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On 20th July, Sean Penn’s THE GUNMAN arrives on Blu-ray, DVD and digital platforms, in which he plays Jim Terrier (Sean PennGangster Squad, Mystic River), a hit-man who desperately tries to escape his murky past.

A slick, action-packed thriller, THE GUNMAN is directed by Pierre Morel (Taken), and features an all-star cast that, as well as heavyweights like Penn, also includes Javier Bardem (Skyfall, No Country For Old Men), Idris Elba (Pacific Rim, Luther), Ray Winstone (Sexy Beast, The Departed), and Mark Rylance (Blitz, Wolf Hall).  To celebrate the release of THE GUNMAN, we take a look at Sean Penn’s top 10 films to date…


Eight years after fleeing the Congo following his assassination of that country’s minister of mining, former hit-man Terrier is left juggling his need to atone for a violent past with the debilitating reality of post traumatic stress disorder. After an attempt is made on his life, Terrier flies to London to find out who wants him dead – and why. His search leads him to a reunion with Annie (Jasmine Trinca – Saint Laurent), a woman he once loved, who is now married to a very shady businessman (Javier Bardem) with dealings in Africa. Sean Penn sizzles in this high octane thriller available on EST from 13th July, 2015 and Blu-ray and DVD from 20th July, 2015.

Milk (2008)

Penn shines in this biopic film landing him his second Best Actor Oscar for his work. This film stars Penn as Harvey Milk, the gay activist whose political career was cut short when he was assassinated in 1978, and surrounds his utterly committed performance with stellar contributions from a talented supporting cast that included James Franco, Emile Hirsch, and Josh Brolin as Milk’s killer, Dan White.

The Tree of Life (2011)

The Tree of Life is the impressionistic story of a Midwestern family in the 1950’s. The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father (Brad Pitt). This film took viewers on a visceral ride through the dawn of life to its end. Throughout are great performances from an all-star cast including Sean Penn, Brad Pitt and Jessica Chastain. Penn plays the adult Jack, a lost soul in the modern world who struggled with his parent’s conflicting teachings throughout his life. It is a daring film that is ultimately unforgettable.

Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

Fast Times is everyone’s favourite stoner classic as a group of Southern California high school students live the life that every 80’s American teen dreams of: sex, drugs and rock n’ roll. Sean Penn stars as the lovable, perpetually stoned surfer, Jeff Spicoli. This is one of Penn’s most famous characters to date, and one that he will never live down! Penn stars alongside Forest Whitaker and Jennifer Jason Leigh.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

Although Sean Penn doesn’t lead in this extraordinary adventure, his role as iconic, elusive photographer Sean O’Connell is truly incredible simply because of his relentless commitment to chase a story no matter the cost. His creative view of the world is truly mystical and prompts audiences to think a bit more about life. His two most memorable lines include, “beautiful things don’t ask for attention” and “if I like a moment, for me, personally, I don’t like to have the distraction of the camera. I just want to stay in it”. Alongside Penn are Ben Stiller (Night at the Museum) and Kristin Wigg (Bridesmaids).

Colors (1988)

Colors’, starring Sean Penn and Robert Duvall as a pair of LAPD officers out to rid the streets of gang activity, makes our list because of its incredible cast; taking a tired script and making it otherwise enjoyable and memorable. The tremendous cast includes Don Cheadle (Avengers: Age of Ultron) and Maria Conchita Alonso (The Running Man).

State of Grace (1990)

In State of Grace Sean Penn stars as an undercover cop whose latest case tests his loyalty to his best friend (played by Gary Oldman) and his affections for his friend’s sister (Robin Wright). Although the plot and storylines are a bit tired and recognisable, the talent emanating from the leads of this film make it one to remember.

Casualties of War (1989)

This film stars two greats: Sean Penn and the evergreen Michael J. Fox (Back To The Future) shine in this war drama that portrays the opposing sides during the Vietnam War within an American patrol squad. The strong performances of both Penn and Fox landed this film praise and admiration by numerous critics.

Mystic River (2003)

This film was a game changer for Penn who won his first Oscar for his role as an ex-con whose daughter is brutally murdered. Penn perfectly conveys a shattered father who is desperate for revenge and closure and his Boston accent isn’t too shabby either. Clint Eastwood directed this bleak drama, which also includes the talents of Kevin Bacon, Tim Robbins and Laurence Fishburne.

At Close Range (1986)

At Close Range is the true story of an aimless Pennsylvania teen who is drawn in to his father’s life of crime. Sean Penn stars alongside his real-life brother Chris Penn in director James Foley’s crime drama about a mob boss (Christopher Walken) whose return upends the lives of his grown sons. It is a compelling story with an all-star cast that includes Keifer Sutherland and Crispin Glover.


The Gunman arrives on Blu-ray, DVD and digital platforms from 20th July, 2015, courtesy of Studio Canal.

The Blu-ray release dates for both Colors and State Of Grace are 24 August 2015 and are being released courtesy of Second Sight.

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Alton loves film. He is founder and Editor In Chief of BRWC.  Some of the films he loves are Rear Window, Superman 2, The Man With The Two Brains, Clockwise, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind, Trading Places, Stir Crazy and Punch-Drunk Love.



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