About us

We have a new beta site for Reel Fives, please visit us there and not here. Just go to www.reelfives.com. Thanks!

Interested in knowing what we are about? Please see our introduction
Curious about our pre-launch rankings and what we consider 'top movies'? Please see our post here.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Best Gangster Movies Ranked - Based on 140 Expert Lists

Godfather (1972), ranked first as best gangster movie of all time, making top five in 77% of top expert lists
Welcome to our Reel Fives pre-launch movie rankings for best gangster movies of all time. Our Reel Fives team has found 140 published ranked lists of the top gangster movies published online and ended up with the 60 all-time greatest gangster movies. For each ranked list of greatest movies for the gangster movie genre, we have taken the top five ranked films. The movie rankings on top gangster movies are included at the bottom of this post and include rankings of the best movies in the gangster film genre created by movie experts as well as rankings from polling sites.

Gangster movies mix elements from thrillers and suspense films through great dialogue, one-liners, and high stakes, often deadly, confrontations. Add in a cigar, a tux, and go back a few decades, and a great gangster movie has been born. Francis Ford Coppola’s The Godfather (1972), the number one ranked gangster movie, balances all of these elements to near perfection. The movie does not rely on action to engage audiences, certainly not the Quentin Tarantino kind where everyone kills everyone in Mexican stand-offs. Instead, The Godfather (1972) focused on dialogue, which appealed to critics and audiences alike. The Godfather (1972) won three Oscars: for best picture, actor (Marlon Brando), and screenplay adaption. Gangster films for the most part do not focus on the actual killing of people but rather on the intricate lattice that is the hierarchy of the mob and the dynamics of its internal power struggles. Martin Scorsese’s Goodfellas (1990) follows the mafia gang members as they rise in the mob hierarchy.

The prominence of the mafia of past times is reflected in this genre as most gangster movies take place in the past and in urban backdrops where the mob ruled (although there are notable exceptions such as The Departed (2006)). Another recurring theme in gangster film is the game of cat and mouse. The police or FBI attempt to catch and/or shutdown a gang in the gangster film (i.e., The Departed (2006) and The Untouchables (1983)). Like romantic comedies, gangster films have their classic actors. Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, and Al Pacino have starred in several of the most successful and critically acclaimed gangster movies. Gangster films also have similar directors. For example, Francis Ford Coppola has directed four gangster films, including all three Godfather (1972, 1974, and 1990) movies. Martin Scorsese has directed seven gangster films, including Goodfellas (1990), Casino (1995), The Departed (2006), and Gangs of New York (2002). Brian De Palma directed Scarface (1983) and The Untouchables (1986). These directors and actors work together to produce a great plot for a gangster film. Critics treat gangster movies favorably and the list’s top gangster films have won several Academy Awards. This is due in part to the great demand for dialogue and strong acting to engage audiences in gangster films. Film noir has influenced how gangster films flow. From the sharp black and white imagery on the screen to strong sexual themes, the influence of film noir is clear in the gangster genre. Chinatown (1974), ranked thirty-three on our list, is categorized in the film noir and gangster genres. While the gangster genre has a clear formula, the plots remain interesting to both critics and audiences.

