Most Popular Police Protagonist Movies and TV Shows

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1. Fargo (2014– )

TV-MA | 53 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

9.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9/10 X  

Various chronicles of deception, intrigue and murder in and around frozen Minnesota. Yet all of these tales mysteriously lead back one way or another to Fargo, North Dakota.

Stars: Billy Bob Thornton, Martin Freeman, Allison Tolman, Colin Hanks

Votes: 274,847

2. BlacKkKlansman (2018)

R | 135 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
83 Metascore

Ron Stallworth, an African American police officer from Colorado Springs, CO, successfully manages to infiltrate the local Ku Klux Klan branch with the help of a Jewish surrogate who eventually becomes its leader. Based on actual events.

Director: Spike Lee | Stars: John David Washington, Adam Driver, Laura Harrier, Topher Grace

Votes: 150,325 | Gross: $48.69M

3. Hawaii Five-0 (2010– )

TV-14 | 42 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Steve McGarrett returns home to Oahu, in order to find his father's killer. The Governor offers him the chance to run his own task force (Five-0).

Stars: Alex O'Loughlin, Scott Caan, Taylor Wily, Daniel Dae Kim

Votes: 61,550

4. Columbo (1971–2003)

TV-PG | 100 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

Los Angeles homicide detective Lieutenant Columbo uses his humble ways and ingenuous demeanor to winkle out even the most well-concealed of crimes.

Stars: Peter Falk, Mike Lally, John Finnegan, Bruce Kirby

Votes: 23,855

5. The Shield (2002–2008)

TV-MA | 47 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

8.7
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.7/10 X  

Follows the lives and cases of a dirty Los Angeles Police Department cop and the unit under his command.

Stars: Michael Chiklis, Catherine Dent, Walton Goggins, Michael Jace

Votes: 66,061

6. Happy Valley (2014– )

TV-MA | 58 min | Crime, Drama

8.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.5/10 X  

Catherine Cawood is the sergeant on duty when flustered and nervous accountant Kevin Weatherill comes into her West Yorkshire station to report a crime.

Stars: Sarah Lancashire, Siobhan Finneran, Shane Zaza, Charlie Murphy

Votes: 28,107

7. Mad Max (1979)

R | 88 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

6.9
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
73 Metascore

In a self-destructing world, a vengeful Australian policeman sets out to stop a violent motorcycle gang.

Director: George Miller | Stars: Mel Gibson, Joanne Samuel, Hugh Keays-Byrne, Steve Bisley

Votes: 177,122 | Gross: $8.75M

8. Training Day (2001)

R | 122 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
69 Metascore

On his first day on the job as a Los Angeles narcotics officer, a rookie cop goes beyond a full work day in training within the narcotics division of the L.A.P.D. with a rogue detective who isn't what he appears to be.

Director: Antoine Fuqua | Stars: Denzel Washington, Ethan Hawke, Scott Glenn, Tom Berenger

Votes: 357,216 | Gross: $76.63M

9. NYPD Blue (1993–2005)

TV-14 | 45 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Detectives from NYPD's 15th Precinct investigate homicides within their precinct.

Stars: Dennis Franz, Jimmy Smits, Gordon Clapp, James McDaniel

Votes: 10,611

10. Miami Vice (1984–1990)

TV-14 | 48 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Resplendent with authentic 1980's music, fashion and vibe, "Miami Vice" follows two undercover detectives and their extended team through the mean streets of Miami.

Stars: Don Johnson, Philip Michael Thomas, Saundra Santiago, Olivia Brown

Votes: 20,702

11. L.A. Confidential (1997)

R | 138 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.3/10 X  
90 Metascore

As corruption grows in 1950s Los Angeles, three policemen -- one strait-laced, one brutal, and one sleazy -- investigate a series of murders with their own brand of justice.

Director: Curtis Hanson | Stars: Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce, Kim Basinger

Votes: 494,777 | Gross: $64.62M

12. Marcella (2016– )

TV-MA | 45 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

Marcella Backland left the Metropolitan Police for the sake of her family, only to have her husband leave her. She returns to her job on the murder squad, investigating a case that seems disturbingly familiar to her.

