Dear Crime Fans,
It may not have the same rabid following as Horror, Sci-Fi and Animation, but the crime genre does have one thing going for it - some of the best movies ever made.
In doing this Greatest Movies A-Z series with WatchMojo, it would have been a crime to skip the genre responsible for so much incredible and important cinema. Some movies ended up getting whacked we would have never expected, but you can’t go against the family - or the rules of the alphabet. Enjoy.
Again, we gave ourselves some guidelines:
- One film per letter
- Articles don’t count (the, an, a, etc.)
- Final list should encapsulate the genre
The last rule dictated a lot of our hardest decisions. We also, as always, strived for balance when it came down to a pissing contest over what film was the “best”.
So here’s some take-aways from our decision-making process. If your favorite movie isn’t in our final video, there’s a very good chance it’s a decision, and not an omission.
LESSONS FROM CRIME A-Z
TOP DECADE: 1990s
Your gut probably tells you it will be the 70s. Based on this list, it’s almost the 50s. But in the end the 90s proved the most prolific decade for greatest crime movies. And it’s not like they claimed easy letters. We dare you to disagree with any of those 90s spots.
HARDEST LETTER: T
Taxi Driver is not on this list. Neither is Touch of Evil. Nor Traffic. Scorsese got M instead (taking it away from The Maltese Falcon, Memento, and even Fritz Lang’s M) since he really couldn’t expect to take G - even if Goodfellas is hellagood. It’s a deal with the devil, but we played by eye-for-an-eye rules (or, in this case, T-for-a-G)
CHEATED OUT: The Departed
We went with Infernal Affairs, the Hong Kong movie it’s based on, instead. Yes it helped us make the list less American-centric, but it’s also pretty defensible if you’ve seen that original trilogy. We kind of double-screwed Scorsese though, since it meant we also didn’t give him The Irishman. That’s the real I-for-an-I!
BEST BATTLE: The Night Hunter vs No Country for Old Men
Just brutal, we know. We might as well have flipped a coin. But Anton Chigurh bit the dust. What’s the most you ever lost on a coin toss?
SPECIAL CONSIDERATION: Uncut Gems
We were thrilled that Queen and Slim not only gave us a 2019 movie, but a good one. U was not as straightforward. The 90s were already very well represented, but we easily could have gone with The Usual Suspects. Or even The Untouchables. But in the end, we went with the greatest trick Adam Sandler ever pulled - convincing us he deserves to exist (as a serious actor).
Think your list would be better? More balanced? Less heart-breaking? Let us know.
Dear Cast & Crew