I don't have time to give my thoughts right now, but will do so later. My kids 6 & 4, have seen 9 of these films (and will see King Kong as soon as the DVD comes out). Not bad considering there are 13 I haven't seen. A number of the films on this list I don't think they're old enough to see yet: http://www.bfi.org.uk/education/events/watchthis/ On 13 July 2005 the bfi (and the Barbican jointly hosted a debate called Watch This! to discuss whether there should be a list of films that all children should see by the age of 14. Participants at the debate, as well as a number of children's film organisations across Europe and individuals including bfi staff, filmmakers and teachers, were invited to submit nominations. The following is an alphabetical list of the ten most recommended films for children to see: * Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio De Sica, 1948, Italy) * ET The Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982, USA) * Kes (Ken Loach, 1969, UK) * The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955, USA) * Les Quatre Cents Coups (François Truffaut, 1959, France) * Show Me Love (Lukas Moodysson, 1998, Sw/Dk) * Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki, 2001, Japan) * Toy Story (John Lasseter, 1995, USA) * Where is the Friend's House? (Abbas Kiarostami, 1987, Iran) * The Wizard of Oz (Victor Fleming, 1939, USA) Top fifty films for children up to the age of 14 In alphabetical order: * A Day at the Races (Sam Wood, 1937, USA) * The Adventures of Robin Hood (Michael Curtiz/William Keighley, 1938, USA) * Au revoir les enfants (Louis Malle, 1987, France/W.Germany) * Back to the Future (Robert Zemeckis, 1985, USA) * Beauty and the Beast (Gary Trousdale/Kirk Wise, 1991, USA) * Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio De Sica, 1948, Italy) * Billy Elliot (Stephen Daldry, 2000, UK/France) * E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (Steven Spielberg, 1982, USA) * Edward Scissorhands (Tim Burton, 1990, USA) * Etre et Avoir (Nicolas Philibert, 2002, France) * Finding Nemo (Andrew Stanton/Lee Unkrich, 2003, USA) * It's a Wonderful Life (Frank Capra, 1946, USA) * Jason and the Argonauts (Don Chaffey, 1963, UK/USA) * Kes (Ken Loach, 1969, UK) * The Kid (Charles Chaplin, 1921, USA) * King Kong (Merian C.Cooper/Ernest B.Schoedsack, 1933, USA) * Kirikou et la sorcière (Michel Ocelot, 1998, France/Belgium/Luxembourg) * La Belle et la bête (Jean Cocteau, 1946, France / Luxembourg) * Le Voyage dans la lune (Georges Melies, 1902, France) * Les Quatre cents coups (Francois Truffaut, 1959, France) * Monsieur Hulot's Holiday (Jacques Tati, 1953, France) * My Life as a Dog (Lasse Halstrom, 1985, Sweden) * My Neighbour Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988, Japan/USA) * The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton, 1955, USA) * Oliver Twist (David Lean, 1948, UK) * The Outsiders (Francis Ford Coppola, 1983, USA) * Pather Panchali (Satyajit Ray, 1955, India) * Playtime (Jacques Tati, 1967, France/Italy) * The Princess Bride (Rob Reiner, 1987, USA) * Rabbit-Proof Fence (Phillip Noyce, 2002, Australia) * Raiders of the Lost Ark (Steven Spielberg, 1981, USA) * The Railway Children (Lionel Jeffries, 1970, UK) * The Red Balloon (Albert Lamorisse, 1956, France) * Romeo + Juliet (Baz Luhrman, 1996, USA) * The Secret Garden (Agnieszka Holland, 1993, UK/USA) * Show Me Love (Lukas Moodysson, 1998, Sweden/Denmark) * Singin' in the Rain (Stanley Donen/Gene Kelly, 1952, USA) * Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (Disney, 1937, USA) * Some Like it Hot (Billy Wilder, 1959, USA) * The Spirit of the Beehive (Victor Erice, 1973, Spain) * Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki, 2001, Japan) * Star Wars (George Lucas, 1977, USA) * To Kill a Mockingbird (Robert Mulligan, 1962, USA) * Toy Story (John Lasseter, 1995, USA) * Walkabout (Nicholas Roeg, 1971, UK) * Whale Rider (Niki Caro, 2002, New Zealand) * Where is the Friend's House? (Abbas Kiarostami, 1987, Iran) * Whistle Down the Wind (Bryan Forbes, 1961, UK) * The White Balloon (Jafar Panahi, 1995, Iran) * The Wizard of Oz (Victor Fleming, 1939, USA) This list is based on nominations and votes from those attending the Watch This! debate at the Barbican Cinema on 13 July 2005, from a wide range of individuals, including filmmakers and teachers, and from a number of children's film organisations across Europe. While most public debate about children's film viewing focuses on protection rather than entitlement, the Watch This! debate showed how passionately people care about children's film heritage. We know that the films on the list aren't just there because people think they'd be good for children: they're films that people have shown to their own families or to pupils and they know how much children have enjoyed them. Both the Top Ten and Top Fifty are surprising, thought-provoking lists and in no way final. Points of possible contention include the shortage of British films represented, the relative lack of cultural diversity and the preponderance of boys as central characters. We hope people will go on arguing about them so that the list can evolve. The list demonstrates just how diverse a range of classic and world cinema can be made available to children, and we hope that it will generate further action leading to more diverse and adventurous TV commissioning, DVD publishing, cinema distribution and programming.