best movies of all time
'Home Alone' dominated 1990 | Evan Lockhart/Jason Hoffman/Thrillist
'Home Alone' dominated 1990 | Evan Lockhart/Jason Hoffman/Thrillist
Entertainment

The Biggest Movie From the Year You Were Born

Your birthday gifts you a Zodiac sign, a generation, a gemstone, a Chinese animal avatar, a spiritual celebrity twin born the same day, or just your own personal holiday to tide you over until the next national day off. But why stop there? Your entire birth year deserves a symbolic movie, too, the BIGGEST film from a 12-month window that surely says something about where you've come from, and who you've become.

Which movie you'll cling to depends on your metrics. "Biggest" could mean the blockbuster that topped the box office during the year you were born. Or maybe "biggest" has cultural value -- prestige doesn't get much bigger than winning Best Picture at the Academy Awards. Or maybe you're a little more thoughtful and want the actual best movie from the calendar year of your birth. We've got you covered in all three departments. Whether you're 12 or 102 -- seriously, we're not ageist -- everyone deserves a movie to stream on a whim and call their own. Here are yours (and your friends', and your parents', and your grandparents', and... ).

Spider-Man 3
Spider-Man 3 | Sony Pictures

If you were born in 2007...

The BIGGEST movie wasSpider-Man 3, which grossed $336.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasNo Country for Old Men, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Joel and Ethan Coen), Best Supporting Actor (Bardem) and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasNo Country for Old Men. Joel and Ethan Coen filtered Cormac McCarthy through their caustic wit to metastasize a strain of moral dread that stems from Javier Bardem's iconic Anton Chigurh.

If you were born in 2006...

The BIGGEST movie wasPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, which grossed $423.3 in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Departed, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Martin Scorsese), Best Film Editing, and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasChildren of Men. Alfonso Cuarón's dystopian science-fiction film, tracking one man's mission to protect the first pregnant woman in nearly 18 years, treats geopolitical strife like an obstacle course, academic soliloquy and war photography paired together to weave through chaos.

If you were born in 2005...

The BIGGEST movie wasStar Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith, which grossed 380.3 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasCrash, which also won Oscars for Best Original Screenplay and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie wasCaché. As if in step with the emergence of Facebook and a new era of transparency, this psychological thriller, a winner in every corner of the world except the American box office, finds a Parisian man forced to confront his malicious past when an anonymous spy begins recording his life and leaving video tapes at his doorstep.

If you were born in 2004...

The BIGGEST movie wasShrek 2, which grossed $441.2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasMillion Dollar Baby, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Clint Eastwood), Best Actress (Hilary Swank), and Best Supporting Actor (Morgan Freeman).
But the best movie wasEternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Charlie Kaufman’s imagination went full throttle in this funny, sweet, heart-pummeling romance between two lovers who use technology to forget about each other.

The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King | Warner Bros. Pictures

If you were born in 2003...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, which grossed $377 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, which also won Oscars for Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, Best Original Song, Best Visual Effects, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Film Editing
But the best movie wasLord of the Rings: The Return of the King. At the nexus of classic literature and giant-budget blockbusting, the conclusion of the sprawling Middle-earth trilogy shepherded to life by Peter Jackson (and the entire country of New Zealand) broke records of every kind and elegantly wrapped up an unprecedented trilogy.

If you were born in 2002...

The BIGGEST movie wasSpider-Man, which grossed $403.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasChicago, which also won Oscars for Best Supporting Actress (Catherine Zeta-Jones), Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, and Best Sound Mixing.
But the best movie wasSpirited Away. Hayao Miyazaki’s barrage of sparkling souls and living myth sees the young Chihiro, who goes to work in a magical bathhouse in the spirit world after her parents turn into pigs, learning about her own ingenuity, strength, and capacity for cleaning filthy ethereal entities.

If you were born in 2001...

The BIGGEST movie wasHarry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, which grossed $317.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasA Beautiful Mind, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Ron Howard), Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Supporting Actress.
But the best movie wasAmélie. An injection of pure joy and boundless creativity delivered by Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Audrey Tautou, who plays the eccentric mademoiselle of Montmartre, hunting down life’s simple pleasures and occasionally thinking about falling in love.

In the Mood for Love
In the Mood for Love | The Criterion Collection

If you were born in 2000...

The BIGGEST movie wasHow the Grinch Stole Christmas, which grossed $260 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasGladiator, which also won Oscars for Best Actor (Russell Crowe), Best Visual Effects, Best Costume Design, Best Sound Mixing
But the best movie wasIn The Mood for Love. Haunting and lush, Maggie Cheung and Tony Leung play neighbors who become close friends when each suspect their spouses of having an affair in Wong Kar-wai’s monument to the human connection.

If you were born in 1999...

The BIGGEST movie wasStar Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace, which grossed $431 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAmerican Beauty, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Sam Mendes), Best Actor (Kevin Spacey), Best Original Screenplay, and Best Cinematography
But the best movie wasBeau Travail. A dazzling contemplation about sexuality, fellowship, insecurity, and betrayal, Claire Denis’ quality time with members of the French Foreign Legion is technically inventive and ready to dance.

If you were born in 1998...

The BIGGEST movie wasSaving Private Ryan, which grossed $216.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasShakespeare in Love, which also won Oscars for Best Actress (Gwyneth Paltrow), Best Supporting Actress (Judi Dench), Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Original Music or Comedy Score, Best Original Screenplay
But the best movie wasSaving Private Ryan. Probably the best modern war film, and definitely the most graphic of its time, Spielberg’s boots on the ground mission to bring back the only surviving son both celebrated and questioned the idea of sacrifice with the bombast of a mortar blast and the intimacy of a sharp knife.

