

  1. Under the Skin (Jonathan Glazer)
  2. Bastards (Claire Denis)
  3. Like Father, Like Son (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  4. Night Moves (Kelly Reichardt)
  5. Before Midnight (Richard Linklater)
  6. The Wind Rises (Hayao Miyazaki)
  7. Palo Alto (Gia Coppola)
  8. Ida (Pawel Pawlikowski)
  9. Inside Llewyn Davis (Joel Coen, Ethan Coen)
  10. Magic Magic (Sebastián Silva)

2014

  1. Inherent Vice (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  2. Girlhood (Céline Sciamma)
  3. Clouds of Sils Maria (Olivier Assayas)
  4. Heaven Knows What (Benny Safdie, Josh Safdie)
  5. Jauja (Lisandro Alonso)
  6. Timbuktu (Abderrahmane Sissako)
  7. The Look of Silence (Joshua Oppenheimer)
  8. It Follows (David Robert Mitchell)
  9. Phoenix (Christian Petzold)
  10. Eden (Mia Hansen-Løve)
5 Carol
Carol

2015

  1. Carol (Todd Haynes)
  2. Right Now, Wrong Then (Hong Sang-soo)
  3. Our Little Sister (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)
  4. Mistress America (Noah Baumbach)
  5. Knight of Cups (Terrence Malick)
  6. Mad Max: Fury Road (George Miller)
  7. Magic Mike XXL (Gregory Jacobs)
  8. The Witch (Robert Eggers)
  9. Tangerine (Sean Baker)
  10. Taxi Tehran (Jafar Panahi)

2016

  1. Certain Women (Kelly Reichardt)
  2. Raw (Julie Ducournau)
  3. Jackie (Pablo Larraín)
  4. Moonlight (Barry Jenkins)
  5. Hail, Caesar! (Joel Coen, Ethan Coen)
  6. Cameraperson (Kristen Johnson)
  7. 10 Cloverfield Lane (Dan Trachtenberg)
  8. Things to Come (Mia Hansen-Løve)
  9. Lovesong (So Yong-Kim)
  10. A Quiet Passion (Terence Davies)

2017

  1. Get Out (Jordan Peele)
  2. Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  3. BPM (Beats Per Minute) (Robin Campillo)
  4. Virus Tropical (Santiago Caicedo)
  5. mother! (Darren Aronofsky)
  6. Princess Cyd (Stephen Cone)
  7. Paddington 2 (Paul King)
  8. The Killing of a Sacred Deer (Yorgos Lanthimos)
  9. The Florida Project (Sean Baker)
  10. The Rider (Chloe Zhao)
Long Day
Long Day’s Journey into Night

2018

  1. Long Day’s Journey into Night (Bi Gan)
  2. If Beale Street Could Talk (Barry Jenkins)
  3. Suspiria (Luca Guadagnino)
  4. Annihilation (Alex Garland)
  5. The Strangers: Prey at Night (Johannes Roberts)
  6. Holiday (Isabella Eklof)
  7. Madeline’s Madeline (Josephine Decker)
  8. Widows (Steve McQueen)
  9. Burning (Lee Chang-Dong)
  10. Shoplifters (Hirokazu Kore-Eda)

2019

  1. Portrait of a Lady on Fire (Céline Sciamma) 
  2. Homecoming – A Film by Beyoncé (Beyoncé Knowles-Carter)
  3. Us (Jordan Peele) 
  4. Swallow (Carlo Mirabella-Davis)
  5. A Hidden Life (Terrence Malick)
  6. Beanpole (Kantemir Balagov)
  7. The Souvenir (Joanna Hogg)
  8. Black Christmas (Sophia Takal)
  9. Ema (Pablo Larraín)
  10. An Easy Girl (Rebecca Zlotowski)

2020

  1. Never Rarely Sometimes Always (Eliza Hittman)
  2. Purple Sea (Amel Alzakout, Khaled Abdulwahed)
  3. Zola (Janicza Bravo)
  4. Malmkrog (Cristi Puiu)
  5. Dick Johnson is Dead (Kristen Johnson)
  6. Relic (Natalie Erika James)
  7. Small Axe: Lovers Rock (Steve McQueen)
  8. Notturno (Gianfranco Rosi)
  9. Beginning (Dea Kulumbegashvili)
  10. Shiva Baby (Emma Selligman)

2021

  1. The Matrix Resurrections (Lana Wachowski)
  2. Happening (Audrey Diwan)
  3. Malignant (James Wan)
  4. Great Freedom (Sebastian Meise)
  5. Licorice Pizza (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  6. Titane (Julia Ducournau)
  7. Censor (Prano Bailey-Bond)
  8. Red Rocket (Sean Baker)
  9. Benedetta (Paul Verhoeven)
  10. The Souvenir Part II (Joanna Hogg)

2022

  1. Aftersun (Charlotte Wells)
  2. Flux Gourmet (Peter Strickland)
  3. Both Sides of the Blade (Claire Denis)
  4. Nope (Jordan Peele)
  5. Kimi (Steven Soderbergh)
  6. Smile (Parker Finn)
  7. Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg)
  8. The Woman King (Gina Prince-Bythewood)
  9. Top Gun: Maverick (Joseph Kosinski)
  10. Decision to Leave (Park Chan-wook)

4 thoughts on “List: Top 10 Films Of Every Year, By Year Of Production

    1. Thank you! Ha, yeah I’m aware I’m in the minority when it comes to Death Proof…

      I keep updating this and hopefully can broaden it further with experience and open up the 30s and 40s, eventually. Ongoing project.

    1. Just personal preference – its far from a definitive set of lists (as several other choices here probably indicate). T2 is a banger, though, but a banger in a busy year!

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