The world of martial arts has been around for more than 5,000 years and is just as popular today as it is in countries that vary in populations, wealth, and literacy rates. Fighting methods have evolved, with wars being fought on battlefields, not just physically but also psychologically. This list of fighting movies is the perfect resource for anyone looking to engage in combat, whether professionally or just for fun. It’s also fun to explore your tastes and interests and find new ones. Here are the fifty best fighting movies on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu Plus, HBO Now, or anywhere else you watch your favorite films.
1. Hard To Kill
Hard To Kill is a 1990 action film starring Steven Seagal as Mason Storm, and a former black ops commando brought back from the dead for one final mission: to take out the rest of his old squad. This action movie is not rated and has a runtime of 1 hr. 41 min. It was released in 1990 and directed by Bruce Malmuth.
Kickboxer is a 1989 action film starring Jean-Claude Van Damme as Kurt Sloane, a man who travels to Thailand to avenge the death of his brother. This martial arts movie has a runtime of 1 hr. 45 min and was directed by Mark DiSalle. It’s considered the most successful film in the Kickboxer franchise, and its sequels followed in 1990, 1991, and 2011.
3. Blood and Bone
A 2009 American direct-to-DVD martial arts movie titled Blood and Bone was written by Michael Andrews and directed by Ben Ramsey. Along with martial artist Matt Mullins, veteran professional wrestler Ernest “The Cat” Miller, MMA fighters Bob Sapp, Kimbo Slice, Maurice Smith, and Gina Carano, the movie also stars Michael Jai White, Eamonn Walker, and Julian Sands.
The 1988 American martial arts action movie Bloodsport, starring Jean-Claude Van Damme, Leah Ayres, Forest Whitaker, Donald Gibb, Roy Chiao, and Bolo Yeung, was directed by Newt Arnold. The movie’s main character is United States Army Captain Frank Dux (Van Damme), a ninjitsu expert who participates in the Kumite, an illegal full-contact martial arts competition in Hong Kong. It was one of Van Damme’s first films in which he had a leading role, and it featured his physical prowess, establishing his career as a well-known action star.
5. Mortal Kombat
American martial arts action film series Mortal Kombat is based on the Midway Games fighting video game franchise of the same name. Threshold Entertainment, founded by Lawrence Kasanoff, produced the first movie. Mortal Kombat, the original movie, debuted in 1995, and Mortal Kombat: Annihilation, the follow-up, debuted in 1997. Following the two movies, the game publisher Midway declared bankruptcy.
6. The Raid: Redemption
The Welsh director Gareth Evans wrote, directed, and edited The Raid‘s action-thriller, released in 2011 in Indonesia. Iko Uwais, who previously collaborated with Evans on the 2009 action movie Merantau, stars in the movie. In the movie, Rama (Uwais), a seasoned team member, is assigned to enter a high-rise building owned by a violent drug lord in the Jakarta slums.
The 2015 American sports drama Southpaw, written by Kurt Sutter and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Forest Whitaker, and Rachel McAdams, was directed by Antoine Fuqua. The movie centers on a boxer who decides to take control of his life after losing his wife in an accident and his young daughter to child protective services. In 2015, The Weinstein Company released the movie. Critics gave the movie mixed reviews, but they praised Gyllenhaal and Oona Laurence’s acting.
8. Rumble In The Bronx
Jackie Chan, Anita Mui, and Françoise Yip are the cast members of the 1995 Hong Kong martial arts movie Rumble in the Bronx. Chan and Tong choreographed the action, which Stanley Tong directed. Chan entered the North American mainstream thanks to the 1995 Hong Kong release of Rumble in the Bronx, which enjoyed a successful run in theaters worldwide. The movie was filmed in and around Vancouver, Canada, but it is set in the Bronx neighborhood of New York City.
9. Best Of The Best
American martial arts movie Best of the Best was released in 1989. It was directed by Bob Radler and produced by Phillip Rhee, who also co-wrote the script and co-starred in the movie. Eric Roberts, James Earl Jones, Sally Kirkland, Simon Rhee, and Chris Penn were also featured in the movie.
