Released back in 2014, director Michael Roskam’s The Drop quietly established itself as a worthy addition to the American crime-drama genre. With a smartly written script (adapted by Dennis Lehane from his short story “Animal Rescue”), there’s just enough action, drama and intrigue to keep us hooked. Featuring another superb performance from the ever versatile Tom Hardy, his chemistry with the late James Gandolfini (in his final performance) is notable. We’ve included 5 movies below that all share similarities, from the theme, to actors, to other adaptations based on Lehane’s works.
Here are our recommended picks for movies similar to The Drop:
1. The Departed
Swapping the streets of New York City for Boston, what better place to start our list than with the 2006 Martin Scorsese masterpiece, The Departed. As The Drop was originally written with Dorchester, Boston in mind – before relocating to the Bronx – at times, it’s grittiness feels very similar to The Departed.
Instead of the one-two punch of Hardy and Gandolfini, fans of The Departed are treated to a ridiculous ensemble of talent including Leonard DiCaprio, Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, and more. Watch if you like: themes of The Drop.
2. Killing Them Softly
Next up we have Andrew Dominik’s highly violent and visceral crime movie – Killing Them Softly. The links to The Drop are littered throughout, whether it’s through the illegal mob protected money that gets stolen or in another great appearance from Gandolfini.
While the story ultimately runs a different course, it shares the tension that is simmering just below the surface. It’s the perfect movie for fans of The Drop. Watch if you like: Crime virtuoso James Gandolfini.
3. A History of Violence
Thematically, A History of Violence is quite similar to The Drop. However, instead of the action kicking off with an unassuming bartender getting robbed, this time around two robbers attempt to hold up a small-town diner. There’s more to the eye of the diner owner (played by Viggo Mortensen) as he expertly takes down the attackers.
As with The Drop, themes of conflict and loyalty are interwoven in the story as it’s centered on a character who tries to leave his past behind. Watch if you like: Riveting action-crime thrillers.
4. Donnie Brasco
Mike Newell’s epic triumph, Donnie Brasco, features an older Al Pacino once again playing a senior mafioso. The story chronicles his introduction and friendship of jewelry thief – Donnie Brasco – who turns out to be an undercover FBI agent.
Bringing together electric performances from Pacino and Johnny Depp, it’s a crime movie that will have you on the edge of your seat throughout. Watch if you like: Al Pacino/twists and turns.
5. Mystic River
And last but not least, we have another movie adapted from the work of Dennis Lehane – Mystic River. Returning to the streets of Boston, this taught and tense affair is about the murder of a young woman and the steps taken by her father to find the killer.
As with The Drop, there are elements of organized crime and violence present but it is a much bleaker affair. Garnering various nominations and awards for the stars Sean Penn and Tim Robbins, it’s an enthralling and powerful feature that will hypnotize you right from the off. Watch if you like: Dennis Lehane crime-drama.