Top 50 underrated film-noir movies

01.
The Letter
95 min | 1940 |
7.6 (11874 votes)
|
8.55 (120 reviews)

The wife of a rubber plantation administrator shoots a man to death and claims it was self-defense, but a letter in her own hand may prove her undoing.

02.
The Asphalt Jungle
112 min | 1950 |
7.9 (24486 votes)
|
8.69 (131 reviews)

A major heist goes off as planned, but then double crosses, bad luck and solid police work cause everything to unravel.

03.
Angels with Dirty Faces
97 min | 1938 |
7.9 (19773 votes)
|
8.67 (129 reviews)

A priest tries to stop a gangster from corrupting a group of street kids.

04.
The Set-Up
73 min | 1949 |
7.9 (8046 votes)
|
8.66 (76 reviews)

Expecting the usual loss, a boxing manager takes bribes from a betting gangster without telling his fighter.

05.
The Man with the Golden Arm
119 min | 1955 |
7.4 (9741 votes)
|
8.13 (72 reviews)

A strung-out junkie deals with a demoralizing drug addiction while his crippled wife and card sharks pull him down.

06.
Double Indemnity
107 min | 1944 |
8.3 (146431 votes)
|
9.0 (373 reviews)

An insurance representative lets himself be talked by a seductive housewife into a murder/insurance fraud scheme that arouses the suspicion of an insurance investigator.

07.
The Lost Weekend
101 min | 1945 |
7.9 (33949 votes)
|
8.55 (145 reviews)

The desperate life of a chronic alcoholic is followed through a four-day drinking bout.

08.
Ace in the Hole
111 min | 1951 |
8.1 (32443 votes)
|
8.75 (155 reviews)

A frustrated former big-city journalist now stuck working for an Albuquerque newspaper exploits a story about a man trapped in a cave to rekindle his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus.

09.
This Gun for Hire
81 min | 1942 |
7.4 (8433 votes)
|
8.03 (69 reviews)

When assassin Philip Raven shoots a blackmailer and his beautiful female companion dead, he is paid off in marked bills by his treasonous employer who is working with foreign spies.

10.
Sweet Smell of Success
96 min | 1957 |
8.0 (28927 votes)
|
8.63 (137 reviews)

Powerful but unethical Broadway columnist J.J. Hunsecker coerces unscrupulous press agent Sidney Falco into breaking up his sister's romance with a jazz musician.

11.
Sunset Blvd.
110 min | 1950 |
8.4 (205681 votes)
|
9.03 (571 reviews)

A screenwriter develops a dangerous relationship with a faded film star determined to make a triumphant return.

12.
The Killers
103 min | 1946 |
7.8 (19655 votes)
|
8.42 (108 reviews)

Hit men kill an unresisting victim, and investigator Reardon uncovers his past involvement with beautiful, deadly Kitty Collins.

13.
The 39 Steps
86 min | 1935 |
7.7 (53059 votes)
|
8.32 (237 reviews)

A man in London tries to help a counter-espionage Agent. But when the Agent is killed, and the man stands accused, he must go on the run to save himself and stop a spy ring which is trying to steal top secret information.

14.
Out of the Past
97 min | 1947 |
8.0 (33600 votes)
|
8.61 (221 reviews)

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.

15.
Odd Man Out
116 min | 1947 |
7.7 (9137 votes)
|
8.3 (93 reviews)

A wounded Irish nationalist leader attempts to evade police following a failed robbery in Belfast.

16.
The Wrong Man
105 min | 1956 |
7.4 (26262 votes)
|
7.98 (143 reviews)

In 1953, an innocent man named Christopher Emanuel "Manny" Balestrero is arrested after being mistaken for an armed robber.

17.
Murder, My Sweet
90 min | 1944 |
7.6 (12375 votes)
|
8.17 (97 reviews)

After being hired to find an ex-con's former girlfriend, Philip Marlowe is drawn into a deeply complex web of mystery and deceit.

18.
Killer's Kiss
67 min | 1955 |
6.6 (21716 votes)
|
7.16 (111 reviews)

Ready to catch a train to his hometown, a washed-up boxer tells us about the strange and twisty events that happened to him the past couple of days.

19.
Night and the City
96 min | 1950 |
7.9 (12293 votes)
|
8.44 (81 reviews)

A small-time grifter and nightclub tout takes advantage of some fortuitous circumstances and tries to become a big-time player as a wrestling promoter.

20.
The Maltese Falcon
100 min | 1941 |
8.0 (150794 votes)
|
8.51 (306 reviews)

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

21.
The Big Heat
89 min | 1953 |
8.0 (24302 votes)
|
8.51 (147 reviews)

Tough cop Dave Bannion takes on a politically powerful crime syndicate.

22.
D.O.A.
77 min | 1949 |
7.3 (10837 votes)
|
7.8 (135 reviews)

Frank Bigelow, told he's been poisoned and has only a few days to live, tries to find out who killed him and why.

23.
All the King's Men
110 min | 1949 |
7.5 (13578 votes)
|
7.99 (74 reviews)

The rise and fall of a corrupt politician, who makes his friends richer and retains power by dint of a populist appeal.

24.
The Third Man
93 min | 1949 |
8.1 (161636 votes)
|
8.58 (421 reviews)

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

25.
Brute Force
98 min | 1947 |
7.6 (8846 votes)
|
8.05 (70 reviews)

At a tough penitentiary, prisoner Joe Collins plans to rebel against Captain Munsey, the power-mad chief guard.

26.
Gun Crazy
87 min | 1950 |
7.6 (12149 votes)
|
8.04 (104 reviews)

Two disturbed young people release their fascination with guns through a crime spree.

