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The Best Spy Movies and TV Shows on The Criterion Channel

Finding a good Spy 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 Spy movies and TV shows of all time streaming on The Criterion Channel.

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1. The 39 Steps

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.6/10
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82/100
Released: 1935
Mystery, Thriller

What it's about: Richard Hannay stumbles upon a conspiracy that thrusts him into a hectic chase across the Scottish moors—a chase in which he is both the pursuer and the pursued—as well as into an unexpected romance with the cool Pamela.

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

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2. Ivan's Childhood

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
8.1/10
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81/100
Released: 1962Rated: R
Drama, Independent

What it's about: In WW2, twelve year old Soviet orphan Ivan Bondarev works for the Soviet army as a scout behind the German lines and strikes a friendship with three sympathetic Soviet officers.

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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3. Duck Soup

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.8/10
Reelgood Logo
81/100
Released: 1933
Comedy, Musical

What it's about: Rufus T. Firefly is named president/dictator of bankrupt Freedonia and declares war on neighboring Sylvania over the love of wealthy Mrs. Teasdale.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $3.99 on 5 services (iTunes, Google Play & 3 others).

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4. Foreign Correspondent

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.5/10
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77/100
Released: 1940
Romance, Thriller

What it's about: The European war was only beginning to erupt across national borders. Johnny Jones, an American crime reporter dispatched by his New York publisher to put a fresh spin on the drowsy dispatches emanating from overseas, has a nose for a good story—which promptly leads him to the crime of fascism and Nazi Germany's designs on European conquest. In attempting to learn more about a seemingly noble peace effort, Jones walks into the middle of an assassination, uncovers a spy ring and—not entirely coincidentally—falls in love.

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

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5. Hopscotch

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.1/10
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68/100
Released: 1980Rated: R
Action & Adventure, Comedy

What it's about: When CIA operative Miles Kendig deliberately lets KGB agent Yaskov get away, his boss threatens to retire him. Kendig beats him to it, however, destroying his own records and traveling to Austria where he begins work on a memoir that will expose all his former agency's covert practices. The CIA catches wind of the book and sends other agents after him, initiating a frenetic game of cat and mouse that spans the globe.

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

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6. The Lady Vanishes

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
7.8/10
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65/100
Released: 1938
Comedy, Mystery

What it's about: On a train headed for England a group of travelers is delayed by an avalanche. Holed up in a hotel in a fictional European country, young Iris befriends elderly Miss Froy. When the train resumes, Iris suffers a bout of unconsciousness and wakes to find the old woman has disappeared. The other passengers ominously deny Miss Froy ever existed, so Iris begins to investigate with another traveler and, as the pair sleuth, romantic sparks fly.

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

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7. Love on the Run

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.0/10
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57/100
Released: 1936
Comedy, Fantasy

What it's about: A runaway bride and an undercover reporter get caught up in political intrigue as they lead a merry chase across Europe and uncover a spy plot.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a subscription service (The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $1.99 on 4 services (iTunes, Prime Video & 2 others).

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8. Q Planes

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.5/10
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47/100
Released: 1939
Comedy, Drama

What it's about: An eccentric Scotland Yard inspector thinks something beamed from a spy ship is dropping planes.

Where to Watch: Available to stream on a popular subscription service (Prime Video & The Criterion Channel) & rent or buy from $0.99 on 1 service (Prime Video).

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9. Ironfinger

IMDB LogoIMDB Star
6.3/10
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35/100
Released: 1965
Action & Adventure, Comedy

What it's about: After being mistaken for an Interpol agent, a man who was just supposed to go on vacation gets mixed up in a war between two gangs intent on winning the favor of a notorious arms dealer.

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

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