Gladiator (2000, dir. Ridley Scott)

A famed general, condemned to death in a coup, seeks revenge on Roman emperor Commodus for the murder of his family. Vivid and muscular historical drama, with excellent performances, solid action, and a keen visual sense. A Hollywood history; the inspirations are less actual events than the epics of the 1950s and early 1960s.

Rambo: Last Blood (2019, dir. Adrian Grunberg)

A Vietnam veteran seeks revenge on the cartel that kidnapped a daughter figure. Hints of a more elegiac contemporary Western linger, but the released cut is a lumpy body-count flick with linear plotting and an oddly perfunctory attitude to the staging of its many kills. Best thing is the end credits, which strike the right tone.

Cold Pursuit (2019, dir. Hans Petter Moland)

A snowplough driver seeks revenge on the drug dealers who killed his son. Black comedy English-language remake of the director’s 2014 In Order of Disappearance/Kraftidioten. Lacks the transgressive edge of the original; a good cast doesn’t have much to do.

John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019, dir. Chad Stahelski)

Wick, now excommunicado, seeks a way back. Part 3 expands on the series mythology and develops both the character’s backstory and the action choreography. Not all of the plot makes sense, but for the main part, this is exhilarating physical entertainment with some dark humour.

Peppermint (2018, dir. Pierre Morel)

Five years after her family’s murder, a mother returns to the US for revenge. Straightforward action fantasy with a committed lead performance and an outsider’s view of LA. Not great, but there’s a couple of interesting plot wrinkles along the way.

Iceman (2017, dir. Felix Randau)

A neolithic man seeks revenge on the marauders who killed his family. Splendid prehistoric Western, using genre tropes to comment on grief, loss, religion and human relations with the natural in all kinds of interesting ways. Recommended.

Upgrade (2018, dir. Leigh Whannell)

An augmented car mechanic tracks down the men who killed his wife and left him in a wheelchair. Fast, fun and brutal SF/horror hybrid with an excellent physical lead performance and lots to recommend it. The kinda genre movie they don’t often make any more.