While people can go on endless debates about it, everything crime-related has been always taken positively by cinema audiences around the globe. Experts argue that the popularity of the crime or gangster genre in media follows an underlying psychological reason. While enjoying a crime-based thriller, most people get to keep their inner demons under wraps and feed their curiosity by watching fictional characters struggle and overcome obstacles in complicated storylines and settings.
As a streaming platform, Hulu has a great selection of gangster movies, offering riveting stories, charismatic casts, and exciting action scenes to its viewers. If you’re a lover of anything gangster, mafia, or crime, you can enjoy some of the best gangster movies on Hulu. If you have an active Hulu subscription and are curious to explore Hulu’s mafia movie collection, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best hood movies available on Hulu.
Top 6 Best Gangster Movies on Hulu
1. Walking Tall (1973)
● Rotten Tomatoes Score: 77%
● Director: Phil Karlson
● Sequel: Walking Tall, Part 2
● Box Office: $40 million
Starting off with a classic and widely acclaimed crime benchmark that inspired two TV shows and movies as sequels in its wake, we’re talking about Walking Tall, one of the best mafia movies on Hulu. Following a semi-biographical narration, the story follows the character of Buford Pusser, a sheriff who takes the initiative to rid the community of crime and corruption. He jeopardizes his own life and loses his family in the jarring process.
The gravity of loss and tragedy is greatly juxtaposed by the amount of action, thrill, and violence in the story, not letting the viewers rest easy until the end credits roll. The film continues to receive a lot of praise for its courage-inspiring lesson to this day. Despite being an old classic, you can’t underestimate that it is less than a violent masterpiece.
2. Once Upon a Time in America (1984)
● Rotten Tomatoes Score: 88%
● Director: Sergio Leone
● Adapted from: Hoods
● Box office: $5.5 million
Once Upon a Time in America is an epic crime thriller set in the early 20th century that follows the lives of a group of gangsters in New York City. The protagonist of the story is Robert De Niro’s character, David “Noodles” Aaronson, a mobster who climbs the ranks of organized crime with the help of his friends Max (James Woods) and Cockeye (William Forsythe).
We follow their lives as their years are spent in the slums through the rocky climb as vicious gangsters. Their relationships are put to the test as they navigate the world of organized crime, which results in tragic losses, love found and lost, and consistent betrayal. Another unmissable classic, Once Upon a Time in America, has inspired countless remakes and is one of the best hood movies on Hulu.
3. Wanted (2008)
● Rotten Tomatoes Score: 71%
● Director: Timur Bekmambetov
● Box Office: 342.5 million USD
Wanted is an action-thriller film based on a comic book miniseries, which is a fact even the film’s old fans don’t know about. The focus of the story is the relatable yet unique character of Wesley Gibson. Things take a turn for the worse for Wesley when his father gets murdered and he realizes he has the ability to kill in a unique way while going undetected.
A woman by the name of Fox recruits him into a mysterious gang. Wesley finds that everything he has known about life is completely different as he begins to explore his deadly abilities by undergoing dangerous missions and exacting training. Boasting an amazing cast of James McAvoy, Angelina Jolie, Morgan Freeman, and Chris Pratt—the storyline of this movie is nothing like you’d expect. You’ll be happy to learn that the film is not your typical mob movie on Hulu, with an engrossing story and dynamic characters ready to betray each other.
Also Read: How To Watch Hulu Outside USA
4. West Side Story (1961)
● Rotten Tomatoes Score: 92%
● Directors: Jerome Robbins, Robert Wise
● Box Office: 44.1 million USD
Kind of a palette cleanser of sorts in this list, West Side Story follows the theme of a mafia story; however, it’s a musical, which makes it stand out from the others. It’s an interesting pick among the other Hulu mafia movies since West Side Story centers on the romance between Tony and Maria, two members of opposing gangs. Kind of like Romeo and Juliet, but in a mafia setting.
The movie follows the setting of the Upper West Side of New York, which sets an immersive ambiance for the story. Even if rivalry is merely the result of competitiveness, the hate-to-love arc between the two main characters overcomes it. The musical also covers the pressure to lead a criminal lifestyle as one of the themes. Aside from the client themes, the track of West Side Story is another classic, with its incredible take on romantic yet dark songs.
5. Red (2010)
● Rotten Tomatoes Score: 72%
● Director: Robert Schwentke
● Sequel: Red 2
● Box Office: 199 million USD
The story sets off as the danger begins to simmer, forcing Frank to return to his old team to fight against the assassin who’s seeking to start a war against the group. With a great plot and dynamic cast, the movie is a combo of intelligent and witty humor and jam-packed action sequences.
Everyone knows Red, whether from memes, iconic scenes or lines, references, etc. With Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Helen Mirren, Morgan Freeman, and Joe Matheson leading the screen, Red is a must-watch among the top Hulu gangster movies. The film is an action-comedy movie inspired by Homage comics and follows the life of a retired CIA black ops agent, Frank Moses, who experiences a sudden attack from an assassin.
6. Cocaine Cowboys (2006)
● Rotten Tomato Score: 71%
● Director: Billy Corben
● Producers: Billy Corben, Alfred Spellman
A true mafia gem brimming with violence, drugs, and action, Cocaine Cowboys is a classic on Hulu’s list of mafia movies and documentaries. It explores how the cocaine trade grew in Miami in the 1970s and 1980s, highlighting the infamous drug lords and their vast criminal businesses.
The documentary also touches on the fascinating and bizarre real-life stories of the drug lords that transformed Miami into a major cocaine trafficking center. Cocaine Cowboys offers a detailed look into the inner workings of the illegal drug trade and its effects on the city by dissecting interviews with former drug dealers, law enforcement officers, and journalists.
The storyline is well-written and presents a clear image of the dangers and violence connected to the cocaine business, along with the actions taken by government enforcement to stop it at the time. A must-watch for fans of real crime who wish to see real-time mafia action on screens, Cocaine Cowboys comprises captivating storytelling and incredibly detailed accounts of real-time events.
Crime stories, whether fiction or not, are always a popular movie genre that is taken by viewers every time. It shows us the different ways that creativity may be used by humans to evolve or, more accurately, to transform the limits of humanity when push comes to shove. When the screen’s filled with rapid action sequences and tense showdowns, it’s hard not to be immersed. But as the credits roll, you can’t help but revel in the post-movie silence about the deep workings of the human mind and what it can be capable of.
When it comes to action, thrills, and violent crimes, Hulu has an amazing selection of gangster movies. All ranging from old classics to fascinating musicals, there’s something for every true-crime lover’s taste.
So, settle on your sofa or bed, prepare some classic movie snacks, and get ready to get lost in the thrill of the underworld with these best gangster movies available on Hulu now!