On Fridays last August, we were glued to our TVs watching the explosive third season of Strike Back. This year, though, Section 20 is on a break - and we're in serious withdrawal. Even with the brand-new video just released by Cinemax.)
What's a fan to do if you've seen every episode? If you've already seen Strike Back: Origins and read the Chris Ryan novel it was based on? Never fear - there's hope for your Scott and Stonebridge fix. We've been watching a lot of film recently, and here's our list of the six projects starring either Sullivan Stapleton or Philip Winchester that Strike Back fans should check out before season four starts in 2015.
Underbelly Files: Infiltration - Sullivan Stapleton's last project before he started on Strike Back, and watching this Australian TV-movie, you can absolutely see how he landed the role of Damien Scott. As dedicated Victorian detective Colin McLaren (pictured above), he hangs tough in a world of transplanted Italian mobsters. But he's not just the badass; Colin does more tradecraft than takedowns. Stapleton's performance also gives us a fantastic window into what makes Colin tick and, in particular, the strain that his intense career choice has on his teenage daughter, Chelsea. This is a film that works from start to finish, and the icing on the cake is that it's based on true events that took place from 1992 to 2002; it'll leave you wanting to know more. Available for streaming via Hulu Plus.
Crusoe - Six years ago, NBC took a stab at bringing Daniel Defoe's Robinson Crusoe to television, with our own Philip Winchester in the title role. The result was one of the occasions on which classic literature actually became cool. Think of it as MacGyver in the 17th century, as Philip and his flawless British accent (and great hair) save the day with neat devices and the invaluable assistance of Friday (Tongayi Chirisa). It's funnier than you'd expect, it looks great, and it's just a fun way to spend a few hours. Plus, Sam Neill and Sean Bean show up, too. What else could you ask for? Aside from more than thirteen episodes. Available on DVD.
Animal Kingdom - This is the movie that made people figure out who Sullivan Stapleton is, and he's only one awesome thing about it. Between this and the entire Underbelly series, American crime dramas look downright soft compared to Australian product. Stapleton stars as Craig, the - no surprise here - hot-tempered middle brother of a crime family headed by Janine (Academy Award nominee Jacki Weaver, who is so good it's actually uncomfortable). This flick pulls absolutely no punches, but it's in your face with purpose, rather than gratuitously so. You'll find yourself forgetting to breathe on a couple of occasions. A definite hidden gem, it also stars Guy Pearce (L.A. Confidential) and Joel Edgerton (The Great Gatsby). Available for streaming on Amazon Instant Video, Blu-Ray, and DVD.