Best Movies The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time  

Ranker Film
158 votes 31 voters 30 items

List Rules Vote up the best intelligent movies, or those that are smart, clever, etc.

If there's one genre of movies that are often naturally intelligent or smart, it'd have to be drama. Of course, not all drama films could be classified as clever, deep, or thought provoking, but the idea of a drama in general is that it typically makes you think. Much like that of psychological thrillers, these types of movies are all about evoking emotion—you know, getting to the viewer's core. In other words, some of the best dramas to date are those that draw us in and send us through a whirlwind of thought and emotion, even if that means being a real tear jerker.

When it comes to the top or most popular intelligent dramas, the first few that come to mind may be Good Will Hunting, Fight Club, or the Shawshank Redemption. While these are all certainly some of the top smart dramas, there are plenty more where those came from. Yet, what is that classifies these as the best intelligent dramas films? Perhaps it's a combination of a great story, a perfect setting, and eye-opening dialogue. Whatever it is, the list of drama films below have it, but it's up to you to decide which movie did it best.

Check out the list of intelligent drama films below and help determine just which ones are the most clever, or the smartest. You can vote up your favorites, vote down any you don't like, and even add your own choices to the list. 

list ordered by

1
9 0
Good Will Hunting is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Ben Affleck, Robin Williams, Matt Damon

2
11 1
The Shawshank Redemption is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Morgan Freeman, Rita Hayworth, Tim Robbins

3
6 2
The Departed is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson, Alec Baldwin

4
6 2
Fight Club is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Brad Pitt, Jared Leto, Helena Bonham Carter

5
4 0
Forrest Gump is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Tom Hanks, Kurt Russell, Sally Field

6
4 0
Gladiator is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Michael Sheen

7
4 0
Rain Man is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Tom Cruise, Dustin Hoffman, Valeria Golino

8
7 4
Arrival is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker

9
6 3
Hacksaw Ridge is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey

10
6 4
La La Land is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, John Legend

11
4 2
The Sixth Sense is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Bruce Willis, Mischa Barton, Haley Joel Osment

12
4 2
The Prestige is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Scarlett Johansson, David Bowie, Hugh Jackman

13
5 4
Hell or High Water is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Jeff Bridges, Chris Pine, Ben Foster

14
2 1
Seven is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Brad Pitt, Gwyneth Paltrow, Morgan Freeman

15
2 1
The Green Mile is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Tom Hanks, Gary Sinise, Sam Rockwell

16
1 0
Donnie Darko is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Drew Barrymore, Ashley Tisdale, Jake Gyllenhaal

17
1 0
The Truman Show is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Jim Carrey, Paul Giamatti, Ed Harris

18
5 5
Sicario is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Laureano Olivares, Gledys Ibarra

19
4 4
The Legend of 1900 is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Tim Roth, Bill Nunn, Pruitt Taylor Vince

20
2 2
Full Metal Jacket is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Stanley Kubrick, Vincent D'Onofrio, R. Lee Ermey

21
1 1
Crash is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Sandra Bullock, Brendan Fraser, Ludacris

22
1 1
Looper is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Bruce Willis, Emily Blunt, Joseph Gordon-Levitt

23
1 1
The Notebook is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Rachel McAdams, Ryan Gosling, James Garner

24
1 1
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotle... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst, Jim Carrey

25
1 1
The Machinist is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Michael Ironside

26
0 0
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nes... is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito, Christopher Lloyd

27
1 2
American Psycho is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Reese Witherspoon, Christian Bale, Willem Dafoe

28
0 1
A Beautiful Mind is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Jennifer Connelly, Russell Crowe, Ron Howard

29
3 5
Bridge of Spies is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Tom Hanks, Mark Rylance, Amy Ryan

30
2 4
Saving Private Ryan is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Intelligent Dramas of All Time
Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Vin Diesel