10 Biker Movies Like The Bikeriders You Must See

Written and directed by Jeff Nichols, ‘The Bikeriders’ is a crime film about the lives of the Vandals MC, a Chicago motorcycle club in the 1960s. Portraying the club’s evolution from harmless bikers to a group of outcasts involved in a dangerous organized crime syndicate, the historical drama takes inspiration from Danny Lyon’s 1967 photo book of the same name. Starring Jodie Comer, Austin Butler, Tom Hardy, and Michael Shannon, the action film attempts to explore the personal and communal transformations within the biker gang. For viewers who enjoyed ‘The Bikeriders,’ here are 10 similar films you might find interesting.

10. Wild Hogs (2007)

More of a comedic affair, ‘Wild Hogs’ follows four middle-aged friends as they embark on a cross-country motorcycle trip to break free from their day-to-day lives. Their journey, however, takes an unexpected turn when they encounter a real motorcycle gang, the Del Fuegos, leading to a series of humorous and adventurous events. The road comedy, directed by Walt Becker, features a star-studded cast featuring Tim Allen, John Travolta, Martin Lawrence, William H. Macy, Marisa Tomei, and Ray Liotta.

Although ‘Wild Hogs’ is rooted in more familiar themes such as friendship and adventure than ‘The Bikeriders,’ it nevertheless focuses on the bonds formed through motorcycle culture. The film portrays how the characters’ lives are transformed by their experiences on the road. It depicts personal growth, reversing the fallout in ‘The Bikeriders.’ Moreover, the contrast between the suburban protagonists and the tough bikers adds a comedic twist to the shared theme of seeking freedom and identity.

9. Biker Boyz (2003)

Based on journalist Michael Gougis’ eponymous report from New Times LA, director Reggie Rock Bythewood’s action drama is the story of a young motorcycle racer named Jalil “Kid” Galloway (Derek Luke), who aspires to become the leader of an underground motorcycle club. After the death of his father, Kid sets out to prove himself and challenge the current racing champion and the King of Cali, Smoke (Lawrence Fishburne). More than the motorcycle racing subculture, ‘Biker Boyz’ thrives in its commentary on legacy and succession. Much like ‘The Bikeriders,’ its backdrop of motorcycle clubs and the intense rivalries that arise within them highlights similar themes ranging from loyalty to the competitive spirit within such gangs.

8. Stone Cold (1991)

‘Stone Cold’ follows Joe Huff, an undercover cop who infiltrates a violent biker gang known as the Brotherhood. Tasked with taking down the gang from the inside, Huff must navigate the dangerous world of outlaw bikers while maintaining his cover and going through an unsettling evolution. Directed by Craig R. Baxley, the action drama brings a gritty and harmful portrayal of the lifestyle of motorcycle gangs to the screen. Similar to ‘The Bikeriders,’ it explores a biker gang’s internal workings and power struggles. Its themes of deception, loyalty, and the blurred lines between law enforcement and criminal activity provide a thrilling parallel to the complex narrative of the Jeff Nichols actioner.

7. Hell Ride (2008)

Filmmaker Larry Bishop wrote, directed, produced, and stars in this outlaw biker journey of three members of the Victor motorcycle gang. As the bikers seek revenge for the murder of one of their lovers, ‘Hell Ride’ becomes an excessively graphic affair each time its characters resort to violence to resolve their confrontations. Stuffed with betrayal and a relentless fight to administer vigilante justice, the rules in the biker subculture of ‘Hell Ride’ are not dissimilar to ‘The Bikeriders.’ Both crime dramas get intense and often violent in their relentless pursuit of “an eye for an eye.” Moreover, both films opt for commercially-driven plots and stylized portrayals of motorcycle gangs, glorifying the positive aspects of their dynamics.

6. Breaking Away (1979)

A beloved classic in the coming-of-age category, ‘Breaking Away’ is more of a sports drama that follows the story of four teenagers from Bloomington, Indiana, who are trying to find their places in the world after high school. The central character, Dave, becomes obsessed with cycling and Italian culture, leading him and his friends to compete against college students in a local cycling race.

Directed by Peter Yates, it explores an individual’s ambition and the discouraging role of societal expectations. While it lacks the criminal elements of ‘The Bikeriders,’ ‘Breaking Away’ similarly focuses on a close-knit group facing challenges and transformations, including the hardships of finding acceptance. Additionally, its portrayal of personal and group dynamics and its emphasis on passion and determination resonates with the spirit of ‘The Bikeriders,’ albeit in a different context.

