When the Motion Picture Academy looked at 1968, it gave its Best Picture Oscar to the Dickens-goes-Broadway musical Oliver! I don't dislike the movie, but...best picture? That's just perverse.
1. Je t'Aime, Je t'Aime Directed by Alain Resnais Written by Jacques Sternberg
A New Wave film -- "New Wave" as in both New Worlds and Nouvelle Vague -- about a man who comes unstuck in time. It was shot at about the same time that Kurt Vonnegut was writing Slaughterhouse-5, so presumably the writers invented the idea independently.
2. Hour of the Wolf Written and directed by Ingmar Bergman
It isn't Bergman's only horror movie -- you can make a case for classifying The Virgin Spring, Persona, even The Passion of Anna under that header -- but it's the one most deeply indebted to the genre.
3. Shame Written and directed by Ingmar Bergman
And this Bergman picture is science fiction, though hardly anyone describes it as such.
4. The Lion in Winter Directed by Anthony Harvey Written by James Goldman, from his play
"If you're a prince, there's hope for every ape in Africa." (See also #19, below.)
5. High School Directed by Frederic Wiseman
An academic dystopia.
6. Coogan's Bluff Directed by Don Siegel Written by Herman Miller, Dean Riesner, and Howard Rodman
Clint Eastwood stars as a fool of a cop who stumbles his way through a case and somehow prevails. Suspenseful, quietly funny, thoroughly anti-heroic. Siegel's best movie.
7. Night of the Living Dead Directed by George Romero Written by Romero and John Russo
It was alternately ignored and damned at the time, but would anyone disagree today that it's one of the most important pictures of the '60s?
8. Once Upon a Time in the West Directed by Sergio Leone Written by Leone and Sergio Donati, from a story by Leone, Dario Argento, and Bernardo Bertolucci
The most revisionist of the revisionist westerns.
9. 2001: A Space Odyssey Directed by Stanley Kubrick Written by Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke, from a story by Clarke
"Daiiisy, daiiiiiiiiiisy, give me your annnnnswer, dooo..."
10. Madigan Directed by Don Siegel Written by Abraham Polonsky and Howard Rodman
Much bleaker -- and better -- than the TV show it inspired.
11. Les Biches (Claude Chabrol) 12. Faces (John Cassavetes) 13. Picnic with Weissman (Jan Svankmajer) 14. Spider Baby (Jack Hill) 15. Bullitt (Peter Yates) 16. Death by Hanging (Nagisa Ohima) 17. The Flat (Jan Svankmajer) 18. Salesman (David Maysles, Albert Maysles, Charlotte Zwerin) 19. Planet of the Apes (Franklin J. Schaffner) 20. Yellow Submarine (George Dunning)