Best Picture by National Society of Film Critics

All winners of the 'National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Film' from 1966 through 2016.

Last updated: January 29th, 2017


Weight: 25


Detractions

  1. Limited to ~50 years or less (-50)
  2. Yearly award (-25)

Films (52)

1. Moonlight

Directed by Barry Jenkins | R | 111 min | 2016|

A timeless story of human self-discovery and connection, Moonlight chronicles the life of a young black man from childhood to adulthood as he struggles to find his place in the world while growing up in a rough neighborhood of Miami.

Stream it on: Amazon iTunes link

2. Spotlight

Directed by Tom McCarthy | R | 128 min | 2015|

The true story of how the Boston Globe uncovered the massive scandal of child molestation and cover-up within the local Catholic Archdiocese, shaking the entire Catholic Church to its core.

Stream it on: Amazon iTunes link

3. Goodbye to Language

Directed by Jean-Luc Godard | 70 min | 2014|

The idea is simple: A married woman and a single man meet. They love, they argue, fists fly. A dog strays between town and country. The seasons pass. The man and woman meet again. The dog ...

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4. Inside Llewyn Davis

Directed by Ethan Coen, Joel Coen | R | 104 min | 2013|

A week in the life of a young singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961.

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5. Amour

Directed by Michael Haneke | PG-13 | 127 min | 2012|

Georges and Anne are an octogenarian couple. They are cultivated, retired music teachers. Their daughter, also a musician, lives in Britain with her family. One day, Anne has a stroke, and the couple's bond of love is severely tested.

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6. Melancholia

Directed by Lars von Trier | R | 130 min | 2011|

Two sisters find their already strained relationship challenged as a mysterious new planet threatens to collide with Earth.

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7. The Social Network

Directed by David Fincher | PG-13 | 120 min | 2010|

Harvard student Mark Zuckerberg creates the social networking site that would become known as Facebook, but is later sued by two brothers who claimed he stole their idea, and the co-founder who was later squeezed out of the business.

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8. Waltz with Bashir

Directed by Ari Folman | R | 90 min | 2008|

An Israeli film director interviews fellow veterans of the 1982 invasion of Lebanon to reconstruct his own memories of his term of service in that conflict.

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9. The Hurt Locker

Directed by Kathryn Bigelow | R | 131 min | 2008|

During the Iraq War, a Sergeant recently assigned to an army bomb squad is put at odds with his squad mates due to his maverick way of handling his work.

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10. There Will Be Blood

Directed by Paul Thomas Anderson | R | 158 min | 2007|

A story of family, religion, hatred, oil and madness, focusing on a turn-of-the-century prospector in the early days of the business.

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11. Pan's Labyrinth

Directed by Guillermo del Toro | R | 118 min | 2006|

In the falangist Spain of 1944, the bookish young stepdaughter of a sadistic army officer escapes into an eerie but captivating fantasy world.

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12. Capote

Directed by Bennett Miller | R | 114 min | 2005|

In 1959, Truman Capote learns of the murder of a Kansas family and decides to write a book about the case. While researching for his novel In Cold Blood, Capote forms a relationship with one of the killers, Perry Smith, who is on death row.

Stream it on: iTunes link

13. Million Dollar Baby

Directed by Clint Eastwood | PG-13 | 132 min | 2004|

A determined woman works with a hardened boxing trainer to become a professional.

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14. American Splendor

Directed by Shari Springer Berman, Robert Pulcini | R | 101 min | 2003|

An original mix of fiction and reality illuminates the life of comic book hero everyman Harvey Pekar.

Stream it on: Amazon iTunes link

15. The Pianist

Directed by Roman Polanski | R | 150 min | 2002|

A Polish Jewish musician struggles to survive the destruction of the Warsaw ghetto of World War II.

Stream it on: Amazon iTunes link

16. Mulholland Drive

Directed by David Lynch | R | 147 min | 2001|

After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.

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17. Yi Yi

Directed by Edward Yang | 173 min | 2000|

Each member of a middle class Taipei family seeks to reconcile past and present relationships within their daily lives.


18. Being John Malkovich

Directed by Spike Jonze | R | 112 min | 1999|

A puppeteer discovers a portal that leads literally into the head of movie star John Malkovich.

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19. Topsy-Turvy

Directed by Mike Leigh | R | 154 min | 1999|

After Gilbert and Sullivan's latest play is critically panned, the frustrated team threatens to disband until it is inspired to write the masterpiece "The Mikado".

Stream it on: Amazon

20. Out of Sight

Directed by Steven Soderbergh | R | 123 min | 1998|

A career bank robber breaks out of jail and shares a moment of mutual attraction with a US Marshall he has kidnapped.

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21. L.A. Confidential

Directed by Curtis Hanson | R | 138 min | 1997|

As corruption grows in 1950s LA, three policemen - one strait-laced, one brutal, and one sleazy - investigate a series of murders with their own brand of justice.

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22. Breaking the Waves

Directed by Lars von Trier | R | 159 min | 1996|

Oilman Jan is paralyzed in an accident. His wife, who prayed for his return, feels guilty; even more, when Jan urges her to have sex with another.

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23. Babe

Directed by Chris Noonan | G | 91 min | 1995|

Babe, a pig raised by sheepdogs, learns to herd sheep with a little help from Farmer Hoggett.

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24. Pulp Fiction

Directed by Quentin Tarantino | R | 154 min | 1994|

The lives of two mob hit men, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

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25. Schindler's List

Directed by Steven Spielberg | R | 195 min | 1993|

In German-occupied Poland during World War II, Oskar Schindler gradually becomes concerned for his Jewish workforce after witnessing their persecution by the Nazi Germans.

