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

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

in Movies, Travel & Leisure


For whatever reason (most likely the fact that viewing is easier than reading), films don’t seem to get the same kind of cultural respect as books do. Which is a shame because excellent movies can be just as entertaining, mind-expanding, and life changing as good books. Scenes, characters, and quotes from the greatest movies stay with us long after we view them. Their ability to transport you to different times and exotic locations, to completely absorb you in the story, make movies one of the closest approximations of real magic we have in this world.

And for better and for worse, film has had a huge impact on masculinity in the 20th Century. Movies have produced archetypes of manliness that many men judge themselves against today. To view how male characters of cinema have been portrayed over the decades, is to see clearly the ways in which our perception of masculinity has changed and continues to change. Thus it seemed only proper that The Art of Manliness take a stab at creating a list of essential movies every man should see.

We didn’t want to make a list of movies that consisted solely of violence and gratuitous T and A that make up most guy movie lists. Nor did we want to create a list of just independent avant-garde movies that while culturally or cinematically significant, aren’t very entertaining. We wanted to create a well rounded list of films that have something to say about manliness. Some of the movies speak poignantly about what it means to be a man. Others give examples of true manliness in action. Some are lessons in how not to be a man. And others are simply entertaining movies that are just plain manly. But the common thread that runs through all of them is that they’re great movies that have stood the test of time.

Let us know in the comments which movies you loved, which ones you hated, and the movies you think every man should see before he dies. Without further ado, we present The Art of Manliness 100 Must See Movies for Men.

The Great Escape


This group of Allied POWS fought the enemy the best way they could – by bustin’ out of prison. Based on a true story, the film has been hailed as one the greatest escape movies of all time. Despite its length (172 minutes), the movie maintains interest through the engaging relationships of the prisoners. Each individual contributes their skills and personality to the effort, even the self-interested American (played by Steve McQueen). I guess his skill would be making killer motorcycle chase scenes.

Best line: “I’m going… out.”

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid


Based loosely on the real lives of Western outlaws Robert Leroy Parker (aka Butch Cassidy) and Harry Longabaugh (aka the Sundance Kid), Butch Cassidy and The Sundance Kid is a classic movie about two buddies trying to make it in a changing world. What’s funny about Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid is that you forget that these guys were hardened criminals who robbed banks and trains for a living. The easy going charm Robert Redford and Paul Newman bring to their roles makes you like the characters despite their choice of profession. Their clever hijinks and humor make the movie an enjoyable ride.

Best line: “Boy, I got vision, and the rest of the world wears bifocals.”

Dirty Harry


Cops that won’t let anything – even the law – stand in their way of catching the bad guy may have become a Hollywood cliché, but when Dirty Harry first pulled out his .44 magnum it was a brand new story. Harry Callahan stops at nothing as he hunts down the Scorpio, a serial killer that picks people off with a sniper rifle. The plot isn’t bad, but it’s Clint Eastwood that drives the entire picture. His rebel good- guy cop set a high mark for others to try and follow.

Best line: “You’ve got to ask yourself one question: ‘Do I feel lucky?’ Well, do ya, punk?”

The Endless Summer


Working 60 hours a week sucks. I mean, it really sucks. The idea of travelling around the world to exotic spots with the simple objective of surfing every chance you get is about the most enticing thing on the planet. In step Mike Hynson and Robert August. Famed documentary director Bruce Brown follows the pair around the world as they chase the summer and whatever waves they can ride. If you can’t surf, or you can’t take the time off work to surf – live vicariously through this movie.

Bull Durham


This movie is great for many reasons – of which, I cite two: 1) Kevin Costner can actually play baseball, instead of looking like a moron as do many other actors trying to swing a bat. 2) Tim Robbins character wears lingerie when he pitches – which is completely classic. Besides these, there are many other elements that make the movie relevant: the mentor/mentee, the old vs. the young, fighting for the woman, baseball. But ultimately it’s about a bunch of guys trying to make their mark on life – which we can all certainly relate to.

Best line: “Charlie, here comes the deuce. And when you speak of me, speak well.”

The Apartment


Do nice guys always finish last? Not necessarily. The Apartment is a true gem of a movie that doesn’t seem get the attention it deserves. Both dramatic and funny, the film is a dark comedy about a corporate drone who finally gets tired of being constantly walked on, mans up, and becomes a mensch. Things don’t always work out when you do the right thing, but sometimes they do.

Best line: “Shut up and deal.”

The Shootist


Nobody wants to die alone. Especially gunslingers. In a haunting portrayal that foreshadowed his own fate, John Wayne plays J.B. Brooks, an aging gunfighter dying of cancer who resigns himself to live out his days in private. But skeletons from his past prevent him from fading away, so he decides to go down the only way he knows – with his six gun blazing.

