Best Crime Movies of 1997

1.

L.A. Confidential

6.6

Three detectives in the corrupt and brutal L.A. police force of the 1950s use differing methods to uncover a conspiracy behind the shotgun slayings of the patrons at an all-night diner.

Starring: Kevin Spacey, Guy Pearce, Danny DeVito, James Cromwell, Kim Basinger
Directed by: Curtis Hanson
Release date: 1997-09-19
2.

Donnie Brasco

6.3

An FBI undercover agent infilitrates the mob and finds himself identifying more with the mafia life at the expense of his regular one.

Starring: Johnny Depp, Al Pacino, Michael Madsen, Bruno Kirby, James Russo
Directed by: Mike Newell
Release date: 1997-02-27
3.

Jackie Brown

6.1

Jackie Brown is a flight attendant who gets caught in the middle of smuggling cash into the country for her gunrunner boss. When the cops try to use Jackie to get to her boss, she hatches a plan—with help from a bail bondsman—to keep the money for herself. Based on Elmore Leonard's novel “Rum Punch”.

Starring: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Bridget Fonda, Michael Keaton
Directed by: Quentin Tarantino
Release date: 1997-12-24
4.

Face/Off

6.0

An antiterrorism agent goes under the knife to acquire the likeness of a terrorist and gather details about a bombing plot. When the terrorist escapes custody, he undergoes surgery to look like the agent so he can get close to the agent's family.

Starring: John Travolta, Nicolas Cage, Joan Allen, Alessandro Nivola, Gina Gershon
Directed by: John Woo
Release date: 1997-06-27
5.

Con Air

5.6

When the government puts all its rotten criminal eggs in one airborne basket, it's asking for trouble. Before you can say, "Pass the barf bag," the crooks control the plane, led by creepy Cyrus "The Virus" Grissom. Watching his every move is the just-released Cameron Poe, who'd rather reunite with his family.

Starring: Nicolas Cage, John Cusack, John Malkovich, Ving Rhames, Nick Chinlund
Directed by: Simon West
Release date: 1997-06-01
6.

Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery

5.5

As a swingin' fashion photographer by day and a groovy British superagent by night, Austin Powers is the '60s' most shagadelic spy, baby! But can he stop megalomaniac Dr. Evil after the bald villain freezes himself and unthaws in the '90s? With the help of sexy sidekick Vanessa Kensington, he just might.

Starring: Mike Myers, Elizabeth Hurley, Michael York, Mimi Rogers, Robert Wagner
Directed by: Jay Roach
Release date: 1997-05-02
7.

The Rainmaker

5.1

When Rudy Baylor, a young attorney with no clients, goes to work for a seedy ambulance chaser, he wants to help the parents of a terminally ill boy in their suit against an insurance company. But to take on corporate America, Rudy and a scrappy paralegal must open their own law firm.

Starring: Matt Damon, Danny DeVito, Jon Voight, Claire Danes, Mary Kay Place
Directed by: Francis Ford Coppola
Release date: 1997-11-18
8.

Cop Land

5.0

Freddy Heflin is the sheriff of a place everyone calls “Cop Land” — a small and seemingly peaceful town populated by the big city police officers he’s long admired. Yet something ugly is taking place behind the town’s peaceful facade. And when Freddy uncovers a massive, deadly conspiracy among these local residents, he is forced to take action and make a dangerous choice between protecting his idols and upholding the law.

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Harvey Keitel, Ray Liotta, Robert De Niro, Michael Rapaport
Directed by: James Mangold
Release date: 1997-08-15
9.

Absolute Power

5.0

A master thief coincidentally is robbing a house where a murder in which the President of The United States is involved occurs in front of his eyes. He is forced to run yet may hold evidence that could convict the President.

Starring: Clint Eastwood, Gene Hackman, Ed Harris, Scott Glenn, Laura Linney
Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Release date: 1997-02-14
10.

U Turn

4.9

When Bobby's car breaks down in the desert while on the run from some of the bookies who have already taken two of his fingers, he becomes trapped in the nearby small town where the people are stranger than anyone he's encountered. After becoming involved with a young married woman, her husband hires Bobby to kill her. Later, she hires Bobby to kill the husband.

Starring: Sean Penn, Nick Nolte, Jennifer Lopez, Joaquin Phoenix, Claire Danes
Directed by: Oliver Stone
Release date: 1997-10-03
11.

The Man Who Knew Too Little

4.8

An American gets a ticket for an audience participation game in London, then gets involved in a case of mistaken identity. As an international plot unravels around him, he thinks it's all part of the act.

