Special Report

50 Best Movies You’ve Never Seen

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Some movies have such wide appeal that they’re nearly universally adored. Films like “Casablanca” and “The Godfather” — considered among the best movies of all time — exemplify the best of the medium. Such admired movies have been widely screened, discussed, and praised since they were originally released.

Other films have similar virtues but are far less well known. In certain cases, they may only appeal to a specific subset of audiences or be too downbeat to excite the masses. Other times, they may have been simply overlooked for reasons such a lack of distribution.

24/7 Tempo has identified the 50 best movies you’ve never seen. These are the top rated films on user-based websites Rotten Tomatoes and Internet Movie Database that have comparatively few total user ratings.

Many of the talented individuals behind these movies have had exceptional careers. Acclaimed directors, including John Huston, Sidney Lumet, and Robert Altman, all make appearances, having directed critically praised movies that never matched the popularity of their other work. This is who won the Oscar for Best Director every year since the Oscars began.

Numerous films included on the list had the cards stacked against them from the very beginning. The 1971 Australian thriller “Wake in Fright” was essentially lost for years until the master negative was found in a trash bin and restored in 2009. Similarly, the low budget 1978 movie “Killer of Sheep” didn’t receive theatrical distribution once completed as the filmmakers didn’t clear the rights for the music used in it. These two films have since obtained wider circulation and, correspondingly, admiration.

Click here to see the 50 best movies you’ve never seen.

To determine the best movies you’ve never seen, 24/7 Tempo created an index based on each film’s Rotten Tomatoes average critic rating, Rotten Tomatoes average audience rating, and Internet Movie Database average user rating. To be considered, each film needed to have between 5,000 and 15,000 IMDb user ratings and 10,000 or fewer Rotten Tomatoes user ratings. Only films released since 1950 with English language dialogue were considered as a proxy for cultural relevance.

We averaged the user ratings from Rotten Tomatoes and IMDb and weighted by the number of votes for each. The combined user rating was then averaged with the Rotten Tomatoes critic rating.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

50. All That Heaven Allows (1955)
> Directed by: Douglas Sirk
> Starring: Jane Wyman, Rock Hudson, Agnes Moorehead
> Genre: Drama, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 7.7/10

This 1955 drama explores the relationship between an older woman and a younger man. “Far From Heaven” director Todd Haynes would draw on the movie in the making of his film, which has about four times as many user ratings online.

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Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

49. Baby Doll (1956)
> Directed by: Elia Kazan
> Starring: Karl Malden, Carroll Baker, Eli Wallach
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.0/10

Based on a play by Tennessee Williams, “Baby Doll” is a sexually charged drama by the director responsible for “On the Waterfront” and “A Streetcar Named Desire.” It was nominated for four Academy Awards, but failed to win any.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

48. Hope and Glory (1987)
> Directed by: John Boorman
> Starring: Sarah Miles, David Hayman, Sebastian Rice-Edwards
> Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 8.3/10

This movie, about the experiences of a 9-year old English boy during World War II, was written and directed by John Boorman. The film was a critical success upon release and received five Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture and Best Director.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists Pictures

47. Richard III (1995)
> Directed by: Richard Loncraine
> Starring: Ian McKellen, Annette Bening, Christopher Bowen
> Genre: Drama, Sci-Fi, War
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

This Shakespeare adaptation imagines a fascist England in the 1930s. The film was nominated for two Academy Awards, yet only grossed $2.7 million at the domestic box office.

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Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

46. The Swimmer (1968)
> Directed by: Frank Perry, Sydney Pollack
> Starring: Burt Lancaster, Janet Landgard, Janice Rule
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

Offbeat Burt Lancaster film “The Swimmer” was not a commercial success upon release. It’s been well-received on a critical level, however, with a 100% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Source: Courtesy of Cinerama Releasing Corporation

45. They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? (1969)
> Directed by: Sydney Pollack
> Starring: Jane Fonda, Michael Sarrazin, Susannah York
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.4/10

This downbeat Sydney Pollack-directed drama tells the story of a Depression-era dance contest. Although it was nominated for nine Academy Awards, the movie was and remains far less popular, based on the number of user ratings on IMDb, than Pollack’s films “Tootsie” and “Out of Africa.”

