The hit streaming service has been in the lead for years with its groundbreaking and award-winning originals from every genre. Whether it be a TV show, a horror movie, a rom-com, or an action movie, Netflix has had plenty of hits. Action movies are a standout on the streaming service, with its high-quality action movies that deliver on all fronts. With great stories, and exciting and jaw-dropping action that boasts stellar casts, Netflix’s original action movies are certainly not to be missed.
from Army of the Dead and Extraction and more recently, The Gray Man, Netflix have often hit more than they have missed when it comes to action movies, and its with these action movies that has cemented Netflix as a leading streaming service. So with that, here is how we would rank the best Netflix original action movies.
7 Revenger (2018)
while Revenger doesn’t necessarily break any new ground in the genre, it is still a highly-entertaining martial arts action flick. The action scenes are what we are here to see and there is plenty of exciting martial arts action. Director Lee Seung-Won delivers visually pleasing action scenes with plenty of trackable punches, kicks, and bloodshed. But perhaps the standout action scene of the movie was when Bruce Khan’s character picked up a sword and went to town on his foes. The scene delivered some spectacular sword-play which was fast, intense, and real.
Set in the near future, dangerous criminals are housed on a hellish prison island, while a man who purposely sends himself to this island seeks revenge for the murder of his family.
6 The Adam Project (2022)
This action comedy reunites Ryan Reynolds with Free Guy director Shawn Levy for a fun and exciting time travel movie. Time travel isn’t necessarily the newest of movie concepts, but The Adam Project does enough to make it stand out from the rest. From its jaw-dropping action, awesome visual effects, and an engaging plot, The Adam Project is certainly a Netflix action movie not to be missed.
Perhaps the most impressive aspect about this movie, is its cast, which includes Ryan Reynolds, Zoe Saldana and Catherine Keener, alongside Jennifer Garner and Mark Ruffalo, playing husband and wife, which makes us all question if this time travel epic is an unofficial 13 Going on 30 sequel. The standout performance was Walker Scobell, delivering a hilarious, and equally heartfelt performance as a young Adam Reed, the younger version of Ryan Reynolds’ character. Scobell perfectly mimics Reynolds in the best ways possible and even delivers a hilarious reference to Ryan Reynolds’ red spandex-wearing hero; Deadpool. With Scobell quoting “super-hero landing”, a reoccurring anecdote throughout the Deadpool movies.
The Adam Project follows Adam Reed (Ryan Reynolds), as he crash lands in the year 2022 and soon finds the 12-year-old version of himself (Walker Scobell). This leads the pair on a dangerous mission to save the future, by traveling back into the past to re-unite with their dead father (Mark Ruffalo).
5 The Old Guard (2020)
Charlize Theron has truly cemented herself as an action movie star, with her roles in Mad Max: Fury Road and Atomic Blonde. The Old Guard is no exception, as Theron yet again delivers amazing action scenes that demonstrate her believable physicality and skills as an action star. The film is based upon the comics of the same name, and was written by Greg Rucka, the man behind the original comic books. This gives the film and its lore a sense of authenticity, and is a true and successful adaptation of the comic series. The choreography in the action is extremely well-crafted, combining gun-fu, which shot the likes of John Wick to its action movie fame, alongside employing the use of swords and axes to provide some awesome kills. The film received mostly positive reviews, with critics praising Theron’s performance, and physicality in the action scenes, as well as the action as a whole.
The movie follows a group of secret centuries-old immortal mercenaries who have the ability to heal themselves. But, when someone soon discovers their secret, the group must fight to protect themselves and their freedom.
