Watchworthy

The Best New York Movies 

Ranker Film
Updated December 12, 2019 1.6k votes 157 voters 7.4k views 101 items

List Rules Movies about or set in New York.

The Statue of Liberty, Times Square, crowded streets, Chinatown, multi-million dollar townhomes, Wall Street, the World Trade Center, the September 11th bombing, Queens, Central Park – these are the things that come to mind when we talk about New York. This third most populous U.S. state is so popular, it is the setting for many movies and films. There are many popular films about New York City, aka The Big Apple.

But which of those films about New York are the best? Since New York, and especially New York City is home to some of the most iconic structures of the United States it only makes sense that movies like King Kong, Shadows, and Do the Right Thing all feature this famous place. Whether you feel like an NYC comedy, an New York action flick, a classic film, or a tear-jerker drama, there's certainly something on this list for you!

This list has the best movies about New York including: Wall Street, Manhattan, Rosemary’s Baby, Dog Day Afternoon, Taxi Driver, Sweet Smell of Success, The French Connection, Ghostbusters, Saturday Night Fever, On the Town, and Escape from New York.

Vote up your favorite New York City film or add the one you love if it is not already on the list.

Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
list ordered by
1
Ranker Video
clash1977 added Al Pacino, Marlon Brando, Robert Duvall

Released: 1972

Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola

The Godfather is a 1972 American crime film directed by Francis Ford Coppola, based on the novel by Mario Puzo. The aging patriarch (Marlon Brando) of an organized crime dynasty transfers ...more

More The Godfather 

20 Fun Facts About the Godfather Trilogy #6 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Bookslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

2
Goodfellas is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best New York Movies
Robert De Niro, Samuel L. Jackson, Joe Pesci

Released: 1990

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Goodfellas is a 1990 American crime film directed by Martin Scorsese. It is a film adaptation of the 1986 non-fiction book Wiseguy by Nicholas Pileggi, who co-wrote the screenplay with Scorsese. ...more

More Goodfellas 

15 Behind-The-Scenes Stories From The Making Of 'Goodfellas' #21 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Bookslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

3
Taxi Driver is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best New York Movies
Robert De Niro, Jodie Foster, Martin Scorsese

Released: 1976

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Taxi Driver is a 1976 American neo-noir psychological thriller film directed by Martin Scorsese and written by Paul Schrader. Set in New York City soon after the end of the Vietnam War, the film ...more

More Taxi Driver 

12 Behind-The-Scenes Stories From 'Taxi Driver' That Are As Wild As The Film Itself #29 of 253 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #684 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

4
Ranker Video
Bill Murray, Sigourney Weaver, Dan Aykroyd

Released: 1984

Directed by: Ivan Reitman

Ghostbusters is a 1984 American sci-fi-fantasy comedy film, directed and produced by Ivan Reitman and written by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis. The film stars Bill Murray, Aykroyd, and Ramis as ...more

More Ghostbusters 

Behind The Scenes Secrets From 'Ghostbusters' Most People Have Never Heard #2 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetime #20 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked

5
The Godfather Part II is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best New York Movies
clash1977 added Al Pacino, Robert De Niro, Robert Duvall

Released: 1974

Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola

The Godfather Part II is a 1974 American epic crime film produced and directed by Francis Ford Coppola from a screenplay co-written with Mario Puzo, starring Al Pacino and Robert De Niro. ...more

More The Godfather Part II 

#17 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Books #962 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

6
Ranker Video
Mercedes Ruehl, Robert Townsend, James Remar

Released: 1979

Directed by: Walter Hill

The Warriors is a 1979 American cult thriller film directed by Walter Hill and based on Sol Yurick's 1965 novel of the same name. Like the novel, the film borrows elements from the Anabasis by ...more

More The Warriors 

#208 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Books #747 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movieslisted on Movies Set in Brooklyn