Titanic
Titanic | Paramount Pictures

If you were born in 1997...

The BIGGEST movie wasTitanic, which grossed $600.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasTitanic, which also won Oscars for Best Director (James Cameron), Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Visual Effects, Best Film Editing, Best Costume Design, Best Sound, Best Sound Effects Editing, Best Original Dramatic Score, Best Original Song ("My Heart Will Go On").
But the best movie was L.A. Confidential. A lurid tale of cynicism and optimism crashing into one another in the swingin’ '50s of Hollywood, director Curtis Hanson’s film attacked the town’s corrupt underbelly with gusto and introduced us to Guy Pearce and Russell Crowe.

If you were born in 1996...

The BIGGEST movie wasIndependence Day, which grossed $306.1 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe English Patient, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Anthony Minghella), Best Supporting Actress (Juliette Binoche), Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Original Score.
But the best movie wasFargo. The homespun murder story and black comic wonder from the Coen Brothers, quirky as it is violent, carved out special places in our hearts for the resourceful Marge Gunderson and a very useful wood chipper.

If you were born in 1995...

The BIGGEST movie wasToy Story, which grossed $191.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasBraveheart, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Mel Gibson), Best Cinematography, Best Makeup, and Best Sound Editing.
But the best movie wasThe Usual Suspects. The ideal neo-noir, brimming with backstabbing intensity and one of the greatest twist endings of all time.

Forrest Gump
Forrest Gump | Paramount Pictures

If you were born in 1994...

The BIGGEST movie wasForrest Gump, which grossed $329.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasForrest Gump, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Robert Zemeckis), Best Actor (Tom Hanks), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Visual Effects, and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie wasPulp Fiction. The Sophie’s Choice of modern cinephiles, picking between Quentin Tarantino’s ballsy flash of hip obscenity and The Shawshank Redemption means that everyone’s a winner, but a slight edge goes to the ordered chaos that launched the voice behind Reservoir Dogs into the stratosphere.

If you were born in 1993...

The BIGGEST movie wasJurassic Park, which grossed $357 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasSchindler's List, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Steven Spielberg), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction, and Best Original Score.
But the best movie wasJurassic Park. It’s insane that Spielberg had this and Schindler’s List in the same year, and while the latter is a harrowing, culturally vital artifact, the former is a masterpiece of genre spectacle that finds a way to simultaneously thrill and speak to the human condition.

If you were born in 1992...

The BIGGEST movie wasAladdin, which grossed $217.3 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasUnforgiven, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Clint Eastwood), Best Supporting Actor (Gene Hackman) and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie wasA League of Their Own. With an obscene amount of hilarious quotable lines (no, there’s still no crying in baseball), Penny Marshall’s ode to a WWII baseball team is the rare comedy that audiences needed Kleenex for.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Terminator 2: Judgment Day | Paramount Pictures

If you were born in 1991...

The BIGGEST movie wasTerminator 2: Judgment Day, which grossed $204.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Silence of the Lambs, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Jonathan Demme), Best Actor (Anthony Hopkins), Best Actress (Jodie Foster), and Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasBoyz n the Hood. Once upon a time in South Central LA, John Singleton barreled onto the scene with a story of gangland hopes and vengeance that brought a fresh energy to the Oscars, Cannes, and Cuba Gooding Jr’s career.

If you were born in 1990...

The BIGGEST movie wasHome Alone, which grossed $285.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasDances with Wolves, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Kevin Costner), Best Actor (Kevin Costner), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, Best Film Editing, Best Cinematography, and Best Sound.
But the best movie wasGoodfellas. An unrivaled parable of ambition and mafioso style, Martin Scorsese utilized New Wave techniques to craft a tragic, percussive sucker punch.

If you were born in 1989...

The BIGGEST movie wasBatman, which grossed $251.2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasDriving Miss Daisy, which also won Oscars for Best Actress (Jessica Tandy), Best Makeup, and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasDo the Right Thing. In Spike Lee's opus, the hottest day of the summer cranks a diverse set of Brooklyn personalities to a boiling point, forcing issues of race, class, and love to bubble to the surface. The movie speaks volumes without ever preaching; actions -- be it police interference or a trash can through a window pane -- speak louder than words.

Rain Man
Rain Man | MGM

If you were born in 1988...

The BIGGEST movie wasRain Man, which grossed $172.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasRain Man, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Barry Levinson), Best Actor (Dustin Hoffman), and Best Original Screenplay.
But the best movie was The Thin Blue Line. With unfettered access and an eye for the thriller genre, Errol Morris' documentary transcends journalism to become a damning look at the judicial system, and an emotional plea to to save 28-year-old Randall Adams from death row for a crime he didn't commit.

If you were born in 1987...

The BIGGEST movie wasThree Men and a Baby, which grossed $167.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Last Emperor, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Bernardo Bertolucci), Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Original Score, Best Sound, and Best Adapted Screenplay
But the best movie wasBroadcast News. We all know the workplace, but few films capture its inner-workings like James L. Brooks' newsroom comedy, which finds a love triangle in a consumed producer, a disgruntled reporter, and a charismatic-yet-hollow anchorman (but not really, because life's a bit more complicated than love triangles).

If you were born in 1986...

