Must-See Films - Drama

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1.
50/50 (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Inspired by a true story, a comedy centered on a 27-year-old guy who learns of his cancer diagnosis, and his subsequent struggle to beat the disease. (100 mins.)
Director: Jonathan Levine
 
2.
Donnie Darko (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A troubled teenager is plagued by visions of a man in a large rabbit suit who manipulates him to commit a series of crimes, after he narrowly escapes a bizarre accident. (113 mins.)
Director: Richard Kelly
 
3.
Reign Over Me (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A man who lost his family in the September 11 attack on New York City runs into his old college roommate. Rekindling the friendship is the one thing that appears able to help the man recover from his grief. (124 mins.)
Director: Mike Binder
 
4.
American Beauty (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  
A sexually frustrated suburban father has a mid-life crisis after becoming infatuated with his daughter's best friend. (122 mins.)
Director: Sam Mendes
 
5.
Juno (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Faced with an unplanned pregnancy, an offbeat young woman makes an unusual decision regarding her unborn child. (96 mins.)
Director: Jason Reitman
 
6.
Good Will Hunting (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
Will Hunting, a janitor at M.I.T., has a gift for mathematics, but needs help from a psychologist to find direction in his life. (126 mins.)
Director: Gus Van Sant
 
7.
Gran Torino (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
Disgruntled Korean War veteran Walt Kowalski sets out to reform his neighbor, a Hmong teenager who tried to steal Kowalski's prized possession: a 1972 Gran Torino. (116 mins.)
Director: Clint Eastwood
 
8.
Lars and the Real Girl (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A delusional young man strikes up an unconventional relationship with a doll he finds on the Internet. (106 mins.)
Director: Craig Gillespie
 
9.
American History X (1998)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
A former neo-nazi skinhead tries to prevent his younger brother from going down the same wrong path that he did. (119 mins.)
Director: Tony Kaye
 
10.
Million Dollar Baby (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
A determined woman works with a hardened boxing trainer to become a professional. (132 mins.)
Director: Clint Eastwood
 
11.
It's Kind of a Funny Story (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A clinically depressed teenager gets a new start after he checks himself into an adult psychiatric ward. (101 mins.)
 
12.
Temple Grandin (2010 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
A biopic of Temple Grandin, an autistic woman who has become one of the top scientists in the humane livestock handling industry. (107 mins.)
Director: Mick Jackson
 
13.
The Shawshank Redemption (1994)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.3/10 X  
Two imprisoned men bond over a number of years, finding solace and eventual redemption through acts of common decency. (142 mins.)
Director: Frank Darabont
 
14.
Crash (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
Los Angeles citizens with vastly separate lives collide in interweaving stories of race, loss and redemption. (112 mins.)
Director: Paul Haggis
 
15.
The Road (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
In a dangerous post-apocalyptic world, an ailing father defends his son as they slowly travel to the sea. (111 mins.)
Director: John Hillcoat
 
16.
Requiem for a Dream (2000)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
The drug-induced utopias of four Coney Island people are shattered when their addictions run deep. (102 mins.)
 
17.
The Pianist (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  
A Polish Jewish musician struggles to survive the destruction of the Warsaw ghetto of World War II. (150 mins.)
Director: Roman Polanski
 
18.
A Beautiful Mind (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  
After John Nash, a brilliant but asocial mathematician, accepts secret work in cryptography, his life takes a turn for the nightmarish. (135 mins.)
Director: Ron Howard
 
19.
Stand by Me (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
After the death of a friend, a writer recounts a boyhood journey to find the body of a missing boy. (89 mins.)
Director: Rob Reiner
 
20.
Sunshine Cleaning (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
In order to raise the tuition to send her young son to private school, a mom starts an unusual business -- a biohazard removal/crime scene clean-up service -- with her unreliable sister. (91 mins.)
Director: Christine Jeffs
 
21.
Hotel Rwanda (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Paul Rusesabagina was a hotel manager who housed over a thousand Tutsi refugees during their struggle against the Hutu militia in Rwanda. (121 mins.)
Director: Terry George
 
22.
Little Miss Sunshine (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A family determined to get their young daughter into the finals of a beauty pageant take a cross-country trip in their VW bus. (101 mins.)
 
23.
What Doesn't Kill You (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Two childhood friends from South Boston turn to crime as a way to get by, ultimately causing a strain in their personal lives and their friendship. (100 mins.)
Director: Brian Goodman
 
24.
Doubt (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A Catholic school principal questions a priest's ambiguous relationship with a troubled young student. (104 mins.)
 
25.
Grace Is Gone (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
Upon hearing his wife was killed in the Iraq war, a father takes his two daughters on a road trip. (85 mins.)
 
26.
Flash of Genius (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
Robert Kearns takes on the Detroit automakers who he claims stole his idea for the intermittent windshield wiper. (119 mins.)
Director: Marc Abraham
 
27.
Seven Pounds (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
A man with a fateful secret embarks on an extraordinary journey of redemption by forever changing the lives of seven strangers. (123 mins.)
 
28.
Matchstick Men (2003)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A phobic con artist and his protégé are on the verge of pulling off a lucrative swindle when the former's teenage daughter arrives unexpectedly. (116 mins.)
Director: Ridley Scott
 
29.
Into the Wild (2007)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
After graduating from Emory University, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness. Along the way, Christopher encounters a series of characters that shape his life. (148 mins.)
Director: Sean Penn
 
30.
One Week (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
Chronicles the motorcycle trip of Ben Tyler as he rides from Toronto to Tofino, British Columbia. Ben stops at landmarks that are both iconic and idiosyncratic on his quest to find meaning in his life. (94 mins.)
Director: Michael McGowan