Top 49 underrated film-noir movies

01.
The Letter
95 min | 1940 |
7.7 (10358 votes)
|
8.58 (104 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.
Angels with Dirty Faces
97 min | 1938 |
7.9 (18360 votes)
|
8.68 (116 reviews)

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

03.
Double Indemnity
107 min | 1944 |
8.3 (128784 votes)
|
8.99 (312 reviews)

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

04.
The Asphalt Jungle
112 min | 1950 |
7.9 (21715 votes)
|
8.59 (116 reviews)

A major heist goes off as planned, until bad luck and double crosses cause everything to unravel.

05.
The Man with the Golden Arm
119 min | 1955 |
7.5 (8561 votes)
|
8.19 (68 reviews)

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

06.
Sweet Smell of Success
96 min | 1957 |
8.1 (24430 votes)
|
8.77 (113 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.

07.
Sunset Boulevard
110 min | 1950 |
8.4 (180133 votes)
|
9.06 (475 reviews)

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

08.
The Killers
103 min | 1946 |
7.8 (17007 votes)
|
8.44 (101 reviews)

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

09.
The Lost Weekend
101 min | 1945 |
8.0 (30471 votes)
|
8.63 (132 reviews)

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

10.
Ace in the Hole
111 min | 1951 |
8.2 (24463 votes)
|
8.82 (138 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 re-jump start his career, but the situation quickly escalates into an out-of-control circus.

11.
Out of the Past
97 min | 1947 |
8.0 (29100 votes)
|
8.58 (191 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.

12.
Murder, My Sweet
90 min | 1944 |
7.6 (10852 votes)
|
8.16 (89 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.

13.
The Petrified Forest
82 min | 1936 |
7.6 (11266 votes)
|
8.12 (86 reviews)

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

14.
The Third Man
93 min | 1949 |
8.2 (145238 votes)
|
8.71 (369 reviews)

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

15.
D.O.A.
77 min | 1949 |
7.3 (9744 votes)
|
7.8 (109 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.

16.
The Wrong Man
105 min | 1956 |
7.5 (22970 votes)
|
7.99 (123 reviews)

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

17.
The Big Heat
89 min | 1953 |
8.0 (20675 votes)
|
8.49 (127 reviews)

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

18.
Killer's Kiss
67 min | 1955 |
6.7 (19093 votes)
|
7.18 (92 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.
All the King's Men
110 min | 1949 |
7.5 (11969 votes)
|
7.97 (66 reviews)

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

20.
Night and the City
96 min | 1950 |
8.0 (10562 votes)
|
8.46 (73 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.

21.
I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang
92 min | 1932 |
8.1 (10552 votes)
|
8.46 (311 reviews)

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

22.
Gun Crazy
87 min | 1950 |
7.7 (10128 votes)
|
8.04 (93 reviews)

A well meaning crack shot husband is pressured by his beautiful marksman wife to go on an interstate robbery spree, where he finds out just how depraved and deadly she really is.

23.
Stage Fright
110 min | 1950 |
7.1 (11368 votes)
|
7.44 (91 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.

24.
Notorious
102 min | 1946 |
8.0 (85161 votes)
|
8.31 (257 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?

25.
Fury
92 min | 1936 |
7.9 (10268 votes)
|
8.2 (54 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.

26.
Niagara
92 min | 1953 |
7.1 (13334 votes)
|
7.4 (101 reviews)

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

27.
Stray Dog
122 min | 1949 |
7.9 (13265 votes)
|
8.16 (61 reviews)

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

28.
Strangers on a Train
92 min | 1951 |
8.0 (114322 votes)
|
8.24 (238 reviews)

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

29.
The Maltese Falcon
100 min | 1941 |
8.1 (140542 votes)
|
8.28 (261 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.

30.
Gaslight
114 min | 1944 |
7.8 (21027 votes)
|
7.98 (110 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.

31.
In a Lonely Place
94 min | 1950 |
8.0 (22434 votes)
|
8.17 (148 reviews)

A potentially violent screenwriter is a murder suspect until his lovely neighbor clears him. But she begins to have doubts.

32.
Pickup on South Street
80 min | 1953 |
7.8 (11186 votes)
|
7.97 (89 reviews)

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

33.
Laura
88 min | 1944 |
8.0 (38461 votes)
|
8.15 (208 reviews)

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

34.
The Stranger
95 min | 1946 |
7.4 (19163 votes)
|
7.54 (164 reviews)

An investigator from the War Crimes Commission travels to Connecticut to find an infamous Nazi.

35.
Sorry, Wrong Number
89 min | 1948 |
7.5 (8713 votes)
|
7.64 (85 reviews)

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

36.
The Naked City
96 min | 1948 |
7.6 (10787 votes)
|
7.73 (73 reviews)

Two New York City detectives investigate the death of an attractive young woman. The apparent suicide turns out to be murder.

37.
The Big Sleep
114 min | 1946 |
8.0 (73629 votes)
|
8.12 (218 reviews)

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

38.
Gilda
110 min | 1946 |
7.7 (24918 votes)
|
7.82 (142 reviews)

A small-time gambler hired to work in a Buenos Aires casino learns that his ex-lover is married to his employer.

39.
The Woman in the Window
107 min | 1944 |
7.7 (12063 votes)
|
7.77 (77 reviews)

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.

40.
Detour
68 min | 1945 |
7.4 (12708 votes)
|
7.45 (140 reviews)

Chance events trap hitch-hiker Al Roberts in a tightening net of film noir trouble.

41.
Mildred Pierce
111 min | 1945 |
8.0 (20283 votes)
|
8.05 (270 reviews)

A hard-working mother inches towards disaster as she divorces her husband and starts a successful restaurant business to support her spoiled daughter.

42.
Spellbound
111 min | 1945 |
7.6 (39368 votes)
|
7.51 (134 reviews)

A psychiatrist protects the identity of an amnesia patient accused of murder while attempting to recover his memory.

43.
Kiss Me Deadly
106 min | 1955 |
7.6 (16752 votes)
|
7.49 (152 reviews)

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

44.
The Postman Always Rings Twice
113 min | 1946 |
7.5 (16796 votes)
|
7.38 (121 reviews)

A married woman and a drifter fall in love, then plot to murder her husband.

45.
The Lady from Shanghai
81 min | 1947 |
7.7 (23562 votes)
|
7.58 (141 reviews)

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

46.
Scarlet Street
102 min | 1945 |
7.9 (12563 votes)
|
7.77 (115 reviews)

When a man in mid-life crisis befriends a young woman, her venal fiancé persuades her to con him out of the fortune they mistakenly assume he possesses.

47.
Leave Her to Heaven
110 min | 1945 |
7.7 (9688 votes)
|
7.56 (105 reviews)

A writer falls in love with a young socialite and they're soon married. But her obsessive love for him threatens to be the undoing of them both, and everyone else around them.

48.
Dark Passage
106 min | 1947 |
7.6 (15895 votes)
|
7.41 (124 reviews)

A man convicted of murdering his wife escapes from prison and works with a woman to try and prove his innocence.

49.
Dial M for Murder
105 min | 1954 |
8.2 (140648 votes)
|
7.93 (258 reviews)

A tennis player frames his unfaithful wife for first-degree murder after she inadvertently hinders his plan to kill her.

Top 3 overrated film-noir movies

01.
Touch of Evil
95 min | 1958 |
8.0 (92836 votes)
|
6.98 (216 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 (75301 votes)
|
7.37 (365 reviews)

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

03.
The Killing
84 min | 1956 |
8.0 (73603 votes)
|
7.63 (294 reviews)

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