After 50 Years at No. 1, ‘Citizen Kane’ Loses Its Spot Atop List of All-Time Best Movies

Aug 2, 2012  •  Post A Comment

The 1941 Orson Welles classic “Citizen Kane” lost its spot atop an influential list of the all-time best movies after 50 years at No. 1.

The new No. 1 on the Sight & Sound magazine poll is Alfred Hitchcock’s “Vertigo,” NBC News reports. “Kane” slipped to No. 2 in the poll of 846 critics, programmers, academics and distributors.

“Vertigo” has risen steadily in the poll, which is conducted every 10 years. The San Francisco-based suspense movie, released in 1958, was seventh on the list in 1982, rising to fourth in 1992 and second in 2002.

The report notes: “While Americans may not know the magazine, a monthly published by the British Film Institute, Roger Ebert has called its best-film poll ‘the only one most serious movie people take seriously.’ Movies are voted for by an international group of film experts.”

Other high-ranking movies on the list may be less familiar to American viewers. Coming in at No. 3 was Ozu Yasujiro’s “Tokyo Story” (1953), followed by “La Regle du jeu (The Rules of the Game)” (Jean Renoir, 1939) and “Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans” (FW Murnau, 1927).

Here’s the Top 10:

1. “Vertigo” (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)
2. “Citizen Kane” (Orson Welles, 1941)
3. “Tokyo Story” (Ozu Yasujiro, 1953)
4. “La Regle du jeu (The Rules of the Game)” (Jean Renoir, 1939)
5. “Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans” (FW Murnau, 1927).
6. “2001: A Space Odyssey” (Stanley Kubrick, 1968)
7. “The Searchers” (John Ford, 1956)
8. “Man With a Movie Camera” (Dziga Vertov, 1929)
9. “The Passion of Joan of Arc” (Carl Dreyer, 1927)
10. “8-1/2” (Federico Fellini, 1963)

The Top 50 can be found here.

One Comment

  1. Interesting list, but how can one rate one great movie over another? I loved both Vertigo AND Citizen Kane.

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