The best action movies to stream for all the action you can handle
From high falls to fireballs, action movies are commonly known for over-indulging in acts that might seem a little far-fetched to attempt in the real world.
For all its cheesiness, it’s a genre that’s always remained true to its roots, never shying away from making the impossible seem possible, and the unbelievable feel believable. So let’s take a look at which flicks make the cut in our top 10…
The Terminator 2 (1991): Judgement Day:
Not only is ‘Judgment Day’ considered one of the greatest action films of all time, but it is also considered one of the greatest sequels of all time.
On its official release, the movie broke new ground in the realms of CGI and practical effects while also breaking international box office records. Between the jaw-dropping action sequences, captivating visual effects and a handful of memorable characters that have stood the test of time as cinematic icons, this is the kind of film that reminds us of why we love going to the cinema in the first place.
Basically, it’s ‘The Godfather’ of the action genre and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Edward Furlong, Linda Hamilton and more
How to stream Terminator 2: Judgment Day
Diehard fans are still torn between which out of the two – Alien or Aliens – deserves to be crowned the superior film (which is understandable considering both are stylistically and thematically in a league of their own).
Ridley Scott’s eerily contained ‘Alien’ was the perfect balance of atmospheric horror and deep space exploration that took audiences into a whole new realm of the unknown, ultimately setting extremely high standards for the future of sci-fi movies to come.
On the other hand, James Cameron’s ‘Aliens’ is quite the opposite and goes for a high-octane, proudly exorbitant action extravaganza that has you holding your breath from the first frame until the last. And even after multiple viewings, it still feels fresh. Not to mention, Sigourney Weaver’s deeply humane and instinctive portrayal of Ripley has gone down in history for being one of cinemas most kick-ass heroines, so what more could we possibly ask for?
Cast: Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn, Michael Biehn and more
How to stream Aliens
Kill Bill (2003):
With more than a few notches in his belt to prove that he had enough creative gusto to pull off a martial arts action film, it’s not surprising that Quieten Tarantino’s hyper-stylized revenge saga is one of the strongest contenders in terms of artistic flair.
Right off the bat (or sword, for that matter), it’s no Pulp Fiction, because that would be like comparing apples to oranges. Funnily enough, Kill Bill was actually in development while ‘Pulp’ was still in production and that’s probably a big part of the reason why the story and characters are so well-developed- they were quite literally being created years before his other works were even completed.
If that doesn’t quite cut it for some, then Tarantino’s cartoonish sense of humour, the top-notch performances from its eclectic cast, and the mind-boggling fight choreography should.
Cast: Uma Thurman, David Carradine, Daryl Hannah and more
How to stream Kill Bill
Die Hard (1988):
The best thing about Christmas is that it gives us all a guilt-free pass to put up our feet and indulge in the movies that light the flames of our seasonal nostalgia. And that’s where Die Hard comes in.
Even if it’s not the most conventional selection for the family to chuck on after one too many eggnogs, it still packs just enough of a festive punch to qualify for a yearly revisit and reminds us of a time when all you really needed to make a great action film was a villain with slick hair-do and snappy one-liners like “Nine million people in the world and I gotta kill one with smaller feet than my sister”.
Ah, those were the days.
Cast: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Bonnie Bedelia and more
How to stream Die Hard
The Matrix (1999):
While considered a landmark in the genre, and not just for its cutting-edge use of technology and groundbreaking special effects, The Matrix is still just as celebrated as it ever was for how well it conceptualised its own ideas into a compelling narrative.
One thing we know for sure is that – whoever said originality was dead, must have been sleeping under a rock. With an array of technical achievements on display right on the cusp of the new millennium, a slight touch of dystopian fantasy and a too-cool-for-school attitude that has become a huge part of its signature charm, The Matrix was always bound to have a legacy like this.
Cast: Keanu Reeves, Carrie-Anne Moss, Laurence Fishburne and more
How to stream The Matrix
If there’s one auteur that knows how to push audiences’ buttons, it’s Paul Verhoeven. Widely known as the master of cinematic sleaze, in 1987 the director took a brief hiatus from his Euro-arthouse roots and challenged his own desires by creating something that would appeal more to the status quo. Thus, Robocop was conceived.
Science fiction was never really the director’s forte, but that’s also the same reason this futuristic gem sets itself apart from similar entries in the genre. The movie is deeply submerged in political satire without ever being preachy or self-serious. It’s just plain and simply a deadpan cop unleashing fury and mayhem on the streets, and we just can’t get enough of it.
Cast: Peter Weller, Nancy Allen, Kurtwood Smith and more
How to stream Robocop/b>
Following the international success of Aliens in 1986, filmmaker John McTiernan knew he had big shoes to fill as he went on to make one of the era’s most memorable action films lead by the genre’s favourite leading man, Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Where the Alien franchise used outer space as its battlefield for survival, Predator instead threw us headfirst into the Central American jungle where man was able to meet his match.
Comparisons between the two are inevitable, but apart from an alien that’s hungry for human blood, Predator feels very much in a world of its own in both form and content, setting the tone by always finding room for a laugh even when the stakes are high.
Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Kevin Peter Hall, Carl Weathers and more
How to stream Predator/b>
Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981):
During the unprecedented chaos of 2020, Disneyland was put on pause for a brief moment. However, this gave the land “Where Dreams Come True” some much-needed time to be proactive and refurbish one of its longest-standing attractions – the ‘Indiana Jones Adventure’.
While the ride is/was admittedly dated, the fact that this Hollywood franchise was successful enough to inspire something that takes up a whopping 57,4000 square feet of the theme park itself should be more than enough to prove how influential these movies really were and continue to be.
Regardless of its outlandish plot, this installment is still considered by many to be the leader of the pack for delivering bucketloads of adventure and more importantly, it saw the birth of one of cinematic history’s most treasured heroes, Indiana himself.
Cast: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman and more
How to stream Raiders Of The Lost Ark/b>
It’s never easy telling an action-packed story in a single location, let alone setting it inside something that’s notorious for slowing down traffic in the real world, but Speed somehow pulls it off.
Hailed as one of the best ‘popcorn’ movies of the ’90s, Jan de Bont’s lean direction pulls no punches and transforms the concept of ‘slowing down’ instead of ‘speeding up’ the real threat of the movie.
It’s so simple, yet so brilliant. Apart from its pulse-pounding premise, the movie itself was a solid vehicle for both Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock to showcase their acting chops, which put them on the radar with many genre filmmakers to come.
Cast: Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock, Dennis Hopper and more
How to stream Speed/b>
Mission Impossible: Fallout (2018):
From an oddly unsettling interview on Oprah, to the recent aggressive outbursts aimed at crewmembers for not wearing masks while on-set of his new film, the past has proven that Tom Cruise is no stranger to controversy. Yet, behind all the negative connotations linked to the actor’s name, it’s impossible to deny (wink wink) that the man himself is extremely talented and also very dedicated to his craft.
It’s a rare phenomenon to witness Hollywood A-listers risking their lives for the sake of art, but the stunts performed in ‘Fallout’ are 99% genuinely Cruise-controlled and we’ve really gotta admire him for that.
With six installments spanning four decades (and another two on their way), not all are as impressive as each other, but this one really takes the franchise above and beyond its predecessors and manages to deliver one adrenaline-pumping sequence after the next.
Cast: Tom Cruise, Rebecca Ferguson, Henry Cavill and more
How to stream Mission: Impossible- Fallout/b>
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