57 Best Murder Mystery Movies Of All Time

They scare, they confound, but most of all they entertain.

best murder mystery movies IMDB

The murder mystery genre has intrigued many for years.

Long before the invention of movies, murder mysteries were prominent in literature; in fact, many of the best murder mystery movies were adapted from books.

Murder mysteries can be bone-chillingly creepy, gorey, thrilling, and even humorous. They can be fun to try to solve along the way with the characters, or you may just revel in the mystifying twists and turns.


Murder mystery movies have drawn crowds since the early 20th century. In fact, this genre is so popular they often call for remakes and sequels. So, what better way to spend your time than watching the greatest murder mystery movies?

57 Best Murder Mystery Movies Of All Time

1. North By Northwest (1959)

RELATED: 10 Best Movies About True Scary Stories & Where To Watch Them


Roger Thornhill led a regular life as a New York advertising executive until he is mistaken as a spy, named George Kaplan, and framed for murder. He is then on the run from the police and other spies.

Action and mystery ensue as Roger tries to get to the bottom of this misunderstanding with the help of a gorgeous blonde named Eve. No one trusts Roger’s claims that he is not George Kaplan, and no one he encounters can be trusted by him either.

2. Se7en (1995)

Seasoned detective William Somerset has to team up with his new partner, David Mills, to investigate a string of serial killings. These murders are unique because each is representative of one of the seven deadly sins making the murderer feel justified in his actions.


This murder mystery navigates the nuances of morality as the two detectives try to make sense of their investigation and catch the killer.

3. The Maltese Falcon (1941)

Based on a novel that revolutionized mystery storytelling, "The Maltese Falcon" is a hard-boiled detective classic.

Detective Sam Spade is approached by a damsel in distress about her missing sister. During this meeting Spade’s partner is murdered, and a couple of thugs soon after attack him and demand that he locate the mysterious and valuable statue, the maltese falcon. Of course these three threads must be interconnected, but how?


This film is chock full of film noir emblems like a femme fatale, a big, bad crime boss, and loose strings begging to be tied.

4. Knives Out (2019)

Detective Benoit Blanc’s job gets a lot harder as he investigates the murder of Harlan Thrombey, a crime novelist, as the Thrombey family’s dysfunction cloud the truth.

The murder occurred at the author’s elaborate birthday party with a plethora of guests. Everyone in the family is a suspect leading to many red herrings for Blanc to chase. The film stars Ana de Armas, Chris Evans, and Daniel Craig, and was written and directed by Rian Johnson.


5. Murder On The Orient Express (1974)

The Orient Express is fully booked, and detective Hercule Poirot just so happens to be on it. The train halts on its tracks surrounded due to snow which gives Poirot the perfect opportunity to solve the murder of one of the first-class passengers without the killer having means to escape.

But Poirot has many suspects to sift through and no background on the victim, other than the fact that the victim had approached the detective earlier because he had received death threats.

6. Psycho (1960)

In this Hitchcock classic, Marion Crane steals $40,000 from her job to escape her controlling boyfriend. On her journey, Marion stops to rest at the Bates Motel run by a taxidermist with mommy issues.


As she regrets her decision to not only stay at the Bates Motel, but her decision to run away altogether, Marion’s ex-boyfriend and company find her, and she finds herself in a mess of trouble.

7. Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)

This murder mystery is a goofy one because half of the cast is cartoon characters. Roger Rabbit — who, yes, is a rabbit — is framed for the murder of his wife’s lover.

Detective Eddie Valiant gets pretty sick of his client’s antics, but his investment in solving the case sucks him into uncovering all of the secrets of Roger’s Hollywood life.


8. And Then There Were None (1945)

Based on an Agatha Christie story, 10 people of no acquaintance are invited to an island. They do not know who brought them there or why.

As they await their host, the 10 guests begin to get killed off one by one. Can they figure out who the murder is and get off this island before there is no one left?

9. Shutter Island (2010)

U.S. Marshall Teddy Daniels and his new partner, Chuck Aule, are summoned to an insane asylum on an island after one of their murderous patients escapes. As they try to find the patient, Daniels and Aule are also confronted with the malpractices of the asylum.


The inner workings of the asylum and the spooky island put Daniels and Aule in grave danger and bone-chilling experiences.

10. Chinatown (1974)

Detective J.J. Gittes is hired to track a man suspected of infidelity by his wife. As he follows the man, Hollis Mulwray, Gittes sees that his actions are a lot darker than cheating.

