100 Must See Movies: The Essential Men’s Movie Library

by Brett & Kate McKay on July 13, 2009 · 698 comments

in Movies, Travel & Leisure

Das Boot

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Das Boot puts you inside a stranded and submered German U-Boat and explores the physical and emotional tensions of the situation with a vivid, terrifying realism. Holding it all together, under harrowing conditions, is a single man. The captain is a scruffy, mildly cynical, bastion of strength. He deals calmly with almost any situation, drawing on a seemingly unlimited store of courage.

Best line: “You have to have good men. Good men, all of them.”

Star Wars (The Original Trilogy)

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The reason Star Wars became a cultural phenomenon wasn’t because of the special effects. It was the story. Star Wars simply put a futuristic spin on the archetypal story of heroic good vs. evil that men have been telling around fires for millennia. Stick with the original trilogy. They’re still the best. Mainly because manly man Han Solo is in it. If CGI effects was all it took to make a good movie, then we would have all loved Jar Jar Binks.

Best line: “I am your father.”

Rudy

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Rudy, a scrappy blue collar kid, has a dream of playing football with the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. While Rudy wasn’t blessed with the talent or the body to be a star athlete, he’s a got a lot of heart and determination. When you’re feeling like the underdog in life, just plop down and watch Rudy. You’ll be ready to “Play Like a Champion” afterwards.

Best Line: “You’re 5 foot nothin’, 100 and nothin’, and you have barely a speck of athletic ability. And you hung in there with the best college football players in the land for 2 years. And you’re gonna walk outta here with a degree from the University of Notre Dame. In this life, you don’t have to prove nothin’ to nobody but yourself. And after what you’ve gone through, if you haven’t done that by now, it ain’t gonna never happen. Now go on back.”

High Noon

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High Noon is film about being torn between duty, love and standing up for what you believe in, even when everyone else abandons you. Gary Cooper plays Will Kane, a town marshal from New Mexico, who settles down with his pacifist Quaker wife (played by Grace Kelly, one of your grandpa’s babes). Kane plans to retire to a peaceful life are interrupted after he gets word that a former gunslinger is coming in on the noon train to settle an old score with him. His wife pleads with him to leave town, but Kane knows he can’t. He has a duty to defend the town and his honor. Will finds himself alone in the battle as everyone in town, including his deputy sheriff, have turned away from him. The tension builds, leading up to the final gun battle.

Best line: “Don’t shove me Harv. I’m tired of being shoved.”

Gandhi

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It is impossible to capture the life of any man in one film, much less the life of a man who saw and did as much as Mahatma Gandhi. Thus the filmmakers who tried to capture his life on the silver screen sought not to give a blow by blow account of Gandhi’s life, but instead to capture his spirit in what they did show. The film begins with Gandhi’s assassination and then starts the retrospective of his life, beginning with his being thrown off a train for being Indian, and through his non-violent efforts to win Indians their rights and then their independence. One man truly can free an entire nation, if not change the entire world.

Best line: “They may torture my body, break my bones, even kill me, then they will have my dead body. NOT MY OBEDIENCE!”

Rebel Without a Cause

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When people think about James Dean, they typically picture him in his role in Rebel Without a Cause. Even though it’s over 50 years old, Rebel Without a Cause still captures the feelings of modern teenage angst: nervous, confused, and feeling lost in a world that is changing. James Dean plays Jim Stark, a juvenile delinquent who moves into a new town. Jim clashes with other teenagers and his parents, whom he feels simply don’t understand him. The movie often points a finger at weak or absent fathers as the cause of teenage rebellion. Jim father’s always backs down to his wife when they argue, leading Jim to ask, “”What do you do when you have to be a man?”

Best line: “You’re tearing me apart!”

The French Connection


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The French Connection is based on the true story of the Turmanio Case- a large heroine smuggling ring that linked the New York mob with a French mob in Marseilles. Two NYC cops busted the ring using tactics that were morally and ethically questionable. In The French Connection, the names have been changed, but the overall story stays the same. Legendary actor Gene Hackman plays Popeye Doyle, a ruthless cop who’ll do anything, legal or not, to get the job done: wiretaps, shakedowns, theft distribution of heroin to informants, extortion. You get the idea. The French Connection is thus a Machiavellian film. It forces the viewer to ask themselves if the ends really do justify the means, even if the end is noble. Oh, and a porkpie hat never looked so bad ass on a man as it does on Gene Hackman in this film.

