Looking for a perfect top 100 list, one that exactly lines up with your own beliefs about what films should be most celebrated, is a fool’s errand. If one were to secure an audio recording to my reaction when I finally took a full look at the AFI’s best films ever made list, one would hear cursing and audible befuddlement not unlike that found on the infamous tapes in Shut Up, Little Man!. Even most of those best films of the aughts lists made me want to recite George Carlin‘s seven dirty words you can’t say on TV in rapid succession for a few hours.
So, I wasn’t expecting much from the BBC’s 100 Best Movies of the 21st Century list, despite knowing several accomplished critics who put in their ballots for the list. And yet, after giving the list a long look up and down, there really isn’t much realistically to be upset about here. The list begins with a three-film tie for the 100th space between Requiem for a Dream, Carlos, and Maren Ade‘s upcoming Toni Erdmann and ends in first place with…well, you’ll just have to see for yourself. In between there are major populist works, such as The Dark Knight, Finding Nemo, and Moulin Rouge!, and undersung foreign masterworks, from Werckmeister Harmonies and Yi Yi to Tabu and Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives.