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The Best Gangster Movies and TV Shows on The Criterion Channel

Finding a good Gangster movie and TV show to watch can be hard, so we've ranked the best ones and included where to watch them. Check out our list of the best Gangster movies and TV shows of all time streaming on The Criterion Channel.

VIEW: best
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1. La Haine

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
8.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo100%
Reelgood Logo
87/100
Released: 1995
Crime, Drama

What it's about: Aimlessly whiling away their days in the concrete environs of their dead-end suburbia, Vinz, Hubert, and Said - a Jew, African, and an Arab - give human faces to France's immigrant populations, their bristling resentment at their social marginalization slowly simmering until it reaches a climactic boiling point.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Prime Video).

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2. Escape from New York

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.2/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo85%
Reelgood Logo
82/100
Released: 1981Rated: R
Action & Adventure, Cult

What it's about: In 1997, the island of Manhattan has been walled off and turned into a giant maximum security prison within which the country's worst criminals are left to form their own anarchic society. However, when the President of the United States crash lands on the island, the authorities turn to a former soldier and current convict to rescue him.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (CBS All Access, The Criterion Channel & fuboTV) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 6 services (iTunes, Google Play & 4 others).

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3. A Brighter Summer Day

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
8.4/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo100%
Reelgood Logo
79/100
Released: 1991
Crime, Drama

What it's about: A boy experiences first love, friendships and injustices growing up in 1960s Taiwan.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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4. Police Story

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo92%
Reelgood Logo
79/100
Released: 1985Rated: PG-13
Action & Adventure, Comedy

What it's about: A virtuous Hong Kong police officer must clear his name after he is framed for murder.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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5. Gomorrah

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo92%
Reelgood Logo
77/100
Released: 2008
Crime, Drama

What it's about: An inside look at Italy's modern-day crime families, the Camorra in Naples and Caserta. Based on a book by Roberto Saviano. Power, money and blood: these are the "values" that the residents of the Province of Naples and Caserta have to face every day. They hardly ever have a choice and are forced to obey the rules of the Camorra. Only a lucky few can even think of leading a normal life.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Prime Video).

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6. The Long Good Friday

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo96%
Reelgood Logo
76/100
Released: 1980Rated: R
Crime, Cult

What it's about: In the late 1970s, Cockney crime boss Harold Shand, a gangster trying to become a legitimate property mogul, has big plans to get the American Mafia to bankroll his transformation of a derelict area of London into the possible venue for a future Olympic Games. However, a series of bombings targets his empire on the very weekend the Americans are in town. Shand is convinced there is a traitor in his organization, and sets out to eliminate the rat in typically ruthless fashion.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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7. Drunken Angel

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.7/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo93%
Reelgood Logo
73/100
Released: 1948
Crime, Drama

What it's about: A drunken doctor with a hot temper and a violence-prone gangster with tuberculosis form a quicksilver bond.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (FilmBox, The Criterion Channel & Kanopy).

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8. Mona Lisa

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.3/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo97%
Reelgood Logo
73/100
Released: 1986Rated: R
Crime, Cult

What it's about: George is a small-time crook just out of prison who discovers his tough-guy image is out of date. Reduced to working as a minder/driver for high class call girl Simone, he has to agree when she asks him to find a young colleague from her King's Cross days. That's when George's troubles just start.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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9. Branded to Kill

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.3/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo100%
Reelgood Logo
72/100
Released: 1967
Action & Adventure, Crime

What it's about: After botching his latest assignment, a third-ranked Japanese hit man becomes the target of another assassin.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel, Kanopy & Realeyz) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 3 services (iTunes, Prime Video & Vudu).

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10. The Hit

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo85%
Reelgood Logo
67/100
Released: 1984Rated: R
Crime, Drama

What it's about: Ex-gangster Willie Parker has betrayed his former "colleagues" and now lives in Spain where he thinks he can hide from their vengeance...

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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11. Pale Flower

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo86%
Reelgood Logo
67/100
Released: 1964
Crime, Thriller

What it's about: Muraki, a hardboiled Yakuza gangster, has just been released from prison after serving a sentence for murder. Revisiting his old gambling haunts, he meets Saeko, a striking young upper-class woman who is out seeking thrills, and whose presence adds spice to the staid masculine underworld rituals. Muraki becomes her mentor while simultaneously coping with the shifts of power that have affected the gangs while he was interred. When he notices a rogue, drug-addicted young punk hanging around the gambling dens, he realizes that Saeko's insatiable lust for intense pleasures may be leading her to self-destruction.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel & Kanopy).

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12. Ghidorah, the Three-Headed Monster

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo75%
Reelgood Logo
62/100
Released: 1964
Action & Adventure, Fantasy

What it's about: The 5th film in the original Godzilla franchise marked a turning point in the series. Godzilla, Rodan and Mothra must put aside their quarrelsome ways to become allies and defend earth from 3 headed Dragon King Ghidorah.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 2 services (Prime Video & FandangoNOW).

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13. Le Deuxième souffle

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
8.0/10
Rotten Tomatoes Logo100%
Reelgood Logo
59/100
Released: 1966
Crime, Drama

What it's about: A gangster escapes jail and quickly makes plans to continue his criminal ways elsewhere, but a determined inspector is closing in.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $2.99 on 4 services (iTunes, Google Play & 2 others).

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14. The Sun's Burial

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
45/100
Released: 1960
Drama

What it's about: In Osaka's slum, youth without futures engage in pilfering, assault and robbery, prostitution, and the buying and selling of identity cards and of blood. Alliances constantly shift. Tatsu and Takeshi, friends since boyhood, reluctantly join Shin's gang. Shin's an upstart and moves his gang often to avoid the local kingpin. Hanoko is a young woman with ambitions: first she's in the blood business with her father, then she joins forces with Shin. She soon breaks off that partnership, even though she's taken the sensitive Takeshi under her wing. Double crosses multiply. Those with the closest bonds become each others' murderers.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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15. Woman in Witness Protection

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.8/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
36/100
Released: 1997
Comedy, Drama

What it's about: In this made-in-Japan drama/comedy/gangster movie from director Juzo Itami a star actress, Biwako (played by Nobuko Miyamoto), is the sole witness to a grizzly murder. The cops persuade Biwako to play the bait to catch the killers. Two veteran detectives are assigned to protect her at all times, and as the film progresses the guardians have no choice but to deal with the overly dramatic, hilarious, and sometimes harrowing ups-and-downs of Biwako's life. Beautifully shot and dynamically structured in a way that only the Japanese are capable of, Marutai reminds us that sometimes the most loyal friendships are formed under the darkest circumstances.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel).

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16. Heat Wave

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.6/10
Rotten Tomatoes LogoN/A
Reelgood Logo
34/100
Released: 1991
Crime, Drama

What it's about: Rin Jyoshima lost her father to death-by-gambling; years later, she's grown up in the Kosugi household and has fallen victim to gambling herself.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $9.99 on 2 services (iTunes & Vudu).