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The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies 

Ranker Film
Originally by
Updated May 12, 2020 9.4k votes 1.4k voters 58.7k views 62 items

List Rules Only western films released since 1990.

The Western is a classic film genre full of grit, action, and life or death situations. While many of our favorite Western tropes are historically inaccurate, its films represent America at its most mythological. The top modern western movies build upon this tradition while amping up situations with current technology and cutting edge storylines. This is a list of recent western movies featuring everything from Django Unchained to 3:10 to Yuma to Dances with Wolves.

What new movies will you find on this list of the best modern westerns? Tombstone offers a modern twist on one of the most famous stories of the western genre. Wyatt Earp and his brothers – with a little help from Doc Holliday – star in this exciting tale of lawmen versus unruly cowboys who are terrorizing the land. Sukiyaki Western Django is another great modern western. Like that film, many ostensible Westerns have gone far beyond the Old West setting while still remaining true to the genre's roots.

Other good movies featured on this list of the top modern western films include The Proposition, Unforgiven, and Ain't Them Bodies Saints. Which modern western is the best? Decide by giving your favorites a thumbs up, and add any great movies that are missing.

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1
Tombstone is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Val Kilmer, Kurt Russell, Charlton Heston

Released: 1993

Directed by: Kevin Jarre, George P. Cosmatos

Tombstone is a 1993 American western film directed by George P. Cosmatos, written by Kevin Jarre and starring Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer, with Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton, Powers Boothe, Michael ...more

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2
Unforgiven is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Clint Eastwood, Morgan Freeman, Gene Hackman

Released: 1992

Directed by: Clint Eastwood

Unforgiven is a 1992 American Western film produced and directed by Clint Eastwood with a screenplay written by David Webb Peoples. The film portrays William Munny, an aging outlaw who takes on ...more

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3
True Grit is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Josh Brolin

Released: 2010

Directed by: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen

True Grit is a 2010 American Revisionist Western film directed by the Coen brothers, based on the 1968 novel by Charles Portis. A stubborn teenager (Hailee Steinfeld) enlists the help of a tough ...more

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#1,066 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #41 of 395 The Best Western Movies Ever Made #171 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made

4
Dances with Wolves is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Charles Rocket

Released: 1990

Directed by: Kevin Costner

Dances with Wolves is a 1990 American epic western film directed, produced by, and starring Kevin Costner. It is a film adaptation of the 1988 book of the same name by Michael Blake and tells ...more

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5
Open Range is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Kevin Costner, Robert Duvall, Annette Bening

Released: 2003

Directed by: Kevin Costner

Open Range is a 2003 American western film directed and co-produced by Kevin Costner, starring Robert Duvall and Costner, with Annette Bening and Michael Gambon appearing in supporting roles. ...more

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6
3:10 to Yuma is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Christian Bale, Russell Crowe, Logan Lerman

Released: 2007

Directed by: James Mangold

3:10 to Yuma is a 2007 western film directed by James Mangold and produced by Cathy Konrad, and stars Russell Crowe and Christian Bale in the lead roles, with supporting performances by Peter ...more

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7
Hell or High Water is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Jeff Bridges, Chris Pine, Ben Foster

Released: 2016

Directed by: David Mackenzie

Hell or High Water is a 2016 American neo-western heist-crime film directed by David Mackenzie. To save their family ranch, two brothers (Chris Pine and Ben Foster) carry out a series of bank ...more
8
Django Unchained is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson

Released: 2012

Directed by: Quentin Tarantino

Django Unchained is a 2012 American revisionist Western film directed by Quentin Tarantino. With the help of a German bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz), a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) sets out to ...more

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9
Wyatt Earp is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Kevin Costner, Gene Hackman, Téa Leoni

Released: 1994

Directed by: Lawrence Kasdan

Wyatt Earp is a 1994 American semi-biographical Western film, written by Dan Gordon and Lawrence Kasdan and directed by Kasdan. It stars Kevin Costner in the title role as lawman Wyatt Earp, and ...more

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10
The Revenant is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
gerard flynn added Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Domhnall Gleeson

Released: 2015

Directed by: Alejandro G. Iñárritu

The Revenant is a 2015 American semi-biographical epic western film directed by Alejandro G. Iñárritu. A frontiersman (Leonardo DiCaprio) on a fur trading expedition in the 1820s ...more

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11
The Assassination of Jes... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Brad Pitt, Zooey Deschanel, Jeremy Renner

Released: 2007

Directed by: Andrew Dominik

This film is a 2007 American western drama film written and directed by Andrew Dominik. Adaptated from Ron Hansen's 1983 novel of the same name, the film dramatizes the relationship between ...more

