40s The Best '40s Fantasy Movies  

Ranker Film
301 votes 103 voters 6.8k views 16 items

List Rules Vote up your favorite fantasy films that were released in the 1960s.

We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, Ranker may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

The best '40s fantasy movies have all the elements to make a classic make-believe film: ghosts, angels, the real Santa Claus, and puppets who come to life. A common theme throughout is the concept of coming back to life, or redeeming one's self through reinvention.

Though unsuccessful in its original release, It’s a Wonderful Life has gone on to become a perennial classic shown every Christmas. Directed by Frank Capra, It's a Wonderful Life tells the story of George Bailey, a suicidal man who attempts to kill himself on Christmas. His guardian angel comes down to rescue him, and shows him how many people in his life he has saved through his kind words and actions. Bailey decides to live, and returns to his family a new man. Miracle on 34th Street deals with a child's belief in Santa Claus - is he real, or isn't he? A skeptical little girl named Susan is convinced that Santa was made up by her parents. But when she meets the Macy's department store Kris Kringle, she's suddenly not so sure.

Vote up the top '40s fantasy movies, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section.

list ordered by

29 6
Ranker Video
Mel Blanc, Cliff Edwards, Frankie Darro Pinocchio is a 1940 American animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Productions and based on the Italian children's novel The Adventures of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi. It was the ...more

28 8
Ranker Video
It's a Wonderful Life

27 9
Ranker Video
Natalie Wood, Maureen O'Hara, Thelma Ritter Miracle on 34th Street is a 1947 Christmas film written and directed by George Seaton and based on a story by Valentine Davies. It stars Maureen O'Hara, John Payne, Natalie Wood and Edmund ...more

22 7
Ranker Video
Jean Cocteau, Jean Marais, Josette Day Beauty and the Beast is a 1946 French romantic fantasy film adaptation of the traditional fairy tale of the same name, written by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont and published in 1757 as part ...more

21 8
Ranker Video
Natalie Wood, Gene Tierney, Rex Harrison The Ghost and Mrs. Muir is a romantic fantasy film starring Gene Tierney and Rex Harrison. It is based on a 1945 novel written by Josephine Leslie under the pseudonym of R. A. Dick. In 1945, ...more

15 8
Ranker Video
Cary Grant, David Niven, Loretta Young The Bishop's Wife, also known as Cary and the Bishop's Wife, is a Samuel Goldwyn romantic comedy feature film from 1947, starring Cary Grant, Loretta Young, and David Niven in a story about an ...more

13 7
Ranker Video
Bing Crosby, Basil Rathbone, J. Pat O'Malley The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad is a 1949 animated package film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by RKO Radio Pictures. The film consists of two segments – the first is ...more

8 5
Ranker Video
Sterling Holloway, Pinto Colvig, Frank Graham The Three Caballeros is a 1944 American animated musical film produced by Walt Disney Productions. The film premiered in Mexico City on December 21, 1944. It was released in the United States on ...more

6 7
Ranker Video
Gene Tierney, Don Ameche, Charles Coburn Heaven Can Wait is a 1943 American comedy film produced and directed by Ernst Lubitsch. The screenplay was by Samson Raphaelson based on the play Birthday by Leslie Bush-Fekete. The music score ...more

5 6
Ranker Video
Walter Huston, Thomas Mitchell, Simone Simon The Devil and Daniel Webster is a 1941 fantasy film, adapted by Stephen Vincent Benét and Dan Totheroh from Benét's short story, "The Devil and Daniel Webster". The ...more

5 7
Ranker Video
David Niven, Richard Attenborough, Raymond Massey This film is a romantic fantasy film created by the British writing-directing-producing team of Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, and set in England during the WWII. It stars David Niven, ...more

3 6
Ranker Video
Claude Rains, Lloyd Bridges, Robert Montgomery Here Comes Mr. Jordan is a romantic comedy-fantasy film in which a boxer, mistakenly taken to Heaven before his time, is given a second chance back on Earth. It stars Robert Montgomery, Claude ...more

3 6
Ranker Video
Simone Simon, Jane Randolph, Sarah Selby The Curse of the Cat People is a 1944 film directed by Gunther von Fritsch and Robert Wise, and produced by Val Lewton. This film, which was then-film editor Robert Wise's first directing ...more

4 8
Ranker Video
Conrad Veidt, Sabu Dastagir, June Duprez The Thief of Bagdad is a 1940 British Technicolor Arabian fantasy film produced by Alexander Korda, and directed by Michael Powell, Ludwig Berger, and Tim Whelan, with contributions by Korda's ...more

2 6
Ranker Video
Ray Milland, Gail Russell, Donald Crisp The Uninvited is a 1944 American supernatural mystery/romance directed by Lewis Allen in his feature film debut. It is based on the Dorothy Macardle novel Uneasy Freehold. The film stars Ray ...more

1 5
Ranker Video
Maya Deren, Alexandr Hackenschmied Meshes of the Afternoon is a short experimental film directed by wife-and-husband team, Maya Deren and Alexander Hammid. The film's narrative is circular and repeats several motifs, including a ...more