The BIGGEST movie wasTop Gun, which grossed $176.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasPlatoon, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Oliver Stone), Best Film Editing, and Best Sound.
But the best movie wasBlue Velvet. Look, Top Gun kicks ass, but David Lynch's twitchy riff on film noir is the link between our reality and our dreams, each frame zooming in on the drips of suburbia melting into hell. Dennis Hopper deep-breathing into a gas mask doesn't have to make sense, it just does.

After Hours
After Hours | Warner Bros. Pictures

If you were born in 1985...

The BIGGEST movie wasBack to the Future, which grossed $210.6 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasOut of Africa, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Sydney Pollack), Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, and Best Sound.
But the best movie wasAfter Hours. For all the sweeping epics and nostalgia-crystallizing blockbusters of 1985, it's Martin Scorsese's sprint through New York's night owl scene that grabs every who, what, where, when, and why of life and spin-paints them into a living, breathing movie. The Matrix for late-night coffee drinkers.

If you were born in 1984...

The BIGGEST movie wasBeverly Hills Cop, which grossed $234.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAmadeus, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Miloš Forman), Best Actor (F. Murray Abraham), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, and Best Sound Mixing.
But the best movie wasA Nightmare on Elm Street. Wes Craven introduced the enduring Freddy Krueger in this horror all-timer, where the special effects -- oh, that blood geysering from Johnny Depp's bed! -- match the disturbing logic of a creeper who can stalk into your slumbering mind.

If you were born in 1983...

The BIGGEST movie wasReturn of the Jedi, which grossed $252.6 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasTerms of Endearment, which also won Oscars for Best Director (James L. Brooks), Best Actress (Shirley MacLaine), Best Supporting Actor (Jack Nicholson) and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasTerms of Endearment. No offense, Luke, but The Force is strong with this comedic drama about romance, love, and frustrations, and how the end of the road can bring two people -- in this case, the extraordinary screen-mother/daughter of Shirley MacLaine and Debra Winger -- together. There's a reason this one still made $108 million against a Star Wars movie.

E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial
E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial | Universal Pictures

If you were born in 1982...

The BIGGEST movie wasE.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, which grossed $359.2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasGandhi, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Richard Attenborough), Best Actor (Ben Kingsley), Best Writing, Original Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Best Costume Design, and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie wasFanny and Alexander. Though cut down from a 312-minute, four-part TV series, Ingmar Bergman's theatrical version, dark and heightened through the senses of its young protagonists, remains the pinnacle of family drama.

If you were born in 1981...

The BIGGEST movie wasRaiders of the Lost Ark, which grossed $212.2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasChariots of Fire, which also won Oscars for Best Writing, Original Screenplay, Best Costume Design, and Best Original Score.
But the best movie wasThe Evil Dead. Spielberg's serial adventure throwback is the greatest action movie of all time, no doubt, but the raw carnage (and talent) on display in Sam Raimi's was a rough landmark for indie cinema.

If you were born in 1980...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Empire Strikes Back, which grossed $209.4 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasOrdinary People, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Robert Redford), Best Supporting Actor (Timothy Hutton), and Best Adapted Screenplay
But the best movie wasAirplane!. There is not an inch of this disaster movie spoof left un-wisecracked. Relentless with wordplay, sight gags, and throwaway lines ("Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue"), Airplane! is as pristine as any Renaissance painting, just with inflatable co-pilots instead of Jesus.

Being There
Being There | United Artists

If you were born in 1979...

The BIGGEST movie wasMoonraker, which grossed $70.3 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasKramer vs. Kramer, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Robert Benton), Best Actor (Dustin Hoffman), Best Supporting Actress (Meryl Streep), and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasBeing There. Peter Sellers' subdued performance as the assuaged, simple gardener Chance anchors Hal Ashby's American satire about our political bubbles, celebrity obsessions, and how easily we distract ourselves from real life. Ashby's gracious enough to let us chuckle and think.

If you were born in 1978...

The BIGGEST movie wasGrease, which grossed $181.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Deer Hunter, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Michael Cimino), Best Supporting Actor (Christopher Walken), Best Film Editing, and Best Sound.
But the best movie wasDays of Heaven. Light on story, stringent with painterly images, and flowing with feelings, Terrence Malick's move towards a meditative form of movie turns a farmland con, devised by two lovers (Richard Gere and Brooke Adams), into true Americana.

If you were born in 1977...

The BIGGEST movie wasStar Wars, which grossed $461 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAnnie Hall, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Woody Allen), Best Actress (Diane Keaton), and Best Original Screenplay
But the best movie wasClose Encounters of the ThirdKind. Steven Spielberg's sci-fi film failed to spawn a billion-dollar franchise, but the bittersweet story of a father driven away from his home by the call of extraterrestrials, combined with magnificent visual effects, keeps it resonating through time.

Rocky
Rocky | United Artists

If you were born in 1976...

The BIGGEST movie wasRocky, which grossed $117.2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasRocky, which also won Oscars for Best Director (John G. Avildsen) and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie wasNetwork. Renowned writer Paddy Chayefsky and director Sidney Lumet unloaded on the media world and all American onlookers in this scathing, hysterical, "MAD AS HELL" takedown of ratings-chasing plutocracy. Not as uplifting as Rocky, but pissed on Rocky's behalf.

If you were born in 1975...

The BIGGEST movie wasJaws, which grossed $260 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasOne Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Miloš Forman), Best Actor (Jack Nicholson), Best Actress (Louise Fletcher), and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasNashville. Robert Altman detected a microcosm in Tennessee's country music scene and pieced together a vibrant, tragically funny mosaic that feels like it was shot on the fly, even as the director stages grand ol' musical sequences and life-changing turns of events.   

If you were born in 1974...