Best line: “I won’t be wronged. I won’t be insulted. I won’t be laid a-hand on. I don’t do these things to other people, and I require the same from them.”



At its core, Hoosiers is about redemption – basketball is just the vehicle. The story revolves around a basketball coach that has fallen from grace and finds himself at a small rural town in Indiana. He ruffles feathers and fights to earn the respect of his players, the town, and a doubtful teacher. The team chases glory, while others in the town remember what it is like to win. Not only is it one of the most inspiring movies of all time, it has one of the most hardcore stoics in all of sport movie history. Jimmy = Clutch.

Best line: “You know, most people would kill… to be treated like a god, just for a few moments.”

Last of the Mohicans


This movie set the standard for war epics of the modern era. Few are its equal. A Mohican father and his son, along with their adopted son, attempt to maintain their neutrality amidst the French-Indian War in colonial America. The men are pulled into the fray after rescuing two daughters of a British Officer during a skirmish and escorting them to their father’s fort. As the impending battle builds around them, the men remain devoted to the daughters, going to great lengths to preserve them. From the opening sequence of Uncas and Hawkeye sprinting through the dense forest, to the final scene on the promontory, the movie is gripping and powerful. Additionally, they play lacrosse in this movie – that fact alone secured its place on this list.

Best line: “Someday I think you and I are going to have a serious disagreement.”

The Bicycle Thief


An Italian Neo-Realist classic, The Bicycle Thief tells the bleak story of a man in impoverished post-war Italy whose bicycle, which he needs to work, is stolen. Father and son hunt all over Rome to find the bike, with no one to help them and ultimately no success. And thus the father is faced with a classic philosophical problem: is it okay to steal to feed your family? Realistic and honest, this movie provides one of the best glimpses into the nature of the father/son relationship.

Best line: “Why should I kill myself worrying when I’ll end up just as dead?”

Field of Dreams

field_of_dreamsTo what lengths would a person go for a chance at reconciliation? If it is for your (dead) father, most of us would do anything. Field of Dreams is Ray Kinsellas’s journey of reparation with his father. Ray, an Iowa farmer, erects a baseball field in his cornfield after a voice tells him, “If you build it, he will come.” The voice continues, and after a series of mysterious and supernatural events, he is able to make amends. It is quite possible that a game of catch can heal most wounds between a father and son – even death, I suppose.

Best line: “If you build it, he will come.”

North by Northwest


Starring dapper dude, Cary Grant, North by Northwest is classic Alfred Hitchcock. Grant plays a hapless New York advertising executive mistaken for a government agent by a group of foreign spies, and is pursued across the country while he looks for a way to survive. The problem is the government thinks he’s a spy, too, and they’re on the chase as well. Talk about a bad day.

Best line: “I don’t like the way Teddy Roosevelt is looking at me.”

The Outsiders


The film adaption of SE Hinton’s famous novel perfectly captures the tumultuous nature of teenage angst. The well-to-do Socs and blue collar Greasers hate each other’s guts, and when Johnny the Greaser kills a Soc, a series of dramatic and tragic events are set in motion, including an old fashioned rumble. The film is a star-studded affair, filled with the likes of Rob Lowe, Emilio Estevez, Matt Dillon, Tom Cruise, Patrick Swayze, Ralph Macchio, and Diane Lane, many before they were household names. And best of all, it was shot on location in my home city of Tulsa.

Best line: “Stay gold, Ponyboy, stay gold.”

First Blood (Rambo)


The more weighty issues in First Blood are usually overshadowed by the gratuitous action. Understandably so, but the movie is built on Rambo’s struggle to return to society after the Vietnam War. A Medal of Honor recipient, Rambo is kicked out of a small town and then arrested for vagrancy. The sheriff and his deputies go overboard with torture and Rambo reverts back to what he does best. Nothing good can come from pissing off a guy named Rambo.

Best line: “They drew first blood, not me.”

The Manchurian Candidate


A Cold War classic starring Frank Sinatra in probably his best movie performance. The film was so controversial that it was banned from further release after JFK’s assassination. The Manchurian Candidate focuses on the way in which propaganda and the manufacture of political views can influence one’s perception and behavior in the most provocative of ways. The story follows several former Korean War soldiers who have been brainwashed by the military. Follow them as they try to unravel the source of the reoccurring nightmares. A real thriller. Don’t bother with the Denzel Washington version. The original is still the best.

Best line: “There are two kinds of people in this world: Those that enter a room and turn the television set on, and those that enter a room and turn the television set off.”