10. Spiritual Kung Fu
Jackie Chan and James Tien star in Lo Wei’s 1978 Hong Kong action martial arts movie Spiritual Kung Fu. Yuen Biao also appears in the movie as a Master of the Five Fists martial artist. Chan served as the movie’s stunt coordinator as well. It was also referred to as Karate Ghostbuster in some other dub releases.
11. Never Back Down
Sean Faris, Cam Gigandet, Amber Heard, and Djimon Hounsou feature in Jeff Wadlow’s 2008 American martial arts movie Never Back Down. It depicts the tale of a young man who transfers to a new high school and stumbles onto an underground combat club.
The 2009 American sports action movie Fighting, starring Channing Tatum, Terrence Howard, and Luis Guzman, was directed by Dito Montiel and written by him and Robert Munic. Rogue Pictures made it available in the US on April 24, 2009.
13. The Karate Kid
The Karate Kid is a 1984 American martial arts drama helmed by John G. Avildsen and written by Robert Mark Kamen. Ralph Macchio, Pat Morita, Elisabeth Shue, and William Zabka star in the Karate Kid franchise’s debut film. The Karate Kid centers on Daniel LaRusso (Macchio), a teenager who learns karate from Mr. Miyagi (Morita) to protect himself from bullies and compete in a competition against them. One of those bullies is Johnny Lawrence (Zabka), the ex-boyfriend of Daniel’s love interest Ali Mills (Shue).
The 2009 American science fiction martial arts film Tekken, produced by Warner Bros. and Anchor Bay Entertainment, was directed by Dwight Little. It is loosely based on the same-named fighting game series and was authored by Alan B. McElroy. The plot centers on Jin Kazama’s attempts to compete in the Iron Fist Tournament to take on the forces of the city that are also hosting the event to exact revenge for the death of his mother, Jun Kazama.
15. Matrix Reloaded
The Wachowskis are the authors and directors of the 2003 American science fiction action movie The Matrix Reloaded. It is the second movie in the Matrix series and a follow-up to The Matrix (1999). Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, and Gloria Foster return to their former roles in the movie, and Jada Pinkett Smith joins the group for the first time.
16. John Wick
The 2014 American neo-noir action thriller John Wick was written by Derek Kolstad and directed by Chad Stahelski (in his directorial debut). Along with Willem Dafoe and Dean Winters, it also stars Keanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist, Alfie Allen, Adrianne Palicki, Bridget Moynahan, and Ian McShane. It is the opening chapter of the John Wick series. The plot centers on former assassin John Wick’s quest to find the perpetrators of a home invasion, the theft of his vintage car, and the murder of his puppy, a final gift from his recently deceased wife.
17. The Raid 2
Based on the Hong Kong manhua Uncle Choi, Michael Hui, published from 1958 to the middle of the 1970s, The Raid is a 1991 Hong Kong action movie directed by Tsui Hark and Ching Siu-tung. Dean Shek, who also acted as the film’s presenter, is the movie’s title lead, with Jacky Cheung, Tony Leung, Joyce Godenzi, Fennie Yuen, Paul Chu, and Corey Yuen serving as his co-stars. Shek’s final on-screen appearance before leaving the business is in The Raid.
The epic historical drama Gladiator, which Ridley Scott directed in 2000, was written by David Franzoni, John Logan, and William Nicholson. DreamWorks Pictures and Universal Pictures jointly produced and marketed the movie. While Universal Pictures released the movie overseas through United International Pictures, DreamWorks Pictures distributed it in North America. Russell Crowe, Joaquin Phoenix, Tommy Flanagan, Djimon Hounsou, Derek Jacobi, John Shrapnel, Richard Harris, Connie Nielsen, Ralf Möller, Oliver Reed (in his final performance), and Ralf Möller all appear in it.
Unleashed, also known as Danny the Dog in French, is a 2005 action thriller co-produced by Jet Li and Luc Besson and directed by Louis Leterrier. The action choreography by Yuen Woo-Ping features Jet Li, Morgan Freeman, Bob Hoskins, and Kerry Condon as the main actors. Glasgow serves as both the backdrop and the location for filming.
20. Undisputed 3: Redemption
The 2010 American action movie Undisputed III: Redemption, starring Scott Adkins, Mykel Shannon Jenkins, Mark Ivanir, and Hristo Shopov, was directed by Isaac Florentine. It takes place some years after the events of Undisputed II: Last Man Standing and is the third episode in the Undisputed action film franchise, which was launched in 2002.
