5 best action movies on Netflix to stream right now

Ryan Gosling, as Sierra Six/Court Gentry in The Gray Man, bruised and bloodied
(Image credit: Stanislav Honzik/Netflix)

Action movies come in many shapes and sizes. Some have a healthy dose of comedy, while others are more about explosions, fast cars and danger. No matter what flavor you are in the mood for, action movies make you want to grab the popcorn, dim the lights and turn up the speakers to 11. They give you that ultimate movie theater experience, even when you're streaming at home.

Netflix has some of the best action movies available. They appeal to action enthusiasts of all kinds by including a wide range of options and catering to all kinds of tastes. You'll notice the movies on this list lean towards the intense type with heavy storylines, gritty underworlds, dangerous missions, and sketchy characters. 


Extraction | Official Trailer | Screenplay by JOE RUSSO Directed by SAM HARGRAVE | Netflix - YouTube Extraction | Official Trailer | Screenplay by JOE RUSSO Directed by SAM HARGRAVE | Netflix - YouTube
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Based on the graphic novel "Ciudad," "Extraction" is Sam Hargrave's directorial debut. Chris Hemsworth stars as Tyler Rake, a black-op mercenary on a mission to save a young boy kidnapped by drug lords. However, the only problem is that Rake has very little to lose and isn't afraid to give up his life on this mission.

Although this film does have violent moments, it has some incredible action sequences that make it worth your while. Many reviewers compared Hemsworth's character to John Wick, which is appropriate all things considered (although, the "John Wick" movies have somewhat stronger plotlines). "Extraction" is in the top 10 list of Netflix's most-watched films of all time and for good reason. 

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'Triple Frontier'

Triple Frontier | Official Trailer [HD] | Netflix - YouTube Triple Frontier | Official Trailer [HD] | Netflix - YouTube
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This is another directorial debut, by J.C. Chandor, who helms a film about five Special Forces operatives who find out from an informant that South American crime lord Gabriel Martin Lorea is hiding $75 million. They plan a heist, and as one would expect, things go terribly wrong. The cast includes Ben Affleck as Tom 'Redfly' Davis, Oscar Isaac as Santiago 'Pope' Garcia, Charlie Hunnam as William 'Ironhead' Miller, Garrett Hedlund as Ben "Benny" Miller and Pedro Pascal as Francisco 'Catfish' Morales. Each character puts their lives at risk, all for the want of money. 

While this may not be an award-winning film, it is still your classic Friday night flick. The action will keep you captivated throughout, even as it delivers an underlying morale against living a life for greed. 

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'The Killer'

THE KILLER | Official Trailer | Netflix - YouTube THE KILLER | Official Trailer | Netflix - YouTube
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Director David Fincher teams up again with "Se7en" screenwriter Andrew Kevin Walker, to give you an impression of what to expect in "The Killer." Michael Fassbender stars as the title character (and yup, that's all he goes by), whose life takes a turn when a hit goes wrong. After he discovers his girlfriend beaten up by unknown assailants, he goes on a mission to find them, one by one. 

However, Fassbender's character isn't relatable or even somewhat appealing, as you may expect from past movies that showcase an assassin character. He's a complete psychopath. This film is more about giving us a close look into the mind of this type of man and his cold, calculating actions while he's losing his mind.

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'The Gray Man'

THE GRAY MAN | Official Trailer | Netflix - YouTube THE GRAY MAN | Official Trailer | Netflix - YouTube
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If you're more into the Ryan Gosling of "Fall Guy" versus the Ryan Gosling of "Barbie," you'll appreciate his role in "The Gray Man." This film is based on a series of novels by Mark Greaney and is the first of many to be released. Gosling plays the CIA Agent, "Six," who joined the program after being recruited while in prison for murder. However, when an assassination goes wrong, Six goes on the run from Lloyd Hansen (Chris Evans), a former agent who was kicked out of the CIA for showing sociopathic tendencies.

You'll enjoy the fact that many of the lines in this movie were improvised, which gives the dialogue a realistic flair. Director brothers Anthony Russo and Joe Russo, known for their work on "The Avengers," have also announced they plan to have a sequel of the film

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'Baby Driver'

BABY DRIVER - Official Trailer (HD) - YouTube BABY DRIVER - Official Trailer (HD) - YouTube
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Edgar Wright wrote and directed "Baby Driver," a film about a young getaway driver who works for a crime boss and is about to get involved in a heist with no chance of success. Ansel Elgort stars as the character Baby, a passionate music lover who is partially impaired and wants to break free from his life of crime. He initially thinks he has gotten away from his life of crime; however, when his former boss threatens him in order to have him join him one more time. 

Elgort isn't the only star of this film, as there is also plenty of good acting by Jamie Foxx and Jon Hamm, among others. The movie was also nominated for several Oscars, which is no surprise. It's a high-quality and captivating action flick that breaks away from the mold of typical heist movies. 

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Nicole Pyles is a writer in Portland, Oregon. She loves movies, especially Lifetime movies, obscure TV movies, and disaster flicks. Her writing has been featured in Better Homes and Gardens, Mental Floss, WOW! Women on Writing, Ripley's Believe it or Not, and more. When she isn't watching movies, she's spending time with family, reading, and writing short stories. Say hi on Twitter @BeingTheWriter.

  • Rufionn
    If you’re a fan of The Gray Man novels, this movie is really bad. As with the Tom Cruise “Reacher” movies, someone really missed the mark - - - again.
    Perhaps if you haven’t read the books you’ll enjoy it, if you have, stay away.