America’s Favorite Movie Is 75 Years Old

Posted January 5th, 2015 at 2:47 pm (UTC-4)

Rhett Butler and Scarlett O'Hara dance in this scene from the movie "Gone With the Wind." (AP Photo/New Line Cinema, File)

Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara dance in this scene from the movie “Gone With the Wind.” (AP Photo/New Line Cinema, File)

It might be 75 years old, but the American Civil War saga Gone With the Wind remains firmly in the hearts of American moviegoers.

Based on Margaret Mitchell’s Pulitzer Prize winning historical romance, the film premiered in 1939 and followed the tumultuous love story of Scarlett O’Hara and Rhett Butler against the backdrop of the burning cities and hardships of war in the American South.

Films from a mix of genres–Star Wars, Titanic, The Godfather, Lord of the Rings–round out the top 5, according to a survey of 2,276 U.S. adults who were asked, “What is your favorite movie of all time?”


1. Gone With the Wind
2. Star Wars
3. Titanic
4. The Godfather
5. Lord of the Rings
6. Sound of Music
7. Dirty Dancing
8. Wizard of Oz
9. It’s a Wonderful Life
10. E.T.
Source: Harris Interactive Poll

Men and women differed in their opinions. Men were more likely to name Star Wars as their favorite, followed by The Godfather and Titanic. The top three for women were Gone With the Wind, Titanic and Dirty Dancing.

Millennials (ages 16-35) favored Titanic followed by Lord of the Rings and Star Wars. Gen Xers (36-50) put Star Wars first, and then Titanic and The Godfather.

The majority of people over 51 years old chose Gone with the Wind as their top pick. However, Baby Boomers (ages 51-69) picked Star Wars and Titanic to round out the top three while people over 69 preferred The Sound of Music and The Godfather.

Apparently, movie tastes also come down along partisan lines. The top pick for Republicans and Independents is Gone With the Wind but Democrats prefer Star Wars, followed by Gone With the Wind.

Four films that made the Top 10 in a 2008 poll fell out of favor. Casablanca, The Notebook, Forrest Gump and The Princess Bride failed to make the cut in 2014.

The survey was conducted in November 2014.

4 responses to “America’s Favorite Movie Is 75 Years Old”

  1. Cranksy (USA) says:

    Did anyone choose “Skakespeare in Love” expect me here and now?

  2. Cranksy (USA) says:

    After using the link and seeing the analysis by demographic characteristics, there seems to be very little differences between the groups. I think maybe there is such a thing as American culture.

    Why don’t we get along better?

  3. Blake says:

    Are there other polls out there? Hard to believe that Gone With the Wind was number one…. it’s so boring and melodramatic; couldn’t stand to watch it for more that 5 minutes with all the depressing retro/antique confederate plantation themes… Horrible, and very ugly period of American history. Star Wars sounds believable as actually being popular… and Wizard of Oz so far down the list? Huh? Remember how many times that movie (a product of brilliant imagination and talent) was remade due to its popularity, creativity, variety, and colorful themes. I’d like to see another poll conducted by someone else, maybe a broader number of people surveyed. Not all polls show the same results.

  4. Cherry says:

    It is true that Gone with the wind is the number one American movie of all time. I like the film Alvin and the Chipmunks trilogy, it has a sweet message to both young and old people. This film teaches us to appreciate everything that we have and learn to sing despite of the hardships that we meet everyday. I also enjoyed the movie trilogy of Disney High School Musical. It is more beautiful compared to the American TV drama Glee.

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