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Film Comment’s End-of-the-Decade Critics’ Poll

By Film Comment

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This past fall, Film Comment conducted an international poll of critics, programmers, academics, filmmakers, and others to identify the top films and filmmakers of the decade. In addition, we asked participants to select the individual (or thing) that cast the longest shadow across the last 10 years, for better or for worse, and the film that most decisively defined the “Aughts,” followed by brief explanatory statements. Forthwith is the extended version of the decade’s top films—the rest of the best. To read more from our respondents—including comments, films and filmmakers of the decades, and personal lists—grab a copy of the January/February 2010 issue! Extended readers' poll results and comments here. Point totals are in bold.

Mulholland Drive David Lynch

1. Mulholland Drive David Lynch, U.S., 2001 2808

In the Mood for Love

2. In the Mood for Love Wong Kar Wai, Hong Kong, 2000 2687

Yi Yi Edward Yang

3. Yi Yi Edward Yang, Taiwan/Japan, 2000 1833

Syndromes and a Century Apichatpong Weerasethakul

4. Syndromes and a Century Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Thailand/Austria/France, 2006 1738

There Will Be Blood

5. There Will Be Blood P.T. Anderson, U.S., 2007 1664

Death of Mr. Lazarescu Cristi Puiu

6. The Death of Mr. Lazarescu Cristi Puiu, Romania, 2005 1407

A History of Violence

7. A History of Violence David Cronenberg, U.S./Canada, 2005 1303

Tropical Malady

8. Tropical Malady Apichatpong Weerasethakul, France/Thailand/Italy/Germany, 2004 1301

4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days Cristi Mungiu

9. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days Cristi Mungiu, Romania, 2007 1249

The New World Terrence Malick

10. The New World Terrence Malick, U.S., 2005 1223

Platform Jia Zhangke

11. Platform Jia Zhangke, Hong Kong/Japan/France, 2000 1206

Zodiac David Fincher

12. Zodiac David Fincher, U.S., 2007 1143

The Intruder Claire Denis

13. The Intruder Claire Denis, France, 2004 1110

The Son Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne

14. The Son Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne, Belgium/France, 2002 1089

Dogville Lars von Trier

15. Dogville Lars von Trier, Denmark/Sweden/France/U.K./Germany/Netherlands, 2003 1084

Caché Michael Haneke

16. Caché Michael Haneke, France/Austria/Germany/Italy, 2005 1083

Kings and Queen Arnaud Desplechin

17. Kings and Queen Arnaud Desplechin, France, 2005 1080

Elephant Gus Van Sant

18. Elephant Gus Van Sant, U.S., 2003 1036

The Royal Tenenbaums Wes Anderson

19. The Royal Tenenbaums Wes Anderson, U.S., 2001 1007

Before Sunset Richard Linklater

20. Before Sunset Richard Linklater, U.S., 2004 1005

Spirited Away Hayao Miyazaki

21. Spirited Away Hayao Miyazaki, Japan, 2001 1000

The Gleaners and I Agnès Varda

22. The Gleaners and I Agnès Varda, France, 2000 985

Goodbye, Dragon Inn Tsai Ming-liang

23. Goodbye, Dragon Inn Tsai Ming-liang, Taiwan, 2003 975

The World Jia Zhangke

24. The World Jia Zhangke, China/Japan/France, 2004 974

Talk to Her Pedro Almodóvar

25. Talk to Her Pedro Almodóvar, Spain, 2002 973

Inland Empire David Lynch

26. Inland Empire David Lynch, U.S./France/Poland, 2006 960

Still Life Jia Zhangke

27. Still Life Jia Zhangke, China/Hong Kong, 2006 934

Colossal Youth Pedro Costa

28. Colossal Youth Pedro Costa, France/Portugal/Switzerland, 2006 929

Russian Ark Alexander Sokurov

29. Russian Ark Alexander Sokurov, Russia/Germany, 2002 870

A.I.: Artificial Intelligence

30. A.I.: Artificial Intelligence Steven Spielberg, U.S., 2001 850

In Praise of Love Jean-Luc Godard

31. In Praise of Love Jean-Luc Godard, France/Switzerland 2001 834

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Michel Gondry

32. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Michel Gondry, U.S., 2004 832

