100 Greatest Film Noir Movies

Criteria: These Greatest 'Film Noir' Movies were chosen for their direction, acting, storyline, cinematography, box office success and popularity. These films were NOT chosen for how highly rated they are overall, but how they rate in the subject of "Film Noir Movies".

Background: 'Film Noir' was the term given by French film critic Nino Frank in 1946 to Hollywood crime films playing in France following WWII. The 'Golden Age' of Film Noir is regarded to be the 1940s and 1950s, and as with any set dates there is always some overlap of the style. However 'Noir' style films from 1960 and on have been labeled 'Neo-Noir'. (See list below top 100)

Elements of 'Film Noir': Night-time city streets; morally weak private eye, detective, or other protagonist; femme fatale (a beautiful but treacherous woman); crime of passion or money; high-contrast lighting and distorted shadows; paranoia; corruption; an ill-fated relationship; narrative in the "first-person". Any mixture or slight variation of this soup of elements constitutes a "Noir" film. (A precise definition has never been set in stone)
 Title - (Year, Director) (Main Actors)
1. The Maltese Falcon
(1941, John Huston) (Humphrey Bogart, Peter Lorre, Mary Astor)
2. Double Indemnity
(1944, Billy Wilder) (Fred MacMurray, Barbara Stanwyck, Edward G. Robinson)
3. The Big Sleep
(1946, Howard Hawks) (Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, John Ridgely)
4. Sunset Boulevard
(1950, Billy Wilder) (Gloria Swanson, William Holden, Erich von Stroheim)
5. The Third Man
(1949, Carol Reed) (Orson Welles, Joseph Cotten, Trevor Howard, Alida Valli)
6. M
(1931, Fritz Lang) (Peter Lorre, Ellen Widmann, Inge Landgut, Otto Wernicke)
7. Notorious
(1946, Alfred Hitchcock) (Cary Grant, Ingrid Bergman, Claude Rains, Louis Calhern)
8. Touch Of Evil
(1958, Orson Welles) (Charlton Heston, Janet Leigh, Orson Welles, Dennis Weaver)
9. Criss Cross
(1949, Robert Siodmak) (Burt Lancaster, Yvonne De Carlo, Stephen McNally)
10. Strangers On A Train
(1951, Alfred Hitchcock) (Farley Granger, Ruth Roman, Robert Walker)
11. Out Of The Past
(1947, Jacques Tourneur) (Robert Mitchum, Kirk Douglas, Rhonda Fleming)
12. The Big Combo
(1955, Joseph H. Lewis) (Cornel Wilde, Richard Conte, Jean Wallace)
13. The Night Of The Hunter
(1955, Charles Laughton) (Robert Mitchum, Shelley Winters, Lillian Gish)
14. The Killing
(1956, Stanley Kubrick) (Sterling Hayden, Coleen Gray, Vince Edwards)
15. Key Largo
(1948, John Huston) (Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Edward G. Robinson)
16. The Killers
(1946, Robert Siodmak) (Burt Lancaster, Ava Gardner, Edmond O'Brien)
17. I Am A Fugitive From A Chain Gang
(1932, Mervyn LeRoy) (Paul Muni, Glenda Farrell, Preston Foster)
18. Ace In The Hole
(1951, Billy Wilder) (Kirk Douglas, Jan Sterling, Robert Arthur, Richard Benedict)
19. Laura
(1944, Otto Preminger) (Gene Tierney, Dana Andrews, Clifton Webb, Vincent Price)
20. White Heat
(1949, Raoul Walsh) (James Cagney, Virginia Mayo, Edmond O'Brien, Steve Cochran)
21. The Lost Weekend
(1945, Billy Wilder) (Ray Milland, Jane Wyman, Phillip Terry)
22. Angels With Dirty Faces
(1938, Michael Curtiz) (James Cagney, Pat O'Brien, Humphrey Bogart)
23. Rififi
(1955, Jules Dassin) (Jean Servais, Carl Möhner, Robert Manuel, Janine Darcey)
24. Sweet Smell of Success
(1957, Alexander Mackendrick) (Burt Lancaster, Tony Curtis, Martin Milner)
25. The Blue Dahlia
