Best Drama Movies of 1971

1.

A Clockwork Orange

6.7
8.3/10 IMDB

In a near-future Britain, young Alexander DeLarge and his pals get their kicks beating and raping anyone they please. When not destroying the lives of others, Alex swoons to the music of Beethoven. The state, eager to crack down on juvenile crime, gives an incarcerated Alex the option to undergo an invasive procedure that'll rob him of all personal agency. In a time when conscience is a commodity, can Alex change his tune?

Starring: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Adrienne Corri, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke, James Marcus, Michael Tarn, Carl Duering, Paul Farrell, Miriam Karlin ..
Directed by: Stanley Kubrick
Release date: 1971-12-19
2.

The Last Picture Show

5.7
8.0/10 IMDB

High school seniors and best friends, Sonny and Duane, live in a dying Texas town. The handsome Duane is dating local beauty, Jacy, while Sonny is having an affair with the coach's wife, Ruth. As graduation nears, both boys contemplate their futures. While Duane eyes the army and Sonny takes over a local business, each boy struggles to figure out if he can escape this dead-end town and build a better life somewhere else.

Starring: Timothy Bottoms, Jeff Bridges, Cybill Shepherd, Ben Johnson, Cloris Leachman, Ellen Burstyn, Eileen Brennan, Clu Gulager, Sam Bottoms, Sharon Ullrick ..
Directed by: Peter Bogdanovich
Release date: 1971-10-03
3.

Fiddler on the Roof

5.7
8.0/10 IMDB

This lavishly produced and critically acclaimed screen adaptation of the international stage sensation tells the life-affirming story of Tevye (Topol), a poor milkman whose love, pride and faith help him face the oppression of turn-of-the-century Czarist Russia. Nominated for eight Academy Awards.

Starring: Chaim Topol, Norma Crane, Leonard Frey, Molly Picon, Paul Mann, Rosalind Harris, Michele Marsh, Neva Small, Paul Michael Glaser, Ray Lovelock ..
Directed by: Norman Jewison
Release date: 1971-11-03
4.

Harold and Maude

5.6
7.9/10 IMDB

The young Harold lives in his own world of suicide-attempts and funeral visits to avoid the misery of his current family and home environment. Harold meets an 80-year-old woman named Maude who also lives in her own world yet one in which she is having the time of her life. When the two opposites meet they realize that their differences don’t matter and they become best friends and love each other.

Starring: Ruth Gordon, Bud Cort, Vivian Pickles, Cyril Cusack, Charles Tyner, Ellen Geer, Judy Engles, Shari Summers, Eric Christmas, G. Wood ..
Directed by: Hal Ashby
Release date: 1971-12-20
5.

Johnny Got His Gun

5.5
7.9/10 IMDB

Joe, a young American soldier, is hit by a mortar shell on the last day of World War I. He lies in a hospital bed in a fate worse than death - a quadruple amputee who has lost his arms, legs, eyes, ears, mouth and nose. Unbeknown to his doctors, he remains conscious and able to think, thereby reliving his life through strange dreams and memories and unable to distinguish whether he is awake or dreaming. He remains frustrated by his situation, until one day when Joe discovers a unique way to communicate with his caregivers.

Starring: Timothy Bottoms, Kathy Fields, Marsha Hunt, Jason Robards, Donald Sutherland, Charles McGraw, Sandy Brown Wyeth, Don Barry, Peter Brocco, Kendell Clarke ..
Directed by: Dalton Trumbo
Release date: 1971-08-04
6.

Walkabout

5.4
7.6/10 IMDB

Under the pretense of having a picnic, a geologist takes his teenage daughter and 6-year-old son into the Australian outback and attempts to shoot them. When he fails, he turns the gun on himself, and the two city-bred children must contend with harsh wilderness alone. They are saved by a chance encounter with an Aborigine boy who shows them how to survive, and in the process underscores the disharmony between nature and modern life.

Starring: Jenny Agutter, Luc Roeg, David Gulpilil, John Meillon, Robert McDarra, Peter Carver, John Illingsworth, Hilary Bamberger, Barry Donnelly, Noeline Brown ..
Directed by: Nicolas Roeg
Release date: 1971-07-01
7.

Straw Dogs

5.4
7.5/10 IMDB

David Sumner, a mild-mannered academic from the United States, marries Amy, an Englishwoman. In order to escape a hectic stateside lifestyle, David and his wife relocate to the small town in rural Cornwall where Amy was raised. There, David is ostracized by the brutish men of the village, including Amy's old flame, Charlie. Eventually the taunts escalate, and two of the locals rape Amy. This sexual assault awakes a shockingly violent side of David.

Starring: Dustin Hoffman, Susan George, Peter Vaughan, T. P. McKenna, Del Henney, Jim Norton, Donald Webster, Ken Hutchison, Len Jones, Sally Thomsett ..
Directed by: Sam Peckinpah
Release date: 1971-12-23
8.

Vanishing Point

5.3
7.2/10 IMDB

Kowalski works for a car delivery service, and takes delivery of a 1970 Dodge Challenger to drive from Colorado to San Francisco. Shortly after pickup, he takes a bet to get the car there in less than 15 hours.

Starring: Barry Newman, Cleavon Little, Dean Jagger, Victoria Medlin, Gilda Texter, Lee Weaver, Timothy Scott, Robert Donner, Paul Koslo, Cherie Foster ..
Directed by: Richard C. Sarafian
Release date: 1971-01-15
9.

Macbeth

5.2
7.4/10 IMDB

Scotland, 11th century. Driven by the twisted prophecy of three witches and the ruthless ambition of his wife, warlord Macbeth, bold and brave, but also weak and hesitant, betrays his good king and his brothers in arms and sinks into the bloody mud of a path with no return, sown with crime and suspicion.

Starring: Jon Finch, Francesca Annis, Martin Shaw, Terence Bayler, John Stride, Nicholas Selby, Stephan Chase, Paul Shelley, Keith Chegwin, Mark Dightam ..
Directed by: Roman Polanski
Release date: 1971-12-20
10.

Two-Lane Blacktop

5.1
7.2/10 IMDB

A driver and a mechanic travel around the United States hopping from drag strip to drag strip in a 1955 Chevy Bel-Air coupe. They race for money, betting with their competitors. The pair gain a young and talkative female stowaway. Along the way they unintentionally attract a well-to-do drifter driving a new Pontiac GTO. This older man, looking for attention, antagonizes their efforts.

Starring: James Taylor, Warren Oates, Dennis Wilson, Laurie Bird, Rudy Wurlitzer, Harry Dean Stanton, Jaclyn Hellman, Alan Vint, Katherine Squire, Bill Keller ..
Directed by: Monte Hellman
Release date: 1971-07-07

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