First science fiction film
A Trip to the Moon or Le Voyage dans la lune is a 1902 French movie directed by magician director Georges Méliès, loosely based on two popular Jules Verne novels and known to be the first science fiction film in cinematic history. Indeed it uses innovative animation and special effects such as the famous scene where the spaceship land in the eye of the moon.
American silent film directed by D. W. Griffith
The Birth of a Nation is an American silent film directed by D. W. Griffith which chronicles the relationship of two families during the Civil War with key historic scenes such as the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. The film was a huge commercial success, but was highly controversial due to the depiction of racism, which inspired D.W. Griffith to produce Intolerance the following year.
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari directed by Robert Wiene is considered one of the greatest horror movies of the silent era as well as one of the most influential of German Expressionist. The film is also famous for being the first to introduce the twist ending in cinema.
One of the greatest horror movies of the silent era
Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror, simply known as Nosferatu is a German Expressionist horror film directed by F. W. Murnau and loosely based on Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula. The film starred Max Schreck in the role of the vampire Nosferatu Count Orlok.
German expressionist horror film directed by f.w. murnau
Nanook of the North is a 1922 silent documentary film by Robert J. Flaherty in the tradition of what would later be called salvage ethnography. The film is considered the first feature-length documentary, showing the struggles of Inuk Nanook and his family in the Canadian arctic.
Considered the first feature-length documentary
The Battleship Potemkin is one of the greatest masterpieces by Russian director Sergei Eisenstein showing a dramatized version of the 1905 mutiny of the battleship Potemkin crew against their officers of the Tsarist regime. The film is known for being one of the most influential propaganda films of all time.
Oone of the most influential propaganda films of all time
Metropolis is a science-fiction film following the German expressionist school, directed by Fritz Lang and set in a futuristic urban dystopia, depicting the social crisis between workers and owners. It is famous for being the most expensive silent film ever made, at a cost of about 5 million Reichsmark ($200 million when adjusted for inflation).
The most expensive silent film ever made
The first film to use handheld cameras and new editing methods
The 1927 Napoleon is an epic silent French film directed by Abel Gance displaying the rise of Napoleon from its school youth to the invasion of Italy. The film is often considered to be ahead of its time being one of the first to use handheld cameras and new editing methods.
A silent surrealist short film by debuting spanish director luis bunuel
Un Chien Andalou or An Andalusian Dog is a silent surrealist short film by debuting Spanish director Luis Bunuel and famous artist Salvador Dali. It is famous for being unconventional with a disjointed chronology and use of dream logic or Freudian free association in its narrative flow.
French silent film starring renée jeanne falconetti
The Passion of Joan of Arc is a French silent film starring Renée Jeanne Falconetti and directed by Carl Theodor Dreyer depicting the trial, imprisonment, torture and execution of Joan of Arc. It is widely regarded as a one of cinema greatest films, celebrated for its direction and main character excellent performance.
All Quiet on the Western Front is a 1930 American epic war film directed by Lewis Milestone and based on the Erich Maria Remarque novel of the same name. It is often considered one of the most realistic account of warfare in World War I.
1931 american epic war film directed by lewis milestone
First major german sound film
The Blue Angel is a film directed by Josef von Sternberg considered to be the first major German sound film as well as bringing to world fame actress Marlene Dietrich.
City Lights is a silent romantic comedy-drama film written, directed and starring Charlie Chaplin. It is often considered as one of the highest accomplishments of his prolific career. Although classified as a comedy, City Lights has an ending widely regarded as one of the most moving in cinema history.
One of charlie chaplin highest accomplishments of his prolific career
42nd Street is an American lively backstage musical directed by Lloyd Bacon. It was very successful at the box office and widely nominated for different prestigious films awards. The film is often considered a masterpiece in its genre and features on a variety of top cinema lists.
American lively backstage musical directed by lloyd bacon
Marx brothers anarchic comedy film
Duck Soup is a 1933 Marx Brothers anarchic comedy film directed by Leo McCarey and featuring the “Four Marx Brothers” including Groucho, Harpo, Chico and Zeppo. Although it wasn’t a really a commercial and critical hit, it since achieved the status of a classic and often considered the Marx Brothers’ finest film.
Famous gigantic island-dwelling gorilla-like creature
King Kong is a fantasy monster adventure film co-directed by Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack about the now famous gigantic island-dwelling gorilla-like creature called Kong who dies in an attempt to possess a beautiful young woman.