Best line: “All right, Popeye’s here!”

Casablanca

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Filled with iconic scenes and memorable (but often misquoted) lines, Casablanca is a love story that you can watch with your girlfriend, while still feeling manly because it has Humphrey Bogart in it. Bogart plays Rick Blaine, a bitter American ex-patriate living in Casablanca during World War II. One day his old flame and the woman who turned him cynical, Ilsa Lund (Ingrid Bergman) walks into his club with her husband. An awkward and tense love triangle commences. In the end Blaine has a decision that many men face in their life: get what you want or sacrifice for the greater cause.

Best line: “Here’s looking at you kid.”

Unforgiven

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Cinema often glorifies the Old West as a mythic time when good guys wore white and the bad ones wore black. In Unforgiven, director/actor/producer Clint Eastwood shines a light on the dark, violent, and morally ambiguous aspects of life in frontier America. Clint Eastwood plays William Munny, a once notorious and violent killer. Now, he’s just a quiet and tired farmer who is a devoted father still mourning his dead wife. But Will’s old life comes back to haunt him when he’s asked to do a hit on a cowboy who slashed the face of a prostitute. Will is transplanted from his farm in Kansas to a town in Wyoming where he meets Sheriff Little Bill Daggett (Gene Hackman), a mean son-of-a-bitch who is determined to not let the hit go down, no matter what it takes. Hold onto your hats, partners. This isn’t your grandpa’s Western.

Best line: “Hell of a thing, killing a man. You take away all he’s got and all he’s ever gonna have.”

The Iron Giant

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Animated films often don’t have much to offer a man, packed as they are with zany animal sidekicks and pop culture humor. But The Iron Giant is not so much an animated film as it is a film that happens to be animated. It’s a beautifully drawn, intelligent, and thoughtful film in which a giant robot falls from space and is befriended and taken care of by a boy. It’s 1957, and Cold War paranoia is running high, making the robot a target of government suspicion. I won’t give the ending away, but the story is an emotional tale about doing the right thing and sacrifice. A real masterpiece.

Best line: “You are what you choose to be. You choose. Choose.”

Gladiator

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General Maximus Decimus Meridius represents all that is good in a man. He loved his family, he loved his country, he knew how to lead, and he kicked some serious ass. This movie has everything a man would want in a flim: epic battle scenes involving huge swords and a protagonist who is fighting for what is right. If you ever need a film to pump you up for something, watch Gladiator.

Best line: “What we do in life, echoes in eternity.”

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

smithJimmy Stewart plays a small town scoutmaster named Jefferson Smith who is picked to fill an empty U.S. Senate seat. The scheming politicians and party boss who foisted this office on Mr. Smith had plans to control this naive country bumpkin as a cog in their political machine. Little did they know, they picked a man filled with integrity, honor, and ideals. The filibusterer scene is classic. Mr. Smith spoke for 23 hours straight, beseeching his fellow Congressman to listen to their consciences, only to faint out of exhaustion at the end. Hokey? Maybe a bit. But in a world where corporate and political corruption runs rampant, men like Mr. Smith can inspire all men everywhere to stand up for what is right.

Best line: “Because of just one, plain, simple rule: Love thy neighbor. And in this world today, full of hatred, a man who knows that one rule has a great trust. You know that rule, Mr. Paine, and I loved you for it, just as my father did. And you know that you fight for the lost causes harder than for any others. Yes, you even die for them, like a man we both knew, Mr. Paine.”

The Hustler

The Hustler posterA brash young pool shark named Fast Eddie (Paul Newman) sets his sights on defeating one of the game’s greatest players–Minnesota Fats (Jackie Gleason). But getting up on Fats isn’t enough. He wants to crush his opponent. Eddie’s relentless drive eventually becomes his undoing as his winning streak turns to defeat. But Fast Eddie is tenacious. He musters up some more cash and challenges Minnesota Fats again. The Hustler is about more than pool. It’s about winning and losing, greed, self-respect, and redemption.

Best line: “You know, this is my table, man. I own it.”

The Untouchables

untouchablesDuring the time of Prohibition, when it seemed the whole country could be bought and sold by ganglords, a small group of men stood firm and fought the storm that raged around them. The movie follows Eliot Ness, a U.S. Treasury Agent, and his group of hand picked men that brought down the infamous mob boss, Al Capone. Sean Connery is perfect as Jim Malone, the gritty Irish street cop who taught us never to bring a knife to a gun fight.

