Directed by Ric Roman Waugh, ‘Snitch’ is an action-packed movie that stars Dwayne Johnson and revolves around John Matthews, who goes undercover to help his son caught up in a tough minimum sentencing jam. Upon its release in 2009, the movie not only rocked the box office but also let Dwayne Johnson flex his acting muscles beyond his biceps, showing off his versatile talents.
Inspired by a true story, the gripping and heart-pounding thriller is loaded with nail-biting action scenes. Yet, beneath the adrenaline rush, it takes a deep dive into the moral conundrums of the war on drugs and the far-reaching fallout of mandatory minimum sentences. Want more of that thrilling suspense? You’re in luck! You can watch most of these movies similar to ‘Snitch’ on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime.
8. Miss Bala (2019)
This 2019 film, helmed by Catherine Hardwicke, puts the audience into the shoes of Gloria (Gina Rodriguez), a young lady who, after witnessing a killing at a bar, finds herself drawn into the treacherous underbelly of a Mexican drug gang. The cartel has abducted Gloria’s closest friend, and in order to save her, she must become a DEA agent and tread a dangerous road.
‘Miss Bala’ is an exciting and thought-provoking movie that will have you on the edge of your seat from start to finish. Gina Rodriguez is fantastic in the role of Gloria, a woman put in an untenable circumstance where she must rely on her wits to get through, similar to John Matthews in ‘Snitch.’ The film likewise elucidates the struggles of those who find themselves in the crosshairs of both authorities and nefarious organizations.
7. Gringo (2018)
In this Nash Edgerton flick, we dive into the woes of Harold Soyinka (David Oyelowo), a mild-mannered and dependable pharmaceutical executive. He toils away for a company that happens to produce medicinal marijuana. However, when the company sets its sights on expanding into Mexico, Harold gets the ticket to negotiate with their Mexican counterparts. Little does he know that this journey will rope him into a treacherous web of kidnappings, drug deals, and corporate power plays.
‘Gringo’ and ‘Snitch’ take ordinary people and drop them into the deep end of criminal chaos. In ‘Gringo,’ Harold shifts from a mild-mannered executive to someone involved with a cartel. Meanwhile, in ‘Snitch,’ John battles drug cartels to rescue his son. Both films highlight the moral quandaries regular people confront when thrust into unforeseen circumstances.
6. Running with the Devil (2019)
This 2019 Jason Cabell movie tracks a drug cartel’s distribution network as it moves cocaine from Colombia to the United States. The film features Cook (Nicolas Cage) as a seasoned cocaine courier and Laurence Fishburne as an influential and formidable drug boss. Tensions mount as the cartel’s business begins to fall apart, and the hunt for the root of the issue becomes everyone’s top priority.
Both Cook and John are regular people who find themselves in unusual situations, forcing them to act in ways they normally wouldn’t in order to protect the people they care about. They represent the ethical dilemmas that people encounter when they are thrust into the criminal world. Though the film doesn’t chart new territory in the crime thriller realm, the film gains its footing thanks to the commendable performances delivered by its lead actors.
5. End of Watch (2012)
David Ayer’s 2012 masterpiece, ‘End of Watch,’ is an explosive criminal thriller taking an interesting found footage approach. The movie revolves around Mike Zavala (Michael Pea) and Brian Taylor (Jake Gyllenhaal), who serve as Los Angeles policemen as they investigate a particularly unsafe and hostile region of town. Their nightly patrol leads them down a path where they inadvertently cross paths with a dangerous drug cartel, putting their lives and the lives of their loved ones in danger.
Both ‘End of Watch’ and ‘Snitch’ explores the personal costs of doing the right thing, with their heroes facing drug cartels and criminals, respectively. ‘End of Watch’ also highlights the extreme lengths to which people will go to redeem themselves or to save the lives of those they care about.
4. The Mule (2018)
While not a mirror image of ‘Snitch,’ this 2018 Clint Eastwood flick also delves into cartel chaos and the ensuing dangers that tagged along for the ride. The film is based on the real story of World War II hero Leo Sharp, who, during his 80s, takes a job as a drug runner for a Mexican gang to support his loved ones. Eastwood portrays Earl Stone, a horticulturist who goes on to become one of the most notorious drug mules of all time by shipping massive amounts of narcotics across the country while avoiding any encounter with authorities.
Earl Stone’s decision to dabble in the drug game for his family’s sake has a zany resemblance to John’s self-sacrificing quest to help his son. Although ‘The Mule’ might not deliver the adrenaline rush of some crime dramas, it truly shines in its character-focused narrative. Clint Eastwood’s depiction of a man seeking redemption, similar to John Matthews, in his later years is a standout element of the film.
3. Out of the Furnace (2013)
In this 2013 Scott Cooper magnum opus, Christian Bale and Casey Affleck step into the shoes of Russell and Rodney Baze, residents of a declining steel town in Pennsylvania. Rusell, a blue-collar worker, gets out of jail after serving time for driving under the influence and homicide. On the other hand, Rodney, his younger brother, gets involved in a violent underground combat ring.
Moreover, the story builds suspense slowly and steadily without resorting to unnecessary action, instead relying on character development and ethical conundrums. ‘Out of the Furnace’ and ‘Snitch’ are like two peas in a pod when it comes to themes. Both movies follow protagonists who roll up their sleeves and make some hard calls to shield their kin. They’re stuck in situations where right and wrong are like tangled pretzels, one diving into the world of crime and the other chasing justice.
2. Traffic (2000)
Directed by Steven Soderbergh, this 2000 release moves past traditional storytelling and weaves multiple story arcs together. The film, starring Michael Douglas, Benicio Del Toro, and Catherine Zeta-Jones, explores the challenges faced by three characters: a renowned judge assigned to deal with drug-related problems, Mexican law enforcement wading into murky waters, and a regular housewife drawn into her husband’s illicit drug dealings.
When put together, these stories offer a fascinating look into the shadowy underworld of the drug trade. The scene where Robert Wakefield confronts the cartel to protect his daughter resembles John’s choice to go undercover to secure a reduced sentence for his son. ‘Traffic’ won four Academy Awards and received glowing reviews from critics for its in-depth look into the lingering problem.
1. Prisoners (2013)
The story revolves around the sinister abduction of two young girls before Christmas in middle-class suburbia. Detective Loki (Jake Gyllenhaal) is put on an investigation after many days with little progress. Keller Dover (Hugh Jackman) as well as Franklin Birch (Terrence Howard), the girls’ parents, get frantic and decide to take things upon themselves, which leads to their terrifying slide into desperation and madness.
Both movies share more than a passing resemblance. They both spotlight a father’s unwavering determination to sacrifice for his child, all while tackling the theme of familial love, redemption, and more. Moreover, the cinematography by Roger Deakins creates a spooky and scary ambiance and will have you guessing till the very end.
Read More: Is Snitch Based on a True Story?