200 Essential Movies To Watch Now

#40

Roman Holiday (1953)
98%

#40
Adjusted Score: 105.35%
Critics Consensus: With Audrey Hepburn luminous in her American debut, Roman Holiday is as funny as it is beautiful, and sets the standard for the modern romantic comedy.
Synopsis: Fathom Events, Turner Classic Movies and Paramount Pictures are delighted to bring the 1953 American romantic-comedy classic, Roman Holiday, back... [More]
Directed By: William Wyler

#41
#41
Adjusted Score: 105.657%
Critics Consensus: With his electrifying performance in Elia Kazan's thought-provoking, expertly constructed melodrama, Marlon Brando redefined the possibilities of acting for film and helped permanently alter the cinematic landscape.
Synopsis: This classic story of Mob informers was based on a number of true stories and filmed on location in and... [More]
Directed By: Elia Kazan

#42
#42
Adjusted Score: 105.164%
Critics Consensus: Drawing on strong performances by Al Pacino and Robert De Niro, Francis Ford Coppola's continuation of Mario Puzo's Mafia saga set new standards for sequels that have yet to be matched or broken.
Synopsis: Francis Ford Coppola's legendary continuation and sequel to his landmark 1972 film, The Godfather, parallels the young Vito Corleone's rise... [More]
Directed By: Francis Ford Coppola

#43

Toy Story (1995)
100%

#43
Adjusted Score: 105.306%
Critics Consensus: Entertaining as it is innovative, Toy Story reinvigorated animation while heralding the arrival of Pixar as a family-friendly force to be reckoned with.
Synopsis: Woody, a traditional pull-string talking cowboy, has long enjoyed a place of honor as the favorite among six-year-old Andy's menagerie... [More]
Directed By: John Lasseter

#44

Jaws (1975)
97%

#44
Adjusted Score: 105.594%
Critics Consensus: Compelling, well-crafted storytelling and a judicious sense of terror ensure Steven Spielberg's Jaws has remained a benchmark in the art of delivering modern blockbuster thrills.
Synopsis: Based on Peter Benchley's best-selling novel, Steven Spielberg's 1975 shark saga set the standard for the New Hollywood popcorn blockbuster... [More]
Directed By: Steven Spielberg

#45
#45
Adjusted Score: 106.373%
Critics Consensus: The epic of all epics, Lawrence of Arabia cements director David Lean's status in the filmmaking pantheon with nearly four hours of grand scope, brilliant performances, and beautiful cinematography.
Synopsis: This sweeping, highly literate historical epic covers the Allies' mideastern campaign during World War I as seen through the eyes... [More]
Directed By: David Lean

#46

Chinatown (1974)
98%

#46
Adjusted Score: 105.019%
Critics Consensus: As bruised and cynical as the decade that produced it, this noir classic benefits from Robert Towne's brilliant screenplay, director Roman Polanski's steady hand, and wonderful performances from Jack Nicholson and Faye Dunaway.
Synopsis: A private detective, Jake Gittes, hired to investigate an adultery case, stumbles on the plot of a murder involving incest... [More]
Directed By: Roman Polanski

#47
Adjusted Score: 105.089%
Critics Consensus: A cult classic as gut-bustingly hilarious as it is blithely ridiculous, Monty Python and the Holy Grail has lost none of its exceedingly silly charm.
Synopsis: From its opening multi-language titles (that sure looks like Swedish) to the closing arrest of the entire Dark Ages cast... [More]
Directed By: Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones

#48

La Dolce Vita (1960)
97%

#48
Adjusted Score: 104.792%
Critics Consensus: An epic, breathtakingly stylish cinematic landmark, La Dolce Vita remains riveting in spite of -- or perhaps because of -- its sprawling length.
Synopsis: In this Federico Fellini film, Marcello Mastrioanni stars as Fellini's alter ego, here depicted as a gossip columnist. Having left... [More]
Directed By: Federico Fellini