Best line: You wanna know how to get Capone? They pull a knife, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue. *That’s* the *Chicago* way!

The Grapes of Wrath

grapes.jpgBased on John Steinbeck’s famous novel, The Grapes of Wrath follows a group of “Okies” during the Great Depression on their westward trip to a California in search of a better life. Henry Fonda plays the story’s main protagonist, Tom Joad, a man who has to hold his family together as the high hopes they began the journey with collide with a far colder reality. The film softened Steinbeck’s political overtones and gave the story a more hopeful ending, yet it’s still a movie of real thought-provoking substance.

Best Line: “I’ll be all around in the dark – I’ll be everywhere. Wherever you can look – wherever there’s a fight, so hungry people can eat, I’ll be there. Wherever there’s a cop beatin’ up a guy, I’ll be there. I’ll be in the way guys yell when they’re mad. I’ll be in the way kids laugh when they’re hungry and they know supper’s ready, and when the people are eatin’ the stuff they raise and livin’ in the houses they build – I’ll be there, too.”

Bullitt

Bullitt-PosterSteve McQueen is the man and Bullitt puts his rugged manliness on full display. The film is raw and edgy and changed the way detective movies were made in Hollywood. The best thing about this movie? The epic car chase scene through the streets of San Francisco. It was and still is the best car chase scene in film history. A 390 GT Mustang never looked so good.

Best line: “You work your side of the street and I’ll work mine.”

The Best Years of Our Lives

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Although we remember World War II as “the good war”, the one where the soldiers didn’t complain much about the hell they went through, GI’s from the Big One had the same rough time transitioning back to home life that all soldiers did and do. And The Best Years of Our Lives is a rare movie that honestly captures that experience. The film follows 3 servicemen who hitch a ride together back to the same town. Each has a very different life he is coming home to, and each has their own struggles to fit back into that life.

Best line: “You know, I had a dream. I dreamt I was home. I’ve had that same dream hundreds of times before. This time, I wanted to find out if it’s really true. Am I really home?”

Die Hard

die_hardWith believable characters and deft touches of humor supplementing the blow em up plot, Die Hard reigns as one of the greatest action films of all time. John McClane, played by Bruce Willis, is an off-duty cop who gets caught up in a fight when sophisticated bank robbers crash his wife’s company Christmas party. He picks them off one by one, and even survives their attempt to blow up the building. I’d hate to see what John McClane would have done if he had his shoes on.

Best line: “Come out to the coast, we’ll get together, have a few laughs…”

Enter the Dragon

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An underground martial arts tournament, drugs, prostitutes, revenge, some sick Kung Fu, mirrors – is there anything this movie doesn’t have? The first Kung Fu flick to come out of Hollywood was, sadly, the final one from Bruce Lee. Hailed as one of the most financially profitable films of all time, Enter the Dragon capitalized on the insane ability of one of martial arts’ prodigies. The story follows Lee on a journey to avenge his sister’s death and bring honor back to his master and Shaolin Temple. Throw in a secret island, some hookers, maybe a little international espionage and… let’s face it, we don’t really watch these kinds of movies for the plot. Bruce Lee is ridiculously awesome and that’s all I really need to say.

Best line: “Don’t think. FEEL. It is like a finger pointing away to the moon. Do not concentrate on the finger or you will miss all that heavenly glory.”

Malcolm X

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American culture has unfortunately and simplistically rendered the history of the civil rights movement as a battle between Martin Luther King Jr., the good guy who got it right, and Malcolm X, the bad guy who got it wrong. The story is of course much more complicated, as is Malcolm X himself. You owe it to yourself to get a fuller picture of the man by reading his autobiography, and watching this film which also goes a long way in showing both his faults and his too often forgotten virtues.

Best line: “A man curses because he doesn’t have the words to say what’s on his mind.”

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{ 682 comments… read them below or add one }

601 Sebastian October 21, 2013 at 3:24 pm

For me a must see movie is Fight Club. I just love the deep meaning of the film and the actors are great. Don’t we all have a hidden Tyler Durden inside of us? ;-)

602 Tom October 24, 2013 at 12:43 pm

I didn’t see Caddyshack on the list!

