film The Best '60s Action Movies  

Ranker Film
928 votes 256 voters 4.7k views 45 items

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

Are you a fan of action movies? If so, you’ve come to the right place. This list of the greatest 1960s action movies is full of undeniable, take no prisoners classics. With the social turmoil of the ‘60s and the rapidly-escalating conflict in Vietnam, action films took on a new role as social commentary, blended with classic American escapism.


Casual fans of the genre might think action movies are a purely American institution, but this list of the best 1960s action movies would suggest otherwise. Foreign directors produced some epic films during the ‘60s, spanning the gamut from the spaghetti westerns of Sergio Corbucci to the British James Bond films. This list features legendary Japanese director Akira Kurosawa with his masterpiece
Yojimbo. Another British classic also appears on this list: The Italian Job, starring cinema legend Michael Caine.


American audiences were treated to their fare share of homegrown action films, as well. Movies like
A Fistful of Dollars starring Clint Eastwood and The Wild Bunch, directed by Sam Peckinpah thrilled audiences in the ‘60s. Vote up the best '60s action movies below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section. 

1
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A Fistful of Dollars is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
A Fistful of Dollars Clint Eastwood, Gian Maria Volonté, Aldo Sambrell A Fistful of Dollars, titled on-screen as Fistful of Dollars, is a 1964 spaghetti western film directed by Sergio Leone and starring Clint Eastwood, alongside Gian Maria Volonté, Marianne ...more

2
43 12
Goldfinger is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Goldfinger Sean Connery, Honor Blackman, Garry Marshall Goldfinger is the third film in the James Bond series and the third to star Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. It is based on the novel of the same name by Ian Fleming. The film ...more

3
26 4
For a Few Dollars More is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
RobLein added For a Few Dollars More Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, Sergio Leone For a Few Dollars More is a 1965 Italian spaghetti western film directed by Sergio Leone and starring Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Gian Maria Volonté. German actor Klaus Kinski also ...more

4
36 11
From Russia with Love is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
From Russia with Love Sean Connery, Robert Shaw, Daniela Bianchi From Russia with Love is the second James Bond film made by Eon Productions and the second to star Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. Released in 1963, the film was produced by ...more

5
36 13
Dr. No is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Dr. No Sean Connery, Ursula Andress, Jack Lord Dr. No is a 1962 British spy film, starring Sean Connery; it is the first James Bond film. Based on the 1958 novel of the same name by Ian Fleming, it was adapted by Richard Maibaum, Johanna ...more

6
23 5
Jason and the Argonauts is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Jason and the Argonauts Honor Blackman, Patrick Troughton, Nancy Kovack Jason and the Argonauts is a 1963 British Columbia Pictures fantasy Greek Mythology feature film starring Todd Armstrong as the titular mythical Greek hero in a story about his quest for the ...more

7
29 10
The Wild Bunch is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Wild Bunch William Holden, Ernest Borgnine, Robert Ryan The Wild Bunch is a 1969 American epic Western film directed by Sam Peckinpah about an aging outlaw gang on the Texas–Mexico border, trying to exist in the changing "modern" world of ...more

8
24 7
Yojimbo is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Yojimbo Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Tatsuya Nakadai Yojimbo is a 1961 jidaigeki film directed by Akira Kurosawa. It tells the story of a rōnin, portrayed by Toshiro Mifune, who arrives in a small town where competing crime lords vie for ...more

9
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You Only Live Twice is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
You Only Live Twice Sean Connery, Donald Pleasence, Lois Maxwell You Only Live Twice is the fifth spy film in the James Bond series, and the fifth to star Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. The film's screenplay was written by Roald Dahl, and ...more

10
25 8
Where Eagles Dare is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Where Eagles Dare Clint Eastwood, Richard Burton, Michael Hordern Where Eagles Dare is a 1968 World War II action film starring Richard Burton, Clint Eastwood and Mary Ure. It was directed by Brian G. Hutton and shot on location in Austria and Bavaria. ...more

11
23 8
The Italian Job is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Italian Job Michael Caine, Benny Hill, Noël Coward The Italian Job is a 1969 British caper film, written by Troy Kennedy Martin, produced by Michael Deeley and directed by Peter Collinson. Subsequent television showings and releases on video ...more

12
24 9
Zulu is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Zulu Michael Caine, Stanley Baker, Jack Hawkins Zulu is a 1964 epic war film depicting the Battle of Rorke's Drift between the British Army and the Zulus in January 1879, during the Anglo-Zulu War. It depicts 150 British soldiers, many of ...more

The Best PG Action Movies

13
24 10
Thunderball is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Thunderball Sean Connery, Luciana Paluzzi, Claudine Auger Thunderball is the fourth spy film in the James Bond series starring Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. It is an adaptation of the novel of the same name by Ian Fleming, which ...more

14
25 11
Planet of the Apes is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Planet of the Apes Charlton Heston, Linda Harrison, James Whitmore Planet of the Apes is a 1968 American science fiction film directed by Franklin J. Schaffner and starring Charlton Heston. Roddy McDowall, Kim Hunter, Maurice Evans, James Whitmore, and James ...more

