Rebel Without A Cause is a landmark of American culture, identified by the Library of Congress as culturally, historically, and aesthetically significant.
It features James Dean in his next-to-last role, with Natalie Wood and Sal Mineo, and a supporting cast that includes Jim Backus and young Dennis Hopper. It adopted the title of a 1940s psychological study and dramatized the “generation gap” (before the term existed). The central theme of it – a suburban middle-class teenager rebelling against parental authority and society’s expectations of him – has influenced countless movies and entire genres of music (starting with rock-and-roll), and has profoundly affected that society itself.
Released in 1955 (shortly after Dean’s tragic death), it should have entered the Public Domain in January 2012.