film The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made  

Ranker Film
113.7k votes 9.3k voters 157.6k views 85 items

List Rules Vote up the films that tried to be groundbreaking in their form or message, but in a self-indulgent way that makes you roll your eyes.

What are the most pretentious movies ever made? Well, that's a pretty subjective question, but since you asked we'll try to nail down a definition so we can all vote on it. Pretentious films, "arty films," and "hipster movies" often get lumped together, but there definitely is a difference. The first two types of films use atmosphere and characters to create a unique mood or statement. Whether the movie is pretentious or not depends on your opinion. Did you like this movie? You probably think it's artsy and cool. Did you find it to be snobby and purposefully confusing? You'd probably put that on your list of pretentious, condescending movies to never watch again. Was it directed by Wes Anderson? You probably have a hipster film on your hands.

Pretentious movies or "film snob movies" are essentially snobby movies that try to be groundbreaking, but are they really? Could anyone even sit through Tree of Life or Cosmopolis? We're all friends here, you can admit it. Other snobby films think that they have a really important, intellectual premise and then they just hit you over the head with it over and over again. (Thanks for the lesson on racism Crash, we get it now!) If you watch a movie and leave with the feeling that you've been mansplained to for 90 minutes... you may have a pretentious movie on your hands! Vote 'em up!

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Crash is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Crash Sandra Bullock, Brendan Fraser, Ludacris Crash is a 2004 ensemble drama film co-written, produced, and directed by Paul Haggis. The film is about racial and social tensions in Los Angeles, California. A self-described "passion ...more

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Titanic is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Guest_519428fe-3a31-44f5-bd51-f1d9fe3e4dc8 added Titanic Leonardo DiCaprio, Kate Winslet, Kathy Bates Titanic is a 1997 American epic romantic disaster drama film directed, written, co-produced, and co-edited by James Cameron. A fictionalized account of the sinking of the RMS Titanic, it stars ...more

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Braveheart is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Greg Kootstra added Braveheart Mel Gibson, Sophie Marceau, Brendan Gleeson Braveheart is a 1995 epic historical medieval war drama film directed by and starring Mel Gibson. Gibson portrays William Wallace, a 13th-century Scottish warrior who led the Scots in the First ...more

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Vanilla Sky is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
James Holland added Vanilla Sky Cameron Diaz, Tom Cruise, Penélope Cruz Vanilla Sky is a 2001 American science fiction thriller film directed, written, and co-produced by Cameron Crowe. It is an English-language remake of Alejandro Amenábar's 1997 Spanish ...more

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Black Swan is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
William Gatevackes added Black Swan Natalie Portman, Mila Kunis, Winona Ryder Black Swan is a 2010 American psychological thriller-horror film directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Natalie Portman, Vincent Cassel, and Mila Kunis. The plot revolves around a production ...more

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Donnie Darko is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Donnie Darko Drew Barrymore, Ashley Tisdale, Jake Gyllenhaal Donnie Darko is a 2001 American supernatural drama film written and directed by Richard Kelly and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Drew Barrymore, Patrick Swayze, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Noah Wyle, Jena ...more

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Eyes Wide Shut is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Eyes Wide Shut Tom Cruise, Nicole Kidman, Stanley Kubrick Eyes Wide Shut is a 1999 American erotic thriller film loosely based upon Arthur Schnitzler's 1926 novella Dream Story. The film was directed, produced, and co-written by Stanley Kubrick. It was ...more

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Lucy is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Lucy Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman, Analeigh Tipton Lucy is a 2014 English-language French science fiction action film written and directed by Luc Besson and produced by his wife Virginie Silla for his company Europacorp. The film was shot in ...more

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Juno is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
James Holland added Juno Jennifer Garner, Ellen Page, Jason Bateman Juno is a 2007 Canadian-American comedy-drama film directed by Jason Reitman and written by Diablo Cody. Ellen Page stars as the title character, an independent-minded teenager confronting an ...more

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Requiem for a Dream is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Requiem for a Dream Jennifer Connelly, Jared Leto, Ellen Burstyn Requiem for a Dream is a 2000 American psychological drama film directed by Darren Aronofsky and starring Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly, and Marlon Wayans. The film is based on ...more

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Mother is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Mother! Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Michelle Pfeiffer mother! is an American psychological horror thriller film, written and directed by Darren Aronofsky. A couple's relationship is tested when uninvited guests arrive at their home, disrupting ...more

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Inception is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Inception Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard Inception is a 2010 science fiction heist thriller film written, produced, and directed by Christopher Nolan. The film stars a large ensemble cast that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page, ...more

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Fight Club is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Fight Club Brad Pitt, Jared Leto, Helena Bonham Carter Fight Club is a 1999 film based on the 1996 novel of the same name by Chuck Palahniuk. The film was directed by David Fincher, and stars Brad Pitt, Edward Norton and Helena Bonham Carter. Norton ...more

