Mercenaries, Spies and Private Eyesby SeussMeTub | created - 21 Feb 2013 | updated - 19 May 2016 | Public
My favorite movies about soldiers for hire, secret agents, detectives and adventurers. These movies are mostly realistic though there will be some titles that have fantastical elements in it.
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1. The Wild Geese (1978)
R | 134 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
A British banker hires a group of British mercenaries to rescue a deposed African President from the hands of a corrupt African dictator.
3. Zero Dark Thirty (2012)
R | 157 min | Drama, Thriller
A chronicle of the decade-long hunt for al-Qaeda terrorist leader Osama bin Laden after the September 2001 attacks, and his death at the hands of the Navy S.E.A.L.s Team 6 in May 2011.
Votes: 236,149 | Gross: $95.72M
5. Ronin (1998)
R | 122 min | Action, Adventure, Crime
A freelancing former U.S. Intelligence Agent tries to track down a mysterious package that is wanted by the Irish and the Russians.
Votes: 155,073 | Gross: $41.62M
6. The Ipcress File (1965)
Not Rated | 109 min | Thriller
In London, a counter espionage agent deals with his own bureaucracy while investigating the kidnapping and brainwashing of British scientists.
7. Dr. No (1962)
PG | 110 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
A resourceful British government agent seeks answers in a case involving the disappearance of a colleague and the disruption of the American space program.
Votes: 126,629 | Gross: $16.07M
8. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)
R | 122 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
In the bleak days of the Cold War, espionage veteran George Smiley is forced from semi-retirement to uncover a Soviet Agent within MI6.
Votes: 164,603 | Gross: $24.15M
9. Three Days of the Condor (1975)
R | 117 min | Mystery, Thriller
A bookish CIA researcher finds all his co-workers dead, and must outwit those responsible until he figures out who he can really trust.
Votes: 39,331 | Gross: $41.51M
10. The Dogs of War (1980)
R | 102 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
Mercenary James Shannon, on a reconnaissance job to the African nation of Zangaro, is tortured and deported. He returns to lead a coup.
12. Hammett (1982)
PG | 97 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery
Fictional account of real-life mystery writer Dashiell Hammett, and his involvement in the investigation of a beautiful Chinese cabaret actress' mysterious disappearance in San Francisco.
Votes: 2,500 | Gross: $0.04M
13. From Russia with Love (1963)
PG | 115 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
James Bond willingly falls into an assassination ploy involving a naive Russian beauty in order to retrieve a Soviet encryption device that was stolen by SPECTRE.
Votes: 98,732 | Gross: $24.80M
16. The Spy Who Came in from the Cold (1965)
Not Rated | 112 min | Drama, Thriller
British agent Alec Leamas refuses to come in from the Cold War during the 1960s, choosing to face another mission, which may prove to be his final one.
18. The Debt (I) (2010)
R | 113 min | Drama, Thriller
In 1965, three Mossad agents cross into East Berlin to apprehend a notorious Nazi war criminal. Thirty years later, the secrets the agents share come back to haunt them.
Votes: 58,824 | Gross: $31.18M
19. A Most Wanted Man (2014)
R | 122 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
A Chechen Muslim illegally immigrates to Hamburg, where he gets caught in the international war on terror.
Votes: 63,952 | Gross: $17.24M
20. The Bourne Identity (2002)
PG-13 | 119 min | Action, Mystery, Thriller
A man is picked up by a fishing boat, bullet-riddled and suffering from amnesia, before racing to elude assassins and regain his memory.
Votes: 450,379 | Gross: $121.66M
21. The Bourne Supremacy (2004)
PG-13 | 108 min | Action, Mystery, Thriller
When Jason Bourne is framed for a CIA operation gone awry, he is forced to resume his former life as a trained assassin to survive.
