Gangsters have long held a special place in the lore of American cinema dating back to the silent film era. But, the gangster film, as we know it today, truly set its foundation during the 1930s -- a tradition of film that continues with this week's new gangster movie, Gangster Squad. Over the years, audiences have been treated to such gangster classics ranging from Little Caesar to the Godfather trilogy. So, what are the ten best gangster movies of all time?
Who's to say, really? Here's an unrelated list of eight "squads."
The Monster Squad: What a great squad -- I mean, they fight monsters! The interesting thing about The Monster Squad -- other than that it was written by Iron Man 3 director Shane Black -- is that there are no real notable actors in the Monster Squad. I feel like this is one of those movies where you look at the cast list in 2013 and think, Wow, Ryan Reynolds was in The Monster Squad? I had no idea! Strangely, this is not the case.
Firing Squad: Have you ever heard of a firing squad failing at their job?
The Mod Squad: Sadly for The Mod Squad, they are still licking their wounds from that terrible 1999 film adaptation or they might have been at the top of this completely arbitrary and nonsensical fake list. (Is this ranked in order from best to worst? Worst to best? You just have no idea, do you?)
Police Squad: My favorite thing about the original Police Squad! television show was the idea of promoting John Belushi all week as a special guest star, then killing him off in the first few seconds of the episode. (Sadly, the comedian's actual death occurred before this aired, so the footage was never aired.) As far as the movies go, has anyone seen the original The Naked Gun recently? Why is this movie not held in as high regard as Airplane!? My only guess is that the two sequels tarnished the image of the original -- something that Airplane! managed to avoid with Airplane 2: The Sequel. Not to mention that a string of The Naked Gun knockoffs flooded theaters shortly after, too. My point: The original The Naked Gun is still really funny.
The Teenie Weenie Bikini Squad: I have never seen The Teenie Weenie Bikini Squad, but I'm fairly certain that this is pornography. Anyway, it's included in an attempt to get this list at least a little closer to an even 10.
Suicide Squad: The idea of a DC Suicide Squad movie has been gestating for a few months now. Basically, without getting too esoteric (there are actually a couple versions of the Suicide Squad), it's a team partially made up of incarcerated supervillains who go on dangerous missions in exchange for lighter prison sentences. Unless you're into comic books, you've probably never heard of any members of the Suicide Squad. It's most famous members to the general public are most likely Captain Boomerang -- an arch-villain of The Flash -- and Poison Ivy, who was once played by Uma Thurman in a movie that never existed.
Bomb Squad: I cannot think of a more high-pressure job than this. I have always wondered what real-life bomb squad members think of their movie counterparts. I bet that they watch these movies to relieve stress. I like to think that, once a week, a member of a bomb squad will invite the rest of his bomb squad coworkers over for drinks and to watch a bomb squad movie with the sole intention of mocking that movie. I also like to think, to relieve stress, more than one bomb squad member has made a, "Do I cut the red wire or the blue wire, Johnny? Red or blue?!?!," joke before disarming a bomb.
Geek Squad: I have never personally used Best Buy's Geek Squad for any of their services, but they all dress the same and have these nifty uniform vehicles.
DinoSquad: DinoSquad trumps The Monster Squad because, instead of fighting monsters, they become monsters. Well, dinosaurs. So maybe it's not quite a monster, but if you looked out your window right now and saw a dinosaur running toward you, I tend to think that you would be hard pressed to tell the difference. Well, other than maybe a Brontosaurus (or Apatosaurus, if we must) because they seem nice. I'm going to end this paragraph now because, honestly, I don't know anything else about DinoSquad.
Mike Ryan is senior writer for Huffington Post Entertainment. You can contact him directly on Twitter.