Watchworthy

The Best Movies of 1991 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated February 17, 2020 12.6k votes 907 voters 21k views 115 items

List Rules Movies that were released in theatres in 1991 only

A list of the best movies of 1991, from dramas like The Silence of the Lambs to comedies like City Slickers. The '90s were a decade where Hollywood thrived. In were new stars and big blockbusters and 1991 was no exception. Some the best movies of this year are some of the best teen, coming of age, adventure, comedies and dramas in history. The films on here are very memorable and had audiences on the edges of their seats, and still pack a punch so many years aft they were first released. You shouldn't be too surprised by the movies listed on here.

As stated before, some of the best action movies of the decade were released in 1991. Who could forget Terminator 2 with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bugsy with Warren Beatty and Annette Bening, and of course, Point Break starring Patrick Swayze and Keanu Reeves. And let's not forget about the hilarious What About Bob? with Bill Murray.

The best movies of 1991 featured some of the biggest stars in the movie business. Whether it was the aforementioned stars continuing their success or the up-and-comers featured in Boyz in the Hood, or established stars like Anjelica Huston, Raúl Juliá and Christopher Lloyd in The Addams Family and Sally Field in Fried Green Tomatoes.

Some of the best movies of all time were released in 1991. This is the ultimate list of the best movies of 1991, which shouldn't feature the best movies of 1990. Vote and re-rank this list according to how you think the best movies of that year should be reflected. If you notice that there's a movie from this year that should be on this list but is missing, feel free to add it.
Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
list ordered by
1
Terminator 2: Judgment D... is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Edward Furlong, Linda Hamilton

Released: 1991

Directed by: James Cameron

Terminator 2: Judgment Day is a 1991 American science fiction action thriller film written, produced and directed by James Cameron. The film stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Robert ...more

More Terminator 2: Judgment Day 

#192 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #31 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Madelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

2
The Silence of the Lambs... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Chris Isaak

Released: 1991

Directed by: Jonathan Demme

The Silence of the Lambs is a 1991 American thriller film that blends elements of the crime and horror genres. Directed by Jonathan Demme and starring Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, and Scott ...more

More The Silence of the Lambs 

You've Been Watching Silence Of The Lambs Wrong For Years: It's A Comedy #2 of 250 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

3
Beauty and the Beast is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Angela Lansbury, Frank Welker, Jerry Orbach

Released: 1991

Directed by: Gary Trousdale, Kirk Wise

Beauty and the Beast is a 1991 American animated musical romantic fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Feature Animation and released by Walt Disney Pictures. The 30th film in the Walt Disney ...more

More Beauty and the Beast 

#6 of 377 The Best Musical Movies of All Time #102 of 601 The Best Animated Films Everlisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

4
Point Break is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Keanu Reeves, Gary Busey, Patrick Swayze

Released: 1991

Directed by: Kathryn Bigelow

Point Break is a 1991 American action film directed by Kathryn Bigelow, starring Patrick Swayze, Keanu Reeves, Lori Petty and Gary Busey. The title refers to the surfing term point break, where ...more

More Point Break 

Things About Point Break That Are Too Weird Not To Address #110 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #202 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

5
Thelma & Louise is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Brad Pitt, Susan Sarandon, Geena Davis

Released: 1991

Directed by: Ridley Scott

Thelma & Louise is a 1991 American film, written by Callie Khouri and directed by Ridley Scott. It stars Geena Davis as Thelma and Susan Sarandon as Louise, two friends who embark on a road ...more

More Thelma & Louise 

Behind-The-Scenes Stories From The Making Of 'Thelma & Louise' #102 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetimelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

6
Backdraft is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Robert De Niro, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh

Released: 1991

Directed by: Ron Howard

Backdraft is a 1991 action thriller film directed by Ron Howard and written by Gregory Widen. The film stars Kurt Russell, William Baldwin, Scott Glenn, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rebecca De Mornay, ...more

More Backdraft 

#383 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #93 of 293 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry #19 of 568 The Greatest Disaster Movies of All Time

7
Cape Fear is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Robert De Niro, Nick Nolte, Jessica Lange

Released: 1991

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Cape Fear is a 1991 American psychological thriller film directed by Martin Scorsese and a remake of the 1962 film of the same name. It stars Robert De Niro, Nick Nolte, Jessica Lange and ...more

