50 Best Dramas ...

DRAMA MOVIES have the magical ability to lure you in and make you feel like you're actually part of the character's lives. I for one am glued to the screen when watching a drama movie unfold. There is no better remedy for a boring evening than a good drama movie. And if you agree with me, you are going to love this list of the BEST DRAMA MOVIES. So clear out your evening, cuddle with your partner, grab your favorite snacks and a box of tissues, and pick from our amazing list of the best drama movies ever! You will not be disappointed.

1. Citizen Kane (1941)

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Budget: $0.8 millions
Category: Drama, Mystery
Leading Cast: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Dorothy Comingore, Ruth Warrick
The world is divided in those that have watched Citizen Kane and those that haven't. I remember having to watch this movie as part of a Cinema class I took one semester and thank God I did. It truly is one of the greatest movies of all times! Like many say, Orson Welles's first was undoubtedly his finest.
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2. The Godfather (1972)

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Budget: $6 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
Leading Cast: Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, James Caan, Abe Vigoda
How many times have you met men who swear by The Godfather and wondered what the big deal was. I was a non believer till an ex boyfriend made me watch it and trust me you don't have to be a man to appreciate a powerful film such as this! And I don't even like mafia movies...
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3. Casablanca (1942)

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Budget: $0.95 millions
Category: Drama, Romance
Leading Cast: Humphrey Bogart, Ingrid Bergman, Paul Henreid
I don't think I'll ever get sick of watching Casablanca. Infact, it only gets better each time I watch it. Here's an everlasting romantic drama that I'm sure is as close to everyone's heart as it is to mine.
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4. Gone with the Wind (1939)

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Budget: $3.9 millions
Category: Drama, War
Leading Cast: Thomas Mitchell, Barbara O'Neil, Vivien Leigh
I love melodramatic, turbulent love stories! And Gone with the Wind tops the list for me. The already powerful characters from the book are enhanced by powerful performances by Vivien Leigh and Clark Gable. Just a word of warning for the restless: It is 4 hours long but if you love it as much as I did, you won't even notice it. I promise. :)
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5. Schindler's List (1993)

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Budget: $25 millions
Category: Biography, Drama
Leading Cast: Liam Neeson, Ben Kingsley, Ralph Fiennes
Although, there's an abundance of movies and books that deal with the Holocaust, Schindler's List will remain one of my favorites. Sometimes hard to watch, sensitive and devastating, this Speilberg classic is sure to strike a chord in your heart.
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6. The Shawshank Redemption (1994)

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Budget: $25 millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: Tim Robbins, Morgan Freeman, Bob Gunton
Prison movies are not my thing at all. The only reason I watched Shawshank Redemption was because it's my all time favorite Stephen King book. I still like the book better but that doesn't take away from the masterpiece that this movie is. Brilliant performances in a simple but touching story. Watch the movie before you read the book and I bet it will become one of your favorites!
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7. Forrest Gump (1994)

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Budget: $55 millions
Category: Drama, Comedy
Leading Cast: Tom Hanks, Robin Wright Penn, Gary Sinise
Awww! Who hasn't bawled their eyes out while watching this touching tale of a simple man's journey through a wonderful life. Robin Wright shines as the tragic Jenny and while Tom Hanks is a great actor, this to me is his best perfomance till date.
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8. 12 Angry Men (1957)

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Budget: $0.34 millions
Category: Drama, Mystery
Leading Cast: Henry Fonda, Lee J. Cobb, Ed Begley, Jack Warden
Honestly I'm always skeptical of court room dramas simply because I'm scared of too many words and too little action.But if the ratings of this movie are anything to go by, I may just change my mind. Have any of you watched it?
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9. One Flew over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975)

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Budget: $4.4 millions
Category: Drama, Comedy
Leading Cast: Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Peter Brocco
Jack Nicholson is a fine fine actor under all his craziness and you can expect nothing else from his role in this inpsiring movie that won the 'top five' Oscars back in the day. Every one of them well deserved!
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10. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)

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Budget: $2 millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: Gregory Peck, Mary Badham, Phillip Alford
As you may have figured out, I love my books and I think this movie is a great adaptation of a much loved book. The children are naturals, Gregory Peck is amazing as Atticus, emotional yet strong. All in all I'd say, what a memorable way to bring this book to life!
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11. American History X (1998)

