99 shades of Noir (with notes).

by un_samourai | created - 14 Mar 2011 | updated - 1 day ago | Public

Listed in order of preference, these are all the Noir/Neo-Noir that I recommend considering watching.

The tag 'Film Noir' is a subjective one. The style was only really identified and extensively written about after the classic cycle was already over. No one making a picture then (1940-1960) thought of it as a Noir. They probably thought of these films as "second feature crime thrillers".

Let's face it, we generally categorize to simply help find or avoid certain types of art/entertainment. My point being, Noir is an invented category, so let's not get too pedantic about which films are and are not Noirs. For further reading, I suggest Paul Schrader's wonderful essay from 1971, Notes On Film Noir.

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1. Classe Tous Risques (1960)

Not Rated | 103 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

84 Metascore

Abel Davis is a criminal, hunted in Italy. The police are closing in, so he and his pal Raymond arrange to flee back to France with Abel's wife, Thérèse, and their two young sons. Abel and ... See full summary »

Director: Claude Sautet | Stars: Lino Ventura, Sandra Milo, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Marcel Dalio

Votes: 2,544 | Gross: $0.09M

The same writer as the great Le Deuxieme Souffle. The first film Claude Sautet directed from start to finish is a knockout. His 'first' film "Bonjour Sourire!" being the taking over another director's ailing project.

This is one of the best Noirs of all time. Make it a top priority.

2. Le Deuxieme Souffle (1966)

Not Rated | 150 min | Crime, Drama

A gangster escapes jail and quickly makes plans to continue his criminal ways elsewhere, but a determined inspector is closing in.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse, Raymond Pellegrin, Christine Fabréga

Votes: 4,196

Much better than it's reputation as a slightly second tier Melville film, this is one of the all time great crime films. It's (neo)noir heaven. Love it!!

3. Out of the Past (1947)

Not Rated | 97 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A private eye escapes his past to run a gas station in a small town, but his past catches up with him. Now he must return to the big city world of danger, corruption, double crosses and duplicitous dames.

Director: Jacques Tourneur | Stars: Robert Mitchum, Jane Greer, Kirk Douglas, Rhonda Fleming

Votes: 27,031

Certainly a contender for best noir of all time. A must see title if there ever was one. Robert Mitchum in the lead is magnetic, but very relatable. Jane Greer is simply one of the most alluring, and mendacious femme fatale's ever. I could go on and on. It has everything that make the noir genre so enjoyable.

4. Blade Runner (1982)

R | 117 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller

89 Metascore

A blade runner must pursue and terminate four replicants who stole a ship in space and have returned to Earth to find their creator.

Director: Ridley Scott | Stars: Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos

Votes: 584,621 | Gross: $27.00M

Of course this features high on the list. If you've never seen it, make it a priority (especially with the highly anticipated Blade Runner 2049 on the horizon).

This is one of the absolute best neo-noirs. The set-decoration, design, and special effects are notable, as is the gorgeous Vangelis score. Just what is it to be human? These days, I like the original theatrical cut with the very noir narration by Harrison Ford better than the director's cut, even though the ending is a bit more commercial.

5. Le Corbeau (1943)

Not Rated | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

French village doctor becomes target of poison-pen letters sent to village leaders, accusing him of affairs and practicing abortion.

Director: Henri-Georges Clouzot | Stars: Pierre Fresnay, Ginette Leclerc, Micheline Francey, Héléna Manson

Votes: 7,317 | Gross: $0.03M

Better than 'Les Diaboliques' and 'Wages of Fear' in my opinion. It's a truly great noir thriller, in fact, it's simply one of the very best films period. I've had the pleasure of watching it three times, and it killed every time.

6. Army of Shadows (1969)

Not Rated | 145 min | Drama, War

99 Metascore

An account of underground resistance fighters in Nazi-occupied France.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Lino Ventura, Paul Meurisse, Jean-Pierre Cassel, Simone Signoret

Votes: 16,802 | Gross: $0.74M

Probably the best Melville of all for it's pithy subject. The deminonde of the French Resistance is the subject, and it is fascinating, and grim. This is a good film to see if J.P. Melville's stylish, but spare film making is up your alley.

