The American Film Institute (AFI) announced its 10 movies of the year yesterday [Dec 16], an annual roster that in the eyes of the jury advances the art of the moving image, enhances America's cultural heritage, inspires audiences and artists and/or makes a mark on American society.

The titles are, in alphabetical order: Before The Devil Knows You're Dead; The Diving Bell And The Butterfly; Into The Wild; Juno; Knocked Up; Michael Clayton; No Country For Old Men; Ratatouille; The Savages; and There Will Be Blood.

Missing from the list were some of the year's highest profile prestige films such as American Gangster, Charlie Wilson's War, Sweeney Todd and The Assassination Of Jesse James.

In order to be eligible, films needed to be 'incontrovertibly American' works of fiction longer than 60 minutes that were released between January 1 2007 and December 31 2007 and played in a commercial theatre for at least five consecutive days in Los Angeles or New York City.

The feature film panel comprised AFI film-maker-in-residence Frank Pierson, David Ansen of Newsweek, AFI Conservatory senior mentor Donn Cambern, Mary Corey from the University Of California, Los Angeles, film-maker Lawrence Kasdan, critic Leonard Maltin, the University Of Southern California's Tara McPherson, film-maker and novelist Diana Ossana, producer David Picker, AFI board of trustees vice chair and chair emeritus Tom Pollock, Time magazine's critic Richard Schickel, film-maker Gary Winick and Hosftra University's Kristal Brent Zook.

AFI will honour the creative ensembles for each selection at a luncheon on January 11, 2008 at the Four Seasons Hotel in Los Angeles.

Luncheon sponsor Hewlett-Packard has created scholarships to the AFI Conservatory for each honouree.