Neo-noir movies, which sprang from the 1940s and 1950s film noir trend, straddle the lines between classic noir features and thematically related motifs in science fiction, psychological suspense, horror, and crime. Since the 1970s, there have been consistently great neo-noir films released, each one stylish and distinctive in its own particular manner. The ten Best Neo-Noir Movies of all time are being chosen by thousands of amateur investigators at Ranker.
1. Chinatown (1974)
Director- Roman Polanski
Jake Gittes, a brilliant private eye and expert in adultery cases in 1937 Los Angeles, is profoundly cynical but also sympathetic. The chief engineer for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Hollis Mulwray, is suddenly confronted by a mysterious blonde who enters his office convinced that her husband is having an affair. And then all of a sudden, Gittes is involved in a complicated murder and deception case. Because Gittes poked his nose into a complex and hazardous plot, dishonest government officials and homicidal henchmen are hunting him. As if that weren’t enough, Jake is now beginning to think that he’s been duped. But in this tricky situation, practically everyone is hiding something. It has been in the list of Best Neo-Noir Movies, since the start according to many websites.
2. Blade Runner (1982)
Director- Ridley Scott
Rick Deckard, a grizzled former Blade Runner, is called out of retirement after four rogue Nexus-6 replicants hijack a spaceship and visit Earth illegally in search of their creator, Dr. Eldon Tyrell, amid a dystopian Los Angeles of towering buildings in 2019. Deckard, a ruthless bounty hunter, searches every inch of the futuristic, neon-lit metropolis in an effort to find the hazardous androids and “retire” them as their desire to find him grows. However, Rick is battling contradictory feelings more and more of the time.
3. Fargo (1996)
Director- Coen Brothers
For a $1 million ransom, Jerry employs two men to kidnap his wife in order to convince his wealthy father-in-law to step up. Following the payment of the ransom, Jerry will receive the remaining $40,000 from the kidnappers. The plan is for that to happen, but it doesn’t actually work out that way. When two unarmed citizens and a police officer are killed, blood is spilled. The Chief who is looking into the murders is Marge Gunderson. Jerry becomes embroiled in more serious issues, such as financial difficulties and threats from the kidnappers, while Marge is doing her investigation.
4. Blood Simple (1984)
Director- Ethan Coen
An unlikable Texas bar owner named Julian Marty engages dubious private investigator Loren Visser, who is able to get the evidence Marty needs—in this case, photographic proof—that his wife, Abby, and one of his bartenders, Ray, are having an affair. Ray and Abby are able to make plans for their future apart from Marty as they become aware that he is aware of them, while also being honest with him about the situation. In response, Marty chooses to appoint Visser once more to murder Abby and Ray and then dispose of their remains so that they won’t be discovered.
The open affair and the contract violation cause some self-serving behaviour from the four parties, which is complicated by some incorrect perceptions about what transpired. An innocent observer, another of the Marty’s bartenders named Meurice, may unintentionally contribute to the situation.
5. Memento (2000)
Director- Christopher Nolan
Memento is a challenging, mind-bending adventure that is a memory inside a memory. Leonard has sworn to exact revenge for the killing of his wife. Due to a condition he developed, short term memory loss, he is unable to remember anything that occurs on a daily basis, so he must write himself numerous notes that, even after he goes to sleep, are still meaningless. As he searches for the person who killed his wife, the movie moves back in time to disclose each piece of the puzzle, leaving the audience feeling just as perplexed as he is. The story closely resembles a telephone conversation Pearce has in which he discusses Sammy Jankis, a former client he thought shared the same illness.
6. The Usual Suspects (1995)
Director- Bryan Singer
Dave Kujan, a U.S. Customs agent, questions Roger “Verbal” Kint following the deaths of several people and the burning of a cargo ship. Verbal tells them what transpired after initially being reticent to do so, beginning with the time he met four men—all criminals—who were being held in a holding cell together for a short period of time. They team up and successfully seize a cargo of jewels before moving to Los Angeles to hide out. An attorney named Kobayashi who is Keyser Söze’s representative and is asking them to complete a task for him contacts them there. Attack on cargo ship is the end result. Because Verbal declines to testify, he is released from custody. Kujan does not become aware of the truth until after the fact.
7. Drive (2011)
Director- Nicolas Winding Refn
The unnamed, phlegmatic driver, who is completely defined by his line of work, works as a mechanic and a daring stuntman for fast-moving action movies by day, and at night, he becomes a skilled getaway driver for criminals. But things quickly get worse when a chance encounter with Irene, the Driver’s frightened neighbour and mother of a small son, sparks an impulsive attraction. A reluctant job with her ex-con husband ends up in a gory mess. The Driver now needs to save not just himself but also the helpless Irene and her child while on the run, bloodied, and carrying a bag filled with the Mafia’s money. Years of practise have allowed the stoic Driver to execute his precise escapes with absolute accuracy.
8. Mulholland Drive (2001)
Director- David Lynch
After a vehicle accident, a woman with black hair is left with amnesia. She stumbles about Los Angeles’s streets in a haze before seeking solace in an apartment. Betty, a nice Midwestern blonde who has moved to the City of Angels in search of acting glory, finds her there. The two work together to figure out Rita’s true identity. The setting for the movie is a dreamlike Los Angeles without smog or traffic congestion.
9. Dark City (1998)
Director- Alex Proyas
A dead prostitute is in the room when John Murdoch, a man, wakes up in the bathroom of his hotel room with no memory—not even of his own name. He gets a call from Doctor Schreber warning him that some individuals are coming for him and that he needs to leave right away. He runs away, making himself the main suspect in a string of murders of prostitutes. When Murdoch’s wife, Emma, reports him missing, Inspector Frank Bumstead is on the investigation and is interested. The pursuit of Murdoch by some odd individuals with unique abilities is evident in the interim.
10. Sin City (2005)
Director(s)- Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez
In this collection of four neo-noir stories, an enigmatic salesman tells the heartbreaking narrative of codependency while a muscular vigilante rips through the underworld of crime in search of his lost love. A seasoned officer stops a child killer in his tracks in another area of the city, and Dwight helps an ex-prostitute escape her former pimp.