More Cape Fear 

Behind The Scenes Of 'Cape Fear,' Robert De Niro's Most Unsettling Role #22 of 250 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #122 of 366 The Best Movies Based On Books

8
City Slickers is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Jake Gyllenhaal, Billy Crystal, Danielle Harris

Released: 1991

Directed by: Ron Underwood

City Slickers is a 1991 American western comedy film directed by Ron Underwood and starring Billy Crystal, Daniel Stern, Bruno Kirby and Jack Palance, with supporting roles by Patricia Wettig, ...more

More City Slickers 

#125 of 395 The Best Western Movies Ever Made #43 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

9
What About Bob? is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Bill Murray, Richard Dreyfuss, Charlie Korsmo

Released: 1991

Directed by: Frank Oz

What About Bob? is a 1991 comedy film directed by Frank Oz, and starring Bill Murray and Richard Dreyfuss. Murray plays Bob Wiley, a psychiatric patient who follows his egotistical psychiatrist ...more

More What About Bob? 

#29 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #323 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #59 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

10
JFK is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Kevin Costner, Gary Oldman, Kevin Bacon

Released: 1991

Directed by: Oliver Stone

JFK is a 1991 American historical legal-conspiracy thriller film directed by Oliver Stone. It examines the events leading to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and subsequent ...more

More JFK 

#853 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #109 of 710 The Best Movies Roger Ebert Gave Four Starslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

11
My Girl is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Jamie Lee Curtis, Macaulay Culkin, Dan Aykroyd

Released: 1991

Directed by: Howard Zieff

My Girl is a 1991 American comedy-drama film directed by Howard Zieff and written by Laurice Elehwany. The film, starring Macaulay Culkin and Anna Chlumsky in her feature film debut, depicts the ...more

More My Girl 

#53 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #94 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #8 of 293 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry

12
Hot Shots! is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Charlie Sheen, Kristy Swanson, Valeria Golino

Released: 1991

Directed by: Jim Abrahams

Hot Shots! is a 1991 comedy spoof film starring Charlie Sheen, Cary Elwes, Valeria Golino, Lloyd Bridges, Kevin Dunn, Jon Cryer and Ryan Stiles. It was directed by Jim Abrahams, and was written ...more

More Hot Shots! 

#51 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #153 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #170 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

13
Robin Hood: Prince of Th... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Morgan Freeman, Sean Connery, Kevin Costner

Released: 1991

Directed by: Kevin Reynolds

This film is a 1991 American-British adventure film directed by Kevin Reynolds. The film stars Kevin Costner as Robin Hood, Morgan Freeman as Azeem, Christian Slater as Will Scarlet, Mary ...more

More Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves 

Behind The Scenes of 'Robin Hood: Prince Of Thieves' #189 of 375 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Rankedlisted on The 50 Highest Grossing '90s Movies, Ranked

14
Boyz n the Hood is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Ice Cube, Angela Bassett, Cuba Gooding Jr.

Released: 1991

Directed by: John Singleton

Boyz n the Hood is a 1991 American hood drama written and directed by John Singleton in his directorial debut, and starring Ice Cube, Cuba Gooding Jr., Morris Chestnut, Laurence Fishburne, Nia ...more

More Boyz n the Hood 

#1 of 726 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #102 of 710 The Best Movies Roger Ebert Gave Four Stars #166 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys

15
Hook is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Gwyneth Paltrow, Julia Roberts, Robin Williams

Released: 1991

Directed by: Steven Spielberg

Hook is a 1991 American fantasy adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg, based on Peter and Wendy by J. M. Barrie. When Captain Hook (Dustin Hoffman) kidnaps his children, an adult Peter Pan ...more

More Hook 

What Happened To All The Kids From 'Hook'? #283 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made #175 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies

16
Father of the Bride is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Steve Martin, Diane Keaton, Martin Short

Released: 1991

Directed by: Charles Shyer

Father of the Bride is a 1991 American comedy film starring Steve Martin, Diane Keaton, Kimberly Williams, George Newbern, Martin Short, B.D. Wong and Kieran Culkin. It is a remake of the 1950 ...more

