On this list, we cover the top-rated films according to IMDb users and why you should absolutely watch these classics of wide consensus.
Cast: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Diane Keaton
IMDb Rating: 9.2/10
Francis Ford Coppola’s Godfather is hailed as one of the greatest films to come out of Hollywood for a reason: the first humanizing attempt of the gangsters. Their interior emotions, conflicts, and familial tensions all were prioritized.
Moreover, the innovative cinematography of 1945 New York City is canonical. The film is premised upon the Corleone Crime family and their head Vito Corleone. Influential tycoons and famous singers, one and all reach out to the Don as he is known for fairness. Al Pacino’s most memorable performance can be seen in this film.
Cast: Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd, Scatman Crothers
IMDb Rating: 8.4/10
Every frame, every dialogue, and every gesture in this Kubrick masterpiece is calculated and frightening. The elusive characters and their unnatural speech all point to their unreliability.
The film opens with a conversational interview with Jack (Jack Nicholson), for a caretaker job at the Overlook Hotel which remains snowbound for several months every year. But the very horrific fate of the previous caretaker who killed himself and his wife in this hotel is revealed. Jack reassures the man that his wife will be fascinated by the idea; I doubt if he ever even told her. And that itself is the commencement of the horrors of the film.
Cast: Morgan Freeman, Tim Robbins, Clancy Brown, Bob Gunton
IMDb Rating: 9.3/10
This film gives us not just glimpses of life in prison but actually transports us there. The slow, grimey and painful lives led by the convicts at Shawshank. This Frank Darabont film is one of the most popular films of all time. It was based on a story by Stephen King.
Andy is sentenced to a life sentence on charges of murder of his wife and her lover. The film follows the life and struggles of Andy Dufresne and his inmate friend Ellis “Red” Redding. It is an excruciating watch as Andy gradually works toward his goal, and exposes the truth.
12 Angry Men
Cast: Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb, Joseph Sweeney, Martin Balsam.
12 Angry Men is an American classic directed by Sidney Lumet. The complexities of consensus and the differences even in unanimity are precisely documented. The impersonality of the film, by not disclosing the name of the juror until almost before the credits, promotes logic.
Set on the hottest day of the year in a dingy New York City courtroom; a jury has put an eighteen-year adolescent boy on trial. The jurors are asked to vote in anonymous ballots on whether or not to send the boy to death row. They have to all unanimously vote in order for that, but only one of them votes “not guilty” as this juror has a doubt.
Cast:Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley, Embeth Davidtz
IMDb Rating: 9/10
Pfefferberg’s ( one of the holocaust survivors), life’s mission was to tell the story of Oskar Schindler. Schindler was responsible for saving about a thousand Jewish citizens from Auschwitz; but he was also a gambler, driven by lust and greed for power. This is hailed to be Spielberg’s highest cinematic achievement.
Set at the beginning of the Second World War, Schindler bribes, deceives, and schemes to save the Jews from the nazis but the messianic situation changes when the Germans start to lose the war. Now, he is the one who might need saving.
Cast:John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Uma Thurman, Bruce Willis, Quentin Tarantino
Tarantino has successfully redefined the genre of crime thrillers, over and over. The cinematic display of senseless violence unfolds as visual poetry. The unusual humor and the banality of quotidian things from feet massages to the metric system come together to form nuanced images of each character.
Vincent Vega and Jules are hitmen and carry out their boss’s order: Marcellus Wallace. Travolta’s Vincent has some interesting interactions with his boss’s wife: she loves to go “skiing”. Then there are references to old Hollywood classics like Bonnie and Clyde. Even if you do not understand bits of it because of its oddly creative chronology, you will understand the whole of it.
Cast:Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise, Sally Field
Based on the Eric Roth novel, this film by Zemeckis is an American favorite. The film has bagged six Academy Award wins including Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Actor.
Tom Hank’s Forrest is born with a learning disability and is forced to wear a corrective brace for his spine. Because of his disabilities, he is mercilessly bullied and also falls in love with Jenny. While Forrest joins the army and inspires Elvis and John Lennon, Jenny becomes a hippie with a drug abuse problem. It is a beautiful story of love, war, and hope.
Cast: Edward Norton, Brad Pitt, Helena Bonham Carter, Jared Leto
The first rule of Fight Club is you DO NOT talk about fight club. Crowned to be the greatest Fincher film ever, this will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.
Talking about the premise of Fight Club (which is based on the novel of the same name by Chuck Palahniuk) will be a reductionist task.
Our narrator/ protagonist is a regular white-collar American with a staple penchant for Ikea. He asks his doctor for sleeping pills but he refuses. Instead, the doctor asks him to visit support groups for men with testicular cancer. Then he comes across Tyler Durden on a plane who tells him the pitfalls of capitalistic consumerism. And they go on a wild goose chase for purpose and lost masculinity.
The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly (1966)
Cast- Clint Eastwood, Eli Wallach, Lee Van Cleef.
IMDb Rating: 8.8/10
Clint Eastwood’s portrayal of Blondie remains one of the most iconic treasure hunt ventures. This classic Italian Spaghetti Western marks the ending of the Dollars Trilogy. The 1966 film is filled with tensile long shots which are the director Sergio Leone’s signature.
The hunt for $200,000 worth of treasure gold is set against the backdrop of the 1862 American Civil War. The Good, Blondie, and Tuco, a wanted criminal form an alliance to loot bounties. Angel Eyes, The Bad is a morally questionable mercenary who completes the trio in a quest for treasure. While just Tuco knows the name of the cemetery where the treasure is hidden; Blondie knows the grave, forcing them to keep each other alive
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Cillian Murphy, Tom Hardy
One of the most mind-bending films from the master of science fiction, Christopher Nolan. Cobb and Arthur do industrial espionage by infiltrating people’s dreams and subconscious. This world of dreams is guided by a strange set of rules making; the whir of movement in time: confusing but it is a thrilling watch.
Saito an influential businessman gives Cobb a proposal: to revoke his criminal status, Cobb has to implant the idea in Saito’s competitor to liquidate the company.