(1946, George Marshall) (Alan Ladd, Veronica Lake, William Bendix, Howard Da Silva)
26. Night And The City
(1950, Jules Dassin) (Richard Widmark, Gene Tierney, Herbert Lom)
27. The Set-Up
(1949, Robert Wise) (Robert Ryan, Audrey Totter, George Tobias, Alan Baxter)
28. Scarface
(1932, Howard Hawks) (Paul Muni, Ann Dvorak, George Raft, Boris Karloff)
29. Shadow Of A Doubt
(1943, Alfred Hitchcock) (Teresa Wright, Joseph Cotten, Macdonald Carey)
30. The Big Heat
(1953, Fritz Lang) (Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, Lee Marvin)
31. The Asphalt Jungle
(1950, John Huston) (Sterling Hayden, Marilyn Monroe, James Whitmore)
32. Nightmare Alley
(1947, Edmund Goulding) (Tyrone Power, Joan Blondell, Coleen Gray)
33. Body And Soul
(1947, Robert Rossen) (John Garfield, Lilli Palmer, William Conrad)
34. In A Lonely Place
(1950, Nicholas Ray) (Humphrey Bogart, Gloria Grahame, Frank Lovejoy)
35. The Lady from Shanghai
(1947, Orson Welles) (Orson Welles, Rita Hayworth, Everett Sloane)
36. Ossessione
(1943, Luchino Visconti) (Clara Calamai, Massimo Girotti, Dhia Cristiani)
37. The Woman in the Window
(1944, Fritz Lang) (Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Raymond Massey)
38. Pickup On South Street
(1953, Samuel Fuller) (Richard Widmark, Jean Peters, Thelma Ritter)
39. Scarlet Street
(1945, Fritz Lang) (Edward G. Robinson, Joan Bennett, Dan Duryea)
40. Kiss Of Death
(1947, Henry Hathaway) (Victor Mature, Brian Donlevy, Richard Widmark)
41. Gun Crazy (aka: Deadly Is The Female)
(1950, Joseph H. Lewis) (Peggy Cummins, John Dall)
42. Mildred Pierce
(1945, Michael Curtiz) (Joan Crawford, Jack Carson, Eve Arden)
43. Where The Sidewalk Ends
(1950, Otto Preminger) (Dana Andrews, Gene Tierney, Gary Merrill)
44. The Naked City
(1948, Jules Dassin) (Barry Fitzgerald, Howard Duff, Dorothy Hart)
45. Gilda
(1946, Charles Vidor) (Rita Hayworth, Glenn Ford, George Macready)
46. Murder, My Sweet
(1944, Edward Dmytryk) (Dick Powell, Claire Trevor, Anne Shirley)
47. Kiss Me Deadly
(1955, Robert Aldrich) (Ralph Meeker, Albert Dekker, Paul Stewart)
48. Sudden Fear
(1952, ) (Joan Crawford, Jack Palance, Gloria Grahame, Mike Connors)
49. This Gun For Hire
(1942, Frank Tuttle) (Veronica Lake, Robert Preston, Alan Ladd)
50. Dark Passage
(1947, Delmer Daves) (Humphrey Bogart, Lauren Bacall, Agnes Moorehead)
51. The Postman Always Rings Twice
(1946, Tay Garnett) (Lana Turner, John Garfield, Cecil Kellaway)
52. Fury
(1936, Fritz Lang) (Spencer Tracy, Sylvia Sidney, Walter Abel, Bruce Cabot)
53. Leave Her To Heaven
(1945, John M. Stahl) (Gene Tierney, Cornel Wilde, Vincent Price)
54. D.O.A.
(1950, Rudolph Maté) (Edmond O'Brien, Pamela Britton, Beverly Garland)
55. Kansas City Confidential
(1952, Phil Karlson) (John Payne, Coleen Gray, Preston Foster)
56. Force Of Evil
(1948, Abraham Polonsky) (John Garfield, Thomas Gomez, Marie Windsor)
57. Crossfire
(1947, Edward Dmytryk) (Robert Young, Robert Mitchum, Robert Ryan, Gloria Grahame)
58. The Strange Love Of Martha Ivers
(1946, L. Milestone) (Barbara Stanwyck, Van Heflin, Kirk Douglas)
59. House Of Strangers
(1949, Joseph L. Mankiewicz) (Edward G. Robinson, Susan Hayward)
60. Scandal Sheet
(1952, Phil Karlson) (Broderick Crawford, Donna Reed, John Derek, Harry Morgan)
61. The Wrong Man
(1956, Alfred Hitchcock) (Henry Fonda, Vera Miles, Anthony Quayle)
62. Odds Against Tomorrow
(1959, Robert Wise) (Harry Belafonte, Robert Ryan, Shelley Winters)
63. Raw Deal