15
22 9
On Her Majesty's Secret Servic... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
On Her Majesty's Secret Service Diana Rigg, Joanna Lumley, Telly Savalas On Her Majesty's Secret Service is the sixth spy film in the James Bond series, based on the 1963 novel of the same name by Ian Fleming. Following the decision of Sean Connery to retire from the ...more

16
10 4
The Train is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Train Burt Lancaster, Jeanne Moreau, Paul Scofield The Train is a 1964 black-and-white war film directed by John Frankenheimer from a story and screenplay by Franklin Coen and Frank Davis, based on the non-fiction book Le front de l'art by Rose ...more

17
9 5
Ice Station Zebra is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Ice Station Zebra Jim Brown, Rock Hudson, Ernest Borgnine Ice Station Zebra is a 1968 cold-war era suspense and espionage film directed by John Sturges, starring Rock Hudson, Patrick McGoohan, Ernest Borgnine, and Jim Brown. The screenplay by Alistair ...more

The Best War Movies Ever

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9 5
The Professionals is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Professionals Claudia Cardinale, Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin The Professionals is a 1966 American western starring Burt Lancaster, Lee Marvin, Claudia Cardinale, Robert Ryan, and Woody Strode. The supporting cast includes Jack Palance and Ralph Bellamy ...more

19
9 5
Von Ryan's Express is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Von Ryan's Express Frank Sinatra, James Brolin, Trevor Howard Von Ryan's Express is a 1965 World War II war adventure film about a group of Allied prisoners who after Italy's armistice with the Allies in September 1943, conduct a daring mass escape by ...more

20
9 5
The Flight of the Phoenix is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Flight of the Phoenix James Stewart, Richard Attenborough, Ernest Borgnine The Flight of the Phoenix is a 1965 American drama film starring James Stewart, produced and directed by Robert Aldrich, and based on the 1964 novel The Flight of the Phoenix by Elleston Trevor. ...more

21
8 4
Our Man Flint is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Our Man Flint James Coburn, James Brolin, Lee J. Cobb Our Man Flint is a 1966 American action film that parodies the James Bond genre. The film was directed by Daniel Mann, written by Hal Fimberg and Ben Starr, and starring James Coburn as master ...more

22
8 5
The Comancheros is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Comancheros John Wayne, Lee Marvin, Jack Elam The Comancheros is a 1961 Western Deluxe CinemaScope color film directed by Michael Curtiz, based on a 1952 novel of the same name by Paul Wellman, and starring John Wayne and Stuart Whitman. ...more

The Best R-Rated Musical Drama Movies

23
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The Incredible Journey is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Incredible Journey Rex Allen, Jan Rubeš, John Drainie The Incredible Journey is a 1963 live-action Walt Disney film based on the novel, The Incredible Journey, by Sheila Burnford. Narrated by Rex Allen, the film follows the adventure of three pets, ...more

24
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It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Worl... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World Mickey Rooney, Spencer Tracy, Buster Keaton It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World is a 1963 American epic comedy film produced and directed by Stanley Kramer and starring Spencer Tracy with an all-star cast, about the madcap pursuit of $350,000 ...more

25
10 8
Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! Tura Satana, Susan Bernard, Stuart Lancaster Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! is a 1965 exploitation film directed by Russ Meyer, who also wrote the script with Jack Moran. It stars Tura Satana, Haji, and Lori Williams. The film features ...more

26
7 5
In Like Flint is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
In Like Flint James Coburn, Lee J. Cobb, Anna Lee In Like Flint is a film directed by Gordon Douglas, the sequel to the parody spy film Our Man Flint. It posits an international feminist conspiracy to depose the ruling American patriarchy with ...more

27
9 8
Battle of the Bulge is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Battle of the Bulge Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson, Robert Shaw Battle of the Bulge is an American widescreen epic war film produced in Spain that was released in 1965. It was directed by Ken Annakin. It starred Henry Fonda, Robert Shaw, Telly Savalas, ...more

Easter Eggs From Every Marvel Movie

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5 4
Danger: Diabolik is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Danger: Diabolik Michel Piccoli, Marisa Mell, Adolfo Celi Danger: Diabolik is a 1968 Italian-French action film directed by Mario Bava based on the Italian comic character Diabolik. The film is about a criminal named Diabolik who plans large scale ...more

29
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Sanjuro is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Sanjuro Toshiro Mifune, Takashi Shimura, Tatsuya Nakadai Sanjuro is a 1962 black-and-white Japanese samurai film directed by Akira Kurosawa and starring Toshiro Mifune. It is a sequel to Kurosawa's 1961 Yojimbo. Originally an adaptation of the Shūgorō ...more

30
8 8
Branded to Kill is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Branded to Kill Kōji Nanbara, Annu Mari, Isao Tamagawa Branded to Kill is a 1967 Japanese yakuza film directed by Seijun Suzuki and starring Joe Shishido, Koji Nanbara, Annu Mari and Mariko Ogawa. It was a low budget, production line number for the ...more