#49

The Searchers (1956)
100%

#49
Adjusted Score: 104.739%
Critics Consensus: The Searchers is an epic John Wayne Western that introduces dark ambivalence to the genre that remains fashionable today.
Synopsis: If John Ford is the greatest Western director, The Searchers is arguably his greatest film, at once a grand outdoor... [More]
Directed By: John Ford

#50
#50
Adjusted Score: 104.65%
Critics Consensus: The holiday classic to define all holiday classics, It's a Wonderful Life is one of a handful of films worth an annual viewing.
Synopsis: This is director Frank Capra's classic bittersweet comedy/drama about George Bailey (James Stewart), the eternally-in-debt guiding force of a bank... [More]
Directed By: Frank Capra

#51

The Red Shoes (1948)
96%

#51
Adjusted Score: 104.651%
Critics Consensus: The Red Shoes is one of the best-looking movies ever, and blends multiple moods and styles with balletic grace.
Synopsis: The tale of a famous ballerina who must choose between art and love.... [More]

#52

The Terminator (1984)
100%

#52
Adjusted Score: 104.61%
Critics Consensus: With its impressive action sequences, taut economic direction, and relentlessly fast pace, it's clear why The Terminator continues to be an influence on sci-fi and action flicks.
Synopsis: A Cyborg has been sent from the future on a deadly mission, it has been programmed to kill a young... [More]
Directed By: James Cameron

#53

Apocalypse Now (1979)
98%

#53
Adjusted Score: 105.619%
Critics Consensus: Francis Ford Coppola's haunting, hallucinatory Vietnam War epic is cinema at its most audacious and visionary.
Synopsis: One of a cluster of late-1970s films about the Vietnam War, Francis Ford Coppola's Apocalypse Now adapts the Joseph Conrad... [More]
Directed By: Francis Ford Coppola

#54
Adjusted Score: 105.11%
Critics Consensus: A legendarily expansive and ambitious start to the sci-fi saga, George Lucas opened our eyes to the possibilities of blockbuster filmmaking and things have never been the same.
Synopsis: Nineteen years after the formation of the Empire, Luke Skywalker is thrust into the struggle of the Rebel Alliance when... [More]
Directed By: George Lucas

#55
#55
Adjusted Score: 104.444%
Critics Consensus: Let the Right One In reinvigorates the seemingly tired vampire genre by effectively mixing scares with intelligent storytelling.
Synopsis: A 12-year-old boy befriends a mysterious young girl whose appearance in town suspiciously coincides with a horrifying series of murders... [More]
Directed By: Tomas Alfredson

#56

Playtime (1973)
100%

#56
Adjusted Score: 104.139%
Critics Consensus: A remarkable achievement, Playtime's packs every scene with sight gags and characters that both celebrates and satirizes the urbanization of modern life.
Synopsis: Hilarious, dazzlingly inventive comedy in which Mr. Hulot tries to function in an unrecognizable Paris of modernistic glass-and-steel skyscrapers.... [More]
Directed By: Jacques Tati

#57

Annie Hall (1977)
97%

#57
Adjusted Score: 104.005%
Critics Consensus: Filled with poignant performances and devastating humor, Annie Hall represents a quantum leap for Woody Allen and remains an American classic.
Synopsis: "Annie Hall" is a comical look at the up and down relationship between a New York City TV writer and... [More]
Directed By: Woody Allen

#58
#58
Adjusted Score: 103.976%
Critics Consensus: Realistic, fast-paced and uncommonly smart, The French Connection is bolstered by stellar performances by Gene Hackman and Roy Scheider, not to mention William Friedkin's thrilling production.
Synopsis: This gritty, fast-paced, and innovative police drama earned five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Adapted Screenplay (written by Ernest... [More]
Directed By: William Friedkin

#59

City Lights (1931)
98%

#59
Adjusted Score: 104.04%
Critics Consensus: One of the best underdog romance movies ever, with an ending that will light up any heart.
Synopsis: A homeless tramp befriends a lovely blind flower seller and convinces her he is a millionaire while he secretly labors... [More]
Directed By: Charles Chaplin

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