All-Time Top 7 Asian Action Films

When it comes to the action genre, Asia has a long and rich history. Hong Kong cinema is recognised for producing some of the best action films ever made, and Japan and China have also made substantial contributions to the genre.


From the 1970s until the 1990s, action movies were at their peak. The legend Bruce Lee pioneered kung fu flicks in the 1970s, which witnessed a rise in popularity. Jet Li used his real wushu talents, which appealed to both eastern and western audiences, to succeed him in the 1980s. Jackie Chan popularised the use of comedy, daring stunts, and modern metropolitan locations in action films.


1. IP Man

Ip Man is a martial arts biographical film about Ip Man, a Chinese martial artist who was also Bruce Lee’s teacher and a grandmaster of the martial art Wing Chun. During the late 1930s, Foshan is a prosperous city with several martial arts schools, and the film follows Ip’s life. The local master is Ip, who practises Wing Chun. When Japan invades China, things swiftly deteriorate; Ip and his family become impoverished, and Yip unwillingly decides to teach others the technique of Wing Chun for self-defense in order to support his family.


2. 13 Assassins


13 Assassins is a remake of Eiichi Kudo’s 1963 Japanese period drama film 13 Assassins, directed by Takashi Miike. The film is partly based on historical events and follows a group of 13 assassins who intend to kill a terrible ruler, Matsudaira Naritsugu. Takashi Miike is one of Japan’s top directors, and it’s easy to understand why: he skillfully weaves a simple tale into something much more, and the film’s violence is frightening, surprising, and effective at moments. So, if you’re searching for a violent picture with plenty of action and a compelling story, 13 Assassins is a terrific choice.


3. Shaolin Soccer


Shaolin Soccer, directed by Stephen Chow, is arguably one of the most successful Asian films. It tells the story of a monk who reunites with his monk brothers after their master’s death to build a soccer club utilising martial art. Shaolin Soccer is a truly unusual video, full of spectacular moments and great humour, so if you’re looking for a good laugh and a lot of fun, you should check it out.


4. Train To Busan

What could be better than an action film? Train To Busan is a zombie action film from South Korea that was released in 2016. The film tells the story of a sudden zombie outbreak in South Korea, as our main protagonist, Sok-woo, is trapped inside a train with his daughter, and the passengers must now fight for their families and lives against the zombies. The film is about survival; the main character is not a superhero blasting his way through zombies; rather, he is an ordinary dad prepared to go to any length to defend his daughter; this is what distinguishes the picture; it depicts human selfishness when their lives are on the line.


5. The Man from Nowhere


The Guy from Nowhere is a 2010 South Korean action thriller film that tells the story of a mystery man with a terrible past who goes on a deadly rampage after his sole buddy, a child, is taken. The Man from Nowhere is a no-holds-barred action thriller with some spectacularly choreographed knife fights and pursuit scenes. The primary characters’ friendship lends a lovely touch of compassion to the picture and helps to make the characters more genuine.


6. Battle Royale


Battle Royale is an Action Thriller directed by Kinji Fukasaku, based on the 1999 novel by Koushun Takami. The film is set in the future, where the government kidnaps a class of ninth-grade students and forces them to kill each other on a deserted island, where the last survivor wins and gets to return home. During its initial release, the picture sparked widespread debate and was even banned in certain countries. Despite the criticism, Battle Royale is a terrific picture with believable characters and excellent acting. The film expertly conveys the concerns of Japanese youth in an honest but unsettling manner.


7. Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior


Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior is a Thai martial arts film directed by Prachya Pinkaew. The story follows a young Muay Thai fighter named ‘Ting’ from a small village where a statue of Buddha is kept in the village’s temple, and it is believed that it guarantees the village’s safety. However, things go wrong when the statue is stolen, and it’s up to Ting to recover it. The story is fairly standard, but what the movie shines Overall, it’s a fantastic action movie.