The results of the rankings do not surprise us. The Godfather (1972) and The Godfather 2 (1974), ranked number one and three respectively, are considered two of the greatest gangster movies, if not the best written movies of all time. To see the films take the top rankings is expected, as both were critically acclaimed and won nine Oscars collectively. In fact, The Godfather 2 (1974) won six Oscars, more than the first one. Goodfellas (1990) and Scarface (1983), ranked two and four, were also expected to be in the top spots. All in all, we found the rankings to be expected, with the only surprise that earlier gangster movies do not rank higher. The White Heat (1949) is the only film made before 1970 that cracks the top 10 best gangster films, tying for tenth place. This could be due in part to the fact that most gangster films tend to take place in the past (i.e., The Godfather (1972) takes place in the 1940s). In this way, gangster movies developed out a fascination with the past and mob bosses such as Al Capone. The Untouchables (1987), tied at thirteen, actually follows an FBI agent attempting to arrest Al Capone. Newer gangster movies are starting to break the mold. The Departed (2006), ranked eighth, takes place in present day Boston and follows an officer trying to shut down an Irish gang. Most gangster movies tend to star homogenous casts, and we would like to see that change. For example, urban African-American movies did not get much attention, including Belly (1998), which is not listed, and Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999), which came relatively low on the list at thirty-eight. In this regard, we hope to see growth and updated stories in the gangster film genre. 
Top 60 Movies based on 141 published rankings
Percent of online top fives movies appear on shown
1 . The Godfather (1972): 77.3%
2 . Goodfellas (1990): 74.4%
3 . The Godfather 2 (1974): 62.4%
4 . Scarface (1983): 36.8%
5 . Once Upon a Time in America (1984): 20.5%
6 . Casino (1995): 19.8%
7 . Pulp Fiction (1994): 19.1%
8 . The Departed (2006): 16.3%
9 . Donnie Brasco (1997): 11.3%
10 . The Godfather 3 (1990): 10.6%
11 . White Heat (1949): 10.6%
12 . Public Enemies (2009): 9.92%
13 . The Untouchables (1987): 9.21%
14 . City of God (2002): 9.21%
15 . Bonnie And Clyde (1967): 8.51%
16 . Reservoir Dogs (1992): 7.80%
17 . Miller’s Crossing (1990): 5.67%
18 . Mou gaan dou Wai Keung Lau (2002): 5.67%
19 . Road to Perdition (2002): 4.25%
20 . Bronx Tale (1993): 4.25%
21 (tied). American Gangster (2007): 3.54%
21 (tied). On the Waterfront (1954): 3.54%
23 . Little Caesar (1931): 2.83%
24 . The Usual Suspects (1995): 2.83%
25 . Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1999): 2.83%
26 . Carlito's Way (1993): 2.83%
27 . Snatch (2001): 2.83%
28 . Angels with Dirty Faces (1936): 2.12%
29 . King of New York (1990): 2.12%
30 (tied). Bugsy (1991): 2.12%
30 (tied). Mean Streets (1973): 2.12%
30 (tied). Heat (1995): 2.12%
33 (tied). The Killing (1956): 1.41%
33 (tied). Married to the Mob (1988): 1.41%
35 . The Big Heat (1953): 1.41%
36 . Eastern Promises (2007): 1.41%
37 . China Town (1974): 1.41%
38 (tied). A Most Violent Year (2014): .709%
38 (tied). Killing Them Softly (2012): .709%
40 . Mafioso (1962): .709%
41 (tied). Boobdock Saints (1999): .709%
41 (tied). The Ladykillers (1995): .709%
41 (tied). The Iceman (2012): .709%
41 (tied). Drive (2011): .709%
41 (tied). Army In The Shadows (1969): .709%
41 (tied). The Killer (1989): .709%
47 (tied). Rififi (1955): .709%
47 (tied). Gangs of New York (2002): .709%
47 (tied). State of Grace (1990): .709%
47 (tied). Leon The Professional (1994): .709%
47 (tied). Gangster # 1 (2000): .709%
47 (tied). Last Man Standing (1996): .709%
47 (tied). Romanzo Criminale (2005): .709%
54 (tied). Boca  (2011): .709%
54 (tied). Brother (2009): .709%
54 (tied). Gran Torino (2008): .709%
54 (tied). Analyze This (1999): .709%
54 (tied). Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999): .709%
54 (tied). Showdown in Little Tokyo (1991): .709%
60 . Kay Largo (1948): 0%