Stars: Anna Friel, Ray Panthaki, Jack Doolan, Jamie Bamber

Votes: 15,573

13. Cold Case (2003–2010)

TV-14 | 44 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

The Philadelphia homicide squad's lone female detective finds her calling when she's assigned "cold cases", older crimes that have never been solved.

Stars: Kathryn Morris, Danny Pino, John Finn, Jeremy Ratchford

Votes: 22,379

14. End of Watch (2012)

R | 109 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
68 Metascore

Shot documentary-style, this film follows the daily grind of two young police officers in LA who are partners and friends, and what happens when they meet criminal forces greater than themselves.

Director: David Ayer | Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Michael Peña, Anna Kendrick, America Ferrera

Votes: 211,493 | Gross: $41.00M

15. Beverly Hills Cop (1984)

R | 105 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
64 Metascore

A freewheeling Detroit cop pursuing a murder investigation finds himself dealing with the very different culture of Beverly Hills.

Director: Martin Brest | Stars: Eddie Murphy, Judge Reinhold, John Ashton, Lisa Eilbacher

Votes: 149,111 | Gross: $234.76M

16. Detroit: Become Human (2018 Video Game)

M | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller

9.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 9.3/10 X  

Take control of three androids in their quest to discover who they really are.

Director: David Cage | Stars: Valorie Curry, Bryan Dechart, Jesse Williams, Audrey Boustani

Votes: 6,097

17. Anon (I) (2018)

TV-MA | 100 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller

6.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
54 Metascore

In a world without anonymity or crime, a detective meets a woman who threatens their security.

Director: Andrew Niccol | Stars: Clive Owen, Afiya Bennett, Morgan Allen, Jeffrey Men

Votes: 29,256

18. 21 Jump Street (1987–1991)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.3
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The cases of an undercover police unit composed of young looking officers specializing in youth crime.

Stars: Johnny Depp, Dustin Nguyen, Peter DeLuise, Holly Robinson Peete

Votes: 9,898

19. Lethal Weapon (1987)

R | 109 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

7.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
68 Metascore

Two newly paired cops who are complete opposites must put aside their differences in order to catch a gang of drug smugglers.

Director: Richard Donner | Stars: Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Gary Busey, Mitchell Ryan

Votes: 219,701 | Gross: $65.21M

20. CHiPs (1977–1983)

TV-PG | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

6.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

The adventures of two California Highway Patrol motorcycle officers.

Stars: Erik Estrada, Larry Wilcox, Robert Pine, Paul Linke

Votes: 6,789

21. The Wailing (2016)

Not Rated | 156 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
81 Metascore

Soon after a stranger arrives in a little village, a mysterious sickness starts spreading. A policeman, drawn into the incident, is forced to solve the mystery in order to save his daughter.

Director: Hong-jin Na | Stars: Jun Kunimura, Jung-min Hwang, Do-won Kwak, Woo-hee Chun

Votes: 35,627

22. Dogs of Berlin (2018– )

TV-MA | 542 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A politically sensitive murder forces two disparate detectives into a battle with the Berlin underworld and a confrontation with their own corruption.

Stars: Felix Kramer, Fahri Yardim, Samy Abdel Fattah, Mohamed Issa

Votes: 6,624

23. Dirty Harry (1971)

R | 102 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
90 Metascore

When a mad man calling himself 'the Scorpio Killer' menaces the city, tough as nails San Francisco Police Inspector Harry Callahan is assigned to track down and ferret out the crazed psychopath.

Director: Don Siegel | Stars: Clint Eastwood, Andrew Robinson, Harry Guardino, Reni Santoni

Votes: 132,271

24. Fallen (1998)

R | 124 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Homicide detective John Hobbes witnesses the execution of serial killer Edgar Reese. Soon after the execution the killings start again, and they are very similar to Reese's style.

Director: Gregory Hoblit | Stars: Denzel Washington, John Goodman, Donald Sutherland, Embeth Davidtz

Votes: 68,782 | Gross: $25.19M

25. Bullitt (1968)

M/PG | 114 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

7.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
83 Metascore

An all guts, no glory San Francisco cop becomes determined to find the underworld kingpin that killed the witness in his protection.

