The 10 best gangster movies of all time, ranked

The gangster genre is a favorite of Hollywood. Directors like Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, and Brian de Palma have made substantial and now-iconic contributions to the genre’s history, but many other directors have delivered unforgettable entries into the violent and restless world of gangsters.

The best gangster movies of all time reveal a treasure trove of memorable characters, unforgettable plot lines, dialogues, and violent set-pieces that are all grounded in a reality that feels so far away but is often just below the surface. Hats and pinstripe suits, cities and firearms.

Cinema has a habit of making gangsters look cool. It seems the big screens just can’t get enough of the bad guys, and gathering the best gangster movies of all time have not been an easy feat. But it’s not just the romantic tough-talk, the bloody action and the glitzy allure of high-flying mobsters that gets us.

The gangster genre shows us how criminal networks operate with their own fiercely moral codes, for the possibility people have to build up their legacy from the ground up and for always walking the fine line between the need to resort to violence and protect their codes of honor and family, in their quest to become rich, powerful and remembered. All the while juggling the needs of their real families with that of their other mob “family”.

00:00 The 10 best gangster movies of all time, ranked
00:28 Scarface (1983)
01:17 Little Caesar (1931)
02:05 The Public Enemy (1931)
02:48 Pulp Fiction (1994)
03:38 Scarface (1932)
04:25 Bonnie and Clyde (1967)
05:09 White Heat (1949)
05:55 The Godfather Part II (1974)
06:40 Goodfellas (1990)
07:27 The Godfather (1972)

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