Nonetheless, Gittes suspects Mulwray’s innocence and that they are both being framed. Gittes’ new mission is to find the real culprit and keep himself secure.


11. The Big Sleep (1946)

Detective Philip Marlowe is hired by General Sternwood to help get his daughter out of her gambling debt. The older Sternwood daughter decides to help Marlowe because the situation is much more complicated than she thinks her father realizes.

The situation complicates further as people close to the Sternwood family start getting killed off.

12. Get Out (2017)

Chris goes home with his girlfriend, Rose, to meet her family. Tensions arise when the young Black man discovers his girlfriend’s family is racist.


Tensions tighten as the conduct at the household grows stranger and stranger. What is really going on with this family, and why would Rose bring Chris here?

13. Charade (1963)

Regina Lampert returns from a skiing vacation in the Alps where she met the charming Peter Joshua to find her husband dead. She enlists Peter’s help to solve the murder and a potential past war crime.

Those close to Regina and her late husband can no longer be trusted, so why does she trust this handsome stranger?


14. A Simple Favor (2018)

Widowed, single mother Stephanie has always admired her fortunate best friend Emily who appears to have it all. When Emily goes missing, Stephanie starts digging around for clues and finds that her best friend was keeping a heap of secrets.

15. Oldboy (2003)

Drunkard Dae-Su is abducted off the street and wakes up in a cell. He is isolated and drugged for the next 15 years until his sudden release. Dae-Su then attempts to track down his captors and learn why he was imprisoned in the first place.


16. The Name Of The Rose (1976)

A monk, William of Baskerville, and his apprentice, Adso of Melk, are called to an abbey to investigate a suspicious death. During the investigation, more bodies are piling up. William must turn to his nemesis to get to the bottom of these strange killings.

17. You Were Never Really Here (2017)

A traumatized veteran, Joe, decides to go rogue and find missing girls for a living. His next job is to find the daughter of a Senator.


Through his war flashbacks and brute motivation, Joe begins to discover conspiracy is afoot. But who will listen to a violent, drugged-up bounty hunter about state politics?

RELATED: What New DNA Testing Could Reveal About The Murder Of JonBenét Ramsey 26 Years Later

18. The Silence Of The Lambs (1991)

Clarice Starling is training to be an FBI agent. She is prompted to interview the serial killer, Hannibal Lecter, to see if he has any information about recent killings since he has been locked up.


Clarice is chosen for this assignment because, as a pretty woman, Hannibal may be more responsive to her. Hannibal Lecter speaks in riddles, but Clarice’s mission is dependent on him.

19. Mother (2009)

When Do-joon is accused of murder, his mother springs into action to clear his name. All she wants to do is protect her son, but the matters that this acupuncturist mother runs into are hard to take.

20. Dial M For Murder (1954)

Tony Wendice is a former pro tennis player and wants to murder his wife to secure her inheritance. He discovers that she was having an affair and believes that he concocted the perfect plan to get rid of her. But his plan goes awry and he is now trying to elude the police and his wife.


21. The Usual Suspects (1995)

After leaving a heist of millions while exploding the San Pedro Harbor, con man Kint tries to pin the whole thing on a legend of a serial killer, Keyser Stone. Kint not only has to prove his innocence with Keyser’s guilt, but he has to prove that Keyser really exists.

22. The Nice Guys (2016)

Private investigator Holland March finds himself teaming up with bounty hunter Jackson Healy to find a missing woman, Amelia. Their investigation leads them to some shady and powerful people with a scandalous twist.


23. Sherlock Holmes (2009)

Famed detective, Sherlock Holmes, and his partner, Dr. Watson, easily connect a string of murders to Lord Blackwood. However, Blackwood has a much bigger plan in mind.

Holmes and Watson get tangled in Blackwood’s dark magic occult practices and need to discover his true intentions before it is too late.

24. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005)

Ne’er-do-well Harry Lockhart finds himself at an audition for a mystery film and wins the lead role. He meets his childhood crush, Harmony Lane, and private eye, Perry van Shrike, when his new Hollywood life proves to have much darker activities than he signed up for.


25. Zodiac (2007)

Cartoonist Robert Graysmith meets journalist, Paul Avery, finding they both have an interest in the Zodiac Killer. As Robert becomes obsessed with deciphering the killer’s cryptic messages and discovering their identity, Avery becomes drunker and more belligerent.

This film is a fictionalized story based on a real murderer from the 1970s.

26. The Ninth Guest (1934)

Predating Agatha Christie’s story "And Then There Were None," 8 strangers are invited to a party in a penthouse. The mysterious host’s voice comes on the radio to reveal that one by one they will be killed until they can outwit the 9th guest, Death.


