The Best Narrative Films I've Seen

In no specific order.
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1.
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
With a plan to exact revenge on a mythical shark that killed his partner, oceanographer Steve Zissou rallies a crew that includes his estranged wife, a journalist, and a man who may or may not be his son. (119 mins.)
Director: Wes Anderson
 
2.
Drugstore Cowboy (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A pharmacy-robbing dope fiend and his crew pop pills and evade the law. (102 mins.)
 
3.
Planet of the Apes (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
An astronaut crew crash-lands on a planet in the distant future where intelligent talking apes are the dominant species, and humans are the oppressed and enslaved. (112 mins.)
 
4.
2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Humanity finds a mysterious, obviously artificial object buried beneath the Lunar surface and, with the intelligent computer H.A.L. 9000, sets off on a quest. (149 mins.)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
 
5.
Rushmore (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
The extracurricular king of Rushmore preparatory school is put on academic probation. (93 mins.)
Director: Wes Anderson
 
6.
No Country for Old Men (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon a drug deal gone wrong and more than two million dollars in cash near the Rio Grande. (122 mins.)
 
7.
Diamonds Are Forever (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
A diamond smuggling investigation leads James Bond to Las Vegas, where he uncovers an evil plot involving a rich business tycoon. (120 mins.)
Director: Guy Hamilton
 
8.
Fantastic Planet (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
This futuristic story takes place on a faraway planet where blue giants rule, and oppressed humanoids rebel against the machine-like leaders. (72 mins.)
Director: René Laloux
 
9.
After Hours (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
An ordinary word processor has the worst night of his life after he agrees to visit a girl in Soho whom he met that evening at a coffee shop. (97 mins.)
Director: Martin Scorsese
 
10.
The Departed (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
An undercover cop and a mole in the police attempt to identify each other while infiltrating an Irish gang in South Boston. (151 mins.)
Director: Martin Scorsese
 
11.
Boogie Nights (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
The story of a young man's adventures in the Californian pornography industry of the late 1970s and early 1980s. (155 mins.)
 
12.
Moon (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Astronaut Sam Bell has a quintessentially personal encounter toward the end of his three-year stint on the Moon, where he, working alongside his computer, GERTY, sends back to Earth parcels of a resource that has helped diminish our planet's power problems. (97 mins.)
Director: Duncan Jones
 
13.
Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
An urbane fox cannot resist returning to his farm raiding ways and then must help his community survive the farmers' retaliation. (87 mins.)
Director: Wes Anderson
 
14.
Citizen Kane (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
Following the death of a publishing tycoon, news reporters scramble to discover the meaning of his final utterance. (119 mins.)
Director: Orson Welles
 
15.
Barry Lyndon (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
An Irish rogue wins the heart of a rich widow and assumes her dead husband's aristocratic position in 18th-century England. (184 mins.)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
 
16.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
When their relationship turns sour, a couple undergoes a procedure to have each other erased from their memories. But it is only through the process of loss that they discover what they had to begin with. (108 mins.)
Director: Michel Gondry
 
17.
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
In future Britain, Alex DeLarge, a charismatic and psycopath delinquent, who likes to practice crimes and ultra-violence with his gang, is jailed and volunteers for an experimental aversion therapy developed by the government in an effort to solve society's crime problem - but not all goes according to plan. (136 mins.)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
 
18.
Blue Valentine (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
The relationship of a contemporary married couple, charting their evolution over a span of years by cross-cutting between time periods. (112 mins.)
 
19.
Punch-Drunk Love (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A psychologically troubled novelty supplier is nudged towards a romance with an English woman, all the while being extorted by a phone-sex line run by a crooked mattress salesman, and purchasing stunning amounts of pudding. (95 mins.)
 
20.
Bottle Rocket (1996)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Three friends plan to pull off a simple robbery and go on the run. (91 mins.)
Director: Wes Anderson
 
21.
¡Three Amigos! (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
Three actors accept an invitation to a Mexican village to perform their onscreen bandit fighter roles, unaware that it is the real thing. (104 mins.)
Director: John Landis
 
22.
The Adventures of Baron Munchausen (1943)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
This lavish, impudent, adult fairy tale takes the viewer from 18th-century Braunschweig to St. Petersburg, Constantinople, Venice, and then to the moon using ingenious special effects, stunning location shooting. (110 mins.)
Director: Josef von Báky
 
23.
Magnolia (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
An epic mosaic of interrelated characters in search of love, forgiveness, and meaning in the San Fernando Valley. (188 mins.)
 
