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After seven fabulous years with you all, we are sorry to let you know that we're going to be retiring the Flixster Community site on September 30, 2014. Please note that you can still access your ratings, reviews, and quizzes on Flixster and Rotten Tomatoes using your same login. We have had so much fun building this community with you.

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Best Detective Movies

  • Sherlock Holmes

    Sherlock Holmes (PG-13, 2009)

    Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams, Mark Strong (II), Eddie Marsan
    The mysterious action-adventure, "Sherlock Holmes" staged by the renowned filmmaker Guy Ritchie for ... read moreWarner Bros. Pictures and Village Roadshow Pictures. Robert Downey Jr., the legendary detective borrows its shape, and Jude Law plays Holmes' reliable Mr Watson, of Sherlock Holmes as a doctor and war veteran actively supported.
    • fb100001513380747
      fb100001513380747: I've seen) adaptation, with really good visuals and mystery as usual, I've ever seen on the famous detective. (A-)
      Reviewed 7 months days ago
    • Deckard42
      Deckard42: A different, yet all together fun adaption of the worlds greatest detective, all thanks to the chemistry of Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law.
      Reviewed 6 months days ago
    • fb100001276915292
      fb100001276915292: A terrific remake of an old-fashion detective icon. Richie's direction is smooth and fierce, while Downey and Law play off each other in
      Reviewed 23 days days ago
  • Brick

    Brick (R, 2006)

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Nora Zehetner, Lukas Haas, Noah Fleiss, Noah Segan
    "Brick," while taking its cues and its verbal style from the novels of Dashiell Hammett, also honors... read more the rich cinematic tradition of the hard-boiled noir mystery, here wittily and bracingly immersed in fresh territory - a modern-day Southern California neighborhood and high school. There, student Brendan Frye's piercing intelligence spares no one. Brendan is not afraid to back up his words with actions, and knows all the angles; yet he prefers to stay an outsider, and does - until the day that his ex-girlfriend, Emily reaches out to him unexpectedly and then vanishes. Brendan's feelings for her still run deep; so much so, that he becomes consumed with finding his troubled inamorata. To find her, Brendan enlists the aid of his only true peer, The Brain, while keeping the assistant vice principal only occasionally informed of what quickly becomes a dangerous investigation. Brendan's single-minded unearthing of students' secrets thrusts him headlong into the colliding social orbits of rich-girl sophisticate Laura, intimidating Tugger, substance-abusing Dode, seductive Kara, jock Brad and - most ominously - non-student The Pin. It is only by gaining acceptance into The Pin's closely guarded inner circle of crime and punishment that Brendan will be able to uncover hard truths about himself, Emily and the suspects that he is getting closer to.
    • fb630980501
      fb630980501: . Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays a detective like character of Brendan, out to find how this love of an ex-girlfriend ended up dead. He
      Reviewed 18 months days ago
    • fb669445283
      fb669445283: . He starts trying to help her, and soon finds out she was killed. He than becomes detective Brendan and tries to find her killer, and why.

      As I said before, this movie shouldn't ha
      Reviewed 2 years days ago
    • fb1092288494
      fb1092288494: A noir detective film set in present day high school. A truly great film from a visionary director.
      Reviewed 2 years days ago
  • Zodiac

    Zodiac (R, 2007)

    Mark Ruffalo, Jake Gyllenhaal, Robert Downey Jr., Anthony Edwards, Brian Cox
    As a serial killer terrifies the San Francisco Bay Area and taunts police with his ciphers and lette... read morers, investigators in four jurisdictions search for the murderer. The case will become an obsession for four men as their lives and careers are built and destroyed by the endless trail of clues.
    • fb511930079
      fb511930079: morality, and grim doings whose compelling script and incredible cast raise it out of the standard detective movie fair. RDJ is on top form, while Ruffalo & Gyllenhaal carry the movie to the 2.5 hour
      Reviewed 4 months days ago
    • fb1084489261
      fb1084489261: Great detective movie, very suspenseful and the real case has never been solved
      Reviewed 23 months days ago
    • fb100003955421142
      fb100003955421142: certain situations but it's a movie where jake has to be prove himself and shines throughouT as the detective. The downside that comes to mind is that for me it was too long, but I think it was the po
      Reviewed 2 years days ago
  • Seven (Se7en)

