100 Greatest 1940-1949 Movies

by jordanhores | created - 4 months ago | updated - 3 months ago | Public

List of best films from 1940 to 1949 of USA. Excluding Disney films and films with mixed, negative or panned reception. -Broadway (1942) -Hopalong Cassidy series(1940s)

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1. Abe Lincoln in Illinois (1940)

Approved | 110 min | Biography, Drama, History

Humble Abraham Lincoln gains the respect of his Illinois neighbors, growing in stature and respect until he is elected President in 1860 and departs for Washington.

Director: John Cromwell | Stars: Raymond Massey, Gene Lockhart, Ruth Gordon, Mary Howard

Votes: 1,462

2. All This, and Heaven Too (1940)

Approved | 141 min | Drama, Romance

A duchess' irrational behavior toward the governess of her children triggers tragic events that will change her family's lives forever.

Director: Anatole Litvak | Stars: Bette Davis, Charles Boyer, Jeffrey Lynn, Barbara O'Neil

Votes: 3,782

3. Angels Over Broadway (1940)

Passed | 79 min | Adventure, Comedy, Crime

A cuckolded embezzler on the verge of suicide is helped by a tout, an alcoholic playwright, and a pick-up girl to reimburse the money with a gambling sting.

Directors: Ben Hecht, Lee Garmes | Stars: Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Rita Hayworth, Thomas Mitchell, John Qualen

Votes: 760

4. Arise, My Love (1940)

Passed | 110 min | Comedy, Drama, Romance

A dashing pilot and a vivacious reporter have romantic and dramatic adventures in Europe as World War II begins.

Director: Mitchell Leisen | Stars: Claudette Colbert, Ray Milland, Dennis O'Keefe, Walter Abel

Votes: 613

5. Arizona (1940)

Approved | 125 min | Western

During the 1860s Tucson, a pioneer woman struggles to succeed in the freight and cattle business while at risk at the hands of corrupt and violent local businessmen and rampaging Indians.

Director: Wesley Ruggles | Stars: Jean Arthur, William Holden, Warren William, Porter Hall

Votes: 987

6. The Bank Dick (1940)

Not Rated | 72 min | Comedy

Henpecked Egbert Sousé has comic adventures as a substitute film director and unlikely bank guard.

Director: Edward F. Cline | Stars: W.C. Fields, Cora Witherspoon, Una Merkel, Evelyn Del Rio

Votes: 5,979

7. Black Friday (1940)

Approved | 70 min | Crime, Drama, Horror

Dr. Sovac transplants the brain of a gangster into his professor friend's body to save his life, but there is a side effect that causes a dangerous split personality.

Director: Arthur Lubin | Stars: Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Stanley Ridges, Anne Nagel

Votes: 1,633

8. The Blue Bird (1940)

Approved | 88 min | Drama, Family, Fantasy

Mytyl and her brother Tyltyl, a woodchopper's children, are led by the Fairy Berylune on a magical trip through the past, present, and future to locate the Blue Bird of Happiness.

Director: Walter Lang | Stars: Shirley Temple, Spring Byington, Nigel Bruce, Gale Sondergaard

Votes: 1,302

9. Boom Town (1940)

Passed | 119 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance

Two buddies who rise from fly-by-night wildcatters to oil tycoons over a twenty year period both love the same woman.

Director: Jack Conway | Stars: Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy, Claudette Colbert, Hedy Lamarr

Votes: 2,727 | Gross: $9.17M

10. Brigham Young (1940)

Approved | 114 min | Adventure, Biography, History

In 1844, after the assassination of Mormon leader Joseph Smith by an angry mob in Illinois, the Mormons choose Brigham Young as their new leader and follow him to a new promised land in Utah.

Director: Henry Hathaway | Stars: Tyrone Power, Linda Darnell, Dean Jagger, Brian Donlevy

Votes: 844

11. Broadway Melody of 1940 (1940)

Passed | 102 min | Musical

Johnny Brett and King Shaw are an unsuccessful dance team in New York. A producer discovers Brett as the new partner for Clare Bennett, but Brett, who thinks he is one of the people they lent money to gives him the name of his partner.

Director: Norman Taurog | Stars: Fred Astaire, Eleanor Powell, George Murphy, Frank Morgan

Votes: 1,803

12. Brother Orchid (1940)

Approved | 88 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

When retired racket boss John Sarto tries to reclaim his place and former friends try to kill him, he finds solace in a monastery and reinvents himself as a pious monk.

