Top 30 of 1967

playtime eiffel

1967 was a crazy good year. Usually with these lists I just post a top 20, but there were so many worth entries that I am making an exception and posting 30. Many of those between 21-30 could make my list in other years.

My list is quite Criterion heavy. I didn’t plan it that way. I watch plenty of films, Criterion or otherwise. It just happens that Criterion has a great sampling of the year, whether they are on Blu-Ray, DVD, or as part of the Eclipse series. The label is represented well.

There is one omission that I could get some grief about, and that is Bonnie & Clyde. I do not hate the film. On the contrary, I think it was an important film that pushed the boundaries between what was happening overseas and was a crucial part of the American New Wave. So why is it not on this list? I’ve seen it three times, and it simply does not resonate with me.

Overall, I am pleased with this list. There is a nice balance of Hollywood and International film, and it is a diverse list, with even a couple cult classics and heavy art films that are probably not for everyone.

Phenomenal year!

1. PlayTime
2. Point Blank
3. Belle de Jour
4. Marketa Lazarova
5. Mouchette
6. Dont Look Back
7. The Firemen’s Ball
8. Samurai Rebellion
9. Warrendale
10. La Collectionneuse
11. A Colt Is My Passport
12. The Graduate
13. Peppermint Frappé
14. Cool Hand Luke
15. Le Samourai
16. Branded to Kill
17. The Girls of Rochefort
18. In Cold Blood
19. Weekend
20. Two for the Road
21. Japanese Summer: Double Suicide
22. The Dirty Dozen
23. In the Heat of the Night
24. The Two of Us
25. Oedipus Rex
26. Zatoichi Challenged
27. Spider Baby
28. Night of the Generals
29. Sing a Song of Sex
30. Far From the Madding Crowd


Posted on November 12, 2015, in Film, Lists. Bookmark the permalink. 19 Comments.

  1. I saw PlayTime a couple of months ago and adored it, so I’m glad to see that it topped your list, and Far from the Madding Crowd is one of my personal favorites that doesn’t seem to get much attention. Great choices!

    • Even though it placed low on the list, seeing the 1967 Far from the Madding Crowd made me not want to see the new one. I just don’t see how a shorter film can compare.

  2. Let me be the first to offer you grief for not picking Bonnie & Clyde 🙂 We certainly have some similarities in our top fives apart from that… For me: 1. Bonnie & Clyde 2. Belle De Jour 3. Play Time 4. Le Samourai 5. Point Blank

  3. The year before I was born.. Great list..May have to discover some Playtime with La Collectionneuse and look forward to 1968! Would consider labeling those films that are available to CC/CCboxsets or Eclipse especially for easy recollection or if only available region B like Peppermint Frappe’.

    • Peppermint Frappe is on Hulu through Criterion, so I wonder whether there are plans to release another Saura Eclipse. Or they may just be sitting on the content. They do that. Either way, it is an obscure gem.

  4. I was going to the movies regularly in 1967 and my favorite movie seen in theaters that year was the 5th James Bond movie, YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE, one of the best moviegoing experiences I’ve ever had and still one of my favorite movies. Earlier that summer I saw the unforgettable double feature of Roger Corman’s ST. VALENTINE’S DAY MASSACRE and Mario Bava’s PLANET OF THE VAMPIRES. I later caught up with other great 1967 films in theaters including THE DIRTY DOZEN (happily on your list), POINT BLANK (also on your list), Howard Hawks’ EL DORADO, and all three Sergio Leone “Man with No Name” Italian westerns, the entire trilogy of which was released in the U.S. in 1967. Years later, I caught up with big screen showings of lots of other great foreign 1967 releases including SAMURAI REBELLION and LE SAMOURAI (both also on your list), as well as Chang Cheh’s ONE-ARMED SWORDSMAN starring Jimmy Wang Yu; King Hu’s DRAGON GATE INN, Hiroshi Inagaki’s KOJIRO, Ishiro Honda’s SON OF GODZILLA, several Zatoichi films and countless others. What a great year. Also nice to see the underrated NIGHT OF THE GENERALS on your list.
    I did a piece on my blog called: “1967: Action Cinema’s Greatest Year”:

    • Nice! Yes, I’ve seen most on your list. I skipped the Corman. I have enjoyed some of his work, but not usually enough to make many of my best lists. Sounds like an amazing year you had. I’ll go check out your blog post.

  5. ’67 really was a great year for films. ‘Bonnie and Clyde’ gets all the attention, but ‘Point Blank’ is a better film.

    i haven’t seen all the films on your list but I would also include:
    Two or Three Things I Know About Her
    Belle du Jour
    In Like Flint
    Quartermass and The Pit
    The Shooting
    Welcome to Hard Times
    The Incident
    Wait Until Dark

    I know some of these are not as highly regarded as typical classics from this year like The Graduate, but these are ones that have remained relevant for me

    • oops, you have Belle du Jour and The Shooting was from ’66, so I’ll substitute
      Billion Dollar Brain
      and Don’t Look Back

      • ** hmm.. checks again,sees Don’t Look Back, changes that to Hombre. Yes, even with the casting of Newman as a half Native American, it’s still great.

    • LOL. Actually Hombre was my #31. Solid film. As for the Godards, he tends to be hit or miss for me. We’ll just say that Weekend was a hit, and 2 or 3 Things was a miss. I did not get to catch La Chinoise.

      • I will admit that I like 2 or 3 Things mostly as a time capsule – it is an odd film, but memorable.
        I also had to check on what was released in ’68 as a comparison. While there are quite a few excellent films, I’d have a hard time making a list of 30 great films for that year.

      • There are some heavyweights in 1968, but at a glance I agree that it isn’t as deep as 1967. Of course as I start to delve into that year, my opinion might change.

  6. I have yet to see many of these especially the Criterion releases. LE SAMURAI and COOL HAND LUKE would be very high for me.

  7. Certainly a terrific list! My Number 1 film of that year is MARKETA LAZAROVA -which is high enough on your list- but I’d have to spend a bit of time to do my Top 30. But I’ll get to it. Again great work here!

    • Thanks, Sam. I was talking with a friend recently who didn’t get into ML. It is a difficult world to get into, but very rewarding once you are there. I have a feeling that it will be even more rewarding with rewatches.

  8. RE: 1968. In looking over a list of films I’ve seen from 1968, the only Hollywood films that stand out for me as exceptional that year are PLANET OF THE APES and 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY. The ones I most like from that year tend to be Italian (e.g. THE MERCENARY) and Japanese (WAR OF THE GARGANTUAS, THE GREEN SLIME, to name a few). Hollywood films started to get self-conscious and take themselves too seriously, a problem that would persist for about three years, until films like DIRTY HARRY, THE FRENCH CONNECTION, SERPICO, AMERICAN GRAFFITI, MEAN STREETS, THE EXORCIST, etc. offered a corrective.

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