Underrated Sheridan-verse Thriller Starring Angelina Jolie Just Arrived on Netflix

Underrated Sheridan-verse Thriller Starring Angelina Jolie Just Arrived on Netflix
Image credit: New Line Cinema

The spectacular but underrated Those Who Wish Me Dead is now on Netflix.


  • Angelina Jolie plays a smokejumper who must safeguard a hunted young boy.
  • The Netflix release was timed poorly, putting the movie head-to-head with more famous franchises.
  • Praise has been heaped on Taylor Sheridan 's direction.
  • Sheridan's work has received increasing attention over the last few years, and the writer/director/actor was recently honored by a surprising institution.

Directed by Taylor Sheridan, the action thriller was written by Sheridan, Charles Leavitt, and Michael Koryta, who also wrote the novel on which the story is based.

The Movie

There have been hundreds of films about first responders in high-risk situations – firefighters, paramedics, cops. But we bet you've never seen a movie about smokejumpers before.

In Those Who Wish Me Dead, Angelina Jolie stars as smokejumper Hannah Faber, whose job involves parachuting into the heart of forest fires. After a fire takes the life of four victims Hannah relocates to a tower in Montana, where she comes across 12-year-old Connor. The boy is on the run after his father uncovered a conspiracy and was murdered in front of him.

Connor now has incriminating information in his pocket and a pair of assassins after him. Hannah pledges to keep him safe, but the killers aren't above setting the entire forest ablaze if it means getting what they want…

Getting the Movie Made

Sheridan was never meant to direct Those Who Wish Me Dead. Originally he was brought on only to rewrite the script.

However, according to IMDB:

'...When another filmmaker dropped out of directing the film, [Sheridan] called the studio with an offer. 'If I can get Angie to do this with me, I'll direct it for you,' he said. The studio said, 'Great. You'll never get Angie.''

Well, the rest is history.

Although Angelia Jolie seems like an obvious choice for a mama-bear-slash-badass, Sheridan also made some more out-of-the-box casting choices for this one. Tyler Perry is a surprise as the mysterious man behind the hit. Meanwhile, baby-faced duo Aidan Gillen and Nicholas Hoult are cast against type as the hitman pair – though it kind of makes sense. In real life, you would certainly never see them coming.

Release Info

Those Who Wish Me Dead was originally released on HBO Max in 2021, where it was streamed by 1.2 million households in its first three days.

Reviews have been mixed, but praise has been lavished on Sheridan's direction. Peter Debruge of Variety noted that Sheridan's 'scripts for Sicario and Hell or High Water have launched him to the front of a genre dominated by CG robots, superheroes and other IP once associated with Saturday morning cartoons… this one marks a welcome departure — one intended for grown-ups seeking more 'realistic' diversion — without shortchanging audiences when it comes to either spectacle or sound.'

Unfortunately for Those Who Wish Me Dead, its Netflix release was timed to coincide with two much bigger action franchises. The Equalizer and the John Wick series were released on Netflix on the same day as Sheridan's flick, taking a lot of eyes away from the less famous movie.

The Director

Oscar Nominee Taylor Sheridan isn't a household name yet – but he deserves to be. Originally an actor known for Sons of Anarchy and Veronica Mars, he has since earned award nods for his writing (Sicario; Hell or High Water) and increasing praise for his directing (Wind River).

On top of his work on the big screen, Taylor Sheridan co-created Yellowstone, a 'neo-Western' tv series that follows the family drama on Montana's largest ranch. An avid horseman, Sheridan was actually inducted into the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame in 2021.

Source: Variety.