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Source: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

44. Ride the High Country (1962)
> Directed by: Sam Peckinpah
> Starring: Joel McCrea, Randolph Scott, Mariette Hartley
> Genre: Western
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

Director Sam Peckinpah’s story is about former lawmen, played by Joel McCrea and Randolph Scott, tasked with escorting a shipment of gold from a mining camp in the Sierras and the tension that develops between them. There is some of the trademark Peckinpah violence in the film, but the movie is also remembered for its spectacular visuals.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

43. Lilies of the Field (1963)
> Directed by: Ralph Nelson
> Starring: Sidney Poitier, Lilia Skala, Lisa Mann
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

Sidney Poitier won an Oscar for Best Actor for his role in “Lilies of the Field” — a movie about a traveling worker who helps a group of nuns looking to build a chapel. The film was also nominated for Best Picture but failed to win.

Source: Courtesy of Orion Pictures

42. Over the Edge (1979)
> Directed by: Jonathan Kaplan
> Starring: Matt Dillon, Michael Eric Kramer, Pamela Ludwig
> Genre: Crime, Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

A seminal portrayal of teenage rebellion, 1979’s “Over the Edge” was the film debut of actor Matt Dillon. The movie never received a wide theatrical release and has obtained the status of cult classic.

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Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

41. The Incredible Shrinking Man (1957)
> Directed by: Jack Arnold
> Starring: Grant Williams, Randy Stuart, April Kent
> Genre: Horror, Sci-Fi
> Avg. critic rating: 8.0/10

This 1950s sci-fi flick about — you guessed it — a shrinking man, benefits from its existential themes. While the movie was successful upon release, it’s far less known than some of the other movies from the Universal Monsters series, such as “Creature from the Black Lagoon.”

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

40. Lenny (1974)
> Directed by: Bob Fosse
> Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Valerie Perrine, Jan Miner
> Genre: Biography, Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.0/10

Shot in black and white and nominated for six Academy Awards, the film details the life of controversial comedian Lenny Bruce, whose acerbic stand-up act challenged obscenity laws in the 1950s and 1960s. Critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 95% freshness score.

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Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

39. Becket (1964)
> Directed by: Peter Glenville
> Starring: Richard Burton, Peter O’Toole, John Gielgud
> Genre: Biography, Drama, History
> Avg. critic rating: 7.3/10

Historical drama “Becket” stars famed actors Richard Burton and Peter O’Toole, both of whom were nominated for Best Actor at the Oscars for their work in the film. Following a restoration, the film was re-released in 2007 and grossed under $150,000.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

38. Fat City (1972)
> Directed by: John Huston
> Starring: Stacy Keach, Jeff Bridges, Susan Tyrrell
> Genre: Drama, Sport
> Avg. critic rating: 8.5/10

“Fat City” is director John Huston’s unsparing, unsentimental look at the career fate of two boxers and their seedy world they inhabit. It was one of Huston’s later movies, and Susan Tyrell received an Oscar nomination for Best Actress for her work in the movie. Critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave the gritty film a 100% freshness score, and 85% of audiences liked the movie.

Source: Courtesy of GKIDS

37. The Breadwinner (2017)
> Directed by: Nora Twomey
> Starring: Saara Chaudry, Soma Chhaya, Noorin Gulamgaus
> Genre: Animation, Drama, Family
> Avg. critic rating: 7.9/10

Animated drama “The Breadwinner” has a 95% freshness rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes. The movie — which was executive produced by Angelina Jolie — grossed just over $300,000 at the domestic box office.

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Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

36. The Friends of Eddie Coyle (1973)
> Directed by: Peter Yates
> Starring: Robert Mitchum, Peter Boyle, Richard Jordan
> Genre: Crime, Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.4/10

“The Friends of Eddie Coyle” is a film about an aging bakery truck driver in Boston who is also a small-time gun runner and faces jail time unless he rats out his friends. The title character is played by film noir-star Robert Mitchum, and the movie also features Peter Boyle.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

35. Elmer Gantry (1960)
> Directed by: Richard Brooks
> Starring: Burt Lancaster, Jean Simmons, Arthur Kennedy
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

Director Richard Brooks’ “Elmer Gantry” tells the story of an immoral salesman who teams up with a female preacher. The movie won three Academy Awards and was nominated for two others.

