What percentage of the British film viewing public could name 100 British films before 1990?
I know I certainly couldn't under duress.
Perhaps the function of a BFI top one hundred is twofold:
1) To make those WITHOUT a canonical and archival knowledge of film go 'oh yeah i remember that it was quite good'.
2) To make those WITH a canonical and archival knowledge of film go 'you must be joking...thats a farce...but what about...'.
It seems to me these things are constructed somewhat rhetorically. Addressing the broadest spectatorship/readership through the virtues of its content -- very successfully it seems.
Such god awful polls pollute television nowdays. Greatest book, Best action movie, biggest arse...
perhaps that award goes to poor creative consultants having to shift shit like this from channel to channel.