7. Pulp Fiction (1994)

R | 154 min | Crime, Drama

94 Metascore

The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster's wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis

Votes: 1,528,643 | Gross: $107.93M

It's a hard film to classify, but it certainly has a lot of Noir in it. It's more an experience than just a film. When watching this for the first time, you just don't now where Q.T. will take you next. I just watched this again, probably for the 8th time, and it knocked me out yet again.

It has enough content for two great films. The dialogue is marvelous, and so is the music selection. The non-chronological structure also works beautifully for this film.

This is one of two great Tarantino films (Reservoir Dogs being the other). For me, his subsequent films have not measured up to his first two pictures.

8. The Third Man (1949)

Not Rated | 93 min | Film-Noir, Mystery, Thriller

Pulp novelist Holly Martins travels to shadowy, postwar Vienna, only to find himself investigating the mysterious death of an old friend, Harry Lime.

Director: Carol Reed | Stars: Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Alida Valli, Trevor Howard

Votes: 134,825 | Gross: $0.45M

The sewers of post war Vienna, and a zither score that you'll never forget. Welles is fabulous.

9. The Lady from Shanghai (1947)

Not Rated | 87 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Fascinated by gorgeous Mrs. Bannister, seaman Michael O'Hara joins a bizarre yachting cruise, and ends up mired in a complex murder plot.

Director: Orson Welles | Stars: Rita Hayworth, Orson Welles, Everett Sloane, Glenn Anders

Votes: 21,894 | Gross: $0.01M

For me, this film is quite a bit better than Wells' 'Touch of Evil'. See it for the house of mirrors scene alone. It is certainly one of the best of all film Noirs. This picture is packed with wonderfully sleazy characters, and deceit is everywhere.

10. Pierrot le Fou (1965)

Not Rated | 110 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

Pierrot escapes his boring society and travels from Paris to the Mediterranean Sea with Marianne, a girl chased by hit-men from Algeria. They lead an unorthodox life, always on the run.

Director: Jean-Luc Godard | Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Anna Karina, Graziella Galvani, Aicha Abadir

Votes: 23,196

For art-house fans only.

Super original, and super fun, this noir colors WAY outside the lines. It is an example of how malleable the noir framework really is. There is a core entertainment to watching a couple on a doomed crime spree.

IMHO, this is the best J.L.Godard film.

11. Chinatown (1974)

R | 130 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

86 Metascore

A private detective hired to expose an adulterer finds himself caught up in a web of deceit, corruption, and murder.

Director: Roman Polanski | Stars: Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston, Perry Lopez

Votes: 250,340 | Gross: $29.20M

A perfect neo-noir with a very powerful gut-punch of an ending added by Polanski to Robert Towne's script.

It could only be more Noir if it was shot in B&W. An essential film. One of Jack Nicholson's best roles as well (which is saying a lot!).

12. Le Samouraï (1967)

GP | 101 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

After Professional hitman Jef Costello is seen by witnesses his efforts to provide himself an alibi drive him further into a corner.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Alain Delon, François Périer, Nathalie Delon, Cathy Rosier

Votes: 36,477 | Gross: $0.04M

This is one of the 'coolest' films ever, and Alain Delon is the handsomest film star to grace the screen. Not for those who don't like to be left with a little mystery at the end of a film, as Melville almost always liked to do. I can see an influence of 'This Gun For Hire' in this picture, but Melville does it oh so much better.

13. Le Doulos (1963)

Not Rated | 108 min | Crime, Thriller

A burglar betraying other criminals, prepares for a big heist with a trusted friend that might be as untrustworthy as he.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Jean-Paul Belmondo, Serge Reggiani, Jean Desailly, René Lefèvre

Votes: 7,202 | Gross: $0.08M

Another great J.P. Melville film. A very grimy Paris, and a twisty story add up to another must see Melville film. I watched it again a day after seeing it for the first time.

14. Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989)

PG-13 | 104 min | Comedy, Drama

77 Metascore

An ophthalmologist's mistress threatens to reveal their affair to his wife while a married documentary filmmaker is infatuated with another woman.

