As an example, I can't imagine a world where 'The Avengers' is better than 'Schindler's List', 'Godfather, Part 2', or 'Pulp Fiction' (just 3 examples).
A few stupid entries:
#1721 'I Love Lucy' - easily considered by critics as the best TV comedy of all time yet barely in the top 20% of all tv and movies?
I can't even find the MASH TV show, only the movie. Pretty weird considering that it's considered the 2nd best TV comedy of all time.
#74 'Seinfeld' - considered the 3rd best TV comedy of all time. The internet is more friendly to this one.
#15 'Game of Thrones (TV)' - fanboys strike again, or they just really like irrelevant nudity.
#1636 'The Constant Gardener' - it is an abomination that this is here, it's lower ranked than 'Super Troopers' (#1626), 'Iron Man 2' (#1610), and 'Soul Surfer' (#1599), just to name a few.
This has some interesting consequences. For instance, in the restricted realm of science fiction TV, it's clear that Star Trek: The Next Generation is strictly better than the original Star Trek, just as the recent Battlestar Galactica is strictly better than TNG, because these series responded to and innovated on each other.
On balance, I still wouldn't say it's necessarily true that newer series are better than older series. It's still rare that a TV series tops The Prisoner, for instance.
Bowfinger (1999), Solaris (2002), Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989), From the Village to the City (1974), Going Postal (2010), Legally Blonde (2001) that's that's 4913 to 4918.
PS: Granted, rating movies is a huge multi dimensional problem, just ask Netflix, but you don't need a lot of accuracy to find a good movie.
I seriously doubt that. Just because it's what the available data show doesn't mean that that's the popular taste. If you surveyed 100 people who have seen both The Avengers and Godfather Part 2, I highly doubt a majority will regard the former as a better film than the latter. People are in different moods when they rate films, older films don't get rated as often, the scale with which an individual rates different films may be wildly non-normalized...
Website idea: show two random movies, ask them if they've seen both, and if they have, ask the user which one's better without prescribing what "better" means. Repeat 1 trillion times. I'd be much more willing to trust differential data like this.
 - not going to call it a startup idea, because I have no idea how it would make money.
I think you'd be surprised. Though, I also think you'd be hard-pressed to find people who have watched both films (I've only seen one, and it isn't The Avengers). And there's a reason for that: most people don't want to watch a three-hour, epic drama from 1972. Ask people who haven't seen either film which they'd rather see, tonight, and I'll bet they choose The Avengers. Why? Because if you haven't seen GF2 by now, it probably doesn't interest you. So on some level, these rankings speak to the current Zeitgeist.
I can't understand the vitriol directed at these rankings. Sure, there is a definite bias towards modern films in the imdb rankings, but it is what it is. I don't think that it's any different than some crotchety old movie critic telling me which films I should like best.
The fact of the matter is, there is no objective measure of "best". Scan these comments. I can find examples to agree with and disagree with in nearly every single one. But they are all saying the same thing: "This list is wrong!" Based on that, I don't think you or I would have any more success curating a list of movies. This list is as good as any.
Anyway, great tool.
For example, I would have a difficult time deciding which of the two - "The Secret in Their Eyes" or "Gladiator" - is better.
A "would like to see" button would be useful too.
You'd have to be careful not to cap a movies' rating just because scores in that era are more lenient though -- maybe pull movies toward an overall median based on their distance from a 2-3 year moving average.
So say we want the median score to be 50%. And the median rating in 2008 was 63%. Let's take two movies from 2008 -- one scored 98%, the highest score in several years, and one scored 63%. The 98% movie stays at 98%. The 63% movie score becomes 50%.
Anyway, Marvel really messed up what could have been awesome in the first place.
Perhaps the film companies have finally found a way to alter the minds of movie-goers.
IMDB rating is 8.5 only for Avengers. That will place it outside the top 30 here.
Citizen Kane gets a lot of rightful attention for being historic and groundbreaking in a number of ways, especially by people who have never seen it. Unfortunately, despite often being conflated, "groundbreaking" and "good" are not really the same thing. Now, don't get me wrong, Citizen Kane is a fine film and still worth watching today. But divorce it from its historic role and consider modern audiences. Think about what it would be like if released today. At best it would be critically-acclaimed and lauded by a small audience without ever seeing mainstream appeal, much as Firefly has.
Now, granted, I haven't gone a single shred toward showing that Firefly is actually any better than Citizen Kane though I have gone some way to putting them on roughly the same level. And Firefly has more explosions and space zombies making it more watchable for many people today.