In the Heat of the Night

mpaintheheatofthenightposter.jpg Virgil Tibbs (Sidney Poitier), a respected detective from up North, is thrown into a murder investigation in the small town of Sparta, Mississippi. While he initially doesn’t want any part of the case, Tibbs exemplifies manly resolve as he sticks around, staring down bigot after bigot while searching for the murderer. The film is famous for a scene in which Tibbs, after being slapped by a white man, slaps him right back. The screenplay originally called for Poitier to simply take it, but the actor found this passive response degrading and insisted he be allowed to hit back. That my friends, is being a man. You slap me in the face, I’ll slap you right back, Sucka.

Best line: “They call me MISTER Tibbs!”



A quiet gunslinger who is trying to escape his past befriends a pioneer family that has settled out west. He attempts to settle down and become a hired hand to the family, but the ranchers who want to drive cattle through the homesteaders’ property are attempting to drive them out. Shane tries to stay out of the disputes, but keeps being drawn in and is finally compelled to put his six shooter back on to protect his adoptive family. Perhaps the most touching part of the movie is the relationship Shane develops with the farmer’s son.

Best line: “A gun is a tool, Marian; no better or no worse than any other tool: an axe, a shovel or anything. A gun is as good or as bad as the man using it. Remember that.”

Double Indemnity


Perhaps the greatest American contribution to the film noir style, Double Indemnity is dark rumination on greed, manipulation, and betrayal. Barbara Stanwyck plays a classic femme fatale who uses her womanly wiles to lure insurance salesman Walter Neff into a plan to kill her husband for the “double indemnity” payout. But Neff is not a guileless victim after all. Palatable tension, suspense, and snappy dialogue make this film a true classic.

Best line: “How could I have known that murder could sometimes smell like honeysuckle?”

Mar Adentro (The Sea Inside)


Politics of euthanasia aside, living is so much more than just breathing. Based on the life of Ramón Sampedro, the movie examines the fight to end his own life after 30 years of being paralyzed from the neck down. Despite his desire to end his life, through his courage and self awareness, he inspired others to embrace their own.

The Maltese Falcon


The Maltese Falcon is filled with ambiguities in morality. Sam Spade, played by Humphrey Bogart, is a hardened and cynical man. But underneath his rough exterior is a man with a sense of idealism. Spade lives by a code of honor that doesn’t let him take the corrupt and easy solution to life’s problems. The Maltese Falcon forces us to answer a simple question: when push comes to shove, will we stick to our own code of honor or will we sell out?

Best line: “[It's the] stuff that dreams are made of.”

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{ 682 comments… read them below or add one }

501 J March 18, 2013 at 2:23 am

The Big Country – Definitely portrays something about what it means to be a man

502 Neil Curtis March 20, 2013 at 8:08 am

Some great, great movies here. Nice list. One that I think deserves to be in here, because it focuses so much on the character of a man: “The Quiet Man” with John Wayne. Great movie about standing by your principles.

503 Neil Curtis March 20, 2013 at 8:23 am

Oh, and “Scent of a Woman”! I’m surpirsed not to see this in any of the comments either, despite several other Pacino greats. Some great quotes: “You break my heart, son. All my life I’ve stood up to everyone and everything, because it made me feel *important*. You do it… because you mean it. You’ve got integrity, Charlie. I don’t know whether to shoot you or adopt ya.” and ” Now I have come to the cross-roads in my life. I always knew what the right path was. Without exception, I knew, but I never took it. You know why? It was too damn hard. Now here’s Charlie. He’s come to the cross-roads. He has chosen a path. It’s the right path. It’s a path made of principle that leads to character. Let him continue on his journey.” To pick a couple…

504 Craig March 25, 2013 at 3:24 pm

Not sure if anyone else mentioned these (not reading through 519 comments):

The Quick and the Dead
Apocalypse Now
The Razor’s Edge (Brilliant Drama from the early 80s with Bill Murray)
Legends of the Fall
Eric the Viking
The Road Warrior and all the Mad Max movies
The Mongol
Darby O’Gill and the Little People
Robin and Marian
Conan the Barbarian (Original)
And the best buddy movies The Hangover I and II

505 Buss March 26, 2013 at 10:48 am

Eye of the Tiger was on Rocky III not the first one. Great song but not from the frist movie. Cue: Take Me Back by Frank Stellone.

506 Moses March 29, 2013 at 12:35 am

What about Full Metal Jacket? It really reveals a few of the dark truths in life.

507 Rickster April 2, 2013 at 7:56 am

The Last Samurai should definitely be on this list.