Director: Lloyd Bacon | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Humphrey Bogart, Ann Sothern, Donald Crisp

Votes: 2,033

13. Calling Philo Vance (1940)

Approved | 62 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

Despite an exclusive contract with the U.S. government, designer Archer Coe's design is being bid on by German, Japanese, and Italian agents - until he's murdered.

Director: William Clemens | Stars: James Stephenson, Margot Stevenson, Henry O'Neill, Edward Brophy

Votes: 209

14. Castle on the Hudson (1940)

Approved | 77 min | Crime, Drama

Mobster Tommy Gordon isn't worried about being sentenced to Sing Sing prison because his political pals have promised him a quick parole. A troublesome prisoner, he finally concedes that ... See full summary »

Director: Anatole Litvak | Stars: John Garfield, Ann Sheridan, Pat O'Brien, Burgess Meredith

Votes: 480

15. Charlie Chan in Panama (1940)

Approved | 67 min | Adventure, Comedy, Crime

Inspector Chan investigates a group of travelers, one of whom is a saboteur.

Director: Norman Foster | Stars: Sidney Toler, Jean Rogers, Lionel Atwill, Mary Nash

Votes: 1,104

16. Charlie Chan at the Wax Museum (1940)

Approved | 63 min | Comedy, Crime, Mystery

An escaped convicted murderer hides out at a New York wax museum where he hopes to get plastic surgery, which will help him revenge himself on Charlie Chan.

Director: Lynn Shores | Stars: Sidney Toler, Victor Sen Yung, C. Henry Gordon, Marc Lawrence

Votes: 1,294

17. Christmas in July (1940)

Passed | 67 min | Comedy, Romance

When the co-workers of an ambitious clerk trick him into thinking he has won $25,000 in a slogan contest, he begins to use the money to fulfill his dreams. What will happen when the ruse is discovered?

Director: Preston Sturges | Stars: Dick Powell, Ellen Drew, Raymond Walburn, Alexander Carr

Votes: 2,745

18. A Chump at Oxford (1939)

Approved | 62 min | Comedy

As a reward for capturing a bank robber, Stan and Ollie get scholarship to Oxford, but are met with resentment by other students.

Director: Alfred J. Goulding | Stars: Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Forrester Harvey, Wilfred Lucas

Votes: 3,006

19. City for Conquest (1940)

Approved | 104 min | Drama, Music, Sport

Danny is a content truck driver, but his girl Peggy shows potential as a dancer and hopes he too can show ambition. Danny acquiesces and pursues boxing to please her, but the two begin to spend more time working than time together.

Directors: Anatole Litvak, Jean Negulesco | Stars: James Cagney, Ann Sheridan, Frank Craven, Donald Crisp

Votes: 1,841

20. Blackout (1940)

Not Rated | 80 min | Adventure, Romance

Early in World War II, Danish sea captain Andersen, delayed in a British port, tangles with German spies.

Director: Michael Powell | Stars: Conrad Veidt, Valerie Hobson, Hay Petrie, Joss Ambler

Votes: 901

21. Convicted Woman (1940)

Approved | 65 min | Action, Crime, Drama

Jobless Betty Andrews, although innocent, is convicted of a department store theft and, despite the best efforts of her lawyer and noted social worker Mary Ellis and a reporter, Jim Brent ... See full summary »

Director: Nick Grinde | Stars: Rochelle Hudson, Frieda Inescort, June Lang, Lola Lane

Votes: 64

22. Dance, Girl, Dance (1940)

Approved | 90 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical

Judy O'Brien is an aspiring ballerina in a dance troupe. Also in the company is Bubbles, a brash mantrap who leaves the struggling troupe for a career in burlesque. When the company ... See full summary »

Directors: Dorothy Arzner, Roy Del Ruth | Stars: Maureen O'Hara, Louis Hayward, Lucille Ball, Virginia Field

Votes: 1,566

23. Dark Command (1940)

Approved | 94 min | Drama, Romance, Western

In Kansas, during the Civil War opposing pro-Union and pro-Confederate camps clash and visiting Texan Bob Seton runs afoul of William Cantrell's Raiders.

Director: Raoul Walsh | Stars: Claire Trevor, John Wayne, Walter Pidgeon, Roy Rogers

Votes: 2,032

24. A Dispatch from Reuters (1940)

Approved | 90 min | Biography, Drama

Starting with a small flock of carrier pigeons, nineteenth-century entrepreneur Julius Reuter turns his small company into Europe's most respected news wire service.

