The best film noir

by anasi992 | created - 18 Jan 2016 | updated - 10 months ago | Public
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1. Ace in the Hole (1951)

Not Rated | 111 min | Drama, Film-Noir

72 Metascore

A frustrated former big-city journalist now stuck working for an Albuquerque newspaper exploits a story about a man trapped in a cave to rekindle his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus.

Director: Billy Wilder | Stars: Kirk Douglas, Jan Sterling, Robert Arthur, Porter Hall

Votes: 27,028 | Gross: $3.97M

2. Union Station (1950)

Approved | 81 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A sharp-eyed woman spots a man with a gun on a train and her alert to the railroad police helps them in their search for a ruthless gang who have kidnapped a blind heiress.

Director: Rudolph Maté | Stars: William Holden, Nancy Olson, Barry Fitzgerald, Lyle Bettger

Votes: 2,130

3. My Name Is Julia Ross (1945)

Not Rated | 65 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Julia Ross secures employment, through a rather nosy employment agency, with a wealthy widow, Mrs. Hughes, and goes to live at her house. 2 days later, she awakens - in a different house, ... See full summary »

Director: Joseph H. Lewis | Stars: Nina Foch, May Whitty, George Macready, Roland Varno

Votes: 2,198

4. While the City Sleeps (1956)

Not Rated | 100 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A serial killer has been killing beautiful women in New York and the new owner of a media company offers a high ranking job to the first of his senior executives who can get the earliest scoops on the case.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Dana Andrews, Rhonda Fleming, George Sanders, Howard Duff

Votes: 5,079

5. Dark Waters (1944)

Approved | 90 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery

A woman returns to the USA after a German u-boat sank her ship, and finds out that someone wants to kill her for her inheritance.

Director: André De Toth | Stars: Merle Oberon, Franchot Tone, Thomas Mitchell, Fay Bainter

Votes: 817

6. The Spiral Staircase (1946)

Approved | 83 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

In 1916, a shadowy serial killer is targeting women with "afflictions"; one night during a thunderstorm, the mute Helen feels menaced.

Director: Robert Siodmak | Stars: Dorothy McGuire, George Brent, Ethel Barrymore, Kent Smith

Votes: 8,392

7. Scarlet Street (1945)

Approved | 102 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller

When a man in mid-life crisis befriends a young woman, her venal fiancé persuades her to con him out of the fortune they mistakenly assume he possesses.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Dan Duryea, Margaret Lindsay

Votes: 13,105

8. Hangover Square (1945)

Approved | 77 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A promising classical musician finds his life poisoned by a music hall dancer -- and by the strange gaps in his memory.

Director: John Brahm | Stars: Laird Cregar, Linda Darnell, George Sanders, Glenn Langan

Votes: 2,336

9. Odds Against Tomorrow (1959)

Approved | 96 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Dave Burke hires two very different debt-burdened men for a bank robbery. Suspicion and prejudice threaten to end their partnership.

Director: Robert Wise | Stars: Harry Belafonte, Robert Ryan, Gloria Grahame, Shelley Winters

Votes: 3,339

10. The Narrow Margin (1952)

Approved | 71 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A woman planning to testify against the mob must be protected against their assassins on the train trip from Chicago to Los Angeles.

Director: Richard Fleischer | Stars: Charles McGraw, Marie Windsor, Jacqueline White, Queenie Leonard

Votes: 6,563

11. Act of Violence (1949)

Passed | 82 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller

An embittered, vengeful POW stalks his former commanding officer who betrayed his men's planned escape attempt from a Nazi prison camp.

Director: Fred Zinnemann | Stars: Van Heflin, Robert Ryan, Janet Leigh, Mary Astor

Votes: 4,185

12. Sorry, Wrong Number (1948)

Approved | 89 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery

While on the telephone, an invalid woman overhears what she thinks is a murder plot and attempts to prevent it.

Director: Anatole Litvak | Stars: Barbara Stanwyck, Burt Lancaster, Ann Richards, Wendell Corey

Votes: 8,977

13. Fallen Angel (1945)

Approved | 98 min | Crime, Film-Noir, Mystery

A slick con man arrives in a small town looking to make some money, but soon gets more than he bargained for.

Director: Otto Preminger | Stars: Alice Faye, Dana Andrews, Linda Darnell, Charles Bickford

Votes: 4,349

14. Thieves' Highway (1949)

Not Rated | 94 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Thriller

A war-veteran-turned-truck driver attempts to avenge the crippling and robbing of his father at the hands of an amoral produce scofflaw.

Director: Jules Dassin | Stars: Richard Conte, Valentina Cortese, Lee J. Cobb, Barbara Lawrence

Votes: 4,956

15. Sudden Fear (1952)

Approved | 110 min | Film-Noir, Thriller

After an ambitious actor insinuates himself into the life of a wealthy middle-aged playwright and marries her, he plots with his mistress to murder her.

