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The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s 

Ranker Film
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The 1950s: in America, the decade is synonymous with rock 'n' roll, bobby socks, and the movies. If that last one didn't come to mind before, it certainly will after you read through this list. These are the very best Oscar nominated and winning movies of the 1950s, as ranked by you. These 1950s movies nominated for Best Picture make up a wide-ranging collection. Some are laugh-out-loud comedies, featuring legends like Gene Kelly and Spencer Tracy. Others are stirring dramas starring the likes of Bette Davis, Vivien Leigh, and Audrey Hepburn. Whichever flick is your favorite, you will likely agree that these Oscar-nominated 1950s movies are some of the best films of all time.

What films will you find on this list of 1950s Best Picture winners and nominees? Gloria Swanson captivated movie-goers with her portrayal of aging movie star Norma Desmond in the 1950 film Sunset Boulevard. The Billy Wilder-directed film was even nominated Best Picture. Roman Holiday is another good Oscar-nominated movie from the 1950s. Best Picture winner All About Eve gave audiences an inside look at the competitive world of contemporary Hollywood. Other great films featured on this list include A Place in the Sun, A Streetcar Named Desire, and The Quiet Man.

Which 1950s Oscar nominee should top the list? That's up to you to decide. Give your favorite films a thumbs up to move them towards the number-one spot.

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1
Sunset Boulevard is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
William Holden, Buster Keaton, Gloria Swanson

Released: 1950

Directed by: Billy Wilder

Nominated in 1950.

Sunset Boulevard—stylized onscreen as SUNSET BLVD.—is a 1950 American film noir directed and co-written by Billy Wilder, and produced and co-written by Charles Brackett. It was named after the ...more

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2
All About Eve is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Marilyn Monroe, Bette Davis, Anne Baxter

Released: 1950

Directed by: Joseph L. Mankiewicz

Won Best Picture in 1950.

All About Eve is a 1950 American drama film written and directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz, and produced by Darryl F. Zanuck. It was based on the 1946 short story "The Wisdom of Eve" by ...more

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3
12 Angry Men is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Henry Fonda, Jack Klugman, Lee J. Cobb

Released: 1957

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

Nominated in 1957.

12 Angry Men is a 1957 American drama film adapted from a teleplay of the same name by Reginald Rose. Written and co-produced by Rose himself and directed by Sidney Lumet, this trial film tells ...more

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4
The Ten Commandments is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Charlton Heston, Vincent Price, Yul Brynner

Released: 1956

Directed by: Cecil B. DeMille

Nominated in 1956.

The Ten Commandments is a 1956 American religious epic film produced and directed by Cecil B. DeMille, shot in VistaVision, and released by Paramount Pictures. It dramatizes the biblical story ...more

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5
Ben-Hur is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Charlton Heston, Jack Hawkins, Hugh Griffith

Released: 1959

Directed by: William Wyler

Won Best Picture in 1959.

Ben-Hur is a 1959 American epic historical drama film, directed by William Wyler, produced by Sam Zimbalist for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and starring Charlton Heston, Stephen Boyd, Jack Hawkins, Hugh ...more

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6
A Streetcar Named Desire... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Marlon Brando, Vivien Leigh, Karl Malden

Released: 1951

Directed by: Elia Kazan

Nominated in 1951.

A Streetcar Named Desire is a 1951 American drama film adaptation of Tennessee Williams's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 play of the same name. It is the story of a southern lady, Blanche Dubois, ...more

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7
The King and I is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
The King and I

Nominated in 1956.

8
The Quiet Man is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Barry Fitzgerald

Released: 1952

Directed by: John Ford

Nominated in 1952.

The Quiet Man is a 1952 American romantic comedy-drama film directed by John Ford. It stars John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Barry Fitzgerald, Ward Bond and Victor McLaglen. The screenplay by Frank ...more

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9
Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Elizabeth Taylor, Paul Newman, Burl Ives

Released: 1958

Directed by: Richard Brooks

Nominated in 1958.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof is a 1958 American drama film directed by Richard Brooks. It is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play of the same name by Tennessee Williams adapted by Richard Brooks ...more

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10
The Bridge on the River ... is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Alec Guinness, William Holden, Jack Hawkins

Released: 1957

Directed by: David Lean

Won Best Picture in 1957.

The Bridge on the River Kwai is a 1957 WWII epic film directed by David Lean, based on the novel Le Pont de la Rivière Kwai by Pierre Boulle. The film is a work of fiction but borrows the ...more

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11
The Diary of Anne Frank ... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Shelley Winters, Ed Wynn, Millie Perkins

Released: 1959

Directed by: George Stevens

Nominated in 1959.

The Diary of Anne Frank is a 1959 film based on the Pulitzer Prize winning play of the same name, which was based on the diary of Anne Frank. It was directed by George Stevens, with a screenplay ...more

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12
Roman Holiday is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Audrey Hepburn, Gregory Peck, Eddie Albert

Released: 1953

Directed by: William Wyler

Nominated in 1953.

