When it was released in 2016, David Mackenzie’s Hell Or High Water was a big hit. Many major award nominations followed, but the film benefited from early anonymity that freed viewers of any preconceived notions or expectations. No matter how you looked at it, there was something for everyone in this film, whether you liked the traditional heist storyline or the stunning cinematography. You’re in luck if you’re looking for more of the same. We’ve compiled a list of films that have a lot in common, from the dark and gritty aesthetic to Taylor Sheridan’s excellent screenwriting.
Our picks for movies like Hell Or High Water are as follows:
1. Wind River
Wind River is a great place to start, especially if you haven’t seen it before. Taylor Sheridan took over directing duties after graduating from screenwriting (after his phenomenal success with Hell or High Water). He penned this fantastic Neo-Western murder thriller as well as directing it.
Wind River checks all the boxes if you want to sit through a real pairing to Hell Or High Water. Both Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen play police officers tasked with finding the killer on the Wyoming Indian Reservation where the murder took place. As a result of haunting visuals and a constant undercurrent of suspense, it will grab your attention right away and keep you entertained the entire time.
2. No Country For Old Men
Next, we have the critically acclaimed Western-thriller No Country for Old Men from the Coen Brothers. It was released in 2007, and it’s a modern classic that also blurs the lines between good and evil. The film delights in defying any and all expectations, whether they be that it’s a straight thriller or that it belongs solely to the Western genre.
At the heart of the story, which is based on the novel of the same name, a cold-blooded killer hunts down an army veteran after discovering a large sum of money from a drug deal gone wrong. No Country for Old Men actor Tommy Lee Jones clearly influenced Jeff Bridges’ character and performance in HoHW. Even if you haven’t seen it in a while, you can’t go wrong with re-watching it.
3. The Rover
David Michod’s surprisingly underrated Western The Rover continues our Modern-Western journey, but this time it takes place in the Australian outback rather than the Texas plains. It’s set in a dystopian future where lawlessness is the rule rather than the exception, with similar themes of hopelessness and despair following the financial crisis. To survive on the desolate plains, Robert Pattinson and Guy Pearce form a group with the help of an unexpected third party. In comparison to Hell Or High Water, The Rover is a lot darker and grimmer. If that’s your cup of tea, however, you’ll enjoy it a great deal.
Sicario, directed by Denis Villeneuve, is up next. It’s a fast-paced action thriller with plenty of tension. Taylor Sheridan’s masterful screenwriting earns this film a spot on the list despite its tight plot and stunning visuals. It’s a departure from the Westerns we’ve seen so far, as it features a lot more big-budget action. However, if you’re a fan of Benicio del Toro and Emily Blunt and want something with a bit of a faster tempo, it’s definitely worth watching again.
5. The Place Beyond The Pines
Our wildcard pick is Derek Cianfrance’s 2012 crime drama, The Place Beyond the Pines, directed by David Gordon Green. If Chris Pine and Ben Foster’s daring bank robberies appealed to you, you’ll love Ryan Gosling’s gut-wrenching heist movies. While the cops v robbers action is fun, the story goes much deeper and revolves around themes of family and fate after the initial excitement wears off. Much like Hell Or High Water, it’s brilliant cinematography makes it well worth watching.
6. Hold The Dark
Hold the Dark, Jeremy Saulnier’s suspenseful 2018 action thriller, is our penultimate selection. Featuring well-known actors like Jeffrey Wright, Alexander Skarsgard, and James Badge Dale, the plot revolves around a small Alaskan village where children start going missing. With a desolate and unsettling aesthetic reminiscent of Hell Or High Water, this film will hold your attention as it builds to an exciting conclusion.
7. Shimmer Lake
Last but not least, we have Oren Uziel’s self-penned and directed crime-thriller Shimmer Lake, one of our favorite films of 2017. The film, which slipped under the public’s radar, is a ton of fun and has many similarities to Hell Or High Water. However, this time, the brothers are at odds because one suspects the other of being involved in the bank robbery. Ben Walker, Wyatt Russell, and Rainn Wilson all turn in strong performances, so if none of the other options appealed to you, this one just might.