508 Paul Rowe April 3, 2013 at 2:58 am

No Fast Times at Ridgemont High (Phoebe Cates scene alone is worry of a top 100 position) and Goodfellas?: Here’s a little wisdom from Goodfellas: “Shrimp and Lobsters are best, they go fast.”

The list could start and end with both of those movies.

509 John Mc Graw April 3, 2013 at 11:49 am

“On the Beach” should have made the list.

510 Marcelo7431 April 4, 2013 at 6:20 pm

How could you forget “Gran Torino”??? :o)

511 Ben April 13, 2013 at 10:03 pm

I’m not sure if it’s been previously mentioned, but the movie Adaptation, with Nicolas Cage by Spike Jonze, taught me about how rewarding it can be when you pursue the things you care about, whatever they are.

512 Rafael April 14, 2013 at 10:25 pm

I think the list needs “Stand by Me”

513 Jim Criswell April 15, 2013 at 3:17 pm

Must include “Northwest Passage” starring Spencer Tracy & Robert Young (1940) – “Roger’s Rangers”. Rogers leads a regiment of his men through dangerous indian country during the French/Indian War and on the brink of starvation, coaxes them on for a few more miles on a daily basis…best line from the movie – “You’re not hungry enough for what’s in the bag”

514 TNix April 15, 2013 at 5:45 pm

Glad to see Top Gun make the list. One of my all time favorite movies, and a big factor that led me to the Navy.

515 Ryan H. April 16, 2013 at 11:02 am

That is a pretty solid list. I am pleased to see On The Waterfront on the list, as it is one of my favorite movies of all time. However, another favorite movie of mine did not seem to make the cut and I think it really should have: Kramer vs. Kramer. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend it. Great movie about the manliness of fatherhood. Dustin Hoffman’s character is among my favorites. See this film.

A few others that I think warrant consideration are No Country For Old Men, The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, and Hud.

516 Kal-El K. April 22, 2013 at 11:37 pm

The Dark Knight Trilogy needs to be on the list.

517 BiggDawgg April 25, 2013 at 12:08 am

One of funniest movies in the last fifty years that every man should see is National Lampoon’s Animal House. Funny today as the day it was released!

518 Michael S. April 27, 2013 at 1:28 pm

Ok, so you put down American Beauty and not 300, Heartbreak Ridge, or any of the Evil Dead movies??? Or even The Green Berets??? We want more John Wayne and Clint Eastwood!!!

519 Bill B April 28, 2013 at 6:40 pm


520 John April 30, 2013 at 9:54 am

BEN-HUR, an all-time classic hero who never gives up.

521 Ben G April 30, 2013 at 7:18 pm

This list contains a wide variety if amazing films, and I think they are all fantastic, but you should perhaps do a second list in addition to this one, there are just so many awesome movies out there, ex. Scent of a Woman, Good Will Hunting, Raging Bull, Lost in Translation, 127 Hours(I realize that came out after you made this list), Scarface, etc. Also, I think would be cool if you made a “(random number) Must See TV Shows” list. Thanks!

522 Derek May 2, 2013 at 7:32 am

Top movies for the list:
*Sling Blade
*American History X
Without a doubt. I have plenty more, but no time to add more.

523 J Randall May 2, 2013 at 9:08 pm

You created an excellent list. I would only make 2 suggestions:

Being There with Peter Sellers as Chauncy Gardener. Inspiring.

12 Angry Men … um … see, the word “men” is in the title, and the cast is superb.

524 Denny May 6, 2013 at 6:45 pm

Roxanne is a great fun guy movie, Mel Brooks films are something to choose from but his all time best is the recent interview of Mr Brooks now thats a mans man, very smart guy.

525 Alex May 14, 2013 at 7:03 pm

Also don’t forget about these movies.
The dark knight
And die hard

526 Waitsel Smith May 17, 2013 at 10:50 am

As I read the list, I kept thinking, “He has to have so-and-so movie on here.” And then it would appear. Great list. I’m not sure some of these commenters get what your list is about. Most of them just seem to be recommending favorite movies without considering the purpose of your list. I agree that The Quiet Man with John Wayne could be added, as well as several other John Ford movies. He’s about the top men’s director, in my book. His early film, The Informer (1935) is powerful. But you can’t have everything. I think you included the most important. I might have added Casino Royale, Gold Finger and From Russia With Love. Most guys love James Bond. I actually like Live Free Or Die Hard (2007) as well as Die Hard. Captain America has something to say to me, though far fetched. Batman Begins is a better film than Dark Knight, as also speaks to men and their identity. Return Of The King (2003) is the best of the Lord Of The Ring trilogy. I agree that last Samurai (2003) should be on here. One of the few movies that made me cry out loud in a movie theater. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) with James Stewart speaks to courage in the face of fear. Rio Bravo is a good, fun western. Red River (1948) is one of the best westerns ever made. Treasure Of The Sierra Madre (1948), with Humphrey Bogart, is a great men’s classic. Stage Coach (1939) is the definitive western. Battleground (1949) was the definitive realistic war film until Band Of Brothers came along. City Slickers is one of the best men’s comedies, dealing with “one thing.” Second Hand Lions (2003) and Jerry McGuire (1996) also deal with men’s issues. Big Fish (2003) deals with the father-son issue. Then there are suspense thrillers like A Beautiful Mind, The Fugitive and Valkyrie. Anyhow, you done good. :)

