Unforgettable (1939-1979)by samberdina | created - 11 Oct 2015 | updated - 8 months ago | Public
Before CGI and out-of-this-world special effects and make-up, the theater arena of the early and mid-20th century often opened the door for modern films with their bold and cerebral subject matter, many deemed before their time.
- Instant Watch Options
- Movies or TV
- IMDb Rating
- In Theaters
- On TV
- Release Year
1. Fahrenheit 451 (1966)
Not Rated | 112 min | Drama, Sci-Fi
In an oppressive future, a fireman whose duty is to destroy all books begins to question his task.
Cerebral, making a powerful statement.
2. Persona (1966)
Not Rated | 83 min | Drama, Thriller
A nurse is put in charge of a mute actress and finds that their personae are melding together.
Another cerebral movie. Unique.
3. Ladybug Ladybug (1963)
Not Rated | 82 min | Drama
Staff and students at a rural school react to a warning of an imminent nuclear attack, not knowing whether it is real or a mistake.
Told before its time.
4. The Boy with Green Hair (1948)
Approved | 82 min | Comedy, Drama, Family
This parable looks at public reaction when the hair of an American war orphan mysteriously turns green.
The subject matter was boldly and clearly presented. Timely for any era, but especially 1948.
5. The Bad Seed (1956)
Approved | 129 min | Drama, Horror, Thriller
A housewife suspects that her seemingly perfect eight-year-old daughter is a heartless killer.
Character development was very important and the actors stepped up to plate. Excellent film.
6. The Poseidon Adventure (1972)
PG | 117 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
Nine people explore a cruise ship at sea in a manner that turns their whole lives upside down.
Votes: 41,816 | Gross: $84.56M
One of the greatest adventure movies. Character development/disaster make an interesting mix.
7. The Towering Inferno (1974)
PG | 165 min | Action, Drama, Thriller
At the opening party of a colossal, but poorly constructed, office building, a massive fire breaks out that threatens to destroy the tower and everyone in it.
Votes: 40,643 | Gross: $116.00M
Another one of the best disaster movies that I can watch over and over.
8. Lifeboat (1944)
Not Rated | 97 min | Drama, War
Several survivors of a torpedoed merchant ship in World War II find themselves in the same lifeboat with one of the crew members of the U-boat that sank their ship.
9. The African Queen (1951)
PG | 105 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance
In WWI Africa, a gin-swilling riverboat captain is persuaded by a strait-laced missionary to use his boat to attack an enemy warship.
Votes: 72,787 | Gross: $0.54M
A unique adventure from start to finish.
10. North by Northwest (1959)
Approved | 136 min | Adventure, Mystery, Thriller
A New York City advertising executive goes on the run after being mistaken for a government agent by a group of foreign spies.
Votes: 304,800 | Gross: $13.28M
It's Hitchcock. There's a reason he is still famous.
11. The Birds (1963)
PG-13 | 119 min | Drama, Horror, Mystery
A wealthy San Francisco socialite pursues a potential boyfriend to a small Northern California town that slowly takes a turn for the bizarre when birds of all kinds suddenly begin to attack people.
Votes: 175,077 | Gross: $11.40M
My favorite Hitchcock film. This one is tense and shows that lots of guts are not necessary to prove that someone is dead.
12. Psycho (1960)
R | 109 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller
A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.
Votes: 617,694 | Gross: $32.00M
Earns its fame.
13. Deliverance (1972)
R | 109 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller
Intent on seeing the Cahulawassee River before it's dammed and turned into a lake, outdoor fanatic Lewis Medlock takes his friends on a canoeing trip they'll never forget into the dangerous American back-country.
Votes: 100,704 | Gross: $7.06M
Not just dueling banjos. Plenty of character development.
14. The Deer Hunter (1978)
R | 183 min | Drama, War
An in-depth examination of the ways in which the U.S. Vietnam War impacts and disrupts the lives of people in a small industrial town in Pennsylvania.
Votes: 317,592 | Gross: $48.98M
Before. During. After.
15. Taxi Driver (1976)
R | 114 min | Crime, Drama
A mentally unstable veteran works as a nighttime taxi driver in New York City, where the perceived decadence and sleaze fuels his urge for violent action by attempting to liberate a presidential campaign worker and an underage prostitute.
Votes: 744,062 | Gross: $28.26M
Excellent presentation of a descent.
16. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)
R | 133 min | Drama
A criminal pleads insanity and is admitted to a mental institution, where he rebels against the oppressive nurse and rallies up the scared patients.
Votes: 936,186 | Gross: $112.00M
Every actor made this move a success. It's a classic.
17. Apocalypse Now (1979)
R | 147 min | Drama, Mystery, War
A U.S. Army officer serving in Vietnam is tasked with assassinating a renegade Special Forces Colonel who sees himself as a god.
Votes: 619,015 | Gross: $83.47M
The director was harsh, but the results were unbelievable.
18. Dog Day Afternoon (1975)
R | 125 min | Biography, Crime, Drama
Three amateur bank robbers plan to hold up a bank. A nice simple robbery: Walk in, take the money, and run. Unfortunately, the supposedly uncomplicated heist suddenly becomes a bizarre nightmare as everything that could go wrong does.
Votes: 240,183 | Gross: $50.00M
Everything fit into place. Pacino made this movie what it is.