603 Jason October 25, 2013 at 9:53 am

We were soldiers is also a very good example of leadership and the fatherly role a military leader has to take on during battle

604 Dusty October 25, 2013 at 10:59 am

I agree with Jason, We Were Soldiers would be a great addition, as well as The Patriot, and Red Dawn.

605 Ronnie October 27, 2013 at 7:30 am

I have to disagree with the best line from The Maltese Falcon. In my opinion it was Humphrey Bogart to Peter Lorre: “When you’re slapped you’ll take it and like it!”

606 Kevin October 28, 2013 at 1:44 pm

How about “The Great Santini”?

607 Mark November 1, 2013 at 2:27 pm

The Quiet Man; Hatari; Donavon’s Reef; Gallipoli;

608 The Reverend November 2, 2013 at 7:09 am

The Ox-Bo Incident

609 Brandon November 3, 2013 at 12:37 am

I don’t know how, but I think Apocolypse Now would be a good one. Quote of the movie: “A spear?”

610 Joshua Jordan November 3, 2013 at 8:24 pm

Greetings Brother:

Please excuse the email change, I’m having trouble with joshua.jordan@gmx.com right now. I was going through your site because I wanted to print that statesman article for my son so he could know what to look for in other men. It’s part of a series of articles, mostly written by me and a handful by others, for my son on leadership.

I came across your top 100 films and I believe you may be in error, Brother. It is my duty, according to our charge, to correct you. Since this is a matter of opinion, I will not hold it against you if you disagree. =)

I will not attempt to tell you what place it should occupy or what film it should displace from the list but you seem to have left out two of the most important films of all time:

The first, I believe, is important to any young boy with a good heart, but especially to Masons and those who go deeper into the esoteric arts and sciences. This film is truly epic; it’s the most important film nobody has ever seen. It is the 1981 version of Excalibur; this trailer is only two minutes but if you don’t want to see it after seeing this then nothing will convince you to see it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOqlV4Le9Tk

The second film is also an epic tragedy, but it is epic only within the lives of the participants of the game. This film must be seen in the original Sweedish. The 1958 version of the Seventh Seal https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NtkFei4wRjE I realize that you have to be a bit “artistic” to “get this”, but — through your writing — I’m confident in your sophistication and I believe you’ll grasp the substance of this film.

Beyond this, I have a couple asides that are not questions about the list, but general banter about film that I believe you may find interesting or useful.

I’m a bit puzzled about Gone with the Wind. Clark Gable played a man the way I believe a man should be in that film. He was cool, calm, and collected even as the artillery came raining in and he knew how to handle men and women; he did not choose an unsuitable mate in the end. But, every man respects different men for different things and so I understand your decision to not place it on the list.

Also, as a Mason, a traveler, and a person somewhat trained in the craft of intelligence I have to say The Man Who Would be King is a great accomplishment as a film, but likely not worthy of the list, because it speaks to those aspects of myself in the film with great majesty. Still, I think you’d like it. =)

611 kevin November 10, 2013 at 6:14 pm

Warrior with Tom Hardy should definitely be on this

612 Donna November 12, 2013 at 11:28 pm

I guess these aren’t just for men since I’ve seen 92 out of 100.

613 Ray Hill November 15, 2013 at 8:38 pm

Love the list. I agree totally with all of these as worthy of top movies list. I’m always on the lookout for good movies and found one recently that falls right in line with the nature of this blog. I’m referring to the Russian-made “The Admiral” based in part on true story during the Bolshevik revolution. I’ve never heard of it but stumbled upon it one day and was quite impressed by the film. Though subtitled, it is sure not to disappoint.

614 JP November 16, 2013 at 12:19 am

Thanks for the list. Looks like I have some more to add to my watch list. I would agree with Dusty to add The Patriot. There’s a few others I would add to my list of essentials, Sergeant York, Saints and Soldiers, To End All Wars, The Sacketts, High Noon, The Book of Eli, Defiance, Spartan, Luther, Amazing Grace, The Fugitive, The Notebook, Radio, Life is Beautiful, Finding Forrester, The Hades Factor, The Mission, Invictus, Skyfall, Jesus of Nazareth, Up, Captain America: The First Avenger, The Pursuit of Happyness and Bella. I may add The Bucket List and Moneyball after viewing them, as they also come so highly recommended.

