vote on everything
Watchworthy
94 voters

Great Movies About Sad Bastards

Updated June 14, 2019 747 votes 94 voters 2.0k views25 items

List RulesVote up your favorite films about pathetic old (or young!) men who are also kind of dicks.

Sad bastards make entertaining film characters. Whether they're crotchety old men, depressed husbands, or disgruntled students, they're a blast to watch on screen. This is a list of the greatest movies about lonely men including everything from Nebraska to The Wrestler to Her.

What films will you find on this list of good movies about sad bastards? In American Beauty, Kevin Spacey plays Lester Burnham, an unhappy executive who feels trapped until he begins taking drastic steps to shake up his life. Adaptation is another great movie about a sad man trying to connect with the world around him. Ben Stiller plays the entertaining, yet off-putting, title character in Noah Baumbach's Greenberg. Other good films about sad bastards include High Fidelity, Lars and the Real Girl, and Broken Flowers.

Which sad bastard movie makes your must-watch list? Give your favorites a thumbs up and please add any titles that are missing.

Photo:
...more
  • 1
    Falling Down is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    52
    8

    Falling Down

    Robert Duvall, Michael Douglas

    Released1993

    Directed byJoel Schumacher

    Falling Down is a 1993 drama film directed by Joel Schumacher and written by Ebbe Roe Smith.... more on Wikipedia

    More Falling Down 

    #263 of 457 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time#19 of 25 Great Movies About Very Dark Heroes

  • 2
    Punch-Drunk Love is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    35
    11

    Punch-Drunk Love

    Adam Sandler, Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Released2002

    Directed byPaul Thomas Anderson

    Punch-Drunk Love is a 2002 romantic comedy-drama film written and directed by Paul Thomas... more on Wikipedia
  • 3
    Barton Fink is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    26
    7

    Barton Fink

    John Goodman, Steve Buscemi

    Released1991

    Directed byEthan Coen, Joel Coen

    Barton Fink is a 1991 American period film written, produced, directed and edited by the Coen... more on Wikipedia

    More Barton Fink 

    #941 of 1,137 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time#208 of 252 The Funniest '90s Movies

  • 4
    Her is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    28
    10

    Her

    Scarlett Johansson, Olivia Wilde

    Released2013

    Directed bySpike Jonze

    Her is a 2013 American romantic science fiction comedy-drama film written, directed, and... more on Wikipedia

    More Her 

    #551 of 1,189 Every Oscar Winning Film Ever#25 of 50 Every Movie Coming To Netflix In October 2020

  • 5
    One Hour Photo is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    29
    12

    One Hour Photo

    Robin Williams, Connie Nielsen

    Released2002

    Directed byMark Romanek

    One Hour Photo is a 2002 American psychological thriller film written and directed by Mark... more on Wikipedia

    More One Hour Photo 

    #84 of 242 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time#42 of 144 The Best and Scariest Psychological Thrillers of All Time

  • 6
    Lars and the Real Girl is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    21
    7

    Lars and the Real Girl

    Ryan Gosling, Emily Mortimer

    Released2007

    Directed byCraig Gillespie

    Lars and the Real Girl is a 2007 comedy-drama film directed by Craig Gillespie. A sweet but... more on Wikipedia

    More Lars and the Real Girl 

    #11 of 75 50+ Quirky Romance Movies That Are Unique in Their Own Way#10 of 51 Great Quirky Movies for Grown-Ups

  • 7
    Adaptation is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    21
    13

    Adaptation

    Nicolas Cage, Meryl Streep

    Released2002

    Directed bySpike Jonze

    Adaptation is a 2002 American comedy-drama metafilm directed by Spike Jonze and written by... more on Wikipedia
  • 8
    About Schmidt is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    18
    13

    About Schmidt

    Jack Nicholson, Kathy Bates

    Released2002

    Directed byAlexander Payne

    About Schmidt is a 2002 American comedy-drama film directed by Alexander Payne, starring Jack... more on Wikipedia

    More About Schmidt 

    #27 of 39 Great Movies About the Death of a Spouse#15 of 23 Movies You Never Expected To Show Skin

  • 9
    The Lobster is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    23
    20

    The Lobster

    Colin Farrell, Rachel Weisz

    Released2015

    Directed byYorgos Lanthimos

    The Lobster is a 2015 science fiction romantic comedy-drama film directed by Greek director... more on Wikipedia

    More The Lobster 

    #305 of 336 The Greatest Movies in World Cinema History#37 of 136 The Very Best Movies of 2016, Ranked

  • 10
    High Fidelity is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    14
    10

    High Fidelity

    Catherine Zeta-Jones, Bruce Springsteen

    Released2000

    Directed byStephen Frears

    High Fidelity is a 2000 American comedy-drama film directed by Stephen Frears and starring... more on Wikipedia

    More High Fidelity 

    #1033 of 1,647 The Most Rewatchable Movies#181 of 364 The Best Movies Based On Books

  • 11
    Frank is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    12
    8