Director: Woody Allen | Stars: Martin Landau, Woody Allen, Bill Bernstein, Claire Bloom

Votes: 47,901 | Gross: $18.25M

**Mild Spoilers**

Many compare it to Fyodor Dostoyevsky's writing, with good reason. For me, it's the best Woody Allen film. It could be seen as a very serious riff on film Noir. One of the things that makes it Woody's best, is aside from the main story of a crime (Landau, Houston), there is a secondary, lighter, funnier story line (Alda, Allen and Farrow) that balances out the heaviness of the Landau/Houston plot beautifully.

15. Revanche (2008)

Not Rated | 121 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

84 Metascore

Ex-con Alex plans to flee to the South with his girl after a robbery. But something terrible happens and revenge seems inevitable.

Director: Götz Spielmann | Stars: Johannes Krisch, Irina Potapenko, Andreas Lust, Ursula Strauss

Votes: 12,318

For art-house fans only. It is a quiet, minimal film.

This is a great, great film noir, but it also to me seems to transcend the genre by sheer emotional depth. Those of you with shorter attention spans be warned though: this film has a European quietness/minimalness to it. Lots of still camera setups that are really beautifully framed. I just watched this film again, and loved it even more on second viewing.

16. No Country for Old Men (2007)

R | 122 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

91 Metascore

Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon a drug deal gone wrong and more than two million dollars in cash near the Rio Grande.

Directors: Ethan Coen, Joel Coen | Stars: Tommy Lee Jones, Javier Bardem, Josh Brolin, Woody Harrelson

Votes: 715,712 | Gross: $74.28M

Probably the best Coen brothers film. Excellent, excellent picture!

17. 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 re-jump start 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: 22,551 | Gross: $3.97M

Billy Wilder's follow-up to Sunset Boulevard (also excellent) is a terrific film. Kirk Douglas has been great in so many films. This is up there with his best. Cynicism , oportunism, and capitalism are the themes of this terrific, dark picture. It is my favorite Billy Wilder film, and is sadly underknown.

18. Mulholland Dr. (2001)

R | 147 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

83 Metascore

After a car wreck on the winding Mulholland Drive renders a woman amnesiac, she and a perky Hollywood-hopeful search for clues and answers across Los Angeles in a twisting venture beyond dreams and reality.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Naomi Watts, Laura Harring, Justin Theroux, Jeanne Bates

Votes: 274,197 | Gross: $7.22M

A terrific dark, disturbing, (solvable) puzzle. Naomi Watts is fantastic.

19. Notorious (1946)

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

A woman is asked to spy on a group of Nazi friends in South America. How far will she have to go to ingratiate herself with them?

Director: Alfred Hitchcock | Stars: Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman, Claude Rains, Louis Calhern

Votes: 81,309 | Gross: $10.46M

One of Hitch's best films. A must see.

20. Se7en (1995)

R | 127 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

65 Metascore

Two detectives, a rookie and a veteran, hunt a serial killer who uses the seven deadly sins as his motives.

Director: David Fincher | Stars: Morgan Freeman, Brad Pitt, Kevin Spacey, Andrew Kevin Walker

Votes: 1,193,507 | Gross: $100.13M

Simply one of my all time favorites. I remember several people saying they were rather disturbed after seeing this picture. Yes, it is dark stuff, but I just adore it. The opening credits are terrifically stylish.

21. 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: 3,625

This one's got just about everything, including social relevance, yet very few people champion this film. Do yourself a huge favor and see it.

22. Taxi Driver (1976)

R | 114 min | Crime, Drama

94 Metascore

A mentally unstable veteran works as a nighttime taxi driver in New York City, where the perceived decadence and sleaze fuels his urge for violent action, while attempting to liberate a twelve-year-old prostitute.

Director: Martin Scorsese | Stars: Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster, Cybill Shepherd, Albert Brooks

Votes: 593,977 | Gross: $28.26M

There's got to be the odd person who's not gotten around to this picture. Only one of the best films ever committed to celluloid. A little caveat though: It's definitely got some very adult content.

23. The Limey (1999)

R | 89 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

73 Metascore

An extremely volatile and dangerous Englishman goes to Los Angeles to find the man he considers responsible for his daughter's death.