5. Outlaws (2017)

Also known as ‘1%’, this Australian flick centers on the fictional Copperheads motorcycle club, led by President Knuck. The story follows Paddo, the club’s vice president, who is managing the gang while Knuck serves time in prison. As the latter’s release approaches, tensions escalate, leading to a power struggle within the gang. Paddo’s ambitions and loyalty are tested as he becomes the central figure in internal rivalries and external threats, all while trying to protect his brother and maintain control.

Directed by Stephen McCallum, ‘The Outlaws’ ties together elements of power, loyalty, and betrayal through an outlaw motorcycle club. Similar to ‘The Bikeriders,’ the internal dynamics and conflicts between gangsters highlight the movie’s more important and humanistic view of how leadership and personal ambitions can clash with group loyalty. Neither film leaves anything to the imagination when it comes to portraying the gritty, often violent reality of life within biker gangs and the personal struggles of gang members.

4. Beyond the Law (1993)

Larry Ferguson’s gangster drama, ‘Beyond the Law,’ is based on the real-life experiences of an undercover cop named Dan Black article. Ferguson wrote the screenplay after reading about Black in Lawrence Linderman’s report, ‘Undercover Angel,’ in Playboy magazine. Charlie Sheen stars as Daniel Saxon, a fictionalized version of Black, who infiltrates a notorious biker gang. As Daniel gets increasingly involved with the gang and the underground world, he begins to blur the lines between his professional duties and the gang’s illegal exercises.

As the title suggests, ‘Beyond the Law’ is as much of an ethical drama as it is an action thriller, often subtly commenting on identity, morality, and the challenges of undercover work. Not dissimilar to ‘The Bikeriders,’ it examines the internal conflicts and self-doubt faced by its protagonist. Its focus on personal transformation, potential betrayals, and the struggle to keep one’s true identity a secret amidst a criminal environment aligns well with the themes explored in ‘The Bikeriders.’

3. The Loveless (1981)

Academy Award-winning filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow joined hands with Monty Montgomery to co-direct ‘The Loveless.’ Starring Willem Dafoe as Vance — another one of his underappreciated outings — the 80s film follows the story of his motorcycle gang when the members stop in a small Southern town on their way to the Daytona races. The presence of a rebellious and violent gang disrupts the quiet town, leading to a clash between the locals and the outsiders.

With themes of rebellion, societal norms, and clashes between different worlds at its center. ‘The Loveless’ focuses on a motorcycle gang’s impact on a small community and, in doing so, resonates with the outsider status and cultural tension seen in ‘The Bikeriders.’ The character-driven narrative and the exploration of 1950s biker culture — not distant from the latter’s 1960s backdrop of the Austin Butler movie — provide a thought-provoking and stylistically rich commentary on transformation and conflict.

2. The Wild Angels (1966)

‘The Wild Angels’ is a classic biker film directed by Roger Corman, who helped establish the genre in the New Hollywood Era. It tells the story of Heavenly Blues (Peter Fonda), the leader of the Angels motorcycle gang. When the gang attempts to retrieve a stolen motorcycle, their path violently collides with both rival gangs and law enforcement, thus becoming a chaotic mess that only has room for tragic consequences. ‘The Wild Angels’ utilized the popular yet vanishing Western genre tropes — such as rebellion, freedom, and the outlaw lifestyle — to the 1960s via contemporary biker culture.

Much like ‘The Bikeriders,’ the Fonda-starrer portrays the collectivism the members of a particular gang are obliged to live by and their defiance of societal norms. The film’s raw depiction of the rebellious spirit and the inevitable repercussions of living on the edge resonates with the rise and transformation of the Vandals MC in the Jeff Nichols directorial. Furthermore, despite a six-decade-long gap between the two, the films authentically embraces the biker subculture of the 1960s.

1. Mad Max (1979)

An all-time blockbuster, ‘Mad Max’ is a classic that requires no introduction. Directed by George Miller, the 1979 Australian film marked the debut of the iconic character Max Rockatansky and elevated Mel Gibson to the highest of heights in the industry. Set in a post-apocalyptic world, this dystopian action thriller follows Max, a police officer seeking revenge against a vicious motorcycle gang that killed his family. As Max hunts down the gang members, he becomes increasingly consumed by his enemies’ rage and vengeance.

Though it launched a highly successful franchise, ‘Mad Max‘ remains the sole entry that utilized motorcycle gangs as the stepping stone of the familiar tale of justice, survival, and how a lawless world decimates societal order. Its gritty portrayal of biker gangs and their violent clashes with law enforcement are repeated in ‘The Bikeriders.’ Both films primarily rely on adrenaline-fueled pursuits and the moral ambiguities their protagonists face to highlight the chaotic and dangerous order their worlds ride on.

Read More: The Bikeriders: Is the Movie Inspired by Real Events?