615 Florin November 17, 2013 at 3:42 pm

“Burnt by the Sun”, by Nikita Mikhalkov would fit nice in the list too. Just seen “The Great Escape”, a nice example of manliness :)

616 Tobey November 25, 2013 at 3:56 am

How about “Rain Man” starring Dustin Hoffmann?

617 Brandon R. November 26, 2013 at 2:25 pm

I am so glad you included Top Gun on this list! Everybody picks on me for loving that film because of its homoerotic imagery, but damn it, I learned so much about being a man from that movie.

Some recent entries I would tack on:
Pacific Rim (for obvious reasons)
The Dark Knight Trilogy (you don’t get much manlier than Batman, and the scene where he crawls out of the pit in The Dark Knight Rises get me every time)
The new 3:10 to Yuma (so many manly lessons, from both the outlaw and the rancher; best line: “Even bad men love their mamas.”)
The Rock (Ed Harris as the honorable villain makes the movie, but Sean Connery basically reprising his role of James Bond doesn’t hurt).

618 Florin November 29, 2013 at 2:29 pm

Brandon, thanks for “3:10 to Yuma” hint. Great film.

619 Les December 2, 2013 at 9:16 pm

I would argue that the best line in the Bourne Series is the following, spoken by the operative Jason kills in the first movie (played by Clive Owen) and then by Jason to the operative about to shoot him on the rooftop in “Ultimatum”:

“Look at us. Look at what they make you give.”

620 Jeff December 5, 2013 at 4:47 pm

I was glad to see that Patton made the list. I knew a gentleman who was a dentist in the 3rd Army. General Patton came to him and said he had a tooth that was bothering him. Doc examined him and found he had a cavity that needed filling. He prepared to give the general a shot to numb him and the general asked “Do you do that for all my boys?” To which the doctor said “No sir.” The general said “If you don’t do it for my boys, you won’t do it for me.” He said that Patton sat in the chair and didn’t so much as wince as he was drilled.

621 Robert Anderson December 7, 2013 at 12:24 pm

Patton’s dentist should said “Suck it up, slacker” and then ranted about all the suffering, dying boys out there, and here’s
the general whining about a toothache!

622 skinny December 7, 2013 at 8:18 pm

“Hustle and Flow”. From its very first line, “Man ain’t like a dog”, it’s an extended meditation on a male becoming a man.

623 Chris December 11, 2013 at 10:52 am

Legends of the Fall

624 Don December 12, 2013 at 9:51 am

Jack Nicholson in “The Last Detail” EPIC Guy movie!
I joined the Navy because of this movie!

625 Jordan Crowder December 13, 2013 at 6:11 am

I would have to add Barry Levinson’s “Diner” to this list.

626 Doug Mott December 14, 2013 at 4:10 pm

Do not forget the Outlaw Josey Whales.
And Mel Gidbson The Patriot.

627 Paul Capone December 16, 2013 at 2:17 am

Four movies to add:

1. Angels with Dirty Faces
Public Enemy or White Heat
-Three of the Original Ganster movies, starring Hollywood’s Original Ganster, James Cagney

2. The Dirty Dozen
-I am Shocked you missed this one

3. The Fighting Sullivans (1944)
-Brothers Stick together. Brotherly love

4. Mister Roberts (1955)
-James Cagney, Henry Fonda, Jack Lemmon, William Powell!
This is an every Man movie. how to act with a boss that is less than par and how to be a Leader. It shows the growing of men.

These are essential in every Man’s movie list!

628 gene December 16, 2013 at 9:42 am

how is THE WARRIORS not on here?!?!?!?

629 GrocerMan December 17, 2013 at 7:08 pm

Without a doubt, Glenngarry Glenn Ross needs to be on this list. Watching it will make you a better man.

630 Lee December 19, 2013 at 1:09 pm

Good list … you didn’t included Redford’s The Candidate … another I’d include is Good Will Hunting …

631 Austin December 20, 2013 at 1:46 am

I run my own movie review blog and I used this list to create my own list of 10 movies for every guy to see. Check it out here: http://austinsmoviereviews37.blogspot.com/2013/12/10-movies-every-guy-should-see.html

632 RW December 20, 2013 at 1:22 pm

One of the greatest manly movies in my opinion is “Touch of Evil,” by Orson Wells. Charleston Heston’s role as the tough, honest detective is one of his best, in my opinion, while Wells’ corrupt lawman is his perfect foil.