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Budget: $10 millions
Category: Drama, Crime
Leading Cast: Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly D'Angelo
I know what you're thinking, movies with racism as their subject could very easily become preachy and cliche but Edward Norton's brilliant performance makes sure this movie never gets boring. A powerful story about second chances and how sometimes the truth couldn't be further from what you've believed in all your life.
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12. Requiem for a Dream (2000)

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Budget: $4.5 millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: Ellen Burstyn, Jared Leto, Jennifer Connelly
I remember watching this with a friend and feeling completely disturbed and depressed afterwards. But I loved this movie in all of its haunting sadness. Some heart breaking performances from a movie that captures reality in all its brutal nudity.
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13. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)

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Budget: $35 millions
Category: Drama, Romance
Leading Cast: Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Gerry Robert Byrne
A modern day fairytale if you may of love that's meant to be. Wacky, creative and original, you will love this one if you are a romantic at heart like I am. My favorite performance of Jim Carrey (considering I don't like his "funny" movies much) and a delightful performance by Kate Winslet (as always!)
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14. The Godfather Part II (1974)

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Budget: $13 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
Leading Cast: Al Pacino, Robert Duvall, Diane Keaton
Many say that this is the greatest movie sequel ever made and I have to agree! Outstanding perfomances by Al Pacino and Robert De Niro. Like I said before, mafia movies are not my cup of tea but when it comes to The Godfather trilogy, I'm a loyal fan (okay maybe not so much of Part III).
It's a crime really that Al Pacino didn't win the Academy Award for this one.
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15. Sunset Boulevard (1950)

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Budget: $1.75 millions
Category: Drama, Film-Noir
Leading Cast: William Holden, Gloria Swanson, Nancy Olson
A movie that highlights the struggles of tinsel town and how time can brutally take away fame and glory and leave you with nothing. It's a touching movie that will make you care for it's tragic characters. Classic Wilder movie!
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16. On the Waterfront (1954)

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Budget: $0.91 millions
Category: Crime, Romance
Leading Cast: Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, Lee J. Cobb
Baseline:Noone wins a war. Even though historically inaccurate, Apocalypse Now is quite possibly one of the greatest war movies ever made. Watch it once and I guarantee that it will become one of those movies that you'll end up watching many many times...just because...
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17. Apocalypse Now (1979)

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Budget: $31.5 millions
Category: Action, Drama
Leading Cast: Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall, Martin Sheen
Here's another movie that I have been meaning to watch ever since I heard a friend rave on about it. Marlon Brando would be reason enough. This one is bound to be drama at it's best!
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18. It's a Wonderful Life (1946)

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Budget: $3.18 millions
Category: Drama, Fantasy
Leading Cast: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore
There's a reason why this movie is part of many Christmas traditions all over. A feel good movie that will make you smile and feel all warm inside. At it's base, it is a fantasy but whether or not you believe in angels, I guarantee you will love this film!
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19. Vertigo (1958)

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Budget: $2.48 millions
Category: Drama, Mystery
Leading Cast: James Stewart, Kim Novak, Barbara Bel Geddes
If I were to ever make a movie, Alfred Hitchcock would be my inspiration! Never one to stick to a tried and tested formula...constantly experimenting, constantly dazzling! Vertigo is one of his finest movies..dramatic and suspenseful enough to keep you on the edge of your seats and thourougly entertaining with a haunting soundtrack. What else could you ask of a film?
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20. Amadeus (1984)

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Budget: $18 millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: F. Murray Abraham, Tom Hulce, Elizabeth Berridge
Amadeus mixes fact and fiction to treat you to an epic battle of sorts between the two music geniuses Salieri and Mozart. Ofcourse, we've all been jealous at some point of someone better and this film beautifully highlights jealousy and the depths humans are capable of falling to. Like I always say there's nothing wrong with being meidocre. Afterall, it's thanks to us mediocre people that the geniuses really stand out right? ;)
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21. A Clockwork Orange (1971)