Director: Peter Yates | Stars: Steve McQueen, Jacqueline Bisset, Robert Vaughn, Don Gordon

Votes: 55,381 | Gross: $42.30M

26. Hawaii Five-O (1968–1980)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

7.4
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The investigations of Hawaii Five-0, an elite branch of the Hawaii State Police answerable only to the governor and headed by stalwart Steve McGarrett.

Stars: Jack Lord, James MacArthur, Kam Fong, Herman Wedemeyer

Votes: 5,094

27. Flashpoint (2008–2012)

TV-14 | 41 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

The missions and trials of a Toronto police tactical unit.

Stars: Hugh Dillon, Amy Jo Johnson, David Paetkau, Sergio Di Zio

Votes: 15,686

28. Starsky and Hutch (1975–1979)

60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Two streetwise cops bust criminals in their red-and-white Ford Torino, with the help of police snitch, Huggy Bear.

Stars: David Soul, Paul Michael Glaser, Antonio Fargas, Bernie Hamilton

Votes: 6,488

29. Rush Hour 3 (2007)

PG-13 | 91 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

6.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  
44 Metascore

After an attempted assassination on Ambassador Han, Lee and Carter head to Paris to protect a French woman with knowledge of the Triads' secret leaders.

Director: Brett Ratner | Stars: Jackie Chan, Chris Tucker, Max von Sydow, Hiroyuki Sanada

Votes: 141,693 | Gross: $140.13M

30. Kojak (1973–1978)

TV-PG | 60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A bald, lollipop sucking police detective with a fiery righteous attitude battles crime in his city.

Stars: Telly Savalas, Dan Frazer, Kevin Dobson, George Savalas

Votes: 5,717

31. No Offence (2015– )

42 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

8.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

Follows a group of police officers on the front line wondering what they did to end up where they are now, on the ugly side of Manchester.

Stars: Joanna Scanlan, Elaine Cassidy, Will Mellor, Paul Ritter

Votes: 3,388

32. Homicide: Life on the Street (1993–1999)

TV-14 | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.6/10 X  

A police homicide investigation unit investigates violent crimes in the city of Baltimore.

Stars: Richard Belzer, Clark Johnson, Yaphet Kotto, Kyle Secor

Votes: 10,559

33. The French Connection (1971)

R | 104 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
94 Metascore

A pair of NYC cops in the Narcotics Bureau stumble onto a drug smuggling job with a French connection.

Director: William Friedkin | Stars: Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, Fernando Rey, Tony Lo Bianco

Votes: 99,566

34. Serpico (1973)

R | 130 min | Biography, Crime, Drama

7.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
87 Metascore

An honest New York cop named Frank Serpico blows the whistle on rampant corruption in the force only to have his comrades turn against him.

Director: Sidney Lumet | Stars: Al Pacino, John Randolph, Jack Kehoe, Biff McGuire

Votes: 97,196 | Gross: $29.80M

35. Hunter (I) (1984–1991)

TV-PG | 48 min | Action, Crime, Drama

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Rick Hunter is a renegade cop who breaks the rules and takes justice into his own hands. Partnered with the equally stunning and rebellious Sgt. McCall, the tough-minded duo set out to crack down on L.A.'s slimiest criminals.

Stars: Fred Dryer, Stepfanie Kramer, Charles Hallahan, Perry Cook

Votes: 3,245

36. Black Rain (1989)

R | 125 min | Action, Crime, Thriller

6.6
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
56 Metascore

Two NYC cops arrest a Yakuza member and must escort him when he's extradited to Japan.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Michael Douglas, Andy Garcia, Ken Takakura, Kate Capshaw

Votes: 45,622 | Gross: $46.21M

37. Hangman (II) (2017)

R | 98 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

5.2
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
31 Metascore

A homicide detective brings his partner out of retirement to help catch a serial killer whose crimes are based on the children's game Hangman.

Director: Johnny Martin | Stars: Al Pacino, Karl Urban, Brittany Snow, Joe Anderson

Votes: 10,430

38. Showtime (2002)

PG-13 | 95 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

5.5
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.5/10 X  
32 Metascore

A spoof of buddy cop movies where two very different cops are forced to team up on a new reality based television cop show, while tracking down the manufacturer and distributor of an illegally made semi-automatic firearm.

