- The Top 10 Best Myrna Loy Movies
- Notable Mention: Evelyn Prentice (1934)
- Notable Mention: The Animal Kingdom (1932)
- 10. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer (1947)
- 9. The Thin Man Goes Home (1944)
- 8. Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream Home (1944)
- 7. I Love You Again (1940)
- 6. Love Crazy (1941)
- 5. Another Thin Man (1939)
- 4. Libeled Lady (1936)
- 3. After the Thin Man (1936)
- 2. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)
- 1. The Thin Man (1934)
Myrna Loy, best known for films such as The Thin Man and The Best Years of Our Lives, is one of the most iconic actresses of the 1930s and 1940s. She’s one of our favorites. There’s just something about Myrna Loy movies, isn’t there? A stellar actress in both the most dramatic and comedic pieces to come out of the 30s, Loy has captured audiences’ attention and love for decades upon decades.
Because we’re such fans of Miss Myrna Loy over here, we’ve decided to put together the top 10 best Myrna Loy movies. This list has been put together by examining viewer ratings on sites like IMDB and Rotten Tomatoes, as well as our own opinion — though be on the lookout for personal top lists from individual contributors later on!
One thing so many of the films on this list have in common? William Powell. Her constant collaborator — the duo created 14 films together! — Loy is at her absolute best when she has Powell by her side. So, it’s no wonder to see so many of the two films on this list. If you didn’t already know, Myrna Loy and William Powell were perfect together. And this list proves that.
It should also be noted that only feature films that Miss Loy starred in as somewhat of a lead role will be seen here. She’s in some great silent films with bit parts, but those won’t be included here.
The Top 10 Best Myrna Loy Movies
Anyway, here are the top 10 best Myrna Loy movies of all time!
Notable Mention: Evelyn Prentice (1934)
Not the best Myrna Loy movie, but definitely not the worst, Evelyn Prentice has a spot in our hearts mainly because it’s one of the best dramatic roles Loy has ever done (in our opinion). Alongside her constant sparring partner William Powell, this movie tells the story of a woman who has an affair with another man and then gets caught up in a murder scandal when the man ends up dead. And who happens to be prosecuting the murder case? Her husband has no idea she was ever involved with the man in any way.
Throughout the film, Loy’s character struggles with trying to understand whether she should confess to this affair — and put herself in the murder trial spotlight — or keep her marriage intact. The main reason why Evelyn Prentice is given a notable mention here is because of the ending when Loy finally chooses to reveal her own role in the man’s death.
The look of utter heartbreak that Powell quietly expresses while in court, alongside Loy’s own heartbreak and guilt, is a scene that makes the whole movie one of the best collaborations the two have ever done. While it’s not the best — Loy’s in a lot of great movies — we could never make this list without including Evelyn Prentice.
Notable Mention: The Animal Kingdom (1932)
In one of Loy’s first bigger roles, she plays the new wife to Leslie Howard’s rich, lost soul. The Animal Kingdom tells the story of a man (Howard) who struggles to deal with the love he has for his new wife (Loy), versus the continuing love he has for his mistress (Ann Harding). This film is definitely a vehicle for Howard and Harding, but Loy manages to steal every scene she’s in.
Plus, we also get Loy as a seductress and all-around controlling wife. Compared to the roles she would eventually be known for, her early role here is a huge departure. But she excels in this pre-code film, which is still delightful to watch in the 21st century. Therefore, we simply had to give The Animal Kingdom a notable mention.
10. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer (1947)
The second film collaboration between Myrna Loy and Cary Grant, The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer also stars Old Hollywood icon Shirley Temple. The movie follows a high school girl who falls in love with a playboy artist. Loy plays Temple’s older sister, and the whole movie is (as you can imagine) a lot of fun.
Loy plays a serious character in the film. She also did this quite well in Double Wedding (1937) with William Powell. This serious role helps give her something new to do. She’s done slapstick comedy. She’s done heartbreaking drama. With The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer, she can be the straight character in a delightful comedy.
Loy and Cary Grant prove that they can work quite well together, once again. The two’s first pairing was Wings in the Dark, a romantic adventure, in 1935. Here, a full 12 years later, the two prove that they still have it.
9. The Thin Man Goes Home (1944)
The fifth Thin Man movie, The Thin Man Goes Home finds its own home on this list simply because we get to see Nick Charles’s family and hometown life — and Nora Charles’s reaction to it. While Shadow of the Thin Man (the fourth movie) isn’t on this list, it is also BRILLIANT and definitely should be watched by any Loy fan.
The Thin Man Goes Home barely beat it out, but there’s just something about seeing Nick and Nora in Nick’s childhood home that is slightly more enjoyable. This movie follows the couple as they return to Nick’s hometown, only to quickly find themselves involved in yet another murder case.
Myrna Loy movies are best when she can portray both her comedic and her dramatic acting chops. And in this movie, she proves she can do all.
8. Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream Home (1944)
The third of three Cary Grant and Myrna Loy pairings, Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream Home is a fun comedy that follows a married couple who are determined to build a house to their liking out in the country. Unfortunately for them, they quickly learn that building a house is a lot more trouble than they realized. Luckily for us, it’s quite fun to watch.
In our opinion, Cary Grant is the best when he’s in a comedy. And while he was on a roll creating blockbuster after blockbuster with Irene Dunne at this time, we’re glad Dunne was filming another movie and couldn’t join in on Mr. Blandings. The role eventually went to Myrna Loy, who brought her amazing comedic chops to the role.
