100 Greatest Western Movies

Criteria: These are the Greatest Western Movies chosen for their direction, script, acting, storyline, cinematography, and box office success. These films were NOT chosen for how highly rated they are overall, but how they rate in the subject of "westerns" set in the Western U.S. before the closing of the frontier in 1890, (with just a few special exceptions*).

 Title (Year - Director) (Main Actors)
1. The Searchers
(1956 - John Ford) (John Wayne, Jeffrey Hunter, Vera Miles, Natalie Wood, Ward Bond)

2. My Darling Clementine
(1946 - John Ford) (Henry Fonda, Linda Darnell, Cathy Downs, Victor Mature, Ward Bond)

3. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance
(1962 - John Ford) (John Wayne, James Stewart, Vera Miles, Lee Marvin)

4. High Noon
(1952 - Fred Zinnemann) (Gary Cooper, Grace Kelly, Lloyd Bridges, Thomas Mitchell, Katy Jurado)

5. Rio Bravo
(1959 - Howard Hawks) (John Wayne, Dean Martin, Ricky Nelson, Angie Dickinson, Walter Brennan)

6. Stagecoach
(1939 - John Ford) (John Wayne, Claire Trevor, John Carradine, Thomas Mitchell, Louise Platt)

7. Shane
(1953 - George Stevens) (Alan Ladd, Jean Arthur, Van Heflin, Jack Palance, Ben Johnson, Brandon deWilde)

8. Fort Apache
(1948 - John Ford) (John Wayne, Henry Fonda, Shirley Temple, John Agar, Ward Bond)

9. Red River
(1948 - Howard Hawks, Arthur Rosson) (John Wayne, Montgomery Clift, Joanne Dru, Coleen Gray)

10. The Wild Bunch*
(1969 - Sam Peckinpah) (William Holden, Ernest Borgnine, Robert Ryan, Edmond O'Brien)


11. The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
(1966 - Sergio Leone) (Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, Eli Wallach)

12. Wagon Master
(1950 - John Ford) (Ben Johnson, Joanne Dru, Harry Carey Jr., Charles Kemper, Ward Bond)

13. Ride the High Country
(1962 - Sam Peckinpah) (Randolph Scott, Joel McCrea, Mariette Hartley)

14. Once Upon a Time in the West
(1969 - Sergio Leone) (Henry Fonda, Charles Bronson, Claudia Cardinale)

15. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid*
(1969 - George Roy Hill) (Paul Newman, Robert Redford)


16. The Magnificent Seven
(1960 - John Sturges) (Yul Brynner, Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson)

17. Winchester '73
(1950 - Anthony Mann) (James Stewart, Shelley Winters, Rock Hudson)

18. Unforgiven
(1992 - Clint Eastwood) (Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Morgan Freeman)

19. Ride Lonesome
(1959 - Budd Boetticher) (Randolph Scott, Pernell Roberts, James Coburn)

20. The Ox-Bow Incident
(1943 - William A. Wellman) (Henry Fonda, Dana Andrews, Anthony Quinn)

21. Sergeant Rutledge
(1960 - John Ford) (Woody Strode, Jeffrey Hunter, Constance Towers)

22. The Shootist
(1976 - Don Siegel) (John Wayne, Lauren Bacall, James Stewart, Ron Howard)

23. Seven Men From Now
(1956 - Budd Boetticher) (Randolph Scott, Gail Russell, Lee Marvin)

24. The Horse Soldiers
(1959 - John Ford) (John Wayne, William Holden, Constance Towers)

25. Duel at Diablo
(1966 - Ralph Nelson) (James Garner, Sidney Poitier, Dennis Weaver)

26. Tombstone
(1993 - George P. Cosmatos) (Kurt Russell, Val Kilmer, Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton)

