Apart from Superhero movies, Action movies are perhaps the most widely consumed form of cinema the world over owing to their higher entertainment value, enabling certain franchises to run into their ninth or even tenth entries, and still charting out huge numbers across the globe, especially the Asiatic regions. Invariably so, owing to their global appeal, close to 25% of the films released annually have an overlap with action films in an attempt at genre intermixing, making them the fodder of the masses, cementing the fact in the minds of moviegoers as well as makers.
While the theatrical gross is another story, these films also perform invariably well over home media, and in the current age of digital streaming, over several viewing platforms as well. Netflix, the current global leader in streaming content online hosts a number of action films, both from famous franchises and individual productions, often proving to be the viewers’ go to films on mundane afternoons.
Immortalised by the likes of ‘Die Hard’, the Bond films, the MI series, the Bourne series, and currently in the shared era spearheaded by the John Wicks, Atomic Blondes, Liam Neeson being Liam Neeson, and the MI series still going strong, the action genre is more or less characterized by some common quips that we as an audience are now used to and love. Car chases and crashes, explosions, bare knuckled brawls, machine gun fights, and the action hero, who is made to acquire an almost immortal image on celluloid, are now things without which an action film seems almost incomplete, and boy are we thankful for those. After all, there is only so much of serious cinema viewing that can be done until you find yourself inadvertently breaking to some bone crushing adrenaline inducing action flick. In that vein, here is the list of really good action movies on Netflix that you can stream right now. The list includes action adventure movies, action thriller movies and funny action movies.
If the trailer and promos didn’t put it out for you, ‘Polar’ is one of the most violent movies of this year, with the violence bordering on intense torture. However, as you see the film, you realise and begin to see the film for what it is, a delightfully gory B-movie adaptation of a graphic novel, with an abolsute badass for a protagonist at its centre in Mads Mikkelsen. There is something about putting older men in the roles of retired hitmen forced out of retirement to confront the perpetrator who did this to them, a certain appeal that hasn’t died down since ‘Taken’ and ‘John Wick’ were made into entire franchises. ‘Polar’ cranks the violence up several notches, and while it may become unpleasant once in a while, the absurdist humour should make you realise that you are in fact, in a very different world. A film that is exactly what it promises without any scope for contention.
19. Hardcore Henry
Imagine an action film made by a lover of first person shooter videogames, because that is exactly what ‘Hardcore Henry’ is, nothing more, nothing less. That however doesn’t take away from the film how relentlessly fun it is. The film wears its R-rating and videogame obsession on its sleeve as you become Henry and navigate your way through waves upon waves of henchmen and cyborgs out to kill you. Kudos to the cinematography team for pulling a film off entirely in first person, the style putting you right in the middle of the gunfire and hand to hand, resulting in some gleefully over the top violence. Not to be missed if you are looking for some harmless, no consequences fun.
18. What Happened to Monday
Putting the “original” in Netflix, ‘What Happened to Monday’ soars on account of its imaginative sci-fi plot. The year is 2073, and while the human population is left scrambling for resources in a now famished but technologically advanced world, the government has imposed a one child per family policy as a curbing measure. In that, seven identical sisters, all played by Noomi Rapace, named after the seven days of the week are forced to live an existence wherein they are allowed to go out only once a week corresponding to their name, in an attempt to outwit the Child Allocation Bureau (headed by an excellent Glenn Close as Nicolette Cayman), until Monday doesn’t return home one day. If the above plot doesn’t entice you into giving this film a try, I don’t know what will.