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Budget: $2.2 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
Leading Cast: Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates
If gore isn't your thing, then Clockwork Orange isn't either. But if you want to give it a chance, all I want to say is that this is not just another gore fest like say Saw (although God knows I love Saw and every movie like it).This is far more thought-provoking and deep and sure to be a cinematic experience that you'll never forget.
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22. The Pianist (2002)

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Budget: $35 millions
Category: Drama, War
Leading Cast: Adrien Brody, Thomas Kretschmann, Frank Finlay
I know what you're thinking..."Oh no! Not another Holocaust movie!" But trust me, The Pianist is anything but. The true story of Wladyslaw Szpilman is brilliantly portrayed by Adrien Brody...undoubtedly his best perfomance till date! Schindler's list is up there for me as far as Holocaust movies go but this is a close second. All in all a heautiful and riveting movie of the beauty of music even in the most vile situations.
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23. American Beauty (1999)

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Budget: $15 millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: Kevin Spacey, Annette Bening, Thora Birch
The beauty of this movie is how easily you will associate yourself with each of the characters at some or the other point in the movie. American Beauty is a dark but enthralling film that will force you to think long after you've watched it. Or is it just me?
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24. Henry V (1989)

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Budget: $9 millions
Category: Action, Drama
Leading Cast: Derek Jacobi, Kenneth Branagh, Simon Shepherd
Men in ancient war clothes make me very happy :) That's not the only reason this movie's made it on this list though I promise. Henry V is spectacular and dramatic with a moving soundtrack that literally breathes life into Shakespeare's words. If you love Shakespeare, you will love this adaptation of his work!
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25. Hamlet (1996)

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Budget: $18 millions
Category: Drama, Crime
Leading Cast: Riz Abbasi, Kenneth Branagh, Kate Winslet
This movie may be four hours long but how else are you going to accomodate all the intricate details that make Hamlet what it is.Those with the patience and passion to sit through this will love it for sure!
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26. Chinatown (1974)

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Budget: $6 millions
Category: Crime, Mystery
Leading Cast: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston
If you love fast-paced detective tales, you will love Chinatown! Coming from an era when film-noir was at it's bleakest, this film is an engaging rollercoaster right fom the start, one that you will not want to get off anytime soon.
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27. Pulp Fiction (1994)

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Budget: $8 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
Leading Cast: John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Tim Roth, Amanda Plummer
Ah! I love Tarantino in all his wacky glory! Pulp Fiction is simply put a masterpiece. Enjoy the witty dialogues, the bizarre sense of humor, the soundtrack and the violence and believe me when I say that this is perhaps the best movie with multiple plots!
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28. RashΡ„mon (1950)

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Budget: $0.25 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
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Rashomon is a tale of the same story told from the perspective of different characters that leaves you wondering what the truth is afterall. Much like real life don't you think? This one is an amazing foreign film that will appeal to all because it is a simple story made wonderfully!
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29. Goodfellas (1990)

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Budget: $25 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
Leading Cast: Robert De Niro, Ray Liotta, Joe Pesci, Chuck Low
This one is a fast-paced, violent mobster movie that will make sure that your eyes don't blink for a single second.Great soundtrack (I'm a sucker for good music in films), brilliant camera work and all in all one of Martin Scorsese's finest works.
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30. Shakespeare in Love (1998)

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Budget: $25 millions
Category: Drama, Romance
Leading Cast: Gwyneth Paltrow, Geoffrey Rush, Joseph Fiennes
I enjoy period films but what gives this one an edge is the comedy aspect. I love the whole idea that the master of tragic love stories is entwined in one of his own. Great performances and a charming story make this one a must-watch!
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31. All about Eve (1950)

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Budget: $ millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: Bette Davis, Anne Baxter, George Sanders
I watched it after reading the tagline:It's all about women- and their men! I'm in love with the snappy dialogues and the brilliant performances by Anne Baxter, Bette Davis and George Sanders. In Bette's words,this was indeed one bumpy ride!
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32. Dances with Wolves (1990)

