What Makes Films Great

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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Determining what films are the best is not an easy task. However, in order to make it easier, one must first determine what it is that makes a movie great. Based on these criteria, determining the five best films of all time is much easier. However, each person's list of the best films will be different, as their ideas of what makes movies great will be different.

Quality of writing and quality of acting are possibly the two most important aspects of a film. If one is stronger that the other, the stronger can carry the weaker, and the movie can still be good. However, if both are weak, the film has no chance of being a good movie.

In addition to the writing and the acting, the plotline must also be good. If the movie is uneven, or if it is too predictable, it can't be great. The plot must flow.

It must be consistent all the way through. It should take you by surprise at least a few times. Otherwise it is too boring to watch.

Also, the characters must be developed well throughout the movie. The audience must learn more about them as the movie goes on, and they must be able to have some reaction to them. They must care about them, or hate them, or have whatever feelings toward them that they are supposed to.

My personal list of the top five movies of all time consists of: American Beauty, The Breakfast Club, Goodfellas, Fight Club, and Clerks. These films are all very different, however they all meet the criteria listed above to make them great movies.

American Beauty is one of the most well written movies ever. The script is interesting, beautiful, and thought provoking. The casting was very appropriate. All of the actors...