633 Ozzy December 26, 2013 at 12:54 pm

Brandon(nov 3,’13)…how about “I love the smell of napalm in the morning” (Robert Duvall)

634 Homa December 27, 2013 at 12:32 am

“The Quiet Man” – Classic tale of manhood. Love, marriage, money, drinking, fighting, John Wayne. Would also throw in Charlton Heston in “The Ten Commandments” and original “Planet of the Apes”, unless I missed them on the list.

635 GrocerMan December 29, 2013 at 9:05 am

And the quote for Glenngarry Glenn Ross, at least in my book would be: “What are you going to do about it? What are you going to do about it, Asshole?”

@Ozzy: I’m the Brandon who posted that about Apocolypse Now. I just changed my name since there were a ton of Brandons on here. What you suggest is the obvious answer, it was just too obvious for me though so I went with something different. That scene was pretty fantastic, but it just kinda drives me crazy how people will (mis)quote it to death though.

636 HENRY MOSSBERG December 30, 2013 at 6:05 pm

Like the list BUT,

Where is:
John Wayne’s “The Cowboys”,
either “3:10 to Yuma”,
Bronson/Robards “Once Upon a Time in the West”??

637 Wayne December 30, 2013 at 10:35 pm

Any thought for the following:
1) The Godfather-Brando,Pacino,Caan
2) Barfly-Micky Rourke(Pre plastic surgery)
3) Vacation-Chevy Chase,D Angelo, Brinkly
4) The Good The Bad and the Ugly-Clint

638 Glenn January 1, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Movies that should have made the list
Once were warriors
Good will Hunting
Man on Fire
Collateral
Falling Down
Snatch
Lock stock and two smoking barrels
Pulp Fiction

639 george January 2, 2014 at 3:08 am

best line (3 lines) of ghostbusters:

“Everything was fine until dickless here cut off the power grid!”
mayor- “Is this true?”
Bill Murray – “Yes, your honor, this man has no dick.”

640 Buster Douglas January 2, 2014 at 10:37 am

Moneyball is a special film. The best line is “..I hate losing, i hate losing more than I like winning.”

641 A.T. Post January 4, 2014 at 6:28 am

No love for “The Wild Bunch”? A group of aging outlaws watch the West disappear all around them, try their hand at one last big score, watch it go to hell, wind up with their backs against the wall and decide to end it on their terms? Sounds pretty manly to me.

642 Chris January 6, 2014 at 10:56 pm

32/100

Not exactly a stellar start, but that’s counting the Star Wars, Bourne, Indiana Jones and entire Bond series as one each… and I’m only 17. Give me a couple more years…

643 Steven D January 6, 2014 at 11:54 pm

This is an excellent list of films, and I’m glad to see that the films on this list go beyond, for the most part, the ‘cars, women, war, guns’ thing; in other words, the films here have more substance and serve a purpose greater than merely entertaining men with all the cliché things guys supposedly like. I’m shocked, however, that Gone With The Wind did not make the list. It would have been my first choice. Clark Gable? Hell, every young man today should hang a poster of Clark Gable above his bed, especially in his role as Rhett Butler. (I just happen to believe that Clark Gable was a gentleman on and off the screen.) In GWTW, Gable played a man who was confident, decisive, a healthy bit of arrogant, but also empathetic, emotional, a gentleman, albeit at times a conflicted one. I think it’s something that every man should aspire to be more like, and something that every man can probably, in some way, relate to — especially in so much as having regrets, acting foolishly but only by following one’s heart, and so on… so dare I say that this is a great list indeed, but incomplete. Gone With the Wind is essential.

644 Donald January 13, 2014 at 2:41 pm

Agree with the mention of Snatch, one of my al-time faves.

Great list. I’d add:
The Thin Man
L.A. Confidential
Lost Horizon
The Prisoner of Zenda
Tarzan of the Apes
The Day the Earth Stood Still
Hard Times
Gran Torino
The Blue Dahlia
Judgment at Nuremberg
The Big Lebowski
O Brother Where Art Thou
Sullivan’s Travels
Requiem for a Heavyweight
The Departed

Glad to see American Beauty on the list. My favorite line: “You…don’t get to tell me what to do…ever…again.”

645 Adrian Raul January 15, 2014 at 2:35 am

This list is awesome and so is this site..

