Last Updated: November 5th
Superhero blockbusters and Jurassic-sized sequels are great to watch at the theater but if you’re craving a bit of action without the crowded, dingy ambiance of your local cinema, never fear, Amazon’s got you covered. The streaming platform has added a slew of titles guaranteed to get the heart thumping just a bit faster with its action-oriented slate of options. Looking for a space epic full of interstellar battles and a wickedly-fun origin story? They’ve got it. How about a high-stakes chase on horseback through the Old West? Because that’s definitely there. Or, if you’re hunting for something a bit more realistic, why not try a couple of tense, bullet-ridden biopics about war in the Middle East? Whatever your fancy, if it’s action (movies that is. We can’t help with anything else.) you’re searching for, Amazon is the place to go to.
Here are some of the wildest, exhilarating titles currently in the Amazon Prime library that are sure to get your blood pumping.
A Vigilante (2018)
Run Time: 91 min | IMDb: 5.6/10
Olivia Wilde stars in this gritty crime thriller about a woman named Sadie who, after surviving a domestic abuse situation, becomes a self-taught vigilante helping other women escape violence. Wilde’s Sadie is a stoic, broken woman doing the right thing for heartbreaking reasons, but it’s when she cracks a few skulls and puts some wife-beating a**holes in their place that we really begin to root for her. The action is brutal and unforgiving, scrappy fights that involve makeshift weapons and plenty of blood, but it feels real and, more importantly, vital to telling this story well.
Iron Man 2 (2010)
Run Time: 124 min | IMDb: 7/10
There’s a lot to love about the return of Downey Jr. to the role of Tony Stark in Iron Man 2. We meet Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow, we’re treated to a hellishly-fun villain in Sam Rockwell, and the look of the film is worlds above its predecessor. In the grand scheme of the Marvel universe, this flick isn’t a stand-out, but it’s an enjoyable watch, thanks to Downey Jr.’s complete comfortableness in the role of the billionaire-playboy-philanthropist-superhero.
The Avengers (2012)
Run Time: 143 min | IMDb: 8/10
The mind-boggling success of the Marvel Universe this decade makes it easy to forget it’s humble, fantastically-written origins. We’re talking about the first Avengers team-up, a modest affair in comparison to the universe-spanning, dimension-hopping Endgame, but one that still holds up as a worthy outing for our O.G. heroes. This film marked the first time Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Thor, Natasha Romanoff, Bruce Banner, and Clint Barton shared any real screentime and while most of the fighting is done in-house, the team pulls it together to take on a scheming Loki and his invading army of earth-destroying space monsters in the end.
Mission Impossible: Fallout (2018)
Run Time: 127 min | IMDb: 7.8/10
Tom Cruise is joined by Superman himself, Henry Cavill in this latest installment in the action franchise. Cruise returns as Ethan Hunt who leads his IMF team but is joined by Cavill’s CIA Agent, August Walker, who’s tasked with monitoring the group after a mission gone wrong. Hunt is tracking some missing plutonium before a terrorist group called The Apostles can weaponize it against the world but he’s thwarted by a surprising enemy.
Red Dawn (1984)
Run Time: 114 min | IMDb: 6.4/10
Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen star in this ’80s action flick that capitalized on our collective post-Cold War fears by pitting a group of teenagers against an invading Soviet army. Swayze plays Jed Eckert, older brother to Sheen’s Matt, and the two along with their group of friends hide up in the Colorado Rockies, launching guerilla warfare against Soviet and Cuban troops who have begun their occupation. The rebels name themselves the Wolverines after their high school mascot and become key players in the war against the Russians.
Fighting With My Family (2019)
Run Time: 108 min | IMDb: 7.1/10
Dwayne Johnson and Lena Headey star in this family drama about a pair of siblings with dreams of making it in the WWE. Only one, Florence Pugh’s Saraya, actually makes it, but the road to wrestling stardom is riddled with fake friends, sexism, parental drama, and self-doubt. There’s plenty of great matchups here — body slams, cage matches and the like — but the real draw is Pugh, who completely disappears in the role.
Sherlock Holmes (2009)
Run Time: 128 min | IMDb: 7.6/10
If Robert Downey Jr. is to be remembered for one character, it’s undoubtedly going to be Tony Stark. A shame, because he makes a damn good detective in Sherlock Holmes. Eccentric, brilliant, prone to meandering tangents and death-defying stunts, Downey’s Holmes feels modern, despite the period setting of this film. Jude Law plays his loyal friend, Dr. Watson and the two have terrific chemistry, but it’s Guy Ritchie’s visually-stunning action sequence — many done effectively in slo-mo — that make this a total action fest.
Good Time (2017)
Run Time: 101 min | IMDb: 7.3/10
This gritty crime drama hailing from the Safdie brothers transforms star Robert Pattinson into a bleach-blonde sh*t-stirrer from Queens desperate to break his developmentally disabled brother out of prison. Pattinson plays Connie, a street hustler and bank robber with grand plans to break out of his urban hood while Benny Safdie plays his brother Nick, who gets roped into his schemes. When Nick is sent to Ryker’s Island for a job gone wrong, Connie goes on a downward spiral to get him back. Pattinson’s manic energy carries this thing and there’s plenty of police run-ins, shootouts, and heists (however botched) to keep the adrenaline pumping.
You Were Never Really Here (2017)
Run Time: 89 min | IMDb: 6.8/10
Joaquin Phoenix stars as a troubled hitman with a dark past in this thrilling crime flick from Lynne Ramsay. Phoenix plays Joe, a gun for hire, former military man and FBI agent, who spends most of his time rescuing victims of sex trafficking. He’s recruited to save a Senator’s daughter from a brothel that caters to high-end clientele, but the job thrusts him into the center of a conspiracy that costs him everything and ends in blood and tragedy. It’s a relentless slog to be sure, but it works because Ramsay is more interested in profiling the man, not the hits he makes.
True Grit (2010)
Run Time: 110 min | IMDb: 7.6/10