Where do you go to get your action film fix? If you’re a Hulu subscriber, then you’re going to be well-served in this genre. Unlike its corporate sibling, Disney+, Hulu can give fans the R-rated explosions, violence, stunts, and thrills that they’ve been craving. But if you need some family-friendly action, there are some PG-13 selections to tide you over. Hulu has even started making action flicks of its own, which hold up pretty well against their big studio counterparts. Altogether, it’s a very solid lineup. To get the most out of your subscription, check out the best action movies on Hulu.
Rogue makes a strong case for Megan Fox’s transformation into an action star. Fox headlines the movie as Samantha O’Hara, the leader of a group of mercenaries that includes Joey Kasinski (Philip Winchester), Mike Barasa (Greg Kriek as), and Pata (Sisanda Henna). Sam’s team is hired to rescue Asilia Wilson (Jessica Sutton), the daughter of a local governor, from a warlord named Zalamm (Adam Deacon). While fleeing Zalamm’s forces, Samantha and her team encounter a murderous lioness who may truly be the queen of the wild. And this lioness is far more deadly than their bullets or their gadgets.
Rotten Tomatoes: 70%
Stars: Megan Fox, Philip Winchester, Greg Kriek, Jessica Sutton, Calli Taylor
Director: M. J. Bassett
Runtime: 105 minutes
Nearly a decade ago, Daniel Craig had his best turn as James Bond in Skyfall. It has an unusually personal story for a Bond film, as James’ family history plays heavily into Skyfall itself. There are also high stakes for M (Judi Dench) and MI6 as former operative Raoul Silva (Javier Bardem) uses his technical skills to leak valuable secrets and expose undercover officers. Bond reluctantly comes out of his self-imposed retirement, but he’s far from full-strength. No matter where they go, Raoul is always on their trail. To save M, James will have to confront his own personal ghosts at his family’s ancestral home.
Rotten Tomatoes: 92%
Stars: Daniel Craig, Judi Dench, Javier Bardem, Ralph Fiennes, Naomie Harris, Bérénice Marlohe
Director: Sam Mendes
Runtime: 143 minutes
Chloë Grace Moretz takes the lead in Shadow in the Cloud, a film that is both a World War II story and a tale of terror. Moretz portrays Maude Garrett, a flying officer on a mission to transport special cargo on a B-17 bomber. While Staff Sergeant Walter Quaid (Taylor John Smith) treats Maude with respect, the rest of the crew seems openly hostile toward her. To complicate things even further, Maude also spots a creature that is seemingly sabotaging the plane. But it’s Maude’s personal secrets that may end her mission well before the creature can imperil the mission.
Rotten Tomatoes: 78%
Stars: Chloë Grace Moretz, Taylor John Smith, Beulah Koale, Nick Robinson, Callan Mulvey
Director: Roseanne Liang
Runtime: 83 minutes
The future is what you make it, but it wasn’t a good one for Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton). In Terminator: Dark Fate, Sarah is haunted by the death of her son at the hands of a rogue T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger). Much to Sarah’s surprise, history seems to be repeating itself when a cyborg warrior, Grace (Mackenzie Davis), comes back in time to protect Dani Ramos (Natalia Reyes) from the advanced Terminator, Rev-9 (Gabriel Luna). But even these formidable women are overpowered by the Rev-9’s abilities. That’s why they turn to an unexpected source for help: The Terminator who killed John. Unfortunately, “Carl” is far more human than he used to be and less than a match for his younger counterpart.
Rotten Tomatoes: 70%
Stars: Linda Hamilton, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mackenzie Davis, Natalia Reyes, Gabriel Luna
Director: Tim Miller
Runtime: 128 minutes
Considered one of the best superhero movies ever made, and perhaps the definitive cinematic depiction of Batman, The Dark Knight is the masterpiece of Christopher Nolan’s trilogy. (All of which are available to stream on Hulu.) After the events of Batman Begins, Bruce Wayne (Christian Bale) has fully embraced the alter-ego of Batman, fighting to clean Gotham’s streets of organized crime. However, vigilante justice can’t reign forever, and with the help of allies Lt. Jim Gordon (Gary Oldman) and district attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart), he aims to soon turn the city over to a better justice system. But when a young, criminal chaos agent calling himself the Joker (Heath Ledger) plunges the city into terror and turns its residents against one another, Batman is forced to toe a fine line between heroism and vigilantism and re-examine his moral philosophies.
