10 Movies Like Hit Man That Will Entertain You

Filmmaker Richard Linklater’s acclaimed film ‘Hit Man’ brings author Skip Hollandsworth’s eponymous Texas Monthly article to the screen. The romantic black comedy features Glen Powell stepping in the shoes of Gary Johnson, a real-life psychology and philosophy professor in New Orleans, who also assists the police by going around as a fake hitman. Adopting various personas to fool his clients — people willing to put a price on someone’s life — Gary gathers incriminating evidence, entrapping them.

Gary’s routine experiences an unusual shift when he becomes involved with Madison, a woman seeking to escape her controlling husband. As their relationship deepens, Gary’s dual life becomes increasingly complicated, causing a dramatic tonal shift that breaks barriers of conventional biographies, crimes, and romances. For viewers who enjoy such combinations of dark humor, romance, and crime drama, here are ten movies similar to ‘Hit Man’ that are worth a watch.

10. Rush (1991)

‘Rush’ follows two undercover narcotics officers, Jim Raynor and Kristen Cates, who are tasked with infiltrating a drug ring in Texas. As they make deeper advances into the drug underworld, they become increasingly entangled in their roles, facing moral dilemmas and personal struggles. With Jason Patric and Jennifer Jason Leigh appearing in the cops’ roles, the mission spirals out of control as they develop addictions and find their loyalties tested. Director Lili Fini Zanuck’s crime drama doesn’t fail to point out the psychological complexities of such work and its toll on those who immerse themselves in dangerous roles.

As it is spoken out loud by Gary — also a psychological professor — throughout the runtime of ‘Hit Man,’ ‘Rush,’ too manages to present the contrasting emotions an impersonating person goes through. Aside from the psychology of impersonating, the two crime films also coincide in various plot details, such as the junction where its integrated lead must decide between right and wrong and whether to cross the invisible fine line. Moreover, the intense relationship between Jim and Kristen parallels the connection between Gary and Madison, with both pairs struggling to maintain their true selves and build enough trust amidst their fabricated personas.

9. BlacKkKlansman (2018)

Spike Lee’s crime comedy narrates the true story of Ron Stallworth, an African American detective, whose memoir, ‘Black Klansman,’ also laid the foundation of Lee’s Academy Award-winning screenplay. Starring John David Washington as Stallworth, the biographical drama recounts the events of him infiltrating the local Ku Klux Klan chapter with the help of a Jewish surrogate, Detective Philip Zimmerman (Adam Driver). The film tackles serious themes of racism and identity during 1970s Colorado.

Similar to ‘Hit Man,’ ‘BlacKkKlansman’ is rooted in the day-to-day adventures of cops working undercover and navigating the dangerous terrain of deception that puts dangerous threats on their heads. Both films use humor to address serious societal issues, creating a unique blend of entertainment and thought-provoking commentary. Even though it lacks a central romance — or personal growth — the dynamic interplay of crime, historical retelling, and black humor captures all the needed elements of ‘Hit Man.’

8. Miami Vice (2006)

A master of the crime genre, Michael Mann adapted Anthony Yerkovich’s cult classic television drama, ‘Miami Vice,’ once again sending detectives James Crockett and Ricardo Tubbs undercover. Starring Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx as the cops as they infiltrate a drug trafficking organization, the cop movie dives into their complex lives, blurring the lines between their professional and personal identities while facing intense danger and moral dilemmas.

Like ‘Hit Man,’ ‘Miami Vice’ empathizes with the duality of undercover duty and the personal toll it takes on hardworking police officers. Both films feature protagonists deeply caught up in their roles, leading to a constant battle with trust and deception in their personal relationships. Increasing these similarities further are the movies’ grounded settings and somewhat twisted chemistry between the cops, who are on the same side but do not like each other.

7. Date Night (2010)

From Shawn Levy, who has a very successful roster of directing black comedies, this rom-com follows a married couple seeking to rekindle their sex life with a dauntless night out. Starring comedy giant Steve Carell and Tina Fey, as Phil and Claire Foster, who assume the identities of another couple for naughtiness, only to be mistaken for criminals involved in a heist. Their evening spirals into a series of comedic and thrilling misadventures with sufficient wisecracks as they make attempts to go home. Much like ‘Hit Man,’ ‘Date Night’ deals with a couple who has been thrust into a hilariously complicated situation, with both criminals and cops seeking their other fake selves. The comedies share the classic trope of mistaken identity in plots so thickened that the central romance can’t help but reignite itself.

6. Mystery Date (1991)

Before their string of collaborations took off with ‘Before Sunrise,’ a young Ethan Hawke starred in ‘Mystery Date,’ a comedy that reminds of Richard Linklater’s many works, including ‘Hit Man.’ Directed by Jonathan Wacks, the plot tells the story of Tom McHugh, a shy young man, who takes his dream girl, Geena, on a date that quickly spirals out of control. Tom borrows his brother’s car and identity to impress Geena, but the evening turns chaotic when they become the targets of various villains due to Tom’s mistaken identity. Among the enemies the teenage couple takes on is also a hitman, shedding light on how risky it gets for a pretender when thrust into a high-octane situation. Similar to ‘Hit Man,’ ‘Mystery Date’ follows the age-old “runaway couple” formula, blending elements of comedy, romance, and suspense.