No Country for Old Men Joel & Ethan Coen

33. No Country for Old Men Joel & Ethan Coen, U.S., 2007 791

Werckmeister Harmonies Béla Tarr

34. Werckmeister Harmonies Béla Tarr, Hungary/Italy/Germany/France, 2000 778

Grizzly Man Werner Herzog

35. Grizzly Man Werner Herzog, U.S./Canada, 2005 777

Three Times Hou Hsiao-hsien

36. Three Times Hou Hsiao-hsien, Taiwan, 2005 767

Café Lumière Hou Hsiao-hsien

37. Café Lumière Hou Hsiao-hsien, Japan/Taiwan, 2003 761

Regular Lovers Philippe Garrel

38. Regular Lovers Philippe Garrel, France, 2005 759

Blissfully Yours Apichatpong Weerasethakul

39. Blissfully Yours Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Thailand/France, 2002 713

I’m Not There Todd Haynes

40. I’m Not There Todd Haynes, U.S./Germany, 2007 703

2046 Wong Kar Wai

41. 2046 Wong Kar Wai, China/Hong Kong/France, 2005 700

In Vanda’s Room Pedro Costa

42. In Vanda’s Room Pedro Costa, Portugal/Germany/Switzerland, 2000 654

Los Angeles Plays Itself Thom Andersen

43. Los Angeles Plays Itself Thom Andersen, U.S., 2003 649

Millennium Mambo Hou Hsiao-hsien

44. Millennium Mambo Hou Hsiao-hsien, France/U.S./Spain/Greece, 2001 636

La Commune (Paris, 1871) Peter Watkins

45. La Commune (Paris, 1871) Peter Watkins, France, 2000 632

The Hurt Locker Kathryn Bigelow

46. The Hurt Locker Kathryn Bigelow, U.S., 2009 623

Million Dollar Baby Clint Eastwood

47. Million Dollar Baby Clint Eastwood, U.S., 2004 607

What Time Is It There? Tsai Ming-liang

48. What Time Is It There? Tsai Ming-liang, Taiwan/France, 2001 600

demonlover Olivier Assayas

49. demonlover Olivier Assayas, France, 2002 583

The Headless Woman Lucrecia Martel

50. The Headless Woman Lucrecia Martel, Argentina/Spain/France/Italy, 2009 581

La Captive Chantal Akerman

51. La Captive Chantal Akerman, France/Belgium, 2000 580

Esther Kahn Arnaud Desplechin

52. Esther Kahn Arnaud Desplechin, France/U.K., 2000 579

Notre musique Jean-Luc Godard

53. Notre musique Jean-Luc Godard, France/Switzerland, 2004 562

Distant Nuri Bilge Ceylan

54. Distant Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey, 2002 559

Saraband Ingmar Bergman

55. Saraband Ingmar Bergman, Sweden, 2003 553

The Holy Girl Lucrecia Martel

56. The Holy Girl Lucrecia Martel, Argentina/Italy/Netherlands/Spain, 2004 550

Y tu mamá también Alfonso Cuarón

57. Y tu mamá también Alfonso Cuarón, Mexico, 2001 537

Brokeback Mountain Ang Lee

58. Brokeback Mountain Ang Lee, U.S., 2005 537

Children of Men Alfonso Cuarón

59. Children of Men Alfonso Cuarón, Japan/U.K./U.S., 2006 537

Ten Abbas Kiarostami

60. Ten Abbas Kiarostami, France/Iran/U.S., 2002 527

Silent Light Carlos Reygadas

61. Silent Light Carlos Reygadas, Mexico/France/Netherlands, 2007 527