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26. Unforgiven

Directed by Clint Eastwood | R | 131 min | 1992|

Retired Old West gunslinger William Munny reluctantly takes on one last job, with the help of his old partner and a young man.

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27. Goodfellas

Directed by Martin Scorsese | R | 146 min | 1990|

Henry Hill and his friends work their way up through the mob hierarchy.

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28. Life Is Sweet

Directed by Mike Leigh | R | 103 min | 1990|

A waitress, her cook husband, & their twin daughters ponder their lives over a few weeks in a working-class suburb north of London.


29. Drugstore Cowboy

Directed by Gus Van Sant | R | 102 min | 1989|

A pharmacy-robbing dope fiend and his crew pop pills and evade the law.

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30. The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Directed by Philip Kaufman | R | 171 min | 1988|

In 1968, a Czech doctor with an active sex life meets a woman who wants monogamy, and then the Soviet invasion further disrupts their lives.

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31. The Dead

Directed by John Huston | PG | 83 min | 1987|

Gabriel Conroy and wife Greta attend an early January dinner with friends at the home of his spinster aunts, an evening which results in an epiphany for both of them.

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32. Blue Velvet

Directed by David Lynch | R | 120 min | 1986|

The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.

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33. Ran

Directed by Akira Kurosawa | R | 162 min | 1985|

Set in Japan in the 16th century (or so), an elderly warlord retires, handing over his empire to his three sons. However, he vastly underestimates how the new-found power will corrupt them, or cause them to turn on each other...and him...

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34. Stranger Than Paradise

Directed by Jim Jarmusch | R | 89 min | 1984|

A self-styled New York hipster is paid a surprise visit by his younger cousin from Budapest. From initial hostility and indifference a small degree of affection grows between the two. Along...

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35. Tootsie

Directed by Sydney Pollack | PG | 116 min | 1982|

Michael Dorsey, an unsuccessful actor, disguises himself as a woman in order to get a role on a trashy hospital soap.

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36. The Night of the Shooting Stars

Directed by Paolo Taviani, Vittorio Taviani | R | 105 min | 1982|

The Night of San Lorenzo, the night of the shooting stars, is the night when dreams come true in Italian folklore. In 1944, a group of Italians flee their town after hearing rumours that ...


37. Melvin and Howard

Directed by Jonathan Demme | R | 95 min | 1980|

The story of hard-luck Melvin Dummar, who claimed to have received a will naming him an heir to the fortune of Howard Hughes.


38. Atlantic City

Directed by Louis Malle | R | 104 min | 1980|

In a corrupt city, a small-time gangster and the estranged wife of a pot dealer finds themselves thrown together in an escapade of love, money, drugs, and danger.

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39. Breaking Away

Directed by Peter Yates | PG | 101 min | 1979|

A small-town boy obsessed with the Italian cycling team vies for the affections of a college girl.

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40. Get Out Your Handkerchiefs

Directed by Bertrand Blier | R | 108 min | 1978|

Solange is depressed: she's stopped smiling, she eats little, she says less. She has fainting fits. Her husband Raoul seeks to save her by enlisting Stephane, a stranger, to be her lover. ...


41. Annie Hall

Directed by Woody Allen | PG | 93 min | 1977|

Neurotic New York comedian Alvy Singer falls in love with the ditzy Annie Hall.

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42. All the President's Men

Directed by Alan J. Pakula | PG | 138 min | 1976|

"The Washington Post" reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein uncover the details of the Watergate scandal that leads to President Richard Nixon's resignation.

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43. Nashville

Directed by Robert Altman | R | 159 min | 1975|

Over the course of a few hectic days, numerous interrelated people prepare for a political convention as secrets and lies are surfaced and revealed.

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44. Day for Night

Directed by François Truffaut | PG | 115 min | 1973|

A committed film director struggles to complete his movie while coping with a myriad of crises, personal and professional, among the cast and crew.

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45. Scenes from a Marriage

Directed by N/A | PG | 283 min | 1973|

Ten years of Marianne and Johan's relationship are presented. We first meet them ten years into their marriage. He is a college professor, she a divorce lawyer. They say that they are ...


46. The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie

Directed by Luis Buñuel | PG | 102 min | 1972|

A surreal, virtually plotless series of dreams centered around six middle-class people and their consistently interrupted attempts to have a meal together.

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47. MASH

Directed by Robert Altman | R | 116 min | 1970|

The staff of a Korean War field hospital use humor and hijinks to keep their sanity in the face of the horror of war.

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48. Claire's Knee

Directed by Éric Rohmer | GP | 105 min | 1970|

On holiday, a conflicted man lusts after beautiful stepsisters despite his betrothal to a diplomat's daughter.


49. Z

Directed by Costa-Gavras | M | 127 min | 1969|

Following the murder of a prominent leftist, an investigator tries to uncover the truth while government officials attempt to cover up their roles.

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50. Shame

Directed by Ingmar Bergman | R | 103 min | 1968|

Ingmar Bergman's psychological study of how humans react in a situation of war. The film takes place on Gotland, where invasion forces arrive.

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51. Blow-Up

Directed by Michelangelo Antonioni | 111 min | 1966|

A mod London photographer finds something very suspicious in the shots he has taken of a mysterious beauty in a desolate park.

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52. Persona

Directed by Ingmar Bergman | 83 min | 1966|

A nurse is put in charge of an actress who can't talk and finds that the actress's persona is melding with hers.

Stream it on: Amazon iTunes link