Last Updated on 1 December 2023

I searched the Internet for lists of the best or most popular John Carpenter movies of all time. These were full movies that he directed. Criteria included them being ranked, not just listed, and generally created by groups, whether teams or committees or based on general public voting (like

I was able to find 41 lists. I took the 41 lists and added all their content into a spreadsheet, noting the rank of every movie. I experimented with different formulas, trying to balance the value of being ranked high on any list and being included on the most lists. I ended up averaging the rankings each movie got and dividing that average by a factor of the number of lists it was on. The lowest score meant a high ranking average on many lists. The complete spreadsheet is attached at the bottom.

The movies that were on the most lists (out of 41) were:

  • The Thing (1982) – 41 lists
  • Halloween (1978) – 41 lists
  • They Live (1988) – 39 lists
  • Big Trouble in Little China (1986) – 39 lists
  • Escape From New York (1981) – 38 lists
  • In the Mouth of Madness (1995) – 38 lists