Entertainment

The Best Movies of 1973 

Ranker Film
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Updated September 24, 2019 5.6k votes 352 voters 8.4k views 120 items

List of the best movies of 1973, with movie trailers when available. 1973 was a tough year for martial arts fans, as Bruce Lee died before Enter the Dragon was released to theaters. These top movies of 1973 are listed by popularity, so the movies with the most votes are at the top. This list consists of all different movie genres - from Charlotte's Web to The Exorcist - but each film was released in 1973. You can filter this list of films that came out in 1973 for various bits of information, such as who directed the movie and what genre it is. Think the best 1973 movie isn't as high as it should be? Vote up your favorite so it will rise to the top.

The list you're viewing has a variety of movies, like Serpico and American Graffiti, in it.

This list answers the questions, "What are the best movies from 1973?" and "What are the most popular movies of 1973?"

1973 was a great year for movies, since a lot of classic films were released in 1973. This is a crowd sourced list that has been voted on by many people, so these top films of 1973 aren't just one persons opinion.

list ordered by
1
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Dustin Hoffman, Steve McQueen, Vic Tayback

Released: 1973

Directed by: Franklin J. Schaffner

Papillon is a 1973 prison film directed by Franklin J. Schaffner, based on the best-selling autobiography by the French convict Henri Charrière. The film stars Steve McQueen as Henri ...more

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#135 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made #204 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys

2
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Max von Sydow, Ellen Burstyn, Linda Blair

Released: 1973

Directed by: William Friedkin

The Exorcist is a 1973 American supernatural horror film directed by William Friedkin, adapted by William Peter Blatty from his 1971 novel of the same name. The book, inspired by the 1949 ...more

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#22 of 351 The Best Movies Based On Books Did A Malevolent Spirit Actually Curse 'The Exorcist' From The Get-Go?listed on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

3
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Harrison Ford, Ron Howard, Suzanne Somers

Released: 1973

Directed by: George Lucas

American Graffiti is a 1973 American coming of age comedy-drama film directed and co-written by George Lucas starring Richard Dreyfuss, Ron Howard, Paul Le Mat, Harrison Ford, Charles Martin ...more

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#414 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #40 of 217 Musical Movies With the Best Songs #218 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

4
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Burt Reynolds, Laura Dern, Ned Beatty

Released: 1973

Directed by: Joseph Sargent

White Lightning is a 1973 American action film from United Artists starring Burt Reynolds as Gator McKlusky. The film, directed by Joseph Sargent and written by William W. Norton, also starred ...more
5
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Clint Eastwood, Geoffrey Lewis, John Hillerman

Released: 1973

Directed by: Clint Eastwood

High Plains Drifter is a 1973 American film directed by and starring Clint Eastwood, written by Ernest Tidyman, and produced by Robert Daley for The Malpaso Company and Universal Studios. ...more

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#5 of 45 The Best Western Movies of the '70s #166 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys

6
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Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw

Released: 1973

Directed by: George Roy Hill

The Sting is a 1973 American caper film set in September 1936, involving a complicated plot by two professional grifters to con a mob boss. The film was directed by George Roy Hill, who had ...more

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#393 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #288 of 1,196 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

7
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Al Pacino, Judd Hirsch, Abraham Murphy

Released: 1973

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

Serpico is a 1973 American drama film directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Al Pacino. Waldo Salt and Norman Wexler wrote the screenplay, adapting Peter Maas's biography of NYPD officer Frank ...more

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#36 of 591 The Best '70s Movies #98 of 320 The Best Political Films Ever Made #58 of 101 The Best New York Movies

8
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Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung

Released: 1973

Directed by: Robert Clouse

Enter the Dragon is a 1973 Hong Kong martial arts action film directed by Robert Clouse; starring Bruce Lee, John Saxon and Jim Kelly. The film was released on 26 July 1973 in Hong Kong. He was ...more

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#709 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #60 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys

9
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Tatum O'Neal, Randy Quaid, Madeline Kahn

Released: 1973

Directed by: Peter Bogdanovich

Paper Moon is a 1973 American comedy-drama film directed by Peter Bogdanovich and released by Paramount Pictures. Screenwriter Alvin Sargent adapted the script from the novel Addie Pray by Joe ...more

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#1,218 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #325 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

10
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Jane Seymour, Roger Moore, Yaphet Kotto

Released: 1973

Directed by: Guy Hamilton

This film is the eighth spy film in the James Bond series to be produced by Eon Productions, and the first to star Roger Moore as the fictional MI6 agent James Bond. Produced by Albert R. ...more

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#337 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #60 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

11
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Joe Don Baker, Noah Beery, Jr.