Rotten Tomatoes: 94%
Stars: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Gary Oldman
Director: Christopher Nolan
Runtime: 152 minutes
Based on Mark Millar’s graphic novels, Kick-Ass follows nerdy teenager Dave Lizewski (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) who uses his love of comics as inspiration to reinvent himself as a superhero. Dubbing himself “Kick-Ass,” Dave hits the streets to fight crime, despite lacking any special powers. Naturally, he mostly gets his ass kicked. But when he joins forces with the father/daughter vigilante team of Big Daddy (Nicolas Cage) and Hit-Girl (Chloe Grace Moretz), he soon finds himself at the center of a high-stakes war with a mobster.
Rotten Tomatoes: 76%
Stars: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Chloe Grace Moretz, Nicolas Cage
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Runtime: 117 minutes
In the mood for some gratuitously gory Grindhouse fun? Well, may we please present Robert Rodriguez’s Machete. Danny Trejo stars as the title character, a former Mexican Federale wandering the Texas streets as a vigilante and sometimes day laborer after nearly being killed by a powerful drug lord. When he’s hired to perform a covert hit, Machete is double-crossed and forced to go on the run. Despite being down, Machete is never out, and he goes on one hell of a violent rampage to settle the score.
Rotten Tomatoes: 72%
Stars: Danny Trejo, Robert De Niro, Jessica Alba
Director: Robert Rodriguez
Runtime: 104 minutes
Predator spawned such an insanely popular franchise, it got spun into a franchise with the alien from Aliens for a super-monster slugfest. But really, none of those spinoffs add up to the classic original. Arnold Schwarzenegger stars as Dutch, a mercenary hired by the U.S. government to rescue a group of politicians trapped in Guatemala. But when Dutch and his team land in Central America, they discover something is extremely wrong. They keep finding dead bodies, slowly coming to realize they’re being hunted by a brutal alien creature with superhuman strength and elite camouflaging abilities … The Predator.
Rotten Tomatoes: 81%
Stars: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Jesse Ventura
Director: John McTiernan
Runtime: 107 minutes
One of the most terrifying (and provocative) zombie movies of recent memory, Train to Busan is absolutely electric from start to finish. In the midst of a zombie outbreak, a man, his estranged daughter, and a group of passengers are trapped on a speeding train in South Korea. While it shares elements of popular action movies like Speed, 28 Days Later, and Snowpiercer, Train to Busan is wholly unique in its pulse-pounding madness.
Rotten Tomatoes: 94%
Stars: Gong Yoo, Choi Woo-shik, Ma Dong-seok
Director: Yeon Sang-ho
Runtime: 118 minutes
One of the better zombie movies of recent memory, Danny Boyle’s 28 Days Later is extremely intense and offers all the thrills you could hope for. After a group of misguided animal rights activists free a caged chimpanzee infected with a “Rage” virus, it sets off a chain reaction, spreading the incurable, deeply contagious virus across England. London bike courier Jim (Cillian Murphy) awakes from a coma a month later to find the city all but empty — until he stumbles across the manic, zombie-like victims of Rage. Rescued by a group of survivors, Jim and his newfound friends must travel across the country to find any hope of salvation.
Rotten Tomatoes: 87%
Stars: Cillian Murphy, Noah Huntley, Naomie Harris
Director: Danny Boyle
Runtime: 112 minutes
Hulu does have the 1995 adaptation of the Judge Dredd comic with Sylvester Stallone in the title role. But the 2012 film, Dredd, is by far the superior of the two. This time, Karl Urban steps into the role of Dredd, one of the Judges tasked with keeping Mega-City One safe in the future. Olivia Thirlby nearly steals the entire movie as Cassandra Anderson, a rookie judge whose telepathic abilities prove to be quite an asset. While investigating a few brazen drug murders, Dredd and Anderson are trapped in an apartment complex by its resident crime lord, Madeline “Ma-Ma” Madrigal (Game of Thrones‘ Lena Headey). But Ma-Ma forgot the most important things about Dredd: “He is the law,” and he will never back down from a fight.
