The British crime thriller film Bull, written and directed by Paul Andrew Williams, had its premiere in theaters late last year and will be arriving on digital platforms on April 8. The film stars Neil Maskell as the titular character Bull and features David Hayman, Tamzin Outhwaite, and Lois Brabin-Platt in supporting roles. The plot centers on former gang member Bull who returns after a 10-year exile and seeks revenge on the people who betrayed him, including his father-in-law, and attempts to be reunited with his son.
The film received generally positive reviews and praise for Maskell’s performance. In The Guardian’s review, they wrote, “Bull, which earns every last moment of its 18 certificate, is no ordinary revenge movie. A redemption story populated by wholly irredeemable characters, it’s the kind of savage storytelling that nails you to your seat and leaves you – and most of the supporting cast – thoroughly roughed up.” Los Angeles Times commended the main actors’ performance in the film saying, “Neil Maskell gives a riveting performance as the title character, a mob lackey and loving father who goes after his former boss and father-in-law Norm (David Hayman) when the old man interferes with Bull’s attempt to take custody of his son.” If you were hooked with Bull as much as we were and you’re looking for the next action-packed movie for your weekend, here are five of our recommendations that mostly involve revenge in the plot and great action sequence.
The 2014 action thriller film John Wick, the first installment in the John Wick franchise, starring Keanu Reeves, is on top of our list when it comes to action revenge movies. The film was directed by Chad Stahelski, in his directorial debut with a screenplay by Derek Kolstad. The cast also includes Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen, Adrianne Palicki, Bridget Moynahan, Dean Winters, Ian McShane, John Leguizamo, and Willem Dafoe. The film follows retired assassin John Wick (Reeves) who has been grieving the loss of her wife. When a group of mobsters breaks into his house, they steal his car and kill the puppy which was his wife’s last gift to him. The unforeseen events push Wick to seek vengeance and send him back to his assassin ways. The film received generally positive reviews and was a commercial success. It was followed by two sequels, John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017), and John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019), and a fourth installment, John Wick: Chapter 4, is set to release on March 2023. The Guardian published a review of the film and wrote, “When you think you’ve seen John Wick twist in the most acrobatic way to blast the baddie sneaking up behind him, he’ll strike another pose that tops it.” They added, “So much recent action cinema feels the need to be gritty, realistic and dark. John Wick is the fun alternative we’ve been waiting for.”
The 2021 American action thriller comedy film Nobody, directed by Ilya Naishuller and written by Derek Kolstad, who also wrote John Wick, shares a similar plot to Bull involving revenge and family business. The film stars Bob Odenkirk, Connie Nielsen, RZA, Christopher Lloyd, and Aleksey Serebryakov. The plot centers on Hutch Mansell, the patriarch of a suburbian family who fails to defend his family from thieves during a break-in at their home. The aftermath of the incident haunts Hutch and it unleashes his true character which he has kept from his family. This however entangles him in a conflict with a Russian crime boss. In Empire’s review, they praised Odenkirk in his performance saying, “With Better Call Saul about to come to an end, Odenkirk switches gears with admirable ease, anchoring one of the most purely enjoyable action movies in ages. It’s not quite a case of Nobody does it better, but it’ll do until somebody does.”
In the film Bull, the titular character attempts to be reunited with his son as he seeks revenge. Similar to the film Bull, the 2008 action-thriller film Taken follows a father who strives to be reunited with her daughter. The film was written by Luc Besson and Robert Mark Kamen, and directed by Pierre Morel. It stars Liam Neeson, Maggie Grace, Famke Janssen, Katie Cassidy, Leland Orser, and Holly Valance. The plot centers on retired CIA agent Bryan Mills (Neeson) who sets to save his daughter and her best friend after they are kidnapped by a human trafficking syndicate while traveling in France. The Independent Critic published a review of the film praising the director and describing the thrill provided by the film. “To the credit of director Pierre Morel, “Taken” moves along swiftly and is seldom boring. Morel keeps the action going at a top-notch rate, much as he did with the far more enjoyable “District B13.
The Man from Nowhere
The 2010 South Korean action thriller film The Man from Nowhere starring Won Bin provides the same thrill that will keep you on the edge of your seat. The film was written and directed by Lee Jeong-beom and it follows the story of former secret agent Tae-shik who sets out to save a young girl named So-mi who he has befriended and was kidnapped by a gang involved in drug smuggling. Variety praised Won’s performance in the film saying, “Won reinvents himself here as an action star, revitalizing the thesp’s career that was recently put on hold due to his military service. With bangs obscuring most of his face and a mannered, guarded attitude that hides his character’s sentimental motives, Won is commanding, and always seems ready to explode.”
Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and 2
Another revenge film that is worth watching is the two-part revenge epic, Kill Bill, written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. The plot follows a former assassin played by Uma Thurman who seeks revenge on her former co-assassins and their leader Bill after their murder spree on her wedding day, killing everyone in the wedding including her unborn child. The film also stars Lucy Liu, Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah, Vivica A. Fox and David Carradine. New York Times published a review of the film describing the eccentric mix of the film saying, “There are some strong and diverse flavors, as well as vivid colors in the mix, all of them deftly reflected in the hip-hop artist RZA’s clever, eclectic score. Mr. Tarantino samples the lurid hues of spaghetti westerns, the deep-fried funk of 70’s blaxploitation, and above all the graceful and kinetic mayhem of Asian action movies, from Hong Kong-style martial arts to samurai swordplay to hard-boiled gangster anime.”
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