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Wednesday, 8 December, 1999, 01:09 GMT
Film buffs look back to the future
The Force is with the Star Wars series


Star Wars is the best film of all time, according to viewers of BBC One's Film 99, whose top choices are dominated by science fiction.

The Film 99 top ten
1: Star Wars
2: Blade Runner
3:Casablanca
4: Alien
5: The Phantom Menace
6: The Shawshank Redemption
7: The Empire Strikes Back
8: Schindler's List
9: Saving Private Ryan
10: Pulp Fiction
Director George Lucas's 1977 blockbuster led four futuristic movies in the top five, finishing just ahead of Ridley Scott's dark sci-fi epic Bladerunner.

Both Lucas and British director Scott scored a top-five double; Lucas's Star Wars "prequel" Phantom Menace, judged by some critics to be a disappointment, romped in at number five. It beat the arguably more popular Pulp Fiction (10) and Saving Private Ryan (9).

Scott's Alien, starring Sigourney Weaver, was at number four.

And the only non-sci fi-film to make it into the top five was classic movie Casablanca, made in 1942 starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, at number three.

Although the rest of the top ten has less spaceships and aliens, Lucas's The Empire Strikes Back still crept in at number seven.

Sigourney Weaver: Grappled with Aliens
Director Steven Spielberg also did well, featuring twice in the top ten, with Holocaust drama Schindler's List at eight, and Saving Private Ryan, a bloody depiction of WWII, at nine.

The top British film in the list was Monty Python's controversial Life of Brian, at 18, followed by The Third Man, at 25.

The oldest film in the list was Gone With The Wind, from 1939, which featured at number 12, while the newest is The Blair Witch Project which was released in the UK only in October and appears at 66.

Robert De Niro features in six of the top 100 films, including Taxi Driver (19) and The Deer Hunter (76). Harrison Ford and Sir Alec Guinness star in five each.

The female stars most frequently in the list are Sigourney Weaver and Carrie Fisher with three mentions, thanks to the film series they appear in - Alien and Star Wars respectively.

Robert de Niro: Features in six top 100 films
Perhaps a surprise omission from the list was Britain's most successful movie, Notting Hill.

The Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts comedy, which became a smash hit earlier this year, was snubbed by fans who ranked even cult flicks like Clerks and Evil Dead 2 in the lower reaches of the list.

Film 99 presenter Jonathan Ross said: "Obviously I'm gutted that the Village People movie Thank God Its Friday isn't anywhere near the top 100, but that's film 99 viewers for you, too much taste and discretion."

Viewers sent in votes for their personal top five last month with 10,000 responses in the first week.

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See also:
08 Dec 99 |  Entertainment
The Film 99 top 100
23 Sep 99 |  Entertainment
Third Man tops British film chart

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