5. Knight and Day (2010)

Starring the hit pair of action stars Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz, this action comedy chronicles June Havens, a woman unwittingly caught up in the dangerous schedules of secret agent Roy Miller. Never telling her the entire story — or his real identity — Roy manages to save June at the last moment a number of times, blossoming into a romance as they evade even more threats and uncover a major conspiracy. Like Gary and Madison, the couple in the James Mangold directorial has to stick together for every reason other than love. When all the action succumbs Roy and June into accepting their fate, they decide to ignore some major trust issues, making way for forthcoming tension. Mixing romance, comedy, and action, both films center on ordinary individuals who become a part of a massive picture.

4. Bernie (2011)

Uniting Shirley MacLaine, Matthew McConaughey, and Jack Black, ‘Bernie,’ inspired by true events, unravels the story of Bernie Tiede (Black), a beloved mortician in a small Texas town who befriends a wealthy widow, Marjorie Nugent. When the millionaire woman is found murdered, Bernie finds himself as the primary suspect in the investigation that ensues. With an acclaimed performance from Black, ‘Bernie’ brings forth dark humor in its otherwise grim storyline, thanks to the satirical perspective on small-town dynamics.

Directed by Richard Linklater himself, ‘Bernie’ also had a small contribution to the production of ‘Hit Man.’ Also a biographical black comedy, the movie is credited for uniting Linklater with Skip Hollandsworth and is also based on a column of his, ‘Midnight in the Garden of East Texas.’ Though it’s not rooted in romance, ‘Bernie’ explores unusual relationships set against a backdrop of crime and morality. The mix of true crime elements witnesses the two projects dealing with various similar tropes, including a looming suspicion of murder on its protagonists.

3. The Mexican (2001)

An underrated affair given the standards of its three leads, this Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, and James Gandolfini-starrer is an action-adventure with frequent doses of romance and humor. The story follows Jerry Welbach, a reluctant criminal tasked with retrieving a valuable antique pistol known as “The Mexican” from the southern country. Jerry’s journey keeps on becoming complicated by various mishaps and an uneven romance with his girlfriend, Samantha, who wants him to leave the mob.

Directed by Gore Verbinski, ‘The Mexican’ shares similarities with ‘Hit Man’ through its backdrop of a crime thriller masked by a romantic comedy. Both films center on characters caught in dangerous and unpredictable situations against their wish while their significant other’s involvement raises the bar of stakes. The mix of light-hearted moments amidst all the assassins and drug dealings makes ‘The Mexican’ a good match for ‘Hit Man.’

2. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005)

An R-rated comedy from Shane Black in his signature style, ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang’ is a full-blown affair compared to the filmmaker’s most projects, thanks to its neo-noir surroundings, espionage-like setting, higher body count, and nudity. Featuring Robert Downey Jr., Val Kilmer, and Michelle Monaghan, the sharply written screenplay follows Harry Lockhart, a petty thief who accidentally auditions for a movie role while on the run from the police. Sent to Los Angeles for a screen test, Harry is paired with private detective “Gay” Perry van Shrike to prepare for the role. However, the con artist soon becomes a suspect in a real-life murder mystery involving his childhood crush, Harmony Lane.

‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang’ shuffles several of the tropes seen in ‘Hit Man’ here and there, such as undercover operations, mistaken identities, and murder. The movies are among very few to explore blurred lines between reality and performance, thanks to Powell and Downey’s on-screen personas playing their own fake selves to deceive the criminals and law enforcement. The leads are seen caught in a web of crime and deception after going over the edge with a woman despite potential repercussions.

1. Charade (1963)

Often dubbed as the “greatest Alfred Hitchcock movie Hitchcock never made,” ‘Charade’ justifies both its titles. Directed by Stanley Donen, the movie blends every blooming genre from the final years of Hollywood’s golden era, from raising the temperature with the romantic comedy between Audrey Hepburn and Cary Grant to lowering it down with a classic film-noir. The story follows Hepburn as Regina Lampert, who discovers her late husband was involved in criminal activities and that several men are after a fortune he stole. Teaming up with the mysterious Peter Joshua, Reggie must bear the wrath of “at least” three criminals who are after her life.

A series of twists and deceptions in Paris, the suspense and mystery in ‘Charade’ successfully complements its romance and humor, resembling that of ‘Hit Man.’ Both films feature protagonists who find themselves in over their heads, relying on wit and resilience to navigate dangerous situations. The interplay between Hepburn and Grant’s characters mirrors the chemistry and tension seen between Glen Powell and Adria Arjona. Two uncannily similar details arrive with the number of fake personas Gary and Peter keep to mask their true selves and the person or organization they work for.

Read More: Where Was Hit Man Filmed?