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Budget: $19 millions
Category: Adventure, Drama
Leading Cast: Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene
Honestly, this movie doesn't sound like something that I would enjoy but that's purely a personal bias. Why I am putting this on the list is because a few of my friends swear by it! It is a heartwarming tale of an outcast who finds home amidst nature and the natives of the land. Beautiful cinematography and an even better performance by Kevin Costner...
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33. Romeo & Juliet (1968)

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Budget: $ millions
Category: Drama, Romance
Leading Cast: Leonard Whiting, Olivia Hussey, John McEnery
Who doesn't love the tale of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet?! I've watched the '96 Baz Luhrmann version and enjoyed it but this version is an altogether different experience. Many call it the best onscreen adaptation of Shakespeare's play and I have to agree. It's touching and true and very lovable!
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34. What's Eating Gilbert Grape (1993)

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Budget: $11 millions
Category: Comedy, Drama
Leading Cast: Johnny Depp, Leonardo DiCaprio, Juliette Lewis
Johnny Depp is one of my favorite actors of all time and as usual he was wonderful but Leonardo stole the show by miles! He was brilliantly believable and if I hadn't known who he was, I might have even believed that he was special in real life. A simple,endearing story about a dysfunctional family that in some way we can all associate with.
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35. Big Fish (2003)

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Budget: $70 millions
Category: Drama, Fantasy
Leading Cast: Ewan McGregor, Albert Finney, Billy Crudup
Think Tim Burton and you're bound to think dark, twisted, quirky tales. Big Fish may be none of those things but is still captivativing and touching.There have been many great father-son tales and this one is up there among my favorites.
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36. Lawrence of Arabia (1962)

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Budget: $12 millions
Category: Adventure, War
Leading Cast: Peter O'Toole, Alec Guinness, Anthony Quinn
Here's something I read about the movie online before I watched it and think is important for you to read too: Remember that this was before the days of CGI and other fancy technological advancements. As long as you remember that, you're sure to enjoy this amazing movie! It's an epic experience that will leave you wanting more!
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37. Raging Bull (1980)

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Budget: $18 millions
Category: Drama
Leading Cast: Robert De Niro, Cathy Moriarty, Joe Pesci
What elevated this film in my eyes was not only Robert De Niro's brilliant performance but his physical transformation as well. He lost 60 pounds to play LaMotta! Incredible huh? An amazing tale of one man's journey from being one of the greatest boxers to just another face in the crowd.And the only person he has to blame is himself...
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38. Modern Times (1936)

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Budget: $1.5 millions
Category: Comedy
Leading Cast: Charles Chaplin, Paulette Goddard, Henry Bergman
It's Charlie Chaplin. Need I say more? The iconic 'Little Tramp' makes his final appearance in this movie which in true Chaplin style is funny yet deep. A befitting end to the silent movie era.
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39. Reservoir Dogs (1992)

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Budget: $1.2 millions
Category: Crime, Drama
Leading Cast: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen
It's no wonder with a debut like Reservoir Dogs that Tarantino went on to become one of the greatest film makers of our times.All the memorable characters and the juicy violence make this a BLOODY classic :)
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40. Taxi Driver (1976)

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Budget: $1.3 millions
Category: Drama, Thriller
Leading Cast: Robert De Niro, Cybill Shepherd, Peter Boyle
Travis Bickle is quite possibly the loneliest character I have ever seen onscreen. I guess in today's world all of us can relate to the feeling of being alone even when surrounded by people. The movie is an emotional masterpiece. Makes me wonder if extreme loneliness can infact make you insane.
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41. 2001: a Space Odyssey (1968)

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Budget: $10.5 millions
Category: Sci-Fi
Leading Cast: Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester
This is not just a good science-fiction film but one that was far far ahead of it's time. It's hard not to appreciate the vision that went into making this film.The only sad thing is our 2001 looked nothing like the 2001 in this movie. Alas!
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42. Paths of Glory (1957)

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Budget: $0.94 millions
Category: Drama, War
Leading Cast: Kirk Douglas, Ralph Meeker, Adolphe Menjou
I haven't watched this movie yet but an anti- war movie with no signs of the enemy sounds pretty interesting to me.The basic message is that the greatest "enemy" is often within us and that is harder to beat than anything else. I know what I'm renting next!
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43. Rebecca (1940)

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