L’Atalante is a 1934 French film directed by Jean Vigo and starring Jean Dasté, Dita Parlo and Michel Simon. It has been hailed by many critics as one of the greatest films of all time.
French film directed by jean vigo
First full-length cell-animated feature in motion picture history
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was the first animated feature film produced in America and first to be produced by Walt Disney as well as the first full-length cel-animated feature in motion picture history. Following its success, various Walt Disney animated classics followed.
Olympia is a 1938 film by Leni Riefenstahl documenting the 1936 Summer Games and known to be the first documentary feature film on the Olympic Games ever made. The cinematography techniques employed were groundbreaking and universally admired, however the film remains controversial due to its political context.
First documentary feature film on the olympic games
The Rules of the Game or La Règle du jeu is a 1939 French film directed by Jean Renoir about upper-class French society just before the start of World War II. He was inspired by France greatest authors including Alfred de Musset’s Les Caprices de Marianne as well as Moliere and Marivaux.
1940 french film directed by jean renoir
Gone with the Wind is a American historical epic film directed by Victor Fleming and adapted from Margaret Mitchell’s Pulitzer-winning 1936 novel of the same name. It is the story of the American Civil War and Reconstruction era from a Southern point of view, starring Clark Gable and Vivien Leigh. It is known to be the first major film shot in colour.
American historical epic film directed by victor fleming
The Philadelphia Story is a 1940 American romantic comedy film directed by George Cukor and starring Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn. It is considered one of the best examples of a comedy of remarriage, a genre popular in the 1930s and 1940s, in which a couple divorce, flirt with outsiders and then remarry.
American romantic comedy film directed by george
His Girl Friday is an American screwball comedy film directed by Howard Hawks and starring Cary Grant as Walter Burns and Rosalind Russell as Hildy Johnson. It is famous for its rapid-fire dialogue.
American screwball comedy film directed by howard hawks
Drama film directed by john ford and based on john steinbeck’s pulitzer prize winning novel
The Grapes of Wrath is a drama film directed by John Ford and based on John Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize winning novel of the same name. The film follows an Oklahoma family across the United States journey during the Great Depression of the 1930s.
Considered the greatest movie of all time
Citizen Kane is an American drama film directed by and starring Orson Welles often considered the greatest movie of all time. It is famous for its innovative cinematography, music and narrative structure. The story displays the life and legacy of Charles Foster Kane, a character based upon the American newspaper magnate William Randolph Hearst.
Considered the first major work of the film noir genre
The Maltese Falcon is a film written and directed by directorial debut John Huston, based on the novel of the same name by Dashiell Hammett and featuring Humphrey Bogart. The story follows a private detective’s dealings with a jewel-encrusted statuette of a falcon mystery. It is considered the first major work of the film noir genre.
To Be or Not to Be is a American comedy directed by Ernst Lubitsch, about a troupe of actors in Nazi-occupied Warsaw who use their abilities at disguise and acting to fool the occupying troops. The title is a reference to the famous “To be, or not to be” in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
American comedy directed by ernst lubitsch
In Which We Serve is a British patriotic war film directed by David Lean and Noël Coward, based on the exploits of Captain Lord Louis Mountbatten, commander of the HMS Kelly destroyer which sunk during the Battle of Crete. The film made with the assistance of the Ministry of Information remains a classic example of wartime British cinema through its patriotic imagery of national unity and social cohesion within the context of the Second World War.
Classic example of wartime british cinema through its patriotic imagery of national unity
Casablanca is a American romantic drama film directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman. The story is about a man torn between love and virtue. Indeed he must choose between his love for a woman and helping her and her Czech Resistance leader husband escape from the Vichy-controlled Moroccan city of Casablanca to continue his fight against the Nazis.
American romantic drama film directed by michael curtiz
Considered the first italian neorealist film
Ossessione or Obsession is an Italian film based on the novel, The Postman Always Rings Twice, by James M. Cain. The film is Luchino Visconti’s first feature film and it is often considered the first Italian neorealist film.
Children of Paradise or Les Enfants du Paradis is a French film by Marcel Carné, made during the German occupation of France during World War II. It is the story of a beautiful courtesan, Garance, and the four men who love her in their own ways: a mime artist, an actor, a criminal and an aristocrat.
French film by marcel carné, made during the german occupation
Italian war drama film directed by roberto rossellini
Rome, Open City is an Italian war drama film, directed by Roberto Rossellini set in Rome during the Nazi occupation in 1944. The film won several awards at various film festivals and was also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.
A Matter of Life and Death is a romantic fantasy film set during World War II created by the British writer-director-producer team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger.
