The Rat Pack is the name given to a group of entertainers — Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Peter Lawford, Joey Bishop, and, of course, Frank Sinatra — that dominated cineplexes in their day. This era of Sinatra’s career saw the release of such memorable films as “Some Came Running (1958),” “Ocean’s Eleven” (1960), “The Manchurian Candidate” (1962), and “4 For Texas” (1963). The big difference with these films compared to his earlier Rat Pack entries is that Sinatra is now the main man.
By the 1960s, Sinatra was no longer the tag-along guy who had trouble talking to girls. Instead, the other men in these movies looked to him for direction and approval. He had come full circle from his days as a fresh-faced newcomer. In the early years, his shy guy persona was endearing, but he really came into his own as the fedora-wearing leader of the pack. These two distinct movie personas show his growth as an actor and highlight how he was able to bounce back despite personal and professional hardships.
Sinatra’s career wound down significantly during the ’70s and he would play his last starring role in 1980, that of almost-retired New York cop Ed Delaney in the crime thriller “The First Deadly Sin.” It was a final flourish from Sinatra, who turned in a stellar performance that blew veteran film critic Roger Ebert away. He said: “Who would have thought, in all honesty, that Frank Sinatra had this performance still left in him?”