The greatest film of the 21st century is… MULHOLLAND DRIVE?!

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Mulholland Drive

Is Mulholland Drive the greatest film of this century (so far)? Some critics seem to think so…

Hey, I can’t disparage David Lynch much. Between Eraserhead and Blue Velvet he has a certain monopoly on the surreal noir sub-genre. Less so with The Lost Highway, which after a recent watching I can safely say is a confusing and pointless waste of time. (And since it will come up, Twin Peaks is vastly overrated – a 2 season show that went nowhere in the first and died in the second.)

I can’t recall Mulholland Drive too well, but a new BBC Culture survey of film critics lists this as the best of the 21st century so far. The list was compiled by asking several hundred critics to give their top 10, out of which the final top 100 were distilled.

This may explain a lot: I have little time for critics and reviewers, since there is a propensity for enjoying the sound of your own voice. Critics are always at a risk of sounding self-important… and boy, is this a self-important list. Here are the top 25:

  1. “Mulholland Drive” (David Lynch, 2001)
  2. “In the Mood for Love” (Wong Kar-wai, 2000)
  3. “There Will Be Blood” (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2007)
  4. “Spirited Away” (Hayao Miyazaki, 2001)
  5. “Boyhood” (Richard Linklater, 2014)
  6. “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” (Michel Gondry, 2004)
  7. “The Tree of Life” (Terrence Malick, 2011)
  8. “Yi Yi: A One and a Two” (Edward Yang, 2000)
  9. “Separation” (Asghar Farhadi, 2011)
  10. “Inside Llewyn Davis” (Joel and Ethan Coen, 2013)
  11. “No Country For Old Men” (Joel and Ethan Coen, 2007)
  12. “Children of Men” (Alfonso Cuarón, 2006)
  13. “Zodiac” (David Fincher, 2007)
  14. “The Act of Killing” (Joshua Oppenheimer, 2012)
  15. “4 Months, 3 Weeks & 2 Days” (Cristian Mungiu, 2007)
  16. “Holy Motors” (Leos Carax, 2012)
  17. “Pan’s Labyrinth” (Guillermo Del Toro, 2006)
  18. “The White Ribbon” (Michael Haneke, 2009)
  19. “Mad Max: Fury Road” (George Miller, 2015)
  20. “Synecdoche, New York” (Charlie Kaufman, 2008)
  21. “The Grand Budapest Hotel” (Wes Anderson, 2014)
  22. “Caché” (Michael Haneke, 2005)
  23. “Lost in Translation” (Sofia Coppola, 2003)
  24. “The Master” (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2012)
  25. “Memento” (Christopher Nolan, 2001)
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Some of those are certainly worthy of the list and quite a number I have never heard of. But others are a tad glaring. Zodiac is not that great and the Grand Budapest Hotel was cool, but also a pure paint-by-numbers Wes Anderson movie. Boyhood is overrated and The Master was incredibly boring.

Then again, maybe that’s my own self-importance talking. What do you think – are these the greatest movies of our new century so far?

Last Updated: August 24, 2016

James

A total movie glutton, nothing is too bad or too obscure to watch, unless it’s something like The Human Centipede. If you enjoyed that, there is something wrong with you. But bless you anyway – even video nasties need love…

  • Alien Emperor Trevor

    Mulholland Drive was a noir-y crime movie? I know I’ve watched it, but I don’t remember it either and couldn’t be arsed to google.

    I’ve watched 5 or 6 of those, one of the no.100s, Requiem for a Dream, was better than all of them.

  • Sandelk

    This is a terrible list – who gave these guys the right to be critics… Apart from maybe 5 or 6 movies mentioned that deserve to be on this list, the rest do not deserve to be on it. Not bad films, but not amazing films.

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