La ciénaga Lucrecia Martel

62. La ciénaga Lucrecia Martel, Argentina/Spain, 2001 511

L’Enfant Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne

63. L’Enfant Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne, Belgium/France, 2005 511

Star Spangled to Death Ken Jacobs

64. Star Spangled to Death Ken Jacobs, U.S., 2004 508

Flight of the Red Balloon Hou Hsiao-hsien

65. Flight of the Red Balloon Hou Hsiao-hsien, Taiwan/France, 2008 498

RR James Benning

66. RR James Benning, U.S., 2007 491

The House of Mirth Terence Davies

67. The House of Mirth Terence Davies, U.K./France/Germany/U.S., 2000 484

25th Hour Spike Lee

68. 25th Hour Spike Lee, U.S. 2002 469

35 Shots of Rum Claire Denis

69. 35 Shots of Rum Claire Denis, France/Germany, 2008 460

Summer Hours Olivier Assayas

70. Summer Hours Olivier Assayas, France, 2009 453

The Host Bong Joon-ho

71. The Host Bong Joon-ho, South Korea, 2007 441

Adaptation Spike Jonze

72. Adaptation Spike Jonze, U.S., 2002 438

Lost in Translation Sofia Coppola

73. Lost in Translation Sofia Coppola, U.S./Japan, 2003 435

Gerry Gus Van Sant

74. Gerry Gus Van Sant, U.S., 2002 433

Private Fears in Public Places Alain Resnais

75. Private Fears in Public Places Alain Resnais, France/Italy, 2006 430

My Winnipeg Guy Maddin

76. My Winnipeg Guy Maddin, Canada, 2007 430

Punch-Drunk Love P.T. Anderson

77. Punch-Drunk Love P.T. Anderson, U.S., 2002 426

Fat Girl Catherine Breillat

78. Fat Girl Catherine Breillat, France/Italy, 2001 422

The Departed Martin Scorsese

79. The Departed Martin Scorsese, U.S./Hong Kong, 2006 422

far from heaven todd haynes

80. Far from Heaven Todd Haynes, U.S./France, 2002 421

Donnie Darko

81. Donnie Darko Richard Kelly, U.S., 2001 413

Moolade

82. Moolaadé Ousmane Sembene, Burkina Faso/Morocco/Tunisia/Cameroon/France, 2004 410

Woman on the Beach Hong Sang Soo

83. Woman on the Beach Hong Sang-soo, South Korea, 2006 407

Memories of Murder Bong Joon-ho

84. Memories of Murder Bong Joon-ho, South Korea, 2003 405

West of the Tracks

85. West of the Tracks Wang Bing, China, 2003 398

Wendy and Lucy

86. Wendy and Lucy Kelly Reichardt, U.S., 2008 395

Trouble Every Day

87. Trouble Every Day Claire Denis, France/Germany/Japan, 2001 390

Femme Fatale Brian De Palma

88. Femme Fatale Brian De Palma, U.S./France, 2002 386

Songs from the Second Floor

89. Songs from the Second Floor Roy Andersson, Sweden, 2000 386

Letters from Iwo Jima

90. Letters from Iwo Jima Clint Eastwood, U.S., 2006 379

Gran Torino

91. Gran Torino Clint Eastwood, U.S., 2008 375

Assassination of Jesse James

92. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford Andrew Dominik, U.S., 2007 374