Is Firefly really better than Citizen Kane? It will never be widely thought so by critics but I can definitely see an argument where it is better for modern audiences and I really think that's what matters at the end of the day.
Er, how, exactly?
Firefly doesn't have that sort of psychological depth, but it does have a lot of moral ambiguity, something that's virtually non-existant in CK. That's something that would have gone a lot deeper had the show gotten another two or three seasons, but they never got that chance. It also has some of the most clever writing of any TV show, up there with only Arrested Development really. Cleverness might not be as prized by critics as authentic character writing, but it's still at the top of its form nonetheless. The main downside of the show was that it was already starting to get a bit formulaic toward the end of season one when they canceled it. In any event, I don't think you could ever put Firefly above Citizen Kane, but certainly I think it pushed the boundaries of its genre in a way that is rare.
The Avengers, on the other hand, has virtually no redeeming value whatsoever except for Joss Whedon's clever writing during the second half and the amazing effects during the NYC fight scene.
Are you really criticizing the subjectivity of this list based on the subjective rankings of your generation?
Also game of thrones is brilliant, imo.
The same thing is happening with Game of Thrones. It's excellent but I've seen many, many TV dramas that are just as good if not better.
Comedy is a terrible example to criticize due to it tending to be very cross-generational. MASH, Seinfeld, and I Love Lucy are still shown on TV today. MASH and I Love Lucy on more obscure cable channels, but Seinfeld still is on in reruns for an hour before primetime TV on our CBS affiliate.
There are plenty of films made after 1995 that I think are highly deserving. But in 20 years from now, will we look and say Return of the King out ranks Star Wars? Or The Avengers is better than 12 Angry Men? (The Avengers was decent popcorn fun, but what was the plot?)
I remember seeing the same thing on IMDB years back, where contemporary movies will appear very high on the list and disappear.
If you read the reviews (and I think IMDB lets you filter by demographics, or used to) you'll see that it's mostly young kids and idiots voting summer blockbusters as "10/10 OMG best movie evar!".
Not sure if there is a solution as it's always been the same way, there's always some hot new art, book, technology, etc. that's "GROUNDBREAKING" "CLASSIC" "AMAZING" that fades away quickly and the items that stick around for posterity aren't necessarily the ones that you'd predict (eg. Moby Dick and The Great Gatsby were initially flops on publication).
"The National Film Registry is the United States National Film Preservation Board's selection of films for preservation in the Library of Congress."
"The National Film Registry names to its list up to 25 'culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant films' each year, showcasing the range and diversity of American film heritage to increase awareness for its preservation.... To be eligible for inclusion, a film must be at least ten years old."
< 1910: 4 (0)
1911-1920: 7 (0)
1921-1930: 48 (0)
1931-1940: 123 (4)
1941-1950: 168 (8)
1951-1960: 243 (10)
1961-1970: 297 (5)
1971-1980: 362 (13)
1981-1990: 583 (7)
1991-2000: 1030 (21)
2001-2010: 1937 (27)
2011-Now: 198 (5)
As the whole idea of an universal list is.
If so, is there a legal issue with reusing this data? I actually don't know what the answer is, I'm curious if there is or not.
IANAL but from my reading it sounds like non-commercial use is ok.
Also, I got this error: http://cl.ly/image/2D2S1E020e0W. I think I clicked on Stanley Kubrick and then came back to the home page.
But please change the title to "500 best movies according to IMDB & RottenTomatoes".
I mean, look here: http://5000best.com/movies/Stanley_Kubrick
Clockwork Orange is 46th, 2001 is 211st, and Lolita (Kubrick's version), 1018th. Best movie that poor, not-so-much-talented Kubrick has apparently made is Strangelove, which is 32nd "best movie ever made".
It's very informative to know what IMDB thinks (for one thing, you know what movies to skip), but basing our "best movies" list on what they think is not all right.
What's the ranking criteria?
Also, being able to exclude based on categories (comedy, no animations, no family for example) would be a great feature.
The ranking criteria - basically, I combined ratings from IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes, with additional heuristic tweaks. The ranking method I use for is different than the popular IMDb method aka "True Bayesian estimate", which is not really a Bayesian estimate. I wrote more about how I approach ranking in my e-book http://arek-paterek.com/book/ , for people who are really interested in such technical details.
I think the first question most people have when they see a "top _____" list, is "according to who?" Having a short description of the way the rankings are done along with a link to a more detailed description, would be great.
Nice job on shipping it!
The HN title and site title are both mildly misleading.