527 Joseph Updike May 31, 2013 at 2:16 pm

I think Red Cliff should be on this list. Even though it’s in Chinese, there is great heroism and manliness that is not seen in American films.

528 Ryan June 5, 2013 at 12:29 pm

Great list. The Emporer’s Club should be given honorable mention.

529 Andy June 6, 2013 at 9:41 am

Legends of the Fall?!?!

530 Alan June 6, 2013 at 3:41 pm

I have to agree with “J” that “The Big Country” is an amazing manly movie.

531 Dan June 9, 2013 at 8:05 am

May I recommend The Wind and the Lion (1975) and Lawrence of Arabia (1962)? Both are very manly films. The former even has Teddy Roosavelt as a main character. The story includes a bear he shot being mounted in the Smithsonian, Sean Connery as a Bedouin chieftain, and US Marines.

532 Bob June 11, 2013 at 4:14 pm


533 MK June 11, 2013 at 7:34 pm


Man’s movie all around.

534 Ian June 11, 2013 at 9:36 pm

You went with Ghostbusters and Groundhog Day, but not Blues Brothers?

Greatest War Movie of all time? It’s going to be a challenge to pick between Saving Private Ryan and Apocalypse. Two very different war movies. They both deserve to be there.

Pulp Fiction? For the amazing approach to storytelling

2001 A Space Odyssey. Just the Kubrick thing, the pacing, the style and the first really amazing science fiction film.

Thank god you didn’t put Forrest Gump in there.


535 ST June 21, 2013 at 2:53 pm

Those recommending 300 as a “Man’s Movie”: Yes, if you prefer the company of gentleman for your erotic visual pleasures. I’m truly astonished anyone could comprehend otherwise.

Also, speak with a few Marines or war historians who actually saw action and ask them if that movie correctly portrays battle of any era. The movie is for fans of shiny war porn, not warriors.

536 Ali June 24, 2013 at 3:27 pm

Men Of Honor (2000)

537 Some Dude June 28, 2013 at 3:38 pm

Needs more “Gallipoli”.

538 Conor June 30, 2013 at 11:55 am

I’m sure these have been posted in previous comments, but some modern classics (and some not so modern) that are missing (assuming I didn’t miss them)

Resevoir Dogs
Any of the Marx Brothers – Duck Soup or Night at the Opera
Pick a Mel Brooks – Space Balls or History of the World
Monty Python and the Holy Grail

539 Shane-San July 1, 2013 at 5:35 pm

This is a great list. Just rented “The Hustler” and am going to watch it this week. But…why is GoodFellas not on here? I would say it’s an even better gangster movie than the Godfather movies. It’s a fantastic story about boyhood, father issues, and of course how power corrupts. Perhaps the greatest lesson in the film is that “Bad company corrupts good character” (1 Corinthians 15:33). It’s dark and it’s violent but man is it well done…I guess more of a cautionary tale about how greed power, and bad company changes a person for the worst.

540 Ryan Schmidt July 2, 2013 at 6:12 pm

Great list, classics for sure. I haven’t read any of the comments so I apologize if these are duplicate suggestions but I would add Goodfellas, Tombstone and The Hangover.

541 BigH July 6, 2013 at 9:47 am

Scarface w/Al Pacino, the Usual Suspect, Casino, the GoodFellas, This boys life, Donnie Brasco, The Predator, The Terminator, The Devil’s Advocate, and Glengarry Glen Ross never made the List, what a shame!!!

542 Usman July 7, 2013 at 7:18 am

Just one film, just one- The last of the Samurai. The main character, Captain Nathan Algren is such a paragon of manliness throughout, though which can be summed up in the scene where he gets beat the hell out of by a samurai of superior skill for refusing to submit. This is a reflection of the group of samurai he comes to admire, who also get beat the hell out of, for refusing to submit to the new ways.
This film is all about manliness, reinforcing themes such as discipline, courage and simplicity of life.
A definite motivational for the aspiring!