27. Rio Grande
(1950 - John Ford) (John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Ben Johnson, Chill Wills)

28. High Plains Drifter
(1973 - Clint Eastwood) (Clint Eastwood, Verna Bloom, Mariana Hill, Billy Curtis)

29. How the West Was Won
(1962 - Henry Hathaway, John Ford, George Marshall) (Henry Fonda, James Stewart)

30. True Grit
(2010 - Joel Coen, Ethan Coen) (Jeff Bridges, Matt Damon, Hailee Steinfeld)

31. The Tall T
(1957 - Budd Boetticher) (Randolph Scott, Richard Boone, Maureen O'Sullivan)

32. Virginia City
(1940 - Michael Curtiz) (Errol Flynn, Randolph Scott, Miriam Hopkins)

33. Hostiles
(2017 - Scott Cooper) (Christian Bale, Rosamund Pike, Wes Studi, Jesse Plemons)

34. The Outlaw Josey Wales
(1976 - Clint Eastwood) (Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke)

35. A Man Called Horse
(1970 - Elliot Silverstein) (Richard Harris, Judith Anderson)

36. Dances with Wolves
(1990 - Kevin Costner) (Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene)

37. The Naked Spur
(1953 - Anthony Mann) (James Stewart, Janet Leigh, Robert Ryan)

38. Little Big Man
(1970 - Arthur Penn) (Dustin Hoffman, Faye Dunaway, Chief Dan George)

39. True Grit
(1969 - Henry Hathaway) (John Wayne, Glen Campbell, Kim Darby, Robert Duvall)

40. Santa Fe Trail
(1940 - Michael Curtiz) (Errol Flynn, Ronald Reagan, Olivia de Havilland)

41. The Sons of Katie Elder
(1965 - Henry Hathaway) (John Wayne, Dean Martin, George Kennedy)

42. Hondo
(1953 - John Farrow) (John Wayne, Geraldine Page, Ward Bond, James Arness)

43. Wyatt Earp
(1994 - Lawrence Kasdan) (Kevin Costner, Dennis Quaid, Gene Hackman)

44. 3:10 to Yuma
(1957 - Delmer Daves) (Glenn Ford, Van Heflin, Felicia Farr, Leora Dana)

45. Bend of the River
(1952 - Anthony Mann) (James Stewart, Rock Hudson, Julie Adams, Arthur Kennedy)

46. The Westerner
(1940 - William Wyler) (Gary Cooper, Walter Brennan, Doris Davenport)

47. The Outlaw
(1943 - Howard Hughes, Howard Hawks) (Jane Russell, Jack Buetel, Walter Huston)

48. Destry Rides Again
(1939 - George Marshall) (James Stewart, Marlene Dietrich)

49. Hombre
(1967 - Martin Ritt) (Paul Newman, Fredric March, Richard Boone, Diane Cilento)

50. Johnny Guitar
(1954 - Nicholas Ray) (Joan Crawford, Sterling Hayden, Ward Bond)

51. Silverado
(1985 - Lawrence Kasdan) (Kevin Kline, Scott Glenn, Danny Glover, Kevin Costner)

52. The Long Riders
(1980 - Walter Hill) (David Carradine, Stacy Keach, Dennis Quaid)

53. The Hanging Tree
(1959 - Delmer Daves) (Gary Cooper, Karl Malden, George C. Scott)

54. The Great Northfield, Minnesota Raid
(1972 - Philip Kaufman) (Cliff Robertson, Robert Duvall)

55. Last Train from Gun Hill
(1959 - John Sturges) (Kirk Douglas, Anthony Quinn, Carolyn Jones)

56. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
(2007 - Andrew Dominik) (Brad Pitt)

57. The Alamo
(1960 - John Wayne) (John Wayne, Richard Widmark, Laurence Harvey)

58. Duel in the Sun
(1946 - King Vidor) (Gregory Peck, Joseph Cotten, Jennifer Jones)

59. They Died With Their Boots On
(1941 - Raoul Walsh) (Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Anthony Quinn)