I understand that your sources (RT & IMDB) may have these mixed and it will take some time figure out what makes sense.
Almost all of Kubrick's films are in the top 5000 except for one or two.
These include some (in Frank Welker's case quite a few) TV shows, but even filtering for film all of them have more than Hitchcock.
Also, I think I'm going to re-watch #1772 - Sunshine .
People sell pirated films on the street here in Brazil and I once heard of a cultured 'pirate' who only sold pirated, high-brow DVDs. It got me thinking
You can buy a physical media copy of a film licensed for rental quite easily through a standard-ish system (expensive, I think it's a few hundred bucks for the disc?) but there's no standard system for licensing streaming and as long as the studios are scared of the Internet there won't be one.
There's a few indie streaming services out there but they're small. Film critic Roger Ebert runs "The Ebert Club", an online subscription club with limited runs of fairly obscure older movies. I remember one for horror/arthouse stuff too, but can't find it now. LoveFilm is really big in the UK.
While some movies are transcendent, they are also highly subjective to their viewers tastes. As tastes change, so does the opinion of each generation and, thus, the ratings of those movies. As each generation disappears, why shouldn't the charts change, as that would be a reflection of the fact that each generation is different from the next one?
For example, I didn't think Star Wars was a great movie, even though I am a huge Sci-Fi fan! Most people would find this contradictory, but I can't argue with my tastes: I watched all of the episodes in 2009 and I said: "meh". Now, I am aware that at the time it had revolutionary graphics and it had a great impact on the film industry (which is why I dedicated the time to watch it in the first place). I can appreciate the impact it had in 1977, but in terms of absolute value it brought to me in 2009 - I can't justify the decision to vote for it as one of the top 10 best movies.
I noticed there is a strong bias coming from people who have watched Star Wars decades ago and only remember how awesome that movie made them feel at the time. I understand, I'm the same about the first 2 Terminator movies (since I'm in my late 20s) - there will always be a special place in my heart for them, but, realistically speaking, if I'd rewatch Terminator 1 or 2 right now, I wouldn't be as impressed with them as I was back then.
Obviously, it is unfair to compare movies from the 70s and 80s with the movies of today, but these charts do exactly this when they place The Godfather on 2nd place. Now the problem is that the placement suggests that Godfather 2 will be more enjoyable _today_ than The Avengers. Well, why should that be the case? My personal experience taught me otherwise.
Another example: the parent post mentions "I Love Lucy" as "the best TV comedy of all time", according to the critics. I'm constantly in search of good comedies and I watched the trailer to assess how much enjoyment I might get out it. I have to say - the IMDB trailer shows a primitive comedy and it didn't resonate with me, even though I'm not opposed to watching old comedies (Noises Off (1992) is one of my favorite "old" comedies). So I probably won't watch it, despite the fact that it was so highly acclaimed. Which then makes me wonder: how accurate are the ratings of the "critics"? If they're all in their 40s,50s and 60s (because it takes time to build a reputation as a critic), why would my generation listen to them and expect an accurate assessment of how enjoyable an old movie would be today ?
In conclusion, I'd like to suggest that maybe some movies naturally die out (in terms of rating) as a fact of life, just as old basketball players have to make room for new players, as they simply can't compete with the young ones. Perhaps there is a similar trend with movies, where modern technology coupled with a great plot simply creates a more immersive experience than old movies can, solely with their plot. If it is so, then we shouldn't disregard these charts just because "epic movie X from 100 years ago" ended up as #XXXXX.
Thanks for reading!
P.S.: Parent post should be Zimahl's "The problem with these rankings ... "
Check out this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NFfTot3qYMc
This is what a good movie is. It reflects the life as it is. It's not for entertainment. It's for art and people looking for good movie.
EDIT: However I do agree that majority of the "good" movies these days are just targeting the entertainment nerve of a potential consumer...
The former at least has the potential to give me something other than safe, obvious choices.
Was the GP sarcastic or something, for using IMDB?
I'm always looking for a new way to find movies/series to watch and this list seems like a good one (I seem to agree with most of the ones I've seen near the top).
Regardless IMHO gladiator ranked at #57 is my favorite.
I tried restricting it to TV series, and I noticed an interesting trend that anything older than 2000 is pretty far down the list.
This is probably just a factor of pre-Internet TV shows not being well represented by number of reviews.
I see the same bias on sites like Rotten Tomatoes where if you look at an excellent movie before 1995, it will have few reviews (unless there were a bunch of reviews collected for the DVD / BluRay releases)