Looking to watch a movie with big crimes, lots of guns, and an unhealthy dose of profanity? Fuhgeddaboutit! We’re here to tell you about the best gangster movies on Netflix right now.
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Netflix’s selection of gangster movies is robust, but a lot of the heavy hitters are missing. The series of Godfather films and Goodfellas are nowhere to be found on the service, for example. However, there are some bonafide classics available, as well as a few off-the-beaten-path gems you should definitely check out. Don’t have Netflix? You can sign up at the link below:
Best gangster movies on Netflix:
Editor’s note: We will regularly update this list of the best gangster movies on Netflix as films come and go from the service.
If you aren’t into stressful movies, you may want to give this one a pass. However, Uncut Gems is a perfect example of the Safdie brothers and Adam Sandler at their finest. Sandler portrays Howard Ratner, a jeweler deep in debt to the wrong people for his gambling addiction. Ratner may not be a gangster, but he sure owes them a heap of money. All he has to do is find the right bet and secure a big payoff — without placing another bet and bringing it all crashing down.
Nearly 20 years after Goodfellas, Scorsese and De Niro teamed up again for this 2019 Netflix original movie. It’s over three hours long, but it’s still very watchable. It’s based loosely on the real-life story of Frank Sheeran (De Niro), who served in World War II and later became a truck driver. In the end, he became a hitman for the mob and was involved with the late head of the Teamsters Union, Jimmy Hoffa.
When this movie was first released, many reviewers wrote about how advanced technology was used to “de-age” De Niro and other cast members as we watch their lives from World War II to nearly the present day. Thankfully, you don’t have to worry about visual effects overshadowing the story. The Irishman still works as an examination of the life of a mob hitman.
Ever wonder what would happen if Jaime Lannister joined a gang in prison? Well, this film stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, but that’s as close as we’ll get. During a prison term for DUI, Coster-Waldau’s character Jacob Harlon falls in with a violent gang and makes his way through its ranks. Upon his release, he’s tasked with orchestrating a weapons deal with another gang or risk the lives of his family. Shot Caller is one of the gangster movies on Netflix focused on time spent behind bars.
Gun City is a Spanish gangster film set in Barcelona in 1921. It’s best experienced in its native language, and it follows detectives as they try to track down anarchists who hijacked a military train. The detectives turn to increasingly brutal methods to get their information, including murder. Once the detectives get to the heart of the situation, they have precious little time to work out a solution or risk further bloodshed.
Killing Them Softly
Brad Pitt stars in this interesting 2012 film as a mob hitman. He’s hired to find and kill two men in New Orleans who robbed a major mobster’s regular card game. Of course, you can expect to see lots of twists in this tale, along with great performances from Pitt, Scoot McNairy, and Ben Mendelsohn as the card game thieves and the late and great James Gandolfini as another hitman who joins Pitt in his job.
This 2006 Martin Scorsese classic is a race between an undercover cop and a mole trying to expose each other in the Irish mob. It stars an outstanding cast of Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, and more. Nicholson plays mob boss Frank Costello, who grooms Colin Sullivan (Damon) for his role as a mole. DiCaprio portrays Billy Costigan, the undercover officer sent to infiltrate Costello’s crew.
The Departed cleaned up at the 79th Academy Awards, bringing home Best Picture, Best Director, Best Adapted Screenplay, and Best Film Editing. It’s one gangster movie on Netflix that you don’t want to miss.
Daniel Craig got the attention of the producers of the James Bond movies thanks in part to this 2004 UK crime film. He plays a cocaine dealer who has become very successful in the British mafia. However, his character is finally looking like he is close to retiring and getting away from this life of crime. Unfortunately, his bosses still have plans for one final major job he has to accomplish. This was also the debut movie for director Matthew Vaughn, who later directed X-Men: First Class, Kick-Ass, and the Kingsman spy movies.
Kill The Irishman
Not to be confused with The Irishman earlier on this list, this 2011 film is based on the true story of Danny Greene. Played by Ray Stevenson, Greene rose through the Mafia ranks in Cleveland, Ohio, in the 1960s and 1970s. His life finally ended as part of a turf war between the Irish and Italian Mafia. Christopher Walken and Val Kilmer also star in this fascinating look at a different part of organized crime in America.
Netflix Original films are starting to grow in popularity and prestige. Imperial Dreams won the Audience Award at the 2014 Sundance Festival and has been a hit for the streaming company. It is no surprise Imperial Dreams had such success, as it follows popular themes such as mass incarceration, police racism, education, and gang life. Reformed gangster Bambi leaves prison and returns to Watts, Los Angeles. Plenty of obstacles get in his way to rehabilitation.
This 2015 movie brings us Tom Hardy, playing dual roles as both Ronnie and Reggie Kray. The real-life identical twin brothers were much-feared mobsters in London during the 1950s and 1960s. We witness their rise and fall as gangsters until they finally get arrested and sentenced to life in prison in 1969.
Here are a few more great gangster movies on Netflix that didn’t quite make the main list:
- The Debt Collector – A martial artist who is down on his luck is recruited to be the mob’s debt collector.
- Sleepless – Jamie Foxx plays a crooked Las Vegas cop who tries to rob a mobster’s casino.
- Triple 9 – A group of corrupt Atlanta cops, targeted by the Russian mob, decide to go through with a major heist.
- Middle Men – A couple of guys decide to launch an adult online entertainment business, quickly getting organized crime’s attention.
- Lawless – Based on true events, this movie tells the story of two brothers who, in the 1930s, became famous for bootlegging moonshine in the Virginia mountains.
That’s our collection of the best gangster movies on Netflix right now! We will update this list as new movies arrive — or, unfortunately, some of the films on this list leave the streaming service.