film The Best Movies About Movies  

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List Rules Films about filmmaking or that have a show-within-a-show

The best movies about movies are those which capture the magic of film making in an actual film. That's no easy task, but some of the films listed here are indeed a movie within a movie, taking viewers on a wild and sometimes confusing ride. Some of the movies that earned a spot on the list are critically acclaimed films, considered among the best movies of all time, and with good reason. Vote for the movies about movies that you loved the most, vote down any that you didn't like, and rerank this list in any order you want.

Some of the most iconic films in cinema history were actually movies about movies. The classic musical 'Singin' in the Rain' and the brilliant Sunset Boulevard, arguably one of the greatest film noir movies ever made, are great examples. In recent years, two films: 'The Artist' and 'Argo' won Academy Awards for best picture. What do they have in common? They were both movies essentially about movies (though the subject matter was vastly different).

Once you start thinking about it, a lot of major Hollywood films are about making movies. Is it any wonder? Filmmakers know their craft, so why not make a personal movie about the process? Some of the best living directors like Martin Scorsese, Woody Allen and Christopher Guest have made films about films.

Some of these films are comedies, others are suspenseful, tension-filled nail-biters, but all of the films on this list are, in some way, about the magic of making movies. What is the greatest movie about a movie ever made? That's subjective, though this list offers more than a few excellent choices. It is, however, not complete, so feel free to add your suggestions as well.
list ordered by

1
+ - 62 14
Sunset Boulevard is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Sunset Boulevard William Holden, Buster Keaton, Gloria Swanson

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2
+ - 76 26
Singin' in the Rain is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Singin' in the Rain Debbie Reynolds, Gene Kelly, Rita Moreno

3
+ - 57 15
Ed Wood is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Ed Wood Johnny Depp, Sarah Jessica Parker, Bill Murray

4
+ - 45 13
King Kong is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
King Kong Fay Wray, Merian C. Cooper, Bruce Cabot

5
+ - 55 26
The Artist is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Artist John Goodman, Malcolm McDowell, James Cromwell

6
+ - 56 34
Argo is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Argo Ben Affleck, John Goodman, Bryan Cranston

7
+ - 68 36
Tropic Thunder is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Tropic Thunder Tom Cruise, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Robert Downey Jr.

8
+ - 51 31
Boogie Nights is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Boogie Nights Julianne Moore, Mark Wahlberg, Heather Graham

9
+ - 32 24
8½ is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Claudia Cardinale, Marcello Mastroianni, Barbara Steele

10
+ - 30 25
Cinema Paradiso is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Cinema Paradiso Brigitte Bardot, John Wayne, Charlie Chaplin

11
+ - 26 15
The Player is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Player Julia Roberts, Bruce Willis, Whoopi Goldberg

12
+ - 32 26
Hugo is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Hugo Jude Law, Chloë Grace Moretz, Christopher Lee

13
+ - 20 15
The Bad and the Beautiful is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Bad and the Beautiful Kirk Douglas, Lana Turner, Walter Pidgeon

14
+ - 17 12
Day for Night is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Day for Night Jacqueline Bissett, Graham Greene, François Truffaut

15
+ - 17 12
Who Framed Roger Rabbit is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Who Framed Roger Rabbit Kathleen Turner, Christopher Lloyd, Bob Hoskins

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16
+ - 22 23
Adaptation is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Adaptation Nicolas Cage, Meryl Streep, Maggie Gyllenhaal

17
+ - 11 1
The Producers is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Producers Gene Wilder, Kenneth Mars, Zero Mostel

18
+ - 21 14
Sullivan's Travels is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Sullivan's Travels Veronica Lake, Preston Sturges, Elsa Lanchester

19
+ - 21 11
Silent Movie is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Silent Movie Liza Minnelli, Paul Newman, Mel Brooks

20
+ - 20 20
Inglourious Basterds is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Inglourious Basterds Brad Pitt, Michael Fassbender, Diane Kruger

21
+ - 23 15
Get Shorty is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Get Shorty John Travolta, John Wayne, Danny DeVito

22
+ - 11 13
The Aviator is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Aviator Kate Beckinsale, Leonardo DiCaprio, Gwen Stefani

23
+ - 13 7
The Purple Rose of Cairo is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Purple Rose of Cairo Viggo Mortensen, Mia Farrow, Jeff Daniels

24
+ - 7 1
Harlow is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Harlow Angela Lansbury, Ginger Rogers, Leslie Nielsen

25
+ - 11 12
Birdman is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Birdman Emma Stone, Naomi Watts, Edward Norton

26
+ - 7 7
Super 8 is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Super 8 Elle Fanning, AJ Michalka, Kyle Chandler

27
+ - 29 27
Bowfinger is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Bowfinger Robert Downey Jr., Eddie Murphy, Heather Graham

28
+ - 12 9
This Is Spinal Tap is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
This Is Spinal Tap Billy Crystal, Fran Drescher, Anjelica Huston

29
+ - 7 4
King Kong is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
King Kong Naomi Watts, Jack Black, Adrien Brody

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30
+ - 12 16
¡Three Amigos! is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
¡Three Amigos! Chevy Chase, Steve Martin, Phil Hartman

31
+ - 9 8
Saving Mr. Banks is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Saving Mr. Banks Tom Hanks, Colin Farrell, Emma Thompson

32
+ - 6 5
Man with a Movie Camera is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Movies About Movies

33
+ - 10 14
Hitchcock is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Hitchcock Scarlett Johansson, Jessica Biel, Helen Mirren

34
+ - 27 29
The Blair Witch Project is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Blair Witch Project Heather Donahue, Joshua Leonard, Michael C. Williams

35
+ - 15 16
Raging Bull is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Raging Bull Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Martin Scorsese

36
+ - 7 7
The Muppet Movie is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Muppet Movie Steve Martin, Mel Brooks, Richard Pryor

37
+ - 3 2
Targets is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Targets Randy Quaid, Boris Karloff, Peter Bogdanovich

38
+ - 5 9
Wag the Dog is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Wag the Dog Kirsten Dunst, Robert De Niro, Dustin Hoffman

39
+ - 4 3
The Bodyguard is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Bodyguard Whitney Houston, Kevin Costner, Debbie Reynolds

40
+ - 6 6
8mm is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
8mm Nicolas Cage, Joaquin Phoenix, James Gandolfini

41
+ - 6 6
L.A. Confidential is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
L.A. Confidential Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Kim Basinger

42
+ - 5 5
What Just Happened is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
What Just Happened Kristen Stewart, Bruce Willis, Robert De Niro

43
+ - 2 2
The Party is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The Party Peter Sellers, Peter Falk, Gavin MacLeod

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44
+ - 1 1
RKO 281 is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
RKO 281 Liev Schreiber, John Malkovich, Melanie Griffith

45
+ - 4 4
The First Wives Club is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
The First Wives Club Sarah Jessica Parker, Goldie Hawn, Heather Locklear

46
+ - 1 1
Real Life is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Real Life Albert Brooks, Harry Shearer, Charles Grodin

47
+ - 9 11
Chaplin is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Chaplin Robert Downey Jr., Milla Jovovich, Diane Lane

48
+ - 1 1
Movie Movie is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Movie Movie Eli Wallach, George Burns, George C. Scott

49
+ - 1 1
After the Fox is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
After the Fox Peter Sellers, Britt Ekland, Martin Balsam

50
+ - 4 4
Man Bites Dog is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Movies About Movies
Man Bites Dog Bernard Frédéric, Edith Lemerdy, Jacqueline Poelvoorde-Pappaert