With a lot of action mixed expertly with humor, as well as the strong performances from the cast, it is easy to see why Kingsman: The Secret Service was spun into one of the most well-known action movie franchises of recent years.

However, as unique as Kingsman can be, plenty of other movies have also done interesting things within the spy genre and even managed to capture some of the same magic.

Updated on November 30th, 2020 by Mark Birrell: The Kingsman series shows ambitions to only get bigger and better and so we thought we’d follow suit and add an extra 5 movies to our list for fans of the franchise to appreciate if they’re looking for more of the same or for something that laid the groundwork for the Kingsman adaptations. From spy movie history like Harry Palmer to modern-day stars still pushing the boundaries, here are 15 action-comedy-thrillers to check out if you like the Kingsman movies.

15 Mission: Impossible – Fallout (2018)

Tom Cruise’s signature action-thriller franchise showed no signs of slowing down in its sixth installment, with the star finding new ways to up the ante with the series’ first long-haul director, Christopher McQuarrie.

Mission: Impossible – Fallout sees a greatest hits compilation of side characters come together to form Cruise’s superteam this time around as they fight to prevent nuclear armageddon once again. Fans of the Kingsman series’ playful choreography will love the dedication to the stunts and structure of any given action sequence.

14 X-Men: First Class (2011)

Before adapting Kingsman for the big screen, director Matthew Vaughn had a similarly difficult task when aiming to revive the then-floundering X-Men movie franchise.

Once a pioneer in the comic book movie genre, the cinematic X-Men were at a difficult crossroads, trying to revive the series with a new cast taking on old characters. It may be nowhere near as graphic as any of the Kingsman movies but First Class certainly has plenty of Vaughn’s flair running throughout it, not to mention a distinctly swingin’ sixties James Bond vibe to it that Kingsman fans will definitely recognize.

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13 Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997)

In terms of send-ups and homages of the spy movies of the sixties and seventies, you can do no better than Mike Myers’ classic Austin Powers series, particularly the first installment.

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Myers’ titular sixties spy is thawed out, Captain America style, to face his arch-nemesis in a modern world and the humor is broader, zanier, and cruder than even Kingsman‘s.

12 The Ipcress File (1965)

One of the many spy icons being spoofed in both the Austin Powers movies and the Kingsman series, beyond the obvious James Bond references, is the fellow literary-turned-movie secret agent Harry Palmer, most famously played by Michael Caine. (His look is what Austin Powers’ and the Kingsman organization’s thick-rimmed glasses are in reference to, as is Caine’s casting in each series, essentially.)

A much more dour approach to the genre than the upbeat James Bond series, Caine’s first outing as Palmer is as significant in the evolution of the spy movie as Dr. No.

11 Atomic Blonde (2017)

Adapted from the 2012 graphic novel ‘The Coldest City’, Atomic Blonde stars Charlize Theron as a Cold War superspy caught in the middle of a murderous game of double-crosses in Berlin.

As slow and weighty as the plot may sound, the movie is really anything but. Original John Wick co-director David Leitch injects plenty of that long-take, meticulously-choreographed, fun into the movie’s action sequences, all of it making for an intense rush of colorful bare-knuckle fun.

10 Spy (2015)

Spy has many shining comedic moments throughout and brilliantly showcases Melissa McCarthy’s strong comedic presence. Directed by Paul Feig, the movie stands out by putting more emphasis on the humor, but still maintaining a nice balance of action as well.

Both Spy and Kingsman focus on unlikely candidates stepping into the role of a suave international spy, and each offers a different spin on slapstick and gross-out jokes.

9 American Ultra (2015)

American Ultra has become a bit of a cult movie since its initial release. Starring Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart, the story follows a couple as they run from a squad of deadly agents trying to assassinate them.

With humorous performances from Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart in the lead roles, it’s easy to see why some hold it in such high regard, despite an unfortunate run at the box office. Though it is far from a traditional depiction of spies in movies, American Ultra is still a great watch for any fan of the Kingsman franchise.

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8 Casino Royale (2006)

There’s no denying the love that Kingsman shows for the various spy movies that came before it. Because of this, it only seems right to include at least one James Bond movie on this list.

Casino Royale was the first entry in the franchise to feature Daniel Craig in the lead role, but also breathed some new life into the franchise overall. With many classic elements thrown into a modernized story, Casino Royale is the perfect place for new fans to jump in, while also being a simply great action/spy movie on its own.

7 Olympus Has Fallen (2013)

Though it doesn’t focus nearly as much on the spy/secret agent aspects as Kingsman does, Olympus Has Fallen is still a very enjoyable movie of a similar caliber. Especially in regards to graphic violence, this movie, as well as its two sequels, have done an exceptional job with their stunt choreography, which is definitely something it shares with the likes of Kingsman.

Despite the great action in both series, Olympus Has Fallen does lack the same type of humor that Kingsman does, though a few good jokes still manage to find their way in.

6 Sherlock Holmes (2009)

Following his success as Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr. took on the role of Sherlock Holmes himself in the 2009 movie. Though it is more of a mystery movie than a spy movie, the levels of deception and entertainment really mimic that of the Kingsman franchise as well.

Considering how both movies feature clever twists and turns, strong villains, and great performances from Mark Strong, the two franchises have a bit more in common than some may realize.

5 The Losers (2010)

In an age when comic book movies are all the rage, it is easy for some to slip through the cracks, as The Losers did for many.

The movie offers a lot of really smart humor throughout its action-packed narrative, featuring big names such as Chris Evans, Idris Elba, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.

4 Now You See Me (2013)

Now You See Me managed to bring some magic back to theaters in a more literal sense when it came out in 2013. With a very strong cast, this heist movie was as unique as it was charming.

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Though the sequel didn’t perform as well, the fact that it didn’t take itself too seriously was part of what attracted audiences to it in the first place. Filled with suspense and humor, Kingsman fans will surely enjoy this magical crime movie.

3 The Bourne Identity (2002)

All of the Bourne movies are great action thrillers, the first, however, introduces a green superspy into the world of espionage in a very unique way, as Kingsman: The Secret Service does.

As far as its relation to Kingsman, the Bourne series is definitely much more serious and doesn’t feature anywhere near as many tropes from other spy movies. However, core elements of the genre are still there, albeit in a much more realistic way.

2 The Man From U.N.C.L.E. (2015)

Despite the middling reviews that The Man From U.N.C.L.E. received when it first launched, many have come to really appreciate the movie in the few years since it left theaters.

Thanks to strong performances, and Impeccable comedic timing, from the impressive cast, it is easy to see why so many feel it’s underrated.

1 Kick-Ass (2010)

Matthew Vaughn’s filmmaking style and brand of humor have proven to be quite successful for many movies. From massive blockbuster movies such as X-Men: First Class to smaller ones like Stardust, Vaughn has certainly proven that he knows how to make an entertaining movie.

Like Kingsman, Kick-Ass is another comic book movie that distances itself from others in the genre, and fans of Vaughn are likely to find a lot of similarities in its tone, humor, and violence thanks in no small part o the original comics’ shared writer, Mark Millar.

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