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What's the greatest Oscar-winning movie ever? Critical scores help settle debate

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Posted at 4:27 PM, Feb 11, 2015
and last updated 2015-02-22 18:37:43-05

Every year, without fail, seconds after the Academy Award for best picture is announced, debate over the winner ensues. The voters’ anointing of a movie as the best of the year is rarely uncontested but there have been some best picture winners that nearly everyone agreed with.

The data-driven people at Rotten Tomatoes — the website that uses ratings from the most-respected critics to give movies a normalized score — have compiled a list of all 86 best picture winners in Oscars history, ranking them from worst to first.

The list weighs each critic’s vote equally, using a formula that adjusts a film’s final score based on how many total reviews it received. This system makes sure older films aren’t left in the dust, in favor of recent winners that have likely been reviewed by more publications.

Enough setup, here are the 10 greatest best picture-winning films ever, according to Rotten Tomatoes:

Clint Davis is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @MrClintDavis.