7
Ranker Video
John Travolta, Fran Drescher, Denny Dillon

Released: 1977

Directed by: John Badham

Saturday Night Fever is a 1977 American drama film directed by John Badham. It stars John Travolta as Tony Manero, a working-class young man who spends his weekends dancing and drinking at a ...more

More Saturday Night Fever 

The Most Memorable Quotes From 'Saturday Night Fever' #24 of 210 The Best Movies About Musiclisted on Movies Set in Brooklyn

8
Ranker Video
Gene Hackman, Roy Scheider, Fernando Rey

Released: 1971

Directed by: William Friedkin

The French Connection is a 1971 American dramatic thriller film directed by William Friedkin and produced by Philip D'Antoni. It stars Gene Hackman, Fernando Rey, and Roy Scheider. The film was ...more

More The French Connection 

#94 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Books #23 of 591 The Best '70s Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

9
Ranker Video
Al Pacino, Carol Kane, Charles Durning

Released: 1975

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

Dog Day Afternoon is a 1975 American drama film directed by Sidney Lumet, written by Frank Pierson, and produced by Martin Bregman and Martin Elfand. The film stars Al Pacino, John Cazale, ...more

More Dog Day Afternoon 

#1,377 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #25 of 591 The Best '70s Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

10
Ranker Video
Robert De Niro, Martin Scorsese, Harvey Keitel

Released: 1973

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Mean Streets is a 1973 film directed by Martin Scorsese and co-written by Scorsese and Mardik Martin. The film stars Harvey Keitel and Robert De Niro. It was released by Warner Bros. on October ...more

More Mean Streets 

#23 of 114 The Best Mafia Films #58 of 591 The Best '70s Movies #5 of 65 Every Movie Coming To Netflix In July 2020

11
Gangs of New York is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best New York Movies
clash1977 added Cameron Diaz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Liam Neeson

Released: 2002

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

Gangs of New York is a 2002 American fictionalized historical drama film set in the mid-19th century in the Five Points district of Lower Manhattan in 1863. The film was directed by Martin ...more

More Gangs of New York 

#81 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Books #673 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #154 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Made

12
Ranker Video
Samuel L. Jackson, Martin Lawrence, Spike Lee

Released: 1989

Directed by: Spike Lee

Do the Right Thing is a 1989 American comedy-drama hood film produced, written, and directed by Spike Lee, who also played the part of Mookie in the film. Other members of the cast include Danny ...more

More Do the Right Thing 

#28 of 729 The Best Black Movies Ever Made, Ranked #308 of 349 'Old' Movies Every Young Person Needs To Watch In Their Lifetimelisted on Movies Set in Brooklyn

13
Ranker Video
Natalie Wood, Rita Moreno, John Astin

Released: 1961

Directed by: Jerome Robbins, Robert Wise

West Side Story is a 1961 American romantic musical drama film directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins. The film is an adaptation of the 1957 Broadway musical of the same name, which in turn ...more

More West Side Story 

The Behind-The-Scenes Of 'West Side Story' Was Plagued With More Hatred Than The Movie Itself #395 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movieslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

14
Ranker Video
Jennifer Connelly, Robert De Niro, James Woods

Released: 1984

Directed by: Sergio Leone

Once Upon a Time in America is a 1984 Italian epic drama film co-written and directed by Sergio Leone and starring Robert De Niro and James Woods. It chronicles the lives of Jewish ghetto youths ...more

More Once Upon a Time in America 

All The Real-Life Inspirations For Leonardo DiCaprio’s Character In ‘Once Upon A Time In Hollywood' #325 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Rankedlisted on Movies Set in Brooklyn

15
Ranker Video
Meryl Streep, Woody Allen, Diane Keaton

Released: 1979

Directed by: Woody Allen

Manhattan is a 1979 American romantic comedy-drama film directed by Woody Allen and produced by Charles H. Joffe. The screenplay was written by Allen and Marshall Brickman. Allen co-stars as a ...more

More Manhattan 

#84 of 591 The Best '70s Movies #931 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #418 of 1,211 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