Gangster Movie Ranking Sources
Games Radar List of top 30 (link)
Time Out List of top 50 (link)
Sky Movies List of top 40 (link)
AFI List of top 10 (link)
Paste Magazine List of top 25 (link)
Ask Men List of top 12 (link)
list Challenges List of top 50 (link)
Ranker List of top 80 (link)
AMC List of top 20 (link)
Screen Junkies List of top 10 (link)
List Verse List of top 20 (link)
Mirror List of top 10 (link)
The Script Lab List of top 10 (link)
Film Junk List of top 30 (link)
The Top Tens List of top 10 (link)
Flick Chart List of top 100 (link)
Reelz List of top 10 (link)
PJ Media List of top 8 (link)
The Gay UK List of top 10 (link)
Top Mens Magazine List of top 10 (link)
Rotten Tomatoes List of top 11 (link)
411mania (B.  Kristopowitz) List of top 5 (link)
411mania (C. Winfield) List of top 5 (link)
411mania (M. Weyer) List of top 5 (link)
Chron List of top 30 (link)
Info Please List of top 10 (link)
My Film Views List of top 10 (link)
Top Ten Diary List of top 15 (link)
Center for Creative Media List of top 10 (link)
Alternative Reel List of top 10 (link)
Carl Alves List of top 5 (link)
Movie Pilot List of top 580 (link)
Rate Your Music List of top 122 (link)
News One List of top 5 (link)
Film Site List of top 10 (link)
Movie Review Query Engine List of top 76 (link)
Taste of Cinema List of top 10 (link)
IMDb List of top 100 (link)
Alpha Male Traits List of top 25 (link)
Watch Mojo List of top 10 (link)
The Most 10 List of top 10 (link)
Heavy List of top 10 (link)
The Richest List of top 10 (link)
Letter Boxd List of top 62 (link)
CNN List of top 10 (link)
Frolic Hawaii List of top 5 (link)
Hub Pages List of top 10 (link)
Mubi List of top 160 (link)
California Literary Review List of top 100 (link)
Word and Film List of top 5 (link)
CNBC List of top 13 (link)
IGN List of top 25 (link)
Lists World List of top 5 (link)
Listology List of top 30 (link)
List Land List of top 10 (link)
First Showing List of top 4 (link)
Shark Ranks List of top 20 (link)
Movies Films Motion Pictures List of top 10 (link)
Film Gourmand List of top 12 (link)
Digital Dream Door List of top 100 (link)
Pelfind List of top 50 (link)
Mud Mosh List of top 5 (link)
Wrestling Classics List of top 95 (link)
CBC News List of top 13 (link)
Viral Camera List of top 25 (link)
Mr. RauRauR List of top 10 (link)
Sign Viral List of top 20 (link)
The Blog Gangater List of top 20 (link)
Aspect List of top 10 (link)
Sonic Youth List of top 10 (link)
Ebay List of top 10 (link)
Movies Men List of top 9 (link)
Solent Creatives List of top 5 (link)
Film Aware List of top 10 (link)
Rant Lifestyle List of top 10 (link)
Xinhuanet List of top 10 (link)
Louder Than War List of top 10 (link)
Pittsburgh Post Gazette List of top 10 (link)
High Infidelity Notes List of top 5 (link)
Decider List of top 10 (link)
To Watch Pile List of top 10 (link)
English dbw List of top 10 (link)
Metro Feeds List of top 10 (link)
Filmgurl List of top 10 (link)
List World List of top 5 (link)
The Telegraph List of top 20 (link)
Cheat Sheet List of top 5 (link)
What Culture List of top 10 (link)
Film School WTF List of top 100 (link)
All Womens Talk List of top 15 (link)
Mo Eat the Movies List of top 10 (link)
What Movie Should I Watch List of top 10 (link)
Listal List of top 50 (link)
About List of top 7 (link)
Top 10 Filme List of top 10 (link)
Alle Top10 lijstjes List of top 10 (link)
Topito List of top 10 (link)
IMDb  List of top 30 (link)
Enki Village List of top 10 (link)
Popcorn Film List of top 5 (link)
Agents of Geek List of top 5 (link)
Indigo Productions List of top 10 (link)
Godzi List List of top 5 (link)
Boston List of top 5 (link)
Soda Head List of top 5 (link)
List Dose List of top 10 (link)
Wiki Best List of top 9 (link)
Azcentral List of top 10 (link)
Factet List of top 10 (link)
Now You Heard List of top 10 (link)
My Five Best List of top 5 (link)
Youtube List of top 20 (link)
Youtube List of top 5 (link)
Youtube List of top 5 (link)
Youtube List of top 10 (link)
Youtube List of top 10 (link)
Aol Real Estate List of top 5 (link)
CATUR List of top 10 (link)
Nerdisr List of top 10 (link)
Legal Movie Shop List of top 10 (link)
How-to cast List of top 10 (link)
Daily Motion List of top 10 (link)
The List App List of top 5 (link)
Ebay List of top 10 (link)
Quora List of top 20 (link)
Zazen Life List of top 6 (link)
Master in Criminal Justice List of top 100 (link)
Baklol List of top 10 (link)
Wire Club List of top 10 (link)
List of the Best List of top 26 (link)
Trailer Snack List of top 10 (link)
Rajnikant VS CID Jokes List of top 10 (link)
Tiny Jump List of top 10 (link)
Bold List List of top 5 (link)
Comedy Spot Nation List of top 10 (link)
Lowell Sun List of top 5 (link)
Duke Today List of top 5 (link)
Pop Culture Spin List of top 5 (link)
Blog Talk Radio List of top 5 (link)
CV Rick List of top 10 (link)
Gbooza List of top 30 (link)