Rotten Tomatoes: 79%
Stars: Karl Urban, Olivia Thirlby, Wood Harris, Lena Headey
Director: Pete Travis
Runtime: 95 minutes
In Boss Level, Frank Grillo’s Roy Pulver dies almost as soon as the movie begins. Then it all happens again, again, and again. That’s the problem for the ex-Delta Force soldier. Someone wants Roy dead, and he would already be gone if he wasn’t stuck in a time loop. Fortunately for Roy, he’s been trapped for so long that he’s been able to anticipate the moves of his would-be assassins. Regardless, the odds are stacked against Roy as he tries to break the loop and save his ex-wife, Jemma Wells (Naomi Watts), from a dire fate. Each trip through the loop gives Roy more experience and intel. But is it enough for him to change his fate and escape with Jemma?
Rotten Tomatoes: 76%
Stars: Frank Grillo, Naomi Watts, Mel Gibson, Annabelle Wallis
Director: Joe Carnahan
Runtime: 94 minutes
The Nice Guys was criminally underrated during its theatrical run. But it’s ready to be rediscovered by action fans on Hulu. The story is set in 1977, as private investigator Holland March (Ryan Gosling) looks into the suspicious death of a porn star. After an enforcer named Jackson Healy (Russell Crowe) breaks Holland’s arm and tries to scare him off, the two men form an unlikely partnership to track down a teenage girl, Amelia Kuttner (Margaret Qualley). Amelia may hold the key to unraveling this mystery, but Holland and Jackson have to get her before the bad guys do.
Rotten Tomatoes: 91%
Stars: Russell Crowe, Ryan Gosling, Angourie Rice, Matt Bomer, Margaret Qualley
Director: Shane Black
Runtime: 116 minutes
Hotel Mumbai is inspired by the true story of the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai. That’s why there are no action heroes here, and the violence feels all-too-real. Zahra Kashani (Nazanin Boniadi), her husband, David (Armie Hammer), and the rest of the guests at the Taj Hotel are held hostage by terrorists. Yet even in this hopeless situation, heroes emerge. For example, Arjun (Dev Patel), a waiter who risks his life to help the guests escape. Not everyone makes it out alive, but the spark of humanity demonstrated by the ordinary people triumphs over the senseless murders and the overwhelming despair that follows.
Rotten Tomatoes: 76%
Stars: Armie Hammer, Dev Patel, Nazanin Boniadi, Tilda Cobham-Hervey, Anupam Kher
Director: Anthony Maras
Runtime: 125 minutes
The Mission: Impossible films are almost always terrific, but Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol is a cut above the rest. Animator Brad Bird made his live-action directorial debut with this film, as Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt was dragged into another global crisis. Ethan’s IMF team is framed for a bombing in Russia, which forces them to go underground without any official backup. Ethan can trust his old friend, Benji Dunn (Simon Pegg). However, Ethan is less sure about his new allies, William Brandt (Jeremy Renner) and Jane Carter (Paula Patton). William is holding on to secrets of his own, while Jane’s thirst for vengeance may jeopardize the entire mission.
Rotten Tomatoes: 94%
Stars: Tom Cruise, Jeremy Renner, Simon Pegg, Paula Patton
Director: Brad Bird
Runtime: 133 minutes
Think of The Expendables as the Avengers of action stars. It’s almost an all-icon cast even before Bruce Willis and Arnold Schwarzenegger make their cameo appearances. Sylvester Stallone directed the film and stars as Barney Ross, the leader of an elite group of mercenaries that includes Lee Christmas (Jason Statham), Yin Yang (Jet Li), and Gunner Jensen (Dolph Lundgren). On a mission to take out a foreign dictator, Barney and his team realize that their real target may be rogue CIA agent James Munroe (Eric Roberts). And one of Barney’s former members may be working for the other side.
Rotten Tomatoes: 42%
Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Eric Roberts, Randy Couture, Steve Austin, Charisma Carpenter
Director: Sylvester Stallone
Runtime: 103 minutes
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