    Seven (Se7en) (R, 1995)

    Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kevin Spacey, R. Lee Ermey
    Director David Fincher's dark, stylish thriller ranks as one of the decade's most influential box-of... read morefice successes. Set in a hellish vision of a New York-like city, where it is always raining and the air crackles with impending death, the film concerns Det. William Somerset (Morgan Freeman), a homicide specialist just one week from a well-deserved retirement. Every minute of his 32 years on the job is evident in Somerset's worn, exhausted face, and his soul aches with the pain that can only come from having seen and felt far too much. But Somerset's retirement must wait for one last case, for which he is teamed with young hotshot David Mills (Brad Pitt), the fiery detective set to replace him at the end of the week. Mills has talked his reluctant wife, Tracy (Gwyneth Paltrow), into moving to the big city so that he can tackle important cases, but his first and Somerset's last are more than either man has bargained for. A diabolical serial killer is staging grisly murders, choosing victims representing the seven deadly sins. First, an obese man is forced to eat until his stomach ruptures to represent gluttony, then a wealthy defense lawyer is made to cut off a pound of his own flesh as penance for greed. Somerset initially refuses to take the case, realizing that there will be five more murders, ghastly sermons about lust, sloth, pride, wrath, and envy presented by a madman to a sinful world. Somerset is correct, and something within him cannot let the case go, forcing the weary detective to team with Mills and see the case to its almost unspeakably horrible conclusion. The moody photography is by Darius Khondji; the nauseatingly vivid special effects are by makeup artist Rob Bottin, best known for more fantasy-oriented work in films like The Howling (1981). ~ Robert Firsching, Rovi
    • henryfarman
      henryfarman: I thought it was really overrated, but I think that was just me hating on the other 99% of American detective films that are all total garbage. This is without a doubt the best movie of its kind, wher
      Reviewed 2 months days ago
    • fb100002362637954
      fb100002362637954: . Fincher creates a modern noir serial killer detective film that keeps you in a dark place you can't get out of. You can see the talent he has wi
      Reviewed 18 months days ago
    • springheeljack84
      springheeljack84: Hands down, the best serial killer/detective flick I've ever seen. It's the character development that kept me glued to this one. I can
      Reviewed 2 years days ago
  • The Maltese Falcon

    The Maltese Falcon (PG, 1941)

    Humphrey Bogart, Mary Astor, Peter Lorre, Sydney Greenstreet, Ward Bond
    After two previous film versions of Dashiell Hammett's detective classic The Maltese Falcon, Warner ... read moreBros. finally got it right in 1941--or, rather, John Huston, a long-established screenwriter making his directorial debut, got it right, simply by adhering as closely as possible to the original. Taking over from a recalcitrant George Raft, Humphrey Bogart achieved true stardom as Sam Spade, a hard-boiled San Francisco private eye who can be as unscrupulous as the next guy but also adheres to his own personal code of honor. Into the offices of the Spade & Archer detective agency sweeps a Miss Wonderly (Mary Astor), who offers a large retainer to Sam and his partner Miles Archer (Jerome Cowan) if they'll protect her from someone named Floyd Thursby. The detectives believe neither Miss Wonderly nor her story, but they believe her money. Since Archer saw her first, he takes the case -- and later that evening he is shot to death, as is the mysterious Thursby. Miss Wonderly's real name turns out to be Brigid O'Shaughnessey, and, as the story continues, Sam is also introduced to the effeminate Joel Cairo (Peter Lorre) and the fat, erudite Kasper Gutman (Sydney Greenstreet, in his film debut). It turns out that Brigid, Cairo and Gutman are all international scoundrels, all involved in the search for a foot-high, jewel-encrusted statuette in the shape of a falcon. Though both Cairo and Gutman offer Spade small fortunes to find the "black bird," they are obviously willing to commit mayhem and murder towards that goal: Gutman, for example, drugs Spade and allows his "gunsel" Wilmer (Elisha Cook Jr.) to kick and beat the unconscious detective. This classic film noir detective yarn gets better with each viewing, which is more than can be said for the first two Maltese Falcons and the ill-advised 1975 "sequel" The Black Bird. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi
    • fb503715004
      fb503715004: ove movie mysteries, and this is one of the best! Humphrey Bogart is at his most iconic playing the detective Sam Spade.

