10 classic movies with a 100% Rotten Tomatoes score you have to see at least once

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The ‘Flawless club’

The Golden Age of Hollywood is renowned for producing some of the most iconic films in cinematic history. From the 1930s to the 1940s, audiences were captivated by the timeless stories, unforgettable characters, and pioneering filmmaking techniques that continue to inspire filmmakers today.

In our quest to revisit these beloved classics, we delved into Rotten Tomatoes‘ to uncover the true gems of this era. Our search revealed a handful of films that have achieved a perfect 100% rating on the site, solidifying their place in film history.

These films not only represent the pinnacle of filmmaking from their respective countries, but they have stood the test of time and continue to inspire new generations of cinephiles and filmmakers alike.

Here are the ten classic movies with a perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes.

Seven Samurai
IMDb

1. ‘Seven Samurai’ (1954)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Seven Samurai is a timeless masterpiece of world cinema that has captivated audiences for decades. Directed by the legendary filmmaker Akira Kurosawa, the film tells the story of a group of samurai who come together to protect a village from marauding bandits. The film is renowned for its masterful storytelling, complex characters, and epic battle sequences that still leave audiences in awe to this day.

The film’s expertly crafted screenplay, innovative cinematography, and nuanced performances have solidified its place in cinematic history, and its influence can be seen in countless films that have followed in its wake.

Critics said:  “Arguably Akira Kurosawa’s masterpiece, The Seven Samurai is an epic adventure classic with an engrossing story, memorable characters, and stunning action sequences that make it one of the most influential films ever made.” RT

Philadelphia Story"
IMDb

2. ‘ The Philadelphia Story’

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

The classic 1940 romantic comedy-drama boasts a star-studded cast, including Katharine Hepburn, Cary Grant, and James Stewart. The film follows the wealthy and headstrong Tracy Lord (Hepburn) as she navigates the complexities of love and marriage during her highly publicized wedding.

“The Philadelphia Story” became an instant hit and received six Academy Award nominations, winning two for Best Actor and Best Screenplay. It remains a beloved classic with its witty banter, impeccable performances, and enduring themes, “Philadelphia Story” continues to captivate audiences over 80 years later.

Critics said: “Offering a wonderfully witty script, spotless direction from George Cukor, and typically excellent lead performances, The Philadelphia Story is an unqualified classic.”  RT

Robin Hood
IMDb

3. ‘The Adventures of Robin Hood’ (1938)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

A classic swashbuckling adventure film from 1938  “The Adventures of Robin Hood”  has remained a beloved favorite among audiences of all ages. Starring the iconic Errol Flynn as the dashing hero Robin Hood, the film tells the story of a band of Merry Men who rob from the rich to give to the poor, all while trying to outsmart the wicked Prince John and his henchman, the Sheriff of Nottingham.

The film’s enduring legacy is also due in part to its impact on pop culture. From its iconic theme song to its influence on countless films and television shows over the years. It won three Academy Awards, including Best Art Direction and Best Original Score.

Critics said: “ Errol Flynn thrills as the legendary title character, and the film embodies the type of imaginative family adventure tailor-made for the silver screen.”RT

Laura
IMDb

4. ‘Laura’ (1944)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Directed by Otto Preminger, ‘Laura’ is a captivating film noir murder mystery. The movie revolves around a detective, played by Dana Andrews, who becomes increasingly obsessed with the enigmatic Laura (Gene Tierney), a woman presumed dead. As the detective delves deeper into Laura’s life, he uncovers a web of deceit and unrequited love. The film won an Academy Award for Best Cinematography and was nominated for four more. ‘Laura’ is celebrated for its hauntingly beautiful score, atmospheric cinematography, and nuanced performances, and it has secured its place as a classic of the film noir genre.