24.
Willow (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A reluctant dwarf must play a critical role in protecting a special baby from an evil queen. (126 mins.)
Director: Ron Howard
 
25.
Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.8/10 X  
After the rebels are overpowered by the Empire on their newly established base, Luke Skywalker begins Jedi training with Master Yoda. His friends accept shelter from a questionable ally as Darth Vader hunts them in a plan to capture Luke. (124 mins.)
Director: Irvin Kershner
 
26.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Four teenage mutant ninja turtles emerge from the shadows to protect New York City from a gang of criminal ninjas. (93 mins.)
Director: Steve Barron
 
27.
Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A botched card game in London triggers four friends, thugs, weed-growers, hard gangsters, loan sharks and debt collectors to collide with each other in a series of unexpected events, all for the sake of weed, cash and two antique shotguns. (107 mins.)
Director: Guy Ritchie
 
28.
The Princess Bride (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
While home sick in bed, a young boy's grandfather reads him a story called The Princess Bride. (98 mins.)
Director: Rob Reiner
 
29.
American Gangster (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
In 1970s America, a detective works to bring down the drug empire of Frank Lucas, a heroin kingpin from Manhattan, who is smuggling the drug into the country from the Far East. (157 mins.)
Director: Ridley Scott
 
30.
Beginners (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A young man is rocked by two announcements from his elderly father: that he has terminal cancer, and that he has a young male lover. (105 mins.)
Director: Mike Mills
 
31.
There Will Be Blood (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A story of family, religion, hatred, oil and madness, focusing on a turn-of-the-century prospector in the early days of the business. (158 mins.)
 
32.
The Tree of Life (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
The story of a family in Waco, Texas in 1956. The eldest son witnesses the loss of innocence and struggles with his parents' conflicting teachings. (139 mins.)
Director: Terrence Malick
 
33.
The 400 Blows (1959)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Moving story of a young boy who, left without attention, delves into a life of petty crime. (99 mins.)
 
34.
The Trial (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
An unassuming office worker is arrested and stands trial, but he is never made aware of his charges. (119 mins.)
Director: Orson Welles
 
35.
Labyrinth (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A 16-year old girl is given 13 hours to solve a labyrinth and rescue her baby brother when her wish for him to be taken away is granted by the Goblin King. (101 mins.)
Director: Jim Henson
 
36.
Taxi Driver (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
A mentally unstable Vietnam War veteran works as a night-time taxi driver in New York City where the perceived decadence and sleaze feeds his urge for violent action, while attempting to save a preadolescent prostitute in the process. (113 mins.)
Director: Martin Scorsese
 
37.
Snatch (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Unscrupulous boxing promoters, violent bookmakers, a Russian gangster, incompetent amateur robbers, and supposedly Jewish jewelers fight to track down a priceless stolen diamond. (104 mins.)
Director: Guy Ritchie
 
38.
A River Runs Through It (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
The story about two sons of a stern minister -- one reserved, one rebellious -- growing up in rural Montana while devoted to fly fishing. (123 mins.)
Director: Robert Redford
 
39.
Dog Day Afternoon (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A man robs a bank to pay for his lover's operation; it turns into a hostage situation and a media circus. (125 mins.)
Director: Sidney Lumet
 
40.
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Robert Ford, who's idolized Jesse James since childhood, tries hard to join the reforming gang of the Missouri outlaw, but gradually becomes resentful of the bandit leader. (160 mins.)
Director: Andrew Dominik
 
41.
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.9/10 X  
A bounty hunting scam joins two men in an uneasy alliance against a third in a race to find a fortune in gold buried in a remote cemetery. (161 mins.)
Director: Sergio Leone
 
42.
The Shining (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil and spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future. (146 mins.)
Director: Stanley Kubrick
 
43.
The Squid and the Whale (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Follows two young boys dealing with their parents' divorce in Brooklyn in the 1980s. (81 mins.)
Director: Noah Baumbach
 
44.
A Scanner Darkly (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
An undercover cop in a not-too-distant future becomes involved with a dangerous new drug and begins to lose his own identity as a result. (100 mins.)
 
