Total Recall: Jason Statham's Best Movies

We count down the best-reviewed work of the Killer Elite star.

Jason Statham

Once, during a long-ago era called "the 1980s," Hollywood action heroes roamed the Earth with bulging biceps and names like Sly, Arnold, and Bruce. With a limitless supply of weapons and wisecracks, they saved the world countless times -- and they were exiled to the land of Direct to Video for their trouble, where they wandered lost throughout the 1990s and much of the aughts. But they're fighting their way back from extinction now, thanks in large part to the tenacious efforts of steely-eyed roughnecks like Jason Statham -- and to thank him for his bravery in the face of indie dramas and romantic comedies (as well as his leading role in Killer Elite), we've decided to dedicate this week's feature to a list of his finest films. Are you tough enough to Total Recall, Statham style?


51%

10. Transporter 2

After the explosive conclusion of the first Transporter, steely-eyed Frank Martin (Jason Statham) made a transatlantic move from France to Miami -- but he didn't go far enough to escape from trouble. Transporter 2 finds Frank playing chauffeur to a boy whose wealthy father (Matthew Modine) has run afoul of Colombian gangsters, triggering a series of events that includes a kidnapping, a deadly virus, a plane crash, and one death by wine rack. Calling it "cheap, shiny, indefensible junk," Salon's Stephanie Zacharek described the sequel as "a Hot Wheels hot rod encased in a glossy plastic blister pack," before following that dismissal with "But come on -- you know you want it."

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53%

9. The Mechanic

Statham holstered up with Con Air director Simon West for this remake of the 1972 Charles Bronson picture about an assassin who reluctantly accepts an assignment to kill one of the top men at his organization, then ends up taking on the dead man's son (played here by Ben Foster) as an apprentice killer. Though West's version ironed out some of the original's more interesting quirks, it retained enough sharp, ruthless action to satisfy critics like the New Yorker's Bruce Diones, who wrote, "Statham is a model of control; he's steely and graceful in his action scenes, and his interplay with the wiry Foster delivers the goods."

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54%

8. The Transporter

After stealing scenes in Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch, Statham got to make his solo action hero debut in The Transporter, a bullet-riddled thriller about Frank Martin, a guy who, well, transports things -- including illegal cargo for some pretty nasty people, no questions asked. Frank's first adventure revolves around a conspiracy to kidnap and "import" a few dozen Chinese people, and although it builds to a predictably loud and ridiculous conclusion, a number of critics still had plenty of fun getting there. As Steven Rea asked for the Philadelphia Inquirer, "It remains to be seen whether Statham can move beyond the crime-land action genre, but then again, who says he has to?"

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55%

8. Cellular

A textbook combination of an almost perfect cast with an utterly ludicrous screenplay, David R. Ellis' Cellular stars Kim Basinger as a woman who's kidnapped by a pack of thugs (led by Statham, in a rare completely villainous role) and manages to cobble together a broken cell phone to seek rescue from a stranger (Chris Evans) who just happens to be an action hero in waiting. Boasting loads of convenient coincidences, oodles of silly twists, and plenty of action, Cellular was just a little too over-the-top for some critics -- but Roger Ebert, for one, had a blast. "This is one of the year's best thrillers," he argued. "Better than Phone Booth, for my money, and I liked that, too."

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61%

6. Crank

Impossibly fast, gloriously filthy, and absolutely insane, Crank handed Statham the role of a lifetime: Chev Chelios, a hitman who runs afoul of the Chinese mafia and ends up plunging into L.A.'s seedy underbelly in search of an antidote for the poison that's slowly grinding his heart to a halt. In the meantime, all he can do to stave off its effects is seek out adrenaline anywhere he can find it -- including plenty of proudly R-rated action. "Crank qualifies as a superior piece of slick, shallow-souled trash," wrote the Toronto Star's Geoff Pevere. "And I mean that in the best sense of the term."

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Comments

Dave J

Dave J

After looking at this list, you just might say I'm a Jason Statham fan, since I love a great percentage of the action films he's involved in, despite most of them being low in the metre!

Sep 21 - 04:58 PM

Dave J

Dave J

And because it's kinda hard for me to accept Clive Owen as a villian, "The Killer Elite" which is a James Caan remake is only a rental for me!

Sep 21 - 05:00 PM

Zane B

Chum Chum

uh, are u talking to yourself?

Sep 21 - 05:30 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Well, someone happened to place a mirror right on front of my computer so I just decided to go and talk to it!

Sep 22 - 02:11 PM

Bushleaguer28

Brian Priestley

Its actually not a remake - this is based on a 1991 novel not the 1975 film

Sep 21 - 10:18 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Appreciate for the extra info and should check that book out!

Sep 22 - 12:05 PM

Dave J

Dave J

And because it's kinda hard for me to accept Clive Owen as a villian, "The Killer Elite" which is a James Caan remake is only a rental for me!

Sep 21 - 05:00 PM

Zane B

Chum Chum

uh, are u talking to yourself?

Sep 21 - 05:30 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Well, someone happened to place a mirror right on front of my computer so I just decided to go and talk to it!

