25 great neo-noirs

by georgehatz | created - 27 Jul 2011 | updated - 16 May 2012 | Public
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1. Le Deuxième 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: 4,692

2. Chinatown (1974)

R | 130 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

92 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: 269,902 | Gross: $29.20M

3. Blood Simple (1984)

R | 99 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

81 Metascore

A rich but jealous man hires a private investigator to kill his cheating wife and her new man. But, when blood is involved, nothing is simple.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: John Getz, Frances McDormand, Dan Hedaya, M. Emmet Walsh

Votes: 80,729 | Gross: $2.15M

4. Blast of Silence (1961)

Not Rated | 77 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

A hired killer from Cleveland has a job to do on a second-string mob boss in New York. But a special girl from his past, and a fat gun dealer with pet rats, each gets in his way.

Director: Allen Baron | Stars: Allen Baron, Molly McCarthy, Larry Tucker, Peter Clune

Votes: 3,439

5. The Man Who Wasn't There (2001)

R | 116 min | Crime, Drama

73 Metascore

A laconic, chain-smoking barber blackmails his wife's boss and lover for money to invest in dry cleaning, but his plan goes terribly wrong.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: Billy Bob Thornton, Frances McDormand, Michael Badalucco, James Gandolfini

Votes: 98,124 | Gross: $7.49M

6. Miller's Crossing (1990)

R | 115 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

66 Metascore

Tom Regan, an advisor to a Prohibition-era crime boss, tries to keep the peace between warring mobs but gets caught in divided loyalties.

Directors: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen | Stars: Gabriel Byrne, Albert Finney, John Turturro, Marcia Gay Harden

Votes: 119,330 | Gross: $5.08M

7. 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: 40,126 | Gross: $0.04M

8. The Long Goodbye (1973)

R | 112 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama

87 Metascore

Private investigator Philip Marlowe helps a friend out of a jam then gets implicated in his wife's murder.

Director: Robert Altman | Stars: Elliott Gould, Nina van Pallandt, Sterling Hayden, Mark Rydell

Votes: 22,924 | Gross: $0.96M

9. Le Doulos (1962)

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: 7,978 | Gross: $0.08M

10. 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: 19,527 | Gross: $0.37M

11. Blue Velvet (1986)

R | 120 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller

76 Metascore

The discovery of a severed human ear found in a field leads a young man on an investigation related to a beautiful, mysterious nightclub singer and a group of psychopathic criminals who have kidnapped her child.

Director: David Lynch | Stars: Isabella Rossellini, Kyle MacLachlan, Dennis Hopper, Laura Dern

Votes: 165,217 | Gross: $8.55M

12. Klute (1971)

R | 114 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

A small-town detective searching for a missing man has only one lead: a connection with a New York prostitute.

Director: Alan J. Pakula | Stars: Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland, Charles Cioffi, Roy Scheider

Votes: 19,638

13. The Killing of a Chinese Bookie (1976)

R | 135 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

65 Metascore

A proud strip club owner is forced to come to terms with himself as a man, when his gambling addiction gets him in hot water with the mob, who offer him only one alternative.

Director: John Cassavetes | Stars: Ben Gazzara, Timothy Carey, Seymour Cassel, Robert Phillips

Votes: 9,708

14. Red Rock West (1993)

R | 98 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

79 Metascore

Upon arriving to a small town, a drifter is mistaken for a hitman, but when the real hitman arrives, complications ensue.

Director: John Dahl | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Dennis Hopper, Lara Flynn Boyle, Craig Reay

Votes: 18,722 | Gross: $2.50M

15. L.A. Confidential (1997)

R | 138 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

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: 499,653 | Gross: $64.62M

16. Bound (1996)

R | 109 min | Crime, Romance, Thriller

61 Metascore

Corky, a tough female ex con and her lover Violet concoct a scheme to steal millions of stashed mob money and pin the blame on Violet's crooked boyfriend Caesar.

Directors: Lana Wachowski, Lilly Wachowski | Stars: Jennifer Tilly, Gina Gershon, Joe Pantoliano, John P. Ryan

Votes: 47,640 | Gross: $3.80M

17. Devil in a Blue Dress (1995)

R | 102 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

78 Metascore

An African-American man is hired to find a woman, and gets mixed up in a murderous political scandal.

Director: Carl Franklin | Stars: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals, Don Cheadle

Votes: 16,141 | Gross: $16.03M

18. After Dark, My Sweet (1990)

R | 114 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

78 Metascore

An ex-boxer is drifting around after escaping from the mental hospital. He meets a widow who convinces him to help fix up the neglected estate her ex-husband left. Her Uncle talks them both... See full summary »

Director: James Foley | Stars: Jason Patric, Rachel Ward, Bruce Dern, Rocky Giordani

Votes: 2,985 | Gross: $2.68M

19. Mickey One (1965)

Not Rated | 93 min | Crime, Drama

After the mob tries to kill him for an unknown reason, a comedian steals the identity of a homeless man and goes on the run.

Director: Arthur Penn | Stars: Warren Beatty, Alexandra Stewart, Hurd Hatfield, Franchot Tone

Votes: 1,283

20. Harper (1966)

Not Rated | 121 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

51 Metascore

Lew Harper, a cool private investigator, is hired by a wealthy California matron to locate her kidnapped husband.

Director: Jack Smight | Stars: Paul Newman, Lauren Bacall, Julie Harris, Arthur Hill

Votes: 7,561

21. The Drowning Pool (1975)

PG | 108 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

48 Metascore

A big-city private detective travels to the Deep South to help out an old girlfriend who is worried that her husband will find out that she is cheating on him.

Director: Stuart Rosenberg | Stars: Paul Newman, Joanne Woodward, Anthony Franciosa, Murray Hamilton

Votes: 4,381

22. Point Blank (1967)

Not Rated | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

After being double-crossed and left for dead, a mysterious man named Walker single-mindedly tries to retrieve the money that was stolen from him.

Director: John Boorman | Stars: Lee Marvin, Angie Dickinson, Keenan Wynn, Carroll O'Connor

Votes: 16,943

23. Night Moves (1975)

R | 100 min | Crime, Mystery, Thriller

82 Metascore

Los Angeles private investigator Harry Moseby is hired by a client to find her runaway teenage daughter. Moseby tracks the daughter down, only to stumble upon something much more intriguing and sinister.

Director: Arthur Penn | Stars: Gene Hackman, Jennifer Warren, Edward Binns, Harris Yulin

Votes: 10,594

24. Série noire (1979)

Not Rated | 111 min | Crime, Drama

Franck Poupart is a slightly neurotic door-to-door salesman in a sinister part of Paris' suburbs. He meets Mona, a teenager, who's been made a prostitute by her own aunt. Franck would like ... See full summary »

Director: Alain Corneau | Stars: Patrick Dewaere, Myriam Boyer, Marie Trintignant, Bernard Blier

Votes: 2,267

25. Shoot the Piano Player (1960)

Not Rated | 92 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller

Charlie Kohler is a piano player in a bar. The waitress Lena is in love with him. One of Charlie's brother, Chico, a crook, takes refuge in the bar because he is chased by two gangsters, ... See full summary »

Director: François Truffaut | Stars: Charles Aznavour, Marie Dubois, Nicole Berger, Michèle Mercier

Votes: 15,697



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