300 movies you need to see before you die - a list by Lars-Erik Falchby Lars-Erik Falch | created - 17 Jun 2012 | updated - 24 Jan 2017 | Public
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1. The Elephant Man (1980)
PG | 124 min | Biography, Drama
A Victorian surgeon rescues a heavily disfigured man who is mistreated while scraping a living as a side-show freak. Behind his monstrous facade, there is revealed a person of intelligence and sensitivity.
The story of Joseph Merrick, a deformed man in 19th century London. One of my favorite movies.
2. Apocalypse Now (1979)
R | 147 min | Drama, War
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.
Votes: 503,838 | Gross: $83.47M
4. Rear Window (1954)
PG | 112 min | Mystery, Thriller
A wheelchair-bound photographer spies on his neighbours from his apartment window and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder.
Votes: 360,496 | Gross: $36.76M
8. 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: 85,801 | Gross: $8.00M
9. Come Back, Little Sheba (1952)
Approved | 99 min | Drama, Romance
An emotionally remote recovering alcoholic and his dowdy, unambitious wife face a personal crisis when they take in an attractive lodger.
10. Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)
Not Rated | 131 min | Drama
A bitter, aging couple, with the help of alcohol, use a young couple to fuel anguish and emotional pain towards each other.
11. All About Eve (1950)
Not Rated | 138 min | Drama
An ingenue insinuates herself into the company of an established but aging stage actress and her circle of theater friends.
Votes: 95,228 | Gross: $0.01M
13. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939)
Not Rated | 129 min | Comedy, Drama
A naive man is appointed to fill a vacancy in the United States Senate. His plans promptly collide with political corruption, but he doesn't back down.
Votes: 87,086 | Gross: $9.60M
Just see it! You'll feel good for days.
14. The Lion in Winter (1968)
PG | 134 min | Biography, Drama, History
1183 A.D.: King Henry II's three sons all want to inherit the throne, but he won't commit to a choice. They and his wife variously plot to force him.
Votes: 25,185 | Gross: $0.02M
19. A Face in the Crowd (1957)
Not Rated | 126 min | Drama, Music
An Arkansas drifter becomes an overnight media sensation. As he becomes drunk with fame and power, will he ever be exposed as the fraud he has become?
21. Lost Highway (1997)
R | 134 min | Mystery, Thriller
After a bizarre encounter at a party, a jazz saxophonist is framed for the murder of his wife and sent to prison, where he inexplicably morphs into a young mechanic and begins leading a new life.
Votes: 110,204 | Gross: $3.80M
22. Suddenly, Last Summer (1959)
Approved | 114 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
The only son of wealthy widow Violet Venable dies while on vacation with his cousin Catherine. What the girl saw was so horrible that she went insane; now Mrs. Venable wants Catherine lobotomized to cover up the truth.
Votes: 11,551 | Gross: $13.90M
23. Blue Velvet (1986)
R | 120 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.
Votes: 150,599 | Gross: $8.55M
24. You Can't Take It with You (1938)
Not Rated | 126 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A man from a family of rich snobs becomes engaged to a woman from a good-natured but decidedly eccentric family.
Pure magic and beauty.
25. All or Nothing (2002)
R | 128 min | Drama
In a poor working class London home Penny's love for her partner, taxi-driver Phil, has run dry, but when an unexpected tragedy occurs, they and their local community are brought together, and they rediscover their love.
Votes: 8,754 | Gross: $0.12M
26. Secrets & Lies (1996)
R | 136 min | Drama
A successful black woman discovers that her birth mother is a underprivileged white woman, but the woman denies it. As emotions run high, everyone's secrets are exposed.
Votes: 31,557 | Gross: $13.42M
27. Manhattan (1979)
R | 96 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
The life of a divorced television writer dating a teenage girl is further complicated when he falls in love with his best friend's mistress.
Votes: 115,463 | Gross: $45.70M
28. Notes on a Scandal (2006)
R | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Romance
A veteran high school teacher befriends a younger art teacher, who is having an affair with one of her 15-year-old students. However, her intentions with this new "friend" also go well beyond platonic friendship.
Votes: 68,264 | Gross: $17.51M
29. Miller's Crossing (1990)
R | 115 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
Tom Regan, an advisor to a Prohibition-era crime boss, tries to keep the peace between warring mobs but gets caught in divided loyalties.
Votes: 112,188 | Gross: $5.08M
31. Last Exit to Brooklyn (1989)
R | 102 min | Drama
Set in Brooklyn during the 1950s against a backdrop of union corruption and violence. A prostitute falls in love with one of her customers. Also a disturbed man discovers that he is homosexual.
