The Absolute Best Black-And-White Films Worth Watching

Black and white photo of a movie theater showing "Singing in the Rain"
Ricky Turner/Unsplash

Nowadays, the movie industry touts innovative cinematic experiences with advanced digital projection technology and sound systems to entice audiences back into theaters.

But during the advent of cinema long before home-viewing entertainment, people had to go to theaters exclusively to experience films on the big silver screen.

The movies that were filmed and shown in black and white at the time are now considered classics, and there is an enduring quality to these films that have inspired contemporary films recapturing a bygone era like the 2011 French comedy, The Artist.

Curious to hear from neophyte cinephiles, Redditor Zahirico1 asked:

"Which black and white movies are absolutely worth watching?"

These enduring classics are still being talked about among film aficionados.

The Brilliance Of Kurosawa

"Seven Samurai, original 1954 version"


"I mean, all of Kurosawa."

– DCDHermes

Class Film Noir

"Double Indemnity."

– shamwowj

"Every Billy Wilder movie."

– realteamme

A Comedy And Mystery

"The Thin Man."

– haveakiki

"The murderer is right in this room. Sitting at this table. You may serve the fish."

– hp640us

Mother Knows Best


– CentralTown776

"I had the pleasure of going into this movie without knowing anything else but the shower scene, and my god, what a thrill ride. Go into this movie with as little information as you can, and you'll be in for a real treat. – JupiterTarts

Perfect Romantic Comedies

"Roman Holiday and Bringing Up Baby."

– Stormy_the_bay

Mysteries in black and white are all the more ominous yet riveting.

Twelve Angry Men (1957)

"My dad with dementia has about a half dozen movies he watches over and over (and over and over). Twelve Angry Men is one of them."

– Listening_Heads

A Compelling Case

"To Kill a Mockingbird."

– MissionWide

"This. I have an amazing father and zero 'daddy issues' but Gregory Peck’s Atticus is the ultimate portrayal of what a good man should be. And that is apparent even when you are too young to have any concept of a man outside of a father figure but old enough to have a crush."

– SwissMiss90

Now Whodunnit

"Arsenic and old lace."

– IamAPottato

"One of the BEST films ever in my opinion! And funnier because the role of the killer always being told he looks like Boris Karloff — and going into murderous rages over it — was originally played by Boris Karloff. He wasn’t available to reprise his stage role when filming took place."

– Cephalopodio

The following films were deliberately presented in black and white long after the heralding of films in color.

One Of Mel Brook's Best From 1974

"Young Frankenstein."

– InsomniaDreams

"It’s pronounced Fronkensteen!"

– Maso_TGN

Cold War Satire

"Dr. Strangelove."

– shamwowj

"Dude there are SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO many scenes in that movie where Sellers f'king kills me every single time, and I've seen this movie at least 50 times."

"His facial expressions alone when he's talking to Brigadier-General Jack D. Ripper and the general is explaining to him how women stole his essence."

"It's f'king insane how talented that man was."

– ezypee

Schindler's List

"Best movie I’ll only ever watch once."

– Chaps_and_salsa

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