10 Best Noir Films

Friday, January 28 by Stephen Pomposello

If you're looking to find the 10 best noir films, then you may find the following ten noir classics to suit your liking. Noir has always been quite an admirable film genre as well as an extremely artful one. It has been frequently indulged by many great directors from Alfred Hitchcock to Stanley Kubrick and many more. From good old self-contained detective stories to tales of corruption, deceit, and betrayal, these noir films have it all and so much more. Know the masterful film genre that is noir.

  1. "Sunset Boulevard." This 1950's noir film classic is centered around a hack Hollywood screenwriter who puts together a screenplay for a former movie star of old silent films who has since become a has-been. This features many elements of noir in that a man uses a woman and she does the same to him.
  2. "The Third Man." This classic noir film follows the character of an American pulp writer named Holly Martins who is invited by his good friend to come out to Post World War II Vienna to work with him, only to find out that he was recently killed in a car accident as soon as he arrives there.
  3. "Touch of Evil." Based on the novel "Badge of Evil" by Whit Masterson, "Touch of Evil" is classic American crime thriller and among one of the best noir films ever made. This is a black and white masterpiece that depicts the loss of humanity with the utmost craft and perfection.
  4. "Double Indemnity." Based on the James M. Cain novel of the same name, this noir film follows an insurance representative who soon finds himself getting talked into one big insurance fraud that is connected to a murder. An insurance investigator begins to dig deeper into the case. 
  5. "The Killing." Armed with a killer script, "The Killing" is an excellent noir film about a pack of thieves who plot and execute an ambitious robbery of a racetrack. Despite performing rather poorly at the box office upon its initial release, "The Killing" is still a masterful noir effort from director Stanley Kubrick.
  6. "Notorious." Before the rapper bio-pic of the late 2000's, there was the Alfred Hitchcock-directed noir film "Notorious" which centers around an ordinary woman who finds herself doing a spy's dirty work by keeping an eye on some Nazis in South America.
  7. "The Maltese Falcon." This set-glued and talky American noir film is about a private detective who is investigating a case that is tied to a drop dead gorgeous woman full of lies, a group of eccentric bad guys, and a plot to steal a very expensive statuette. This is among the best detective stories.
  8. "Strangers on a Train." Yet another classic American noir film that is directed by the noir mastermind himself, Alfred Hitchcock. Based on the novel of the same name by Patricia Highsmith, "Strangers on a Train" depicts a psycho and a pro tennis player acting out on a theory of murder in which they conjure up.
  9. "Out of the Past." Starring Jane Greer, Robert Mitchum, and Kirk Douglas, "Out of the Past" is another fine piece of noir film. "Out of the Past" features a private eye detective who makes an attempt to escape his past which is filled with much corruption and danger, only to have it all catch up to him.
  10. "The Night of the Hunter." Directed by Charles Laughton, this noir film has since been labelled as culturally and historically significant by the the U.S. Library of Congress. "The Night of the Hunter" is about an overly religious man who marries a widow whose children know of a secretly stashed $10,000 that was stolen by their real father.
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