Every ten years since 1952, the British film magazine Sight & Sound has polled an international roster of critics and directors, in an attempt to answer a thorny question: What is the greatest film of all time?

When Sight & Sound did their poll for the first time in 1952, the top choice was Vittorio de Sica’s Bicycle Thieves. Ten years later, the critics top pick was Orson Welles’ Citizen Kane, and for the next 40 years, Kane remained at the top of the Sight & Sound list. Then, in 2012, it was finally dethroned for the first time in half a century by Alfred Hitchcock’s Vertigo.

It is 2022, and so, for the eighth time, the magazine had collected the opinions of hundreds of writers and directors and found an answer. According to the critics polled, the best movie ever is the classic Belgian film Chantal Akerman’s Jeanne Dielman, 23, quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles.

Here is the full top ten (the actual poll ranks the top 100 movies — go to Sight & Sound’s site to see them all).

Sight & Sound’s 2022 Picks For the Greatest Films of All Time

Every ten years, the British film magazine Sight & Sound polls a collection of international critics and directors to determine the greatest movies ever made. Here were their choices in 2022.

For comparison sake, the last time Sight & Sound polled critics, here was their top ten list:

  1. Vertigo (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)
  2. Citizen Kane (Orson Welles, 1941)
  3. Tokyo Story (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953)
  4. The Rules of the Game (Jean Renoir, 1939)
  5. Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (F.W. 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)

There’s a lot more to be gleaned from the full poll results; you can read all of this decade’s Sight & Sound film poll at the BFI’s official website.

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