Entertainment

The Best Action Movies of 2011  

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Originally by Ranker Community
1.2k votes 208 voters 21.5k views 39 items

List Rules Movies must have been released in 2011

The best action movies of 2011 managed to combine thrills, feats of strength, a few pretty amazing car chases and explosions, a few impressive gun fights and, most importantly, heroes who managed to fight against overwhelming odds (including some really bad, bad guys) for the greater good. I've tried to list all of the best action films of 2011, but I am sure I've left off more than a few. If your favorite is missing, add it! And if your personal fave did make the cut, vote it up. See an action movie on this list that you thought was terrible? Vote it down!

2011 brought us some pretty good superhero action movies, like 'Thor' and 'Captain America: The First Avenger' (I thought both of these were fantastic, but I still can't wait for the 'Avengers' movie in 2012!). Moviegoers also got their fill of sci-fi action movies like 'Super 8,' 'Cowboys & Aliens' and 'Attack the Block.' The absolute best action drama movie of the year, in my humble opinion, was 'Drive' starring Ryan Gosling, but there were many others (hint: Add them if they aren't already on this list). Other standouts, to me, were '30 Minutes or Less' (great action comedy), 'Immortals,' 'Warrior' and 'Real Steel' (really, how can you screw up with fighting robots, right?). And of course, no list of great 2011 action movies would be complete without the final Harry Potter movie: 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II.'

For movie fans, 2011 offered a little bit of everything. Can't remember some of the great movies you saw? Check out this list of the best movies of 2011, along with lists of the best comedies and horror movies of the year. Sometimes, it's easier to recall the worst movies of the year, so check that list as well (and make sure to add your personal worst if it's not already on the list). So what was the best action movie of 2011?  That's up to you to decide.
list ordered by
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Jennifer Lawrence, Hugh Jackman, Michael Fassbender
X-Men: First Class is a 2011 American superhero film, based on the X-Men characters appearing in Marvel Comics. It is the fifth installment in the X-Men film series. It serves as a prequel to ...more

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Tom Cruise, Paula Patton, Jeremy Renner
Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol is a 2011 American action spy film directed by Brad Bird, and the fourth film in the Mission: Impossible series. The IMF is shut down when it's implicated in ...more

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#423 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #541 of 547 The Greatest Movies for Guys #277 of 319 Movies with the Best Soundtracks

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Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Jordana Brewster
Fast Five is a 2011 American action film directed by Justin Lin, and the fifth installment in The Fast and the Furious franchise. Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel) and his crew of street racers plan ...more

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#181 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #191 of 217 The Worst Sequels Of All Time #238 of 410 The Best Rainy Day Movies

4
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Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe, Gary Oldman
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 is a 2011 fantasy film directed by David Yates, based on the novel by J. K. Rowling and the final film in the series. Harry (Daniel Radcliffe), Ron ...more

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#164 of 291 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry #258 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time #110 of 582 The Greatest Film Scores of All Time

5
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Hugh Jackman, Evangeline Lilly, Kevin Durand
Real Steel is a 2011 film directed by Shawn Levy.

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#1,251 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #95 of 116 Movies That Need Sequels #41 of 164 Live Action Films with the Best CGI Effects

6
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Christina Hendricks, Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan
Drive is a 2011 American neo noir arthouse action directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, starring Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, Bryan Cranston, Oscar Isaac and Albert Brooks. It is adapted from the ...more

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#269 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #288 of 302 The Greatest Soundtracks of All Time #241 of 347 The Best Movies Based On Books

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James Franco, Freida Pinto, John Lithgow
Rise of the Apes is in pre-production as of May 2010. This origin story for a new franchise takes place in modern day San Francisco and will star James Franco. It is currently scheduled for a ...more

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#131 of 155 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #28 of 135 The Scariest Animal Movies Ever Made #51 of 160 The Best Dystopian And Near Future Movies

8
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Rosie Huntington-Whiteley, Shia LaBeouf, John Malkovich
Transformers: Dark of the Moon is a 2011 American science fiction action film directed by Michael Bay, based on the toy line, and the third film in the series. The Autobots learn of a ...more

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#413 of 630 The Greatest Guilty Pleasure Movies #120 of 183 The Best Superhero Movies Ever Made #140 of 217 The Worst Sequels Of All Time

9
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Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston
Thor is a 2011 American superhero film directed by Kenneth Branagh, based on the Marvel Comics character. The powerful, but arrogant god Thor (Chris Hemsworth), is cast out of Asgard to live ...more

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10
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Samuel L. Jackson, Chris Evans, Tommy Lee Jones
Captain America: The First Avenger is a 2011 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics character Captain America, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Paramount Pictures. It is ...more