16
Ranker Video
Charlie Sheen, Michael Douglas, Martin Sheen

Released: 1987

Directed by: Oliver Stone

Wall Street is a 1987 American drama film, directed and co-written by Oliver Stone, which stars Michael Douglas, Charlie Sheen, Daryl Hannah and Martin Sheen. The film tells the story of Bud ...more

More Wall Street 

#185 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked #5 of 41 The Greatest Movies About Making Moneylisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

17
Ranker Video
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

More Escape from New York 

#88 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked #382 of 581 The Greatest Film Scores of All Time #20 of 161 The Best Dystopian And Near Future Movies

18
Ranker Video
Mia Farrow, Tony Curtis, John Cassavetes

Released: 1968

Directed by: Roman Polanski

Rosemary's Baby is a 1968 American psychological horror film written and directed by Roman Polanski, based on the bestselling 1967 novel of the same name by Ira Levin. The cast includes Mia ...more

More Rosemary's Baby 

All The Spooky Evidence That Rosemary’s Baby Is, In Fact, A Cursed Movie #88 of 253 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Timelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

19
Ranker Video
Jerry Stiller, Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw

Released: 1974

Directed by: Joseph Sargent

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three is a 1974 American thriller film directed by Joseph Sargent, produced by Edgar J. Scherick, and starring Walter Matthau, Robert Shaw, Martin Balsam and ...more

More The Taking of Pelham One Two Three 

#1,407 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #85 of 591 The Best '70s Movies #70 of 94 Best Kidnapping Movies & Hostage Movies of All Time, Ranked

20
On the Waterfront is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best New York Movies
Marlon Brando, Eva Marie Saint, Rod Steiger

Released: 1954

Directed by: Elia Kazan

On the Waterfront is a 1954 American drama film about union violence and corruption amongst longshoremen. The film was directed by Elia Kazan and written by Budd Schulberg. It stars Marlon ...more

More On the Waterfront 

#827 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #25 of 114 The Best Mafia Filmslisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

21
Ranker Video
Audrey Hepburn, Mickey Rooney, Mel Blanc

Released: 1961

Directed by: Blake Edwards

Breakfast at Tiffany's is a 1961 American romantic comedy film starring Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard, and featuring Patricia Neal, Buddy Ebsen, Martin Balsam, and Mickey Rooney. The film ...more

More Breakfast at Tiffany's 

#505 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #44 of 802 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Madelisted on Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

22
Ranker Video
Kiki Layne, Stephan James, Colman Domingo

Released: 2018

Directed by: Barry Jenkins

If Beale Street Could Talk is a 2018 American drama film directed by Barry Jenkins, based on the novel by James Baldwin. A woman in Harlem (Kiki Layne) desperately scrambles to prove her ...more
23
Ranker Video
Tom Islava added Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau, Herb Edelman

Released: 1968

Directed by: Gene Saks

The Odd Couple is a 1968 American black comedy film written by Neil Simon, based on his play The Odd Couple, directed by Gene Saks, and starring Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau. It is the story ...more

More The Odd Couple 

#1,032 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #362 of 802 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Made #75 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films

24
Ranker Video
Martin Scorsese, Teri Garr, Catherine O'Hara

Released: 1985

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

After Hours is a 1985 American black comedy film directed by Martin Scorsese, written by Joseph Minion, and starring an ensemble cast, including Rosanna Arquette, Griffin Dunne, Linda ...more

More After Hours 

#524 of 571 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked #798 of 1,027 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #567 of 1,211 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time

25
The Wolf of Wall Street ... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best New York Movies
MattGreene1 added Leonardo DiCaprio, Matthew McConaughey, Margot Robbie

Released: 2013

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

The Wolf of Wall Street is a 2013 American biographical black comedy film directed by Martin Scorsese, based on the memoir by Jordan Belfort. An ambitious stockbroker (Leonardo DiCaprio) tells ...more

More The Wolf of Wall Street 

#187 of 367 The Best Movies Based On Books #769 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #54 of 140 The Most Awkward Movies to Watch with Your Parents