Last Days Gus Van Sant

93. Last Days Gus Van Sant, U.S., 2005 368

The Man Without a Past Aki Kaurismäki

94. The Man Without a Past Aki Kaurismäki, Finland/Germany/France, 2002 368

When the Levees Broke Spike Lee

95. When the Levees Broke Spike Lee, U.S. 2006 360

Best of Youth

96. The Best of Youth Marco Tullio Giordana, Italy, 2003 358

Turning Gate

97. Turning Gate Hong Sang-soo, South Korea 2002 356

24 City Jia Zhangke

98. 24 City Jia Zhangke, China/Hong Kong/Japan, 2008 352

In the City of Sylvia José Luis Guerín

99. In the City of Sylvia José Luis Guerín, Spain/France, 2007 352

The White Ribbon Michael Haneke

100. The White Ribbon Michael Haneke, Austria/Germany/France/Italy, 2009 348

Participants: Gilbert Adair, Sam Adams, Florence Almozini, Thom Andersen, Melissa Anderson, Dudley Andrew, Geoff Andrew, David Ansen, Álvaro Arroba, Anjelika Artyukh, Michael Atkinson, Miriam Bale, Alberto Barbera, Michael Barker, Margaret Barton-Fumo, Jeanine Basinger, Marjorie Baumgarten, Raymond Bellour, Michael Berry, Stig Björkman, Livia Bloom, Frédéric Bonnaud, Nicole Brenez, Richard Brody, Andrew Bujalski, Joumane Chahine, Michael Chaiken, Andrew Chan, Chris Chang, Tom Charity, Paolo Cherchi Usai, Godfrey Cheshire, Li Cheuk-to, Ian Christie, Michel Ciment, Jem Cohen, Richard Combs, Mark Cousins, Noah Cowan, David Cox, Travis Crawford, Gary Crowdus, Doug Cummings, Giulia D’Agnolo Vallan, Mike D’Angelo, Evan Davis, Michel Demopoulos, Arnaud Desplechin, Sam Di Iorio, Anton Dolin, Lisa Dombrowski, Bilge Ebiri, Cheryl Eddy, David Edelstein, David Fear, Leslie Felperin, Paul Fileri, Richard Foreman, Scott Foundas, Lizzie Francke, Patrick Friel, Roger Garcia, Leonardo García-Tsao, Charlotte Garson, Susan Gerhard, John Gianvito, Eugène Green, Stefan Grissemann, Larry Gross, Haden Guest, Tom Gunning, Howard Hampton, Piers Handling, Molly Haskell, Shigehiko Hasumi, Sandra Hebron, Eugene Hernandez, J. Hoberman, Zdenek Holy, Travis Hoover, Bill Horrigan, Robert Horton, Alexander Horwath, Marcus Hu, Matthew Hubbell, Christoph Huber, Nick James, Jia Zhangke, Thierry Jobin, J.R. Jones, Kristin M. Jones, Kent Jones, Serge Kaganski, Laurence Kardish, Danny Kasman, Laura Kern, Dohoon Kim, Lewis Klahr, Stuart Klawans, Uri Klein, Gabe Klinger, Robert Koehler, Michael Koresky, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, Jean-Marc Lalanne, Nathan Lee, Elisabeth Lequeret, Diego Lerer, Jonathan Lethem, Dennis Lim, Phillip Lopate, Jan Lumholdt, Guy Maddin, Adrian Martin, Todd McCarthy, Maitland McDonagh, Mark McElhatten, Don McMahon, Gary Meyer, Olaf Möller, Marco Mueller, Amir Muhammad, Rob Nelson, Katja Nicodemus, Geoffrey O’Brien, Mark Olsen, Damon Packard, Gilberto Perez, Jake Perlin, Vladan Petkovic, Andréa Picard, Tony Pipolo, John Powers, James Quandt, Quintín, Nicolas Rapold, Megan Ratner, Jean-Francois Rauger, Tony Rayns, Carlos Reviriego, Bérénice Reynaud, Jim Ridley, Pierre Rissient, Kong Rithdee, João Pedro Rodrigues, Jonathan Romney, Rachel Rosen, Jonathan Rosenbaum, Joshua Rothkopf, Sukhdev Sandhu, Andrew Sarris, Richard Schickel, Regina Schlagnitweit, Alex Leo Serban, Gene Seymour, Girish Shambu, Josh Siegel, Irma Simanskyte, Alissa Simon, P. Adams Sitney, Gavin Smith, Vivian Sobchak, Chuck Stephens, Bob Strauss, Chris Stults, Daniel Stuyck, Jim Supanick, Amy Taubin, José Teodoro, David Thomson, Kenneth Turan, Keith Uhlich, Noel Vera, Tom Vick, Peter von Bagh, John Waters, Ryan Werner, Brynn White, Donald Wilson, Jessica Winter, Sergio Wolf, Manuel Yáñez Murillo, Genevieve Yue, David Zuckerman

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