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Source: Courtesy of Sherpix

34. Punishment Park (1971)
> Directed by: Peter Watkins
> Starring: Patrick Boland, Kent Foreman, Carmen Argenziano
> Genre: Drama, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 7.4/10

Shot in a fake documentary style, “Punishment Park” is a drama in which authority figures round up and abuse a group of anti-establishment types in the Vietnam War era. The filmmakers had trouble finding distribution for the provocative movie, and it was also never screened on television. Today it has a 100% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes, however.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

33. A Star Is Born (1954)
> Directed by: George Cukor
> Starring: Judy Garland, James Mason, Jack Carson
> Genre: Drama, Musical, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

Before Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper shared the screen in “A Star Is Born,” there was a 1954 version featuring Judy Garland and James Mason. The movie has a 97% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes with 38 critic reviews, compared with the 2018 remake’s 89% rating with 475 reviews.

Source: Courtesy of HBO Films

32. The Tale (2018)
> Directed by: Jennifer Fox
> Starring: Elizabeth Debicki, Laura Dern, Ellen Burstyn
> Genre: Drama, Mystery, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 9.0/10

Rights to the 2018 film “The Tale” were acquired by HBO Films following its screening at Sundance. which prevented the movie from having a theatrical release. This didn’t stop critics from seeing it and rating it with a 99% freshness Rotten Tomatoes rating.

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Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

31. Night and the City (1950)
> Directed by: Jules Dassin
> Starring: Richard Widmark, Gene Tierney, Googie Withers
> Genre: Crime, Film-Noir, Mystery
> Avg. critic rating: 7.3/10

Film noir “Night and the City” received mixed reviews when it was originally released in the U.S. Audiences reviewing the movie on Rotten Tomatoes have been much kinder, with 90% of the few people rating it on the site giving it a positive rating.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

30. Advise & Consent (1962)
> Directed by: Otto Preminger
> Starring: Franchot Tone, Lew Ayres, Henry Fonda
> Genre: Drama, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

“Advise & Consent” is a gripping political drama based on the best-selling novel of the same name by Allen Drury that features an all-star cast. The film examines the excesses of political partisanship when a dovish candidate (Henry Fonda) is nominated as secretary of state.

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Source: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

29. The Band Wagon (1953)
> Directed by: Vincente Minnelli
> Starring: Fred Astaire, Cyd Charisse, Oscar Levant
> Genre: Comedy, Musical, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 8.4/10

Musical “The Band Wagon” has been certified 100% fresh by critics on Rotten Tomatoes. Lou Lumenick in the New York Post went as far as to say, “Sorry, the beloved ‘Singin’ in the Rain’ isn’t the finest of the legendary MGM musicals. ‘The Band Wagon’ has better music, better dances, better direction, more lavish sets and costumes and a wittier script (by the same writers).”

Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

28. Bigger Than Life (1956)
> Directed by: Nicholas Ray
> Starring: James Mason, Barbara Rush, Walter Matthau
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

Overlooked in its initial release, “Bigger Than Life” is now regarded as one of the best movies of the 1950s. The film is about a genial suburban teacher who becomes addicted to an experimental, life-saving drug that transforms him into a violent man. The strong supporting cast features Barbara Rush and Walter Matthau.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

27. O Lucky Man! (1973)
> Directed by: Lindsay Anderson
> Starring: Malcolm McDowell, Ralph Richardson, Rachel Roberts
> Genre: Comedy, Drama, Fantasy
> Avg. critic rating: 7.6/10

Fantastical comedy “O Lucky Man!” stars a young Malcom McDowell as a coffee salesman. While fewer than 7,000 users have rated the film on IMDb, it’s earned an above average rating of 7.8/10, and an average 7.6/10 from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Source: Courtesy of Sony Pictures Classics

26. The Rider (2017)
> Directed by: Chloé Zhao
> Starring: Brady Jandreau, Mooney, Tim Jandreau
> Genre: Drama, Western
> Avg. critic rating: 8.4/10