      Brigid O'Shaughnessy: I haven't lived a good life. I've been bad, worse than y
      Reviewed 18 months days ago
    • amityisland
      amityisland: Most detective stories don't warrant repeat viewings. This film improves with repeated visits.
      Reviewed 23 months days ago
    • xXxXHorrorFanxXxX
      xXxXHorrorFanxXxX: . The illustration is of detective Sam Spade by Henry C. Murphy, Jr. Cover of the magazine "Black Mask", September 1929, feat
      Reviewed 5 years days ago
  • Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang

    Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang (R, 2005)

    Robert Downey Jr., Val Kilmer, Michelle Monaghan, Corbin Bernsen, Dash Mihok
    A murder mystery brings together a private eye, a struggling actress, and a thief masquerading as an... read more actor.
    • fb821880446
      fb821880446: .

      Val Kilmer and Michelle Monaghan are introduced, Kilemr being a detective of sorts, and Monoghan is connected to an unsolved case of murder.

      The chemistry betwee
      Reviewed 23 months days ago
    • fb1146922119
      fb1146922119: . I highly reccommend this movie to any fan of class film noir or a good modern detective films.
      Reviewed 2 years days ago
    • fb734502234
      fb734502234: Really interesting take on the LA Detective genre. Val Kilmer and Robert Downey Jr terrific togethe
      Reviewed 3 years days ago
  • Gone Baby Gone

    Gone Baby Gone (R, 2007)

    Casey Affleck, Michelle Monaghan, Morgan Freeman, Ed Harris, John Ashton
    Ben Affleck's adaptation of Dennis Lehane's novel Gone, Baby, Gone stars Casey Affleck as Patrick Ke... read morenzie, a private investigator from working-class Boston who takes on a case involving a kidnapped girl. The girl's aunt begs Patrick to take the case because he has connections to criminal Boston that the police do not. He agrees and along with his partner, Angie Gennaro (Michelle Monaghan), they uncover a web of corruption that threatens the relationship between the two. Ed Harris and Morgan Freeman co-star as members of the Boston Police Department. ~ Perry Seibert, Rovi
    • spitfiremk51
      spitfiremk51: . It has a little bit of everything in it, detective work, drugs, and action, and does them all in hope of saving a child. Some scenes are dis
      Reviewed 2 days days ago
    • CliffBarnes
      CliffBarnes: . It's a good mystery/detective film with essences of drama and action, but the reason I rate this movie so highly is beca
      Reviewed 4 years days ago
    • scottydgibbs
      scottydgibbs: inating look at boston and a case where a little girl goes missing, and the involvment of a private detective played by casey afleck, getting hired to find her, amounst the hysteria of media, and poli
      Reviewed 6 years days ago
  • Chinatown

    Chinatown (R, 1974)

    Jack Nicholson, Faye Dunaway, John Huston, Perry Lopez, John Hillerman
    A private detective, Jake Gittes, hired to investigate an adultery case, stumbles on the plot of a m... read moreurder involving incest and the privatization of water through state and municipal corruption, land use and real estate. If he doesn't drop the case at once he faces threats of legal action, but he pursues it anyway, slowly uncovering a vast conspiracy.
    • fb57501118
      fb57501118: For my money, the greatest detective movie ever made.
      Reviewed 48 days days ago
    • fb755078042
      fb755078042: . The film's plot focuses on a detective working on a case that seems deeper than what he thinks. The film is full of story, Towne
      Reviewed 6 months days ago
    • fb35906603
      fb35906603: A dark noir murder mystery with a very young Nicholson. Nicholson is so young he doesn't even act l
      Reviewed 15 months days ago
  • Blade Runner

    Blade Runner (R, 1982)

    Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, Edward James Olmos, M. Emmet Walsh
    A blend of science fiction and noir detective fiction, Blade Runner (1982) was a box office and crit... read moreical bust upon its initial exhibition, but its unique postmodern production design became hugely influential within the sci-fi genre, and the film gained a significant cult following that increased its stature. Harrison Ford stars as Rick Deckard, a retired cop in Los Angeles circa 2019. L.A. has become a pan-cultural dystopia of corporate advertising, pollution and flying automobiles, as well as replicants, human-like androids with short life spans built by the Tyrell Corporation for use in dangerous off-world colonization. Deckard's former job in the police department was as a talented blade runner, a euphemism for detectives that hunt down and assassinate rogue replicants. Called before his one-time superior (M. Emmett Walsh), Deckard is forced back into active duty. A quartet of replicants led by Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) has escaped and headed to Earth, killing several humans in the process. After meeting with the eccentric Eldon Tyrell (Joe Turkel), creator of the replicants, Deckard finds and eliminates Zhora (Joanna Cassidy), one of his targets. Attacked by another replicant, Leon (Brion James), Deckard is about to be killed when he's saved by Rachael (Sean Young), Tyrell's assistant and a replicant who's unaware of her true nature. In the meantime, Batty and his replicant pleasure model lover, Pris (Darryl Hannah) use a dying inventor, J.F. Sebastian (William Sanderson) to get close to Tyrell and murder him. Deckard tracks the pair to Sebastian's, where a bloody and violent final confrontation between Deckard and Batty takes place on a skyscraper rooftop high above the city. In 1992, Ridley Scott released a popular director's cut that removed Deckard's narration, added a dream sequence, and excised a happy ending imposed by the results of test screenings; these legendary behind-the-scenes battles were chronicled in a 1996 tome, Future Noir: The Making of Blade Runner by Paul M. Sammon. ~ Karl Williams, Rovi
    • ajquioc
      ajquioc: . These themes are set in a fairly basic detective story that moves slowly but gradually builds power as the viewer is immersed in a dystopia
      Reviewed 4 months days ago
    • bengreenly
      bengreenly: . Harrison Ford is fantastic as ever as a badass detective or a 'Blade Runner'. Rutger Hauer also plays an awesome villain I particularly loved his s
      Reviewed 4 months days ago
    • fb100000222539113
      fb100000222539113: ... Time to die.

      "A Futuristic Vision Perfected"

      A chilling, bold, mesmerizing, futuristic detective thriller. The concept and plot of the movie is so brilliant and complex with the themes pr
      Reviewed 17 months days ago
  • Max Payne

    Max Payne (PG-13, 2008)

    Mark Wahlberg, Mila Kunis, Beau Bridges, Chris "Ludacris" Bridges, Olga Kurylenko
    Max Payne is a maverick cop - a mythic anti-hero - determined to track down those responsible for th... read moree brutal murders of his family and partner. Hell-bent on revenge, his obsessive investigation takes him on a nightmare journey into a dark underworld. As the mystery deepens, Max is forced to battle enemies beyond the natural world and face an unthinkable betrayal.
    • tico007al1
      tico007al1: . But this film just kills every little thing about that. The video game is about a detective who is also a loving father and husband to his wife and daughter. The film then takes a ti
      Reviewed 3 months days ago
    • fb509096183
      fb509096183: .

      The story involves Max Payne(Mark Wahlberg), an ex-detective, still unable to let go of the mysterious death of his wife and son. He continues, to this
      Reviewed 16 months days ago
    • tonyguyan
      tonyguyan: Having never played the video game I was going into this movie adaptation rather blind. It wasn't a
      Reviewed 22 months days ago