THE WILD BUNCH (1969)

A violent, nihilistic revisionist Western that changed how violence was shown on-screen.

DR. STRANGELOVE OR: HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE BOMB (1964)

A spectacular, hilarious comedy about the end of the world.

SANTA CLAUS CONQUERS THE MARTIANS (1964)

I unreservedly love this nutso sci-fi mashup, despite it being a routine entry on “worst movies of all time” lists.

GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER (1967)

A lightish drama about interracial marriage that came out the same year it became legal nationwide. But is it a good movie?

MIDNIGHT COWBOY (1969)

It earned an X-rating for its “homosexual frame of reference,” but I mostly found unrelentingly depressing.

NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (1968)

This tiny indie movie found the right metaphor for basically all of modern society’s fears and single-handedly spawned a major subgenre that’s lasted until today.

THE MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH (1964)

Roger Corman and Vincent Price team up for a movie about rich people torturing peasants and partying during a plague.

IN THE HEAT OF THE NIGHT (1967)

Sidney Poitier has to solve a murder in a small southern town that hates him. A great social movie but kind of a blah procedural.

THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE (1962)

A vast conspiracy is set to bring down the government, and only Frank Sinatra can stop it.