19. Papillon (1973)
R | 151 min | Biography, Crime, Drama
A man befriends a fellow criminal as the two of them begin serving their sentence on a dreadful prison island, which inspires the man to plot his escape.
Votes: 124,047 | Gross: $53.27M
Every detail and the genius of McQueen and Hoffman made the unacceptable understandable.
20. The Great Escape (1963)
Approved | 172 min | Adventure, Drama, History
Allied prisoners of war plan for several hundred of their number to escape from a German camp during World War II.
Votes: 229,243 | Gross: $12.10M
Not a dull moment. Every actor kept you in the reality of their circumstances.
21. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
PG | 161 min | Adventure, Drama, War
British POWs are forced to build a railway bridge across the river Kwai for their Japanese captors, not knowing that the allied forces are planning to destroy it.
Votes: 207,203 | Gross: $44.91M
I was there, watching the action unfold. Excellent.
22. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
Approved | 129 min | Crime, Drama
Atticus Finch, a lawyer in the Depression-era South, defends a black man against an undeserved rape charge, and his children against prejudice.
The movie doesn't compete with the book. It presents a portion of the story. The details aren't clouded and the sense of things come alive.
23. Gone with the Wind (1939)
Passed | 238 min | Drama, History, Romance
A manipulative woman and a roguish man conduct a turbulent romance during the American Civil War and Reconstruction periods.
Votes: 295,335 | Gross: $198.68M
Over the top and known to the world.
24. The Way We Were (1973)
PG | 118 min | Drama, Romance
Two disparate people have a wonderful romance, but their political views and convictions drive them apart.
You'll like it or not. Solid story.
25. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
PG | 122 min | Drama
Disturbed Blanche DuBois moves in with her sister in New Orleans and is tormented by her brutish brother-in-law while her reality crumbles around her.
Votes: 100,811 | Gross: $8.00M
Let the film take you for a ride.
26. Cool Hand Luke (1967)
GP | 127 min | Crime, Drama
A laid back Southern man is sentenced to two years in a rural prison, but refuses to conform.
Votes: 165,280 | Gross: $16.22M
Paul Newman and a well cast winner.
27. Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (1967)
Approved | 108 min | Comedy, Drama
A couple's attitudes are challenged when their daughter introduces them to her African-American fiancé.
Votes: 40,756 | Gross: $56.70M
Lessons in perfect awkwardness.
28. 12 Angry Men (1957)
Approved | 96 min | Crime, Drama
A jury holdout attempts to prevent a miscarriage of justice by forcing his colleagues to reconsider the evidence.
Votes: 709,253 | Gross: $4.36M
29. And Then There Were None (1945)
Approved | 97 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Seven guests, a newly hired secretary and two staff are gathered at a manor house on an isolated island by an unknown absentee host and are killed off one-by-one. They work together to determine who the killer is before it's too late.
The only thing better is the book.
31. Casablanca (1942)
PG | 102 min | Drama, Romance, War
A cynical expatriate American cafe owner struggles to decide whether or not to help his former lover and her fugitive husband escape the Nazis in French Morocco.
Votes: 531,862 | Gross: $1.02M
32. The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
G | 92 min | Drama, Sci-Fi
An alien lands and tells the people of Earth that they must live peacefully or be destroyed as a danger to other planets.
33. The Andromeda Strain (1971)
G | 131 min | Mystery, Sci-Fi, Thriller
A team of top scientists work feverishly in a secret, state-of-the-art laboratory to discover what has killed the citizens of a small town and learn how this deadly contagion can be stopped.
Votes: 34,304 | Gross: $3.42M
One of my top 5 sci-fi favorites.
34. Rear Window (1954)
PG | 112 min | Mystery, Thriller
A wheelchair-bound photographer spies on his neighbors from his apartment window and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder.
Votes: 453,672 | Gross: $36.76M
Another Hitchcock great.
35. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)
Approved | 228 min | Adventure, Biography, Drama
The story of T.E. Lawrence, the English officer who successfully united and led the diverse, often warring, Arab tribes during World War I in order to fight the Turks.
Votes: 273,438 | Gross: $44.82M
36. The Sound of Music (1965)
G | 172 min | Biography, Drama, Family
A woman leaves an Austrian convent to become a governess to the children of a Naval officer widower.
Votes: 211,207 | Gross: $163.21M
A family movie with substance and historical significance.
37. Jaws (1975)
PG | 124 min | Adventure, Thriller
When a killer shark unleashes chaos on a beach community, it's up to a local sheriff, a marine biologist, and an old seafarer to hunt the beast down.
Votes: 552,260 | Gross: $260.00M
In my opinion, the best creature feature of all time.
38. Suddenly, Last Summer (1959)
Approved | 114 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
A surgeon is assigned the case of a young woman whose aunt wants her lobotomized to cover up a family secret.
Votes: 14,168 | Gross: $13.90M
Ahead of its time.
39. Escape from Alcatraz (1979)
PG | 112 min | Action, Biography, Crime
Alcatraz is the most secure prison of its time. It is believed that no one can ever escape from it, until three daring men make a possible successful attempt at escaping from one of the most infamous prisons in the world.
Votes: 124,591 | Gross: $43.00M
40. A Patch of Blue (1965)
Unrated | 105 min | Drama, Romance
A blind, uneducated white girl is befriended by a black man, who becomes determined to help her escape her impoverished and abusive home life by introducing her to the outside world.
The Best Acting. Raw. Real. Gentle.