Obscure-ish Movies of the 1950s

Last month, I wrote up a list of “Obscure-ish Movies of the 1940s,” inspired by Catherine of Cinema Enthusiast and her decade-by-decade viewing schedule. Now she’s moving on to the ’50s, and so am I! Below are 50 more obscure-ish movie recommendations. (I say “obscure-ish,” mind you, because obscurity is so relative.) And so you know, this list was almost dominated by Samuel Fuller, Anthony Mann, and Nicholas Ray, so you can really just pretend that the entirety of their ’50s outputs are there.


  • Caged
  • The Furies
  • Panic in the Streets
  • The Sound of Fury
  • Young Man with a Horn


  • His Kind of Woman
  • The Man from Planet X
  • The Man in the White Suit
  • The River
  • The Tales of Hoffman


  • The Marrying Kind
  • On Dangerous Ground
  • Scandal Sheet
  • The Sniper
  • Sudden Fear



  • Animal Farm
  • Hobson’s Choice
  • The Naked Jungle
  • Salt of the Earth
  • Touchez pas au grisbi


  • The Big Combo
  • Cast a Dark Shadow
  • I Live in Fear
  • The Phenix City Story
  • La Pointe Courte


  • Seven Men from Now
  • Street of Shame
  • Tea and Sympathy
  • While the City Sleeps
  • The Wrong Man


  • A Face in the Crowd
  • Forty Guns
  • The Invisible Boy
  • Tokyo Twilight
  • 20 Million Miles to Earth


  • Bell, Book and Candle
  • The Defiant Ones
  • The Horse’s Mouth
  • Man of the West
  • Murder by Contract


  • A Bucket of Blood
  • Night of the Ghouls
  • Room at the Top
  • Santa Claus
  • The Tingler


Filed under Cinema

2 responses to “Obscure-ish Movies of the 1950s

  1. dunyazad

    The 1950s were the golden age of foreign films. Some obscure-ish ones that I love:

    Giants and Toys (1958)
    Twenty-four Eyes (1955)
    Fires on the Plain (1959)
    Odd Obsession (aka Kagi, 1959)
    Los Olvidados (1950)
    The Criminal Life of Archibaldo De La Cruz (1955)
    La Notte Bianchi (1957)
    Senso (1954)
    Les Enfants Terribles (1950)

    The 50s were also the golden age of Ealing Studios, including movies that arent comedies. Some of my favorites:

    The Man in the White Suit (1951)
    The Lavender Hill Mob (1951)
    The Cruel Sea (1952)
    The Titfield Thunderbolt (1953)
    Dunkirk (1958)

    • Ooh, thanks a lot; I haven’t seen any of those foreign titles yet, though I’ve wanted to see the Buñuel, Visconti, and Ichikawa ones for a while, so this gives me something to watch, too! And I strongly agree about Ealing movies of the ’50s. It’s not Ealing, but the Alec Guinness vehicle Last Holiday is similar in spirit so I’ll throw out some love for it, too.

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