The five best Faye Dunaway movies were filmed between 1967 and 1981, but they all hold up as classics in the history of cinema. Many film historians call the '70s the “Golden Age of Movies,” and Dunaway’s roles had a big part in making many of these movies timeless.
- “Chinatown” (1974). As Evelyn Mulwray, Faye Dunaway gave the silver screen an iconic, tragic character caught in a deadly game spun by those closest to her. “Chinatown” is easily in the top 100 movies of all time due not only to its stellar direction and performance by Jack Nicholson and the supporting cast, but because of Dunaway’s portrayal of a woman on the run from her own family. As far as Faye Dunaway movies go, “Chinatown” ranks very near the top.
- “Bonnie & Clyde” (1967). This Faye Dunaway movie was her big breakout role. Playing Bonnie Parker, one-half of real-life Depression-era bank robbers Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, Dunaway turned heads and made the Hollywood establishment take notice of her acting chops. She was nominated for an Academy Award for this role, while the movie itself routinely appears on many top 100 movie lists.
- “Network” (1976). In this Faye Dunaway movie, Dunaway plays Diana Christensen, a ruthless television executive. Christensen will stop at nothing to grab the highest ratings on TV, going so far as to produce a show based on terrorists that includes an arrangement made with an American terrorist group. To Diana Christensen, television is reality. Dunaway’s portrayal was one of the many roles that made this film one of the best in 1976, and snagged Best Actress honors for Dunaway.
- “Mommie Dearest” (1981). In one of her last high-profile screen appearances, Dunaway stars in the biographical “Mommie Dearest” as Joan Crawford. While it initially set out to be a drama, Dunaway’s performance ultimately turned the film into an over-the-top campfest. In a twist of irony, Dunaway’s career was on the decline while playing a true-life character, Joan Crawford, whose career and success was shown to be in a desperate decline as well.
- “Three Days of the Condor” (1975). Dunaway was nominated for a Golden Globe as Kathy Hale, the woman who’s at first taken hostage by Robert Redford’s CIA character, but later helps him evade capture and death. “Condor” has held up over time and is still considered to be a solid thriller and one of the best films of the ‘70s.