Director: Steven Soderbergh | Stars: Terence Stamp, Peter Fonda, Lesley Ann Warren, Luis Guzmán

Votes: 26,581 | Gross: $3.19M

Wonderful film. Steven Soderbergh's revenge film is on the art-house side of Noir, and is clearly inspired by the style of the film 'Point Blank' replete with flash-backs, and flash-forwards. I love Terrence Stamp in this, but it's got many great performances.

24. Le Cercle Rouge (1970)

Not Rated | 140 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

91 Metascore

After leaving prison, master thief Corey crosses paths with a notorious escapee and an alcoholic former policeman. The trio proceed to plot an elaborate heist.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Alain Delon, Bourvil, Gian Maria Volontè, Yves Montand

Votes: 17,834 | Gross: $0.37M

Beautiful tones of color, great set decoration (as per usual with Melville) and the theme of comradery between thieves. One of the all time great heists as well. I do find that people either love or hate Mellville's films. They're certainly more quiet/minimal than most plot driven films.

As you see by my list, Melville is one of my very favorite directors.

25. The Killers (1946)

Not Rated | 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: 15,902

This may be a good film to use as an example of what a Noir is to those who don't know the term. It's one of the best.

26. Reservoir Dogs (1992)

R | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

79 Metascore

After a simple jewelry heist goes terribly wrong, the surviving criminals begin to suspect that one of them is a police informant.

Director: Quentin Tarantino | Stars: Harvey Keitel, Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, Chris Penn

Votes: 772,758 | Gross: $2.83M

Almost Shakespearian in it's finale. The last flash-back in particular (Mr. White) is phenomenal! What a gem!

27. The Big Combo (1955)

Not Rated | 87 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

A police lt. is ordered to stop investigating deadly crime boss Mr. Brown, because he hasn't been able to get any hard evidence against him. He then goes after Brown's girlfriend who despises him, for information instead.

Director: Joseph H. Lewis | Stars: Cornel Wilde, Richard Conte, Jean Wallace, Brian Donlevy

Votes: 5,161

Hard-boiled heaven.

28. Rififi (1955)

Not Rated | 118 min | Crime, Thriller

97 Metascore

Four men plan a technically perfect crime, but the human element intervenes...

Director: Jules Dassin | Stars: Jean Servais, Carl Möhner, Robert Manuel, Janine Darcey

Votes: 21,360 | Gross: $0.06M

It's a shame that Jules Dassin was blacklisted in the insane commie-hunt craze of McCarthyism.

The expressionistic shots near the end are just incredible. The silent heist is just excellent as well. It features a wonderfully cool, tough, protagonist played by Jean Servais.

Prix Méliès, French Syndicate of Cinema Critics Best Director, Cannes

29. Insomnia (1997)

Not Rated | 96 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

In a Norwegian city with a 24-hour daylight cycle a Swedish murder investigator has been brought in on a special case. Sleep deprived, he makes a horrible mistake which is discovered by the killer he has been hunting.

Director: Erik Skjoldbjærg | Stars: Stellan Skarsgård, Sverre Anker Ousdal, Maria Mathiesen, Gisken Armand

Votes: 11,383 | Gross: $0.22M

This is vastly superior to Christoper Nolan's remake in 2002 in every way. It has a really nice, spare, grey aesthetic to the look of the film, and what a wonderful central performance by Stellan Skarsgard. It also features an excellent electronic score. Very highly recommenced.

30. Key Largo (1948)

Not Rated | 100 min | Action, Crime, Drama

A man visits his old friend's hotel and finds a gangster running things. As a hurricane approaches, the two end up confronting each other.

Director: John Huston | Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Edward G. Robinson, Lauren Bacall, Lionel Barrymore

Votes: 32,082

So enjoyable to see time and time again. This type of role/performance is why Bogart is such a household name to this day.

31. Memento (2000)

R | 113 min | Mystery, Thriller

80 Metascore

A man juggles searching for his wife's murderer and keeping his short-term memory loss from being an obstacle.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Guy Pearce, Carrie-Anne Moss, Joe Pantoliano, Mark Boone Junior

Votes: 972,580 | Gross: $25.54M

The pacing of the flash-backs in this Neo-Noir is simply too perfect for words. Love the ambient score as well.

