‘L.A.Confidential’ lost Best Picture to ‘Titanic’ at the 70th Academy Awards! But it never sank into oblivion like a ship. Instead, the neo-noir flick stands tall as a towering cinematic achievement even today. The movie, directed by the late Curtis Hanson, takes us right into the labyrinth of a decadent underbelly that includes the police department and Hollywood of the ’50’s. Three LAPD officers, the straightforward tough guy Officer Wendell “Bud” White, played by Russell Crowe, the undercover narcotics detective Det. Sgt. Jack Vincennes, a celebrity inside Hollywood in his own right (Kevin Spacey) and the greenhorn Sergeant Edmund “Ed” Exley (Guy Pearce), who rises to the post of Detective Lieutenant by testifying against his fellow colleagues, get embroiled in a multiple homicide case full of deceit and danger.
Curtis Hanson co-wrote the script with screenwriter Brian Helgeland based on the third installment of the 1990 novel series ‘L.A. Quartet,’ by James Ellroy. Kim Basinger plays the character of Lynn Bracken who is a trapped and troubled sex-worker and a doppelganger of Veronica Lake. Danny DeVito joins the cast as Sid Hudgens who is the publisher of the ‘Hush-Hush’ magazine. ‘L.A. Confidential’ won two Academy Awards out of nine nominations. Kim Basinger bagged the Best Supporting Actress award while Brian Helgeland got the award for Best Adapted Screenplay.
Today’s list of films, in their tone and content, deal with narratives that are in the vein of ‘L.A. Confidential.’ Though not entirely similar, the stories and characters of these films engage with the dark recesses of society and the human mind. So, without further ado, here is the list of best movies similar to ‘L.A. Confidential’ that are our recommendations. You can watch several of these movies like ‘L.A. Confidential’ on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime.
10. Farewell, My Lovely (1975)
Adapted from the famous novel of the same name by Raymond Chandler, ‘Farewell My Lovely’ takes us back to the ’40’s Los Angeles where we follow the investigative adventures of the iconic Private Eye Philip Marlowe. Living in a dingy hotel room Marlowe has only got “a hat, a coat and a gun” to his name and only one person in the police force, a certain Detective Nulty, is there who he can call his friend. While already investigating the murder of one of his own clients, Marlowe comes across the giant-sized ex-convict Moose Malloy who he saves just in the nick of time from being assassinated by gunmen.
Malloy asks Marlowe to find out his old love Velma, who Malloy has not seen for the last seven years, before vanishing in the crowd. Both the cases of the murdered client and Velma intertwine as Marlowe is knocked out, drugged and kept captive. He falls for the seduction of Helen Grayle, the femme fatale, and walks through the streets and corrupted quarters of L.A. to solve the entwined. The great Robert Mitchum plays the role of Philip Marlowe. Other cast includes Harry Dean Stanton, Charlotte Rampling and “very young” Sylvester Stallone in one of his earliest appearances on screen.