543 steven July 9, 2013 at 1:31 pm

Grace card is about a man who’s son was killed by black men and then he became a cop. He had a poor relationship with his son, and he was teamed with a black cop. The incident made him racist and made him believe god hated him. His partner helped him regain his faith. When his son was shot, his partner was the only one who could save the boy.

544 arrow July 15, 2013 at 6:10 am

No Country For Old Men should definetly be in this list!
But nonetheless its an awesome list. Thank you! : )

545 Adam July 16, 2013 at 11:58 am

Cool Hand Luke, Legends of the Fall, Little Big Man, Second Hand Lions, Unforgiven, Inglorious Bastards, Lonesome Dove, White Hunter Black Heart, The Cowboys, The Culpepper Cattle Company.

546 Bruce July 16, 2013 at 12:05 pm

The Cowboys (john Wayne flick)
Blues Brothers
Animal House
Flight of the Phoenix

547 Steve Corso July 16, 2013 at 12:05 pm

Great list–almost all of my favorite films are on it, I would add the film “Warrior” a more recent film that really did a good job portraying some brother/brother, father/son dynamics.

548 Gary Klein July 16, 2013 at 12:21 pm

Companion to Seven Samuri would be The Magnificent Seven… great classic western background music too.

I’d also add The Dirty Dozen

549 Egon July 16, 2013 at 12:26 pm

“THE MAN WHO SHOT LIBERTY VALANCE” (John Wayne & Jimmy Stewart) can easily replace a few of the weaker selections. It’s a great movie for young men because it asks and answers the basic question all males ask themself at one point, what does it mean to be a man? It answers it in an unexpected way.

550 Jabberwocky July 16, 2013 at 12:36 pm

Excellent list (own most of em!) save some notable exceptions. List short on comedy: “Blazing Saddles”, “Dr. Strangelove…”, “The Holy Grail” & “Young Frankenstein” are all timeless masterpieces.
Most shockingly, “On any Sunday” has been excluded from this ‘manly’ list. You simply aren’t a motorcyclist if you haven’t viewed it!

551 Greg July 16, 2013 at 12:58 pm

Deer Hunter, Thin Red Line

552 Murdoc July 16, 2013 at 1:00 pm

How the heck did Top Gun make it up there, but Apocalypse Now, and Bladerunner didn’t?

553 Daniel July 16, 2013 at 1:13 pm

This list needs an addition: The Man from Snowy River. Amazing movie.

554 Marcus Waters July 16, 2013 at 2:13 pm

Outlaw Josey Whales????

555 Kowman Harsh July 16, 2013 at 3:16 pm

Great list. Saw every one. What about Forest Gump and Something Wicked This Way Comes.

556 Kowman Harsh July 16, 2013 at 3:17 pm

The Human Stain.

557 Scriss July 16, 2013 at 3:24 pm

“Cross of Iron”, a 1977 Sam Peckinpah movie.
James Coburn, as Corp. Steiner, illustrates how an NCO should behave; how he treated his men, and how he dealt with his officers. James Mason as Col. Brandt also performed his role as the fatherly senior officer. There is so much more to this film than what the critics saw in it.

558 Jim July 16, 2013 at 3:25 pm

The Lion in Winter (Katherine Hepburn and Peter O’Toole, 1968; NOT the one with Glenn Close and Patrick Stewart).

Raymond Chandler’s The Big Sleep (Bogart and Bacall NOT the Mitchum remake). “I don’t mind if you don’t like my manners, I don’t like them myself. They are pretty bad. I grieve over them on long winter evenings.”–Marlowe (Bogart). The book is a must read also.

559 Vort July 16, 2013 at 3:55 pm

I can’t believe they didn’t include A Clockwork Orange!

560 Armusaran July 16, 2013 at 4:40 pm

100 great movies… I miss two… one important; A Clockwork Orange and one just personal; The Warriors.

561 Culper July 16, 2013 at 4:58 pm

Legends of the Fall!

562 sam July 16, 2013 at 5:25 pm

consider espn films 30 for 30: survive and advance

563 russ July 16, 2013 at 8:16 pm

the list cannot be complete without
“The Outlaw Josey Wales”

564 chris July 17, 2013 at 3:41 am

Fight Club is a definite inclusion. But what a movies that is so male oriented, that no chick ever digs? Such as The Big Lebowski…Beavis n Butthead do America…
No QT movies? Pulp Fiction, Res dogs…Kill Bill…
Mississippi Burning was a great choice, but no American history X :(

565 Hal July 17, 2013 at 6:50 am

I would have included “Lonesome Dove,” but since it was a TV miniseries and not a theatrical release, it probably doesn’t count. Maybe they could do a separate list for TV miniseries.

