Entertainment The Best Movies of 1971  

Ranker Film
5.1k votes 284 voters 6.5k views 120 items

List of the best movies of 1971, with movie trailers when available. Academy Award winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis made his big screen debut in Sunday Bloody Sunday in 1971. These top movies of 1971 are listed by popularity, so the movies with the most votes are at the top. This list consists of all different movie genres, but each film was released in 1971. You can filter this list of films that came out in 1971 for various bits of information, such as who directed the movie and what genre it is. Think the best 1971 movie isn't as high as it should be? Vote up your favorite so it will rise to the top.

This list is made up of a variety of movies, including A Clockwork Orange and The French Connection.

This list answers the questions, "What are the best movies from 1971?" and "What are the most popular movies of 1971?"

1971 was a great year for movies, since a lot of classic films were released in 1971. This is a crowd sourced list that has been voted on by many people, so these top films of 1971 aren't just one persons opinion.
list ordered by

1
97 40
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Clint Eastwood, Don Siegel, Andrew Robinson
Dirty Harry is a 1971 American action film produced and directed by Don Siegel, the first in the Dirty Harry series. Clint Eastwood plays the title role, in his first outing as San Francisco ...more

2
95 41
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Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, Fernando Rey
The French Connection is a 1971 American dramatic thriller film directed by William Friedkin and produced by Philip D'Antoni. It stars Gene Hackman, Fernando Rey, and Roy Scheider. The film was ...more

3
103 58
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Malcolm McDowell, Warren Clarke, Steven Berkoff
A Clockwork Orange is a 1971 dystopian crime film adapted, produced, and directed by Stanley Kubrick, based on Anthony Burgess's 1962 novella A Clockwork Orange. It employs disturbing, violent ...more

4
70 32
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Jeff Bridges, Cybill Shepherd, Cloris Leachman
The Last Picture Show is a 1971 American drama film directed by Peter Bogdanovich, adapted from a semi-autobiographical 1966 novel of the same name by Larry McMurtry. Set in a small town in ...more

5
84 46
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Gene Wilder, Jack Albertson, Tim Brooke-Taylor
Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory is a 1971 musical fantasy film directed by Mel Stuart, and starring Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka. The film, a film adaptation of the 1964 novel Charlie and ...more

6
62 29
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Dennis Weaver, Jacqueline Scott, Lou Frizzell
Duel is a 1971 television thriller film directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Richard Matheson, based on Matheson's short story of the same name. It stars Dennis Weaver as a terrified ...more

7
59 31
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Clint Eastwood, Donna Mills, Jessica Walter
Play Misty for Me is a 1971 American psychological thriller film, directed by and starring Clint Eastwood, in his directorial debut. Jessica Walter and Donna Mills co-star. The original music ...more

8
59 36
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John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Harry Carey
Big Jake is a 1971 Western film directed by George Sherman, written by Harry Julian Fink and Rita M. Fink, produced by Michael Wayne, edited by Harry Gerstad, starring John Wayne, Richard Boone ...more

9
53 31
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Dick Butkus, James Caan, Billy Dee Williams
Brian's Song is a 1971 ABC Movie of the Week that recounts the details of the life of Brian Piccolo, a Wake Forest University football player stricken with terminal cancer after turning pro, ...more

10
45 27
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Dustin Hoffman, David Warner, Peter Vaughan
Straw Dogs is a 1971 psychological thriller directed by Sam Peckinpah and starring Dustin Hoffman and Susan George. The screenplay by Peckinpah and David Zelag Goodman is based upon Gordon M. ...more

11
38 21
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Warren Beatty, Julie Christie, Shelley Duvall
McCabe & Mrs. Miller is a 1971 American Western film starring Warren Beatty and Julie Christie, and directed by Robert Altman. The screenplay is based on Edmund Naughton's 1959 novel McCabe. ...more

12
51 35
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Charlton Heston, Anthony Zerbe, Eric Laneuville
The Omega Man is a 1971 American science fiction film directed by Boris Sagal and starring Charlton Heston. It was written by John William Corrington and Joyce Corrington, based on the 1954 ...more

13
43 29
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James Garner, Suzanne Pleshette, Joan Blondell
Support Your Local Gunfighter is a 1971 comic western film starring James Garner, directed by Burt Kennedy, and written by James Edward Grant. The film shares many cast and crew members and plot ...more

14
51 38
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Sean Connery, Sammy Davis, Jr.
Diamonds Are Forever is the seventh spy film in the James Bond series by Eon Productions, and the sixth and final Eon film to star Sean Connery as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. The film is ...more

15
42 29
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Paul Michael Glaser, Chaim Topol, Molly Picon
Fiddler on the Roof is a 1971 American musical comedy-drama film produced and directed by Norman Jewison. It is an adaptation of the 1964 Broadway musical of the same name, with music composed ...more

16
44 32
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Ruth Gordon, Tom Skerritt, Bud Cort
Harold and Maude is a 1971 American romantic dark comedy directed by Hal Ashby and released by Paramount Pictures. It incorporates elements of dark humor and existentialist drama, with a plot ...more

17
31 19
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Jack Nicholson, Ann-Margret, Candice Bergen
Carnal Knowledge is a 1971 American comedy-drama film directed by Mike Nichols and written by Jules Feiffer. It stars Jack Nicholson, Art Garfunkel, Ann-Margret and Candice Bergen.

18
36 25
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Charlotte Rampling, Cleavon Little, Dean Jagger
Vanishing Point is a 1971 American action road movie directed by Richard C. Sarafian and starring Barry Newman, Cleavon Little, and Dean Jagger. The film is notable for its scenic film locations ...more

19
34 23
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Sylvester Stallone, Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland
Klute is a 1971 thriller film directed and produced by Alan J. Pakula, written by Andy and Dave Lewis, and starring Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland, Charles Cioffi and Roy Scheider. It tells the ...more

20
34 23
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Paula Kelly, David Wayne, Arthur Hill
The Andromeda Strain is a 1971 American science fiction film produced and directed by Robert Wise. Based on Michael Crichton's 1969 novel of the same name and adapted by Nelson Gidding, the film ...more

21
38 28
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John Cleese, Terry Gilliam, Eric Idle
And Now for Something Completely Different is a 1971 British comedy anthology film based on the television comedy series Monty Python's Flying Circus featuring sketches from the first two ...more

22
35 25
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Vincent Price, Caroline Munro, Joanna Lumley
The Abominable Dr. Phibes is a 1971 British horror film starring Vincent Price and American actor Joseph Cotten. Its art deco sets, dark humour and performance by Price have made the film and ...more

23
30 20
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Vanessa Redgrave, Oliver Reed, Gemma Jones
The Devils is a 1971 British historical drama horror film directed by Ken Russell and starring Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave. Russell's screenplay is based partially on the 1952 book The ...more

24
34 25
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Angela Lansbury, Roddy McDowall, Bruce Forsyth
This film is a 1971 American musical film produced by Walt Disney Productions and released by Buena Vista Distribution Company in North America on December 13, 1971. It is based upon the books ...more

25
42 35
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Michael Caine, Britt Ekland, Ian Hendry
Get Carter is a 1971 British film directed by Mike Hodges and starring Michael Caine, Ian Hendry, Britt Ekland, John Osborne and Bryan Mosley. The screenplay was adapted by Hodges from Ted ...more