Action movies have been around since the dawn of cinema and they still remain among the most popular movie-watching genres. With the incredible advancements in special effects and the refinement of stunts over the past two decades, action movies have kept up with with the times and remain as exhilarating as ever. So without further ado, let’s take a look at the most interesting action movies to watch now.

The Dark Knight Trilogy

The Dark Knight Trilogy is a crime-thriller series directed by Christopher Nolan and released between 2005 and 2012. It is arguably one of the greatest action movie trilogies of all time and consists of Batman Begins (2005), The Dark Knight (2008) and The Dark Knight Rises (2012).

Led by Christian Bale’s legendary performance as Batman, the trilogy focuses on Batman’s struggle against the corrupt and violent forces that dominate Gotham City while exploring his own identity and the nature of good and evil. Christopher Nolan’s unique vision and attention to detail helped bring the Batman universe to life and was praised by critics and fans alike.

The Matrix Trilogy

The Matrix Trilogy is a science-fiction series directed by the Wachowski Brothers and released between 1999 and 2003. It is one of the most influential and iconic action movie franchises of all time and consists of The Matrix (1999), The Matrix Reloaded (2003) and The Matrix Revolutions (2003).

Led by Keanu Reeves iconic performance as Neo, the trilogy centers around the fight between humans and machines in a future where machines have enslaved humans in a virtual reality called the Matrix. The Wachowskis broke boundaries with their ambitious visual style and philosophical themes and created a benchmark for modern mainstream action cinema.

John Wick Series

The John Wick Series is an action-thriller series directed by Chad Stahelski and released between 2014 and 2019. It is one of the most stylish and successful action movie franchises of all time and consists of John Wick (2014), John Wick: Chapter 2 (2017) and John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019).

Led by Keanu Reeves superb performance as John Wick, the series follows an ex-assassin who is forced back into the underworld and forced against his will to fight off a legion of killers while on the run. The stunts and action sequences in the John Wick series are some of the most impressive and thrilling of the past decade and firmly established the series as one of the best modern action franchises around.

The Mad Max Series

The Mad Max Series is a post-apocalyptic action movie series directed by George Miller and released between 1979 and 2015. It is one of the most influential action movie franchises of all time and consists of Mad Max (1979), The Road Warrior (1981), Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) and Mad Max: Fury Road (2015).

Led by the iconic performance of Mel Gibson as Max Rockatansky, the series follows his struggles in the world where civilization has collapsed and gangs have taken over the barren landscape. George Miller’s intense car-and-truck action sequences and his unique vision of a post-apocalyptic landscape made Mad Max one of the most influential action franchises of all time.

Mission: Impossible Series

The Mission: Impossible Series is an action-spy series directed by a variety of filmmakers and released between 1996 and 2018. It is one of the most successful action movie franchises of all time and consists of Mission: Impossible (1996), Mission: Impossible II (2000), Mission: Impossible III (2006), Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011), Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015) and Mission: Impossible – Fallout (2018).

Led by Tom Cruise’s charismatic performance as Ethan Hunt, the series follows him and his elite team of secret agents as they accomplish impossible missions for the mysterious secret organization IMF. The Mission: Impossible series pushed the boundaries of mainstream action cinema with its creative stunts and clever writing and was a critical and box office success for all seven movies.

Honorable Mentions

This list would not be complete without mentioning the following honorable mentions. Die Hard (1988) is the action movie classic starring Bruce Willis as New York cop John McClane and is arguably one of the greatest action movies of all time. The Raid (2011) is an Indonesian martial arts masterpiece directed by Gareth Evans and it is one of the most intense and exhilarating action movies ever made. The Terminator (1984) and Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) are two of the most influential science-fiction action classics directed by James Cameron and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as the titular character. Finally, Rush Hour (1998) and its two sequels (2001 and 2007) are a classic action franchise with crime-solving duo Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan at the center of the story.

Action movies are a cinematic staple that have evolved and changed over the decades. This list is a selection of some of the best, most exciting and interesting action movies to watch now. Whether you like epic superhero adventures, intense martial arts action, car-and-truck thrillers, or clever spy capers, this selection should have something for everyone. So put aside some time, grab some popcorn and start your action movie marathon!