21. Rocky Balboa
The protagonist of the Rocky film series and the fictional Robert “Rocky” Balboa. Sylvester Stallone, who also invented the character, has played him in the franchise’s eight films. He is portrayed as an underprivileged or working-class Italian-American from the Philadelphia slums who began his career as a club fighter and “enforcer” for a neighborhood Mafia loan shark. He is shown to have overcome challenges in both his personal life and professional boxing career.
22. Man Of Tai Chi
Keanu Reeves makes his directorial debut in the 2013 Chinese-American martial arts movie Man of Tai Chi, which also stars Tiger Chen, Iko Uwais, Karen Mok, and Simon Yam. A teenage martial artist is compelled by the need for money to enter the world of underground fighting in this multilingual movie that has dialogue in Mandarin, English, and Hong Kong Cantonese.
In 2001, Michael Mann co-wrote, produced, and directed Ali, an American biographical sports drama. The movie centers on Muhammad Ali’s ten-year career, from 1964 to 1974, during which he won the heavyweight championship from Sonny Liston, converted to Islam, denounced the Vietnam War, was exiled from the sport, came back to fight Joe Frazier in 1971, and then won the title back from George Foreman in the Rumble in the Jungle fight of 1974.
24. Ip Man 3
The 2015 Hong Kong biographical martial arts movie Ip Man 3 is directed by Wilson Yip, produced by Raymond Wong, and written by Edmond Wong. Yuen Woo-ping is responsible for the action choreography. Donnie Yen returns to the titular role in this third installment of the Ip Man film series, which is based on the life of the Wing Chun grandmaster Ip Man.
25. Undisputed 2: Last Man Standing
Undisputed II: Last Man Standing is a 2006 American direct-to-video martial arts movie with Michael Jai White, Scott Adkins, Eli Danker, and Ben Cross as its main cast. Isaac Florentine directed it. It is the follow-up to the boxing movie Undisputed from 2002. White takes up Ving Rhames’ role as former boxer George “Iceman” Chambers in the sequel. Two sequels, Boyka: Undisputed (2017) and Undisputed III: Redemption (2010), which continue the tale of Russian prison fighter Yuri Boyka, played by Adkins, were made after it.
26. Fight Club
Brad Pitt, Edward Norton, and Helena Bonham Carter star in David Fincher’s 1999 American thriller Fight Club. It is based on Chuck Palahniuk’s 1996 book of the same name. The unidentified narrator, played by Norton, is unhappy with his white-collar employment. He creates a “fight club” with soap salesman Tyler Durden (Pitt), and he starts dating Marla Singer, a homeless woman (Bonham Carter).
27. Legend Of The Drunken Master
Jackie Chan plays a Chinese martial arts instructor in Lau Kar-1994 Leung’s Hong Kong action-comedy kung fu film Drunken Master II, which also stars Wong Fei-hung, a Cantonese folk hero. Chan had not previously acted in a traditional martial arts film until Fearless Hyena Part II (1983). In 2000, The Legend of Drunken Master, a movie version, was released in North America.
28. Romeo Must Die
In his first feature film directing effort, Andrzej Bartkowiak created the 2000 American martial arts action movie Romeo Must Die, featuring Corey Yuen’s fight choreography. Aaliyah makes her feature film debut in this movie alongside Jet Li, which is also her only film before she passed away on August 25, 2001, a year later.
29. Ip Man 2
Ip Man, a grandmaster of the martial art Wing Chun, is the subject of the 2010 Hong Kong biographical martial arts film Ip Man 2, which is largely based on his life. Ip Man 2 is a follow-up to the 2008 film Ip Man, and it was directed by Wilson Yip and starred Donnie Yen as the title character. The sequel, which picks up after the first movie’s events, is focused on Ip’s early years in British Hong Kong.
30. Kill Bill: Vol 1
Based on a story by Quentin Tarantino and Uma Thurman, Kill Bill: Volume 1 is a 2003 American martial arts film that Tarantino wrote, produced, and directed. Thurman plays the Bride, who vows vengeance on an assassination squad that includes David Carradine’s Bill and Lucy Liu, Michael Madsen, Daryl Hannah, and Vivica A. Fox when they attempt to assassinate her. She travels to Tokyo and fights the yakuza there.
