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Ranking All Of Director Mike Leigh’s Movies

“What are Mike Leigh’s Best Movies?” We looked at all of Leigh’s directed filmography and ranked them against one another to answer that very question!

We took all of the movies directed by Mike Leigh and looked at their Rotten Tomato Critic, Rotten Tomato User, Metacritic, Metacritic User, IMDB, and Letterboxd scores, ranking them against one another to see which movies came out on top. The movies are ranked in our list below based on which movies have the highest overall score between all 6 review sites in comparison with all of the other movies by the same director. The process is all very scientific with no flaws at all.

The full ranking chart is also included below the countdown on the bottom of the page.

Happy Viewing!



The Top Film’s Of Mike Leigh



22 ) Who’s Who (1979)

Who's Who (1979)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 21
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 15
  • Letterboxd User Score: 21

Slice-of-life look at class divisions among employees of a brokerage house. Alan, with his portrait of the Queen and love of the peerage; his wife April, who raises cats; youthful and pretentious friends Nigel, Giles, and Anthony, who gather for a wine-soaked dinner party with the chatty and risque Samantha and the mousy Caroline; the plummy Lord and Lady Crouchurst, in a spot of bother needing the help of Francis, a senior partner, to assist with the family’s cash flow. Alan comes home from work to find Mr. Shakespeare doing a photo shoot of one of April’s cats and a wealthy stranger, Miss Hunt, waiting to purchase one. His instincts for sycophantic palaver kick in.



21 ) The Kiss of Death (1977)

The Kiss of Death (1977)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 18
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 21
  • Letterboxd User Score: 15

The Kiss of Death is a 1977 BBC TV film. Mike Leigh directed ‘this whimsical, made-for-television tale about Trevor, an unusually bashful mortician’s assistant’, whose moods and personality really make up the subject of the film. Trevor is an extremely shy undertaker’s assistant. He always tags along with his good friend Ronnie, when he goes to the pub with his girlfriend Sandra. Sandra introduces Trevor to her more forward friend Linda. Linda has a difficult time getting Trevor to go out with her, but she finally gets him to go to a disco; he won’t dance, so Linda dances with Ronnie.



20 ) Peterloo (2018)

Peterloo (2018)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 13
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 12
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 13
  • Metacritic User Score: 6
  • IMDB User Review Score: 22
  • Letterboxd User Score: 22

A drama about the infamous 1819 Manchester massacre, which killed an estimated 18 protesters and injured up to 700.



19 ) Home Sweet Home (1982)

Home Sweet Home (1982)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 20
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 11
  • Letterboxd User Score: 13

Three postal workers and their dysfunctional families interact over cups of tea and Sunday dinner.



18 ) Hard Labour (1973)

Hard Labour (1973)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 16
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 11
  • Letterboxd User Score: 15

A quiet and put-upon house cleaner breaks her silence.



17 ) Four Days in July (1985)

Four Days in July (1985)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 4
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 18
  • Letterboxd User Score: 15

Two couples, one Catholic, one Protestant, exist on two sides of the chasm that is everyday life in Northern Ireland. Both women are expecting babies, both couples tell offbeat stories, both couples get by with what little they have. Yet Mike Leigh allows his actors to show not how much but how little these two couple have in common. “Four Days in July” is wonderful yet scathing look at the turmoil that has engulfed Northern Ireland for generations.



16 ) Career Girls (1997)

Career Girls (1997)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 9
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 10
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 10
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 15
  • Letterboxd User Score: 20

Two young women reunite and rekindle their friendship after having said goodbye at their college graduation, six years earlier.



14 ) Meantime (1983)

Meantime (1983)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 12
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 7
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 14
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 15
  • Letterboxd User Score: 13

A working-class family in London’s East End is struggling to stay afloat during the recession under Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s premiership. Only the mother Mavis is working; father Frank and the couple’s two sons Colin, a timid, chronically shy individual and Mark, an outspoken, headstrong young man, are on the dole. This situation is contrasted by the presence of Mavis’s sister Barbara, and her husband John, whose financial and social loftiness appears to be a comfortable facade over the unspoken soreness of a lackluster marriage.



