Top 10 Most Influential Movies of the 60s


10) The Apartment (1960) – Billy Wilder’s subtle directing techniques and the unblemished chemistry between Jack Lemmon and Shirley Maclaine aided this delightful and heart warming romantic comedy. The last all black & white film to win best picture, The Apartment remains a guideline for all successful and aesthetically deep relationship comedies.


9) The Wild Bunch (1969) – Using the unforgiving and animalistic backdrop of the fleeting western, Sam Peckinpah’s The Wild Bunch, with its unique and exaggerated portrayals of violence and its gritty and polarized cast of characters, is the definition of revisionist western. With an unforgettable climax and a multi-dimensional meaning, Sam Peckinpah creates his magnum opus in response to the senselessness and easiness of killing in the modern day using the lack of humanity that thrives in the conventions of the western,


8 Midnight Cowboy (1969) – the poignant and poetic illustration of two unlikely friends trying to survive through the callousness that is big city living is one of the most perfectly made dramas in cinematic history. John Schlesinger’s Midnight Cowboy is a timeless spectacle of friendship, survival, and sacrifice reflected in the performances from Jon Voight and Dustin Hoffman.


7) To Kill a Mockingbird (1962) – the ultimate strengths in the faultless adaptation of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird is the combination of Robert Mulligan’s fantastic direction and Gregory Peck’s boundless performance as Atticus Finch. The moral social commentary that is contained in the potency of the novel is reflected through these two aspects of the film so succinctly, that the film remains to this day a model for dramatic and pertinent filmmaking.


6) Psycho (1960) – Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho reflects the perfection of the suspense masters work, bringing a significant and enduring mark on the suspense and horror genres. Flawlessly bringing Robert Bloch’s novel to life, Psycho horrifies and mystifies the audience into an uneasy and unforgettable cinematic thriller.


5) Bonnie and Clyde (1967) – the sympathetic tale of two unusual bank robbers, Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, was a significant piece in cinematic history, being the first to show violence in an extremely graphic manner. Incredibly modern in delivery and engaging in story, Arthur Penn’s Bonnie and Clyde impacted cinema in a very palpable way, never feeling dated or boring with the support of its incredible cast and the delicate handling of some diverse and profound topics.


4) The Graduate (1967) – the awkwardly relatable coming of age tale The Graduate, directed delicately by the renowned Mike Nichols, is a comedic yet heart warming reflection on the difficulties of becoming a young adult and establishing an identity. The incredibly sensitive subject matter and the light hearted story progression are delicately balanced and brought together with masterful directing and some brilliant performances, including the always remarkable Dustin Hoffman.


3) Dr. Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964) – Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove is the incredibly witty yet apocalyptically dark comedic critique of the cold war. Ahead of it’s time and expressively unique, Dr. Strangelove: or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb is another example of Kubrick’s brilliant social commentary, making a multi-layered piece of comedic cinema that contained unusual yet memorable performances from an eclectic cast including Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, and Sterling Hayden.


2) Lawrence of Arabia (1962) – David Lean’s extraordinarily ambitious character study Lawrence of Arabia about the flamboyant and controversial T.E. Lawrence, played marvelously by Peter O’Toole in his most memorable and gripping performance, is a relic for classical epic filmmaking. With a gorgeous display of cinematography that paints the scenery as if it were a canvas and the suburb subtle directing that paces the film beautifully, Lawrence of Arabia sits justifiably at the number six position on the AFI top 100 list.


1) 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) – the epic and ingenious tapestry that defines Stanley Kubrick’s methodical 2001: A Space Odyssey is a one of a kind cinematic piece of poetry that has yet to be repeated successfully. Loosely adapted from Arthur C. Clarke’s novel, acting as a series of vignettes rather than a straight storyline, the film ends up proving that cinema does not have to be bound to normal conventions.

Honorable Mentions (in no particular order):  The Producers, West Side Story, The Manchurian Candidate, Easy Rider, Spartacus, The Man Who Shot Liberty Valence, A Man for All Seasons, The Sound of Music, Cool Hand Luke, and Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid.

3 Responses to “Top 10 Most Influential Movies of the 60s”
  1. Kayla Laws says:

    only seen 7 and 4 but 4 IS LIKE ONE OF MY FAV MOVIES

  2. razael says:

    how can i place this in my facebook? awesome top 10

  3. I haven’t seen any of these movies on list and i think after now I’ll go fetch em out

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