60. The Cowboys
(1972 - Mark Rydell) (John Wayne, Roscoe Lee Browne, Bruce Dern)

61. Warlock
(1959 - Edward Dmytryk) (Richard Widmark, Henry Fonda, Anthony Quinn)

62. Dodge City
(1939 - Michael Curtiz) (Errol Flynn, Olivia de Havilland, Ann Sheridan)

63. The Bravados
(1958 - Henry King) (Gregory Peck, Joan Collins, Stephen Boyd)

64. The Gunfighter
(1950 - Henry King) (Gregory Peck, Helen Westcott, Karl Malden)

65. Gunfight at the O.K. Corral
(1957 - John Sturges) (Burt Lancaster, Kirk Douglas, Rhonda Fleming)

66. Tall in the Saddle
(1944 - Edwin L. Marin) (John Wayne, Ella Raines, Ward Bond)

67. Vera Cruz
(1954 - Robert Aldrich) (Gary Cooper, Burt Lancaster, Charles Bronson)

68. A Fistful of Dollars
(1964 - Sergio Leone) (Clint Eastwood, Marianne Koch, Gian Maria Volonté)

69. The Culpepper Cattle Co.
(1972 - Dick Richards) (Gary Grimes, Luke Askew, Billy "Green" Bush)

70. Open Range
(2003 - Kevin Costner) (Kevin Costner, Robert Duvall, Annette Bening)

71. The Big Country
(1958 - William Wyler) (Gregory Peck, Jean Simmons, Charlton Heston)

72. Nevada Smith
(1966 - Henry Hathaway) (Steve McQueen, Karl Malden, Brian Keith)

73. Billy the Kid
(1941 - David Miller) (Robert Taylor, Brian Donlevy, Ian Hunter)

74. Lonely Are the Brave
(1962 - David Miller) (Kirk Douglas, Gena Rowlands, Walter Matthau)

75. For a Few Dollars More
(1965 - Sergio Leone) (Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef)

76. Rio Lobo
(1970 - Howard Hawks) (John Wayne, Jennifer O'Neill, Jack Elam, Jorge Rivero)

77. The Man From Laramie
(1955 - Anthony Mann) (James Stewart, Arthur Kennedy, Donald Crisp)

78. Broken Arrow
(1950 - Delmer Daves) (James Stewart, Jeff Chandler, Debra Paget)

79. The Quick and the Dead
(1995 - Sam Raimi) (Gene Hackman, Russell Crowe, Sharon Stone)

80. Django
(1966 - Sergio Corbucci) (Franco Nero, Loredana Nusciak, José Bódalo)

81. Major Dundee
(1965 - Sam Peckinpah) (Charlton Heston, Richard Harris, James Coburn)

82. El Dorado
(1966 - Howard Hawks) (John Wayne, Robert Mitchum, James Caan)

83. Pony Express
(1953 - Jerry Hopper) (Charlton Heston, Rhonda Fleming, Jan Sterling)

84. Northwest Passage
(1940 - King Vidor) (Spencer Tracy, Robert Young, Walter Brennan)

85. Jesse James
(1939 - Henry King) (Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda, Randolph Scott)

86. Barbarosa
(1982 - Fred Schepisi) (Willie Nelson, Gary Busey, Isela Vega, Gilbert Roland)

87. Ten Wanted Men
(1955 - Bruce Humberstone) (Randolph Scott, Richard Boone, Jocelyn Brando)

88. Pale Rider
(1985 - Clint Eastwood) (Clint Eastwood, Michael Moriarty, Carrie Snodgress)

89. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon
(1949 - John Ford) (John Wayne, Joanne Dru, John Agar)

90. Maverick
(1994 - Richard Donner) (Mel Gibson, James Garner, Jodie Foster)

91. The Plainsman
(1936 - Cecil B. DeMille) (Gary Cooper, Jean Arthur, James Ellison)

92. 3:10 to Yuma
(2007 - James Mangold) (Russell Crowe, Christian Bale, Ben Foster)