Director: William Dieterle | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Edna Best, Eddie Albert, Albert Bassermann

Votes: 480

25. Doomed to Die (1940)

Approved | 68 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Mr. Wong and a girl reporter investigate a shipping magnate's murder.

Director: William Nigh | Stars: Boris Karloff, Marjorie Reynolds, Grant Withers, William Stelling

Votes: 842

26. Down Argentine Way (1940)

Approved | 89 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical

An American girl on vacation in Argentina falls for a wealthy racehorse owner.

Director: Irving Cummings | Stars: Don Ameche, Betty Grable, Carmen Miranda, Charlotte Greenwood

Votes: 830

27. Dr. Cyclops (1940)

Not Rated | 77 min | Adventure, Drama, Horror

A mad scientist working in the South American jungle miniaturizes his colleagues when he feels his megalomania is threatened.

Director: Ernest B. Schoedsack | Stars: Albert Dekker, Thomas Coley, Janice Logan, Charles Halton

Votes: 1,886

28. Dr. Ehrlich's Magic Bullet (1940)

Approved | 103 min | Biography, Drama

True story of the doctor who considered it was not immoral to search for a drug that would cure syphillis.

Director: William Dieterle | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Ruth Gordon, Otto Kruger, Donald Crisp

Votes: 1,243

29. Edison, the Man (1940)

Passed | 107 min | Biography, Drama

82 year old inventor and entrepreneur Thomas Alva Edison is honored in 1929 and he reflects back on his sixty year career of scientific achievement.

Director: Clarence Brown | Stars: Spencer Tracy, Rita Johnson, Lynne Overman, Charles Coburn

Votes: 1,328

30. Escape (1940)

Passed | 98 min | Drama

1938: A young man arrives in Hitler's Germany, frantically seeking information about his German mother, and finds she is pending execution at a concentration camp.

Director: Mervyn LeRoy | Stars: Norma Shearer, Robert Taylor, Conrad Veidt, Alla Nazimova

Votes: 698

31. The Fatal Hour (1940)

Approved | 68 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

When Captain Street's best friend Dan Grady is murdered, Street enlists the help of Chinese detective James Lee Wong. Mr. Wong uncovers a smuggling ring on the waterfront of San Francisco ... See full summary »

Director: William Nigh | Stars: Boris Karloff, Marjorie Reynolds, Grant Withers, Charles Trowbridge

Votes: 868

32. Flowing Gold (1940)

Approved | 81 min | Adventure, Drama, Romance

Johnny Blake, dodging the law on a false murder charge, gets work in the oil fields. His boss and friend Hap O'Connor turns on him when Johnny and Hap's girlfriend Linda fall in love. An ... See full summary »

Director: Alfred E. Green | Stars: John Garfield, Frances Farmer, Pat O'Brien, Raymond Walburn

Votes: 263

33. Foreign Correspondent (1940)

Passed | 120 min | Action, Romance, Thriller

On the eve of World War II, a young American reporter tries to expose enemy agents in London.

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Joel McCrea, Laraine Day, Herbert Marshall, George Sanders

Votes: 15,950 | Gross: $3.48M

34. Four Sons (1940)

Approved | 89 min | Drama, History, War

When the Germans invade Czechoslovakia the four sons of a Czecho-German family follow different paths: Czech patriot, Nazi supporter, artist in America, and heroic German soldier.

Director: Archie Mayo | Stars: Don Ameche, Eugenie Leontovich, Mary Beth Hughes, Alan Curtis

Votes: 74

35. French Without Tears (1940)

86 min | Comedy

The love affairs of three young Englishmen at a language cramming school in the south of France. Diana, the sister of one of the boys, arrives in town to flirt with all of her brothers' schoolmates.

Director: Anthony Asquith | Stars: Ray Milland, Ellen Drew, Janine Darcey, David Tree

Votes: 61

36. The Ghost Breakers (1940)

Passed | 85 min | Comedy, Horror, Mystery

A radio broadcaster, his quaking manservant and an heiress investigate the mystery of a haunted castle in Cuba.

Director: George Marshall | Stars: Bob Hope, Paulette Goddard, Richard Carlson, Paul Lukas

Votes: 2,640

37. Go West (1940)

Passed | 80 min | Comedy, Musical, Western

The Marx Brothers come to the rescue in the Wild West when a young man, trying to settle an old family feud so he can marry the girl he loves, runs afoul of crooks.

Director: Edward Buzzell | Stars: Groucho Marx, Chico Marx, Harpo Marx, John Carroll

Votes: 4,619