More Father of the Bride 

#57 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #159 of 293 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry #147 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

17
The Naked Gun 2½:... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
O. J. Simpson, Leslie Nielsen, Zsa Zsa Gábor

Released: 1991

Directed by: David Zucker

The Naked Gun 2½: The Smell of Fear is a 1991 comedy film starring Leslie Nielsen as the comically bumbling Police Lt. Frank Drebin of Police Squad!. Priscilla Presley plays the role of ...more

More The Naked Gun 2½: The Smell of Fear 

#220 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #80 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #114 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

18
Fried Green Tomatoes is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Kathy Bates, Mary-Louise Parker, Chris O'Donnell

Released: 1991

Directed by: Jon Avnet

Fried Green Tomatoes is a 1991 comedy-drama film based on the novel Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe. Directed by Jon Avnet. It tells the story of a Depression-era friendship ...more

More Fried Green Tomatoes 

#158 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made #277 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #60 of 804 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Made

19
The Addams Family is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Christina Ricci, Christopher Lloyd, Anjelica Huston

Released: 1991

Directed by: Barry Sonnenfeld

The Addams Family is a 1991 American fantasy comedy film based on the characters from the cartoon of the same name created by cartoonist Charles Addams. The movie was originally developed at ...more

More The Addams Family 

The Most Messed Up Things That Happen In The 'Addams Family' Movies #55 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #105 of 112 The Very Best Movie Franchises

20
The Last Boy Scout is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Halle Berry, Bruce Willis, Dick Butkus

Released: 1991

Directed by: Tony Scott

The Last Boy Scout is a 1991 American action film directed by Tony Scott, starring Bruce Willis, Damon Wayans, Chelsea Field, Noble Willingham, Taylor Negron and Danielle Harris. The film was ...more

More The Last Boy Scout 

'The Last Boy Scout' Is Basically A Parody Of '90s Action Movies #119 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #101 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies

21
Doc Hollywood is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Doc Hollywood Michael J. Fox, Woody Harrelson, Bridget Fonda

Released: 1991

Directed by: Michael Caton-Jones

Doc Hollywood is a 1991 romantic comedy film directed by Michael Caton-Jones, and written by Jeffrey Price and Peter S. Seaman. The film stars Michael J. Fox, Julie Warner, and Woody Harrelson, ...more

More Doc Hollywood 

#194 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #1,110 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #55 of 140 The Most Rewatchable Comedy Movies

22
The Doors is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Meg Ryan, Val Kilmer, Kelly Hu

Released: 1991

Directed by: Oliver Stone

The Doors is a 1991 American biopic about the 1960-70s rock band of the same name which emphasizes the life of its lead singer, Jim Morrison. It was directed by Oliver Stone.

More The Doors 

#308 of 377 The Best Musical Movies of All Time #154 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #22 of 212 The Best Drug Movies of All Time

23
Bill & Ted's Bogus J... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Keanu Reeves, George Carlin, Pam Grier

Released: 1991

Directed by: Peter Hewitt

Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey is a 1991 American science fiction and fantasy comedy film, and the directing debut of Peter Hewitt. It is the second film in the Bill & Ted franchise, and a ...more

More Bill & Ted's Bogus Journey 

#71 of 493 The Funniest '90s Movies #388 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #802 of 1,208 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

24
Star Trek VI: The Undisc... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
William Shatner, Kim Cattrall, Leonard Nimoy

Released: 1991

Directed by: Nicholas Meyer

Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country is a 1991 American science fiction film. It is the sixth feature film based on Star Trek, is a sequel to Star Trek V: The Final Frontier and was the last ...more

More Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country 

#74 of 191 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #191 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made #533 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

25
The Fisher King is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies of 1991
Robin Williams, Jeff Bridges, Tom Waits

Released: 1991

Directed by: Terry Gilliam

The Fisher King is a 1991 American comedy-drama film written by Richard LaGravenese and directed by Terry Gilliam. It stars Robin Williams and Jeff Bridges, with Mercedes Ruehl, Amanda Plummer, ...more

More The Fisher King 

#156 of 250 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #268 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetimelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever