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The Best Movies About Gangs 

Ranker Film
Originally by
Updated January 24, 2020 88.1k votes 13.4k voters 542.7k views 52 items

List Rules Movies must deal with gangs and gangland violence.

Here is the list of the best gang movies of all time. These are films that focus on gangs, life as a gang member, and the conflicts between rival street gangs. This genre can also include hood movies, heist movies, and various other sub-genres. Unlike hood movies, however, gang films can be much more stylized as well as take place during various decades and points in time. Life on the street can be difficult, to say the least. The conflict spawned be such an environment can make for great drama and storytelling.

Including Boyz n the Hood and The Warriors, this list of the best gang movies has all of your favorite movies about growing up gangsters, fighting over territories, and protecting street reputations. 

What are the top street gang movies of all time? The movies on this list are some of the best thug-life films anywhere, but if you believe we've missed one please feel free to add it to the list yourself.

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1
American History X is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
wiabux added Edward Norton, Edward Furlong, Beverly DAngelo

Released: 1998

Directed by: Tony Kaye

American History X is a 1998 American drama film directed by Tony Kaye and written by David McKenna. It stars Edward Norton and Edward Furlong, and co-stars Fairuza Balk, Stacy Keach, Elliott ...more

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2
Boyz n the Hood is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Ice Cube, Angela Bassett, Cuba Gooding Jr.

Released: 1991

Directed by: John Singleton

Boyz n the Hood is a 1991 American hood drama film directed by John Singleton. Three young men weave in and out of violence, relationships, and racial issues in the Crenshaw ghetto of Los

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3
Menace II Society is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Samuel L. Jackson, Jada Pinkett Smith, Charles S. Dutton

Released: 1993

Directed by: Albert Hughes, Allen Hughes

Menace II Society is a 1993 drama/hood film and the directorial debut of twin brothers Allen and Albert Hughes. Set in South Central Los Angeles, the film follows the life of a hoodlum named ...more

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4
Gangs of New York is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Shamrock4444 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

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5
Blood In, Blood Out is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
christopher-ferrell added Damian Chapa, Jesse Borrego, Benjamin Bratt

Released: 1993

Directed by: Taylor Hackford

Blood In Blood Out (a.k.a. Bound by Honor) is a 1993 American crime-drama film directed by Taylor Hackford. The lives of three Chicano relatives intertwine from 1972 to 1984.
6
Colors is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Sean Penn, Robert Duvall, Don Cheadle

Released: 1988

Directed by: Dennis Hopper

Colors is a 1988 American police procedural action film starring Sean Penn and Robert Duvall, and directed by Dennis Hopper. The film takes place in the gang ridden neighborhoods of South ...more

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7
The Outsiders is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
bojanthebest added Tom Cruise, Nicolas Cage, Diane Lane

Released: 1983

Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola

The Outsiders is a 1983 American drama film directed by Francis Ford Coppola, an adaptation of the novel of the same name by S. E. Hinton. The film was released on March 25, 1983. Jo Ellen ...more

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8
American Me is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Edward James Olmos, William Forsythe, Cary-Hiroyuki Tagawa

Released: 1992

Directed by: Edward James Olmos

American Me is a 1992 biographical drama film produced and directed by Edward James Olmos, his first film as a director, and written by Floyd Mutrux and Desmond Nakano. Olmos also stars as the ...more

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9
The Warriors is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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

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10
A Bronx Tale is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
wiabux added Robert De Niro, Joe Pesci, Chazz Palminteri

Released: 1993

Directed by: Robert De Niro

A Bronx Tale is a 1993 American drama film set in the Bronx during the turbulent era of the 1960s. It was the directorial debut of Robert De Niro that follows a young Italian-American teenager ...more

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11
End of Watch is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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Released: 2012

Directed by: David Ayer

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12
New Jack City is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
bojanthebest added Chris Rock, Ice-T, Judd Nelson

Released: 1991

Directed by: Mario Van Peebles

New Jack City is a 1991 American action crime film directed by Mario Van Peebles. In his rise to power, crime lord Nino Brown (Wesley Snipes) stops at nothing to profit off the New York City ...more

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13
Four Brothers is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
CapoAssKickerMikey95 added Sofía Vergara, Mark Wahlberg, Taraji P. Henson

Released: 2005

Directed by: John Singleton

Four Brothers is a 2005 American action film directed by John Singleton. The movie stars Mark Wahlberg, Tyrese Gibson, Andre Benjamin, and Garrett Hedlund. The film was shot in Detroit, Michigan ...more

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14
Friday is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Ice Cube, Meagan Good, Nia Long

Released: 1995

Directed by: F. Gary Gray

Friday is a 1995 American stoner buddy comedy film directed by F. Gary Gray in his directorial debut, and starring Ice Cube, Chris Tucker, Nia Long, Bernie Mac, Tiny 'Zeus' Lister Jr, and John ...more

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15
Juice is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
CapoAssKickerMikey95 added Tupac Shakur, Samuel L. Jackson, Queen Latifah

Released: 1992

Directed by: Ernest R. Dickerson

Juice is a 1992 American drama thriller directed by Ernest R. Dickerson, written by Ernest R. Dickerson and Gerard Brown. It stars rapper Tupac Shakur and Omar Epps. Additional cast members ...more

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16
City of God is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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Released: 2002

Directed by: Fernando Meirelles

City of God is a 2002 Brazilian crime drama film directed by Fernando Meirelles and co-directed by Kátia Lund, released in its home country in 2002 and worldwide in 2003. The story was ...more

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17
South Central is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Glenn Plummer, Carl Lumbly, Byron Minns

Released: 1992

Directed by: Stephen Milburn Anderson

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18
Green Street is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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Released: 2005

Directed by: Lexi Alexander

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19
Dead Presidents is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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Released: 1995

Directed by: Albert Hughes, Allen Hughes

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20
One Eight Seven is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Samuel L. Jackson, Method Man, Clifton Collins

Released: 1997

Directed by: Kevin Reynolds

One Eight Seven is a 1997 drama/crime/thriller film directed by Kevin Reynolds. It was the first top-billed starring role for Samuel L. Jackson, who plays a Los Angeles teacher caught with gang ...more

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21
West Side Story is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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

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22
The Wanderers is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Karen Allen, Olympia Dukakis, Ken Wahl

Released: 1979

Directed by: Philip Kaufman

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23
Don't Be a Menace to Sou... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
Vivica A. Fox, Bernie Mac, Damon Wayans

Released: 1996

Directed by: Paris Barclay

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24
Romper Stomper is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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Released: 1992

Directed by: Geoffrey Wright

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25
Assault on Precinct 13 ... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies About Gangs
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Released: 1976

Directed by: John Carpenter

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