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The American Film Institute’s Top 10 Film Lists

Posted by dorian on July 27, 2009

Oz and Godfather top movie lists

Frank Puglia (l) and Marlon Brando in The Godfather

The Godfather starred Marlon Brando as Don Vito Corleone

The Wizard of Oz and The Godfather have shared top billing in a best films list by the American Film Institute.

The AFI put together top 10 lists of films in 10 genres, including sci-fi, gangster, animation and Westerns.

Other winners included Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Lawrence of Arabia, To Kill A Mockingbird and Vertigo.

Scene from The Wizard of Oz

The Wizard of Oz beat The Lord of the Rings in the fantasy category

The AFI promotes US film education and heritage. Its president, Bob Gazzale, said the list helped to keep films in the cultural consciousness.

To Kill a Mockingbird topped the courtroom drama list, while 2001: A Space Odyssey was named best sci-fi.

The 1956 film The Searchers – starring John Wayne – was named best Western, and Raging Bull beat Rocky to take the best sports film title.

Alfred Hitchcock dominated the mystery category, topping the list with Vertigo, but also making the top 10 with Rear Window at three, North By Northwest at seven, and Dial M for Murder at nine.

Chaplin’s City Lights from 1931, one of only two silent films to make the genre lists, beat popular modern romances such as Annie Hall, When Harry Met Sally… and Sleepless in Seattle.

“This is why these lists are so important. They keep these films in the cultural conversation,” said Bob Gazzale, AFI president.

“When City Lights is honoured as the number one romantic comedy, millions of people will go back and watch it again.”

The winners were chosen by actors, film-makers, critics and others in Hollywood from ballots that included 50 nominees in each genre.


1. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)

2. Pinocchio (1940)

3. Bambi (1942)

4. The Lion King (1994)

5. Fantasia (1940)

6. Toy Story (1995)

7. Beauty and the Beast (1991)

8. Shrek (2001)

9. Cinderella (1950)

10. Finding Nemo (2003)


1. The Wizard of Oz (1939)

2. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001)

3. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

4. King Kong (1933)

5. Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

6. Field of Dreams (1989)

7. Harvey (1950)

8. Groundhog Day (1993)

9. The Thief of Bagdad (1924)

10. Big (1988)


1. The Godfather (1972)

2. Goodfellas (1990)

3. The Godfather Part II (1974)

4. White Heat (1949)

5. Bonnie and Clyde (1967)

6. Scarface: The Shame of a Nation (1932)

7. Pulp Fiction (1994)

8. The Public Enemy (1931)

9. Little Caesar (1930)

10. Scarface (1983)


1. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)

2. Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977)

3. ET the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

4. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

5. The Day The Earth Stood Still (1951)

6. Blade Runner (1982)

7. Alien (1979)

8. Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)

9. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

10. Back to the Future (1985)


1. The Searchers (1956)

2. High Noon (1952)

3. Shane (1953)

4. Unforgiven (1992)

5. Red River (1948)

6. The Wild Bunch (1969)

7. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)

8. McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971)

9. Stagecoach (1939)

10. Cat Ballou (1965)


1. Raging Bull (1980)

2. Rocky (1976)

3. The Pride of the Yankees (1942)

4. Hoosiers (1986)

5. Bull Durham (1988)

6. The Hustler (1961)

7. Caddyshack (1980)

8. Breaking Away (1979)

9. National Velvet (1944)

10. Jerry Maguire (1996)


1. Vertigo (1958)

2. Chinatown (1974)

3. Rear Window (1954)

4. Laura (1944)

5. The Third Man (1949)

6. The Maltese Falcon (1941)

7. North By Northwest (1959)

8. Blue Velvet (1986)

9. Dial M for Murder (1954)

10. The Usual Suspects (1995)


1. City Lights (1931)

2. Annie Hall (1977)

3. It Happened One Night (1934)

4. Roman Holiday (1953)

5. The Philadelphia Story (1940)

6. When Harry Met Sally… (1989)

7. Adam’s Rib (1949)

8. Moonstruck (1987)

9. Harold and Maude (1971)

10. Sleepless in Seattle (1993)


1. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

2. 12 Angry Men (1957)

3. Kramer vs Kramer (1979)

4. The Verdict (1982)

5. A Few Good Men (1992)

6. Witness for the Prosecution (1957)

7. Anatomy of a Murder (1959)

8. In Cold Blood (1967)

9. A Cry in the Dark (1988)

10. Judgment at Nuremberg (1961)


1. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)

2. Ben-Hur (1959)

3. Schindler’s List (1993)

4. Gone With the Wind (1939)

5. Spartacus (1960)

6. Titanic (1997)

7. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930)

8. Saving Private Ryan (1998)

9. Reds (1981)

10. The Ten Commandments (1956)

Source: BBC World News – Entertainment


16 Responses to “The American Film Institute’s Top 10 Film Lists”

  1. dorian said

    i’m reminded that there are three in this list i haven’t seen and some i would like to see again!
    i watch godfather. wizard of oz, the hitchcock movies and a few others listed when they’re on TMC.


  2. Princessxxx said

    best movie ever…”Team America, World Police”

    it has everything.


  3. tothewire said

    Wow! Site looks great! Who would have dreamed we would have started something so wonderful. I miss you all. Lawman must have changed my password, or I would make a short post and update about us. I hope E_E reads this comment…I will be in Orlando, Florida Friday the 31st thru Aug 7th.


  4. kay~ms said

    Welcome back TTW!! We’ve really missed you! And have been concerned. We’ll wait for your post update when you can get in to post… I can’t get in to post or edit or approve either…

    Dorian, I can get in using my password but that doesn’t let me edit or approve anything like I used to be able to do… I have’t actually tried to post anything yet but I’m guessing that I won’t be able to. I’ve tried TTW’s password, the one you gave me, and it doesn’t work… as she has also said… are you sure you guys are just trying to sensor me??? Princess??? Come on you guys… that’s not nice and it doesn’t reflect very well either…


  5. dorian said

    kay, i just dragged this (your comment #4)from the moderation file. i also had to drag one of tothewire’s from there this morning. yours, mine, everybody’s, no exceptions. i don’t know what’s happening. you should be able to post if princess can. you’re both authors. those w/ author access can’t ban or censor, only admins can -that’s ttw, me, e_e and maybe lawman but i trust no one will be banned without a warning and comments aren’t touched unless there’s profanity and multiple links or symbols like @@ or others repeated multiple times. wordpress puts those directly into spam. there’s some kind of glitch. do a test post again and see what happens..


  6. dorian said

    as author, can you go into dashboard and click on comments to see the comments that are waiting approval or in the moderation cue? if so, you can approve yourself and others…


  7. dorian said

    looks like you used to be able to do all that but now you can’t. e_e, what do you think?


  8. kay~ms said

    Dorian, I can’t approve anything in dashboard…no option to do so shows up for me. I could do all of that when I used TTW’s username and password but it appears that the password has been changed. When I came back from my brief vacation the password worked (once I was able to remember it) but doesn’t now.


  9. lawman2 said

    now only tothewire will be able to post under tothewire…


  10. lawman2 said

    call me an ass, really i don’t mind…


  11. whoops: looks like I spoke too soon……you sure missed a lot of fun disputation, sheriff


  12. tothewire said



  13. lawman2 said

    me or betty?


  14. lawman2 said

    hey there betty! i see that we have missed out on all kinds of fun here!


  15. tothewire said



  16. Hmm it seems like your website ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I submitted and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog.
    I too am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to the whole thing. Do you have any suggestions for first-time blog writers? I’d definitely appreciate


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