45.
Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A strange prehistoric beast lurks in the depths of the Amazonian jungle. A group of scientists try to capture the animal and bring it back to civilization for study. (79 mins.)
Director: Jack Arnold
 
46.
The Aviator (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A biopic depicting the early years of legendary director and aviator Howard Hughes' career from the late 1920s to the mid-1940s. (170 mins.)
Director: Martin Scorsese
 
47.
Revolutionary Road (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A young couple living in a Connecticut suburb during the mid-1950s struggle to come to terms with their personal problems while trying to raise their two children. (119 mins.)
Director: Sam Mendes
 
48.
Brazil (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
A bureaucrat in a retro-future world tries to correct an administrative error and himself becomes an enemy of the state. (132 mins.)
Director: Terry Gilliam
 
49.
Being John Malkovich (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A puppeteer discovers a portal that leads literally into the head of movie star John Malkovich. (112 mins.)
Director: Spike Jonze
 
50.
Breathless (1960)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
A small-time thief steals a car and impulsively murders a motorcycle policeman. Wanted by the authorities, he reunites with a hip American journalism student and attempts to persuade her to run away with him to Italy. (90 mins.)
Director: Jean-Luc Godard
 
51.
I'm Still Here (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
Documenting Joaquin Phoenix's transition from the acting world to a career as an aspiring rapper. (108 mins.)
Director: Casey Affleck
 
52.
Apocalypse Now (1979)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
During the Vietnam War, Captain Willard is sent on a dangerous mission into Cambodia to assassinate a renegade colonel who has set himself up as a god among a local tribe. (153 mins.)
Director: Francis Coppola
 
53.
The Wizard of Oz (1939)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Dorothy Gale is swept away from a farm in Kansas to a magical land of Oz in a tornado and embarks on a quest with her new friends to see the Wizard who can help her return home in Kansas and help her friends as well. (102 mins.)
Director: Victor Fleming
 
54.
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Charlie receives a golden ticket to a factory, his sweet tooth wants going into the lushing candy, it turns out there's an adventure in everything. (100 mins.)
Director: Mel Stuart
 
55.
Aguirre, the Wrath of God (1972)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.0/10 X  
In the 16th century, the ruthless and insane Don Lope de Aguirre leads a Spanish expedition in search of El Dorado. (95 mins.)
Director: Werner Herzog
 
56.
A Trip to the Moon (1902 Short Film)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
A group of astronomers go on an expedition to the Moon. (13 mins.)
 
57.
The Karate Kid (1984)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A martial arts master agrees to teach karate to a bullied teenager. (126 mins.)
 
58.
Batman: The Movie (1966)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  
The Dynamic Duo faces four supervillains who plan to hold the world for ransom with the help of a secret invention that instantly dehydrates people. (105 mins.)
 
59.
The Trial (1962)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
An unassuming office worker is arrested and stands trial, but he is never made aware of his charges. (119 mins.)
Director: Orson Welles
 
60.
Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance) (2014)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Illustrated upon the progress of his latest Broadway play, a former popular actor's struggle to cope with his current life as a wasted actor is shown. (119 mins.)
 
61.
The Dark Knight (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.0/10 X  
When the menace known as the Joker emerges from his mysterious past, he wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham, the Dark Knight must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice. (152 mins.)
 
62.
Boy (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Set on the east coast of New Zealand in 1984, Boy, an 11-year-old child and devout Michael Jackson fan, gets a chance to know his absentee criminal father, who has returned to find a bag of money he buried years ago. (87 mins.)
Director: Taika Waititi
 
63.
The Great Mouse Detective (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
Basil, the rodent Sherlock Holmes, investigates the kidnapping of a toy-maker and uncovers its link to his arch-enemy, Professor Ratigan. (74 mins.)
 
64.
A Serious Man (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Larry Gopnik, a Midwestern physics teacher, watches his life unravel over multiple sudden incidents. Though seeking meaning and answers amidst his turmoils, he seems to keep sinking. (106 mins.)
 
65.
Citizen Kane (1941)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
Following the death of a publishing tycoon, news reporters scramble to discover the meaning of his final utterance. (119 mins.)
Director: Orson Welles