The Best Black and White Movies Ever Made Films
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The Best Black and White Movies Ever Made

List Criteria: Top monochrome BW films

List of the best black and white movies ever made, as listed by movie critics and film fans from all over the world. From the time that movies were first being made until the late '60s, black and white was the exclusive color of movies, since that was the only filming technology available. Although movies are now almost all shot in color, the old black and white movies feel classic, like there’s a higher quality to their storytelling.

 

Even though color technology has existed for shooting movies since the late 1960s, some filmmakers choose to shoot their movies in black and white for either budget, aesthetical, or storytelling purposes. Movies like Schindler’s List, Paper Moon, and The Artist were all made when color was available but because the black and white makes viewers feel transported to a former time period. For some movies, like The Night of the Living Dead and Raging Bull, the lack of color makes the horror and violence seem even more frightening.

 

What are the best black and white movies of all time? This list features movies made in the '20s to those made in the last few years, covering all types of genres. These movies are often ranked among the best of the best.

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  1. 1
    + 70
    - 14
    ) open buy at  
  2. 2
    + 54
    - 21

    the people's #1
    1942

    ) open buy at  
  3. 3
    + 53
    - 11

    most listed
    1957

    ) open buy at  
  4. 4
    + 58
    - 7

    ranked low on reranks
    1960

    ) open buy at  
  5. 5
    + 55
    - 14
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  6. 6
    + 27
    - 5
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  7. 7
    + 43
    - 6
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  8. 8
    + 31
    - 25

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1941

    ) open buy at  
  9. 9
    + 32
    - 12
    ) open buy at  
  10. 10
    + 51
    - 14

    ranked low on reranks
    1946

    ) open buy at  
  11. 11
    + 28
    - 13
    ) open buy at  
  12. 12
    + 17
    - 9
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  13. 13
    + 23
    - 23

    often listed
    1949

    ) open buy at  
  14. 14
    + 25
    - 13

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1946

    ) open buy at  
  15. 15
    + 29
    - 4

    ranked low on reranks
    1958

    ) open buy at  
  16. 16
    + 32
    - 4

    added by srjthnk
    1980

    ) open buy at  
  17. 17
    + 26
    - 2

    ranked low on reranks & added by laustcawz
    1935

    ) open buy at  
  18. 18
    + 45
    - 8
    ) open buy at  
  19. 19
    + 24
    - 2

    added by mainpleine
    1933

    ) open buy at  
  20. 20
    + 33
    - 5

    added by laustcawz
    1974

    ) open buy at  
  21. 21
    + 20
    - 14
    ) open buy at  
  22. 22
    + 21
    - 0

    ranked low on reranks & added by soxcat
    1946

    ) open buy at  
  23. 23
    + 38
    - 7
    ) open buy at  
  24. 24
    + 35
    - 6
    ) open buy at  
  25. 25
    + 26
    - 11
    ) open buy at  
  26. 26
    + 31
    - 11
    ) open buy at  
  27. 27
    + 27
    - 3

    ranked low on reranks & added by 2probb
    1946

    ) open buy at  
  28. 28
    + 22
    - 9

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1946

    ) open buy at  
  29. 29
    + 23
    - 16

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1954

    ) open buy at  
  30. 30
    + 19
    - 0

    ranked low on reranks & added by jobill
    1939

    ) open buy at  
  31. 31
    + 19
    - 0

    ranked low on reranks & added by soxcat
    1954

    ) open buy at  
  32. 32
    + 20
    - 1

    ranked high on reranks & added by soxcat
    1939

    ) open buy at  
  33. 33
    + 22
    - 1

    ranked high on reranks & added by soxcat
    1961

    ) open buy at  
  34. 34
    + 27
    - 8

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1940

    ) open buy at  
  35. 35
    + 17
    - 0

    added by soxcat
    1954

    ) open buy at  
  36. 36
    + 17
    - 0

    ranked low on reranks & added by soxcat
    1957

    ) open buy at  
  37. 37
    + 17
    - 0

    added by but chickens double d
    1931

    ) open buy at  
  38. 38
    + 17
    - 6

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1925

    ) open buy at  
  39. 39
    + 19
    - 1

    added by soxcat
    1958

    ) open buy at  
  40. 40
    + 15
    - 7
    ) open buy at  
  41. 41
    + 16
    - 0

    ranked low on reranks & added by but chickens double d
    1931

    ) open buy at  
  42. 42
    + 19
    - 20
    ) open buy at  
  43. 43
    + 10
    - 2

    added by mainpleine
    1928

    ) open buy at  
  44. 44
    + 11
    - 12
    ) open buy at  
  45. 45
    + 1
    - 0

    added by but chickens double d
    1943

    ) open buy at  
  46. 46
    + 15
    - 10
    ) open buy at  
  47. 47
    + 18
    - 20

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1952

    ) open buy at  
  48. 48
    + 24
    - 1

    ranked low on reranks & added by soxcat
    1944

    ) open buy at  
  49. 49
    + 7
    - 12

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    1979

    ) open buy at  
  50. 50
    + 13
    - 0

    ranked low on reranks & added by but chickens double d
    1949

    ) open buy at  
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