Votes: 386,390 | Gross: $176.24M
22. The Bourne Ultimatum (2007)
PG-13 | 115 min | Action, Mystery, Thriller
Jason Bourne dodges a ruthless CIA official and his agents from a new assassination program while searching for the origins of his life as a trained killer.
Votes: 549,219 | Gross: $227.47M
23. The Bourne Legacy (2012)
PG-13 | 135 min | Action, Adventure, Mystery
An expansion of the universe from Robert Ludlum's novels, centered on a new hero whose stakes have been triggered by the events of the previous three films.
Votes: 254,649 | Gross: $113.20M
24. You Only Live Twice (1967)
PG | 117 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
Agent 007 and the Japanese secret service ninja force must find and stop the true culprit of a series of spacejackings before nuclear war is provoked.
Votes: 82,631 | Gross: $43.08M
25. The Hunt for Red October (1990)
PG | 135 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
In November 1984, the Soviet Union's best submarine captain in their newest sub violates orders and heads for the USA. Is he trying to defect or to start a war?
Votes: 155,184 | Gross: $122.01M
26. The Conversation (1974)
PG | 113 min | Drama, Mystery, Thriller
A paranoid, secretive surveillance expert has a crisis of conscience when he suspects that a couple, on whom he is spying, will be murdered.
Votes: 82,031 | Gross: $4.42M
27. Skyfall (2012)
PG-13 | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
Bond's loyalty to M is tested when her past comes back to haunt her. When MI6 comes under attack, 007 must track down and destroy the threat, no matter how personal the cost.
Votes: 565,025 | Gross: $304.36M
28. Clear and Present Danger (1994)
PG-13 | 141 min | Action, Crime, Drama
CIA Analyst Jack Ryan is drawn into an illegal war fought by the US government against a Colombian drug cartel.
Votes: 75,929 | Gross: $122.19M
30. Smiley's People (1982)
360 min | Drama, Mystery
Called out of retirement to settle the affairs of a friend, Smiley finds his old organization, the Circus, so overwhelmed by political considerations that it doesn't want to know what ... See full summary »
32. True Lies (1994)
R | 141 min | Action, Comedy, Thriller
A fearless, globe-trotting, terrorist-battling secret agent has his life turned upside down when he discovers his wife might be having an affair with a used car salesman while terrorists smuggle nuclear war heads into the United States.
Votes: 207,457 | Gross: $146.28M
33. Rogue Male (1976 TV Movie)
103 min | Drama, Thriller
Early in 1939 Sir Robert Hunter takes aim at Adolf Hitler with a high powered rifle, but the shot misses its mark. Captured and tortured by the Gestapo and left for dead, Sir Robert makes ... See full summary »
34. The Constant Gardener (2005)
R | 129 min | Drama, Mystery, Romance
A widower is determined to get to the bottom of a potentially explosive secret involving his wife's murder, big business, and corporate corruption.
Votes: 119,711 | Gross: $33.58M
35. Doomsday Gun (1994 TV Movie)
Unrated | 120 min | Action, Drama, History
When a brilliant munitions engineer contracts to build a super-gun for Saddam Hussein in 1988, he attracts the attention of several intelligence agencies.
36. Body of Lies (2008)
R | 128 min | Action, Drama, Romance
A CIA agent on the ground in Jordan hunts down a powerful terrorist leader while being caught between the unclear intentions of his American supervisors and Jordan Intelligence.
Votes: 188,861 | Gross: $39.39M
37. Mission: Impossible (1996)
PG-13 | 110 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
An American agent, under false suspicion of disloyalty, must discover and expose the real spy without the help of his organization.
Votes: 329,898 | Gross: $180.98M
38. Thunderball (1965)
PG | 130 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
James Bond heads to The Bahamas to recover two nuclear warheads stolen by SPECTRE agent Emilio Largo in an international extortion scheme.
Votes: 89,607 | Gross: $63.60M
40. Eye of the Needle (1981)
R | 112 min | Romance, Thriller, War
A ruthless German spy, trying to get out of Britain with vital information about D-Day, must spend time with a young woman and her crippled husband.
