Starring James Dean
Released: One month after death
James Dean's icon swag increases tenfold when you realize that Rebel Without a Cause, the definitive, visual youth guidebook for years to follow, was released after he was already gone. Then again, his tragic, untimely death via car crash only made his legend, and the film, that much more significant.
As Jim Stark, Dean put parents of the '50s onward under pressure, gave dudes a new image to imitate, and girls a new heartthrob with his high-school misadventures, and yet Rebel transcends being what would now be considered a simplistic "teen movie" with its honest account of surviving teenage years against parenting a new generation.