The 250 Best Drama Movies of All Time

The 250 Best Drama Movies of All Time's icon

Created by Jostiel.

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A list mainly of movies whose central focus is drama, though some movies here have elements of suspense or humor as well, such as thrillers, action movies and comedy-dramas. To give prominence to a diverse variety of styles and more room to a greater number of directors, only one movie per series will appear here. The installment selected is the one I hold the highest, representing the series as a whole. So you'll only find one Godfather movie here, for example.

The choice of which I rank highest changes with time. Also, there are many lauded films I've yet to see and new releases mean new entries, so the list will be revised regularly. The list will however consistently reveal my fondness for adventure movies and film noir. It's also telling that non-English speaking movies are excluded, reflecting the important role English-language movies have played in film history. Out of the acclaimed non-English speaking movies I've seen, I'd place many near the top, but to add them and leave out classics I haven't seen would be to make an incomplete list. As it is, this list focuses on the movies in English that struck a chord with me. Feel free to recommend new titles!

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  1. 1 -

    The Last of the Mohicans

    1992, in 7 top lists Check
  2. 2 -

    Dead Poets Society

    1989, in 10 top lists Check
  3. 3 -

    Citizen Kane

    1941, in 36 top lists Check
  4. 4 -

    Casablanca

    1942, in 36 top lists Check
  5. 5 -

    Boyhood

    2014, in 11 top lists Check
  6. 6 -

    Ordinary People

    1980, in 7 top lists Check
  7. 7 -

    Dances with Wolves

    1990, in 15 top lists Check
  8. 8 -

    Schindler's List

    1993, in 31 top lists Check
  9. 9 -

    First Reformed

    2017, in 2 top lists
    Check
  10. 10 -

    Paris, Texas

    1984, in 21 top lists Check
  11. 11 -

    The Godfather

    1972, in 38 top lists Check
  12. 12 -

    The Shawshank Redemption

    1994, in 21 top lists Check
  13. 13 -

    Vertigo

    1958, in 42 top lists Check
  14. 14 -

    Raiders of the Lost Ark

    1981, in 26 top lists Check
  15. 15 -

    Pulp Fiction

    1994, in 35 top lists Check
  16. 16 -

    Before Sunrise

    1995, in 12 top lists Check
  17. 17 -

    On the Waterfront

    1954, in 30 top lists Check
  18. 18 -

    The Fighter

    2010, in 3 top lists Check
  19. 19 -

    Leave No Trace

    2018, in 2 top lists
    Check
  20. 20 -

    Taxi Driver

    1976, in 32 top lists Check
  21. 21 -

    North by Northwest

    1959, in 26 top lists Check
  22. 22 -

    Jaws

    1975, in 26 top lists Check
  23. 23 -

    It's a Wonderful Life

    1946, in 29 top lists Check
  24. 24 -

    Captain Fantastic

    2016, in 0 top lists Check
  25. 25 -

    Memento

    2000, in 24 top lists Check
  26. 26 -

    Fight Club

    1999, in 16 top lists Check
  27. 27 -

    Winter's Bone

    2010, in 3 top lists Check
  28. 28 -

    Tess

    1979, in 5 top lists Check
  29. 29 -

    The Hurt Locker

    2008, in 10 top lists Check
  30. 30 -

    L.A. Confidential

    1997, in 23 top lists Check
  31. 31 -

    Chinatown

    1974, in 28 top lists Check
  32. 32 -

    American Beauty

    1999, in 23 top lists Check
  33. 33 -

    Stand by Me

    1986, in 7 top lists Check
  34. 34 -

    Lady Bird

    2017, in 6 top lists Check
  35. 35 -

    Double Indemnity

    1944, in 32 top lists Check
  36. 36 -

    Belle

    2013, in 0 top lists Check
  37. 37 -

    The Night of the Hunter

    1955, in 30 top lists Check
  38. 38 -

    The Bridge on the River Kwai

    1957, in 29 top lists Check
  39. 39 -

    Lawrence of Arabia

    1962, in 40 top lists Check
  40. 40 -

    Apocalypse Now

    1979, in 36 top lists Check
  41. 41 -

    The Last Picture Show

    1971, in 18 top lists Check
  42. 42 -

    Kes

    1969, in 11 top lists Check
  43. 43 -

    Se7en

    1995, in 23 top lists Check
  44. 44 -

    One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

    1975, in 33 top lists Check
  45. 45 -

    Gilda

    1946, in 12 top lists Check
  46. 46 -

    Blue Valentine

    2010, in 1 top list Check
  47. 47 -

    Reservoir Dogs

    1992, in 24 top lists Check
  48. 48 -

    Moonlight

    2016, in 8 top lists Check
  49. 49 -

    Requiem for a Dream

    2000, in 19 top lists Check
  50. 50 -

    Monster's Ball

    2001, in 1 top list Check
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Last updated on Mar 31, 2019 by Jostiel;