Votes: 7,904 | Gross: $17.58M
41. Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol (2011)
PG-13 | 132 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
The IMF is shut down when it's implicated in the bombing of the Kremlin, causing Ethan Hunt and his new team to go rogue to clear their organization's name.
Votes: 395,163 | Gross: $209.40M
42. Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)
PG-13 | 89 min | Adventure, Comedy
A 1960s hipster secret agent is brought out of cryofreeze to oppose his greatest enemy in the 1990s, where his social attitudes are glaringly out of place.
Votes: 196,442 | Gross: $53.88M
43. Taken (I) (2008)
PG-13 | 93 min | Action, Crime, Thriller
A retired CIA agent travels across Europe and relies on his old skills to save his estranged daughter, who has been kidnapped while on a trip to Paris.
Votes: 517,029 | Gross: $145.00M
44. Fair Game (I) (2010)
PG-13 | 108 min | Biography, Drama, Thriller
CIA operative Valerie Plame discovers her identity is allegedly leaked by the government as payback for an op-ed article her husband wrote criticizing the Bush administration.
Votes: 41,531 | Gross: $9.53M
46. The Lives of Others (2006)
R | 137 min | Drama, Thriller
In 1984 East Berlin, an agent of the secret police, conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover, finds himself becoming increasingly absorbed by their lives.
Votes: 294,302 | Gross: $11.29M
47. The Imitation Game (2014)
PG-13 | 114 min | Biography, Drama, History
During World War II, the English mathematical genius Alan Turing tries to crack the German Enigma code with help from fellow mathematicians.
Votes: 566,478 | Gross: $91.13M
48. The Informant! (2009)
R | 108 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
The U.S. government decides to go after an agro-business giant with a price-fixing accusation, based on the evidence submitted by their star witness, vice president-turned-informant Mark Whitacre.
Votes: 56,415 | Gross: $33.31M
49. Munich (2005)
R | 164 min | Drama, History, Thriller
Based on the true story of the Black September aftermath, about the five men chosen to eliminate the ones responsible for that fateful day.
Votes: 189,749 | Gross: $47.40M
50. The Gunman (2015)
R | 115 min | Action, Crime, Drama
A sniper on a mercenary assassination team, kills the minister of mines of the Congo. Terrier's successful kill shot forces him into hiding. Returning to the Congo years later, he becomes the target of a hit squad himself.
Votes: 33,197 | Gross: $10.64M
51. The Eiger Sanction (1975)
R | 129 min | Action, Crime, Thriller
A classical art professor and collector, who doubles as a professional assassin, is coerced out of retirement to avenge the murder of an old friend.
52. The Fourth Protocol (1987)
R | 119 min | Thriller
John Preston is a British Agent with the task of preventing the Russians detonating a nuclear explosion next to an American base in the UK. The Russians are hoping this will shatter the "special relationship" between the two countries.
Votes: 7,687 | Gross: $12.42M
53. The Sum of All Fears (2002)
PG-13 | 124 min | Action, Drama, Thriller
CIA analyst Jack Ryan must stop the plans of a Neo Nazis faction that threatens to induce a catastrophic conflict between the United States and Russia's newly elected president by detonating a nuclear weapon at a football game in Baltimore.
Votes: 92,351 | Gross: $118.91M
54. The Peacemaker (1997)
R | 124 min | Action, Thriller
A US Army colonel and a civilian woman supervising him must track down stolen Russian nuclear weapons before they're used by terrorists.
Votes: 49,114 | Gross: $41.26M
55. On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)
PG | 142 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
James Bond woos a mob boss's daughter and goes undercover to uncover the true reason for Blofeld's allergy research in the Swiss Alps that involves beautiful women from around the world.
Votes: 66,669 | Gross: $22.80M
56. The Russia House (1990)
R | 123 min | Drama, Romance, Thriller
An expatriate British publisher unexpectedly finds himself working for British intelligence to investigate people in Russia.
