Zagat’s World’s Best Movies: Top 1,000 Of All Time

November 11, 2010

Long regarded as the go-to source for hot destinations or a nice dinner out, now you can refer to Zagat’s World’s Best Movies list for their official opinion the best films of all time. Find out which topped their list, plus pictures and video below!

Using a formula that calculates a film’s rank based on acting, storyline, and production value, the top 20 list based on a film’s ‘Overall Quality’ might surprise you. Containing only two films from the new millennium, the company immediately risks alienating their younger audience.

Topping Zagat’s world’s best movies is the predictable and worthy Godfather duo. Part 1 takes the first spot with part 2 right behind it. With Casablanca, Schindler’s List, and Lawrence of Arabia rounding out the top 5, other notables are number 7: Star Wars, 14: Shawshank Redemption, and 19: Finding Nemo. Yes, to the shock of old-time movie lovers who no doubt highly regard the first 18 classics, the lovable kids film scored one for the animated genre by breaking into the top 20!

Fore your perusal, here’s the full breakdown of Top Films By Overall Quality:

1. The Godfather (1972)
2. The Godfather Part II (1974)
3. Casablanca (1942)
4. Schindler’s List (1993)
5. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
6. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
7. Star Wars (1977)
8. The Wizard of Oz (1939)
9. Lady Eve (1941)
10. Singin’ in the Rain (1952)
11. Rear Window (1954)
12. It Happened One Night (1934)
13. Citizen Kane (1941)
14. Shawshank Redemption (1994)
15. All About Eve (1950)
16. The Pianist (2002)
17. African Queen (1951)
18. Third Man (1949)
19. Finding Nemo (2003)
20. Dr. Strangelove (1964)

But that isn’t where the multi-faceted rating company stops. Aside from their film ranking, lists were also made naming the top actors, actresses, and directors, as well as ranking the top film by genre! Quite an undertaking!


1. Cary Grant
2. Johnny Depp
3. Geroge Clooney


1. Meryl Streep
2. Sandra Bullock
3. Katharine Hepburn


1. Steven Spielberg
2. Martin Scorsese
3. Alfred Hitchcock

Zagat’s World’s Best Movies is available for $14.95 from What do you think of the surveyor’s list? You can get more detail here. What would you change about it? Let me know in the comment section after you check out these pictures and videos!

Worlds Best Movies  1 Worlds Best Movies  2 Worlds Best Movies  3 Worlds Best Movies  4 Worlds Best Movies  6 Worlds Best Movies  7

Photos: Adriana M. Barraza, Andres Otero, PNP

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68 Responses to “Zagat’s World’s Best Movies: Top 1,000 Of All Time”

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  1. 1
    Steve Ver Duft Says:

    How can you say the Godfather is the #1 movie of all time and rank Godfather #2 second and not give best director and the most versatile to Copola. Scorsese’s main play are gangster movies where Copola can do horror,Drama,comedie
    And Jeepers Creepers one and two where off the hook. You got Cary Grant right but Colooney is no Humphry Bogart or even Ramon Massy and what happened to Gary Copper and Widmark. You picked the B team to KISS ASS, but that’s the world we live in.

  2. 2
    Brooke W Durocher Says:

    I think agree with the Top Actors list, but I REALLY like Robert Redford, I believe that he deserves some credit.
    And for Top Actresses I think Audrey Hepburn should for sure be be there.
    For top directors I they should give Christopher Nolan a chance. Inception was mind blowing !

  3. 3
    King Jabba Labba Says:


    Nice list but what about;

    The Sting.

    The Great Escape.

    12 Angry Men.

    Gone with the Wind.

    Pulp Fiction.

    and others.

    As with any list……
    there’s always more to add.

    King Jabba Labba

  4. 4
    salem arnaout Says:

    I would have liked to see Marlon Brando, Robert De Niro ,Al Pacino, Dustin Hoffman,Jack Nicholson,Tom Hanks,Robert Redford, Clint Eastwood,Anthony Hopkins,Janes Stewart, just to name a few.
    Thank you for the opportunity to allow us to express our thoughts.

  5. 5
    Dave Says:

    I can’t say they got the top 20 wrong, they all look like great movies. In the top three I have to give a shout-out to Jimmy Stewart, a man not given the credit for the depth of the roles he played, from a physics professor to a killer.

    Agree with Meryl Streep, but Sandra Bullock needs more skins before she can compete with Katherine Hepburn. Ingrid Bergman needs a mention whenever you talk about great female actors.

  6. 6
    Dave Says:

    Like your list Jabba Labba. Just thought, we’re forgetting musicals and comedies.


    The Music Man
    A Funny Thing Happened on the way to the Forum


    Young Frankenstein
    The Producers
    Some Like it Hot

    The list is endless. Love great movies :)

  7. 7
    Bill Says:

    Sandra Bullock? Are you kidding? The teeth?

    She has only been in a few dramatic movies and I don’t think she deserved the award for The Blind Side.

    Could there be some nepotism here? Is her mother employed by Zagat?

  8. 8
    bgs Says:

    I don’t agree with your top 20 movies but I have to say some of them I have never seen. Some of them I saw but didn’t care for them at all. I also think Al Pacino should be one of the top actors as well as Leonardo DiCaprio. Leo has played all kinds of actors and I don’t think anyone could have out-acted him in the Howard Hughes film. Edward Norton is also a great actor. George Clooney–give me a break. He’s nice on the eyes but he’s not a top 3 actor. I think Lord of the Rings was every bit as good as Star Wars. Star Wars was great for it’s time but there have been far better movies that it since then. Some of your top 20 were good for their time but how many would you want to watch a second or third time or even watch now the first time? I think a Top 20 movie should be one you would watch over and over and would recommend to someone who has never seen it. Some of your Top 20 I would not watch again and would not recommend. The Godfather I & II were awesome. Glad you included a musical (Singin’ n the Rain) and I have watched it numerous times. Casablanca as #3??–not so much. Surprised only 4 movies in the past 20 years made this list. The movies today are far superior in quality and acting to movies in the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s–with some exceptions. Finding Nemo should not have made this list. Can’t you believe you would put this before so many other AWESOME movies.

  9. 9
    garyola Says:

    Godfather at the top? That’s bogus.

  10. 10
    Jake Says:


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