14 ) Bleak Moments (1971)

Bleak Moments (1971)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 14
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 12
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 6
  • Letterboxd User Score: 15

Moments from the uncompromisingly bleak existence of a secretary, her intellectually disabled sister, aloof and uneasy teacher boyfriend, bizarre neighbor and irritating workmate.



13 ) Nuts in May (1976)

Nuts in May (1976)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 22
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 2
  • Letterboxd User Score: 5

A middle-class couple go camping in Dorset, but peace and quiet elude them.



12 ) Grown-Ups (1980)

Grown-Ups (1980)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 13
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 4
  • Letterboxd User Score: 10

Dick and Mandy, a young working class couple, move into a council house in Canterbury, and find Mr. Butcher, one of their former teachers, living next door. Mandy’s unmarried sister, Gloria, is constantly dropping in, and will not take any hints that the couple would prefer to be left alone, until her presence finally goads them to action.



11 ) Mr. Turner (2014)

Mr. Turner (2014)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 2
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 19
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 1
  • Metacritic User Score: 9
  • IMDB User Review Score: 20
  • Letterboxd User Score: 15

Eccentric British painter J.M.W. Turner lives his last 25 years with gusto and secretly becomes involved with a seaside landlady, while his faithful housekeeper bears an unrequited love for him.



9 ) Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

Happy-Go-Lucky (2008)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 4
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 17
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 5
  • Metacritic User Score: 3
  • IMDB User Review Score: 18
  • Letterboxd User Score: 10

A look at a few chapters in the life of Poppy, a cheery, colorful, North London schoolteacher whose optimism tends to exasperate those around her.



9 ) All or Nothing (2002)

All or Nothing (2002)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 11
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 9
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 11
  • Metacritic User Score: 8
  • IMDB User Review Score: 8
  • Letterboxd User Score: 10

Penny works at a supermarket and Phil is a gentle taxi-driver. Penny’s love for Phil has run dry and they lead joyless lives with their two children, Rachel, a cleaner, and Rory, who is unemployed and aggressive.



8 ) Another Year (2010)

Another Year (2010)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 4
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 14
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 9
  • Metacritic User Score: 7
  • IMDB User Review Score: 14
  • Letterboxd User Score: 5

Mike Leigh’s much praised 2010 tragicomical drama. During a year, a very content couple approaching retirement are visited by friends and family less happy with their lives.



7 ) Abigail’s Party (1977)

Abigail's Party (1977)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 14
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 7
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 15
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 1
  • Letterboxd User Score: 3

Beverly Moss invites her new neighbours, Angela and Tony, over for drinks. She has also asked her divorced neighbour Susan, whose fifteen-year-old daughter Abigail is holding a party back in their house. Beverly’s husband Laurence comes home late from work, just before the guests arrive. The gathering starts off in a stiff, insensitive, British-middle-class way as the virtual strangers tentatively gather, until Beverly and Laurence start sniping at each other. As Beverly serves more drinks and the alcohol takes effect, Beverly flirts more and more overtly with Tony, as Laurence sits impotently by.



6 ) Topsy-Turvy (1999)

Topsy-Turvy (1999)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 8
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 10
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 3
  • Metacritic User Score: 4
  • IMDB User Review Score: 11
  • Letterboxd User Score: 5

After their production “Princess Ida” meets with less-than-stunning reviews, the relationship between Gilbert and Sullivan is strained to breaking. Their friends and associates attempt to get the two to work together again, which opens the way to “The Mikado,” one of the duo’s greatest successes.



5 ) High Hopes (1988)

High Hopes (1988)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 1
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 5
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 5
  • Metacritic User Score: 11
  • IMDB User Review Score: 9
  • Letterboxd User Score: 5

Slice-of-life look at a sweet working-class couple in London, Shirley and Cyril, his mother, who’s aging quickly and becoming forgetful, mum’s ghastly upper-middle-class neighbors, and Cyril’s pretentious sister and philandering husband. Shirley wants a baby, but Cyril, who reads Marx and wants the world to be perfect, is reluctant. Cyril’s mum locks herself out and must ask her snooty neighbors for help. Then Cyril’s sister Valerie stages a surprise party for mum’s 70th birthday, a disaster from start to finish. Shirley holds things together, and she and Cyril may put aside her Dutch cap after all.