646 Fred January 15, 2014 at 2:46 pm

The Holy Grail

647 James gayaldo January 15, 2014 at 5:12 pm

I have to recomend rollerball. Not the new one, the old one.

648 Denise Palmer January 16, 2014 at 11:26 am

Thrilled to see this list. I have seen many of the films but have to set to work to see many more. I am very excited to have found this website. Never heard of it before today.

649 Sander Ligtenberg January 20, 2014 at 2:03 pm

Just recently I saw “Lone Survivor” I had trouble sleepling that night but it made me think back of my time in the army. For a man who owns a dog i would like to mention ” A dog named duke” and ” red dog”

The first one is at times a bit cheesy but it made me choke. Red dog is just something else, I really enjoyed this. Hopefully you will go and see one of these movies.

Regards,
Sander.
The Netherlands

650 Sander Ligtenberg January 20, 2014 at 2:17 pm

I would also like to add the italian movie Caos Calmo (quiet chaos)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caos_calmo_(film)

651 Joe January 20, 2014 at 3:45 pm

American Beauty? Nothing manlier than a bunch of middle class whiners.

Full Metal Jacket
M*A*S*H
Jaws

652 Billyo January 22, 2014 at 3:13 pm

How about Gran Tarino, Clint Eastwood as a grumpy war veteran who sacrifices his life (once he knows he will die soon) for the sake of the family he disliked at the start. It shows compassion behind independent strength and the ability to act ethically without chattering.

653 skinnylegsandall January 22, 2014 at 3:29 pm

Three Days of the Condor
Slaughter House Five
Watch them twice you have to pay attention.

654 Nathan January 29, 2014 at 11:22 am

Secondhand Lions

655 Tory January 30, 2014 at 7:21 am

Love the list, but I can’t believe that “Road to Perdition” is not on it.

656 Kent January 30, 2014 at 9:30 pm

An exceptionally diverse list of menly movies. Thank you for playing more than one note. And thank you to many comments for expanding the list, a few titles at a time.

657 Bastiaan January 31, 2014 at 4:08 pm

Pity that The Last Samurai isn’t on the list, or V for Vendetta. Good to see Gladiator and Fight Club though! Also, I would recommendThe Pianist, Troy and The River Why.

Katsumoto: The Emperor could not hear my words. His army will come. For nine hundred years, my ancestors have protected our people. Now… I have failed them.
Algren: So you will take your own life? In shame? Shame for a life of service? Discipline? Compassion?
Katsumoto: The way of the Samurai is not necessary anymore.
Algren: Necessary? What could be more necessary?

[Katsumoto hands a samurai sword to Algren, it has a message written on it]
Algren: What does it say?
Katsumoto: “I belong to the warrior in whom the old ways have joined the new.”

658 Larisa February 4, 2014 at 4:40 am

Do not know much English, sorry. Stumbled on your site and are interested in becoming your opinions of men. As a woman, I would highly advise men see Russian TV series “The Penal Battalion”. Here is a true example of courage! I think that regardless of race, nationality or country of residence has oschie values ​​for all mankind, and they are indisputable.

659 Ironbob February 8, 2014 at 2:48 am

Sigh….Clerks.

660 Ty February 11, 2014 at 1:03 am

No Christopher Nolan movies. I mean whats manlier than Batman. No Tarantino movies either. If you could I would’ve said put all the great Hitchcock movies on there. Great list. All great movies.

661 Garrison February 12, 2014 at 8:11 am

I can’t believe you have movies like The Karate Kid, Top Gun , Rudy (I’m a ND fan but c’mon) and Lord Of The Rings on this list as must see movies. Where are
Godfather II – Apocalypse Now – Deer Hunter – Caddy Shack – The Big Labowski – American Graffiti – The Last Detail – MASH – The Conversation – Little Big Man – Fargo – No Country For Old Men – Psycho – Raging Bull – Boogie Nights – Taxi Driver – Animal House – Pulp Fiction – Good Fellas – Seven – Dr. Strangelove – Full Metal Jacket – Blazing Saddles – She Wore A Yellow Ribbon etc etc etc…

662 gardening tools for children australia February 15, 2014 at 2:02 pm

What a data of un-ambiguity and preserveness of precious familiarity regarding
unexpected feelings.