93. Chato's Land
(1972 - Michael Winner) (Charles Bronson, Jack Palance, Richard Basehart)

94. The Big Sky
(1952 - Howard Hawks) (Kirk Douglas, Dewey Martin, Elizabeth Threatt)

95. Young Guns
(1988 - Christopher Cain) (Emilio Estevez, Kiefer Southerland, Lou Diamond Phillips)

96. Appaloosa
(2008 - Ed Harris) (Ed Harris, Viggo Mortensen, Renée Zellweger, Jeremy Irons)

97. Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid
(1973 - Sam Peckinpah) (James Coburn, Kris Kristofferson, Bob Dylan)

98. The Far Country
(1954 - Anthony Mann) (James Stewart, Ruth Roman, Harry Morgan)

99. Death Rides a Horse
(1967 - Giulio Petroni) (Lee Van Cleef, John Phillip Law, Anthony Dawson)

100. Never Grow Old
(2019 - Ivan Kavanagh) (Emile Hirsch, John Cusack, Déborah François)

10 Best Comedy Westerns

1. Blazing Saddles
(1974 - Mel Brooks) (Gene Wilder, Cleavon Little, Slim Pickens)

2. Destry Rides Again
(1939 - George Marshall) (James Stewart, Marlene Dietrich)

3. Support Your Local Sheriff
(1969 - Burt Kennedy) (James Garner, Joan Hackett)

4. McLintock!
(1963 - Andrew V. McLaglen) (John Wayne, Maureen O'Hara, Patrick Wayne)

5. The Cheyenne Social Club
(1970 - Gene Kelly) (James Stewart, Henry Fonda, Shirley Jones)

6. The Paleface
(1948 - Norman Z. McLeod) (Bob Hope, Bob Hope, Robert Armstrong)

7. Rustlers' Rhapsody
(1985 - Hugh Wilson) (Tom Berenger, G.W. Bailey, Marilu Henner)

8. The Shakiest Gun in the West
(1968 - Alan Rafkin) (Don Knotts, Barbara Rhoades)

9. Waterhole #3
(1967 - William A. Graham) (James Coburn, Carroll O'Connor, Margaret Blye)

10. Hot Lead and Cold Feet
(1978 - Robert Butler) (Jim Dale, Don Knotts, Darren McGavin)
5 Best Musical Westerns

1. Calamity Jane
(1953 - David Butler) (Doris Day, Howard Keel)

2. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers
(1954 - Stanley Donen) (Jane Powell, Howard Keel)

3. Annie Get Your Gun
(1950 - George Sidney, Busby Berkeley) (Betty Hutton, Howard Keel)

4. Cat Ballou
(1965 - Elliot Silverstein) (Jane Fonda, Lee Marvin)

5. Paint Your Wagon
(1969 - Joshua Logan) (Lee Marvin, Clint Eastwood)
5 Best Silent Westerns

1. 3 Bad Men
(1926 - John Ford) (George O'Brien, Olive Borden, Lou Tellegen)

2. The Iron Horse
(1924 - John Ford) (George O'Brien, Madge Bellamy)

3. The Winning of Barbara Worth
(1926 - Henry King) (Ronald Colman, Vilma Bánky)

4. Wild Horse Mesa
(1925 - George B. Seitz) (Jack Holt, Noah Beery)

5. Tumbleweeds
(1925 - King Baggot, William S. Hart) (William S. Hart, Barbara Bedford)
10 Best Directors of Westerns

1. John Ford
2. Anthony Mann
3. Budd Boetticher
4. Howard Hawks
5. Sergio Leone
6. Sam Peckinpah
7. Clint Eastwood
8. William Wyler
9. John Sturges
10. Delmer Daves
10 Best Actors in Westerns

1. John Wayne
2. Henry Fonda
3. Gary Cooper
4. Jimmy Stewart
5. Randolph Scott
6. Clint Eastwood
7. Gregory Peck
8. Kirk Douglas
9. Paul Newman
10. James Garner



Last Updated: 2022-07-17