Starring: Bill Murray, Peter Gallagher, Joanne Whalley, Alfred Molina, Richard Wilson
Directed by: Jon Amiel
Release date: 1997-11-14
12.

Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil

4.8

A visiting city reporter's assignment suddenly revolves around the murder trial of a local millionaire, whom he befriends.

Starring: John Cusack, Kevin Spacey, Jude Law, Alison Eastwood, Jack Thompson
Directed by: Clint Eastwood
Release date: 1997-11-21
13.

Kiss the Girls

4.7

Forensic psychologist Alex Cross travels to North Carolina and teams with escaped kidnap victim Kate McTiernan to hunt down "Casanova," a serial killer who abducts strong-willed women and forces them to submit to his demands. The trail leads to Los Angeles, where the duo discovers that the psychopath may not be working alone.

Starring: Morgan Freeman, Ashley Judd, Cary Elwes, Alex McArthur, Tony Goldwyn
Directed by: Gary Fleder
Release date: 1997-10-03
14.

The Jackal

4.7

Hired by a powerful member of the Russian mafia to avenge an FBI sting that left his brother dead, a psychopathic hitman known only as The Jackal proves an elusive target for the people charged with the task of bringing him down: a deputy FBI director, a Russian MVK Major, and a jailed IRA terrorist who can recognize him.

Starring: Bruce Willis, Sidney Poitier, Diane Venora, Richard Gere, J.K. Simmons
Directed by: Michael Caton-Jones
Release date: 1997-11-14
15.

Red Corner

4.6

An American attorney on business in China, ends up wrongfully on trial for murder and his only key to innocence is a female defense lawyer from the country.

Starring: Richard Gere, Bai Ling, Bradley Whitford, Byron Mann, Peter Donat
Directed by: Jon Avnet
Release date: 1997-10-30
16.

The Devil's Own

4.5

Frankie McGuire, one of the IRA's deadliest assassins, draws an American family into the crossfire of terrorism. But when he is sent to the U.S. to buy weapons, Frankie is housed with the family of Tom O'Meara, a New York cop who knows nothing about Frankie's real identity. Their surprising friendship, and Tom's growing suspicions, forces Frankie to choose between the promise of peace or a lifetime of murder.

Starring: Brad Pitt, Harrison Ford, Rubén Blades, Treat Williams, Natascha McElhone
Directed by: Alan J. Pakula
Release date: 1997-03-12
17.

Murder at 1600

4.4

A secretary is found dead in a White House bathroom during an international crisis, and Detective Harlan Regis is in charge of the investigation. Despite resistance from the Secret Service, Regis partners with agent Nina Chance. As political tensions rise, they learn that the crime could be part of an elaborate cover-up. Framed as traitors, the pair, plus Regis' partner, break into the White House in order to expose the true culprit.

Starring: Wesley Snipes, Diane Lane, Alan Alda, Daniel Benzali, Dennis Miller
Directed by: Dwight H. Little
Release date: 1997-04-18
18.

Gridlock'd

4.3

After a friend overdoses, Spoon and Stretch decide to kick their drug habits and attempt to enroll in a government detox program. Their efforts are hampered by seemingly endless red tape, as they are shuffled from one office to another while being chased by drug dealers and the police.

Starring: Tupac Amaru Shakur, Tim Roth, Thandie Newton, Charles Fleischer, Howard Hesseman
Directed by: Vondie Curtis-Hall
Release date: 1997-01-29
19.

Metro

4.2

Roper, a hostage negotiator catches a murderous bank robber after a blown heist. The bank robber escapes and immediately goes after the man who put him behind bars.

Starring: Eddie Murphy, Kim Miyori, Art Evans, James Carpenter, Michael Rapaport
Directed by: Thomas Carter
Release date: 1997-01-16
20.

Smilla's Sense of Snow

4.0

Smilla Jaspersen, half Danish, half Greenlander, attempts to understand the death of a small boy who falls from the roof of her apartment building. Suspecting wrongdoing, Smilla uncovers a trail of clues leading towards a secretive corporation that has made several mysterious expeditions to Greenland. Scenes from the film were shot in Copenhagen and western Greenland. The film was entered into the 47th Berlin International Film Festival, where director Bille August was nominated for the Golden Bear.

Starring: Julia Ormond, Gabriel Byrne, Richard Harris, Jim Broadbent, Tom Wilkinson
Directed by: Bille August
Release date: 1997-02-28

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