4 ) Vera Drake (2004)

Vera Drake (2004)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 4
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 6
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 8
  • Metacritic User Score: 4
  • IMDB User Review Score: 6
  • Letterboxd User Score: 5

Abortionist Vera Drake finds her beliefs and practices clash with the mores of 1950s Britain – a conflict that leads to tragedy for her family.



3 ) Life Is Sweet (1990)

Life Is Sweet (1990)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 4
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 3
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 4
  • Metacritic User Score: 9
  • IMDB User Review Score: 9
  • Letterboxd User Score: 3

Just north of London live Wendy, Andy, and their twenty-something twins, Natalie and Nicola. Wendy clerks in a shop, leads aerobics at a primary school, jokes like a vaudevillian, agrees to waitress at a friend’s new restaurant and dotes on Andy, a cook who forever puts off home remodeling projects, and with a drunken friend, buys a broken down lunch wagon. Natalie, with short neat hair and a snappy, droll manner, is a plumber; she has a holiday planned in America, but little else. Last is Nicola, odd man out: a snarl, big glasses, cigarette, mussed hair, jittery fingers, bulimic, jobless, and unhappy. How they interact and play out family conflict and love is the film’s subject.



2 ) Naked (1993)

Naked (1993)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 9
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 1
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 5
  • Metacritic User Score: 1
  • IMDB User Review Score: 4
  • Letterboxd User Score: 1

An unemployed Brit vents his rage on unsuspecting strangers as he embarks on a nocturnal London odyssey.



1 ) Secrets & Lies (1996)

Secrets & Lies (1996)

Review Website Ranks:

  • Rotten Tomatoes Critic: 3
  • Rotten Tomatoes Users: 1
  • Metacritc Critic Score: 2
  • Metacritic User Score: 2
  • IMDB User Review Score: 2
  • Letterboxd User Score: 1

A middle-aged London factory worker is shocked when the mixed-race daughter she gave up at birth decides to track her down. At first she denies she is her mother. All family members become emotional, as everyone’s secrets are exposed.



Mike Leigh’s Best Movies



Mike Leigh Review Website Filmography Rankings

FilmRT CriticRT UserMC CriticMC UserIMDBLetterboxdOveral Rank
Secrets & Lies (1996) 3 1 2 2 2 1 1
Naked (1993) 9 1 5 1 4 1 2
Life Is Sweet (1990) 4 3 4 9 9 3 3
Vera Drake (2004) 4 6 8 4 6 5 4
High Hopes (1988) 1 5 5 11 9 5 5
Topsy-Turvy (1999) 8 10 3 4 11 5 6
Abigail’s Party (1977) 14 7 15 11 1 3 7
Another Year (2010) 4 14 9 7 14 5 8
Happy-Go-Lucky (2008) 4 17 5 3 18 10 9
All or Nothing (2002) 11 9 11 8 8 10 9
Mr. Turner (2014) 2 19 1 9 20 15 11
Grown-Ups (1980) 14 13 15 11 4 10 12
Nuts in May (1976) 14 22 15 11 2 5 13
Meantime (1983) 12 7 14 11 15 13 14
Bleak Moments (1971) 14 14 12 11 6 15 14
Career Girls (1997) 9 10 10 11 15 20 16
Four Days in July (1985) 14 4 15 11 18 15 17
Hard Labour (1973) 14 16 15 11 11 15 18
Home Sweet Home (1982) 14 20 15 11 11 13 19
Peterloo (2018) 13 12 13 6 22 22 20
The Kiss of Death (1977) 14 18 15 11 21 15 21
Who’s Who (1979) 14 21 15 11 15 21 22

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