The BIGGEST movie wasBlazing Saddles, which grossed $119.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Godfather Part II, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Francis Ford Coppola), Best Supporting Actor (Robert De Niro), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Art Direction, and Best Original Dramatic Score.
But the best movie wasThe Conversation. Between the sprawling Godfather saga and his tumultuous Apocalypse Now, Francis Ford Coppola outdid himself with this prescient drama about a surveillance specialist Harry Caul (Gene Hackman) who succumbs to the paranoia of being scene and heard.  

If you were born in 1973...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Exorcist, which grossed $204.6 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Sting, which also won Oscars for Best Director (George Roy Hill), Best Writing, Original Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Music, Scoring Original Song Score.
But the best movie wasPlaytime. In this hilarious, sound-effect-filled comedy, director and actor Jacques Tati's cartoonish character Monsieur Hulot navigates the eye-popping mundanity of a day in the worker bee life and reminds us that words are rarely needed to express and react to the beats of life.

The Godfather
The Godfather | Paramount Pictures

If you were born in 1972...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Godfather, which grossed $135 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Godfather, which also won Oscars for Best Actor (Marlon Brando) and Best Adapted Screenplay. (The Academy Nino Rota's memorable musical theme for the film was stripped of a nomination, and a likely win, because voters deemed it too close to his work on the 1958 comedy Fortunella!)
But the best movie wasPink Flamingos. The only fighter who could challenge The Godfather in 1972 was John Waters, a mad scientist who, along with drag queen Divine and an ensemble of transgressive bullet-biters, marched to the doors of moviedom with this wicked funny, countercultural crime movie that you can never unsee (and who'd want to?).

If you were born in 1971...

The BIGGEST movie wasDiamonds Are Forever, which grossed $43.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe French Connection, which also won Oscars for Best Director (William Friedkin), Best Actor (Gene Hackman), Best Film Editing, and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasThe French Connection. Come for "Popeye" Doyle's car chase through the streets of Bensonhurst, one of the most reckless, heart-pounding action sequences ever committed to film, stay for Popeye himself, an organic sprout protruding from New York City's side, rough, curt, and fragmented, a hero of sorts, but an actual human, navigating a suspenseful, larger-than-life mystery.

If you were born in 1970...

The BIGGEST movie wasLove Story, which grossed $106.4 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasPatton, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Franklin J. Schaffner), Best Original Screenplay, Best Film Editing, Best Sound, and Best Art Direction.
But the best movie wasFive Easy Pieces. On a California oil field, white collar meets blue collar as an ex-pianist (Jack Nicholson) floats through life, damaging himself and others along the way.  

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid | 20th Century Fox

If you were born in 1969...

The BIGGEST movie wasButch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, which grossed $96.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasMidnight Cowboy, which also won Oscars for Best Director (John Schlesinger) and Best Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasThe Wild Bunch. The Western has taken every form in the last 100 years of movies, but Sam Peckinpah stripped down the genre and bloodied it up with excessive force in this unparalleled ride.  

If you were born in 1968...

The BIGGEST movie was2001: A Space Odyssey, which grossed $57 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasOliver!, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Carol Reed), Best Art Direction, Best Sound, and Best Musical Adaptation Score.
But the best movie was2001: A Space Odyssey. Stanley Kubrick went to well-documented lengths to accurately reflect our technological future in his fable of man and machine intelligence. But in the end, the movie's graphic touches, from floating pens to black hole psychedelia, act as a floodgate-opening monolith for our imaginations.

Jungle Book
Jungle Book | Walt Disney Pictures

If you were born in 1967...

The BIGGEST movie wasJungle Book, which grossed $141.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasIn the Heat of the Night, which also won Oscars for Best Picture (Walter Mirisch), Best Actor (Rod Steiger), Best Film Editing, Best Sound, Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay.
But the best movie wasBonnie & Clyde. Inspired by the don't-give-a-fuh attitude towards moviemaking conventions happening in France, Arthur Penn kicked off the "American New Wave" with this gangster tale, which prevails in today's less prudish times thanks to Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway's killer performances.

If you were born in 1966...

The BIGGEST movie was The Bible: In the Beginning... which grossed $34 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasA Man for All Seasons, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Fred Zinnemann), Best Actor (Paul Scofield), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Color, and Best Costume Design, Color.
But the best movie wasWho's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. Often slighted for being a filmed version of a play (by Edward Albee), Mike Nichols's debut is an alchemized movie-acting cagematch, with Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, George Segal, and Sandy Dennis hitting every note in sync with the director's moves.

If you were born in 1965...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Sound of Music, which grossed $163.2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Sound of Music, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Robert Wise), Best Music, Scoring of Music-Adaptation, Best Sound Mixing, and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie wasThe Train. John Frankenheimer is an underrated master, and this thriller, about a French Resistance leader (Burt Lancaster) hoping to derail the plans of an art-stealing German Colonel during World War II, is one his most underrated movies, at least with action buffs. Powered by the ticking clock, pressurized by the threat against culture, and shot with a angular eye in glorious black and white, The Train straddles two eras of the 20th century and never falters. 

My Fair Lady
My Fair Lady | Warner Bros. Pictures

If you were born in 1964...

The BIGGEST movie wasMy Fair Lady, which grossed $72 million million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasMy Fair Lady, which also won Oscars for Best Director (George Cukor), Best Actor (Rex Harrison), Best Cinematography, Best Sound, Best Adaptation Score, Best Art Direction, and Best Costume Design.
But the best movie wasThe Umbrellas of Cherbourg. Before there was La La Land there was this kaleidoscopic and colorful musical, which overflows with charm as the cast delicately sings through their dialogue like tip-toping musical. This may be heaven.