Released: 1973

Directed by: Phil Karlson

Walking Tall is a 1973 American action semi-biopic film of Sheriff Buford Pusser, a former professional wrestler-turned-lawman in McNairy County, Tennessee. It starred Joe Don Baker as Pusser. ...more
12
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Clint Eastwood, Suzanne Somers, Hal Holbrook

Released: 1973

Directed by: Ted Post

Magnum Force is a 1973 American action film and the second to feature Clint Eastwood as maverick cop Harry Callahan after the 1971 film Dirty Harry. Ted Post, who also directed Eastwood in the ...more

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#83 of 180 The Best Movie Sequels Ever Made #70 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

13
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Christopher Lee, Britt Ekland, Edward Woodward

Released: 1973

Directed by: Robin Hardy

The Wicker Man is a 1973 British mystery horror film directed by Robin Hardy and written by Anthony Shaffer. The film stars Edward Woodward, Christopher Lee, Diane Cilento, Ingrid Pitt, and ...more

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#111 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time #1 of 52 The Best Horror Movies About Cults and Conspiracies

14
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Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, John Beck

Released: 1973

Directed by: Woody Allen

Sleeper is a 1973 futuristic comic science fiction film, written by Woody Allen and Marshall Brickman, and directed by Allen. The plot involves the adventures of the owner of a health food store ...more

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#917 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #525 of 1,009 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #126 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

15
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Al Pacino, Gene Hackman, Eileen Brennan

Released: 1973

Directed by: Jerry Schatzberg

Scarecrow is a 1973 road movie starring Gene Hackman and Al Pacino.

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#56 of 61 The Best Movies That Won the Palme d'Or at Cannes #21 of 45 The Best Al Pacino Movies #32 of 75 The Best Gene Hackman Movies

16
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Yul Brynner, James Brolin, Dick Van Patten

Released: 1973

Directed by: Michael Crichton

Westworld is a 1973 science fiction western-thriller film written and directed by novelist Michael Crichton and produced by Paul Lazarus III about amusement park robots that become evil after a ...more

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#444 of 624 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #81 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

17
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Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese, Harvey Keitel

Released: 1973

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Mean Streets is a 1973 film directed by Martin Scorsese and co-written by Scorsese and Mardik Martin. The film stars Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro. It was released by Warner Bros. on October ...more

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#216 of 302 The Greatest Soundtracks of All Time #41 of 591 The Best '70s Movies

18
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Jack Nicholson, Randy Quaid, Gilda Radner

Released: 1973

Directed by: Hal Ashby

The Last Detail is a 1973 American comedy-drama film directed by Hal Ashby and starring Jack Nicholson, with a screenplay adapted by Robert Towne from a 1970 novel of the same name by Darryl ...more

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#219 of 379 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #419 of 548 The Greatest Movies for Guys

19
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Walter Matthau, Norman Fell, Don Siegel

Released: 1973

Directed by: Don Siegel

Charley Varrick is a 1973 crime film directed by Don Siegel and starring Walter Matthau, Andrew Robinson, Joe Don Baker and John Vernon. The film was based on the novel The Looters by John H.
20
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Charlton Heston, Edward G. Robinson, Dick Van Patten

Released: 1973

Directed by: Richard Fleischer

Soylent Green is a 1973 American science fiction film directed by Richard Fleischer and starring Charlton Heston, Leigh Taylor-Young, and, in his final film, Edward G. Robinson. The film ...more

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#1,003 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #183 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time

21
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Lindsay Wagner, Edward Herrmann, John Houseman

Released: 1973

Directed by: James Bridges

The Paper Chase is a 1973 film starring Timothy Bottoms, Lindsay Wagner, and John Houseman, directed by James Bridges. Based on John Jay Osborn, Jr.'s 1970 novel, The Paper Chase, it tells the ...more
22
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Don't Look Now Donald Sutherland, Julie Christie, Leopoldo Trieste

Released: 1973

Directed by: Nicolas Roeg

Don't Look Now is a 1973 independent British-Italian film directed by Nicolas Roeg. It is a thriller adapted from the short story by Daphne du Maurier. Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland star ...more

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#117 of 254 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #244 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time #9 of 18 Obscure Horror Movies from the 1970s You Should Know About

23
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Debbie Reynolds, Danny Bonaduce, Henry Gibson

Released: 1973

Directed by: Charles August Nichols, Iwao Takamoto

Charlotte's Web is a 1973 American animated musical film produced by Hanna-Barbera Productions and Sagittarius Productions and based upon the 1952 children's book of the same name by E. B. ...more

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#28 of 78 The Best Film Adaptations of Young Adult Novels #102 of 590 The Best Animated Films Ever #951 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

24
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Derek Jacobi, Edward Fox, Donald Sinden

Released: 1973

Directed by: Fred Zinnemann

The Day of the Jackal is a 1973 Anglo-French thriller film directed by Fred Zinnemann and starring Edward Fox and Michael Lonsdale. Based on the 1971 novel The Day of the Jackal by Frederick ...more

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#128 of 254 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #260 of 351 The Best Movies Based On Books

25
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Charlie Sheen, Martin Sheen, Sissy Spacek

Released: 1973

Directed by: Terrence Malick

Badlands is a 1973 American film written and directed by Terrence Malick, starring Martin Sheen and Sissy Spacek. Warren Oates and Ramon Bieri are also featured. Malick has a small speaking ...more

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#22 of 26 The Best Movies with a Psychotic Main Character #15 of 18 Great Movies That Have Almost No Dialogue