Top 7 Greatest Screenplays of The Century, According To The WGA
For those who were worried, we're good. Tarantino's Inglourious Basterds took a well-deserved eighth place on the list.
Over the course of the 21st century, certain screenplays have captured the hearts and minds of audiences and have become timeless gems in the world of filmmaking. Here, approved by the influential Writers Guild of America, are the top 7 greatest screenplays of the century so far.
1. Get Out (2017)
Inspired by The Stepford Wives, Jordan Peele's Get Out shattered conventions and redefined the horror genre with its groundbreaking script. Blending horror, satire, and social commentary, the film follows Chris Washington as he visits his girlfriend's family estate, where dark secrets lurk beneath the surface.
Peele's script brilliantly explored racial tension, marking Peele's successful transition into the horror genre and winning him an Oscar for Best Original Screenplay.
2. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Charlie Kaufman's exploration of memory and love in Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet's cult classic is a masterpiece of emotional storytelling. The film follows Joel and Clementine, who wipe each other from their memories after a relationship ends.
Kaufman's script, which explores the complexities of human emotions and relationships, won her the well-deserved Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.
3. The Social Network (2010)
Aaron Sorkin's sharp script for The Social Network, directed by iconic David Fincher, explores the creation of Facebook and the legal battles that followed. Based on Ben Mezrich's book, the film captures the friendships, betrayals and complex dynamics of its characters, led by Mark Zuckerberg.
Sorkin's witty dialogue and exploration of power dynamics won him an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.
4. Parasite (2019)
Bong Joon-ho took the world by storm with his tale of class discrimination and imposter syndrome. Originally conceived as a stage play, the Oscar-winning South Korean thriller follows the impoverished Kim family as they infiltrate the wealthy Park family's life.
Bong's original vision contributed to the success of the film and its recognition as one of the most outstanding screenplays of the century.
5. No Country for Old Men (2007)
Based on the novel by Cormac McCarthy, the Coen brothers' script for No Country for Old Men depicts the desolate and merciless quest of a hunter and his prey.
The film's minimal dialogue, no-soundtrack policy, and brilliant performances by its cast, including Javier Bardem and Josh Brolin, led to the film's success, winning 76 awards and cementing its status as one of the century's greatest screenplays.
6. Moonlight (2016)
Barry Jenkins' three-act screenplay, based on Tarell Alvin McCraney's stage play, offers an intimate exploration of Chiron through three crucial stages of his life and captures the challenges he faces as he grapples with his own sense of self in a world that often misunderstands him.
Solidifying its place as one of the best pictures of the century, the film won Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay at the Academy Awards.
7. There Will Be Blood (2007)
Based on Upton Sinclair's Oil!, Paul Thomas Anderson's screenplay for this period drama is a character-driven tour de force, following the ambitious Daniel Plainview as he rises through the oil industry. The film's dialogue and themes of greed, power, and morality earned praise for its storytelling and earned Daniel Day-Lewis an Academy Award statuette for Best Actor.