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#136 of 383 The Best War Movies Ever #21 of 183 The Best Superhero Movies Ever Made #206 of 460 The Most Quotable Movies of All Time

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Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga
Source Code is a 2011 science fiction film directed by Duncan Jones, written by Ben Ripley, and starring Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga, and Jeffrey Wright. The film had its ...more

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#183 of 258 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #85 of 155 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #850 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies

12
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Jennifer Morrison, Tom Hardy, Nick Nolte
Warrior is a 2011 American sports drama film directed by Gavin O'Connor and starring Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton as two estranged brothers whose entrance into a mixed martial arts tournament ...more

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#47 of 291 The Top Tearjerker Movies That Make Men Cry #1,443 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #309 of 547 The Greatest Movies for Guys

13
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Rachel McAdams, Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows is a 2011 British-American action mystery film directed by Guy Ritchie and produced by Joel Silver, Lionel Wigram, Susan Downey and Dan Lin. It is a sequel to ...more
14
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Jason Statham, Donald Sutherland, Mini Andén
The Mechanic is a 2011 American action thriller film starring Jason Statham and Ben Foster. Directed by Simon West, it is a remake of the 1972 film of the same name, directed by Michael Winner, ...more
15
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Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Keith Richards
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides a 2011 action adventure film based on Tim Powers' novel. The film is directed by Rob Marshall

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Elle Fanning, AJ Michalka, Kyle Chandler
Super 8 is a 2011 American science fiction horror film written, co-produced, and directed by J. J. Abrams and produced by Steven Spielberg. The film stars Joel Courtney, Elle Fanning, and Kyle ...more

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#49 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #496 of 582 The Greatest Film Scores of All Time #25 of 116 The Scariest Giant Monster Movies

17
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Dianna Agron, Teresa Palmer, Alex Pettyfer
I Am Number Four is a 2011 American teen action science fiction film, directed by D. J. Caruso, starring Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, Teresa Palmer, Dianna Agron and Callan McAuliffe. The ...more

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#139 of 183 The Best Superhero Movies Ever Made #56 of 86 The 35+ Greatest Dystopian Action Movies #136 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made

18
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Blake Lively, Ryan Reynolds, Angela Bassett
Green Lantern is a 2011 action fantasy film written by Greg Berlanti, Michael Green and Marc Guggenheim and directed by Martin Campbell.

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Mickey Rourke, Freida Pinto, John Hurt
Immortals is a 2011 3D mythology fantasy film directed by Tarsem Singh and starring Henry Cavill, Freida Pinto, and Mickey Rourke. The film also stars Luke Evans, Steve Byers, Kellan Lutz, ...more

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Olivia Wilde, Harrison Ford, Daniel Craig
Cowboys & Aliens is a 2011 American science fiction Western film directed by Jon Favreau and starring Daniel Craig, Harrison Ford, and Olivia Wilde. The film is based on the 2006 graphic ...more

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#128 of 155 The Best Science Fiction Action Movies #61 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made #41 of 60 The 30+ Best Modern Western Movies

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Cate Blanchett, Eric Bana, Saoirse Ronan
Hanna is a 2011 action thriller film that contains prominent fairy tale elements, directed by Joe Wright. The film stars Saoirse Ronan as the title character, a girl raised in the wilderness of ...more

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Nick Frost, John Boyega, Luke Treadaway
Attack the Block is a 2011 British science fiction comedy film. The film was written and directed by Joe Cornish and stars Jodie Whittaker, John Boyega, Nick Frost and Luke Treadaway. Attack the ...more

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#611 of 997 The All-Time Greatest Comedy Films #296 of 569 The Greatest Disaster Movies of All Time #115 of 193 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made

23
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Daniel Craig, Simon Pegg, Jamie Bell
The Adventures of Tintin, also known as The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn, is a 2011 3D motion capture computer-animated epic adventure film based on The Adventures of Tintin, ...more

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#452 of 600 The Best Animated Films Ever #23 of 33 The Best Steven Spielberg Movies #124 of 207 The Best Adventure Movies

24
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Liv Tyler, Ellen Page, Kevin Bacon
Super is a 2010 American superhero dark comedy-drama film written and directed by James Gunn, starring Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page, Liv Tyler, Kevin Bacon and Nathan Fillion. The film premiered at ...more

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#112 of 183 The Best Superhero Movies Ever Made #942 of 1,204 The Absolute Funniest Movies Of All Time #49 of 60 The Funniest Superhero Movies Ever Made

25
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Jesse Eisenberg, Aziz Ansari, Nick Swardson
30 Minutes or Less is a 2011 American action comedy film directed by Ruben Fleischer starring Jesse Eisenberg, Danny McBride, Aziz Ansari and Nick Swardson. It is produced by Columbia Pictures ...more