31. Tom Yum Goong (The Protector)
Tony Jaa plays the lead role in the 2005 Thai martial arts action movie Tom-Yum-Goong. Ong-Bak, Jaa’s previous breakthrough movie, was also directed by Prachya Pinkaew. The fights were choreographed by Jaa and his guru, Panna Rittikrai, just like with Ong-Bak. The movie was released under the titles Warrior King in the UK, The Protector in the US, Thai Dragon in Spain, Revenge of the Warrior in Germany, and Honor of the Dragon in Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States.
32. Rocky II
A 1979 American sports drama movie titled Rocky II was written, directed, and starred by Sylvester Stallone. It is Rocky (1976)’s follow-up and the second movie in the Rocky series. Burgess Meredith, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, and Talia Shire are also included. Rocky Balboa (Stallone), who is having trouble adjusting to family life, ends up in a rematch that Apollo Creed demands in the movie (Weathers).
33. The Transporter
The Transporter is a 2002 action-thriller movie scripted by Luc Besson and directed by Corey Yuen and Louis Leterrier (who is also listed as the film’s artistic director). It was influenced by BMW Films’ The Hire series. In the movie, Jason Statham plays Frank Martin, a mercenary “transporter” who will transport anything, anyplace, without hesitation, for the appropriate money. Shu Qi plays Lai Kwai in it as well.
34. The Karate Kid in 2010
The Karate Kid is a 2010 Harald Zwart-directed martial arts drama movie that is a part of the The Karate Kid franchise. It was created by Jerry Weintraub, James Lassiter, Ken Stovitz, Will Smith, and Jada Pinkett Smith and features Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith in the key roles. Instead of taking place in the same imaginary world as the four previous Karate Kid movies, this one is a remake of the original 1984 movie, set in China, with kung fu replacing karate as the main martial art.
35. Police Story
Jackie Chan and his creation, the Hong Kong action comedy criminal franchise Police Story, feature Jackie Chan. It consists of seven movies directed by different people, including Jackie Chan, Stanley Tong, Benny Chan, and Ding Sheng. Raymond Chow, Leonard Ho, Jackie Chan, Barbie Tung, Willie Chan, Solon So, and Yang Du served as producers. In 1985, Police Story, the first movie, was released.
36. Drunken Master
Jackie Chan, Yuen Siu-Tien, and Hwang Jang-lee feature in Yuen Woo-1978 ping’s Hong Kong martial arts comedy Drunken Master It was a hit in Hong Kong, grossing 2.5 times as much as Yuen and Chan’s prior movie, Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow, which was also regarded as a hit.
37. Million Dollar Baby
Based on pieces from the 2000 anthology Rope Burns: Stories from the Corner by F.X. Toole, the pen name of fight manager and cutman Jerry Boyd, Million Dollar Baby is a 2004 American sports drama film directed, co-produced, scored, and starring Clint Eastwood. Morgan Freeman and Hilary Swank are also featured.
38. The Fighter
In David O. Russell’s 2010 American biographical sports drama The Fighter, Mark Wahlberg (who also produced), Christian Bale, Amy Adams, and Melissa Leo make appearances. The life of professional boxer Micky Ward (Wahlberg) and his older half-brother Dicky Eklund is the focus of the movie (Bale). Leo portrays Alice Eklund-Ward, the mother of Micky and Dicky, and Adams plays Micky’s lover Charlene Fleming.
39. Fist Of Fury
The 1972 Hong Kong action martial arts movie Fist of Fury was written and directed by Lo Wei, produced by Raymond Chow, and starred Bruce Lee in his second significant appearance following The Big Boss (1971). As Chen Zhen, a pupil of Huo Yuanjia who battles to protect Chinese honor against foreign aggression and bring those accountable for his master’s demise to justice, Lee—who also served as the movie’s action choreographer—plays Huo Yuanjia.
40. The Way Of The Dragon
Bruce Lee, who also plays the major character, wrote, co-produced, and directed the 1972 Hong Kong martial arts action comedy film The Way of the Dragon. The only fully finished film Lee ever directed, this was also his final movie to be released. Along with Chuck Norris making his screen debut, the movie also stars Nora Miao, Robert Wall, and Wei Ping-ou. In addition to the United States, The Way of the Dragon was first made available in Hong Kong on December 30, 1972.