Identifying the top movies is our mission.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Spy Movie Rankings - Best Films Based on 50 Rankings

Number one ranked spy film
Scene from Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest (1959), top ranked spy movie
Welcome to our Reel Fives pre-launch movie rankings for the best spy movies of all time. Our Reel Fives team has found over 50 published ranked lists of the best spy movies published online. Our aggregated rankings contain the top 74 spy movies. For each ranked list of top movies for the spy movie genre we have taken the top five ranked spy films. The rankings on top spy movies are included at the bottom of this post and include rankings created by movie experts as well as rankings from polling sites, such as ranker.com.

Spy movies take the viewer on a journey through a mission. Whether the mission succeeds or fails becomes the plot. Suspense with a dose of comedy are two prominent elements of a great spy movie. Consider Burn After Reading (2008), two average lives become entangled with CIA spies leading the viewer on a hilarious journey of blackmail. Some spy movies, such as the James Bond and Bourne films, are more serious and less relatable. Those films offer exhilaration and take the viewer across the globe to beat the villain. Not all spy movies are alike, but what they all share is a desire to thrill the viewers—and the good ones do just that through suspense and/or humor.

The James Bond films define the spy movie genre and dominate our list because they tell an extraordinary story and exhilarate the audience. Each era has its own James Bond. From Sean Connery to Daniel Craig, James Bond has always managed to make saving the world attractive. James Bond always has a suit, gun, and a martini on hand along with a beautiful woman by his side. Bond films have a classic formula that has been tweaked to perfection and in this way, Bond could also be a sub-genre of the spy movie genre. The stories build on each other, yet they can also stand alone. We expect James Bond to continue to have a strong presence in the spy movie genre for years to come.

The rankings were fair and paid homage to the classics and there were no real surprises, with the number one being North by Northwest (1959). The newer films that made the list, such as The Bourne Ultimatum (2007) and The Bourne Identity (2002), did not drift too far from the classics in terms of the techniques in the films. In most of the films, there is conflict, followed by a plan that almost works, then another smaller conflict, and concludes with hero winning. We would like to see how Spectre (2015) ranks, as it gives women a more prominent role. Most spy films are filled with strong male spies, but with the diversification of Hollywood, will spy movies also become more diverse and if so, how will they stack up? The answers to these questions will impact the future rankings of spy movies.  