Dramatic western “The Rider” has won numerous awards from film festivals across the world and has a 97% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Despite its critical success, the film was only played in 224 theaters at its widest release, according to Box Office Mojo.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

25. Gun Crazy (1950)
> Directed by: Joseph H. Lewis
> Starring: John Dall, Peggy Cummins, Berry Kroeger
> Genre: Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

This film noir is about a husband and wife, both obsessed with guns, who go on a crime spree. Joseph H. Lewis’s direction is noteworthy for its shots of the unfolding events seen from the inside of the getaway car. The edgy film made a bigger impression in France than in the United States, and influenced French New Wave movie directors of the late 1950s and early 1960s.

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Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

24. Pickup on South Street (1953)
> Directed by: Samuel Fuller
> Starring: Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Thelma Ritter
> Genre: Crime, Film-Noir, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

“Pickup on South Street” combines film noir with the red-scare anxiety of the 1950s. Richard Widmark plays a petty crook who steals a pocketbook that holds a microfilm containing classified U.S. secrets. The thief is pursued by both the FBI and communist spies. The film received a 91% freshness rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

23. Seven Days in May (1964)
> Directed by: John Frankenheimer
> Starring: Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Fredric March
> Genre: Drama, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 7.7/10

“Seven Days in May” is yet another underseen film starring Burt Lancaster, who appears along with Kirk Douglas as two military leaders. The movie was nominated for two Academy Awards and currently has a 95% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

22. The Gunfighter (1950)
> Directed by: Henry King
> Starring: Gregory Peck, Helen Westcott, Millard Mitchell
> Genre: Western
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

“The Gunfighter,” a melancholy take on the Western genre, stars Gregory Peck in the title role as a man who is frequently challenged by younger men to gun fights. The idea for the movie arose from a dinner that screenwriter William Bowers had with one-time heavyweight boxing champion Jack Dempsey, who said everyone he met wanted to fight him.

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Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

21. Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (1985)
> Directed by: Paul Schrader
> Starring: Ken Ogata, Masayuki Shionoya, Hiroshi Mikami
> Genre: Biography, Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.6/10

The Rotten Tomatoes Critics Consensus describes “Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters” as “Paul Schrader’s directorial masterpiece.” Despite its critical acclaim, the film about celebrated Japanese writer Yukio Mishima grossed less than $440,000 in North America against an estimated production budget of $5 million.

Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

20. Seconds (1966)
> Directed by: John Frankenheimer
> Starring: Rock Hudson, Frank Campanella, John Randolph
> Genre: Sci-Fi, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 8.2/10

Like “Seven Days in May,” “Seconds” was directed by the prolific John Frankenheimer. The movie originally bombed at the box office but has been critically praised in years since. In 2015, the movie was selected for preservation in the National Film Registry by the United States Library of Congress

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Source: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

19. The Bad and the Beautiful (1952)
> Directed by: Vincente Minnelli
> Starring: Lana Turner, Kirk Douglas, Walter Pidgeon
> Genre: Drama, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 7.9/10

Vincente Minnelli, who made some of the greatest musicals of all time (“An American in Paris” and “Gigi”), shifted genres in this cynical film about a ruthless movie producer (Kirk Douglas) who takes no prisoners on his way up the ranks in Hollywood. The supporting cast includes Barry Sullivan and Dick Powell. Critics on Rotten Tomatoes gave the film a 96% freshness rating.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

18. Imitation of Life (1959)
> Directed by: Douglas Sirk
> Starring: Lana Turner, John Gavin, Sandra Dee
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.7/10

This remake of 1934’s “Imitation of Life” is heavy on melodrama and racial themes. Although it was not embraced by critics upon its original release, it was added to the National Film Registry in 2015.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

17. Lonely Are the Brave (1962)
> Directed by: David Miller
> Starring: Kirk Douglas, Gena Rowlands, Walter Matthau
> Genre: Drama, Western
> Avg. critic rating: 8.4/10

“Lonely Are the Brave,” an iconoclastic Western written by the once-blacklisted writer Dalton Trumbo, stars Kirk Douglas as a cowboy who breaks into a jail to see a friend and is pursued to the Mexican border by the authorities. The film prefigured the anti-hero film sentiment of the later 1960s and dealt with issues such as individual freedom versus authority, sanctuary for illegal immigrants, and the increasing militarization of law-enforcement agencies.

