The 20 best movies of the 1970's

by doc-169 | created - 26 Mar 2012 | updated - 26 Mar 2012 | Public

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1. The Godfather (1972)

R | 175 min | Crime, Drama

9.2
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100 Metascore

The aging patriarch of an organized crime dynasty transfers control of his clandestine empire to his reluctant son.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Diane Keaton

Votes: 1,289,099 | Gross: $134.97M

2. The Godfather: Part II (1974)

R | 202 min | Crime, Drama

9.0
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85 Metascore

The early life and career of Vito Corleone in 1920s New York City is portrayed, while his son, Michael, expands and tightens his grip on the family crime syndicate.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton

Votes: 889,356 | Gross: $57.30M

3. Hair (1979)

PG | 121 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
68 Metascore

Claude Bukowski leaves the family ranch in Oklahoma for New York where he is rapidly embraced into the hippie group of youngsters led by Berger, yet he's already been drafted. He soon falls in love with Sheila Franklin, a rich girl but still a rebel inside.

Director: Milos Forman | Stars: John Savage, Treat Williams, Beverly D'Angelo, Annie Golden

Votes: 29,458 | Gross: $15.28M

4. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)

R | 133 min | Drama

8.7
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80 Metascore

A criminal pleads insanity after getting into trouble again and once in the mental institution rebels against the oppressive nurse and rallies up the scared patients.

Director: Milos Forman | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Michael Berryman, Peter Brocco

Votes: 753,665 | Gross: $112.00M

5. Alien (1979)

R | 117 min | Horror, Sci-Fi

8.5
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83 Metascore

After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, John Hurt, Veronica Cartwright

Votes: 642,994 | Gross: $78.90M

6. American Graffiti (1973)

PG | 110 min | Comedy, Drama

7.5
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97 Metascore

A couple of high school grads spend one final night cruising the strip with their buddies before they go off to college.

Director: George Lucas | Stars: Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat, Charles Martin Smith

Votes: 68,949 | Gross: $115.00M

7. Barry Lyndon (1975)

PG | 185 min | Adventure, Drama, History

8.1
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An Irish rogue wins the heart of a rich widow and assumes her dead husband's aristocratic position in 18th-century England.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Ryan O'Neal, Marisa Berenson, Patrick Magee, Hardy Krüger

Votes: 114,671

8. Chinatown (1974)

R | 130 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

8.2
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86 Metascore

A private detective hired to expose an adulterer finds himself caught up in a web of deceit, corruption, and murder.

Director: Roman Polanski | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston, Perry Lopez

Votes: 240,497 | Gross: $29.20M

9. Deliverance (1972)

R | 109 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller

7.7
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Intent on seeing the Cahulawassee River before it's turned into one huge lake, outdoor fanatic Lewis Medlock takes his friends on a river-rafting trip they'll never forget into the dangerous American back-country.

Director: John Boorman | Stars: Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ned Beatty, Ronny Cox

Votes: 84,389

10. MASH (1970)

R | 116 min | Comedy, Drama, War

7.6
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79 Metascore

The staff of a Korean War field hospital use humor and high jinks to keep their sanity in the face of the horror of war.

Director: Robert Altman | Stars: Donald Sutherland, Elliott Gould, Tom Skerritt, Sally Kellerman

Votes: 59,694 | Gross: $81.60M

11. The Sting (1973)

PG | 129 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

8.3
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80 Metascore

Two grifters team up to pull off the ultimate con.

Director: George Roy Hill | Stars: Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw, Charles Durning

Votes: 196,164 | Gross: $159.60M

12. All the President's Men (1976)

PG | 138 min | Biography, Drama, History

8.0
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80 Metascore

"The Washington Post" reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein uncover the details of the Watergate scandal that leads to President Richard Nixon's resignation.

Director: Alan J. Pakula | Stars: Dustin Hoffman, Robert Redford, Jack Warden, Martin Balsam

Votes: 82,590 | Gross: $70.60M

13. Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore (1974)

PG | 112 min | Drama, Romance

7.4
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A recently widowed woman is on the road with her precocious young son, determined to make a new life for herself as a singer.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Kris Kristofferson, Mia Bendixsen, Alfred Lutter III

Votes: 17,089 | Gross: $17.60M

14. Paper Moon (1973)

PG | 102 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

8.2
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During the Great Depression, a con man finds himself saddled with a young girl who may or may not be his daughter, and the two forge an unlikely partnership.

Director: Peter Bogdanovich | Stars: Ryan O'Neal, Tatum O'Neal, Madeline Kahn, John Hillerman

Votes: 27,781 | Gross: $30.93M

15. The Last Picture Show (1971)

R | 118 min | Drama

8.1
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In 1951, a group of high schoolers come of age in a bleak, isolated, atrophied West Texas town that is slowly dying, both culturally and economically.

Director: Peter Bogdanovich | Stars: Timothy Bottoms, Jeff Bridges, Cybill Shepherd, Ben Johnson

Votes: 34,539 | Gross: $29.13M

16. The French Connection (1971)

R | 104 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.8
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96 Metascore

A pair of NYC cops in the Narcotics Bureau stumble onto a drug smuggling job with a French connection.

Director: William Friedkin | Stars: Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, Fernando Rey, Tony Lo Bianco

Votes: 91,013

17. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

R | 136 min | Crime, Drama, Sci-Fi

8.3
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78 Metascore

In the future, a sadistic gang leader is imprisoned and volunteers for a conduct-aversion experiment, but it doesn't go as planned.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke

Votes: 623,474

18. Apocalypse Now (1979)

R | 147 min | Drama, War

8.5
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94 Metascore

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.

Director: Francis Ford Coppola | Stars: Martin Sheen, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, Frederic Forrest

Votes: 497,573 | Gross: $83.47M

19. The Exorcist (1973)

R | 122 min | Horror

8.0
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82 Metascore

When a girl is possessed by a mysterious entity, her mother seeks the help of two priests to save her daughter.

Director: William Friedkin | Stars: Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Linda Blair, Lee J. Cobb

Votes: 307,946 | Gross: $232.91M

20. Mean Streets (1973)

R | 112 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.4
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A small-time hood aspires to work his way up the ranks of a local mob.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, David Proval, Amy Robinson

Votes: 76,157 | Gross: $0.03M