The Ryan Reynolds smash hit climbing Netflix charts
(Credit: Netflix)

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The Ryan Reynolds smash hit climbing Netflix charts

Even though he’s become something of a Netflix regular after headlining Michael Bay’s 6 Underground, time-travelling adventure The Adam Project, and the streaming service’s biggest-ever original hit Red Notice, Ryan Reynolds remains capable of putting butts in cinematic seats.

In an age where recognisable properties and established franchises are often the main draw to entice audiences towards their local multiplex, Reynolds has established himself as being among the last of a dying breed after proving himself to be one of the few A-listers who can open a movie based largely on their involvement.

The first two Deadpool flicks, The Hitman’s Bodyguard, Detective Pikachu, Free Guy, and John Krasinski’s IF have all soared at the box office with Reynolds leading the line, so it was inevitable that when he was partnered up with another bona fide drawing card the end result was going to be nothing other than unqualified success.

Sure enough, when he sparred opposite Denzel Washington in 2012’s action thriller Safe House, the film comfortably cleared $200million in ticket sales. The main selling point was always going to be the prospect of watching the two A-listers bounce off each other from opposite sides of the law, and in that regard, Easy Money director Daniel Espinosa’s Hollywood debut didn’t disappoint.

Washington has a blast gently gnawing on the scenery as the fantastically named Tobin Frost, a disgraced CIA operative who turned to a life of crime. Reynolds’ rookie Matt Weston spends his days hanging around safe houses that largely go unoccupied, at least until he ends up plunged into a battle for survival when the bolthole is placed under attack.

Following the standard action movie template of ‘polar opposites form a reluctant mutual alliance that blossoms into mutual respect by the third act’, the mismatched duo need to stay one step ahead of their pursuers and figure out who wants them dead while ensuring they’ve got eyes in the back of their head to prevent the other from committing any additional acts of treachery.

It’s an easy sell for a blockbuster and one that Netflix subscribers have embraced with open arms after Safe House emerged as the seventh most-watched feature on the platform’s worldwide watch list. Big stars are almost always guaranteed to do big numbers on-demand, and in the modern age, they don’t come much bigger or more popular than Reynolds and Washington.

There was even talk of a potential sequel for a while that never materialised, so as it stands, Safe House is a strictly one-and-done effort boasting two top stars operating at the top of their charismatic game.