32. Crossfire (1947)

Unrated | 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: 6,274 | Gross: $1.30M

A message film that still works beautifully. Bravo. How many great film noirs featured Robert Ryan? He had a wonderful flexibility to what type of character he could play.

As a side note, Richard Conte and Richard Widmark, though not in this film, comes to mind as a similarly flexible noir actors.

33. The Killing (1956)

Not Rated | 85 min | Crime, Drama, Film-Noir

Crooks plan and execute a daring race-track robbery.

Director: Stanley Kubrick | Stars: Sterling Hayden, Coleen Gray, Vince Edwards, Jay C. Flippen

Votes: 69,563

This is a great early Stanley Kubrick heist film. I didn't think much of his 'Killer's Kiss' (to be fair, made on a tiny budget), but this film is terrific.

34. Bob le Flambeur (1956)

PG | 98 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

80 Metascore

After losing big, an aging gambler decides to assemble a team to rob a casino.

Director: Jean-Pierre Melville | Stars: Roger Duchesne, Isabelle Corey, Daniel Cauchy, Guy Decomble

Votes: 8,697 | Gross: $0.02M

Pre new-wave gem. Very cool, early-ish J.P. Melville caper picture.

35. Heat (1995)

R | 170 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

76 Metascore

A group of professional bank robbers start to feel the heat from police when they unknowingly leave a clue at their latest heist, while both sides attempt to find balance between their personal and professional lives.

Director: Michael Mann | Stars: Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Val Kilmer, Jon Voight

Votes: 493,706 | Gross: $67.44M

The bank job shoot out is a bit of heaven.

36. Nightcrawler (2014)

R | 118 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

76 Metascore

When Louis Bloom, a con man desperate for work, muscles into the world of L.A. crime journalism, he blurs the line between observer and participant to become the star of his own story.

Director: Dan Gilroy | Stars: Jake Gyllenhaal, Rene Russo, Bill Paxton, Riz Ahmed

Votes: 369,700 | Gross: $32.38M

What a great film. Love it! You'll never see the local crime news the same. Jake Gyllenhaal's cold grin is just unforgettable.

37. Farewell, My Lovely (1975)

R | 95 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

Los Angeles private eye Philip Marlowe is hired by paroled convict Moose Malloy to find his girlfriend Velma, former seedy nightclub dancer.

Director: Dick Richards | Stars: Robert Mitchum, Charlotte Rampling, John Ireland, Sylvia Miles

Votes: 4,982

Having just seen this film for the second time, I was so impressed by it. This pretty much has the super high quality of "Chinatown" (another 70's era noir). It's a more faithful film version of the same Chandler story as the film "Murder My Sweet". The set decoration, score, cinematography, acting, and storytelling are all excellent.

For some reason this film is really under-rated. It is a top notch neo-noir.

38. Casque d'Or (1952)

Not Rated | 94 min | Crime, Drama, Romance

In an open-air dance hall, the members of Leca's gang are relaxing with their ladies. One of them, Marie, aka "Casque d'Or" (Golden Helmet) meets Manda, a carpenter. Her man Roland belongs ... See full summary »

Director: Jacques Becker | Stars: Simone Signoret, Serge Reggiani, Claude Dauphin, Raymond Bussières

Votes: 3,976

A belle epoque noir love story. Excellent in every way. Jacques Becker, who apprenticed as AD under Jean Renoir, was a fantastic director: Le Trou, Touchez Pas Au Grisbi and this film are all gold.

39. The Woman in the Window (1944)

Not Rated | 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: 10,824

A more like-able film than "Scarlet Street" to be sure (with the same 3 principal actors). Very fun suspense film. Maybe the best of the Fritz Lang noirs. I watch it often.

40. Laura (1944)

Not Rated | 88 min | Drama, Film-Noir, Mystery

A police detective falls in love with the woman whose murder he is investigating.