If you were born in 1963...

The BIGGEST movie wasCleopatra, which grossed $57 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasTom Jones, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Tony Richardson), Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Original Score.
But the best movie was8 ½. The Italian black-and-white movie your arty college friends couldn't shut up about is actually a divine celebration (and cautious mourning) of the creative life. As Federico Fellini's proxy, Guido Anselmi, descends into a circus dance with his friends and family, you'll understand the hype.

If you were born in 1962...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Longest Day, which grossed $39 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasLawrence of Arabia, which also won Oscars for Best Director (David Lean), Best Cinematography, Best Art Direction, Best Film Editing, Best Sound, and Best Original Score.
But the best movie wasLawrence of Arabia. Movies don't get bigger -- and more worthy of an old fashioned, intermission breather -- than David Lean's two-part, shot-on-Super-70mm-film, World War I epic about British military officer T. E. Lawrence's keystone role in the Arab Revolt. Peter O'Toole's Shakespearean presence imbues even an extra-filled train attack with personal, beady-eyed fire.

If you were born in 1961...

The BIGGEST movie wasWest Side Story, which grossed $43.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasWest Side Story, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins), Best Supporting Actor (George Chakiris), Best Supporting Actress (Rita Moreno), Best Art Direction, Color, Best Cinematography, Color, Best Costume Design, Color, Best Film Editing, Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture, and Best Sound.
But the best movie wasWest Side Story. Leonard Bernstein's jagged, colorful spin on Romeo & Juliet comes to jagged, colorful life through the most dynamic staging in movie musical history. Everyone got it right this year.

Spartacus
Spartacus | Universal Pictures

If you were born in 1960...

The BIGGEST movie wasSpartacus, which grossed $14 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Apartment, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Billy Wilder), Best Writing, Best Film Editing, and Best Art Direction, Black and White
But the best movie wasPsycho. In another year with too many iconic movies to count on one hand, Hitchcock earns top billing with an unforgettable dive into horror (he’d released the mainstream romance thriller North by Northwest just a year before!), which completely changed the genre and his reputation with the speed of a knife slashing through a shower curtain.

If you were born in 1959...

The BIGGEST movie wasBen-Hur, which grossed $36.9 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner was also Ben-Hur, which also won Oscars for Best Director (William Wyler), Best Actor (Charlton Heston), Best Supporting Actor (Hugh Griffith), Best Art Direction, Color, Best Cinematography, Color, Best Costume Design, Color, Best Special Effects, Best Film Editing, Best Music - Scoring, and Best Sound Recording
But the best movie wasThe 400 Blows (Les Quatre Cents Coups). François Truffaut kicked off his career and French New Wave while hunting down empathy for Antoine (Jean-Pierre Leaud), a troubled young student, as he rejects the system put before him, resulting in the favorite film of many of our favorite filmmakers.

If you were born in 1958...

The BIGGEST movie wasSouth Pacific, which grossed 36.8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasGigi, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Vincente Minnelli), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Best Cinematography, Color, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing, Best Musical Score, and Best Original Song ("Gigi")
But the best movie wasVertigo. Alfred Hitchcock came close to landing on this list with Rear Window in 1954, but there can be no denying the raw cinematic power of Jimmy Stewart sweating his way through San Francisco, a preternatural fear of heights, and a mourning-catalyzed obsession with Kim Novak.

The Bridge on the River Kwai
The Bridge on the River Kwai | Columbia Pictures

If you were born in 1957...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Bridge on the River Kwai, which grossed $18 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Bridge on the River Kwai, which also won Oscars for Best Director (David Lean), Best Actor (Alec Guinness), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, Best Cinematography, and Best Film Editing.
But the best movie was seriously Bridge on the River Kwai. Bergman’s The Seventh Seal should earn your arthouse love, but The Bridge on the River Kwai is an immense, all-audiences feat that could have only been achieved by David Lean’s gusto for the wonderfully torturous descents into madness that accompany tasks as arduous as building a massive bridge for the nation you’re fighting a war against.

If you were born in 1956...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Ten Commandments, which grossed $43 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAround the World in 80 Days, which also won Oscars for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Dramatic or Comedy Score, Best Cinematography, Color, and Best Film Editing
But the best movie wasThe Searchers. Almost assuredly the best Western ever filmed, the combination of John Ford’s directorial eye with John Wayne’s status as living symbol of the genre elevates this already-monumental story about a young homesteader girl’s abduction and the (literal and existential) pursuit of her captors.

If you were born in 1955...

The BIGGEST movie wasCinerama Holiday, a touring, large-screen exhibition which grossed $10 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasMarty, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Delbert Mann), Best Actor (Ernest Borgnine), Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay (Paddy Chayefsky)
But the best movie wasSong of the Little Road (Pathar Panchali). In another strong year for cinema, Satyajit Ray’s lamentation of rural life in 1920s India earns special consideration for its bone-deep humanity and calm appraisal of dreams beyond a dilapidated village.

If you were born in 1954...

The BIGGEST movie wasWhite Christmas, which grossed $30 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasOn the Waterfront, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Elia Kazan), Best Actor (Marlon Brando), Best Supporting Actress (Eva Marie Saint), Best Screenplay, Best Art Direction, Black-and-White, Best Cinematography, Black-and-White, and Best Film Editing
But the best movie wasSeven Samurai (Shichinin no Samurai). Akira Kurosawa’s pop masterpiece injects a grandiose sense of duty, honor, and civility into a bloody dance of clashing swords and pyrrhic victory while schooling all future action directors on how it’s done.

