Film noir

The following list is the best of the best in film noir. Please leave a comment if a title is missing you feel should be on the list.

12 Angry Men
Ace in the Hole – 4+
Anatomy of a Murder – 5-
Angels with Dirty Faces – 4+ (noir precursor)
Asphalt Jungle, The – 5
Beat the Devil
Big Combo, The – 5-
Big Heat, The – 5
Big Sleep, The – 5- (4+)

Blast of Silence – 4
Blue Dahlia – 5-
Brute Force – 4+
Casablanca – 5
(disqualified)
Criss Cross
Crossfire – 5-

D.O.A. – 5-
Dark Passage – 4
Desperate Hours – 4+ (5-)
Detour – 4+
Double Indemnity – 5
Gilda – 5-

Glass Key
Gun Crazy – 4+
Honeymoon Killers, The 5-
In a Lonely Place – 5
Killers, The
Killing, The – 5-
Kiss Me Deadly – 5-
Lady From Shanghai, The – 5-
Lady in the Lake
Laura – 5-
Maltese Falcon, The – 5-

Mask of Dimitrios – 4+
Murder, My Sweet 5-
Naked City – 4
Night and the City – 4+
Night of the Hunter, The
Nightmare Alley – 4

No Man’s Woman – 4
Notorious – 5-

Odd Man Out – 5
On Dangerous Ground – 4+ (5-)
Out of the Past – 5
Pickup on South Street – 5-
Postman Always Rings Twice, The – 4

Raw Deal – 4+ (5-)
Rebecca – 5
Rope – 5-

Scarlet Street – 5
Shadow of a Doubt – 5-
Strangers on a Train – 5- (4+)
Sunset Boulevard – 5
Sweet Smell of Success
They Drive by Night – 4- (questionable noir)
Thieves’ Highway – 4+
Third Man, The – 5
Touch of Evil – 5
Woman in the Window, The – 4+
Wrong Man, The – 5

White Heat – 4+

*The film noir section has been added because these films tells their stories along particular lines that coincide with many of the darker tales on the site–the stories in which I’m most interested. In a way, film noir has more in common with horror writing and other dark storytelling than most horror movies, which tend to specialize in blood and audible shocks for horror. Film noir is not about blood or audio shocks; it’s about the reality of the dark side of human nature, as is most of the best writing in horror and dark speculative fiction.

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