41. Cinderella Man
Mae Marsh, Tom Moore, and Alec B. Francis star in the 1917 American silent comedy The Cinderella Man, directed by George Loane Tucker. Hugo Ballin, the art director, created the sets for the movie.
42. The Matrix
The Wachowskis wrote and directed The Matrix, a science fiction action film that debuted in 1999. Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, and Joe Pantoliano are among the cast members of the first movie of The Matrix series. It shows a dystopian future in which clever computers have built a simulation of reality called the Matrix to distract people while utilizing their bodies as a source of energy, trapping them inside of it without their knowledge.
43. The 36th Chamber Of Shaolin
The Master Killer, also known as The 36th Chamber of Shaolin, Shaolin Master Killer, and Shao Lin San Shi Liu Fang, is a 1978 Hong Kong kung fu movie starring Gordon Liu, produced by Shaw Brothers and directed by Lau Kar-Leung. The movie centers on San Te, a great Shaolin martial artist who studied under general Chi Shan. San Te is depicted in a highly dramatized form.
44. Ong Bak: Muay Thai Warrior
The 2003 Thai martial arts film Ong-Bak: Muay Thai Warrior, also known as Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior in the United States, was directed by Prachya Pinkaew and starred Tony Jaa. It featured stunt choreography by Panna Rittikrai. Jaa’s breakthrough performance came in the movie Ong-Bak, which led to the actor being heralded as the next big martial arts celebrity abroad.
45. Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon
The 2000 wuxia film Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, was helmed by Ang Lee and written by Wang Hui-ling, James Schamus, and Tsai Kuo-Jung. Chinese actors worldwide are represented in the movie, including Chow Yun-fat, Michelle Yeoh, Zhang Ziyi, and Chang Chen.
46. Ip Man
The 2008 Hong Kong biographical martial arts movie Ip Man is based on the life of Ip Man, a grandmaster of the Wing Chun fighting style and Bruce Lee’s instructor. The movie centers on incidents in Ip’s life that allegedly occurred in Foshan during the Sino-Japanese War. Donnie Yen played Ip Man in the movie directed by Wilson Yip and featured Sammo Hung’s choreography for martial arts.
47. Raging Bull
The 1980 American biographical sports drama film Raging Bull was directed by Martin Scorsese, produced by Robert Chartoff and Irwin Winkler, and adapted from Jake LaMotta’s 1970 autobiography Raging Bull: My Story by Paul Schrader and Mardik Martin. Robert De Niro plays Jake LaMotta, an Italian-American middleweight boxer whose relationships with his wife and family were ruined by his self-destructive and obsessive wrath, jealousy, and animalistic desire. United Artists distributed the movie.
Gavin O’Connor’s 2011 sports action movie Warrior is an American production. In it, Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton play two estranged https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warrior_(2011_film)brothers who enter a martial arts competition, forcing them to reconcile their differences and relationship. In supporting, roles are Nick Nolte, Jennifer Morrison, Frank Grillo, and Bryan Callen. There are cameos from real-life MMA fighters and combat athletes like Kurt Angle, Nate Marquardt, Anthony Johnson, Roan Carneiro, Yves Edwards, Amir Perets, and Dan Caldwell.
The 1976 American sports drama movie Rocky was written by Sylvester Stallone, starred Sylvester Stallone and was directed by John G. Avildsen. It is the opening chapter of the Rocky series. Burgess Meredith, Burt Young, Carl Weathers, and Talia Shire are also included. Rocky Balboa (Stallone), an ignorant club boxer and debt collector, gets an improbable chance to challenge Apollo Creed for the world heavyweight championship in the movie (Weathers).
50. Enter The Dragon
The 1973 martial arts movie Enter the Dragon was helmed by Robert Clouse and written by Michael Allin. Jim Kelly, John Saxon, and Bruce Lee appear in the movie. It was Lee’s last finished film role before he passed away on July 20, 1973, at 32. Co-produced by the United States and Hong Kong, it had its Los Angeles premiere on August 19, 1973, a month after Lee passed away.