4 The Gray Man (2022)
The latest film on this list sees Ryan Gosling star in a Russo Brother-directed action extravaganza. This movie was sold to be one of Netflix’s biggest action movies yet, and it certainly delivers. All the action scenes are exceptionally directed, with standout scenes being an explosive airplane fight scene, as well as an epic shootout in Vienna. One of the biggest draws to Netflix action movies is the A-listers that star in them, and The Gray Man doesn’t disappoint. With Ryan Gosling, Ana De Armas, Rege-Jean Page and Chris Evans, who gave a delightfully fun and evil performance as the mustache-sporting Lloyd. While the plot isn’t the biggest sell of this movie, the fun cast, and huge, exciting action scenes make for an incredibly entertaining watch and gets us excited about its potential sequels and spin-offs.
Based off the book series of the same name, The Gray Man follows Six (Ryan Gosling), who is part of the Gray Man initiative (the CIA’s top asset), and after uncovering agency secrets, triggers a global hunt by assassins.
Directed by stunt coordinator Sam Hargave, Extraction certainly delivered on what it set out to do. Delivering explosive stunts, beautifully shot action, and amazing choreography, Extraction is one of the best movies on the streaming service. While the film doesn’t offer a fresh plot, or many interesting characters, the action is the film’s biggest draw, and gives the film its edge over the competition. The film was such a hit, that it quickly led to Netflix announcing a sequel to be released next year.
The film shot to success with its very impressive 12-minute, one-take (continuous) shot, seamlessly transitioning from car chases to shootouts, and finally a tense one-on-one knife brawl. In an interview with Indie Wire, Hargraves stated “It took us from conception to execution, probably four or five months”. Which is a substantial amount of time, but it more than paid off as it was one of the most impressive action scenes of 2020.
Extraction follows a black market mercenary, as he is hired to rescue the kidnapped son of an imprisoned international crime lord. But, in the underworld of weapons dealers and drug traffickers, an already deadly mission quickly becomes the impossible.
2 Army of the Dead (2021)
Zack Snyder’s latest zombie epic, is nothing short of a spectacle, with its grand scale, exciting action, awesome characters, and a zombie tiger. The film sports a star-studded cast, with the likes of Dave Bautista, Hiroyuki Sanada, Omari Hardwick, Tig Natarro, and the standout being Matthias Schweighofer, who is simply lovable as Ludwig Dieter. The character quickly became a fan favorite. So much so, that a spin-off titled Army of Thievesreleased not long after Snyder’s zombie movie, focuses on Ludwig’s journey to becoming a world-class safe cracker.
Zack Snyder is the king of slow-mo movie intros, and Army of the Deaddelivers one of the best of his career. Giving the audience a stylistically epic sequence as Las Vegas becomes overrun by thousands of the undead, with “Viva Las Vegas” on full blast as we get to witness the bloody carnage unfold on screen. Army of the Dead has since been nominated for numerous awards, but most notably, the film took home the award for Oscars Fan Favorite (2021) at the 94th Academy Awards.
The film follows a group of mercenaries as they take on the ultimate heist by walking into a zombie-infested Las Vegas in hopes of pulling off the impossible. There, they have hopes of stealing the money and escaping with their lives.
1 The Night Comes for Us (2018)
The action in this martial arts extravaganza is simply breathtaking, and is very much in the same vein as The Raid movies. Not only is the action top-notch and comparable to the phenomenal action from The Raid, but the film also stars two main stars from the first Raid movie, Joe Taslim and Iko Uwais. They are incredible martial artists in their own right, which makes their epic, brutal, and very long battle at the end of the film so brilliant.
Be warned, this movie is not for the faint of heart, as it’s one of the most brutal, bloody, and all-around violent action movies of all time. It includes many knife slashes, people getting blown to pieces, and a very violent scene in a butcher shop that we won’t go into too much detail about. There is so much blood spilled that it could potentially give the saw franchise a run for its money.
The Night Comes for Us follows Ito (Joe Taslim), a gangland enforcer, who turns his back on his former life as a killer by rescuing a young girl. Ito must fight for his and the girl’s lives as countless thugs are sent to kill them, alongside a deadly gang prospect (Iko Uwais).