Roman Holiday is a 1953 American romantic comedy directed and produced by William Wyler. It stars Gregory Peck as a reporter and Audrey Hepburn as a royal princess out to see Rome on her own. ...more

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13
From Here to Eternity is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Frank Sinatra, Burt Lancaster, Ernest Borgnine

Released: 1953

Directed by: Fred Zinnemann

Won Best Picture in 1953.

From Here to Eternity is a 1953 drama film directed by Fred Zinnemann and based on the novel of the same name by James Jones. The picture deals with the tribulations of three soldiers, played by ...more

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14
Shane is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Jack Palance, Jean Arthur, Alan Ladd

Released: 1953

Directed by: George Stevens

Nominated in 1953.

Shane is a 1953 American Technicolor Western film from Paramount. It was produced and directed by George Stevens from a screenplay by A. B. Guthrie, Jr., based on the 1949 novel of the same name ...more

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#16 of 399 The Best Western Movies Ever Made #890 of 1,646 The Most Rewatchable Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

15
On the Waterfront is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Marlon Brando, Eva Marie Saint, Rod Steiger

Released: 1954

Directed by: Elia Kazan

Won Best Picture in 1954.

On the Waterfront is a 1954 American drama film about union violence and corruption amongst longshoremen. The film was directed by Elia Kazan and written by Budd Schulberg. It stars Marlon ...more

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16
Giant is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Elizabeth Taylor, James Dean, Dennis Hopper

Released: 1956

Directed by: George Stevens

Nominated in 1956.

Giant is a 1956 American drama film, directed by George Stevens from a screenplay adapted by Fred Guiol and Ivan Moffat from the novel by Edna Ferber. The film stars Elizabeth Taylor, Rock ...more

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#131 of 399 The Best Western Movies Ever Made #1,235 of 1,646 The Most Rewatchable Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

17
High Noon is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Grace Kelly, Gary Cooper, Lee Van Cleef

Released: 1952

Directed by: Fred Zinnemann

Nominated in 1952.

High Noon is a 1952 American Western film directed by Fred Zinnemann and starring Gary Cooper. In nearly real time, the film tells the story of a town marshal forced to face a gang of killers by ...more

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18
Seven Brides for Seven B... is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Julie Newmar, Jane Powell, Howard Keel

Released: 1954

Directed by: Stanley Donen

Nominated in 1954.

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, is a musical film, photographed in Ansco Color in the CinemaScope format. The film was directed by Stanley Donen, with music by Saul Chaplin and Gene de Paul and ...more

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19
The Caine Mutiny is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Humphrey Bogart, Lee Marvin, José Ferrer

Released: 1954

Directed by: Edward Dmytryk

Nominated in 1954.

The Caine Mutiny is a 1954 American drama film set during World War II, directed by Edward Dmytryk and produced by Stanley Kramer. It stars Humphrey Bogart, José Ferrer, Van Johnson and ...more

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20
Mister Roberts is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Henry Fonda, Jack Lemmon, James Cagney

Released: 1955

Directed by: Mervyn LeRoy, John Ford, Joshua Logan

Nominated in 1955.

Mister Roberts is a 1955 American Warnercolor in CinemaScope comedy-drama film directed by John Ford and Mervyn LeRoy and features an all-star cast including Henry Fonda as Mister Roberts, James ...more

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#127 of 377 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked #37 of 214 The Greatest World War II Movies of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

21
Anatomy of a Murder is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
James Stewart, George C. Scott, Lee Remick

Released: 1959

Directed by: Otto Preminger

Nominated in 1959.

This film is a 1959 American courtroom drama film. It was directed by Otto Preminger and adapted by Wendell Mayes from the best-selling novel of the same name written by Michigan Supreme Court ...more

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22
Father of the Bride is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Elizabeth Taylor, Spencer Tracy, Joan Bennett

Released: 1950

Directed by: Vincente Minnelli

Nominated in 1950.

Father of the Bride is a 1950 American comedy film about a man trying to cope with preparations for his daughter's upcoming wedding. The movie stars Spencer Tracy in the titular role, Joan ...more

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23
Witness for the Prosecut... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Marlene Dietrich, Charles Laughton, Tyrone Power

Released: 1957

Directed by: Billy Wilder

Nominated in 1957.

Witness for the Prosecution is a 1957 American courtroom drama film set in the Old Bailey in London. The film, based on a short story by Agatha Christie, deals with the trial of a man accused. ...more
24
An American in Paris is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron, Nina Foch

Released: 1951

Directed by: Vincente Minnelli

Won Best Picture in 1951.

An American in Paris is a 1951 American musical film inspired by the 1928 orchestral composition by George Gershwin. Starring Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron, Oscar Levant, Georges Guétary, and ...more

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#866 of 1,137 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #555 of 693 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Madelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

25
Auntie Mame is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the 1950s
Rosalind Russell, Forrest Tucker, Sandra Edwards

Released: 1958

Directed by: Morton DaCosta

Nominated in 1958.

Auntie Mame is a 1958 Technicolor comedy film based on the 1955 novel of the same name by Patrick Dennis and its theatrical adaptation by Jerome Lawrence and Robert Edwin Lee. This film version ...more