Good Gang Movies

Monday, March 22, 2010 at 10:08 am

Good gang movies make the perfect evening of entertainment for fans of mobsters and chronic-smoking gangstaz. And whether they feature Uzi-wielding hoods or curb-stomping neo-Nazis, you can bet that most of these flicks are also filled with all-important social commentary. So take a break from bustin’ caps in people’s asses and enjoy some good gang movies, courtesy of Only Good Movies.

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Boyz n the Hood (1991) – John Singleton became the youngest person ever nominated for a Best Director Oscar with this tale of life in South Central Los Angeles. Cuba Gooding Jr. plays Tre Styles, a level-headed young man with a bright future…if he can survive the crime that plagues his neighborhood. Ice Cube is Doughboy, a veteran teen criminal already locked into a neverending cycle of violence.

Gran Torino (2008) – Clint Eastwood stars in and directs this tale of a Korean war veteran appalled by all the ethnic types living in his once-white neighborhood. But after inadvertently helping his teenage Hmong neighbor, Walt Kowalski (Eastwood) suddenly finds himself hailed as a local hero. Being a hero has its price, however, and Walt must figure out what to do about the local gang members plaguing the more peace-loving residents.

The Warriors (1979) – Now known as a cult film with a significant following, The Warriors tells the story of a New York gang framed for the murder of the city’s most powerful criminal leader. Caught deep in enemy territory, they must try to reach the safety of Coney Island while dodging cops and rival gangs. Filled with colorful criminal bands such as Satan’s Mothers, the Baseball Furies, and the Savage Huns, the film also includes the familiar faces of Michael Beck, James Remar and David Patrick Kelly.

Training Day (2001) – Denzel Washington won a Best Actor Oscar for portraying Alonzo Harris, a vicious LAPD narcotics detective conducting an on-the-job interview with the career-minded Jake Hoyt (Ethan Hawke). But all is not as it seems in this world of gangs, drugs, and unrelenting violence.

Sin Nombre (2009) – As a Honduran family tries to reach the United States via the top of a train traveling through Mexico, youthful gang members rob passengers and contemplate far worse. When the teenage Sayra (Paulina Gaitan) is saved by Casper (Edgar Flores), the young woman begins to develop a close bond with the cynical gangster.

Romeo + Juliet (1996) – Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes appear as William Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers in this modern retelling of the ultimate love story. The Capulets and the Montagues are now rival business empires, and director Baz Luhrmann makes sure to mix in plenty of stylized violence with the original dialogue from the Bard. Co-starring Paul Rudd, Jaime Kennedy, Paul Sorvino, John Leguizamo and Brian Dennehy.

American History X (1998) – Edward Norton gets all muscled up for his role as Derek Vinyard, a young man drawn into the neo-Nazi movement after his firefighter father was killed on the job by a black drug dealer. As Derek curb stomps his way into Chino and begins to have his eyes opened, his younger brother (Edward Furlong) begins to head down the same destructive path.

Rumble Fish (1983) – No list of good gang movies would be complete without this brotherly tale of Rusty James (Matt Dillon), an aspiring tough guy, and The Motorcycle Boy (Mickey Rourke), his troubled sibling who was once a legendary gang leader. Directed by Francis Ford Coppola, the film co-stars Diane Lane, Nicolas Cage, Dennis Hopper, Chris Penn, Laurence Fishburne and Vincent Spano.

Original Gangstas (1996) – When a street gang murders a local boy in Gary, Indiana, a group of former gang members resolve to take out the trash (the human trash, that is). Fans of the blaxploitation genre will be delighted, as the “former gang members” include such stars as Fred Williamson, Pam Grier, and Jim Brown.

44 Inch Chest (2010) – Ray Winstone plays Colin Diamond, a gangster and car salesman who learns that his wife is cheating on him. With the encouragement of his friends, including Ian McShane as a gay gambler with all the right moves, Colin kidnaps his wife’s lover. But as the vengeance leveled against the young man begins to intensify, Ray searches for both internal and external sources to alleviate his growing guilt.

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This entry was posted on Monday, March 22nd, 2010 at 10:08 am and is filed under Good Movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Good Gang Movies”

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March 27, 2010


Great list, I’ll watch some of these.

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