Hitchcock’s ‘Vertigo’ Ends 50-Year Reign of ‘Citizen Kane’

The British Film Institute's once-a-decade critics poll calls "Vertigo" the best film ever made

Last Updated: August 1, 2012 @ 2:10 PM

Alfred Hitchcock has dethroned Orson Welles.

Welles' "Citizen Kane" has ruled as the greatest film ever made, according to critics' polls by the British Film Institute's Sight & Sound magazine.

Every 10 years since 1962, when the magazine asked critics to name their top 10, "Kane" reigned.

Until now.

But the 2012 poll results announced Tuesday place Hitchcock's psychological drama "Vertigo" first. "Citizen Kane" slid to second place.

"Vertigo" follows a private eye, played by James Stewart, in San Francisco who is hired to track a man's wife. He falls in love with her, but  tragically fails to stop the woman, played by Kim Novak, from commiting suicide by jumping from a bridge because he is afraid of heights.

The list also included a newcomer — Dziga Vertov's documentary "Man With a Movie Camera," which placed eighth.

Here is the full list:

1. "Vertigo" (Alfred Hitchcock, 1958)
2. "Citizen Kane" (Orson Welles, 1941)
3. "Tokyo Story" (Yasujiro Ozu, 1953)
4. "The Rules of the Game" (Jean Renoir, 1939)
5. "Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans" (F.W. Murnau, 1927)
6. "2001: A Space Odyssey" (Stanley Kubrick, 1968)
7. "The Searchers" (John Ford, 1956)
8. "Man With a Movie Camera" (Dziga Vertov, 1929)
9. "The Passion of Joan of Arc" (Carl Theodor Dreyer, 1928)
10. "8 1/2" (Federico Fellini, 1963)