Director: David Miller | Stars: Joan Crawford, Jack Palance, Gloria Grahame, Bruce Bennett

Votes: 4,624

16. Caught (1949)

Approved | 88 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Romance

An L.A. department store ambitious young model gets her wish of marrying a millionaire but she eventually discovers that rich life isn't always a happy one.

Director: Max Ophüls | Stars: James Mason, Barbara Bel Geddes, Robert Ryan, Frank Ferguson

Votes: 3,015

17. The Woman in the Window (1944)

Approved | 107 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

When a conservative middle-aged professor engages in a minor dalliance with a femme fatale, he is plunged into a nightmarish quicksand of blackmail and murder.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Raymond Massey, Edmund Breon

Votes: 12,664

18. This Gun for Hire (1942)

Passed | 81 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

When assassin Philip Raven shoots a blackmailer and his beautiful female companion dead, he is paid off in marked bills by his treasonous employer who is working with foreign spies.

Director: Frank Tuttle | Stars: Alan Ladd, Veronica Lake, Robert Preston, Laird Cregar

Votes: 7,803

19. Cry of the City (1948)

Passed | 95 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Police Lieut. Candella, longtime friend of the Rome family, walks a tightrope in the case of cop-killer Martin Rome.

Director: Robert Siodmak | Stars: Victor Mature, Richard Conte, Fred Clark, Shelley Winters

Votes: 1,962

20. The Postman Always Rings Twice (1946)

Not Rated | 113 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A married woman and a drifter fall in love, then plot to murder her husband.

Director: Tay Garnett | Stars: Lana Turner, John Garfield, Cecil Kellaway, Hume Cronyn

Votes: 17,317 | Gross: $8.33M

21. Desert Fury (1947)

Approved | 96 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

The daughter of a Nevada casino owner gets involved with a racketeer, despite everyone's efforts to separate them.

Director: Lewis Allen | Stars: John Hodiak, Lizabeth Scott, Burt Lancaster, Wendell Corey

Votes: 1,170

22. Ride the Pink Horse (1947)

Not Rated | 101 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

WW2 veteran Lucky Gagin arrives in a New Mexico border-town intent on revenging against mobster Frank Hugo but FBI agent Bill Retz, who also wants Hugo, tries to keep Gagin out of trouble.

Director: Robert Montgomery | Stars: Robert Montgomery, Thomas Gomez, Wanda Hendrix, Rita Conde

Votes: 2,244

23. The Lineup (1958)

Approved | 86 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

In San Francisco, a psychopathic gangster and his mentor retrieve heroin packages carried by unsuspecting travelers.

Director: Don Siegel | Stars: Eli Wallach, Robert Keith, Richard Jaeckel, Mary LaRoche

Votes: 2,474

24. Mildred Pierce (1945)

Passed | 111 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A hard-working mother inches towards disaster as she divorces her husband and starts a successful restaurant business to support her spoiled daughter.

Director: Michael Curtiz | Stars: Joan Crawford, Jack Carson, Zachary Scott, Eve Arden

Votes: 21,040

25. D.O.A. (1949)

Approved | 83 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery

Frank Bigelow, told he's been poisoned and has only a few days to live, tries to find out who killed him and why.

Director: Rudolph Maté | Stars: Edmond O'Brien, Pamela Britton, Luther Adler, Beverly Garland

Votes: 10,031

26. Where the Sidewalk Ends (1950)

Not Rated | 95 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Det. Sgt. Mark Dixon wants to be something his old man wasn't: a guy on the right side of the law. Will Dixon's vicious nature get the better of him?

Director: Otto Preminger | Stars: Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney, Gary Merrill, Bert Freed

Votes: 7,137

27. Moonrise (1948)

Passed | 90 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Danny is being despised by his schoolmates because his father was accused to have killed another man and is condemned to the death penalty.

Director: Frank Borzage | Stars: Dane Clark, Gail Russell, Ethel Barrymore, Allyn Joslyn

Votes: 1,891

28. The Big Knife (1955)

Not Rated | 111 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Hollywood actor Charles Castle is pressured by his studio boss into a criminal cover-up to protect his valuable career.

Director: Robert Aldrich | Stars: Jack Palance, Ida Lupino, Wendell Corey, Jean Hagen

Votes: 3,010

29. The Reckless Moment (1949)

Not Rated | 82 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

After discovering the dead body of her teenage daughter's lover, a housewife takes desperate measures to protect her family from scandal.

Director: Max Ophüls | Stars: James Mason, Joan Bennett, Geraldine Brooks, Henry O'Neill

Votes: 3,834

30. House of Bamboo (1955)

Approved | 102 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Planted in a Tokyo crime syndicate, a U.S. Army Investigator attempts to probe the coinciding death of a fellow Army official.

