Hitchcock film tops film list

Alfred Hitchcock's Vertigo has climbed to the top of the British Film Institute's poll of the greatest films ever made, dislodging Citizen Kane for the first time in 50 years, it was announced on Wednesday.

Some 846 experts were polled for the BFI Sight and Sound magazine's decadal list, and selected the 1958 suspense thriller about a retired police officer with a fear of heights, starring James Stewart and Kim Novak, by 34 votes.

Orson Welles' 1941 Citizen Kane topped the list on the last five occasions but the gap was only five votes during the last poll taken 10 years ago.

Vertigo explores Hitchcock's recurring theme of love's destructive effect and follows a twisting storyline around the skyline of San Francisco.

It is well-known for the director's use of a disorientating simultaneous zoom-in and pull-back of the camera to represent the vertigo suffered by Stewart's lead character, Scotty Ferguson.

The film received mixed reviews on release, similar to the film which it replaced at the top.

Other films to score in the top ten include Tokyo Story (1953), Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968), The Passion of Joan of Arc (1927) and Fellini's 8 ½ (1963).