Some Interesting Facts About the IMDb Top 250

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From August 17th, 2015 through July 4th, 2017, I watched 247 of the 250 movies on the IMDb Top 250. This obviously meant watching several movies a month in order to keep a consistent pace and accomplish the task without losing momentum — or hope of finishing.

Starting was easy. I had an infant that wasn’t sleeping anyway, and a friend that was providing access to a database of movies.  By the end, that access was cut off; my pace slowed because I had to rent the majority of the movies, and both of my children had bedtime routines.

250 movies would (obviously) feature an array of themes.  Here is a literal array of them.

By no means are the Bible and a bunch of 20th century films comparable, but don’t you find it fascinating that some of the more common struggles of man are featured in the Word of God as well as the most popular films of all time?

Meanwhile, never in history have so many movies been so accessible.  Streaming services are now the norm.

Several obscure foreign films populated the list, as well as nearly century-old movies from a bygone era of cinema. Watching many of these films would have required expensive overseas purchases or partially restored versions only a decade ago.

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The Oldest Films:

1) The Kid (1921)
2) The Gold Rush (1925)
3) The General (1926)
4) Metropolis (1927)
5) M (1931)
6) City Lights (1931)
7) It Happened One Night (1934)
8) Modern Times (1936)
9) Wizard of Oz (1939)
10) Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)

The Most Recent Films:

1) Inside Out (2015)
2) Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
3) Interstellar (2014)
4) Whiplash (2014)
5) Gone Girl (2014)
6) The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
7) Wild Tales (2014)
8) Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
9) The Imitation Game (2014)
10) X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

 

War In Film

War and conflict is a terrible byproduct of society, but a prevailing theme in the most prestigious films.

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Color is the clear choice in filmmaking, and it’s cheaper than ever.

Some films like “The Wizard of Oz” and “Gone With the Wind” seemingly used color as soon as it was available; others like the French “La Haine” and the Scorcese masterpiece “Raging Bull” were stylistically left in black and white.

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My Biased Favorites:

Return of the King
Forrest Gump
Rear Window
Lion King
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Gladiator
Princess Bride
Truman Show
Groundhog Day
The Best Years of Our Lives
Back to the Future
It’s A Wonderful Life

My Wife’s Biased Favorites:

Dog Day Afternoon
Some Like it Hot
The King’s Speech
Inception
Amadeus
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels
How to Train Your Dragon
There WIll Be Blood
Shutter Island
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Rear Window
Psycho

It seems my pallet didn’t change much, but hers was reshaped dramatically. Of course, it’s also possible I just have a more refined taste for film, since most of my favorites were already on this list, while her prevailing favorites were often left off.


 

Where in the World Did These Movies Come From?

A refreshing aspect of this project was the presence of foreign film — something I was really unfamiliar with before.  Several of them turned out to be favorites or severely underrated. These movies came from all over the place, but naturally the U.S. kind of monopolized the list.

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You can check out how I reranked the films here.

What did you find most interesting about this analysis?

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