Romantic fantasy film set during world war ii
American comedy/drama film produced and directed by frank capra
It’s a Wonderful Life is an American comedy/drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra and based on the short story “The Greatest Gift” written by Philip Van Doren Stern. The film is about a man whose imminent suicide on Christmas Eve brings about the intervention of his guardian angel.
Bicycle Thieves is a Italian neorealist film directed by Vittorio De Sica about the story of a poor man searching the streets of Rome for his stolen bicycle. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Luigi Bartolini.
Italian neorealist film directed by vittorio de sica
Letter from an Unknown Woman is a 1948 film directed by Max Ophüls. It was based on the novella of the same name by Stefan Zweig. The film stars Joan Fontaine, Louis Jourdan, Mady Christians and Marcel Journet.
Film directed by max ophüls
Passport to Pimlico is a British comedy film directed by Henry Cornelius inspired by a true incident during the Second World War, when the royal family of the Netherlands fled to Canada.
British comedy film directed by henry cornelius
The Third Man is a British film noir directed by Carol Reed best known for its atmospheric cinematography, excellent performances and unique musical score.
British film noir directed by carol reed
Orpheus is a French film starring Jean Marais directed by Jean Cocteau as the central part of his Orphic Trilogy, which also consists of The Blood of a Poet (1930) and Testament of Orpheus (1960).
French film starring jean marais directed by jean cocteau
Film that introduced the master and japanese cinema
Rashomon is a crime mystery film directed by Akira Kurosawa, famous for being the film that introduced the master the and Japanese cinema to Western audiences. The film won many award including the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and an Academy Honorary Award.
One of the best musicals ever made
Singin’ in the Rain is an American comedy musical film starring, choreographed and directed by Gene Kelly as well as Stanley Donen. The film is a comic depiction of Hollywood during the transition from silent films to “talkies.” It is often described as one of the best musicals ever made.
Yasujiro ozu masterpiece
Tokyo Story is a Japanese film directed by Yasujiro Ozu and often regarded as his masterpiece. The film is about an aging couple who travel to Tokyo to visit their grown children, but find their children are too absorbed in their own lives to spend much time with their parents.
American drama film directed by elia kazan and stars marlon brando
On the Waterfront is a American drama film directed by Elia Kazan and stars Marlon Brando about union violence and corruption among longshoremen. Some say it was based on a series of articles written in the New York Sun by Malcolm Johnson. The film received eight Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director.
Romance feature film directed by douglas sirk
All That Heaven Allows is a romance feature film directed by Douglas Sirk and starring Jane Wyman and Rock Hudson. The story is about a well-to-do widow and a younger landscape designer falling in love.
Rebel Without a Cause is a American drama film Directed by Nicholas Ray about emotionally confused suburban, middle-class teenagers. The film has today achieved landmark status for the acting of cultural icon James Dean who unfortunately died before the film’s release and it often considered his most celebrated role.
Landmark status for the acting of cultural icon james dean
First film of the apu trilogy
Pather Panchali is a drama film written and directed by Satyajit Ray based on a Bengali novel of the same name. It is the first film of the Apu trilogy which depicts the childhood of the protagonist Apu in the rural countryside of Bengal in the 1920s. It was Rays’ first feature film as well as the first movie from independent India to attract major international critical attention. It is today considered one of the greatest films ever made.
The Night of the Hunter is an American thriller film directed by Charles Laughton and starring Robert Mitchum. It is based on the true story of Harry Powers hanged in 1932 for the murders of two widows and three children in West Virginia. The film is famous for its lyric and expressionistic style which influenced later directors such as David Lynch and Martin Scorsese.
Famous for its lyric and expressionistic style
Established bergman as a world-renowned director
The Seventh Seal is a Swedish film written and directed by Ingmar Bergman. It is the story of a medieval knight and a game of chess he plays with the personification of Death who has come to take his life. The film established Bergman as a world-renowned director and is considered a major classic of world cinema.
Vertigo is a 1958 cult psychological thriller by famous suspense director Alfred Hitchcock about a retired police detective suffering from acrophobia who is hired as a private investigator to follow the wife of an acquaintance to uncover the mystery of her peculiar behaviour.
Psychological thriller by famous suspense director alfred hitchcock
Ashes and Diamonds is a Polish film directed by famous east European director Andrzej Wajda, based on the 1948 novel by writer Jerzy Andrzejewski. The film completed Wajda’s war films trilogy following A Generation (1954) and Kanal (1956).
Polish film directed by famous east european director andrzej wajda