Tokyo Story
Tokyo Story | The Criterion Collection

If you were born in 1953...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Robe , which grossed $17.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasFrom Here to Eternity, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Fred Zinnemann), Best Supporting Actress (Donna Reed), Best Writing, Screenplay, Best Supporting Actor (Frank Sinatra), Best Cinematography, Black-and-White, Best Film Editing,  Best Sound
But the best movie wasTokyo Story. A delicate, heart-crushing view into the lives of two grandparents reaching out to their narcissistic children for support and finding none -- marked by director Ozu Yasujiro’s pristine attention to detail and framing.

If you were born in 1952...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Greatest Show on Earth, which grossed $14 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner was also The Greatest Show on Earth, which also won the Oscar for Best Story
But the best movie wasSingin’ in the Rain. The Gene Kelly and Debbie Reynolds-starring musical features an unreal amount of iconic, and downright transcendent, dance numbers while celebrating new love in the time of Hollywood’s transition from silent films to talkies.

If you were born in 1951...

The BIGGEST movie wasQuo Vadis, which grossed 11.9 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAn American in Paris, which also won Oscars for Best Art – Set Decoration, Color, Best Cinematography, Color, Best Costume Design, Color, Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture, and Best Writing, Story and Screenplay.
But the best movie wasCry, The Beloved Country. Acting pioneer Canada Lee passes the torch to Sidney Poitier in this expertly crafted film about the heavy human cost of Apartheid.

In the first half of the 20th century, box office reports were collected on a per-theater basis, making exact numbers difficult to track down. The following are estimates based on Variety and Box Office Digest reports from the time. Money earned from revivals or re-issues, which bolstered many of the box office smashes we all know (sorry, King Kong) are not factored into these totals.

If you were born in 1950...

The BIGGEST movie wasKing Solomon's Mines, which grossed $11.1 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAll About Eve, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Joseph L. Mankiewicz), Best Supporting Actor (George Sanders), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Costume Design, Black-and-White, and Best Sound Mixing.
But the best movie wasRashomon. Stunning in form and execution, Akira Kurosawa’s thought-provoking classic offers four points of view on one crime, bathing the audience in ambiguity and, hopefully, introspection.

If you were born in 1949...

The BIGGEST movie wasSamson and Delilah, which grossed $11.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasAll the King's Men, which also won Oscars for Best Actor (Broderick Crawford) and Best Supporting Actress (Mercedes McCambridge).
But the best movie wasThe Third Man. American author Holly Martins (Joseph Cottons) visits Vienna to get a job from his friend Harry Lime, only to find out he’s been killed just hours before Martins’ arrival, prompting an amateur investigation (and noir postcard to Europe) that’s one for the ages.

The Red Shoes
The Red Shoes | The Criterion Collection

If you were born in 1948...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Red Shoes, which grossed $5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner was Hamlet, which also won Oscars for Best Actor (Laurence Olivier), Best Art Direction-Set Decoration, Black-and-White, and Best Costume Design, Black-and-White
But the best movie wasBicycle Thieves (Ladri di biciclette). Vittorio De Sica’s beautiful view on poverty’s force is a somber poem about desperate family that pawns cherished belongings to buy a bike so its patriarch can work, only so he can spend his working day hunting through Rome for it after it’s stolen.

If you were born in 1947...

The BIGGEST movie wasForever Amber, which grossed $7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasGentleman's Agreement, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Elia Kazan) and Best Supporting Actress (Celeste Holm)
But the best movie wasGentleman’s Agreement -- the Oscars got it right. In the wake of bursting, post-WWII patriotism and Congressional condemnation of The Hollywood Ten, this Gregory Peck film where a reporter pretends to be Jewish to understand discrimination told a vital story about the soft racism of not speaking or acting out against hate.

If you were born in 1946...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Best Years of Our Lives, which grossed over $10 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Best Years of Our Lives, which also won Oscars for Best Actor (Frederic March), Best Director (William Wyler), Best Supporting Actor (Harold Russell), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Dramatic or Comedy Score, and Best Film Editing
But the best movie wasThe Postman Always Rings Twice. In this greasy film noir, a diner waitress (Lana Turner) and a hobo (John Garfield) plot the murder of the waitress' husband and soon discover that fate always catches up with you.

The Lost Weekend
The Lost Weekend | Paramount Pictures

If you were born in 1945...

The BIGGEST movie was The Bells of St. Mary's, which grossed 8.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Lost Weekend, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Billy Wilder), Best Actor (Ray Milland), Best Screenplay.
But the best movie was still The Lost Weekend. An angry, despairing look at the life of an alcoholic writer, courtesy of emotional-manipulation maestro Bill Wilder, who led this incredible picture to not only the Oscar, but a Grand Prix win across the pond at Cannes.

If you were born in 1944...

The BIGGEST movie wasGoing My Way, which grossed $8 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasGoing My Way, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Leo McCarey), Best Actor (Bing Crosby), Best Supporting Actor (Barry Fitzgerald), Best Writing, Screenplay, Best Original Motion Picture Story, Best Music, Song ("Swinging on a Star").
But the best movie wasLaura. One of the best mysteries ever made, Otto Preminger's twisty gem follows a salty detective drawn into the confusing love life of a murdered advertising executive with whom everyone seems to become obsessed.

If you were born in 1943...