    Frank

    Michael Fassbender, Maggie Gyllenhaal

    Released2014

    Directed byLenny Abrahamson

    Frank is a 2014 comedy-drama film directed by Lenny Abrahamson and starring Domhnall Gleeson,... more on Wikipedia
  • 12
    American Beauty is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    25
    25

    American Beauty

    Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening

    Released1999

    Directed bySam Mendes

    American Beauty is a 1999 American drama film directed by Sam Mendes. An advertising executive... more on Wikipedia

    More American Beauty 

    #36 of 46 Movies That Won Best Picture at the Oscars and Golden Globes#557 of 836 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Made

  • 13
    The Weather Man is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    12
    9

    The Weather Man

    Nicolas Cage, Michael Caine

    Released2005

    Directed byGore Verbinski

    The Weather Man is a 2005 American comedy-drama film, directed by Gore Verbinski. Written by... more on Wikipedia

    More The Weather Man 

    #9 of 12 12 Bad Nicolas Cage Movies That Are Actually Good#6 of 30 The Worst Movies With Great Trailers

  • 14
    Broken Flowers is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    9
    8

    Broken Flowers

    Sharon Stone, Bill Murray

    Released2005

    Directed byJim Jarmusch

    Broken Flowers is a 2005 French-American comedy-drama film written and directed by Jim... more on Wikipedia

    More Broken Flowers 

    #230 of 299 The Greatest Soundtracks of All Time#194 of 316 Movies with the Best Soundtracks

  • 15
    The Wrestler is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    20
    23

    The Wrestler

    Evan Rachel Wood, Mickey Rourke

    Released2008

    Directed byDarren Aronofsky

    The Wrestler is a 2008 American sports drama film directed by Darren Aronofsky, written by... more on Wikipedia

    More The Wrestler 

    #146 of 276 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry#95 of 204 The Best Drug Movies of All Time

  • 16
    The Machinist is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    11
    11

    The Machinist

    Christian Bale, Jennifer Jason Leigh

    Released2004

    Directed byBrad Anderson

    The Machinist is a 2004 English-language Spanish psychological thriller film directed by Brad... more on Wikipedia
  • 17
    Nebraska is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    15
    17

    Nebraska

    Bruce Dern, Will Forte

    Released2013

    Directed byAlexander Payne

    Nebraska is a 2013 American comedy-drama black-and-white road film directed by Alexander Payne... more on Wikipedia
  • 18
    Death of a Salesman is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    9
    10

    Death of a Salesman

    Dustin Hoffman, John Malkovich

    Released1985

    Directed byVolker Schlöndorff

    Death of a Salesman is a 1985 CBS made for television film directed by Volker Schlöndorff,... more on Wikipedia

    More Death of a Salesman 

    #6 of 84 The Best Movies Based on Plays#14 of 36 The Best Dustin Hoffman Movies

  • 19
    American Splendor is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    14
    17

    American Splendor

    Paul Giamatti, Josh Hutchersonm

    Released2003

    Directed byRobert Pulcini, Shari Springer Berman

    American Splendor is a 2003 American biographical comedy-drama film about Harvey Pekar, the... more on Wikipedia
  • 20
    Anomalisa is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    10
    12

    Anomalisa

    Jennifer Jason Leigh, David Thewlis

    Released2015

    Directed byDuke Johnson, Charlie Kaufman

    Anomalisa is a 2015 American stop-motion animated comedy-drama film directed by Charlie... more on Wikipedia
  • 21
    He Was a Quiet Man is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    5
    12

    He Was a Quiet Man

    Elisha Cuthbert, William H. Macy

    Released2007

    Directed byFrank Cappello

    He Was a Quiet Man is a 2007 drama film, written and directed by Frank Cappello. Produced by... more on Wikipedia
  • 22
    Chapter 27 is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    5
    15

    Chapter 27

    Lindsay Lohan, Jared Leto

    Released2007

    Directed byJarrett Schaefer

    Chapter 27 is a 2007 biographical film depicting the murder of John Lennon by Mark David... more on Wikipedia
  • 23
    A Serious Man is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    5
    18

    A Serious Man

    Simon Helberg, Richard Kind

    Released2009

    Directed byEthan Coen, Joel Coen

    A Serious Man is a 2009 dark comedy written, produced, edited and directed by Joel and Ethan... more on Wikipedia

    More A Serious Man 

    #62 of 63 Movies You Wish You Could Still Watch for the First Time#13 of 18 The Best Coen Brothers Films

  • 24
    Love Liza is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    3
    12

    Love Liza

    Kathy Bates, Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Released2002

    Directed byTodd Louiso

    Love Liza is a 2002 tragicomedy film directed by Todd Louiso and starring Philip Seymour... more on Wikipedia
  • 25
    Greenberg is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Great Movies About Sad Bastards
    2
    15

    Greenberg

    Ben Stiller, Jennifer Jason Leigh

    Released2010

    Directed byNoah Baumbach

    Greenberg is a 2010 American comedy-drama film written and directed by Noah Baumbach. The film... more on Wikipedia
FilmsFilmEntertainmenttop 25