27. Burning (2018)

Jong-su runs into a girl he knew growing up, Hae-mi, who asks him to watch her cat while she is away on a trip. When she returns, Hae-mi introduces Jong-su to her new boyfriend she met while abroad, Ben.

Ben then reveals to Jong-su a dark secret and the two are then intertwined in a race to see who will come out of this situation alive.

28. The Last Of Sheila (1973)

Sheila Green is killed in a hit-and-run accident one night while walking home. A year later her husband, Clinton, invites friends, whom he suspects to have been driving the car that hit his wife, to his yacht for a party.


Clinton arranges an elaborate mystery game that assigns each of the people a secret, and each will be slowly revealed throughout the party. This party game proves to be a twisted investigation.

29. The Wailing (2016)

A mysterious stranger comes to a small village in South Korea. Shortly after the stranger’s arrival, people fall ill and die. Police officer Jong-goo investigates these mysterious deaths, his motivation becoming heightened when his daughter, too, becomes ill.

30. Gosford Park (2001)

Sir William McCordle is a rich aristocrat living in the English countryside with his wife and servants. When he invites some friends and their servants to his estate for a hunting party, we learn that they are not just hunting animals.


Everyone wants something from Sir McCordle, and secrets are leaked in this intimate setting.

31. L.A. Confidential (1997)

After a murder in an L.A. coffee shop three detectives — Ed Exley, the son of the victim; Bud White, who seeks justice at all costs; and Jack Vincennes, who just wants to get ahead — investigate the crime in their distinctive styles.

This film reveals the corruption of the police through these very different characters.


32. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (2011)

Wealthy industrialist, Henrik Vanger, asks disgraced journalist, Mikael Blomkvist, to search for his missing niece as a chance to redeem his reputation.

Lisbeth Salander is a young computer hacker who comes to assist Blomkvist’s investigation. She is stoic and untrusting, but Blomkvist needs her help to get to the bottom of this mystery.

33. Les Diaboliques (1955)

Michel Delassalle is an abusive headmaster at a boarding school. His wife, Christina, and his mistress, Nicole, team up to murder this horrible man. However, their strife is not over after his death, especially when Michel’s body disappears.


34. Scream (1996)

The status quo of this middle-class suburban town is shaken when a masked killer begins stalking the local high schoolers. Teenager Sidney Prescott must figure out who is behind this ghost mask as the body count increases and she fears that she is next.

35. Wind River (2017)

Wildlife officer Cory Lambert discovers the body of a teenage girl on a Native American reservation in Wyoming. FBI agent Jane Banner is called to investigate, but she needs Lambert’s help.


The two soon find themselves in danger as they dig deeper into the investigation.

36. Death On The Nile (1978)

Wealthy heiress, Linnet Ridgeway, meets her demise on a cruise on the Nile River. Luckily, famed detective Hercule Poirot is also a passenger aboard this cruise — yes, he also happened to be at the right place at the right time on the Orient Express.

The mystery thriller gets even more mysterious as several of the suspects begin to get killed off too.


37. Motherless Brooklyn (2018)

Lionel Essrog doesn’t let his Tourette’s syndrome hold him back in his career as a private eye. His next case is the murder of Frank Minna, Essrog’s mentor and friend.

Essrog must maneuver Brooklyn’s seedy clubs and shifty crime bosses to find the truth behind all of the secrets he discovers.

RELATED: 25 Best Alfred Hitchcock Quotes About Life, Entertainment, & Embracing Your Deepest, Darkest Fears


38. We Have Always Lived In The Castle (2018)

Sisters Merricat and Constance live in isolation with their Uncle Julian since they were shook by a family tragedy 6 years ago. Their lives are once again disrupted when their cousin, Charles, pays an unexpected visit.

Holding dark family secrets over their head for leverage over the family fortune, something must be done about Charles.

39. Murder By Death (1976)

Lionel Twain invites five private eyes to his castle for a dinner party. That evening, Twain reveals that he invited them there to solve an unsolvable murder that has not even happened yet.


Whoever can solve the murder wins $1 million. However, the planned victim, Twain’s butler, dies prematurely, and tensions rise.

40. Memento (2000)

Leonard’s search for his wife’s rapist and killer is complicated by his untreatable amnesia. He stumbles through his investigation often forgetting where he is going or what he is doing.

Leonard finds solace and assistance in a former client, Sammy Jankis, who suffers from the same amnesia.