Votes: 4,949 | Gross: $1.73M
33. Brutti, sporchi e cattivi (1976)
115 min | Comedy, Drama
Four generations of a family live crowded together in a cardboard shantytown shack in the squalor of inner-city Rome. They plan to murder each other with poisoned dinners, arson, etc. The ... See full summary »
Votes: 6,206 | Gross: $0.01M
34. Luna (1979)
R | 142 min | Drama
While touring in Italy, a recently-widowed American opera singer has an incestuous relationship with her 15-year-old son to help him overcome his heroin addiction.
36. Fargo (1996)
R | 98 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
Jerry Lundegaard's inept crime falls apart due to his and his henchmen's bungling and the persistent police work of the quite pregnant Marge Gunderson.
Votes: 515,641 | Gross: $24.61M
39. The Maltese Falcon (1941)
Not Rated | 100 min | Film-Noir, Mystery
A private detective takes on a case that involves him with three eccentric criminals, a gorgeous liar, and their quest for a priceless statuette.
40. The Last Metro (1980)
PG | 131 min | Drama, Romance, War
In occupied Paris, an actress married to a Jewish theater owner must keep him hidden from the Nazis while doing both of their jobs.
42. Mamma Roma (1962)
Not Rated | 110 min | Drama
After many years working in the streets of Roma, the middle-age whore Mamma Roma (Anna Magnani) saves money to buy an upper class apartment, a fruit stand and retires from the prostitution.... See full summary »
43. Melinda and Melinda (2004)
PG-13 | 99 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
Two alternating stories, one comedy and the other tragedy, about Melinda's attempts to straighten out her life.
Votes: 28,819 | Gross: $3.83M
44. The Apartment (1960)
Not Rated | 125 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
A man tries to rise in his company by letting its executives use his apartment for trysts, but complications and a romance of his own ensue.
Votes: 126,507 | Gross: $18.60M
45. The Godfather: Part II (1974)
R | 202 min | Crime, Drama
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.
Votes: 904,243 | Gross: $57.30M
46. Pulp Fiction (1994)
R | 154 min | Crime, Drama
The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.
Votes: 1,497,479 | Gross: $107.93M
47. Reservoir Dogs (1992)
R | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
After a simple jewelry heist goes terribly wrong, the surviving criminals begin to suspect that one of them is a police informant.
Votes: 756,134 | Gross: $2.83M
51. 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, while attempting to liberate a twelve-year-old prostitute.
Votes: 579,620 | Gross: $28.26M
52. The Shining (1980)
R | 146 min | Drama, Horror
A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.
Votes: 702,550 | Gross: $44.02M
54. Cinema Paradiso (1988)
R | 155 min | Drama
A filmmaker recalls his childhood when falling in love with the pictures at the cinema of his home village and forms a deep friendship with the cinema's projectionist.
Votes: 177,888 | Gross: $11.99M
55. Once Upon a Time in America (1984)
R | 229 min | Crime, Drama
A former Prohibition-era Jewish gangster returns to the Lower East Side of Manhattan over thirty years later, where he once again must confront the ghosts and regrets of his old life.
Votes: 250,945 | Gross: $5.32M
56. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968)
PG-13 | 164 min | Western
A mysterious stranger with a harmonica joins forces with a notorious desperado to protect a beautiful widow from a ruthless assassin working for the railroad.
Votes: 246,346 | Gross: $5.32M
57. The Twelve Chairs (1970)
GP | 94 min | Comedy
In 1920s Soviet Russia, a fallen aristocrat, a priest and a con artist search for a treasure of jewels hidden inside one of twelve dining chairs, lost during the revolution.
60. Midnight in Paris (2011)
PG-13 | 94 min | Comedy, Fantasy, Romance
While on a trip to Paris with his fiancée's family, a nostalgic screenwriter finds himself mysteriously going back to the 1920s everyday at midnight.
Votes: 335,671 | Gross: $56.82M
61. Match Point (2005)
R | 124 min | Drama, Romance, Thriller
At a turning point in his life, a former tennis pro falls for an actress who happens to be dating his friend and soon-to-be brother-in-law.
Votes: 182,401 | Gross: $23.09M
62. Hannah and Her Sisters (1986)
PG-13 | 107 min | Comedy, Drama
Between two Thanksgivings two years apart, Hannah's husband falls in love with her sister Lee, while her hypochondriac ex-husband rekindles his relationship with her sister Holly.
Votes: 58,276 | Gross: $40.08M
63. Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989)
PG-13 | 104 min | Comedy, Drama
An ophthalmologist's mistress threatens to reveal their affair to his wife while a married documentary filmmaker is infatuated with another woman.
