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The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops 

Ann Casano
Updated July 13, 2020 925 votes 242 voters 18.2k views 34 items

Is there anything worse than a corrupt cop? We know not to trust hardened criminals. However, we’ve been taught to rely upon the men and women in blue, who have sworn to uphold the law and protect the public. So, when cops turn to the dark side, it seems especially heinous and shocking. These are the best movies about corrupt cops.

With a few exceptions, all of the police officers on this list are despicable individuals, drunk with power. Some of the men on this list are even willing to murder to get what they want. Take Dennis Peck (Richard Gere) from Internal Affairs, he arranges to have his own partner killed. Is there anyone more vile than DEA Agent Stansfield (Gary Oldman) from Léon: The Professional? He’s a monster with no issue whatsoever murdering innocent children.

Harry Callahan (there are a total of five Dirty Harry movies) is not the same kind of bad cop. He’s actually the hero of the movie, the protagonist we’re rooting for to catch the bad guy. However, Callahan (Clint Eastwood) plays by his own rules, he is willing to break or bend any law to catch the villain. Dirty Harry appeals to his very own brand of justice. However, we have to put Callahan on this list, especially because he talks likes this, “I know what you’re thinking: 'Did he fire six shots or only five?' Well, to tell you the truth, in all this excitement, I’ve kinda lost track myself. But being this is a .44 Magnum, the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off, you’ve got to ask yourself one question: 'Do I feel lucky?' Well, do you, punk?”

Make your voice heard on what you think are the best movies about corrupt cops by voting up the bad cop movie or police corruption movies you think are the greatest below.

You'll also find some of these movies on this list of films about police brutality.

Data-driven recommendations based on voting from over 40 million monthly visits to Ranker. Try the free app
list ordered by
1
Training Day is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Eva Mendes, Snoop Dogg, Denzel Washington

Released: 2001

Directed by: Antoine Fuqua

Training Day is a 2001 American thriller film directed by Antoine Fuqua, written by David Ayer, and starring Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke. The story follows two LAPD narcotics officers over ...more

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2
The Departed is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Leonardo DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson, Alec Baldwin

Released: 2006

Directed by: Martin Scorsese

The Departed is a 2006 American crime drama film directed by Martin Scorsese, and a remake of the 2002 Hong Kong film Infernal Affairs. Irish Mob boss Francis "Frank" Costello (Jack ...more

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3
Léon: The Profess... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Natalie Portman, Gary Oldman, Jean Reno

Released: 1994

Directed by: Luc Besson

Léon: The Professional is a 1994 English-language French action thriller film written and directed by Luc Besson. The film stars Jean Reno and Gary Oldman, and features the film debut of ...more

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4
Serpico is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Al Pacino, Judd Hirsch, Abraham Murphy

Released: 1973

Directed by: Sidney Lumet

Serpico is a 1973 American drama film directed by Sidney Lumet and starring Al Pacino. Waldo Salt and Norman Wexler wrote the screenplay, adapting Peter Maas's biography of NYPD officer Frank ...more

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5
Magnum Force is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Clint Eastwood, Suzanne Somers, Hal Holbrook

Released: 1973

Directed by: Ted Post

Magnum Force is a 1973 American action film and the second to feature Clint Eastwood as maverick cop Harry Callahan after the 1971 film Dirty Harry. Ted Post, who also directed Eastwood in the ...more

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6
L.A. Confidential is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Kevin Spacey, Russell Crowe, Kim Basinger

Released: 1997

Directed by: Curtis Hanson

L.A. Confidential is a 1997 neo-noir film based on James Ellroy's 1990 novel of the same title, the third book in his L.A. Quartet series. Like the book, the film tells the story of a group of ...more

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7
Cop Land is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Sylvester Stallone, Robert De Niro, Debbie Harry

Released: 1997

Directed by: James Mangold

Cop Land is a 1997 American drama film written and directed by James Mangold, and starring Sylvester Stallone, Harvey Keitel, Ray Liotta, and Robert De Niro. The supporting cast features Peter ...more