Votes: 12,522 | Gross: $23.00M
57. Firefox (1982)
PG | 136 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
A pilot is sent into the Soviet Union on a mission to steal a prototype jet fighter that can be partially controlled by a neuralink
Votes: 21,727 | Gross: $46.71M
60. Kiss Me Deadly (1955)
Not Rated | 106 min | Crime, Film-Noir, Mystery
A doomed female hitchhiker pulls Mike Hammer into a deadly whirlpool of intrigue, revolving around a mysterious "great whatsit".
61. Where Eagles Dare (1968)
PG | 158 min | Action, Adventure, War
Allied agents stage a daring raid on a castle where the Nazis are holding an American General prisoner... but that's not all that's really going on.
64. Black Book (2006)
R | 145 min | Drama, Thriller, War
In the Nazi-occupied Netherlands during World War II, a Jewish singer infiltrates the regional Gestapo headquarters for the Dutch resistance.
Votes: 65,107 | Gross: $4.40M
65. The Company (2007– )
286 min | Drama, History, Romance
Real-life figures from the Cold War-era mix with a fictional story based on a group of C.I.A. operatives and their counterparts in the K.G.B., MI6, and the Mossad.
66. Spy Game (2001)
R | 126 min | Action, Crime, Thriller
Retiring CIA agent Nathan Muir recalls his training of Tom Bishop while working against agency politics to free him from his Chinese captors.
Votes: 129,216 | Gross: $0.03M
68. L'affaire Farewell (2009)
Not Rated | 113 min | Drama, Romance, Thriller
The French intelligence service alerts the U.S. about a Soviet spy operation during the height of the Cold War, which sets off an unfortunate chain of events.
70. Burn! (1969)
GP | 112 min | Action, Drama
The professional mercenary Sir William Walker instigates a slave revolt on the Caribbean island of Queimada in order to help improve the British sugar trade. Years later he is sent again to... See full summary »
71. Inherent Vice (2014)
R | 148 min | Comedy, Crime, Drama
In 1970, drug-fueled Los Angeles private investigator Larry "Doc" Sportello investigates the disappearance of a former girlfriend.
Votes: 75,021 | Gross: $8.11M
72. Angel Heart (1987)
R | 113 min | Horror, Mystery, Thriller
A private investigator is hired by a man who calls himself Louis Cyphre to track down a singer named Johnny Favorite. But the investigation takes an unexpected and somber turn.
Votes: 68,828 | Gross: $17.19M
73. The War Is Over (1966)
121 min | Drama, War
Diego is one of the chief of the spanish Communist Party. He is travelling back to Paris (where he lives) from a mission in Madrid. He is arrested at the border for an identity check but ... See full summary »
74. Spectre (I) (2015)
PG-13 | 148 min | Action, Adventure, Thriller
A cryptic message from Bond's past, sends him on a trail to uncover a sinister organization. While M battles political forces to keep the Secret Service alive, Bond peels back the layers of deceit to reveal the terrible truth behind S.P.E.C.T.R.E.
Votes: 328,233 | Gross: $200.07M
78. A Dandy in Aspic (1968)
Approved | 107 min | Action, Drama, Thriller
During the Cold War, the British and Soviet intelligence services attempt to out-fox one another using the homesick double-agent Krasnevin as pawn in the complex spy-game.
79. Sky Riders (1976)
PG | 91 min | Action, Adventure
When an industrialist's wife and kids are kidnapped by terrorists in Greece, the woman's ex-husband comes to the rescue with a plan involving hang gliders.
80. The Final Option (1982)
R | 125 min | Action, Thriller
A trooper with the British Special Air Service (SAS) infiltrates a radical political group who are planning a terrorist operation against American dignitaries. A glamourized look at the ... See full summary »
Votes: 2,370 | Gross: $2.67M
82. Jack Strong (2014)
Not Rated | 128 min | Action, Biography, Crime
The most spectacular Polish spy of the Cold War era, Colonel Ryszard Kuklinski, informs Americans about the Communist Bloc's top secrets in the face of the upcoming martial law.