Votes: 47,302 | Gross: $18.25M
65. Auch Zwerge haben klein angefangen (1970)
Not Rated | 96 min | Comedy, Drama
The inhabitants of an institution in a remote country rebel against their keepers. Their acts of rebellion are by turns humorous, boring and alarming. An allegory on the problematic nature ... See full summary »
66. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968)
G | 149 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi
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.
Votes: 489,082 | Gross: $56.95M
67. A Clockwork Orange (1971)
R | 136 min | Crime, Drama, Sci-Fi
In the future, a sadistic gang leader is imprisoned and volunteers for a conduct-aversion experiment, but it doesn't go as planned.
68. Quiz Show (1994)
PG-13 | 133 min | Biography, Drama, History
A young lawyer, Richard Goodwin, investigates a potentially fixed game show. Charles Van Doren, a big time show winner, is under Goodwin's investigation.
Votes: 57,994 | Gross: $24.82M
69. Ordinary People (1980)
R | 124 min | Drama
The accidental death of the older son of an affluent family deeply strains the relationships among the bitter mother, the good-natured father, and the guilt-ridden younger son.
Votes: 39,092 | Gross: $54.80M
70. The King of Comedy (1982)
PG | 109 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
Aspiring comic Rupert Pupkin attempts to achieve success in show business by stalking his idol, a late night talk-show host who craves his own privacy.
Votes: 61,265 | Gross: $2.50M
71. Barton Fink (1991)
R | 116 min | Comedy, Drama, Thriller
A renowned New York playwright is enticed to California to write for the movies and discovers the hellish truth of Hollywood.
Votes: 97,978 | Gross: $6.15M
72. Atonement (2007)
R | 123 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance
Fledgling writer Briony Tallis, as a thirteen-year-old, irrevocably changes the course of several lives when she accuses her older sister's lover of a crime he did not commit.
Votes: 213,103 | Gross: $50.93M
74. Amadeus (1984)
R | 160 min | Biography, Drama, History
Votes: 307,675 | Gross: $51.97M
75. Mysterious Skin (2004)
Unrated | 105 min | Drama, Mystery
A teenage hustler and a young man obsessed with alien abductions cross paths, together discovering a horrible, liberating truth.
Votes: 60,526 | Gross: $0.70M
76. The Killers (1946)
Not Rated | 103 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir
Hit men kill an unresisting victim, and investigator Reardon uncovers his past involvement with beautiful, deadly Kitty Collins.
80. Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (2007)
R | 117 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
When two brothers organize the robbery of their parent's jewelry store the job goes horribly wrong, triggering a series of events that sends them, their father and one brother's wife hurtling towards a shattering climax.
Votes: 86,857 | Gross: $7.08M
81. My Own Private Idaho (1991)
R | 104 min | Drama
Two best friends living on the streets of Portland as hustlers embark on a journey of self discovery and find their relationship stumbling along the way.
Votes: 41,129 | Gross: $6.40M
82. The Conversation (1974)
PG | 113 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
A paranoid, secretive surveillance expert has a crisis of conscience when he suspects that a couple, on whom he is spying, will be murdered.
Votes: 82,011 | Gross: $4.42M
83. Rumble Fish (1983)
R | 94 min | Drama
Rusty James, an absent-minded street thug struggles to live up to his legendary older brother's reputation, and longs for the days when gang warfare was going on.
Votes: 26,783 | Gross: $2.49M
86. Come and See (1985)
Not Rated | 142 min | Drama, War
After finding an old rifle, a young boy joins the Soviet resistance movement against ruthless German forces and experiences the horrors of World War II.
87. The Lives of Others (2006)
R | 137 min | Drama, Thriller
In 1984 East Berlin, an agent of the secret police, conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover, finds himself becoming increasingly absorbed by their lives.
Votes: 294,221 | Gross: $11.29M
88. Storie di ordinaria follia (1981)
101 min | Drama
Poet/lecturer Charles Serking awakens from his alcoholic haze long enough to take a bus back to L.A. and plunge into an orgy of drink and sexual depravity.
89. The Man Without a Past (2002)
PG-13 | 97 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance
The second part of Aki Kaurismäki's "Finland" trilogy, the film follows a man who arrives in Helsinki and gets beaten up so severely he develops amnesia. Unable to remember his name or ... See full summary »
Votes: 19,264 | Gross: $0.92M
91. Life Is Sweet (1990)
R | 103 min | Comedy, Drama
A waitress, her cook husband, & their twin daughters ponder their lives over a few weeks in a working-class suburb north of London.
Votes: 7,154 | Gross: $1.52M
95. The Last Picture Show (1971)
R | 118 min | Drama
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.
Votes: 34,898 | Gross: $29.13M
96. Paper Moon (1973)
PG | 102 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
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.
Votes: 29,111 | Gross: $30.93M