10 Best 60′s Movies

Friday, July 22 by Tom Gordon

The 10 best 60's movies, like the 1960s themselves, feature a mishmash of styles, attitudes and artistic expression. From Beatles' antics in "A Hard Day's Night" to the uber-violence of "The Wild Bunch," the best 60s movies include innocent fun and dark truths and everything in between. The movies on this list also includes some screen performances for the ages. How about 1962, when the Best Actor Oscar race came down to Peter O'Toole in "Lawrence of Arabia" and Gregory Peck in "To Kill a Mockingbird"? For more about best of 60s cinema, read on.

  1. "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid." The best film of the 60s or any decade. This 1969 romp starring Paul Newman and Robert Redford as outlaws on the run in a changing West is the perfect blend of action, suspense, humor and pitch-perfect performance. And the script by William Goldman belongs in a Hall of Fame somewhere.
  2. "Lawrence of Arabia." Not just one of the ten best 60s movies, but considered by many to be among ten best films ever made, David Lean's epic story of T.E. Lawrence is unforgettable, and O'Toole was phenomenal.
  3. "The Graduate." Another all-time great 60s film performance was turned in by Dustin Hoffman, as a recent college graduate trying to navigate his way through a whole new world of sex, grown-up expectations, and, of course, "Plastics." Anne Bancroft, as the original cougar Mrs. Robinson, was also perfect.
  4. "The Dirty Dozen." A guy's guy movie about men on a mission in World War II. A dozen convicts are sent on what appears to be a suicide mission behind Nazi lines. It's not great art, but decades after its release, it remains one the best adventure movies ever made.
  5. "Dr. Strangelove: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb." Maverick director Stanley Kubrick delivered an all-time great film with this 1964 Cold War satire that featured hilarious performances by George C. Scott and Peter Sellers, playing three roles.
  6. "The Sound of Music." It may not be every guy's first choice of what to watch on a rainy Sunday afternoon, but most women adore this film and it's hard to keep one of the most beloved movies ever made off this list.
  7. "To Kill a Mockingbird." One of the rare movies to be considered as good as the outstanding novel on which it was based. It, too, is a movie cherished by every generation who discovers it and its take on the evils of prejudice. And if there was ever an actor who was perfect for a part, it's Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch.
  8. "Guess Who's Coming to Dinner." Another socially conscious, but gentle film that dealt with race in turbulent times, this 1960s classic movie starred Spencer Tracy, Katherine Hepburn and Sidney Poitier confronting the complicated nature of mixed marriage.
  9. "A Hard Day's Night." There's little to no plot and it seems on the surface just to be a lot of silliness in between performances by the Beatles. But under the direction of Richard Lester, it somehow all works brilliantly.
  10. "The Wild Bunch." Released the same year as "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid," this Sam Peckinpah Western was one of the most violent mainstream films ever made to that point. There's still more gunfire and fatal shootings in this movie than in most movies since.