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While Liam Neeson may have received top-billing and gotten his face on the poster, many would agree that Tantoo in The Ice Road was the one who really stole the show. The young, troubled sibling of a trapped miner (who also happens to be a devil behind the wheel of a semi truck) is just about the most badass character whom Amber Midthunder has played so far, despite a career already filled with thrillers of a relatively badass variety. If the 24-year-old, New Mexican-born actress’ performance in the Netflix original action flick had you wanting to see more of what she could do, the following are the essential titles to look for on streaming, starting with one of her earliest gigs.
Sunshine Cleaning (HBO Max)
Two mismatched adult sisters - one a single mother hoping to send her son to private school (Academy Award nominee Amy Adams) and the other an aimless, unreliable slacker (Golden Globe winner Emily Blunt) - team up to start a business specializing in crime scene cleanup and biohazard removal.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: Amber Midthunder was 11 years old when she starred as “Candy Store Girl” in 2008’s Sunshine Cleaning - a heartwarming indie comedy that deals with some otherwise harrowing subject matter, from the producers of Little Miss Sunshine - another dark, late 2000s indie comedy about dysfunctional families that also stars Alan Arkin.
Banshee (HBO Max)
A violent ex-con, fresh out of prison, assumes the identity of a man who was killed right before he could become the sheriff of a small town in Pennsylvania, where he uses his criminal instincts to protect the innocent.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In one of her first roles with an actual character name, Amber Midthunder appears as Lana Cleary - a young Native American girl who runs away with an Amish boy - in two episodes from the second season of the Cinemax original Banshee, a wild, gritty, deliciously over-the-top crime drama starring New Zealander Antony Starr from Amazon Prime’s The Boys cast letting out his inner anti-hero before before letting out his inner supervilllain as Homelander.
Walt Longmire, the widowed sheriff of Absaroka County in Wyoming, dukes out his own unorthodox and even menacing ways of fighting crime while struggling to come to grips with the death of his wife.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In one of her first roles from a Netflix original title, Amber Midthunder appears as Lilly Stilwater - first in the pilot as the victim of a missing child case and secondly in Season 3 as a pageant contestant - on Longmire, a darkly fun, Neo-western TV show starring Australian Robert Taylor as the 21st Century’s answer to Clint Eastwood’s “The Man with No Name.”
Hell Or High Water (Hulu)
A troubled, divorced man (Chris Pine) and his brother - a reckless, convicted criminal (Ben Foster) - attract the attention of a grizzled Texas Ranger (Jeff Bridges) and his partner (Gil Birmingham) when they team up to save their family farm the only the way they know how: robbing banks.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In one of her first highly acclaimed, Academy Award nominated films, Amber Midthunder plays a teller at a bank in Vernon, Texas who becomes a victim of the Howard Brothers’ crime spree in Hell or High Water - a thrilling, cleverly crafted Neo-western movie from writer Taylor Sheridan, starring Jeff Bridges as, essentially, the modern day version of his True Grit character, Rooster Cogburn.
14 Cameras (Tubi, IMDb TV, Vudu)
A family of five spend their summer vacation at a luxurious house in New Mexico, where it begins to become apparent that this paradise is not all that it seems.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In one of her first dips into horror movies, Amber Midthunder plays a young woman who becomes a victim of the dangerous voyeur Gerald (Neville Archambault) in 14 Cameras - the terrifying 2018 follow-up of 13 Cameras from three years earlier.
James (Christian music star Joel Smallbone), a widowed father of a daughter he has lost custody of, takes a job to drive a truck across the country with no questions out of desperation, only to be faced with a risky moral dilemma when he discovers that his cargo is a woman and her younger sister.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In one of her first starring roles in a feature-length film, Amber Midthunder plays a young girl who believes that she is traveling toward a better future, unaware of the harrowing reality that awaits her in Priceless - a heart wrenching, but uplifting, 2016 drama made horrifyingly relevant by its grounded theme of human trafficking.
Only Mine (Netflix)
A student and diner server (Amber Midthunder) strikes up a romance with a charming, older police officer (Brett Zimmerman) who soon begins to show sings that he is not all that he seems.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In one of her first feature-length films where she receives top billing, Amber Midthunder plays a young woman who, at first, becomes the victim of her obsessive and violent ex-lover, only to find the strength to be the hero of the story in Only Mine - a thriller with themes of abuse that are only made more horrifyingly relevant by the fact that it is loosely inspired by true events.
A disturbed man (Dan Stevens) who, at first, believes his childhood schizophrenia diagnosis is correct comes to realize that his strange experiences are really the result of mutant abilities he never knew he had.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In her first role as a regular cast member on a TV show, Amber Midthunder plays Kerry Loudermilk - a powerful mutant with pristine martial arts skills who shares a body with scientist Cary Loudermilk (Bill Irwin) - on the FX original series Legion, one of the most acclaimed and inventive Marvel TV shows of all time, that you will be surprised to learn exists in Fox’s X-Men movies universe.
Roswell, New Mexico (Netflix)
A group teenagers come to discover that aliens really are among them in their small New Mexico town, that was supposedly the site of a UFO crash.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In her latest role as a regular cast member on a TV show, Amber Midthunder plays Rosa Ortecho - an ordinary young woman resurrected from death by a man’s extra-terrestrial powers, who has unique abilities of her own - on the CW original series Roswell, New Mexico, a reboot of hit sci-fi show inspired by Melinda Metz’s series of young adult novels.
The Marksman (Epix)
When a young Mexican boy becomes the target of vicious cartel assassins, an aging Arizona rancher and former Marine sniper (Liam Neeson) takes the matter into his own hands.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In her first time working with Liam Neeson, Amber Midthunder plays a gas station attendant in The Marksman - a Clint Eastwood-style action thriller with some engrossing social commentary from the director of Trouble with the Curve, which, coincidentally, starred Clint Eastwood.
The Ice Road (Netflix)
When a group of diamond miners become trapped underground by an avalanche in northern Canada, an aging ice road trucker (Liam Neeson) is recruited for a rescue mission, but it soon becomes clear that the situation is not all that it seems.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Amber Midthunder: In her latest time working with Liam Neeson, Amber Midthunder plays a troubled young woman who is recruited to help rescue her brother from a dire situation in The Ice Road - one of the most satisfyingly over-the-top action movies on Netflix from the writer of such blockbusters as Armageddon and Die Hard with a Vengeance, to name a few.
Next on Amber Midthunder’s resume is a divorce drama from the director of Hot Tub Time Machine called The Wheel. Well, it appears that she is certainly the kind of actress who is also up to take on something new.
Jason has been writing since he was able to pick up a washable marker, with which he wrote his debut illustrated children's story, later transitioning to a short-lived comic book series and (very) amateur filmmaking before finally settling on pursuing a career in writing about movies in lieu of making them. Look for his name in just about any article related to Batman.
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