31
7 7
Tokyo Drifter is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Tokyo Drifter Eimei Esumi, Tamio Kawaji, Eiji Gō Tokyo Drifter is a 1966 yakuza film directed by Seijun Suzuki. The story follows Tetsuya Watari as the reformed yakuza hitman "Phoenix" Tetsu who is forced to roam Japan avoiding ...more

32
6 6
The War Wagon is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The War Wagon Sean Connery, John Wayne, Donald Sutherland The War Wagon is a 1967 Western film starring John Wayne and Kirk Douglas, released by Universal Pictures, directed by Burt Kennedy, produced by Marvin Schwartz and adapted by Clair Huffaker ...more

All Dune Characters

33
5 5
Coogan's Bluff is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Coogan's Bluff Clint Eastwood, Lee J. Cobb, Don Siegel Coogan's Bluff is a 1968 American action film directed by Don Siegel, and starring Clint Eastwood, Lee J. Cobb, Don Stroud and Susan Clark. The film marks the first of five collaborations ...more

34
6 7
The Green Berets is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Green Berets John Wayne, George Takei, Vera Miles The Green Berets is a 1968 American war film set in Vietnam, featuring John Wayne, George Takei, David Janssen, Jim Hutton and Aldo Ray, nominally based on the eponymous 1965 book by Robin ...more

35
4 5
The Sword of Doom is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Sword of Doom Toshiro Mifune, Tatsuya Nakadai, Yūzō Kayama The Sword of Doom, is a jidaigeki film released in 1966. It was directed by Kihachi Okamoto and stars Tatsuya Nakadai. It was based on the serial novel of the same title by Kaizan Nakazato.

36
3 4
Three Outlaw Samurai is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Three Outlaw Samurai Tetsurō Tamba, Mikijiro Hira, Makatari Fujiwara Three Outlaw Samurai is a 1964 Japanese chambara film by director Hideo Gosha. The film is an origin-story offshoot of the original Japanese television series of the same name. The film involves ...more

37
3 4
The One-Armed Swordsman is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The One-Armed Swordsman Jimmy Wang, Chung-Hsin Huang, Lisa Chiao Chiao One-Armed Swordsman is a 1967 Hong Kong wuxia film produced by the Shaw Brothers Studio. Directed by Chang Cheh, it was the first of the new style of wuxia films emphasizing male anti-heroes, ...more

38
3 4
Youth of the Beast is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Youth of the Beast Seijun Suzuki, Eimei Esumi, Misako Watanabe Youth of the Beast is a 1963 Japanese yakuza film directed by Seijun Suzuki. Much of the film is set in Tokyo.

39
2 3
The Mercenary is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Mercenary Jack Palance, Franco Nero, Tony Musante The Mercenary, also known as A Professional Gun, is a 1968 spaghetti western film directed by Sergio Corbucci. The film stars Franco Nero, Jack Palance, Tony Musante and Giovanna Ralli, and ...more

40
6 8
Destroy All Monsters is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Destroy All Monsters Haruo Nakajima, Kenji Sahara, Akira Kubo Destroy All Monsters, released in Japan as Kaijū Sōshingeki, is a 1968 Japanese science fiction Kaiju film produced by Toho. The ninth entry in the original Godzilla series, it stars Akira Kubo, ...more

41
5 8
North to Alaska is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
North to Alaska John Wayne, Stewart Granger, Fabian North to Alaska is a 1960 comedic Western film directed by Henry Hathaway and John Wayne. The picture stars Wayne along with Stewart Granger, Ernie Kovacs, Fabian, and Capucine. The script is ...more

42
3 6
The Brides of Dracula is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Brides of Dracula Peter Cushing, Martita Hunt, Freda Jackson The Brides of Dracula is a 1960 British Hammer Film Productions Horror film directed by Terence Fisher. It stars Peter Cushing as Van Helsing; David Peel as Baron Meinster, a disciple of Count ...more

43
2 5
Come Drink with Me is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Come Drink with Me Jackie Chan, Cheng Pei-pei, Elliot Ngok Come Drink with Me is a 1966 Hong Kong wuxia film directed by King Hu. Set during the Ming Dynasty, it stars Cheng Pei-pei and Yueh Hua as warriors with Chan Hung-lit as the villain, and ...more

44
1 5
Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Mon... is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster Takashi Shimura, Akiko Wakabayashi, Akihiko Hirata Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster, released in Japan as San Daikaijū: Chikyū Saidai no Kessen, is a 1964 Japanese crossover science fiction kaiju film produced by Toho. Directed by Ishirō ...more

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1 6
The Big Gundown is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best '60s Action Movies
The Big Gundown Lee Van Cleef, Tomas Milian, Walter Barnes The Big Gundown is a 1966 spaghetti western, written by long-time Sergio Leone collaborator Sergio Donati and directed by Sergio Sollima. The film stars Lee Van Cleef and Tomas Milian. It was ...more