(1948, Anthony Mann) (Dennis O'Keefe, Claire Trevor, Marsha Hunt, John Ireland)
64. Act of Violence
(1948, Fred Zinnemann) (Van Heflin, Robert Ryan, Janet Leigh, Mary Astor)
65. The Stranger
(1946, Orson Welles) (Edward G. Robinson, Loretta Young, Orson Welles)
66. You Only Live Once
(1937, Fritz Lang) (Henry Fonda, Sylvia Sidney, Barton MacLane)
67. Angel Face
(1952, Otto Preminger) (Robert Mitchum, Jean Simmons, Mona Freeman)
68. Pitfall
(1948, André De Toth) (Dick Powell, Lizabeth Scott, Jane Wyatt, Raymond Burr)
69. Detour
(1945, Edgar G. Ulmer) (Tom Neal, Ann Savage, Claudia Drake, Edmund MacDonald)
70. On Dangerous Ground
(1952, Nicholas Ray) (Ida Lupino, Robert Ryan, Ward Bond)
71. Panic In The Streets
(1950, Elia Kazan) (Richard Widmark, Paul Douglas, Barbara Bel Geddes)
72. Possessed
(1947, Curtis Bernhardt) (Joan Crawford, Van Heflin, Raymond Massey)
73. Human Desire
(1954, Fritz Lang) (Glenn Ford, Gloria Grahame, Broderick Crawford)
74. The Street With No Name
(1948, William Keighley) (Mark Stevens, Richard Widmark, Lloyd Nolan)
75. Fallen Angel
(1945, Otto Preminger) (Alice Faye, Dana Andrews, Linda Darnell, John Carradine)
76. Phantom Lady
(1944, Robert Siodmak) (Franchot Tone, Ella Raines, Alan Curtis)
77. Cry of the City - (1948, Robert Siodmak) (Victor Mature, Richard Conte, Shelley Winters)
78. Dead Reckoning
(1947, John Cromwell) (Humphrey Bogart, Lizabeth Scott, Morris Carnovsky)
79. T-Men
(1947, Anthony Mann) (Dennis O'Keefe, Mary Meade, Alfred Ryder, June Lockhart)
80. Party Girl
(1958, Nicholas Ray) (Robert Taylor, Cyd Charisse, Lee J. Cobb, John Ireland)
81. The File On Thelma Jordon
(1950, Robert Siodmak) (Barbara Stanwyck, Wendell Corey, Paul Kelly)
82. The Brasher Doubloon
(1947, John Brahm) (George Montgomery, Nancy Guild, Conrad Janis)
83. Clash by Night
(1952, Fritz Lang) (Barbara Stanwyck, Paul Douglas, Robert Ryan, Marilyn Monroe)
84. Mystery Street
(1950, John Sturges) (Ricardo Montalban, Sally Forrest, Bruce Bennett)
85. Niagara
(1953, Henry Hathaway) (Marilyn Monroe, Joseph Cotten, Jean Peters, Max Showalter)
86. While The City Sleeps
(1956, Fritz Lang) (Dana Andrews, Rhonda Fleming, George Sanders)
87. Side Street
(1950, Anthony Mann) (Joe Norson, Ellen Norson, James Craig)
88. The Big Knife
(1955, Robert Aldrich) (Jack Palance, Ida Lupino, Rod Steiger, Shelley Winters)
89. Border Incident
(1949, Anthony Mann) (Pablo Rodriguez, Jack Bearnes, Howard Da Silva)
90. Desperate
(1947, Anthony Mann) (Steve Brodie, Audrey Long, Raymond Burr, Jason Robards Sr.)
91. Whirlpool
(1949, Otto Preminger) (Gene Tierney, Richard Conte, José Ferrer)
92. Journey Into Fear
(1943, Norman Foster, Orson Welles) (Joseph Cotten, Dolores del Rio)
93. Undercurrent
(1946, Vincente Minnelli) (Katharine Hepburn, Robert Taylor, Robert Mitchum)
94. Hollow Triumph
(1948, Steve Sekely) (Paul Henreid, Joan Bennett, Eduard Franz)
95. Beyond A Reasonable Doubt
(1956, Fritz Lang) (Dana Andrews, Joan Fontaine, Sidney Blackmer)
96. House Of Bamboo
(1955, Samuel Fuller) (Robert Ryan, Robert Stack, Shirley Yamaguchi)
97. Lady in the Lake
(1947, Robert Montgomery) (Robert Montgomery, Audrey Totter, Lloyd Nolan)
98. The Two Mrs. Carrolls
(1947, Peter Godfrey) (Humphrey Bogart, Barbara Stanwyck, Alexis Smith)
99. Where Danger Lives
(1950, John Farrow) (Robert Mitchum, Claude Rains, Maureen O'Sullivan)
100. Stranger On The Third Floor
(1940, Boris Ingster) (Peter Lorre, John McGuire, Margaret Tallichet)

