Everyone likes a good investigation story and, for this very reason, the figure of the detective is so ubiquitous in cinema. From the classic man addicted to mysteries and with the insight to solve these riddles based on small pieces of evidence, to great plots in which a police officer or even a common person needs to race against time to solve a crime, what matters is that doubt is the great food good entertainment.
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A good detective film is one that plants suspicion or builds such an engaging suspense that the viewer himself feels he needs answers, engaging in the investigation by piecing together clues and devising theories of what really happened as the story is told. The greatest merit of a production like this is to make us part of its solution.
Luckily for us, there is a good list of feature films that manage to fulfill this proposal very well. They are adaptations of literary classics, original works and even imagined versions of children’s games and even cartoons that manage to deliver all that investigation experience that we love so much. Such a wide variety that just goes to show how much a good mystery can take on different guises.
10. Sherlock Holmes
There’s no way to talk about detective movies without mentioning the greatest of all time. Sherlock Holmes is the great icon when we talk about investigations and his name has become synonymous with solving almost unsolvable riddles. Arthur Conan Doyle’s character is so emblematic in this sense that there are even those who believe he is real.
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And, of the various adaptations that the character has received throughout the history of cinema, one of the funniest is the one starring Robert Downey Jr. By bringing a more eccentric personality to the detective, the actor manages to present a new facet of this hero that makes the whole mystery involving an occult serial killer even more interesting.
The feature was somewhat overshadowed by the BBC series, which showed an even more passionate version of Sherlock, but there is no denying that this Tony Stark-like detective worked very well and brings a mystery that is very fun to solve.
Sherlock Holmes is available on HBO Max.
9. The Pale Blue Eye
Even before Arthur Conan Doyle wrote Sherlock Holmes, the world of literature already had a great detective to call its own — Auguste Dupin, a character created by Edgar Allan Poe. And what the film The Pale Blue Eye does is play with all the dark aura surrounding the author to show the influences that the writer had to create both his investigator and to become the great master of horror that we know.
The film is based on the book by Louis Bayard, which mixes reality with fiction and brings a mystery that also mixes a serial killer with occult elements. In the case, there are a series of murders inside the United States Military Academy and all the victims are found with their hearts ripped out.
From there, the young cadet Edgar Poe (Harry Melling) starts to work together with the renowned detective Augustus Landor (Christian Bale), who was famous in the past for solving great crimes, but who opted for isolation in the mountains – and immerse himself in this investigation can bring many truths to light.
The Pale Blue Eye is available on Netflix.
8. Enola Holmes
Sherlock Holmes has become so iconic in the world of investigative stories that it’s even natural that derivative works from the world’s greatest detective begin to emerge. And Enola Holmes is a fun move in that direction, showing that even the character’s younger sister inherited the intelligence and insight to unravel great crimes.
Starring Millie Bobby Brown, the film has a lighter and more fun approach aimed at a younger audience, but without giving up everything that gives life to a good mystery.
Enola Holmes is available on Netflix.
7. Who Framed Roger Rabbit
Few people realize it, but the fun and classic Who Framed Roger Rabbit is a great investigation story. Not by chance, he plays with all the language of noir stories, with the detective in the overcoat and troubled past and even the femme fatale who enters his room shrouded in mystery and danger.
The difference is that this is all done by mixing animation with real people in a plot that is quite crazy and full of charisma — mainly by bringing in several well-known characters from other films and animations. It’s also a great way to introduce this storytelling style to kids, although some of the jokes haven’t aged so well.
Who Framed Roger Rabbit is available on Disney+.
6. Two Nice Guys
With Two Nice Guys, director Shane Black rescues a somewhat forgotten formula in investigation stories: the dysfunctional police duo. It’s the same logic that made films like Lethal Weapon a success, but adapted for current times in a very entertaining plot that features good action scenes and a great mystery seasoned with a very acidic humor in the relationship between its protagonists.
And that’s what makes investigation so fun. While these two agents who don’t get along must find the daughter of a government agent who has been kidnapped, they delve into a much bigger and darker conspiracy that takes unexpected turns and that makes the film one of the great surprises of the genre in recent years. years old.
Two Nice Guys is available on Netflix and HBO Max.
The simple fact that it is based on a true story already makes Zodiac a very intriguing film. But we are talking about one of the mysteries that most intrigued both the press and the police and armchair investigators around the world. The Zodiac Killer became world famous for committing a series of crimes and leaving riddles to challenge the authorities to discover his identity.
But these riddles were so complex that no one was able to figure out who he was and a whole myth was created around this whole story. The riddle’s answer was only unraveled in 2021, more than 50 years after it happened.
And the film Zodiac reproduces very well the tension that took over California in the 1940s. Starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Robert Downey Jr and Mark Ruffalo, the film shows the race of both the police and the press to follow in the footsteps of this serial killer to the while trying to piece together the truth.
Zodiac is available for purchase and rental on iTunes, Google Play and Amazon.
4. Murder on the Orient Express
Alongside Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot is one of the great names in fiction when it comes to investigative history. The character created by Agatha Christie became so memorable that he became one of the exponents of a very popular subgenre of cinema, the whodunnit, which is nothing more than this plot in which you have to unravel a murder and everyone is a suspect.
And of all the stories involving the detective, none is more iconic than Murder on the Orient Express. He epitomizes the style very well by having Poirot investigate a robbery aboard a train. Thus, as the vehicle moves, all passengers become suspects and also potential victims, which makes the detective have to run so that he himself does not become the target of this criminal.
Murder on the Orient Express is available on Star+.
3. The Seven Suspects
Investigation stories are so popular that they even become a theme for children’s stories, such as the classic game Detective — or Clue, in the most recent editions. Because the game served as the basis for a movie, which brought to the screen all the dynamics of the games you played with your cousins as a child.
As the title itself makes clear, there are seven characters who are suspected of a crime and the plot unfolds exposing all the motivations that each of them had to be the culprit — everything to, in the end, reveal that the truth is really in the details. .
And the most interesting thing is to see iconic characters, such as Coronel Mostarda and Dona Violeta, taking shape on the big screen.
The Main Seven is available for purchase and rental on iTunes and the Microsoft Store.
2. The Name of the Rose
One of the greatest classics of literature is also one of the great investigation films to date. Based on the work of Umberto Eco, the 1986 feature has Sean Connery in the lead role playing a monk who is called to investigate a series of murders in a monastery in the countryside of Italy.
The most interesting thing about this story is not just the mystery surrounding the deaths, but the whole heavy atmosphere that builds up around the protagonist’s arrival, exposing a great split within the monastery and the religious orders that exist there. A true high school classic.
The Name of the Rose is available on Oldflix.
1. Between Knives and Secrets
Benoit Blanc may not be as well known as Sherlock Holmes or even Hercule Poirot, but he’s become just as beloved. The character played by Daniel Craig conquered the hearts of the public by starring in two films that very well resume the atmosphere of these whodunnit investigation stories while at the same time bringing good doses of good humor in intelligent and very agile scripts.
This was made very clear with the recent Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, but it is with Entre Facas e Segredos that we realize all the sagacity of this investigator at the same time that we fall in love with his irreverent way and his unconventional methods of solving problems. a crime. No wonder it became an instant classic.
Between Knives and Secrets is available on Netflix and Telecine.