1968 Movies

Step into the year 1968 using our Plex database as your comprehensive guide. Consider it your dependable roadmap through a year marked by notable films and cultural shifts. We've done the legwork so you can effortlessly navigate the variety of movies that defined the year.
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Browse 1,795 titles in our 1968 Movies Database

The Best Movies of 1968

The Thomas Crown Affair

The name Steve McQueen is synonymous with an effortless kind of coolness that few can emulate. "The Thomas Crown Affair" stands as a testament to McQueen's cinematic magnetism. His portrayal of Thomas Crown, a clever conman, pulls the viewer into a web of deceit and intrigue. Although the 1999 remake starring Pierce Brosnan provided a different, more intellectual interpretation, the original has a unique appeal that even James Bond couldn't replicate.


When it comes to car chases in movies, "Bullitt" sets the bar high. Apart from McQueen's again outstanding performance, the film's car chase scene has become iconic and influenced other great chases, including the one in "The French Connection." Steven Spielberg is currently working on a fresh adaptation starring Bradley Cooper. This has piqued interest in the original film, as audiences are curious to see if Cooper can match McQueen's iconic performance.

Monterey Pop

Music documentaries owe a lot to D. A. Pennebaker, an often-overlooked filmmaker. "Monterey Pop" is a fascinating collection of performances by some of the biggest music acts of the time, such as The Who, The Mammas and Pappas, Simon and Garfunkel, among others. Pennebaker's contribution to concert filmmaking can't be overstated, and "Monterey Pop" stands as one of his finest works.

The Immortal Story

Directed by Orson Welles, "The Immortal Story" arrived more than two decades after "Citizen Kane," yet it displayed the same mastery that we have come to expect from Welles. In this film, Welles also acts, portraying a bitter merchant intent on reliving the deceits of his younger days through a complex plan. Though not as well-known as some of his other works, "The Immortal Story" is another gem in the crown of a legendary director.


Adapted from a stage play, this movie won the Best Picture Oscar and stands as an enduring example of the musical genre. Clocking in at 153 minutes, the film remains well-paced and includes musical sequences that have stood the test of time.

Night of the Living Dead

George Romero's film not only pioneered a new kind of horror but also delivered social commentary through its narrative. The movie is primarily remembered for establishing modern-day zombies and shedding light on human behavior in times of crisis, drawing parallels to social anxieties like the "Red Scare."

Once Upon a Time in the West

Directed by Sergio Leone, this film marked a departure from the director's more famous Eastwood-led trilogy. Notably, it highlighted the decline of the Western era with the birth of the railroad system. Charles Bronson's role as Harmonica stands as a high point in his acting career.

Planet of the Apes

This film is renowned for its plot twist, which remains iconic. A key contribution to science fiction, it led to a significant franchise, including four sequels and modern prequels that have received critical acclaim.

Rosemary's Baby

This film brought the idea of "prestige horror" to the forefront in the United States. Mia Farrow and John Cassavetes deliver performances that go beyond the typical archetypes in horror films. With themes related to women's issues and sexual assault, this movie is an essential addition to the horror genre.

2001: A Space Odyssey

Stanley Kubrick's magnum opus stands as an achievement in cinema history, providing viewers with a challenging narrative that demands multiple viewings. Even after 55 years, the film's space sequences are visually captivating, and the enigma of the monolith and H.A.L. continues to ignite debates.

1968 Movies & Industry Highlights

The Pioneers: Notable Films

In 1968, several movies gained critical acclaim and were also financially successful. Among these, Funny Girl, distributed by Columbia Pictures, earned the highest domestic rentals, raking in $24,900,000.

2001: A Space Odyssey, directed by Stanley Kubrick and distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, also made waves with $21,500,000 in domestic rentals. This film's impact transcended beyond just revenue, sparking discussions on human evolution, existentialism, and extraterrestrial life.

The Odd Couple and Bullitt were other box-office successes. Paramount Pictures' The Odd Couple amassed $20,000,000, while Warner Bros. Pictures' Bullitt was not far behind, earning $19,000,000.

Musical Milestones: Funny Girl and Oliver!

Both Funny Girl and Oliver! had something special—they were musicals that won big both in ticket sales and awards. Funny Girl was a platform for Barbra Streisand, who received the Academy Award for Best Actress. She shared this honor with Katharine Hepburn, lauded for her role in The Lion in Winter.

Oliver!, another product of Columbia Pictures, also had a stellar year, clinching the Academy Award for Best Picture and Best Director. With domestic rentals totaling $16,800,000, the film was a financial success as well.

Awards and Accolades

The Academy Awards recognized the exemplary storytelling and performances of 1968. The Lion in Winter, distributed by A.V.C.O. Embassy Pictures, secured Katharine Hepburn an Academy Award for Best Actress. The film also made a respectable amount at the box office, bringing in $10,006,000.

Industry Changes: The MPAA Rating System

November 1st marked a significant change within the film industry—the introduction of the MPAA's film rating system. This was a pivotal development, reshaping how films were marketed and who could attend them, thereby altering the revenue structure for years to come.

Box Office Insights

Aside from the top earners like Funny Girl and 2001: A Space Odyssey, other films made significant contributions to the box office in 1968:

  • Planet of the Apes and Rosemary's Baby, both generating $15,000,000.
  • Romeo and Juliet, raking in $14,500,000.
  • Yours, Mine and Ours, which pulled in $11,500,000.
  • The Green Berets, with earnings of $9,700,000.

These films, along with the year's top earners, contributed to an extraordinary year for cinema in terms of both revenue and storytelling.