7. I Love You Again (1940)
Enjoyed by both critics and audiences alike when it was released, I Love You Again was the ninth pairing between Myrna Loy and William Powell. This film follows a man who recovers from amnesia, only to discover he’s a con artist. For the last few years of his life, he had no idea who he was in his past. Now that he’s “back”, things are about to change for him. However, he quickly realizes that he’s in love with his soon-to-be ex-wife… complicating matters even more.
Once again, Loy and Powell bring amazing charisma and chemistry to their roles, and you quickly find yourself rooting for them in this crazy setup. We love a good crazy comedy here, and I Love You Again is just that.
6. Love Crazy (1941)
Myrna Loy and William Powell are at it again, folks. In their tenth film collaboration, Powell and Loy play a married couple… who decide to get divorced at the beginning of the movie. They both love each other, though their marriage has definitely hit somewhat of a breaking point.
So, in Love Crazy, we get to see Powell’s character do everything he can in order to win back his wife, who Loy plays. And boy does he do some crazy things, something the title reminds us. It’s a delightful film that once again proves Powell and Loy have some of the best chemistry between actors. In fact, this movie did so well at the box office (it gained the equivalent of $8.6 million) AND was beloved by critics, who wrote that they thought this was Loy and Powell’s best movie together to date!
Myrna Loy movies tend to be their best when she’s with William Powell — and Love Crazy is a great example of this. Honestly, would this movie be so good if it wasn’t her and Powell in the leads? Probably not. That’s just the type of chemistry and charisma they always bring to their roles together!
5. Another Thin Man (1939)
The third installment in the Thin Man series, Another Thin Man brings a baby into the mix. Yep, Nick and Nora Charles are parents now. And while you may think that adding a baby into the mix would throw off the whole dynamic, that’s the last thing that happens. There may be three in the family now (four counting Asta), but Nick and Nora are just as fun as ever.
Another Thin Man follows Nick and Nora as they help out an explosives manufacturer, who believes that a young man is out to kill him. The film truly is a lot of fun, just as all the Thin Man movies are. Myrna Loy and William Powell still have it, even though this is their eighth film collaboration. When it comes to the Old Hollywood series, you simply don’t get better than the Thin Man series.
4. Libeled Lady (1936)
Put Myrna Loy, William Powell, Jean Harlow, and Spencer Tracy together in a film, and what do you get? A fun time.
Libeled Lady feels like it was one of the most fun movies for Loy to film, and by all accounts, it does appear that all four stars had a great time making this one. Powell and Harlow were engaged at the time, Tracy joked throughout filming that he was in love with Loy (he had yet to fall in love with Katharine Hepburn), and all four of them became great friends. That mutual appreciation shows in the final result and can definitely be attributed to why so many people fell in love with this screwball comedy. When people like each other and have fun making a film, it shows.
Libeled Lady tells the story of a socialite (Loy) who sues a big paper for libel, which prompts the editor to bring some help from his fiancee and old employee as he tries to make the false story true, and therefore save him from this libel case. It’s another Loy/Powell vehicle, and no one’s complaining. It’s fun, hysterical, and with an all-star cast that elevates this movie to be loved.
3. After the Thin Man (1936)
After the success of the first Thin Man film, the powers decided to release a sequel two years after the first. Of course, sequels rarely contain the same enthusiasm that initial movies do. But there’s something about After the Thin Man that sets it apart from this theory.
And that’s mainly because it’s a really good film. In After the Thin Man, we get to see Nick and Nora Charles return home to visit her family… and get caught up in yet another murder case for the two to solve. It’s actually just as enjoyable as the first!
Plus, when you have a young Jimmy Stewart thrown into the mix, that’s always fun. Nick and Nora are as funny and loved up as ever, and Myrna Loy’s chemistry with William Powell continues to shine. So, while so many sequels from other film series tend to lose their charm, the same can’t be said about After the Thin Man — which is why it HAD to be in Loy’s top five.
2. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946)
One of the most popular movies to come out of the 1940s — and possibly out of Old Hollywood itself — The Best Years of Our Lives has stood the test of time and is still considered one of those great old movies to watch. Directed by William Wyler (who is always fantastic), and also starring icons Dana Andrews, Fredric March, Teresa Wright, and Virginia Mayo, there’s no wonder why people love this film so much.
The Best Years of Our Lives tells the story of three World War II veterans who return home to discover that their families (and themselves) have changed completely. It was a film that needed to be made after the war, but it’s still a movie that is relevant today. And it also includes Myrna Loy at her best — which is why it was a no-brainer to put this one at number two.
Myrna Loy’s movies are always amazing, but here she really does shine.
1. The Thin Man (1934)
Did you really think it would be anything else? The Thin Man changed the game for Loy. She was becoming a big star in the early 30s, but her pairing with William Powell in The Thin Man made her iconic. There’s a reason six movies were made about Nick and Nora Charles — they’re delightful to watch together!
The Thin Man follows Nick Charles, a retired detective, and his charming wife Nora as they embark on a mystery case to find an old friend of Nick’s. The case twists and turns and eventually turns into a murder case. But through it all, we have the charisma and love between Myrna Loy and William Powell, and boy is it amazing. And we also get to watch them booze the day away.
Therefore (in our opinion!), The Thin Man is definitely Myrna Loy’s best movie. It just is, guys. No matter how many times you watch this film, it never truly gets old. It’s a classic, through and through — and it’s Loy at her absolute best.