November 13, 2018

Are These The 100 Best Foreign Films of All Time?

Are These The 100 Best Foreign Films Of All Time?
How many of your favorites are on BBC's latest list? 

Two years ago, the BBC came out with a fantastic list detailing a critics' poll of the 100 Greatest Films of the Twenty-First Century. It's a must-keep-bookmarked article for any cinephile looking to further their education through the watching of film. And now, whether you've put a dent in viewing that list or not, they're back with a new list concerning the 100 Greatest Foreign Language Films.

The polling was expanded to better reflect the major, worldwide task this endeavor a list like this seeks to accomplish. As such, the 209 critics who took part are from 43 different countries and speak a total of 41 languages. The results include the films of 67 different directors from 24 countries in 19 languages.

"Pan's Labyrinth" Credit: Warner Bros.

The BBC found that according to the poll, the "French can claim to be the international language of acclaimed cinema." 27 of the highest-rated films were in French, and with Godard, Bresson, Renoir, and Truffaut in the mix, that's not really much of a surprise. In contrast, they found that several languages were represented by just one film, highlighting the Belarusian Come and See, Romanian 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days, and Wolof Touki Bouki.

These lists always leave plenty of excellent films off, even when they total at 100. Does the BBC's effort align with your own list of the best foriegn films of all time? 

As we discussed on last week's episode of Indie Film Weekly, many of the top 25 are more classic than contemporary and with the imminent demise of Filmstruck on the horizon, these films will soon be a lot more difficult to seek out. Check out the entire list of the best foriegn films of all time below:

100. Landscape in the Mist (Theo Angelopoulos, 1988)
99. Ashes and Diamonds (Andrzej Wajda, 1958)
98. In the Heat of the Sun (Jiang Wen, 1994)
97. Taste of Cherry (Abbas Kiarostami, 1997)
96. Shoah (Claude Lanzmann, 1985)
95. Floating Clouds (Mikio Naruse, 1955)
94. Where Is the Friend's Home? (Abbas Kiarostami, 1987)
93. Raise the Red Lantern (Zhang Yimou, 1991)
92. Scenes from a Marriage (Ingmar Bergman, 1973)
91. Rififi (Jules Dassin, 1955)
90. Hiroshima Mon Amour (Alain Resnais, 1959)
89. Wild Strawberries (Ingmar Bergman, 1957)
88. The Story of the Last Chrysanthemum (Kenji Mizoguchi, 1939)
87. The Nights of Cabiria (Federico Fellini, 1957)
86. La Jetée (Chris Marker, 1962)
85. Umberto D (Vittorio de Sica, 1952)
84. The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie (Luis Buñuel, 1972)
83. La Strada (Federico Fellini, 1954)
82. Amélie (Jean-Pierre Jeunet, 2001)
81. Celine and Julie go Boating (Jacques Rivette, 1974)
80. The Young and the Damned (Luis Buñuel, 1950)
79. Ran (Akira Kurosawa, 1985)
78. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Ang Lee, 2000)
77. The Conformist (Bernardo Bertolucci, 1970)
76. Y Tu Mamá También (Alfonso Cuarón, 2001)
75. Belle de Jour (Luis Buñuel, 1967)
74. Pierrot Le Fou (Jean-Luc Godard, 1965)
73. Man with a Movie Camera (Dziga Vertov, 1929)
72. Ikiru (Akira Kurosawa, 1952)
71. Happy Together (Wong Kar-wai, 1997)
70. L’Eclisse (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1962)
69. Amour (Michael Haneke, 2012)
68. Ugetsu (Kenji Mizoguchi, 1953)
67. The Exterminating Angel (Luis Buñuel, 1962)
66. Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1973)
65. Ordet (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1955)
64. Three Colours: Blue (Krzysztof Kieślowski, 1993)
63. Spring in a Small Town (Fei Mu, 1948)
62. Touki Bouki (Djibril Diop Mambéty, 1973)
61. Sansho the Bailiff (Kenji Mizoguchi, 1954)
60. Contempt (Jean-Luc Godard, 1963)
59. Come and See (Elem Klimov, 1985)
58. The Earrings of Madame de… (Max Ophüls, 1953)
57. Solaris (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1972)
56. Chungking Express (Wong Kar-wai, 1994)
55. Jules and Jim (François Truffaut, 1962)
54. Eat Drink Man Woman (Ang Lee, 1994)
53. Late Spring (Yasujirô Ozu, 1949)
52. Au Hasard Balthazar (Robert Bresson, 1966)
51. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (Jacques Demy, 1964)
50. L’Atalante (Jean Vigo, 1934)
49. Stalker (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1979)
48. Viridiana (Luis Buñuel, 1961)
47. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (Cristian Mungiu, 2007)
46. Children of Paradise (Marcel Carné, 1945)
45. L’Avventura (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1960)
44. Cleo from 5 to 7 (Agnès Varda, 1962)
43. Beau Travail (Claire Denis, 1999)
42. City of God (Fernando Meirelles, Kátia Lund, 2002)
41. To Live (Zhang Yimou, 1994)
40. Andrei Rublev (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1966)
39.  Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami, 1990)
38. A Brighter Summer Day (Edward Yang, 1991)
37. Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki, 2001)
36. La Grande Illusion (Jean Renoir, 1937)
35. The Leopard (Luchino Visconti, 1963)
34. Wings of Desire (Wim Wenders, 1987)
33. Playtime (Jacques Tati, 1967)
32. All About My Mother (Pedro Almodóvar, 1999)
31. The Lives of Others (Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, 2006)
30. The Seventh Seal (Ingmar Bergman, 1957)
29. Oldboy (Park Chan-wook, 2003)
28. Fanny and Alexander (Ingmar Bergman, 1982)
27. The Spirit of the Beehive (Victor Erice, 1973)
26. Cinema Paradiso (Giuseppe Tornatore, 1988)
25. Yi Yi (Edward Yang, 2000)
24. Battleship Potemkin (Sergei M Eisenstein, 1925)
23. The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1928)
22. Pan’s Labyrinth (Guillermo del Toro, 2006)
21. A Separation (Asghar Farhadi, 2011)
20. The Mirror (Andrei Tarkovsky, 1974)
19. The Battle of Algiers (Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966)
18. A City of Sadness (Hou Hsiao-hsien, 1989)
17. Aguirre, the Wrath of God (Werner Herzog, 1972)
16. Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927)
15. Pather Panchali (Satyajit Ray, 1955)
14. Jeanne Dielman, 23 Commerce Quay, 1080 Brussels (Chantal Akerman, 1975)
13. M (Fritz Lang, 1931)
12. Farewell My Concubine (Chen Kaige, 1993)
11. Breathless (Jean-Luc Godard, 1960)
10. La Dolce Vita (Federico Fellini, 1960)
9. In the Mood for Love (Wong Kar-wai, 2000)
8. The 400 Blows (François Truffaut, 1959)
7. 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963)
6. Persona (Ingmar Bergman, 1966)
5. The Rules of the Game (Jean Renoir, 1939)
4. Rashomon (Akira Kurosawa, 1950)
3. Tokyo Story (Yasujirô Ozu, 1953)
2. Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio de Sica, 1948)
1. Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa, 1954)

How many of these have you seen? Are any of your favorites missing? Let us know in the comments below.     

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