25 Greatest Neo-Noir films
(1960 - present day)

Modern films that incorporate the moods, themes, and atmosphere of classic Film Noirs.

  1. Chinatown
(1974, Roman Polanski) (Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston)
  2. L.A. Confidential
(1997, Curtis Hanson) (Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Guy Pearce)
  3. The Manchurian Candidate
(1962, John Frankenheimer) (Frank Sinatra, Laurence Harvey)
  4. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
(2005, Shane Black) (Robert Downey Jr., Val Kilmer, Michelle Monaghan)
  5. Se7en
(1995, David Fincher) (Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman, Gwyneth Paltrow)
  6. Cape Fear
(1962, J. Lee Thompson) (Gregory Peck, Robert Mitchum, Polly Bergen)
  7. Blade Runner
(1982, Ridley Scott) (Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Daryl Hannah)
  8. Blood Simple
(1984, Joel Coen) (John Getz, Frances McDormand, Dan Hedaya)
  9. Sin City
(2005, Frank Miller) (Jessica Alba, Benicio Del Toro, Bruce Willis)
10. The Usual Suspects
(1995, Bryan Singer) (Stephen Baldwin, Gabriel Byrne, Benicio Del Toro)
11. Body Heat
(1981, Lawrence Kasdan) (William Hurt, Kathleen Turner, Richard Crenna)
12. Klute
(1971, Alan J. Pakula) (Jane Fonda, Donald Sutherland, Roy Scheider)
13. Le Samouraï
(1967, Jean-Pierre Melville) (Alain Delon, Francois Périer, Nathalie Delon)
14. The Grifters
(1990, Stephen Frears) (Anjelica Huston, John Cusack, Annette Bening)
15. Tirez sur le pianiste (aka Shoot The Pianist)
(1960, F. Truffaut) (Charles Aznavour, Marie Dubois)
16. Fargo
(1996, Joel Coen) (William H. Macy, Steve Buscemi, Kristin Rudrüd, Peter Stormare)
17. Night Moves
(1975, Arthur Penn) (Gene Hackman, Jennifer Warren, James Woods)
18. Hammett
(1982, Wim Wenders) (Frederic Forrest, Peter Boyle, Marilu Henner)
19. Devil In A Blue Dress
(1995, Carl Franklin) (Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals)
20. Blue Velvet
(1986, David Lynch) (Isabella Rossellini, Kyle MacLachlan, Dennis Hopper)
21. The Naked Kiss
(1964, Samuel Fuller) (Constance Towers, Anthony Eisley, Michael Dante)
22. Dark City
(1998, Alex Proyas) (William Hurt, Rufus Sewell, Kiefer Sutherland)
23. Shock Corridor
(1963, Samuel Fuller) (Peter Breck, Constance Towers, Gene Evans)
24. The Man Who Wasn't There
(2001, Joel Coen) (Billy Bob Thornton, Frances McDormand)
25. The Public Eye
(1992, Howard Franklin) (Joe Pesci, Richard Riehle, Bryan Travis Smith)

Last Updated: 2012-11-28