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Source: Courtesy of Allied Artists Pictures

16. The Pawnbroker (1964)
> Directed by: Sidney Lumet
> Starring: Rod Steiger, Geraldine Fitzgerald, Brock Peters
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.1/10

Director Sidney Lumet was famous for depicting characters grappling with moral and emotional torment in films such as “12 Angry Men,” and “The Pawnbroker” is one of his best. The motion picture stars Rod Steiger as a pawn shop owner in Harlem embittered by the loss of his family in the Holocaust and walls himself off from humanity.

Source: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures

15. The Court Jester (1955)
> Directed by: Melvin Frank, Norman Panama
> Starring: Danny Kaye, Glynis Johns, Basil Rathbone
> Genre: Adventure, Comedy, Family
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

The multi-talented Danny Kaye carried this expensive ($4 million budget) burlesque romp that was set in Medieval times. Though it failed at the box office — despite a cast that included Angela Lansbury, Basil Rathbone, and Glynis Johns — it is fondly remembered for its alliterative skit “The pellet with the poison’s in the vessel with the pestle, the chalice with the palace has the brew that’s true.”

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Source: Courtesy of United Artists

14. The Miracle Worker (1962)
> Directed by: Arthur Penn
> Starring: Anne Bancroft, Patty Duke, Victor Jory
> Genre: Biography, Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.0/10

A critics’ favorite, scoring 100% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes, “The Miracle Worker” is the story about Anne Sullivan’s relentless effort to teach the blind and deaf Helen Keller how to communicate. It was originally presented on television, then shifted to Broadway, with Anne Bancroft as Anne Sullivan and Patty Duke as Hellen Keller, roles they would reprise on the big screen. Both actresses won Academy Awards for those roles.

Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

13. 3 Women (1977)
> Directed by: Robert Altman
> Starring: Shelley Duvall, Sissy Spacek, Janice Rule
> Genre: Drama, Mystery, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 8.1/10

Prolific director Robert Altman is perhaps best known for films such as “MASH” (1970) and “Gosford Park” (2001). Among his lesser known works is the eerie and dreamlike “3 Women,” starring Shelley Duvall and Sissy Spacek. The movie was never available on VHS and was re-released 27 years after its theatrical release.

Source: Courtesy of Milestone Film & Video

12. Killer of Sheep (1978)
> Directed by: Charles Burnett
> Starring: Henry G. Sanders, Kaycee Moore, Charles Bracy
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.8/10

“Killer of Sheep” — about the lives of black residents in Los Angeles’ Watts neighborhood during the 1970s — was directed by Charles Burnett and submitted as his film thesis while attending UCLA. Unfortunately for film fans, it did not receive a commercial release for 30 years due to legal complications regarding music used in the film. Despite this, it was added to the National Film Registry in 1990.

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Source: Courtesy of Republic Pictures

11. Johnny Guitar (1954)
> Directed by: Nicholas Ray
> Starring: Joan Crawford, Sterling Hayden, Mercedes McCambridge
> Genre: Drama, Western
> Avg. critic rating: 8.5/10

Nicholas Ray directed this Western, noteworthy for featuring a woman, Joan Crawford, as the dominant character. Crawford plays an imposing saloon owner who stands down any man who challenges her. Sterling Hayden in the titular role is Crawford’s one-time lover.

Source: Courtesy of Cinecom Pictures

10. Matewan (1987)
> Directed by: John Sayles
> Starring: Chris Cooper, James Earl Jones, Mary McDonnell
> Genre: Drama, History
> Avg. critic rating: 8.1/10

John Sayles’ “Matewan” is based on the true story of coal miners who went on strike in Matewan, West Virginia, during the 1920s. While the movie was not a huge financial success upon its release — it grossed just under $1.7 million at the domestic box office — it was nominated for an Academy Award and received positive ratings from 93% of critics and users on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Source: Courtesy of Faces Distribution

9. Opening Night (1977)
> Directed by: John Cassavetes
> Starring: Gena Rowlands, John Cassavetes, Ben Gazzara
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 7.8/10

