We all watch movies, and which is the “best” is a matter of opinion really. Here are the top 10 action movies from 2000-2010. Don’t forget to check out other lists throughout Thought for Your Penny.
10. Live Free or Die Hard (2007) 82% at Rotten Tomatoes
Off-duty NYPD officer John McClane is the last person you’d want in real life roaming the streets. Yet he works in the Die Hard series, which was rebooted to much more acclaim than Indiana Jones.
Director: Len Wiseman
Starring: Bruce Willis, Justin Long, Timothy Olyphant
9. The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift (2006) 37% at Rotten Tomatoes
Easily the best film in the Fast and Furious franchise, Tokyo Drift introduces us to Han, has amazing drift race scenes, and is everything sparkly and colorful about cars. Sure, Lil Bow Wow is in it (along with the older son from Home Improvement), but it’s highly watchable, even today.
Director: Justin Lin
Starring: Lucas Black, Shad Moss, Sung Kang
8. Kill Bill: Volume 2 (2004) 85% at Rotten Tomatoes
Although Harvey Weinstein being outed as a sexual predator dealt a blow to his entire catalog, watching Uma Thurman’s Bride finally kill…well, Bill (David Carradine, whose sexual disease ended much different than Weinstein’s) is still a great cinematic moment.
Director: Quentin Tarantino
Starring: Uma Thurman, Daryl Hannah, Michael Madsen
7. The Bourne Ultimatum (2007) 93% at Rotten Tomatoes
The Bourne series from Robert Ludlum is action-packed and leaves most other spy series in the dust. It’s the third film in the series, like Tokyo Drift, and proves to be the most watchable over time. Damon’s amnesiac secret agent continues searching for clues to his past.
Director: Paul Greengrass
Starring: Matt Damon, Joan Allen, Edgar Ramirez
6. Pitch Black (2000) 57% at Rotten Tomatoes
Riddick is the character Diesel was born to play, and Pitch Black is the movie that started a trilogy. It’s dark, tense, and full of sci-fi goodness when a small crew is stuck on a planet during a long night with a prisoner who may be their only hope for survival.
Director: David Twohy
Starring: Vin Diesel, Radha Mitchell, Cole Hauser
5. Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005) 59% at Rotten Tomatoes
Pitt and Jolie met and fell in love during the filming of this amazing spy thriller that takes True Lies to the next level. When Mr. and Mrs. Smith find out they’re competing spies, it’s not long before they’re sent to kill each other and must either do so or band together to survive against all odds.
Director: Doug Liman
Starring: Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, Adam Brody
4. Mission: Impossible III (2006) 70% at Rotten Tomatoes
Tom Cruise practically invented the modern popcorn action flick, and this third installment of the Mission: Impossible series stands out for the inclusion of the late great Seymour Hoffman. He’s a terrifying villain who really puts Ethan’s team through a loop.
Director: J.J. Abrams
Starring: Tom Cruise Michelle Monaghan, Philip Seymour Hoffman
3. Bangkok Dangerous (2008) 8% at Rotten Tomatoes
Nicolas Cage doesn’t get the credit he deserves for this low-key action movie. The beautiful scenery, exotic locale, and on-point action scenes make it an artistic action adventure that checks all the right boxes.
Director: Danny Pang, Oxide Chun Pang
Starring: Nicolas Cage, Charlie Yeung, Shahkrit Yamnarm
2. Man on Fire (2004) 39% at Rotten Tomatoes
Denzel Washington is a badass on screen, and there’s no better place to witness him in action than Man on Fire. Tearing through an underground Mexican cartel as though it wasn’t even a problem, you can’t help but root for his ruthlessness. Gets better every time I watch it.
Director: Tony Scott
Starring: Denzel Washington, Dakota Fanning, Christopher Walken
1. Ip Man (2008) 84% at Rotten Tomatoes
There are a ton of great martial arts movies (it’ll be a list of its own soon enough), but none have as much mainstream appeal as Ip Man. The tale of a respected martial arts teacher forced to fight for survival during the Japanese invasion is a bingeworthy trilogy that starts right here.
Director: Wilson Yip
Starring: Donnie Yen, Siu-Wong Fan, Simon Yam