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The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked 

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Updated October 18, 2019 3.8k votes 514 voters 26.3k views 46 items

List Rules Your favorite future noir and tech noir films, regardless of box office or critic rating.

The best tech noir and future noir movies bring the classic film noir feel into the future with science fiction backdrops and characters. Sure, they may not be filmed in black and white, but their stories very much embody film noir. So which are the best techno noir and future noir movies of all time? See what fans of films think below.

What defines the future noir genre? One way to define it is as a combination of film noir storytelling with a science fiction setting. However, that definition can be problematic in itself because there is some disagreement on what film noir encapsulates. Generally, the best future noir films have to do with a crime or mystery that the hero (who sometimes but not always is a detective) must solve.

Some examples of future noir or tech noir include Gattaca and Blade Runner. In fact, Blade Runner is probably the strongest example of a tech noir film, as it features both a detective and a femme fatale. A more recent tech noir film is I, Robot, which stars Will Smith as a police office that has to get to the bottom of a murder mystery.

So now that we’re all on the same page as to what makes a science fiction movie a future noir or tech noir, it’s time to see which are actually the best ones. Vote for your favorite future noir films below or add any you feel are missing. If you’re looking to see where a particular future noir film is ranked, you can use the search box at the top of the list. Otherwise, let’s solve the mystery of which is the best future noir movie ever!

All sorts of directors have taken on Future noir movies. Examples include Mamoru Oshii, Alejandro Amenábar, and Colin Budds.

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1
Blade Runner is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
Harrison Ford, Daryl Hannah, Sean Young

Released: 1982

Directed by: Ridley Scott

Blade Runner is a 1982 American neo-noir dystopian science fiction film directed by Ridley Scott and starring Harrison Ford, Rutger Hauer, Sean Young, and Edward James Olmos. The screenplay, ...more

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Uma Thurman, Jude Law, Ethan Hawke

Released: 1997

Directed by: Andrew Niccol

Gattaca is a 1997 American science fiction film written and directed by Andrew Niccol. It stars Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman, with Jude Law, Loren Dean, Ernest Borgnine, Gore Vidal, and Alan ...more

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Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside

Released: 1990

Directed by: Paul Verhoeven

Total Recall is a 1990 American science fiction action film directed by Paul Verhoeven. In 2084, a construction worker, Douglas Quaid (Arnold Schwarzenegger), suddenly finds himself embroiled in ...more

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Robert De Niro, Bob Hoskins, Ian Holm

Released: 1985

Directed by: Terry Gilliam

Brazil is a 1985 British film directed by Terry Gilliam and written by Gilliam, Charles McKeown, and Tom Stoppard. British National Cinema by Sarah Street describes the film as a ...more

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5
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Brad Pitt, Bruce Willis, Christopher Plummer

Released: 1995

Directed by: Terry Gilliam

12 Monkeys, also known as Twelve Monkeys, is a 1995 American science fiction film directed by Terry Gilliam, inspired by Chris Marker's 1962 short film La Jetée, and starring Bruce ...more

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6
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Maaya Sakamoto, Akio Ōtsuka, Kōichi Yamadera

Released: 1995

Directed by: Mamoru Oshii

Ghost in the Shell is a 1995 anime science fiction film based on manga of the same title by Masamune Shirow. The film was written by Kazunori Itō, directed by Mamoru Oshii, animated by ...more

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7
Children of Men is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
Julianne Moore, Clive Owen, Michael Caine

Released: 2006

Directed by: Alfonso Cuarón

Children of Men is a 2006 science fiction thriller film directed and co-written by Alfonso Cuarón. The screenplay, based on P. D. James's 1992 novel of the same name, was credited to five ...more

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8
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Cameron Diaz, Tom Cruise, Colin Farrell

Released: 2002

Directed by: Steven Spielberg

Minority Report is a 2002 American neo-noir science fiction mystery-thriller film directed by Steven Spielberg and loosely based on the short story of the same name by Philip K. Dick. It is set ...more

