Man on Fire fans delighted as Denzel Washington 2004 sleeper hit storms into Netflix chart

The film has become a surprise hit on Netflix

Elizabeth Aubrey
Thursday 23 September 2021 22:40
Denzel Washington interview
Leer en Español

One of Denzel Washington’s most underrated films has become a surprise hit on Netflix.

The film, Man on Fire, was made in 2004 and saw Washington team up with late director Tony Scott. The pair had previously worked together on Crimson Tide.

Washington stars as John W Creasy, a former CIA officer who is hired by a wealthy family to protect their daughter, Pita (played by Dakota Fanning) because of some recent kidnappings. Pita is eventually taken, leaving Creasy on a mission to catch those responsible.

The film earned more than $130 million (£95 million) at the box office and is a firm favourite amongst Washington’s fans, but it wasn’t well-received by critics. The film currently has a 35 per cent rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

The BBC wrote at the time: “Po-faced, dull and sadistic, Man On Fire is a major disappointment from the Crimson Tide team of Denzel Washington and Tony Scott”, while The Independent said: “If it’s just Scott’s way of saying, ‘Get a load of this, Quentin’, the speed of response (12 years since Reservoir Dogs) leaves something to be desired.”

However, the film has stormed into Netflix’s “most viewed” charts on the UK this week since its addition onto the streaming platform earlier this month.

Fans on social media have also been reacting to the film’s inclusion on Netflix, with one writing: “Man on Fire added to Netflix, the best film ever made!” Another added: “A must watch on Netflix”. You can see some more of the reaction here:

Washington and Scott also worked together on films Deja Vu, The Taking of Pelham 123 and Unstoppable before Scott’s death in 2012.

Speaking shortly after his death, Washington said: “Tony Scott was a great director, a genuine friend and it is unfathomable to think that he is now gone. He had a tremendous passion for life and for the art of filmmaking and was able to share this passion with all of us through his cinematic brilliance. My family sends their prayers and deepest condolences to the entire Scott family.”

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments