The greatest American films: Film critics vs. the Vatican

The Bicycle ThiefHow does the BBC list compare to the 1995 Vatican film list?

The Vatican list, published by the Pontifical Council for Social Communications in honor of the centenary of the motion picture, is both narrower and broader than the BBC list, with 45 unranked films drawn from all over the world listed under the three categories of “Religion,” “Values,” and “Art.”

Like the BBC list, the Vatican list includes choices both standard (“The Bicycle Thief,” “The Seventh Seal”) and dubious (Liliana Cavani’s dreadful “Francesco,” starring — yes, really — Mickey Rourke as St. Francis of Assisi and Helena Bonham Carter as St. Clare).


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