Movies To Watch If You Loved Fast & Furious 9

As "F9" roared into theaters, viewers both casual and devoted feverishly caught up on the Fast & Furious franchise's oddly complex lore and timeline. But once you're finished with NOS, Coronas, and the overbearing themes of family, you may want to find other movies that maintain the adrenaline rush that the Fast & Furious movies provide.

"F9" is defined by its strange mix of genres, combining heist, spy, and car action to create the high reality that the Fast & Furious series thrives on. Director Justin Lin previously directed the third, fourth, fifth, and sixth entries of the series, bringing touches such as smooth camerawork to the absurd car action and adding intense hand-to-hand fight sequences. If you're looking for action flicks that fit with the genre mix that "F9" embodies, or if you want to watch action films that borrow Lin's smooth and kinetic directorial style, the following movies make for good supplemental watching.

Star Trek Beyond

For more of Justin Lin's work, look no further than "Star Trek Beyond," the blockbuster that came before "F9." The venerable Star Trek franchise took a turn towards action in J.J. Abrams' reboot, and traditional fans were worried when a Fast & Furious mainstay took the reins for the third installment in a series that had already diverged from classic Trek. While the initial trailer featured "Sabotage" by the Beastie Boys over some action shots of Chris Pine as Captain Kirk on a motorcycle, both of which seemed uncharacteristic for the franchise, Lin's kinetic direction meshed well with Simon Pegg and Doug Jung's trope-heavy screenplay, creating an experience that both action fans and Star Trek die-hards enjoyed.

"Star Trek Beyond" sees the USS Enterprise destroyed by a villainous figure named Krall (Idris Elba). With the crew grounded and separated on a mysterious planet, our favorite Starfleet members have to fight to survive while also stopping a plot to destroy a highly populated, multicultural space station. With strong characterization and entertaining ensemble moments like those found in "F9," the strange marriage between Fast and Trek turned out to be a beneficial one.

The Italian Job

Most remakes fail to iterate on the original films they're based on, but "The Italian Job" showed how to make a sleek, modern-day ensemble heist film. Starring Mark Walhberg, Charlize Theron, and Jason Statham, the latter two of whom worked with director F. Gary Gray on "The Fate of the Furious," "The Italian Job" tells a story about a heist team that gets back together in order to get revenge on the back-stabbing colleague (Edward Norton) who killed their mentor (Donald Sutherland) on his last job.

Watching "The Italian Job," it's obvious why Gray eventually made his way to the Fast franchise — this remake has a cast of very distinct characters who bounce off of each other, a light-hearted tone, and lots of car-based action. Actors Seth Green and Mos Def in particular provide some levity; every ensemble needs to have some lighter characters in them. The production also made extensive use of practical effects and on-location shooting, and the cars themselves are quite shiny and fast — it would be unsurprising if "Fast Five" looked to "The Italian Job" for inspiration.

Mission: Impossible — Fallout

The "Mission: Impossible" series has gone through a similar trajectory as the "Fast & Furious" franchise, featuring early entries that were liked but still run-of-the-mill before undergoing a transformation midway through its lifespan and becoming a franchise full of must-watch blockbusters. "Mission: Impossible — Fallout" is the latest in the series, and this sixth entry has by far the most lengthy and elaborate setpieces. Most blockbuster tent poles are structured with major action scenes in mind, with the plot generally coming after. But in "Fallout," the big moments blend so seamlessly with each other that the action feels relentless and non-stop.

In trying to stop a megalomaniac from detonating two nuclear bombs, Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) ends up performing amazing feats and dangerous stunts, including HALO jumping during a thunderstorm, a brutal hand-to-hand combat scene in a bathroom, driving a motorcycle against traffic in Paris, and climbing a rope to reach a helicopter. Hunt is aided by an ensemble of recurring characters played by Simon Pegg, Ving Rhames, and Rebecca Ferguson, with Henry Cavill joining the cast as a rival agent who's less of a man, and more a force of nature. While the previous "Mission: Impossible" films are worth taking a look at, "Fallout" stands alone if you want to begin at the high point.

Mad Max: Fury Road

When recommending action movies, "Max Mad: Fury Road" is an obvious one to bring up. Continuing from and revitalizing an old series, "Fury Road" has both critical and fan adoration and Oscar statues to back up its stellar reputation. With Tom Hardy taking over as Max, a wandering Man with No Name-type figure, viewers experience both incredible action sequences and dense world-building through his character's eyes. From the oppressive society built by Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne) to all of the War Boys' strange traditions and off-the-rails lingo, "Fury Road" is packed with lore.

But people come to "Mad Max" for the car-based action, and the film as a whole is essentially a long chase sequence full of unbelievable stunts and plenty of explosions. At 70 years old, director George Miller showed Hollywood's younger filmmakers how action is done, capturing all of the madness with careful camerawork and precise editing, and combining impressive practical stunts with CGI touch-ups and improvements. And on top of everything else, Max himself is overshadowed by Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron), who has become an icon in her own right.

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

Director Guy Ritchie is best known for ensemble crime films like "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" and "Snatch," but he took a stab at the spy genre with "The Man from U.N.C.L.E.," a loose adaptation of the '60s television show of the same name. Starring Henry Cavill as a CIA agent and Armie Hammer as a KGB operative, this film is more of a "Hobbs & Shaw" buddy film than a Fast & Furious romp, though it still features strong characters and a number of slick action setpieces.

