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

The Wild Bunch (1969)
Director: Sam Peckinpah
Peckinpah’s lament for the dying West plays on his favourite theme — men out of step with their time — and embroiders it with the most memorable bloodshed imaginable. John Woo owes his career to this. Read Review

Spirit Of The Beehive (1973)
Director: Víctor Erice
A story of a young Spanish girl, the aftermath of the civil war, Frankenstein’s Monster and a father’s obsession with bees, this is a triumph of dreamlike style. And one of Guillermo del Toro’s faves. Read Review

Once Upon A Time In America (1984)
Director: Sergio Leone
It took Leone years to realise this chronicle of the lives of Jewish ghetto youths, and he couldn’t quite let it go in the editing suite. Still, it’s a majestic drama that repays endless viewings. Read Review

Star Wars Episode VI: Return Of The Jedi (1983)
Director: Richard Marquand
The weakest of the original trilogy, Marquand’s send-off still does more than enough to earn its place in movie history. The triple-stranded climax is masterful. Read Review

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When Harry Met Sally (1989)
Director: Rob Reiner
Reiner’s rom-com is sweet-natured and old-fashioned, yet with a deliciously dirty streak and game performances from Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan. Read Review

Magnolia (1999)
Director: Paul Thomas Anderson
An ensemble piece about the bonds that bring a disparate group of Los Angelinos together, it’s no coincidence that Anderson’s instant classic is loved by so many. Read Review

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Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
Director: John Hughes
The sportos, the motorheads, geeks, sluts, bloods, waistoids, dweebies and dickheads all adore him, and so do we. John Hughes’ righteous dude is unquestionably too cool for school. Read Review

The King Of Comedy (1983)
Director: Martin Scorsese
De Niro’s Rupert Pupkin is the self-deluded ying to Travis Bickle’s sociopathic yang. Scorsese’s satirical and deeply discomfiting black comedy deserves its place in this list for its dangerously desperate protagonist alone. Read Review

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Carrie (1976)
Director: Brian De Palma
Most horrors make their female lead the plucky, survivalist scream queen. Carrie stands out by making her meek, awkward and responsible for supernaturally charged mass-murder. Read Review

Blue Velvet (1986)
Director: David Lynch
Never have Lynch’s beautiful and bizarre visions been more unsettling than here, as he unearths the dirt that lies beneath a seemingly genteel American suburbia. At a stretch it’s a form of neo-noir. Then again, this is Lynch, and definitions never stick. 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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In conjunction with the poll results, we produced 100 individual covers celebrating some of the key films in the list. View 100 Covers

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