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ucme's avatar

What are some pre 1970's movies that you would consider enduring classics?

Asked by ucme (50031points) May 8th, 2010

I love old movies, way before my time but just love stuff like Cagney gangster movies, Karloff & Legosi horror & the likes of Harold lloyd, Laurel & Hardy & the Ealing comedies including The Lavender Hill Mob & The Ladykillers. Interested in what some of your fave old movies are.

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12 Answers

talljasperman's avatar

The Seventh Seal

the100thmonkey's avatar



jaytkay's avatar

I recently realized that although everybody recognizes Charlie Chaplin, I had never seen his movies. I rented Modern Times and now I understand why he’s such a big deal.

Jeruba's avatar

It would be a long, long list. Here are a few:
Gone with the Wind—always good for another viewing
Bonnie and Clyde—fresh in my mind since I saw it again last week for the first time since its first run in theaters
Pygmalion (with Leslie Howard and Wendy Hiller)—tops
Anything by Alfred Hitchcock, one of the all-time greats

Look up the big stars from the past—the likes of Bette Davis, Cary Grant, Katharine Hepburn, and Humphrey Bogart—and pick out a few of their pictures.

Check the Oscar winners from the forties and fifties and sixties and sample them.

Find interviewers with directors whose work you enjoy today and see how they answer the question about whose past work influenced them.

Sign up with Netflix, give 5 stars to the pictures you like best among the oldies, and see what others of the same sort Netflix recommends.

[Edit] Sorry, my answer is very U.S.-oriented, and I see that you are in the U.K. There is a great tradition of wonderful British pictures. Here’s a starter list if you like the comedies.

ucme's avatar

Mine to would be a long list.Practicality won through & suggested I cherry pick the icing on top.

marinelife's avatar

Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb

Bluefreedom's avatar

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid

filmfann's avatar

Good grief. Before 1970’s? Let’s start with Silent movies. Keep in mind this is just some of the great movies.

City Lights
Modern Times
The Gold Rush
The Kid
The Circus
The Great Dictator
The Navigator
The General
Sherlock Holmes Jr.
Seven Chances
The Freshman
Safety Last
Feet First
Alexander Nevsky
Ivan the Terrible, parts 1 and 2
The Battleship Potempkin
Seventh Heaven
Long Pants
Tramp Tramp Tramp

Early sound:

All Quiet on the Western Front
Animal Crackers
Duck Soup
A Night At the Opera
It Happened One Night
Min and Bill
The Westerner
Meet John Doe
The Lost Horizon
Mr. Smith Goes To Washington
The Wizard of Oz
Bride of Frankenstein
The Wolfman
The Invisible Man
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

the Forties:

I was a Male War Bride
The Best Years Of Our Lives
Goodbye Mr. Chips
The Maltese Falcon
Citizen Kane
The 39 Steps

(running out of breath here… more not to miss)

Lawrence of Arabia (the only Color movie I will include here)
The Day The Earth Stood Still
The Seventh Seal
The Seventh Samurai
Two Women

In short, there are thousands of great movies out there, long before the advent of Sensurround.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I never understood why Joan Crawford was such a big deal. I saw her 40s pictures and thought “meh.” But I saw her 1932 movie Rain, which is an adaptation of the story by Somerset Maugham, and damn. Sister girl could act.

There are just too many classic films of the pre-blockbuster era, not just in the US but all over the world, like Rules of the Game and La Grande Illusion, Hiroshima, Mon Amour, La Jetee, The Seventh Seal, The Red Balloon, The Bicycle Thief, (and because I live in NYC) Little Fugitive.

Jeruba's avatar

@filmfann, great list! You’re just the one to answer this. What do you think of the book Have You Seen… by David Thomson?

But surely you’re counting The Wizard of Oz as a color movie?

filmfann's avatar

@Jeruba You got me. It’s both.

Rufus_T_Firefly's avatar

McLintock! (1963) with John Wayne, Maureen O’Hara, Patrick Wayne, Chill Wills, Yvonne De Carlo, Jerry Van Dyke, Edgar Buchanan, etc..

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