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Like Monkey Man? Then watch these 3 action movies now

A man looks through a screen in Monkey Man.

After an exciting premiere at South by Southwest, Monkey Man is finally hitting theaters this weekend. The film marks the directorial debut of Dev Patel, who co-wrote the screenplay with Paul Angunawela and John Collee. Patel also stars as Kid, a man who makes a living as a masked fighter in an underground fight club. After his mother’s death, Kid embarks on a mission to find and kill her murderers, leading him down a path of vengeance and destruction.

Monkey Man is the latest addition to the action thriller genre. It’s one of our most anticipated movies of spring 2024. These films are typically gory, brutal, and violent, but highly entertaining in the end. If you enjoyed Monkey Man, then watch these three films. Our selections include the fourth film in one of Hollywood’s best franchises, an iconic movie from the early 2000s, and a stylish neo-noir.

John Wick: Chapter 4 (2023)

John looks at Akira in "John Wick: Chapter 4."
Lionsgate / Lionsgate

When the Monkey Man trailer dropped, it immediately drew comparisons to John Wick. Monkey Man even pays homage to John Wick by mentioning Keanu Reeves’s iconic assassin when Patel’s character attempts to buy a gun. Many of you have probably seen John Wick. But why not revisit the most recent entry in the franchise, John Wick: Chapter 4?

After the events in the third film, John Wick (Reeves) is determined to take down the entire High Table. To stop John, High Table member Marquis Vincent Bisset de Gramont (Bill Skarsgård) is tasked with killing Wick. With unlimited resources from the High Table, de Gramont puts a huge bounty on John’s head. Every assassin comes out of the woodwork to kill John. However, this is Baba Yaga we’re talking about. John is the most dangerous man with a gun. He is the Grim Reaper, and his target is the High Table.

Stream John Wick: Chapter 4 on Starz.

Oldboy (2003)

Choi Min-sik wielding a hammer in Oldboy.
Show East / Show East

In an interview with Total Film, Patel cited Oldboy, the 2003 Korean revenge thriller, as one of his inspirations for Monkey Man. Patel describes Oldboy as an amazing action film featuring a brooding man wearing a suit.” Patel is correct in praising Oldboy, a violent action movie now streaming on Netflix.

Directed by the great Park Chan-wook, Oldboy stars Choi Min-sik as Oh Dae-su, a man originally arrested for public drunkenness. However, Dae-su is kidnapped and imprisoned in a hotel room cell. One of the only items in his room is a television, which informs Dae-su of his wife’s murder. Dae-su is named the prime suspect in the murder case. To pass the time, Dae-su teaches himself martial arts. After 15 years in the hotel room, Dae-su is suddenly released. He then sets out to find his captors by any means necessary, including violent fighting tactics. For any action fan, Oldboy is a must-watch.

Stream Oldboy on Netflix.

Drive (2011)

Ryan Gosling sits behind the wheel of a car.

Monkey Man features one relentless man on a deadly mission. Another effective “man on a mission” movie is Drive, Nicolas Winding Refn’s 2011 action neo-noir starring Ryan Gosling. A man known as The Driver (Gosling) knows everything there is to know about cars. The Driver works as a Hollywood stunt double mechanic. This man is at his best behind the wheel, which makes him the perfect getaway driver for criminals. The stoic and tight-lipped Driver finds comfort in his neighbor, Irene (Carey Mulligan), and her young son, Benicio (Kaden Leos).

After Irene’s husband, Standard (Oscar Isaac), gets out of prison, the Driver helps him get a job to pay off a debt. The job is a setup, resulting in tragedy. With Irene and Benicio in danger, the Driver goes to great lengths to protect his new friends by hunting down the criminals who set him up. Don’t be surprised if you’re saying “I drive” and “literally me” by the end of Drive.

Rent Drive on Prime Video, YouTube, Google, and Apple.

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Dan Girolamo
Dan is a passionate and multitalented content creator with experience in pop culture, entertainment, and sports. Throughout…
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