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Cloud Atlas is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Cloud Atlas Halle Berry, Tom Hanks, Susan Sarandon Cloud Atlas is a 2012 science fiction film written and directed by Lana Wachowski, Tom Tykwer and Andy Wachowski. Adapted from the 2004 novel of the same name by David Mitchell, the film has ...more

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Patch Adams is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Greg Kootstra added Patch Adams Robin Williams, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Monica Potter Patch Adams is a 1998 semi-biographical comedy-drama film starring Robin Williams, Monica Potter, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Bob Gunton. Directed by Tom Shadyac, it is based on the life story of ...more

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Schindler's List is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Andy Prendergast added Schindler's List Liam Neeson, Ralph Fiennes, Ben Kingsley Schindler's List is a 1993 American epic historical period drama, directed and co-produced by Steven Spielberg and scripted by Steven Zaillian. It is based on the novel Schindler's Ark by Thomas ...more

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Steel Magnolias is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Greg Kootstra added Steel Magnolias Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Shirley MacLaine Steel Magnolias is a 1989 American comedy-drama film directed by Herbert Ross, based on the 1987 play by Robert Harling. A young beautician (Daryl Hannah), newly arrived in a small Louisiana ...more

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I Am Sam is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Greg Kootstra added I Am Sam Michelle Pfeiffer, Sean Penn, Dakota Fanning I Am Sam is a 2001 American drama film written and directed by Jessie Nelson, and starring Sean Penn as a father with a developmental disability, Dakota Fanning as his inquisitive seven-year-old ...more

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Birdman is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Birdman Emma Stone, Naomi Watts, Edward Norton Birdman or, commonly referred to as Birdman, is a 2014 American black comedy-drama film co-written, produced, and directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu. It stars Michael ...more

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The Godfather is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Phillip Lee Whaling added The Godfather Al Pacino, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall The Godfather is a 1972 American crime film directed by Francis Ford Coppola and produced by Albert S. Ruddy from a screenplay by Mario Puzo and Coppola. Starring Marlon Brando and Al Pacino as ...more

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Garden State is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Garden State Natalie Portman, Jim Parsons, Ian Holm Garden State is a 2004 comedy-drama film written and directed by Zach Braff and starring Natalie Portman, Peter Sarsgaard, Ian Holm and Braff himself. The film centers on Andrew Largeman, a ...more

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Batman Returns is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Batman Returns Michelle Pfeiffer, Christopher Walken, Danny DeVito Batman Returns is a 1992 American superhero film, directed and produced by Tim Burton, based upon the Batman character appearing in comics published by DC Comics. It is the second installment of ...more

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Across the Universe is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Across the Universe Salma Hayek, Evan Rachel Wood, Bono At once gritty, whimsical and highly theatrical, Revolution Studios’ Across the Universe is a groundbreaking movie musical, springing from the imagination of renowned writer-director Julie ...more

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The Tree of Life is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
The Tree of Life Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, Jessica Chastain The Tree of Life is a 2011 American experimental drama film written and directed by Terrence Malick and starring Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, and Jessica Chastain. The film chronicles the origins and ...more

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Brokeback Mountain is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Brokeback Mountain Anne Hathaway, Jake Gyllenhaal, Kate Mara Brokeback Mountain is a 2005 American epic romantic drama film directed by Ang Lee. It is a film adaptation of the 1997 short story of the same name by Annie Proulx; the screenplay was written ...more

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Bowling for Columbine is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Bowling for Columbine Bowling for Columbine is a 2002 American documentary film written, directed, and narrated by Michael Moore. The film explores what Moore suggests are the main causes for the Columbine High ...more

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Little Miss Sunshine is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
James Holland added Little Miss Sunshine Steve Carell, Bryan Cranston, Toni Collette Little Miss Sunshine is a 2006 American comedy-drama road film and the directorial film debut of the husband-wife team of Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris. The screenplay was written by ...more

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Craig Haddad added Scott Pilgrim vs. the World Anna Kendrick, Chris Evans, Mary Elizabeth Winstead Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a 2010 comedy film co-written, produced and directed by Edgar Wright, based on the graphic novel series Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O'Malley. It stars Michael Cera ...more

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The Shape of Water is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Andy Prendergast added The Shape of Water Sally Hawkins, Michael Shannon, Richard Jenkins The Shape of Water is a 2017 American fantasy romance film directed by Guillermo del Toro. Lonely Elisa (Sally Hawkins) is trapped in a life of silence and isolation until she discovers a secret ...more

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Dead Poets Society is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Dead Poets Society Robin Williams, Ethan Hawke, Lara Flynn Boyle Dead Poets Society is a 1989 American drama film written by Tom Schulman, directed by Peter Weir and starring Robin Williams. Set at the conservative and aristocratic Welton Academy in the ...more

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The English Patient is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
C_Moorehead added The English Patient Willem Dafoe, Ralph Fiennes, Colin Firth The English Patient is a 1996 romantic drama directed by Anthony Minghella from his own script based on the novel of the same name by Michael Ondaatje and produced by Saul Zaentz. The film was ...more