Critics said: “A psychologically complex portrait of obsession, Laura is also a deliciously well-crafted murder mystery.” RT

The Treasure of the Sierra Madre' (1948)
IMDb

5. ‘The Treasure of the Sierra Madre’ (1948)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

This gritty tale of greed, directed by John Huston and starring Humphrey Bogart, remains as impactful today as it was upon release. The film follows the journey of three Americans in Mexico who set out to prospect for gold, only to have their camaraderie disintegrate under the strain of suspicion and paranoia. ‘The Treasure of the Sierra Madre’ won three Academy Awards, including Best Director and Best Supporting Actor for John Huston’s father, Walter Huston, making them the first father-son duo to win Oscars for the same film. With its powerful performances and enduring themes, the film remains a classic of American cinema.It took home three Academy Awards, including Best Director and Best Supporting Actor for Huston’s father, Walter Huston.

Critics said:“Remade but never duplicated, this darkly humorous morality tale represents John Huston at his finest.” RT

Singin in the rain
IMDb

6. ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ (1952)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

This Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen-directed musical comedy is a love letter to the Golden Age of Hollywood. Starring Kelly, Debbie Reynolds, and Donald O’Connor, it was not only a box-office success but is also considered one of the greatest musicals ever made. Despite being overlooked at the Academy Awards with only two nominations, ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ has since been acknowledged as one of the greatest musicals and one of the finest films ever made. Its titular song-and-dance sequence, performed by Kelly, remains one of the most iconic scenes in film history.

Critics said: “Clever, incisive, and funny, Singin’ in the Rain is a masterpiece of the classical Hollywood musical.” RT

12 angry men
IMDb

7. ’12 Angry Men’ (1957)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Sidney Lumet’s courtroom drama, starring Henry Fonda, is a tense exploration of justice and prejudice. It was nominated for three Academy Awards, including Best Picture, but its real victory is its enduring influence and reputation as one of the greatest films ever made.

The film’s expertly crafted screenplay, masterful direction, and powerful performances have made it a classic of the courtroom drama genre. With its perfect score on Rotten Tomatoes, it is clear that 12 Angry Men has stood the test of time as a cinematic masterpiece.

Critics said: “Sidney Lumet’s feature debut is a superbly written, dramatically effective courtroom thriller that rightfully stands as a modern classic.”RT

The Kid
IMDb

8. ‘The Kid’ (1921)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

This silent film marked Charlie Chaplin’s debut as a feature-length director. In ‘The Kid’, Chaplin’s iconic character, the Little Tramp, finds an abandoned baby and decides to raise him. The film navigates between heartfelt drama and comedy as the Tramp and the kid, played brilliantly by Jackie Coogan, form an unconventional family. Although it predates the Academy Awards, ‘The Kid’ is widely celebrated for its blend of humor and sentimentality, and it solidified Chaplin’s status as a master of silent cinema.

Critics said: “Charles Chaplin’s irascible Tramp is given able support from Jackie Coogan as The Kid in this slapstick masterpiece, balancing the guffaws with moments of disarming poignancy.” RT

M
IMDb

9. ‘M’ (1931)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

M is a groundbreaking German thriller directed by Fritz Lang, released in 1931. The film tells the story of a city gripped by fear as a serial killer preys on young children. What makes M so remarkable is Lang’s innovative approach to filmmaking. The film was one of the first to use sound in a creative way, and Lang’s use of shadow and light to create a dark and foreboding atmosphere is unparalleled. The film’s star, Peter Lorre, delivers a haunting performance as the killer, conveying a chilling sense of desperation and psychosis. M has since become a seminal work of German cinema and is widely regarded as a classic of the thriller genre.

Critics said: “A landmark psychological thriller with arresting images, deep thoughts on modern society, and Peter Lorre in his finest performance.”  RT

The Grapes of Wrath
IMDb

10. ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ (1940)

Rotten Tomatoes Score: 100%

Directed by John Ford and based on John Steinbeck’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name, ‘The Grapes of Wrath’ is a poignant depiction of the Joad family’s struggle to escape the Dust Bowl of Oklahoma for the promised land of California during the Great Depression. The film is a powerful exploration of human resilience in the face of brutal economic forces and societal hardships. Henry Fonda’s performance as Tom Joad is particularly memorable, earning him an Academy Award nomination. The film itself won two Academy Awards for Best Director and Best Supporting Actress (Jane Darwell as Ma Joad), and was nominated for five others.

Critics said: “ A potent drama that is as socially important today as when it was made, The Grapes of Wrath is affecting, moving, and deservedly considered an American classic.”  RT

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