27.
Niagara
92 min | 1953 |
7.0 (15328 votes)
|
7.42 (113 reviews)

As two couples are visiting Niagara Falls, tensions between one wife and her husband reach the level of murder.

28.
The Desperate Hours
112 min | 1955 |
7.5 (8980 votes)
|
7.91 (60 reviews)

Three escaped convicts move in on and terrorize a suburban household.

29.
Stage Fright
110 min | 1950 |
7.1 (12724 votes)
|
7.5 (105 reviews)

A struggling actress tries to help a friend prove his innocence when he's accused of murdering the husband of a high society entertainer.

30.
Witness for the Prosecution
116 min | 1957 |
8.4 (112177 votes)
|
8.79 (249 reviews)

A veteran British barrister must defend his client in a murder trial that has surprise after surprise.

31.
The Petrified Forest
82 min | 1936 |
7.5 (12510 votes)
|
7.89 (102 reviews)

A waitress, a hobo and a bank robber get mixed up at a lonely diner in the desert.

32.
Stray Dog
122 min | 1949 |
7.9 (15183 votes)
|
8.28 (71 reviews)

During a sweltering summer, a rookie homicide detective tries to track down his stolen Colt pistol.

33.
Blackmail
85 min | 1929 |
7.0 (9376 votes)
|
7.36 (85 reviews)

After killing a man in self-defense, a young woman is blackmailed by a witness to the killing.

34.
Pickup on South Street
80 min | 1953 |
7.7 (13097 votes)
|
8.03 (102 reviews)

A pickpocket unwittingly lifts a message destined for enemy agents and becomes a target for a Communist spy ring.

35.
The Strange Love of Martha Ivers
116 min | 1946 |
7.4 (8277 votes)
|
7.72 (98 reviews)

A man is reunited with his childhood friend and her husband, who believe he knows the truth about the death of her rich aunt years earlier.

36.
I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang
92 min | 1932 |
8.2 (11979 votes)
|
8.5 (359 reviews)

Wrongly convicted James Allen serves in the intolerable conditions of a southern chain gang, which later comes back to haunt him.

37.
Notorious
102 min | 1946 |
8.0 (93711 votes)
|
8.29 (293 reviews)

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?

38.
The Roaring Twenties
106 min | 1939 |
8.0 (12794 votes)
|
8.27 (91 reviews)

Three men attempt to make a living in Prohibitionist America after returning home from fighting together in World War I.

39.
Call Northside 777
112 min | 1948 |
7.4 (8186 votes)
|
7.67 (90 reviews)

Chicago reporter P.J. McNeal re-opens a decade-old murder case.

40.
Fury
92 min | 1936 |
7.9 (11488 votes)
|
8.16 (68 reviews)

When a wrongly accused prisoner barely survives a lynch mob attack and is presumed dead, he vindictively decides to fake his death and frame the mob for his supposed murder.

41.
Shadow of a Doubt
108 min | 1943 |
7.8 (60760 votes)
|
8.06 (228 reviews)

A young girl, overjoyed when her favorite uncle comes to visit the family, slowly begins to suspect that he is in fact the "Merry Widow" killer sought by the authorities.

42.
The Lady Vanishes
96 min | 1938 |
7.8 (48520 votes)
|
8.05 (194 reviews)

While travelling in continental Europe, a rich young playgirl realizes that an elderly lady seems to have disappeared from the train.

43.
The Big Sleep
114 min | 1946 |
7.9 (79771 votes)
|
8.13 (235 reviews)

Private detective Philip Marlowe is hired by a wealthy family. Before the complex case is over, he's seen murder, blackmail, and what might be love.

44.
The Woman in the Window
107 min | 1944 |
7.7 (14608 votes)
|
7.88 (95 reviews)

A conservative middle aged professor engages in a relationship with a femme fatale, he's plunged into a nightmarish world of blackmail and murder.

45.
Gaslight
114 min | 1944 |
7.8 (25418 votes)
|
7.97 (132 reviews)

Years after her aunt was murdered in her home, a young woman moves back into the house with her new husband. However, he has a secret that he will do anything to protect, even if it means driving his wife insane.

46.
In a Lonely Place
94 min | 1950 |
8.0 (27742 votes)
|
8.17 (172 reviews)

A potentially violent screenwriter is a murder suspect until his lovely neighbor clears him. However, she soon starts to have her doubts.

47.
The Naked City
96 min | 1948 |
7.6 (12094 votes)
|
7.73 (81 reviews)

A step-by-step look at a murder investigation on the streets of New York.

48.
Laura
88 min | 1944 |
8.0 (43533 votes)
|
8.13 (242 reviews)

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

49.
Strangers on a Train
92 min | 1951 |
8.0 (125029 votes)
|
8.1 (274 reviews)

A psychopath forces a tennis star to comply with his theory that two strangers can get away with murder.

50.
Sorry, Wrong Number
89 min | 1948 |
7.4 (9533 votes)
|
7.5 (101 reviews)

While on the telephone, an invalid woman overhears what she thinks is a murder plot and attempts to prevent it.

Top 3 overrated film-noir movies

01.
Touch of Evil
95 min | 1958 |
8.0 (99709 votes)
|
7.39 (252 reviews)

A stark, perverse story of murder, kidnapping, and police corruption in a Mexican border town.

02.
The Night of the Hunter
92 min | 1955 |
8.0 (83518 votes)
|
7.42 (408 reviews)

A religious fanatic marries a gullible widow whose young children are reluctant to tell him where their real daddy hid the $10,000 he'd stolen in a robbery.

03.
The Killing
84 min | 1956 |
8.0 (83168 votes)
|
7.61 (317 reviews)

Crook Johnny Clay assembles a five-man team to plan and execute a daring racetrack robbery.