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Lost in Translation is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Andy Prendergast added Lost in Translation Scarlett Johansson, Bill Murray, Anna Faris Lost in Translation is a 2003 American comedy-drama film written and directed by Sofia Coppola. It was her second feature film after The Virgin Suicides. It stars Bill Murray, Scarlett ...more

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Mulholland Drive is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Mulholland Drive Naomi Watts, Billy Ray Cyrus, Melissa George Mulholland Drive is a 2001 American neo-noir mystery film written and directed by David Lynch and starring Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, and Justin Theroux. It tells the story of an aspiring ...more

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Eternal Sunshine of the Spotle... is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
James Holland added Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Carrey Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a 2004 American romantic science-fiction comedy-drama film about an estranged couple who have each other erased from their memories, written by Charlie ...more

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Extremely Loud and Incredibly ... is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close Sandra Bullock, Tom Hanks, John Goodman Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is a 2011 American drama film adaptation of the novel of the same name by Jonathan Safran Foer, directed by Stephen Daldry and written by Eric Roth. It stars ...more

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The Life Aquatic with Steve Zi... is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
James Holland added The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou Cate Blanchett, Bill Murray, Willem Dafoe The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou is a 2004 American comedy-drama film directed, co-written, and co-produced by Wes Anderson. It is Anderson's fourth feature length film, released in the U.S. ...more

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Magnolia is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Magnolia Tom Cruise, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman Magnolia is a 1999 American drama film written, produced, and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson and starring Jeremy Blackman, Tom Cruise, Philip Baker Hall, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ricky Jay, ...more

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The Avengers is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Jason Basa added The Avengers Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo Marvel's The Avengers is a 2012 American superhero film directed by Joss Whedon, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team. Earth's mightiest heroes must come together and learn to fight as a ...more

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Babel is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
James Holland added Babel Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Elle Fanning Babel is a 2006 American-Mexican-French drama film directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu and written by Guillermo Arriaga, starring an ensemble cast. The multi-narrative ...more

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Indiana Jones and the Raiders ... is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Jason Basa added Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark Harrison Ford, Alfred Molina, Karen Allen Raiders of the Lost Ark is a 1981 American adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg. The screenplay by Lawrence Kasdan was from a story by George Lucas and Philip Kaufman. It was produced by ...more

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I Heart Huckabees is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
I Heart Huckabees Naomi Watts, Isla Fisher, Mark Wahlberg I ♥ Huckabees is a 2004 American philosophical comedy film from Fox Searchlight. It was produced and directed by David O. Russell, who co-wrote the screenplay with Jeff Baena. The film stars an ...more

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Apocalypse Now is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Apocalypse Now Marlon Brando, Harrison Ford, Robert Duvall Apocalypse Now is a 1979 American epic adventure war film set during the Vietnam War. Produced and directed by Francis Ford Coppola and starring Marlon Brando, Martin Sheen, and Robert Duvall. ...more

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Justin Bieber: Never Say Never is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
WiccaGirlKaite added Justin Bieber: Never Say Never Justin Bieber: Never Say Never is a 2011 3-D concert film centering on singer Justin Bieber. It was released in the United States and Canada on February 11, 2011. A sequel to Never Say Never was ...more

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Star Wars is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Jason Basa added Star Wars Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Mark Hamill Star Wars is a 1977 American epic space opera film written and directed by George Lucas. The first release in the Star Wars franchise, it stars Mark Hamill, Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher, Peter ...more

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The Deer Hunter is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
The Deer Hunter Meryl Streep, Robert De Niro, Christopher Walken The Deer Hunter is a 1978 American epic war drama film co-written and directed by Michael Cimino about a trio of Russian American steelworkers and their service in the Vietnam War. The film ...more

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Her is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Andy Prendergast added Her

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The Thin Red Line is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
Guest_519428fe-3a31-44f5-bd51-f1d9fe3e4dc8 added The Thin Red Line George Clooney, John Travolta, Sean Penn The Thin Red Line is a 1998 American ensemble epic war film written and directed by Terrence Malick. Based on the novel by James Jones, it tells a fictionalized version of the Battle of Mount ...more

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Annie Hall is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
C_Moorehead added Annie Hall Woody Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Christopher Walken Annie Hall is a 1977 American romantic comedy directed by Woody Allen from a screenplay he co-wrote with Marshall Brickman. Produced by Allen's manager, Charles H. Joffe, the film stars Allen as ...more

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The Darjeeling Limited is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
The Darjeeling Limited Natalie Portman, Bill Murray, Owen Wilson The Darjeeling Limited is a 2007 comedy-drama film directed by Wes Anderson, and starring Owen Wilson, Adrien Brody, and Jason Schwartzman. It was written by Anderson, Schwartzman, and Roman ...more

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The Fountain is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Most Pretentious Movies Ever Made
The Fountain Hugh Jackman, Rachel Weisz, Ellen Burstyn The Fountain is a 2006 American drama film that blends elements of fantasy, history, spirituality, and science fiction. It is directed by Darren Aronofsky, and stars Hugh Jackman and Rachel ...more