Top 74 Movies based on 52 published rankings
Percent of online top fives movie included in shown
1 . North by Northwest (1959): 34.6%
2 . Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011): 30.7%
3 . The Bourne Ultimatum (2007): 26.9%
4 . The Bourne Identity (2002): 25%
5 . The Spy Who came in from the Cold (1965): 21.1%
6 (tied). Three Days of The Condor (1975): 19.2%
6 (tied). Notorious (1946): 19.2%
8 . Casino Royale (2006): 17.3%
9 (tied). The Ipcress File (1965): 15.3%
9 (tied). From Russia with Love (1963): 15.3%
11 (tied). Goldfinger (1964): 13.4%
11 (tied). The 39 Steps (1935): 13.4%
11 (tied). Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (2011): 13.4%
11 (tied). Mission: Impossible (1996): 13.4%
15 . Argo (2012): 11.5%
16 (tied). Munich (2005): 9.61%
16 (tied). The Lives of Others (2006): 9.61%
16 (tied). The Bourne Supremacy (2004): 9.61%
16 (tied). The Manchurian Candidate (1962): 9.61%
20 (tied). The Third Man (1949): 7.69%
20 (tied). Spy Game (2001): 7.69%
20 (tied). True Lies (1994): 7.69%
20 (tied). Dr. No (1962): 7.69%
20 (tied). No Way Out  (1987): 7.69%
25 (tied). Body of Lies (2008): 5.76%
25 (tied). Zero Dark Thirty (2012): 5.76%
25 (tied). Skyfall (2012): 5.76%
25 (tied). The Spy who Loved me (1977): 5.76%
25 (tied). Kingsman: The Secret Service (2014): 5.76%
30 (tied). Patriot Games (1992): 3.84%
30 (tied). Spies Like Us (1985): 3.84%
30 (tied). Knight and Day (2010): 3.84%
30 (tied). Golden Eye (1995): 3.84%
30 (tied). The Lady Vanishes (1938): 3.84%
30 (tied). Eye of The Needle (1978): 3.84%
30 (tied). Ronin (1998): 3.84%
30 (tied). Mr. and Mrs. Smith (2005): 3.84%
30 (tied). The Good Shepherd (2006): 3.84%
30 (tied). Confessions of a dangerous mind (2002): 3.84%
40 (tied). The Quiller Memorandum (1966): 1.92%
40 (tied). Taken (2009): 1.92%
40 (tied). Die Another Day (2002): 1.92%
40 (tied). Burn After Reading (2008): 1.92%
40 (tied). Postmortem (1990): 1.92%
40 (tied). The Fourth Protocol (1987): 1.92%
40 (tied). Present Danger (1994): 1.92%
40 (tied). Enemy of the State (1998): 1.92%
40 (tied). Colonel Redl (1985): 1.92%
40 (tied). Enigma (2001): 1.92%
40 (tied). Where Eagles Dare (1968): 1.92%
40 (tied). Funeral in Berlin (1966): 1.92%
40 (tied). The Bourne Legacy (2012): 1.92%
40 (tied). 13 Rue Madeleine (1947): 1.92%
40 (tied). Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997): 1.92%
40 (tied). Five Graves to Cairo (1943): 1.92%
40 (tied). Quantam of Solace (2008): 1.92%
40 (tied). The Day of The Jackal (1973): 1.92%
40 (tied). Our Man in Havana (1959): 1.92%
40 (tied). Mask of Dimitros (1944): 1.92%
40 (tied). Spy Kids (2001): 1.92%
40 (tied). Green Zone (2010): 1.92%
40 (tied). Charlie Wilson's War (2007): 1.92%
40 (tied). Contraband (1940): 1.92%
40 (tied). The Man who knew too much (1934): 1.92%
40 (tied). Spies (1928): 1.92%
40 (tied). Army of Shadows (2006): 1.92%
40 (tied). Fair Game (2010): 1.92%
40 (tied). Rogue Male (1939): 1.92%
40 (tied). You only Live Twice (1967): 1.92%
40 (tied). Red (2010): 1.92%
40 (tied). Marathon Man (1976): 1.92%
40 (tied). The Debt (2010): 1.92%
40 (tied). Sneakers (1992): 1.92%
74 . The Tailor of Panama (2001): 0%

Online Spy Movie Ranking Sources
Allerton Ave List of top 7 (link)
allmovie List of top 268 (link)
AMC List of top 10 (link)
AMC List of top 10 (link)
az central List of top 10 (link)
before the bombs fall List of top 10 (link)
Bloody Murder List of top 20 (link)
COED List of top 7 (link)
Culture Fly List of top 10 (link)
Daily Mail List of top 10 (link)
Daily News List of top 10 (link)
Droids youre looking for List of top 7 (link)
Entertainment Monthly List of top 9 (link)
Esquire List of top 10 (link)
Fandango List of top 10 (link)
film racket List of top 10 (link)
film school wtf List of top 70 (link)
Flick Chart List of top 50 (link)
Flick Chart List of top 604 (link)
i make news List of top 5 (link)
imdb List of top 100 (link)
imdb List of top 30 (link)
io9 List of top 10 (link)
Letterboxd List of top 100 (link)
Listal List of top 17 (link)
Made Man List of top 10 (link)
Movie Mail List of top 10 (link)
Movies Review 101 List of top 5 (link)
next movie List of top 5 (link)
No perfect Movie List of top 10 (link)
omg story List of top 5 (link)
paperblog List of top 5 (link)
Porcupine Sundae List of top 5 (link)
PR Buzz List of top 10 (link)
Radass List of top 27 (link)
Ranker List of top 125 (link)
Rankopedia List of top 25 (link)
Reelz List of top 10 (link)
Screen Junkies List of top 10 (link)
Screen Picks List of top 125 (link)
Share Ranks List of top 23 (link)
Showbiz Junkies List of top 10 (link)
Spy Maniac List of top 10 (link)
Taste Of Cinema List of top 25 (link)
The Film Stage List of top 10 (link)
The Hollywood Reporter List of top 5 (link)
The xx committee List of top 5 (link)
thomasrye List of top 10 (link)
Top10HQ List of top 10 (link)
Watch Mojo List of top 10 (link)
Youtube List of top 10 (link)
Youtube List of top 10 (link)

Identifying the top movies is our mission.