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Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bill Paxton, Linda Hamilton

Released: 1984

Directed by: James Cameron

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10
Dark City is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
Jennifer Connelly, Kiefer Sutherland, Melissa George

Released: 1998

Directed by: Alex Proyas

Dark City is a 1998 neo-noir science fiction film directed by Alex Proyas. The screenplay was written by Proyas, Lem Dobbs and David S. Goyer. The film stars Rufus Sewell, Kiefer Sutherland, ...more

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11
Alien is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
Sigourney Weaver, John Hurt, Ian Holm

Released: 1979

Directed by: Ridley Scott

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Robert Downey Jr., Keanu Reeves, Winona Ryder

Released: 2006

Directed by: Richard Linklater

A Scanner Darkly is a 2006 American animated science fiction thriller film directed by Richard Linklater based on the novel of the same name by Philip K. Dick. The film tells the story of ...more

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13
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Sigourney Weaver, Bill Paxton, Michael Biehn

Released: 1986

Directed by: James Cameron

Aliens is a 1986 American science-fiction action horror film written and directed by James Cameron, produced by his then-wife Gale Anne Hurd, and starring Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn, Michael ...more

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14
Alita: Battle Angel is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
dontyouwish added Rosa Salazar, Christoph Waltz, Jennifer Connelly

Released: 2019

Directed by: Robert Rodriguez

Alita: Battle Angel is a 2019 American science fiction action film directed by Robert Rodriguez, based on the manga by Yukito Kishiro. After being revived by Dr. Dyson Ido (Christoph Waltz), ...more

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Natalie Portman, John Hurt, Hugo Weaving

Released: 2005

Directed by: James McTeigue

V for Vendetta is a 2006 American political thriller film directed by James McTeigue and written by the Wachowski Brothers, based on the 1988 Vertigo graphic novel of the same name by Alan Moore ...more

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Ralph Fiennes, Angela Bassett, Juliette Lewis

Released: 1995

Directed by: Kathryn Bigelow

Strange Days is a 1995 American science fiction action thriller film directed by Kathryn Bigelow. It stars Ralph Fiennes, Angela Bassett, Juliette Lewis, Tom Sizemore, Vincent D'Onofrio, and ...more

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17
Terminator 2: Judgment D... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Edward Furlong, Linda Hamilton

Released: 1991

Directed by: James Cameron

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18
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Jamie Lee Curtis, Kurt Russell, Ernest Borgnine

Released: 1981

Directed by: John Carpenter

Escape from New York is a 1981 American science fiction action film co-written, co-scored, and directed by John Carpenter. The film is set in a then near-future 1997 in a distopian United States ...more

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19
Robocop is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Future Noir & Tech Noir Movies, Ranked
Robocop Peter Weller, Nancy Allen, Dan O'Herlihy

Released: 1987

Directed by: Paul Verhoeven

20
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Anna Karina, Jean Piere Leaud, Akim Tamiroff

Released: 1965

Directed by: Jean-Luc Godard

Alphaville: une étrange aventure de Lemmy Caution is a 1965 black-and-white French science fiction film noir directed by Jean-Luc Godard. It stars Eddie Constantine, Anna Karina, Howard ...more
21
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Keanu Reeves, Hugo Weaving, Carrie-Anne Moss

Released: 1999

Directed by: Andy Wachowski, Lana Wachowski

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Christian Bale, Sean Bean, Taye Diggs

Released: 2002

Directed by: Kurt Wimmer

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Gretchen Mol, Vincent D'Onofrio, Shiri Appleby

Released: 1999

Directed by: Josef Rusnak

The Thirteenth Floor is a 1999 film directed by Josef Rusnak.

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Jude Law, Willem Dafoe, Jennifer Jason Leigh

Released: 1999

Directed by: David Cronenberg

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Ron Perlman, Jean-Louis Trintignant, Dominique Pinon

Released: 1995

Directed by: Marc Caro, Jean-Pierre Jeunet

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