The BIGGEST movie wasFor Whom the Bell Tolls, which grossed $11 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasCasablanca, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Michael Curtiz), Best Actor (Humphrey Bogart), and Best Writing, Screenplay.
But the best movie wasCasablanca. Part noir, part war melodrama, the Bogey-starring jaunt through Vichy-controlled Morocco had as much class as it did tension.

If you were born in 1942...

The BIGGEST movie wasMrs. Miniver which grossed $5.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasMrs. Miniver, which also won Oscars for Best Director (William Wyler), Best Actress (Greer Garson), Best Supporting Actress (Teresa Wright), Best Writing, Screenplay, and Best Cinematography, Black-and-White.
But the best movie wasYankee Doodle Dandy: An electric combination of sight, sound, and spectacle, James Cagney leaves it all out on the stage in this Broadway-set biopic of George M. Cohan.

Sergeant York
Sergeant York | Warner Bros. Pictures

If you were born in 1941...

The BIGGEST movie wasSergeant York, which grossed $4 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasHow Green Was My Valley, which also won Oscars for Best Director (John Ford), Best Supporting Actor (Donald Crisp), Best Cinematography, Black-and-White, and Best Art Direction, Black-and-White.
But the best movie wasCitizen Kane. Suck it, haters. The only sin Orson Welles’ roman à clef of disgusting wealth and ambition ever committed was being recognized for how ingenious and ahead of its time it truly was.

If you were born in 1940...

The BIGGEST movie wasRebecca, which grossed $6 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasRebecca, which also won Oscars for Best Cinematography, Black-and-White.
But the best movie wasFantasia. A glorious achievement of animation, music, and dance choreography that proved, alongside fellow 1940 release Pinocchio, that cartoons weren’t simply kid stuff.

If you were born in 1939...

The BIGGEST movie wasGone with the Wind, which... grossed so much money out the gate, performing 388% better than any movie before it, that box office reporters couldn't land on a single total -- the movie played in theaters through 1941, totaling around $32 million becoming a re-release titan.
The Best Picture winner wasGone with the Wind, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Victor Fleming), Best Actress (Vivian Leigh), Best Supporting Actress (Hattie McDaniel), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Color, Best Film Editing, Best Art Direction
But the best movie wasThe Wizard of Oz. This being widely recognized as the best single year of filmmaking of all time essentially makes this (at least) a 10-way tie, but Victor Fleming’s colorful odyssey of a Kansas girl and her dog in a magical world of weirdos has endured for scores of reasons.

If you were born in 1938...

The BIGGEST movie wasAlexander's Ragtime Band, which grossed $3 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasYou Can't Take It with You, which also won an Oscar for Best Director (Frank Capra)
But the best movie wasYou Can’t Take It With You. Congrats, Academy, for being on the right side of history again. This contained family story about young love (between Jimmy Stewart and Jean Arthur) defeating monopolistic greed packs a surprising punch after leaning lighthearted for much of its runtime.

The Life of Emile Zola
The Life of Emile Zola | Warner Bros. Pictures

If you were born in 1937...

The BIGGEST movie wasSnow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which grossed $8 million in the United States (by the end of the year -- Snow White would also play for years and make boatloads).
The Best Picture winner wasThe Life of Emile Zola, which also won Oscars for Supporting Actor (Joseph Schildkraut) and Best Writing, Screenplay.
But the best movie wasGrand Illusion (La Grande Illusion). Jean Renoir’s POW-camp-set dramedy found its comedy in clashes of class and its drama in a steady stream of tragic irony, laughing darkly at the mutability of borders and the "grand illusion" of war’s unnecessary existence.

If you were born in 1936...

The BIGGEST movie wasSan Francisco, which grossed $2.7 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Great Ziegfeld, which also won Oscars for Best Actress (Luise Rainer) and Best Dance Direction.
But the best movie wasModern Times. Charlie Chaplin rages against the machine, tries on a bunch of different jobs, and falls in love with a café dancer in this imaginative demonstration of slapstick mastery.

If you were born in 1935...

The BIGGEST movie wasMutiny on the Bounty, which grossed $2 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasMutiny on the Bounty, which didn't win any other Oscars!
But the best movie wasCaptain Blood. The movie that defined swashbuckling (do we even know the definition of it?) for the ages, this sea adventure showcased Errol Flynn’s acrobatics and Olivia de Havilland’s charisma.

If you were born in 1934...

The BIGGEST movie wasViva Villa!, which grossed $1.1 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasIt Happened One Night, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Frank Capra), Best Actor (Clark Gable), Best Actress (Claudette Colbert), Best Writing, Adaptation.
But the best movie wasIt Happened One Night. The first movie to win all five major Oscars deserved them. The flirtatiously hostile Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert immortalized the romantic comedy that all other romantic comedies have been trying to live up to for the past 80 years.

queen christina
queen christina | MGM

If you were born in 1933...

The BIGGEST movie wasQueen Christina, which grossed $1.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winnerwasCavalcade, which also won Oscars for Best Director (Frank Lloyd) and Best Art Direction.
But the best movie wasKing Kong. In a year of life-spanning dramas, this genre monster must be recognized for Fay Wray’s magnetic performance, the thrilling adventure story, and pioneering animation techniques.

If you were born in 1932...

The BIGGEST movie wasKid from Spain, which grossed $2.6 million million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasGrand Hotel, and that was it, because this winner wasn't nominated for squat beyond Best Picture (which has yet to happen again in Oscar history).
But the best movie wasGrand Hotel. They may have overlooked the movie in other categories, but the Oscars got Best Picture right -- it’s a constantly engaging look at overlapping lives in a beautiful space.

If you were born in 1931...

