Content Warning: Some of these articles contain discussions of violence and murder
Prime Video’s Without Remorse is the latest Tom Clancy creation that has turned into a movie and expands into the world of the Ryanverse franchise. Starring Michael B. Jordan, the film follows a former Navy SEAL, who seeks vengeance against people who mercilessly killed his pregnant wife. However, things become complicated regarding United States-Russia relations.
Though it has a generic plot, Without Remorse is filled with explosive action and fighting sequences, and Jordan has proven himself worthy as the newest hero, John Kelly. Of course, it is not the only film of its kind, as other movies have suspenseful and thrilling stories, complex characters, and mind-blowing action scenes.
10 The Bourne Identity (2002) – Available On Sling
Starring Matt Damon as Jason Bourne, The Bourne Identity follows a man after almost dying at sea. Following a brain injury, he had been diagnosed with retrograde amnesia, which then leads to him trying to get answers about his mysterious past.
Like Tom Clancy, Robert Ludlum also had a popularized book series about espionage and action thrills that turned into a film franchise. The first of the franchise, The Bourne Identity, received positive reviews for its refreshing story and fast-paced action, with a unique concept on a spy film. The film soon turned into an established franchise, leading to three sequels, one spin-off film, and a TV series that expands into the world of Jason Bourne and espionage.
9 Sicario (2015) – Available On Spectrum TV & Redbox
Given the intensity of the war on drugs, an FBI agent is recruited by a government official to take down several powerful cartels. She works alongside a reserved and enigmatic individual to escalate tension between competing cartels, but it is only the tip of the iceberg.
Directed by Denis Villeneuve and written by Without Remorse‘s screenwriter Taylor Sheridan, Sicario features a star-studded cast of Emily Blunt, James Brolin, and Benicio del Toro. It was considered one of the best movies of its time, thanks to the eye-catching fighting sequences, brilliant directions, and thrilling and well-written story. There is also a sequel, Sicario: Day of the Soldado.
8 Law Abiding Citizen (2009) – Available On FuboTV & Showtime
Following the death of his family, a man tries to seek justice against the man who killed them. However, a plea bargain sees the killer free. Soon, he takes matters into his own hands by bringing hell to those who wronged him and going after corrupted officials like his prosecutor, who committed the unjust.
Law Abiding Citizen has a talented cast, including Gerard Butler, Jamie Foxx, and Viola Davis. It is one of the few films where the audience appreciates the movie more than the critics. The action sequences will surely keep viewers on the edge of their seats for an entertaining action flick.
7 The Hunt For Red October (1990) – Available On FuboTV & Sling
Like many of Tom Clancy’s stories, The Hunt for Red October follows rising tension between the United States and the Soviet Union when a Soviet captain defies orders and sets the course of his submarine to North America. It is now up to Jack Ryan to determine his motives before things escalate.
In this version, Alec Baldwin portrays the famous character, Jack Ryan, and stars alongside Sean Connery, James Earl Jones, and Sam Neill. There are several renditions of the Jack Ryan story, but this first installment of the Ryanverse is considered the best, thanks to its captivating and suspenseful screenplay. The film was nominated for three Oscars awards and won one for ‘Best Sound Effects Editing.’
6 Salt (2010) – Available On Hulu & FuboTV
A CIA agent, Salt, becomes a fugitive after she is wrongly accused of being a Russian spy. As she tries to prove her innocence, she also has to use her extraordinary skills to avoid capture.
Salt stars Angeline Jolie, who is remarkable as the titular character and received praise for her performance. It is also one of her highest-grossing films. Although the story is convoluted, the film has enough brilliant and thrilling action scenes that make it entertaining.
5 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011) – Available On HBO Max
Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy takes place in the 1970s, where relations with the Soviet Union and the Cold War are growing more intense. After learning that MI6 has a mole, the agency seeks a retired officer to find the double agent.
This film has quite a remarkable cast, including Colin Firth, Tom Hardy, and Benedict Cumberbatch. It is a well-crafted and well-written story that takes espionage movies to a different level. The film was listed as one of the best films of its years by many critics and earned three Oscar nominations, including ‘Best Actor for Oldman.’
4 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers Of Benghazi (2016) – Available On FXNOW
Based on the 2014 book by Mitchell Zuckoff, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi follows the historical events of the Benghazi attack in 2012. A security team tries to survive through this ambush while protecting and saving Americans at the U.S. Consulate.
The film has jaw-dropping and harrowing battle sequences, depicting the heroic actions of those during the attack. Also, the cast gives an exceptional performance, with John Krasinski being the standout.
3 Safe House (2012) – Available On HBO Max
A rookie CIA agent finally receives a major assignment to watch over a rogue agent at his safe house. However, they both go on the run after an attack and must uncover the trust.
Despite mixed reviews about the story and choppy editing, Ryan Reynolds and Denzel Washington gave strong performances that made this action thriller captivating and worth the watch. Safe House is packed with thrilling action sequences and car chases that make it a crowd-pleasing action flick.
2 21 Bridges (2019) – Available On FuboTV & Showtime
With no leads on who killed several police officers, an NYPD detective takes extremes measures to close down all 21 bridges to find and stop the suspects. In doing so, he also finds himself in the middle of a conspiracy.
Starring Chadwick Boseman, Taylor Kitsch, Sienna Miller, 21 Bridges is another film on this list where the critics gave mixed reviews, but the audience thoroughly enjoyed it. It is filled with plot twists and well-crafted action scenes that will leave viewers engaged throughout the movie. Also, Boseman reunited with MCU directors, the Russo brothers, who are producers of the film.
1 Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011) – Available On Prime Video & Hulu
Mission: Impossible is perhaps one of the most notable film series of all time, but it was the fourth film that amplified the high stakes of espionage and action thrillers. The IMF disavows their most talented agent, Ethan Hunt, as they bear the responsibilities of a terrorist attack at the Kremlin. As Hunt goes off the grid and seeks the help of other agents, he hopes to stop the next attack while also helping to clear the IMF’s name.
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol is an exceptional addition to the series, with some of the biggest highlights being the brilliantly choreographed action sequences. Portraying Ethan Hunt, Tom Cruise again exhibits his stunt mastery by showcasing some of the most anxiety-inducing action scenes, such as his climb on the Burj Khalifa. The series now consists of six movies, with a seventh one expected to release in 2022.
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