Empire's 500 Greatest Movies Of All TimeEmpire's 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time Empire's 500 Greatest Movies Of All Time

The Big Red One (1980)
Director: Samuel Fuller
Sam Fuller had brought leather-tough visions of war to the big screen before, but The Big Red One is his hard-nosed masterpiece, based largely on the former crime reporter's own experiences battling across North Africa and Europe during World War II, and the project he'd held close to his heart for most of his filmmaking career. Legend has it that one studio wanted Fuller to cast John Wayne as the growling, indurate sergeant who, along with four privates (ultimately to include Mark Hamill), is one of the division's few survivors. Fuller opted not to make the movie rather than have the Duke headline it - which sums up exactly what kind of war movie this is. When, eventually, he rolled, the part went to Lee Marvin, who carries the movie to its devastating concentration-camp-liberation conclusion without breaking a sweat. One suspects, also, that Steven Spielberg took notes during the gut-wrenching Omaha beach sequence. Read Review

Scream (1996)
Director: Wes Craven
The self-referential irony may have become less hip in the aftermath of countless pretenders, but the brutal effectiveness of Craven's slasher - and his ghost-faced killer creation - remain a genuine genre highpoint. Read Review

The Son's Room (2001)
Director: Nanni Moretti
A heartbreaking look at a father's grief after the death of his son, Moretti's Palme d'Or winner is lifted from the maudlin by his thoughtful and tender treatment. Read Review

Topsy-Turvy (1999)
Director: Mike Leigh
Stepping away from the kitchen sink, Leigh gave us this fabulous study of theatrical types as they create the first-ever production of Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado. Read Review

The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty (1947)
Director: Norman Z. McLeod
The story of a mild-mannered accountant and the imaginary fantasy world he visits every time reality gets too tough, this Danny Kaye vehicle plays like a Technicolor version of Billy Liar. Read Review

About The Poll
This poll was conducted in November 2008. The list was compiled using votes from Empire readers, Hollywood actors, actress and key film critics.

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