566 Mathieu July 17, 2013 at 8:33 am

Has anyone forgotten . . . “The Breakfast Club”?! Total classic.

567 Bill July 17, 2013 at 1:25 pm

Needs The Man Who Would Be King, best buddy movie ever.

568 joe July 17, 2013 at 4:40 pm

I agree, outlaw josey wales. I would also add
The Patriot

569 Titus July 18, 2013 at 3:35 pm

This list is almost flawless, however, I completely believe that ‘Tombstone’ should be on here.

Take off ‘American Beauty’ if you need space. It was a good movie, and I understood the tragedy, but I don’t think that it should be here.

570 Titus July 18, 2013 at 10:15 pm

Many have already hit it, but I didn’t realize ‘Apocalypse Now’ was missing. Simply… Wow. Or ‘Black Hawk Down’ for that matter.

As for ‘A Clockwork Orange’, we’re talking about man-movies… There is little to take from that except a squirmy bottom and a confused look.

And yeah. No on ’300′. If that movie defines a man or somehow makes him a better one… We have some serious things to talk about.

571 Seth July 23, 2013 at 7:17 am

I’m surprised Carlito’s Way wasn’t mentioned, or a Bronx Tale. Some of the only movies that really had a profound affect on me, and they both definitely deserve a place in this list if you ask me.

572 Sean July 23, 2013 at 1:10 pm

No James Cagney?? :(

City for Conquest
The Roaring Twenties
Angels with Dirty Faces
White Heat
“G” Men
Lady Killer
Public Enemy
Etc etc.

573 1105 July 25, 2013 at 9:38 am

Rob Roy
A man who lived by his own principles and was willing to die for it.
“Honor is the gift a man gives himself, no man can give it, and none can take it away.” “You must never malign a woman or stand by and let another do so”
Not historically accurate, but a great film about uncompromising manliness.

574 adam July 26, 2013 at 9:44 am

Really? Top Gun? AND NO TOMBSTONE?!?!

575 thomas August 1, 2013 at 3:57 pm

Vozvrashchenie (The Return) 2003
Should definitely be on this list.

576 Sal August 2, 2013 at 12:41 pm

Great list of movies, I would recommend to replace “Karate Kid” with “A Few Good Men”

577 Misha August 6, 2013 at 4:43 am

1900 or Novecento is also a must watch!

578 joe August 10, 2013 at 12:50 am


579 Charlie Boyd August 13, 2013 at 9:16 am

Tombstone? or did I miss it? I can’t imagine a list like this without Tombstone, The Patriot, For the Love of the Game, and most recently, 42.

580 Ray Simpson August 15, 2013 at 6:16 am

Great list! but you missed four essentials, Point Blank, Little Faus and Big Halsy, Hud, and American Graffitti, Oh,! and The Mag. 7!.

581 Daniel E. August 18, 2013 at 7:25 pm

The Thin Man series and Secondhand Lions should definitely be on this list.

582 Anna-Marie Houtrouw August 22, 2013 at 2:05 am

I would definitely add Secondhand Lions and The Sandlot. :]

583 Hari August 22, 2013 at 10:31 pm

A movie that blew me away that I watched by accident: THE CINCINNATI KID

an amazing story and so so so well done.

584 Richard August 24, 2013 at 12:02 am

The Cincinnati Kid’ and ‘The Sand Pebbles’ are two deserving Steve McQueen classics. I would also include ‘The Blue Max’, ‘Twelve O’clock High’ and ‘LA Confidential’ to the list. For pure testosterone fight scenes ‘Hard Times’ gets my vote.

