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25th Apr 2024

Game of Thrones star unrecognisable in gritty crime thriller added to Netflix

Simon Kelly

It’s among the most-watched movies on the streamer this week

Netflix has re-added a gritty thriller starring a Game of Thrones star who looks truly unrecognisable from his days in Westeros.

Shot Caller stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister in GOT) as a well-to-do family man, who, after being incarcerated for his role in a deadly DUI accident, transforms himself into a hardened prison gangster to survive the difficult conditions of the California prison system.

Directed by Ric Roman Waugh, the 2017 film also features an excellent supporting cast, including Omari Hardwick (Power), Jon Bernthal (The Punisher) and Holt McCallany (Mindhunter).

Particular praise was given by critics to Coster-Waldau’s transformative performance throughout the movie, going from clean cut family man to a cold-blooded badass.

Despite only a 70% Critics Score on Rotten Tomatoes, it has an 81% Audience Score and, going by its standing in the Netflix most-watched movies this week, Shot Caller is gaining a cult following with its re-addition.

Shot Caller has also been the subject of a recent episode of popular movies podcast The Rewatchables, where it ranked among host Bill Simmons’ favourite prison films, ahead of the likes of American History X and Midnight Express.

Game of Thrones star unrecognisable in gritty crime thriller added to Netflix

Check out some of the positive reviews from critics upon Shot Caller’s release in cinemas in 2017.

The Guardian – “My expectations here were tepid. But Shot Caller turns out to be a really taut, tense, prison-set thriller, a little like Jacques Audiard’s A Prophet and longform television such as Breaking Bad or The Wire.”

Time Out – “If you imagine Andy Dufresne embarking on a hyper-violent gangland crime spree, you’ve got the premise of this thriller about the corrosive power of prison.”

The Observer – “Achieving a hardy balance to a complex character and heightened importance to an otherwise terminally depressing study in total immorality, the star is powerful and so riveting you can’t take your eyes off him.”

Variety – “Waugh forgoes cheap action-movie gimmicks, offering up instead a haunting psychological portrait of an intelligent man forced to completely reinvent himself before he can even dream of seeking redemption for his previous sins.”

You can watch Shot Caller on Netflix right now.

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Netflix