The two leads butt heads and are forced to work with each other to stop a nuclear plot by a wealthy socialite (Elizabeth Debicki). One memorable action sequence sees Hammer overtaken by guards in an intense boat chase, while Cavill watches in the foreground and eats a sandwich. Several moments in "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." carry that humorous tone; the film is just as funny as it is action-packed. Although "The Man from U.N.C.L.E." didn't become part of a huge franchise like many of its contemporaries, Ritchie's film is considered to be a cult classic, often held up favorably next to other modern action films and sparking demand for a sequel.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

The second film in the "Captain America" trilogy transformed Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) from a boy scout who can do cool flips into a human weapon trained in various forms of combat. In directing "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," Anthony and Joe Russo used their experience playing with and reverse-engineering action genres on "Community" to create an action film inspired by '70s political thrillers that just happens to take place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

In "Captain America: The Winter Soldier," Rogers is on the run from a corrupted S.H.I.E.L.D., while he and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) are pursued by a mysterious assassin called the Winter Soldier. The film contains the most brutal hand-to-hand combat of any of the MCU films, with dynamic camerawork bolstering the practical stunt work. There's also a thrilling car chase sequence featuring Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) that takes place in the streets of Washington D.C. While "The Winter Soldier" may come with a lot of continuity-related baggage, it still stands alone as a tight, solid action movie with touches of espionage and politics.

Baby Driver

Anyone who watches "Fast & Furious" purely for the car action needs to put "Baby Driver" on their watchlist. Directed by Edgar Wright of the Cornetto Trilogy and "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World" fame, "Baby Driver" exhibits all of Wright's stylistic tendencies, including fast-cutting and thrilling action. Starring Ansel Elgort as a getaway driver named Baby, this licensed music-heavy film features car sequences synced up to popular songs, making it almost like a musical.

It's easy to get exhausted by the high volume of car chases, but the musical element keeps things fresh and makes them stand out from the usual Hollywood fare. A strong ensemble cast that includes Jon Hamm, Jaime Foxx, and Eiza Gonzalez rounds out the eccentric and interesting characters in the film, who are mostly ne'er-do-wells. There's no telling if you'll be more smitten with the car action or the soundtrack; you'll just have to watch "Baby Driver" to find out.

Kingsman: The Secret Service

As a loose adaptation of "The Secret Service" comic by Mark Millar, "Kingsman: The Secret Service" is probably the most violent, yet somehow most cartoony, modern action movie out there. Director Matthew Vaughn essentially takes a "Kick-Ass" approach to the spy genre, mixing elaborate fight choreography and an abundance of blood and gore with the genre's established tropes, making "Kingsman" over-the-top in all the best ways.

"Kingsman" stars Taron Egerton as Eggsy, a young man who follows in his father's footsteps and becomes a member of the top-secret Kingsman organization. Trained by Galahad (Colin Firth), Eggsy eventually faces off against billionaire Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) to stop a devious and violent plot. Like many modern action films, "Kingman" has a number of big action setpieces, with the most famous one being a one-take shot of Firth killing the brainwashed congregation of a bigoted church. It's a lot to stomach if you can't handle gore, but action aficionados will certainly get something from the experience.


Audiences don't have to think too much while watching a Fast & Furious movie. Christopher Nolan's movies, on the other hand, require careful attention. And yet, there's a surprising amount of overlap between "Inception" and the Fast Saga. For one, both borrow elements from ensemble heist and spy films, and they both put breathtaking, impossible action scenes front and center.

In "Inception," Leonardo DiCaprio's character, Dom Cobb, has a chance to win his freedom and reunite with his family after being falsely accused of murdering his wife (Marion Cottilard). And so, he assembles a crew of specialists played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Elliot Page, and Tom Hardy to break into people's dreams and steal valuable intel. 

As cerebral as the writing can be, "Inception" is a set piece-driven action movie at its core, with memorable moments that include a hand-to-hand fight sequence in a rotating hallway. If nothing else, "Inception" popularized the use of heavy bass and percussion in musical scores for action movies, thanks to composer Hans Zimmer. Action movies haven't sounded the same since.

Atomic Blonde

"Hobbs & Shaw" director David Leitch broke into the film industry as a stuntman before co-directing the first "John Wick" movie, but it was his first solo effort, "Atomic Blonde," that made him one of the most in-demand directors in Hollywood. Starring Charlize Theron as MI6 agent Lorraine Broughton, "Atomic Blonde" takes audiences to Berlin shortly before the Berlin Wall fell. "Atomic Blonde" tells a complicated story full of double agents and double-crossing, but Theron's magnetic performance and her work in the fight sequences make the movie palatable despite the twists.

The fights in "Atomic Blonde" are fairly realistic, playing up the brutality and physicality of hand-to-hand combat. The action is quite smooth, too. The most memorable action sequence is shot in one take, and features bloody action that almost hurts to watch. Along with "Mad Max: Fury Road," "Atomic Blonde" helped establish Theron as an action star late in her career, foreshadowing her villainous turn in "The Fate of the Furious." Action nuts and "Fast & Furious" completionists alike have little excuse to miss out on "Atomic Blonde."