Director: Tom Dey | Stars: Robert De Niro, Eddie Murphy, Rene Russo, Rachael Harris

Votes: 57,689 | Gross: $38.08M

39. Alex (2017– )

43 min | Action, Thriller

6.9
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

When a dirty cop decides to go straight after having accidentally shot his partner, he must first get dirtier than ever as the gangsters he used to work for go after his family, while his ... See full summary »

Stars: Dragomir Mrsic, Rakel Wärmländer, Maximilian Alonso Mrsic, Anja Lundqvist

Votes: 494

40. T.J. Hooker (1982–1986)

TV-PG | 60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

6.1
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

The weekly adventures of tough-as-nails veteran police officer Sgt. T.J. Hooker, who rides the beat with his rookie partner Vince Romano.

Stars: William Shatner, Heather Locklear, Adrian Zmed, James Darren

Votes: 3,265

41. In the Dark (2017)

TV-MA | 52 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

As she deals with an unexpected pregnancy, D.I. Helen Weeks must return to the hometown she loathes to help her childhood best friend, who finds herself at the centre of a media frenzy following the abduction of two teenage girls.

Stars: Ben Batt, MyAnna Buring, Matt King, David Leon

Votes: 1,756

42. Bad Lieutenant (1992)

NC-17 | 96 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

7.1
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
70 Metascore

While investigating a young nun's rape, a corrupt New York City police detective, with a serious drug and gambling addiction, tries to change his ways and find forgiveness and redemption.

Director: Abel Ferrara | Stars: Harvey Keitel, Brian McElroy, Frank Acciarito, Peggy Gormley

Votes: 34,704 | Gross: $2.00M

43. Cagney & Lacey (1981–1988)

TV-PG | 60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

6.8
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

Two female police detectives cooperate with each other both in their professions and in their personal lives.

Stars: Tyne Daly, Sharon Gless, Al Waxman, John Karlen

Votes: 2,862

44. Mod Squad (1968–1973)

60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.0
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

Three young outsiders fight crime as undercover agents for the police. (One white man, one black man, one blonde woman.)

Stars: Michael Cole, Clarence Williams III, Peggy Lipton, Tige Andrews

Votes: 1,551

45. Colors (1988)

R | 120 min | Action, Crime, Drama

6.7
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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
66 Metascore

An experienced cop and his rookie partner patrol the streets of East Los Angeles while trying to keep the gang violence under control.

Director: Dennis Hopper | Stars: Sean Penn, Robert Duvall, Maria Conchita Alonso, Randy Brooks

Votes: 22,412 | Gross: $46.62M

46. Crime Story (1986–1988)

60 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

8.4
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

The saga of a Chicago police detective's efforts to stop a young hood's ruthless rise in the ranks of organized crime.

Stars: Dennis Farina, Bill Smitrovich, Steve Ryan, Billy Campbell

Votes: 2,204

47. Far Cry 5 (2018 Video Game)

M | Action, Adventure, Drama

8.2
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

A deputy is sent to the town of Hope County to arrest Joseph Seed, a corrupt evangelical religious leader who rules the town with the help of his disturbed followers.

Director: Patrick Methe | Stars: Greg Bryk, Mark Pellegrino, Seamus Dever, Jenessa Grant

Votes: 2,921

48. The Streets of San Francisco (1972–1977)

60 min | Action, Crime, Drama

7.3
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A veteran cop with more than twenty years of experience is teamed with a young Inspector to solve crimes in San Francisco, California.

Stars: Karl Malden, Michael Douglas, Reuben Collins, Richard Hatch

Votes: 4,501

49. Department Q: The Absent One (2014)

Not Rated | 119 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

7.1
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
61 Metascore

The murder of young twins initially implicates a group of upper class students as the killers, though the case takes a turn or two from its starting point.

Director: Mikkel Nørgaard | Stars: Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Fares Fares, Pilou Asbæk, David Dencik

Votes: 15,757

50. Goldstone (2016)

R | 110 min | Crime, Thriller

6.4
Rate this
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  
78 Metascore

Indigenous Detective Jay Swan arrives in the frontier town of Goldstone on a missing persons inquiry. What seems like a simple light duty investigation opens a web of crime and corruption. ... See full summary »

Director: Ivan Sen | Stars: Aaron Pedersen, Alex Russell, Jacki Weaver, David Wenham

Votes: 3,533 | Gross: $0.09M



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