585 miss piggy August 26, 2013 at 2:59 pm

1: Mister Roberts w/ Henry Fonda
2: Twelve O’Clock High w/ Peter Fonda
3: Battle of Britain w/ Michael Cain Best Line: “Niemsi! Niemsi”- Polish Pilots “Shut up- in Polish!”- Michael Cain
4: Stalag 17 w/ William Holden
5: Swing Kids w/ Christian Bale
6: To Have and Have Not~ Far Too Many Best Lines in this movie to quote, but there’s a lot of’ em, and just think… Miss Bacall was only 19 years old in this film and oozed more sex appeal than most of the women you see on screen today twice her age.
7: The Importance of Being Ernest (1952 version, of course!) w/ Michael Redgrave~ Not your typical guy movie but still… It is about two male friends, one who is in love with a lady, and the other set on seducing his friend’s young and pretty female ward- and all of the women having this fixation on the name Ernest- a classic comedy.
8: The Hunt for Red October w/ Sean Connery~ How could you not list this one?
9: The Conspirator w/ Robin Wright~ A well done film… for any period in American film.
10: Guess Who’s Coming To Dinner w/ Sidney Poiter. For those of you who have not heard of this film, it is about how an American white family deals with their daughter coming home with her black boyfriend who she is in love with and intends to marry. Racy stuff for Hollywood in the ’60′s.
11: The Odd Couple w/ Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau. Really? After all you’ve been saying about the importance of having guy friends, you’re not going to include this one? It’s a classic! Pre- Bromance BS.
12: Who Framed Roger Rabbit w/ Bob Hoskins and Christopher Lloyd. An ’80′s flick, I know, but there are some good ’80′s flicks worth watching.
Well, that’s it. My watered down version of damn good movies. P.S. I take umbrage to that comment made by Chris about women not being into The Big Lebowski. I love that movie!

586 Ted August 28, 2013 at 10:32 pm

Where is The Quiet Man!?!

Surely you can’t have a 100 greatest guy movies with out one of the greatest “feel good movies” of all time! And one of the longest fight scenes!

587 Joe September 4, 2013 at 1:46 am

I doubt suggestions from the peanut gallery will affect the the list itself, but for anyone reading the comments looking for more movies may I humbly suggest watching Secondhand Lions as a movie about true manhood

588 Richard September 6, 2013 at 7:39 am

‘Hud’ is certainly one movie which contrasts how to behave like a man and how NOT to behave like a man.

589 Mike September 18, 2013 at 10:15 pm

What about The Mountain Men and Raiders of the lost ark

590 Damon September 26, 2013 at 8:09 am

Looks like everyone else has hit on just about every movie I’d add… except for:
The Princess Bride & Office Space
…just my 2 cents.

591 BaykahBoy September 26, 2013 at 4:41 pm

Master and Commander!

592 Ted September 30, 2013 at 10:14 am

“Gods and Generals” is a great addition because not only is it a stirring war movie, but it closely follows a man of real character – Gen. Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson. And he is well portrayed in the movie. Likewise there are some good scenes from the consummate gentleman, Gen. Robert E. Lee.

593 Steve Kopischke October 3, 2013 at 4:02 pm

I have seen almost all of the movies on this list. I think it is comprehensive and right on the money, except for two entries: Citizen Kane and One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. I realize that CK is considered the best movie ever made, but it didn’t do a thing for me at all. I read Cuckoo’s Nest (the book the play and movie were based upon) and acted in the play. The movie, by comparison and even on its own, is just awful.

594 Chris October 8, 2013 at 7:13 pm

The all time greatest “MAN” flick is “Sometimes a Great Notion”, released in 1971 and starring Paul Newman, Henry Fonda, and Lee Remick.

However, if all I had to watch was these 100 movies….I would be pretty happy.

595 Robert October 12, 2013 at 12:04 pm

The name of Roy Hobbs bat in “The Natural” is “Wonder Boy”, not “Boy Wonder”.

596 Paul October 18, 2013 at 4:32 am

The Wild Bunch!
A classic anti-hero “Man” flick about why you should stick with your comrades and your job when you know you sure as hell can’t stick with your convictions.
Plus the ever-loving craziest, bloodiest shootout of all time.
Starring William Holden and Robert Ryan (check!) and directed by Sam Peckinpah (check!)
I also want to throw in Steve McQueen’s greatest and most unheralded movie- The Sand Pebbles

597 Eli October 18, 2013 at 12:55 pm

I would really have liked to see Kenneth Branagh’s screen adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Henry V”. It is by far my absolute favorite movie, and captures many qualities that I would find relevant to this list.

598 JP October 18, 2013 at 10:28 pm

A good recent addition is Mud. It’s sort of like a Mark Twain book merged with Stand by Me, Slingblade and Deliverance (which should be on your list). There’s also a lot of coming-of-age, masculinity themes and male-female relationship dynamics. We also see that being a white knight (i.e., doing everything for your woman, a longtime Hollywood theme) can have a dark side…be careful which woman you choose.

599 GP October 19, 2013 at 10:08 am

Tip top list. Risky Business though…it’s not just about tom cruise sliding around in his socks. He runs a brothel out of his parents house, makes massive cash, f#ks on a train, bribes his future college interviewer with prostitutes, gets greedy, a pimp steals all of his stuff, loses all of his money. “Sometimes you gotta say…what the f#ck!”

600 Some Guy October 21, 2013 at 12:14 am

No mention of the animated series “Fist of the North Star?”

Kenshiro’s about as manly as you can get!


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