Director: Otto Preminger | Stars: Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Clifton Webb, Vincent Price

Votes: 36,278

It may be more detective/murder mystery, but it is considered a Noir by most critics so I've put it on my list. It is one of my most often watched films. Such a pleasant, easy to watch film. Oh yeah, and Gene Tierney is awfully easy on the eyes...

41. Kiss Me Deadly (1955)

Not Rated | 106 min | Crime, Film-Noir, Mystery

A doomed female hitchhiker pulls Mike Hammer into a deadly whirlpool of intrigue, revolving around a mysterious "great whatsit".

Director: Robert Aldrich | Stars: Ralph Meeker, Albert Dekker, Paul Stewart, Juano Hernandez

Votes: 15,714

The crescendo of the classic noir cycle is realized in this wonderfully dark detective film. Highly recommended.

42. Hard Eight (1996)

R | 101 min | Crime, Drama

78 Metascore

Professional gambler Sydney teaches John the tricks of the trade. John does well until he falls for cocktail waitress Clementine.

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson | Stars: Philip Baker Hall, John C. Reilly, Gwyneth Paltrow, Samuel L. Jackson

Votes: 33,095 | Gross: $0.22M

P T Anderson's Noir impresses from the first viewing, and holds up, no check that, it gets even better when subsequently viewed. I've heard that PTA was heavily influenced buy J.P. Melville's "Bob Le Flambeur". That makes sense to me.

I've the feeling this was very much a below the radar film. No one ever talks about this film, because next to no one has seen it. What a shame.

43. Ex Machina (2014)

R | 108 min | Drama, Mystery, Sci-Fi

78 Metascore

A young programmer is selected to participate in a ground-breaking experiment in synthetic intelligence by evaluating the human qualities of a breath-taking humanoid A.I.

Director: Alex Garland | Stars: Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson, Oscar Isaac, Sonoya Mizuno

Votes: 384,962 | Gross: $25.44M

Tech-noir heaven. Alicia Vicander is perfect as the cyborg femme fatale.

I like how the film keeps you guessing about the motives of Oscar Issac's character throughout the film.

44. The Maltese Falcon (1941)

Not Rated | 100 min | Film-Noir, Mystery

96 Metascore

A private detective takes on a case that involves him with three eccentric criminals, a gorgeous liar, and their quest for a priceless statuette.

Director: John Huston | Stars: Humphrey Bogart, Mary Astor, Gladys George, Peter Lorre

Votes: 133,146

Just a wonderful, non menacing, early Noir. The cast, with supporting players like Peter Lorre, and Sydney Greenstreet, add so much to this film, and keep me coming back for more. I probably watch it twice a year. Lots of twists and turns to the story keep things very interesting. Required viewing for the genre.

45. Drive (I) (2011)

R | 100 min | Crime, Drama

78 Metascore

A mysterious Hollywood stuntman and mechanic moonlights as a getaway driver and finds himself in trouble when he helps out his neighbor.

Director: Nicolas Winding Refn | Stars: Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Albert Brooks

Votes: 493,194 | Gross: $35.06M

**Violence Warning**

A great genre film that's lifted to the level of best getaway driver film ever. It features a great love story, a couple of good car chases, wonderful cinematography, music, and editing, but be warned, it's a very violent film. I scarcely could have enjoyed it more.

46. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (2009)

R | 122 min | Crime, Drama

69 Metascore

Terence McDonagh is a drug- and gambling-addled detective in post-Katrina New Orleans investigating the killing of five Senegalese immigrants.

Director: Werner Herzog | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes, Russell M. Haeuser, Val Kilmer

Votes: 68,831 | Gross: $1.70M

Werner Herzog's skewed cop film is great. Nicolas Cage is impressive in this, possibly as good as he was in 'Adaptation'. Keep in mind the thought of Herzog poking you in the rib with his elbow about 3/4 into the film though (can't say more than that without spoiling anything) and you should really enjoy this picture.

47. Bullitt (1968)

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

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: 52,038 | Gross: $42.30M

Wonderful score by Lalo Schifrin, and of course there's McQueen. Known for the car chase, and winning the best editing Oscar in '68, but the whole film is very enjoyable. The story, to me has a slightly elusive quality to it when all is said and done which lends the film well to repeated viewings.