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12
Appaloosa is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Renée Zellweger, Viggo Mortensen, Jeremy Irons

Released: 2008

Directed by: Ed Harris

Appaloosa is an American western based on the 2005 novel, Appaloosa, by writer Robert B. Parker. Directed by Ed Harris and co-written by Harris and Robert Knott, Appaloosa stars Harris alongside ...more

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13
Lawless is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Jessica Chastain, Tom Hardy, Shia LaBeouf

Released: 2012

Directed by: John Hillcoat

Lawless is a 2012 American drama film directed by John Hillcoat. The screenplay by Nick Cave is based on the historical novel The Wettest County in the World by Matt Bondurant. The film stars ...more

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14
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Samuel L. Jackson, Kurt Russell, Jennifer Jason Leigh

Released: 2015

Directed by: Quentin Tarantino

The Hateful Eight is a 2015 American Western film directed by Quentin Tarantino. In a Wyoming winter, a bounty hunter (Kurt Russell) and his prisoner (Jennifer Jason Leigh) find shelter in a ...more

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15
Wind River is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Jeremy Renner, Elizabeth Olsen, Jon Bernthal

Released: 2017

Directed by: Taylor Sheridan

Wind River is a 2017 American thriller film directed and written by Taylor Sheridan (Sicario, Hell or High Water) in his directorial debut. US Fish and Wildlife Service agent Cory Lambert ...more
16
The Quick and the Dead ... is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Leonardo DiCaprio, Sharon Stone, Russell Crowe

Released: 1995

Directed by: Sam Raimi

This film is a 1995 western film directed by Sam Raimi and starring Sharon Stone, Gene Hackman, Russell Crowe and Leonardo DiCaprio. The story focuses on "The Lady", a gunfighter who ...more

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17
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Denzel Washington, Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke

Directed by: Antoine Fuqua

The Magnificent Seven is a 2016 American western action film directed by Antoine Fuqua and written by Nic Pizzolatto and Richard Wenk. It is a reimagination of the 1960 western film of the same ...more

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18
Lonesome Dove is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Trey Counce added Anjelica Huston, Timothy Scott, Robert Duvall

Released: 1989

Directed by: Simon Wincer

Lonesome Dove is a 1989 American epic Western adventure television miniseries directed by Simon Wincer. It is a four part adaptation of the 1985 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name by ...more

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19
Hatfields & McCoys ... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
gerard flynn added Kevin Costner, Tom Berenger, Bill Paxton

Released: 2012

Directed by: Kevin Reynolds

Hatfields & McCoys (History, 2012) is an American three-part Western television miniseries directed by Kevin Reynolds. Dramatization of the bitter blood feud between the two families on the ...more

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20
The Missing is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Cate Blanchett, Evan Rachel Wood, Val Kilmer

Released: 2003

Directed by: Ron Howard

The Missing is a 2003 American Revisionist Western thriller film directed by Ron Howard, based on Thomas Eidson's 1996 novel The Last Ride. The film is set in 1885 New Mexico Territory is ...more

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21
The Proposition is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
John Hurt, Ray Winstone, Emily Watson

Released: 2005

Directed by: John Hillcoat

The Proposition is a 2005 Australian western film directed by John Hillcoat and written by screenwriter and musician Nick Cave. It stars Guy Pearce, Ray Winstone, Emily Watson, John Hurt, Danny ...more
22
Lone Star is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Matthew McConaughey, Kris Kristofferson, Frances McDormand

Released: 1996

Directed by: John Sayles

Lone Star is a 1996 drama, mystery, romance film written and directed by John Sayles.

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23
Slow West is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Slow West Michael Fassbender, Kodi Smit-McPhee, Ben Mendelsohn

Released: 2014

Directed by: John Maclean

Slow West is a 2014 action thriller western film written by John Maclean and directed by John Maclean.

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24
Broken Trail is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Trey Counce added Robert Duvall, Thomas Haden Church, Greta Scacchi

Released: 2006

Directed by: Walter Hill

Broken Trail is a 2006 Western miniseries directed by Walter Hill and starring Robert Duvall and Thomas Haden Church. Written by Alan Geoffrion, who also wrote the novel, the story is about an ...more

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25
The Ballad of Buster Scr... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies
Tim Blake Nelson, Liam Neeson, James Franco

Released: 2018

Directed by: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen

The Ballad of Buster Scruggs is a 2018 American western anthology film directed by the Coen brothers. Six chapters present a different story from the wild frontier.