Sep 22 - 02:11 PM

Bushleaguer28

Brian Priestley

Its actually not a remake - this is based on a 1991 novel not the 1975 film

Sep 21 - 10:18 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Appreciate for the extra info and should check that book out!

Sep 22 - 12:05 PM

Gordon Franklin Terry Sr

Gordon Terry

oooooooohhhhhh mmmaaaaaaannnnnnnnnnn!!!!!!!!!

JASON STATHAM . . .

dude . . . The Guy is AWESOME!!!!!!!

Sep 21 - 05:14 PM

Holden D.

Holden Drover

Agreed. The first time I seen him was The One... I still think that movie kicks a**, despite what anyone else says

Feb 2 - 07:02 PM

Zane B

Chum Chum

uh, are u talking to yourself?

Sep 21 - 05:30 PM

Dave J

Dave J

Well, someone happened to place a mirror right on front of my computer so I just decided to go and talk to it!

Sep 22 - 02:11 PM

Kurt K.

Kurt Keefner

What about his 10 second bit in "Collateral"? xD

Sep 21 - 05:35 PM

kiminesh

ganesh shan

What about Revolver?

Sep 22 - 09:07 AM

AshCosgrove

Chris Dietz

Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels is awesome. I'm surprised it doesn't have a higher score.

Sep 21 - 05:51 PM

Smartest Person Here

Greg Bonnette

I think Snatch was his best role, probably because he actually acted in it. Most of his films are just bubble gum action, which is fine with me and a few, like The Mechanic, are actually pretty good.

Sep 21 - 05:59 PM

Mr. Dr.

Mr. Dr.

you were do good untill you said the Mechanic was good- the movie had just had to many plot holes- like when he trained the young guy to be a super duper assassin in one week- really- since they never really gave you a time line and going off what they did show you it only looked like a week- when you know jasons character took years to fine tune his craft- that much they did make you get the sense of- that among other plot holes- so i hope you choke- please choke- choke,choke,choke on your fruity pebbles-

Sep 22 - 06:43 AM

Brad H.

Brad Hadfield

Fruity Pebbles get too soggy in milk.

Sep 22 - 08:58 AM

BLBnow

Brad Barfoot

This is factually correct.

Sep 23 - 10:42 PM

King Crunk

King Crunk

My favorites are Lock, Stock and Crank 2. I was disappointed in the first Crank movie, as I thought it was kind of tame compared to what people were saying about it, and it did not get as crazy as could have with the premise. Crank 2 over delivered in both aspects, and was a very memorable theater experience.

Sep 21 - 06:00 PM

Armond White Sucks

Michael Baldelli

Statham gets a lot of flak for his acting or lack thereof, but I actually think he's pretty good.

Just look at films like Snatch, Bank Job and Lock, Stock. He doesn't need to beat people up to be cool. That being said, I think he is an iconic action star. Maybe the closet thing to an 80's action star that we have right now.

Sep 21 - 06:03 PM

Bill M.

Bill McVay

You know In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale is #1.

Just kidding, I hope he fired his agent after allowing him to star in a Uwe Boll film not matter how well it paid.

Sep 21 - 06:10 PM

Myron

Myron Kinsey

Actually I heard he was gonna star in the sequel.

Sep 22 - 12:47 AM

Frisby2007

Frisby 2007

This guy is awesome! Sucks he doesn't have any movies over 80%

Sep 21 - 06:13 PM

Wisenheimer

Joshua Dinsmore

Maybe one day. :)

Sep 21 - 07:58 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

He's a good action star, but he doesn't seems to have a lot of range, or atleast he never shows it. I hear he might play daredevil in the reboot, which could be a interesting role. My favorite film of his is by far Crank.

Sep 21 - 06:21 PM

Bradley J.

Bradley J

I haven't seen any of these but I guess there isn't gonna be any animated films on these lists anymore considering Gnomeo and Juliet would end up at 8 or 7 with a 56.

Sep 21 - 06:43 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

His gnome and julliet role was just a cameo, so it doesn't count.

Sep 21 - 06:58 PM

Bradley J.

Bradley J

It was. He was in it for more than one scene but oh well.

Sep 21 - 07:10 PM

General Wiz

Carlos Flores

His gnome and julliet role was just a cameo, so it doesn't count.

Sep 21 - 06:58 PM

Bradley J.

Bradley J

It was. He was in it for more than one scene but oh well.

Sep 21 - 07:10 PM

Bradley J.

Bradley J

It was. He was in it for more than one scene but oh well.

Sep 21 - 07:10 PM

Andrew M.

Andrew McGregor

He reminds me of a rooster, always there not doing much of anything important. But just when you forget about it, you remeber, hey!, I feel like chasing the rooster around the barn, or in Jason's case shooting people in the face.

Sep 21 - 07:39 PM

seanmprd78

Sean Guyon

How in God's name did Crank 2 get a better Tomato Meter Reading than Crank?

Sep 21 - 07:40 PM

MisterVile

Mister Vile

Crank 2 was a terrible movie, i have no idea what critics saw in it. Sometimes they are just plain wrong.

Sep 28 - 05:18 AM

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