Five Movies To Watch When You’re Done With “The Gray Man”

Credit: The Gray Man

The American action thriller film The Gray Man premiered on the streaming platform Netflix last July 22. It is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, from a screenplay, the latter co-wrote with Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely. The film is based on the 2009 novel of the same name by Mark Greaney. It stars Ryan Gosling, Chris Evans, Ana de Armas, Jessica Henwick, Regé-Jean Page, Wagner Moura, Julia Butters, Dhanush, Alfre Woodard, and Billy Bob Thornton. The plot follows Court Gentry (Gosling), a former CIA operative who is targeted for assassination by Lloyd Hanson (Evans), a sociopathic mercenary who is hired by Gentry’s former employer. As Hanson sets out to track down and kill Gentry, the latter must use all of his skills and knowledge to stay one step ahead of his nemesis.

Credit: The Gray Man

In a review by Common Sense Media, they praised the lead performances especially for Evan’s surprising villain role saying, “It features solid performances by Gosling and Thornton, but the true gem of the movie is Evans, who transforms from Marvel’s wholesome Captain America into a sadistic, gleeful, disturbingly charismatic villain. His performance will make you want to see him cast as villains more often, since his “good guy” looks and charm provide another layer of sinister to evil characters.”

Credit: The Gray Man

If you’re looking for other action-packed spy movies to watch after The Gray Man, here are five movies we recommend watching.

Salt

Salt is a 2010 American action thriller film directed by Phillip Noyce, written by Kurt Wimmer, and starring Angelina Jolie, Liev Schreiber, Daniel Olbrychski, August Diehl, and Chiwetel Ejiofor. Jolie plays Evelyn Salt, who is accused of being a Russian sleeper agent, and goes on the run to try to clear her name. Lorenzo di Bonaventura and Sunila Mehta produced the film. In the film, Salt’s loyalty to her country is tested when she is falsely accused of being a Russian sleeper agent. She must use all of her skills and training to stay one step ahead of her pursuers and find the real traitor. Salt was released in the United States on July 23, 2010, and grossed $293 million worldwide.

The Guardian published a review of the film and wrote, “Evelyn Salt is not merely a super-fit martial-arts ninja but a mistress of disguise: hilariously, she even at one point passes herself off as a man – a lean, wiry, smallish guy with a toothy smile and mop of hair. Short of carrying around the complete works of L Ron Hubbard, the homage couldn’t be made clearer. Very entertaining stuff.”

Bourne Identity

The Bourne Identity is a 2002 action-thriller film based on Robert Ludlum’s 1980 novel. It was directed and co-produced by Doug Liman and written by Tony Gilroy and William Blake Herron. It stars Matt Damon as Jason Bourne, a man suffering from psychogenic amnesia who is attempting to discover his identity amidst a clandestine conspiracy within the CIA. The film also features Franka Potente, Chris Cooper, Clive Owen, Brian Cox, Walton Goggins, and Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje in supporting roles. The Bourne Identity was generally well-received by critics, who praised its direction, acting, screenplay, editing, and visuals. It spawned several sequels: The Bourne Supremacy (2004), The Bourne Ultimatum (2007), The Bourne Legacy (2012), and Jason Bourne (2016).

In a review by Empire, they praised the film’s action sequences and wrote, “Nothing in The Bourne Identity stands up to close examination, but that doesn’t stop it being a rollicking blockbuster ride and perfect Saturday night fodder. Spectacular stunts, enough twists and turns to keep the audience guessing, and Matt Damon delivering as an action hero.”

Skyfall

The 2012 spy film Skyfall is the twenty-third in the James Bond series produced by Eon Productions. It stars Daniel Craig as fictional MI6 agent James Bond and features Javier Bardem as Raoul Silva, the villain, and Judi Dench as M. It was directed by Sam Mendes and written by Neal Purvis, Robert Wade, and John Logan. The story centers on Bond investigating an attack on MI6 that led to the identity of undercover agents around the world being exposed. Aided only by a field agent, Bond tracks down a man from M’s past who plans to take revenge on M.

The movie received positive reviews, with critics praising performances, Mendes’s direction, Roger Deakins’s cinematography, Thomas Newman’s score, and the action sequences. Skyfall was nominated for five Academy Awards winning Best Original Song for Adele’s theme song “Skyfall”.

The New York Times gave particular praise to the actors’ performances saying, “As Bond sprints from peril to pleasure, Mr. Craig and the other players — including an exceptional, wittily venal Javier Bardem, a sleek Ralph Fiennes and a likable Ben Whishaw — turn out to be the most spectacular of Mr. Mendes’s special effects.”

The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is a 2015 spy film directed by Guy Ritchie and written by Ritchie and Lionel Wigram. It is based on the 1964 MGM television series of the same name, which was created by Norman Felton and Sam Rolfe. The film stars Henry Cavill, Armie Hammer, Alicia Vikander, Elizabeth Debicki, and Hugh Grant. CIA agent Napoleon Solo (Henry Cavill) and KGB agent Illya Kuryakin (Armie Hammer) are forced to work together to stop a mysterious criminal organization in their tracks. The two agents must learn to trust each other if they are going to stand any chance of completing their mission and saving the world from a nuclear threat.

Rolling Stone praised the film’s retro-style take on spy films and wrote, “Look at The Man From U.N.C.L.E., a moldy 1960s TV series that comes to the screen with no Mission: Impossible update or makeover. That’s right — it’s still moldy. But in a good way. Mostly. Director Guy Ritchie (Snatch, Sherlock Holmes) is dishing out the same Cold War spycraft audiences ate up when James Bond was a pup.”

Anna

Anna is a 2019 action thriller film written, produced, and directed by Luc Besson. The film stars Sasha Luss alongside Luke Evans, Cillian Murphy, Helen Mirren, and Alexander Petrov. Anna Poliatova is a beautiful but deadly young woman who was trained by the Soviet Union to be a spy and assassin. When the Soviet Union collapses, Anna uses her skills to survive in the new world order. She quickly becomes one of the most sought-after killers in the business, working for anyone who can pay her price. But when a group of powerful men hires her to kill a political figure, Anna finds herself in the middle of a conspiracy that could change the course of history. With enemies on all sides, Anna must use all her skills to stay alive and uncover the truth behind the plot against her target. Anna is a pulse-pounding thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end.

Variety published a review of Anna and wrote, “if you’re a fan of Besson’s slick, comic book-style approach (he storyboards complex scenes with a logical elegance that makes them clean and intuitive to follow), then “Anna” is bound to entertain.”

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