The BIGGEST movie wasPalmy Days, which grossed $1.6 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasCimarron, which also won Oscars for Best Writing, Adaptation, and Best Art Direction.
But the best movie wasCity Lights. Chaplin’s most touching turn as The Tramp is also a tour-de-force of physical comedy, wherein in he befriends a millionaire by talking him out of suicide and brings a flower girl out of poverty by going to prison.

If you were born in 1930...

The BIGGEST movie wasWhoopee, which grossed $2.7 million million in the United States.
The Best Picture winnerwasAll Quiet on the Western Front, which also won an Oscar for Best Director (Lewis Milestone).
But the best movie wasAll Quiet on the Western Front. A masterful, thoughtful adaptation of the acclaimed novel, which acts as a ground-level chronicle of the nature of men fighting in the trenches.

If you were born in 1929...

The BIGGEST movie wasSunnyside Up, which grossed $3.3 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasThe Broadway Melody, which failed to win any additional statues.
But the best movie wasDisraeli. George Arliss, the first Brit to win an Oscar, brings the historical figure to booming life as a rakish schemer in this story of how Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli secured India for the British Empire.

The Passion of Joan of Arc
The Passion of Joan of Arc | The Criterion Collection

If you were born in 1928...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Singing Fool, which grossed $5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner was… nothing! Because the Oscars took place every two years, the Academy totally shafted eligible 1928 movies.
But the best movie wasThe Passion of Joan of Arc. Carl Theodor Dreyer's spellbinding exploration of the teen saint looms large, utilizing every silent film convention to its fullest and close-ups of Maria Falconetti's intense gaze.

If you were born in 1927...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Jazz Singer, which grossed $3.5 million in the United States.
The Best Picture winner wasWings, which took home the very first Best Picture Oscar, along with one for Best Engineering Effects.
But the best movie wasMetropolis. A robust, impressionistic vision of the future where our own creations seek to destroy us, this astounding epic from Fritz Lang was like a Flapper Age Terminator.

The Academy of Arts Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences launched the first Oscars ceremony in 1929 to celebrate the two prior years in movies. Before 1927, everyone had to figure out what to like on their own.

If you were born in 1926...

The BIGGEST movie wasWhat Price Glory, which grossed $2 million in the United States.
But the best movie wasThe General. Buster Keaton's masterpiece of death-defying stunts aboard a stolen train should have you scoffing at most modern green screen action. 

If you were born in 1925...

The BIGGEST movie wasBen-Hur: A Tale of the Christ, which grossed $4 million in the United States.
But the best movie wasThe Big Parade. A vital anti-war film, chronicling the changes in a young man's life after he enlists in WWI, that inspired an untold number of war-set films that followed.

The Thief of Bagdad
The Thief of Bagdad | United Artists/Public Domain

If you were born in 1924...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Sea Hawk, which grossed $2 million in the United States.
But the best movie wasThe Thief of Bagdad. Douglas Fairbanks leveraged his star power to meticulously craft this phenomenal fantasy of flying horses, caliph daughters, and palace intrigue.

If you were born in 1923...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Covered Wagon, which grossed $3.5 million in the United States.
But the best movie wasSafety Last!. This plucky story of a young man who accidentally climbs a 12-story building for a publicity stunt showcases Harold Lloyd's fantastic comedic talent and a slew of impressive (invisible) camera trickery.

If you were born in 1922...

The BIGGEST movie wasBlood and Sand, which grossed $1.3 million in the United States.
But the best movie wasNosferatu. The haunting thrill of F.W. Murnau's shadowy monstrosity creeping murderously up the stairs has terrified us for almost a century.

The Kid
The Kid | The Criterion Collection

If you were born in 1921...

The BIGGEST movie wasFour Horsemen of the Apocalypse, which grossed $4.5 million in the United States.
But the best movie was The Kid. Yes, you've seen Charlie Chaplin’s name many times on this list, but that's because he's one of the best of the silent era. This comedic drama where The Tramp finds and protects an orphaned child is another achievement.

If you were born in 1920...

The BIGGEST movie wasWay Down East, which grossed $2 million in the United States.
But the best movie was The Mark of Zorro. The Batman movie of its time, this launched the already popular Douglas Fairbanks into a new realm of genre fame and created a benchmark for action films of the time.

Male and Female
Male and Female | Public Domain

If you were born in 1919...

The BIGGEST movie wasThe Miracle Man, which grossed $3 million in the United States.
But the best movie wasMale and Female. Cecil B. DeMille and Gloria Swanson make beautiful (silent) music together when an aristocrat and her love-struck butler get stranded on a desert island and reverse roles, complete with a trademark DeMille fantasy sequence.

If you were born in 1918...

The BIGGEST movie wasMickey, which grossed $8 million worldwide.
But the best movie wasMickey. Unfortunately, many films of this era are now lost, but this crowd-pleasing, visually inventive tale about a young woman moving from a mining town to New York City stands out among the movies we can still see.

If you were born in 1917...

The BIGGEST movie wasCleopatra, which grossed $2 million worldwide.
But the best movie was The Poor Little Rich Girl. Mary Pickford proves her producing and acting prowess in this WWI romance that helped define "Classical Hollywood" style.

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Scott Beggs is a 10-year veteran of film writing whose work appears at Vanity Fair, Nerdist, and IndieWire. Ask him for other ways to keep you up at night @scottmbeggs.

Matt Patches is Thrillist's executive Entertainment editor. His previous work appeared on Grantland, Esquire.com, and Vulture. Find him on Twitter @misterpatches.