Director: Samuel Fuller | Stars: Robert Ryan, Robert Stack, Shirley Yamaguchi, Cameron Mitchell

Votes: 2,665

31. On Dangerous Ground (1951)

Approved | 82 min | Drama, Film-Noir

Rough city cop Jim Wilson is disciplined by his captain and is sent upstate, to a snowy mountain town, to help the local sheriff solve a murder case.

Directors: Nicholas Ray, Ida Lupino | Stars: Ida Lupino, Robert Ryan, Ward Bond, Charles Kemper

Votes: 5,841

32. Leave Her to Heaven (1945)

Not Rated | 110 min | Drama, Romance, Thriller

A writer falls in love with a young socialite and they're soon married. But her obsessive love for him threatens to be the undoing of them both, and everyone else around them.

Director: John M. Stahl | Stars: Gene Tierney, Cornel Wilde, Jeanne Crain, Vincent Price

Votes: 10,030

33. The Naked City (1948)

Not Rated | 96 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Two New York City detectives investigate the death of an attractive young woman. The apparent suicide turns out to be murder.

Director: Jules Dassin | Stars: Barry Fitzgerald, Howard Duff, Dorothy Hart, Don Taylor

Votes: 11,153

34. T-Men (1947)

Approved | 92 min | Crime, Film-Noir, Thriller

Two US Treasury agents hunt a successful counterfeiting ring.

Director: Anthony Mann | Stars: Dennis O'Keefe, Wallace Ford, Alfred Ryder, Mary Meade

Votes: 2,895

35. Nightfall (1956)

78 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Through a series of bizarre coincidences, an artist finds himself falsely accused of bank robbery and murder and is pursued by the authorities and the real killers.

Director: Jacques Tourneur | Stars: Aldo Ray, Anne Bancroft, Brian Keith, Jocelyn Brando

Votes: 2,894

36. Crossfire (1947)

Approved | 86 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A man is murdered, apparently by one of a group of demobilized soldiers he met in a bar. But which one? And why?

Director: Edward Dmytryk | Stars: Robert Young, Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan, Gloria Grahame

Votes: 6,833 | Gross: $1.30M

37. They Live by Night (1948)

Passed | 95 min | Crime, Film-Noir, Romance

An escaped convict, injured during a robbery, falls in love with the woman who nurses him back to health, but their relationship seems doomed from the beginning.

Director: Nicholas Ray | Stars: Cathy O'Donnell, Farley Granger, Howard Da Silva, Jay C. Flippen

Votes: 6,316

38. Ministry of Fear (1944)

Not Rated | 86 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Stephen Neale has just been released from an asylum during World War 2 in England when he stumbles on a deadly Nazi spy plot by accident, and tries to stop it.

Director: Fritz Lang | Stars: Ray Milland, Marjorie Reynolds, Carl Esmond, Hillary Brooke

Votes: 6,220

39. Nightmare Alley (1947)

Passed | 110 min | Drama, Film-Noir

The rise and fall of Stanton Carlisle, a mentalist whose lies and deceit prove to be his downfall.

Director: Edmund Goulding | Stars: Tyrone Power, Joan Blondell, Coleen Gray, Helen Walker

Votes: 6,808

40. The Crimson Kimono (1959)

Approved | 82 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Two detectives seek a stripper's killer in the Japanese quarter of Los Angeles, but a love triangle threatens their friendship.

Director: Samuel Fuller | Stars: Victoria Shaw, Glenn Corbett, James Shigeta, Anna Lee

Votes: 1,817

41. Criss Cross (1949)

Not Rated | 84 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

An armored truck driver and his lovely ex-wife conspire with a gang to have his own truck robbed on the route.

Director: Robert Siodmak | Stars: Burt Lancaster, Yvonne De Carlo, Dan Duryea, Stephen McNally

Votes: 6,749

42. Murder by Contract (1958)

Approved | 81 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Claude is a ruthless and efficient contract killer - until he finds his next target is a woman.

Director: Irving Lerner | Stars: Vince Edwards, Phillip Pine, Herschel Bernardi, Caprice Toriel

Votes: 2,212

43. Raw Deal (1948)

Not Rated | 79 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Joe Sullivan has taken the rap for Rick who double-crosses him with a flawed escape plan and other means intended to get rid of him.

Director: Anthony Mann | Stars: Dennis O'Keefe, Claire Trevor, Marsha Hunt, John Ireland

Votes: 3,800

44. The Killers (1946)

Passed | 103 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Hit men kill an unresisting victim, and investigator Reardon uncovers his past involvement with beautiful, deadly Kitty Collins.

Director: Robert Siodmak | Stars: Burt Lancaster, Ava Gardner, Edmond O'Brien, Albert Dekker

Votes: 17,751

45. Force of Evil (1948)

Passed | 79 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

89 Metascore

An unethical lawyer, with an older brother he wants to help, becomes a partner with a client in the numbers racket.

Director: Abraham Polonsky | Stars: John Garfield, Thomas Gomez, Marie Windsor, Howland Chamberlain

Votes: 5,422