“Opening Night” portrays the emotional journey of an actress following the death of a fan. Written and directed by independent film pioneer John Cassavetes, the movie has been given positive reviews by 96% of critics and 91% of audiences on Rotten Tomatoes.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

8. Wake in Fright (1971)
> Directed by: Ted Kotcheff
> Starring: Donald Pleasence, Gary Bond, Chips Rafferty
> Genre: Drama, Thriller
> Avg. critic rating: 8.7/10

This film about the darker side of Australia floated in obscurity for years — the movie’s negative was lost following a successful screening at the Cannes Film Festival. The print was rediscovered years later and restored in 2009. It’s since amassed a 100% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

Source: Courtesy of Columbia Pictures

7. A Raisin in the Sun (1961)
> Directed by: Daniel Petrie
> Starring: Sidney Poitier, Claudia McNeil, Ruby Dee
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 8.5/10

“A Raisin in the Sun,” based on a play by Lorraine Hansberry that debuted on Broadway in 1959, looks at the life of an African American family living on the South Side of Chicago in the 1950s and struggles with poverty and racism.

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Source: Courtesy of United Film Distribution Company

6. Lion of the Desert (1980)
> Directed by: Moustapha Akkad
> Starring: Anthony Quinn, Oliver Reed, Rod Steiger
> Genre: Biography, Drama, History
> Avg. critic rating: 7.3/10

Anthony Quinn, who played an Arab freedom fighter in “Lawrence of Arabia,” returns to the desert in this film about Libyan leader Omar Mukhtar, who led Libyan forces against invading Italian troops beginning in 1929. Libya’s former dictator Muammar Gaddafi bankrolled the film that featured Oliver Reed as an Italian general and Rod Steiger as Italian dictator Benito Mussolini.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

5. Auntie Mame (1958)
> Directed by: Morton DaCosta
> Starring: Rosalind Russell, Forrest Tucker, Coral Browne
> Genre: Comedy, Drama, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 8.0/10

Rosalind Russell plays the title role in “Auntie Mame.” She was nominated for an Academy Award as the free-spirited woman who takes in her nephew after his father dies and encourages him to seek adventure and experience life.

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Source: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

4. A Patch of Blue (1965)
> Directed by: Guy Green
> Starring: Sidney Poitier, Shelley Winters, Elizabeth Hartman
> Genre: Drama, Romance
> Avg. critic rating: 8.3/10

“A Patch of Blue” is about a black man and a blind white teenage girl who fall in love. It has a 100% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes — with only six critic ratings — and an exceptional 8.0 out of 10 user rating on IMDb, with fewer than 6,500 users contributing.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

3. A Face in the Crowd (1957)
> Directed by: Elia Kazan
> Starring: Andy Griffith, Patricia Neal, Anthony Franciosa
> Genre: Drama, Music
> Avg. critic rating: 7.9/10

Elia Kazan’s “A Face in the Crowd” tells the story of a country music singer’s rise to fame and beyond. The film was not a financial success when it first came out, but it was added to the National Film Registry in 2008.

Source: Courtesy of United Artists

2. The Train (1964)
> Directed by: John Frankenheimer, Arthur Penn
> Starring: Burt Lancaster, Paul Scofield, Jeanne Moreau
> Genre: Thriller, War
> Avg. critic rating: 9.0/10

“The Train” is the third film to appear on this list directed by John Frankenheimer — the others being “Seven Days in May” and “Seconds.” The movie grossed $6.8 million at the domestic box office on a reported $5.8 million budget. It currently holds a 100% freshness rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

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Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

1. Days of Wine and Roses (1962)
> Directed by: Blake Edwards
> Starring: Jack Lemmon, Lee Remick, Charles Bickford
> Genre: Drama
> Avg. critic rating: 9.0/10

Blake Edwards, known for lighter cinematic fare such as the Pink Panther movies, dealt with a more sober subject in “Days of Wine and Roses.” Jack Lemmon plays an alcoholic who marries a woman (Lee Remick) whom he gets addicted to alcohol. The film was nominated for five Academy Awards and won for Best Music, Original Song. The movie received a 100% freshness score from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

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