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8
American Gangster is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Denzel Washington, Russell Crowe, Idris Elba

Released: 2007

Directed by: Ridley Scott

American Gangster is a 2007 American biographical crime film directed by Ridley Scott, based on the criminal career of Frank Lucas. An outcast New York City cop (Russell Crowe) is charged with ...more

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9
The Untouchables is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
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Released: 1987

Directed by: Brian De Palma

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10
Bad Lieutenant is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Harvey Keitel, Victor Argo, Paul Calderón

Released: 1992

Directed by: Abel Ferrara

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11
The Sting is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw

Released: 1973

Directed by: George Roy Hill

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12
Gone Baby Gone is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Casey Affleck, Michelle Monaghan, Morgan Freeman

Released: 2007

Directed by: Ben Affleck

Gone Baby Gone is a 2007 American neo-noir mystery thriller film directed by Ben Affleck, based on the 1998 novel by Dennis Lehane. After a young girl goes missing, Boston detectives Patrick ...more

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13
Insomnia is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Al Pacino, Robin Williams, Hilary Swank

Released: 2002

Directed by: Christopher Nolan

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14
Internal Affairs is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Richard Gere, Elijah Wood, Andy Garcia

Released: 1990

Directed by: Mike Figgis

Internal Affairs is a 1990 American crime thriller film set in Los Angeles about the police department's Internal Affairs Division. Directed by Mike Figgis, the film stars Richard Gere as Dennis ...more

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15
Narc is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Busta Rhymes, Ray Liotta, Jason Patric

Released: 2002

Directed by: Joe Carnahan

Narc is a 2002 American thriller film written and directed by Joe Carnahan and starring Ray Liotta and Jason Patric. The plot revolves around the efforts of two police detectives in search. As ...more

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16
Unlawful Entry is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Kurt Russell, Madeleine Stowe, Ray Liotta

Released: 1992

Directed by: Jonathan Kaplan

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17
Black and Blue is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Naomie Harris, Tyrese Gibson, Mike Colter

Released: 2019

Directed by: Deon Taylor

Black and Blue is a 2019 American action thriller film directed by Deon Taylor. Rookie cop, Alicia West (Naomie Harris) captures the murder of a drug dealer by corrupt cops on her bodycam and ...more
18
Sin City is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Jessica Alba, Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke

Released: 2005

Directed by: Quentin Tarantino, Robert Rodriguez, Frank Miller

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19
Mulholland Falls is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
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Released: 1996

Directed by: Lee Tamahori

Mulholland Falls is a 1996 American neo-noir thriller film directed by Lee Tamahori and written by Pete Dexter. It stars Nick Nolte, Jennifer Connelly, Chazz Palminteri, Michael Madsen, Chris ...more

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20
Another 48 Hrs. is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
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Released: 1990

Directed by: Walter Hill

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21
Killerman is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Liam Hemsworth, Emory Cohen, Diane Guerrero

Released: 2019

Directed by: Malik Bader

Killerman is a 2019 action drama film directed by Malik Bader. A New York City money launderer wakes up with millions of dollars in cash and contraband with no memory as to how it got there, he ...more
22
Dark Blue is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Kurt Russell, Brendan Gleeson, Master P

Released: 2002

Directed by: Ron Shelton

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23
Touch of Evil is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Charlton Heston, Orson Welles, Marlene Dietrich

Released: 1958

Directed by: Orson Welles

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24
Point Blank is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Frank Grillo, Anthony Mackie, Marcia Gay Harden

Released: 2019

Directed by: Joe Lynch

Point Blank is a 2019 action thriller directed by Joe Lynch and a remake of the 2010 film of the same name.
25
Bad Lieutenant: Port of ... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies About Corrupt Cops
Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes, Val Kilmer

Released: 2009

Directed by: Werner Herzog

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