41. Mystic River (2003)

Ex-con Jimmy Marcus’ daughter is murdered, and he turns to his childhood friends for help. Dave was the last person to see the daughter alive. Sean, a detective, is officially on the case.

However, Jimmy still does his own investigating, unable to rest until he finds his daughter’s killer.

42. Rear Window (1954)

Another Hitchcock film, photographer L.B. “Jeff” Jefferies is confined to his New York City apartment after breaking his leg on a shoot. He has nothing to do but stare out his window at the building across the way.


Jeff’s keen, observational photographer’s eye gets him into a mess of trouble when he sees suspicious activity in one of the windows. A woman’s life may be in danger, but is Jeff in over his head?

43. Primal Fear (1996)

Defense attorney Martin Vail does his job more so for fame and money than justice. His current case is the murder of Chicago’s archbishop with an altar boy as a suspect.

As he digs deeper, Vail learns about the unholy matters that the church tries to hide.


44. Gone Girl (2014)

Nick and Amy Dunne appear to be the pinnacle of a happy couple. But, on their 5th anniversary, Amy goes missing. As the search for Amy ensues, the Dunne’s reputation of happiness and perfection is tarnished when Nick becomes a suspect.

45. Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993)

Larry and Carole Lipton are new empty nesters. When Carole hears about their neighbor Lillian’s sudden death, she insists that her husband helps her investigate.


Are they just bored with their son away at college, or is there really foul play to be discovered?

46. Disturbia (2007)

Teenager Kale Brecht is having trouble adjusting after his father was killed in a car accident. An altercation with a teacher at school leads to Kale’s house arrest.

Kale grows suspicious of his neighbor and deems him to be a serial killer. He becomes obsessed with learning the truth.

47. Identity (​2003)

A desert storm in Nevada pushes 10 strangers into shelter at a motel. They start to get killed off one by one. Urgency to identify the murderer grows as the bodies pile up.

48. Bad Times At The El Royale (2018)

The seedy El Royale Hotel is nearly deserted with only one clerk on duty when four strangers check-in one night. Each of them come to the El Royale for specific reasons, and their secrets are slowly revealed as their stays become messier.

49. The Fugitive (1993)

Richard Kimble is on the run after being accused of murdering his wife. Deputy Samuel Gerard is fiercely determined to track down Kimble and put him behind bars. As he flees the authorities, Kimble begins to uncover the truth behind his wife’s death.

50. Clue (1985)

Mr. Boddy blackmails 6 people into attending a dinner party at his mansion. Everyone is a suspect when Mr. Boddy turns up dead — shocking! They must team up to find the killer, but they also can’t trust each other.

51. Last Night in Soho (2021)

An aspiring fashion designer moves to London to pursue her dreams. However, she is able to mysteriously enter the 1960s, where she encounters a dazzling wannabe singer, Sandy.

Though glamorous at first, the visions start becoming darker as she ends up witnessing Sandy's murder. Can she find the killer behind it?

52. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (2022)

This is yet another glorious "Knives Out" mystery with famous private detective Benoit Blanc, starring Daniel Craig. In this mystery, tech billionaire Miles Bron invites his friends for a getaway on his private Greek island. But someone turns up dead over the weekend.

53. Where the Crawdads Sing (2022)

This film is based on the novel of a coming-of-age story of a young girl, Kya, raised in the marshlands of the south in the 1950s. However, things take a dark turn when the town hotshot is found dead. And Kya ends up being the prime suspect in his murder case.

54. See How They Run (2022)

It's the 1950s in London and a movie version of a smash-hit play is on the way, but unfortunately, everything comes to a screeching halt when the body of a crew member is found.

A world-weary inspector and an eager rookie constable are thrown into the puzzling whodunit within the glamorously sordid world of underground theater, investigating the mysterious homicide at their own peril.

55. Amsterdam (2022)

This film follows the lives of three friends who have witnessed a murder. They become prime suspects but, while trying to clear their names, they stumble onto one of the most outrageous plots in American history.

56. Deep Water (2022)

A well-meaning husband who allows his wife to have affairs in order to avoid divorce becomes the prime suspect when his wife's lovers start mysteriously disappearing.

57. The Pale Blue Eye (2022)

A veteran detective named Augustus Landor investigates a series of grisly murders at the United States Military Academy, with help from a young cadet who will eventually go on to become the world-famous author Edgar Allan Poe.

RELATED: 5 Gruesome Unsolved Murders That Armchair Detectives Still Try To Solve Today

Colleen Fogarty is a writer and contributor to YourTango. She covers self-care, astrology, lifestyle, and relationship topics.