663 Gino February 16, 2014 at 11:46 pm

CRIMINAL EXCLUSIONS
Raging Bull, Taxi Driver, Scarface (1983), The Public Enemy, Once Upon A Time In America, Goodfellas, Casino, The Departed, Cinema Paradiso, La Vita E Bella, The Pianist, Forrest Gump

664 Michael February 20, 2014 at 9:55 am

Hunt for Red October…Sean Connery as the most manly boat captain ever.

665 Roger Wilson February 23, 2014 at 9:06 pm

Check out “The Lives of Others”. It’s kind of artsy, but I can’t think of a better example of two men doing the right thing in the face of adversity.

666 Dejan Davchevski February 25, 2014 at 12:18 pm

The Movie Saga that made me become a MAN was Rocky. In the first parts Rocky 1, 2, 3, 4, I heard Stallone’s Coach and his famous speech but it didn’t had as much impact on me as in the last movie – Rocky Balboa – when Stallone tells the same speech to his son.

I guess because of his acting or maybe because it was an epic closure to the whole saga but that speech made me cry. Listening to that speech was like listening to my own father giving me the best advice about life anyone can ever give.

I wrote a whole article about that speech on my website – http://www.lifecoachcode.com/how-winning-is-done/ – It would be an honor if you check it out!

667 Ken February 25, 2014 at 2:26 pm

I looked for Thunderbolt and Lightfoot. It ought to be on the list.

668 A.T. Post February 26, 2014 at 2:22 am

I thought long and hard about this, because I thought the list that was posted was dang near impeccable, but there’s one vital addition I think deserves mention:

“The World’s Fastest Indian” (2005).

669 Jim Watkins March 4, 2014 at 6:54 am

I don’t know how any movie list extolling manly virtues could exclude Billy Budd. Watch it, you’ll see….

670 Jackie March 5, 2014 at 7:54 pm

Four Feathers is a personal favorite. Abou Fatma is an inspirational character

671 Dan March 12, 2014 at 8:09 am

I agree with the list, mostly! :) I think Red Dawn (old or new) is also a great flick that delves into the duties of men and boys becoming men. Just my opinion!

672 Old Hickory March 12, 2014 at 1:10 pm

Hmm, Ghostbusters and Groundhog Day made it, but not Tombstone? Possibly the best modern made western.

673 Derrick Lehman March 20, 2014 at 1:11 am

After page four I was getting worried that It’s a Wonderful Life wasn’t going to make the list. That movie shaped my childhood and I’m only 20! I love those classic movies.

674 Samir Rahaman March 23, 2014 at 8:58 am

What about all of the James Bond movies? Dr. No isn’t enough. What about the movie Jaws.

675 Justin Wasson March 24, 2014 at 8:40 am

Love this list, I’ve watched so many great movies I probably wouldn’t have watched otherwise.

Two movies I’d add to the list;
All is Lost (2013) great movie about a man and survival
Crazy, Stupid, Love (2011) this movie might be considered by some a “chick flick” but if you really watch it, you learn how to dress like a man and be cool like Ryan Gosling

676 doug roach March 25, 2014 at 8:04 am

When my 2 boys were old enough, I had a list of movies for them to watch. All of them are here except 2. Aliens, which I suppose is not a manly movie, But Deliverance definitely belongs in this list. I have to say that I also had them watch Death Wish. Not sure if that was a good move or not.

677 Omar Omar March 28, 2014 at 10:32 am

300,troy,warrior,<——-Manliest Movies

678 Barnun March 29, 2014 at 9:55 am

add to your list (IQ} Meg Ryan
Left Hand of God- Bogart
Long Hot Summer – Paul Newman
Mr. Lincoln -Henry Fonda
Lonesome Dove

679 RJS II March 30, 2014 at 12:28 am

Dirty Dancing, and Road House Patrick Swayze’s the man

680 Mike Abrahams April 8, 2014 at 5:02 am

Man…you’ve got to include ‘The Soldier’ (Kurt Russell) with the totally awesome line: “I’m going to kill them all, Sir!” and in response to her offer of help…”No, soldiers deserve soldiers, Sir!”

681 Jimmy Brown April 9, 2014 at 11:10 pm

The Incredibles

I believe every man must see this movie before he marries and once a year afterwards. At it’s heart, it is the choice every married man must make.

682 Rob April 10, 2014 at 2:15 pm

The Quiet Man
Master & Commander
A Beautiful Mind
The 13th Warrior
Animal House
MASH
Kelly’s Heros

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