83. Argo (2012)
R | 120 min | Biography, Drama, Thriller
Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1979.
Votes: 503,463 | Gross: $136.03M
84. The Innocent (1993)
R | 119 min | Drama
A young engineer is sent to post World War II Berlin to help the Americans, in spying on the Russians. In a time and place where discretion is still a man's best friend, he falls in love ... See full summary »
Votes: 1,333 | Gross: $0.55M
85. The Secret Agent (1996)
R | 95 min | Drama, Thriller
London of the late 19th century is a haven for political exiles of all sorts - refugees, partisans, anarchists. Verloc has made his living spying for the Russian government, an agent ... See full summary »
Votes: 2,012 | Gross: $0.11M
86. Hostage (1992)
R | 98 min | Action, Drama, Thriller
UK black ops agent is sent to Argentina to find a kidnapped special ops analyst and take out the terrorists who took him. When a pretty girl who may somehow be involved catches his eye things get very complicated fast.
87. Triple agent (2004)
115 min | Drama, Thriller
France, 1936-37. The Popular Front wins elections, the Spanish Civil War begins, and Hitler and Stalin are manipulating and spying. The brilliant exile, Fiodor Voronin, a general at 20, is ... See full summary »
89. Army of Crime (2009)
Not Rated | 139 min | Drama, History, War
The poet Missak Manouchian leads a mixed bag of youngsters and immigrants in a clandestine battle against the Nazi occupation. Twenty-two men and one woman fighting for an ideal and for ... See full summary »
Votes: 2,746 | Gross: $0.04M
90. The Liquidator (1965)
Not Rated | 105 min | Action, Thriller, Crime
Colonel Mostyn of the British Intelligence Service suspects there is a leak in his department and hires an American expatriate to eliminate various targets working for the Soviets.
92. Bad Company (1995)
R | 108 min | Crime, Drama, Thriller
Nelson Crowe is a CIA operative under the thumb of the Company for a disputed delivery of $50,000 in gold. They blackmail him into working for the Grimes Organization, which is set up as a ... See full summary »
Votes: 2,442 | Gross: $3.70M
93. Jason Bourne (2016)
PG-13 | 123 min | Action, Thriller
The CIA's most dangerous former operative is drawn out of hiding to uncover more explosive truths about his past.
Votes: 171,371 | Gross: $162.43M
95. The Human Factor (1979)
R | 115 min | Drama, Romance, Thriller
When a leak of information in the African Section of British Intelligence is discovered security man Daintry is brought in to investigate.
96. North by Northwest (1959)
Not Rated | 136 min | Action, Adventure, Mystery
A hapless New York advertising executive is mistaken for a government agent by a group of foreign spies, and is pursued across the country while he looks for a way to survive.
Votes: 246,862 | Gross: $13.28M
97. Bridge of Spies (2015)
PG-13 | 142 min | Drama, History, Thriller
During the Cold War, an American lawyer is recruited to defend an arrested Soviet spy in court, and then help the CIA facilitate an exchange of the spy for the Soviet captured American U2 spy plane pilot, Francis Gary Powers.
Votes: 238,962 | Gross: $72.31M
98. A Perfect Spy (1987)
374 min | Thriller
This is the story of Magnus Pym, from his childhood to the end of his career in middle age. As a young man, there is little doubt that his father Rick was the most influential character in ... See full summary »
100. The Hunter (IV) (2011)
R | 100 min | Adventure, Drama, Thriller
Martin, a mercenary, is sent from Europe by a mysterious biotech company to the Tasmanian wilderness on a hunt for the last Tasmanian tiger.
Votes: 33,283 | Gross: $0.18M