Of all the fascinating characters in the Yellowstone cast, one of the most badass and an easy shoe-in for the coolest of the bunch would have to be Rip Wheeler - an adoptive family member and trusted ranch hand of the Dutton Family played by Cole Hauser. In fact, I would go so far as to say that Rip (whom Hauser nearly didn't play) might be the coolest character the actor has ever played in his impressively versatile career.
In case any Yellowstone fans needed a refresher on the actor's prior roles, allow us to help. The following are our recommendations for Cole Hauser movies and TV shows to check out on streaming, starting with one of his first major breakout roles.
School Ties (Amazon Rental)
A promising young football quarterback (Brendan Fraser) is admitted into a prestigious, all-male preparatory high school where he finds acceptance, until he discovers that the men he calls his friends are anti-Semitic, forcing him to conceal his Jewish upbringing.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: Cole Hauser gives a hearty performance as Jack Connors - one of the surprising few who stick up for the central character in the face of cruel prejudice - in 1992’s School Ties, which is also one of the best Brendan Fraser movies and one of Ben Affleck and Matt Damon’s first onscreen collaborations.
Dazed And Confused (Amazon Rental)
A mismatched group of high school students (some who are just one summer away from senior year and some who just became freshmen) spend the night of their last day of school cruising around in search of a good time in 1976 Austin, Texas.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: Just a year after School Ties, Cole Hauser would reunite with Ben Affleck as co-stars in the Dazed and Confused cast, once again playing high school football players and giving one of the most fearsome performances of their respective careers as the bullish Benny and borderline sadistic O’Bannion.
Good Will Hunting (Peacock Premium)
A young, aimless janitor at M.I.T. (Matt Damon) reluctantly accepts seeing a therapist (Robin Williams, in an Oscar-winning performance) to help find some much needed direction in life upon the request of a professor (Stellan Skarsgård) who discovers his hidden mathematical talents.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: In 1997, Cole Hauser reunited with both Ben Affleck and Matt Damon to give a surprisingly heartfelt and memorable performance as their good friend, Billy McBride, in Good Will Hunting - director Gus Van Sant’s brilliant, inspiring coming-of-age classic that Affleck and Damon wrote to Academy Award-winning acclaim.
Higher Learning (Tubi)
A mismatched group of college students spend their freshman year at Columbia University trying to find direction in life, only to find a crash course in harsh truths about race, gender, and other triggering topics
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: In 1995, Cole Hauser gave, just about, the most chilling performance of his career as a young skinhead who passes his hateful ideologies onto a persuadable loner (Michael Rappaport) in Higher Learning - writer and director John Singleton’s intense, thought-provoking coming-of-age classic, also starring Laurence Fishburne giving an Oscar-worthy performance as an idealistic political science professor.
Pitch Black (Amazon Rental)
After suffering a crash landing on a deserted planet, the crew of a prison transport ship must join forces with a dangerous convict (Vin Diesel) to defend themselves against a swarm of nocturnal beings during an extensive eclipse.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: At the turn of the century, Cole Hauser would graduate from coming-of-age dramas to receive his first taste of action star status as mercenary and bounty hunter William J. Johns in Pitch Black - one of the most fun and thrilling sci-fi/action hybrids of its time and the first film to introduce Vin Diesel in the (possibly soon to be continued) role of Richard B. Riddick.
Tears Of The Sun (Netflix)
A Navy SEAL lieutenant (Bruce Willis) and his team are sent into the Nigerian jungle to rescue a doctor (Monica Bellucci), but she only agrees to leave with them if they agree to help save 70 refugees.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: Cole Hauser would continue to earn his keep as one of his generation’s best action stars in the role of James “Red” Atkins in director Antoine Fuqua’s Tears of the Sun - one of the best war movies of the actor’s career and his second time starring in a combat epic opposite Bruce Willis, after 2002’s Hart’s War.
Olympus Has Fallen (Netflix)
A disgraced former Secret Service agent (Gerard Butler) becomes the only hope for saving the life of the President (Aaron Eckhart) when he becomes trapped inside the White House in the midst of a devastating terrorist attack.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: Cole Hauser would reunite with director Antoine Fuqua and his Pitch Black co-star Radha Mitchell for a smaller, but pivotal, role as Secret Service agent Roma in Olympus Has Fallen, which is arguably the better of the two White House invasion thrillers released in 2013 for its comparatively more believable plot line and Gerard Butler’s gripping redemption arc.
Paparazzi (Amazon Rental)
A rising Hollywood actor (Cole Hauser) has his first real taste of fame tainted by the intrusion of ruthless tabloid photographers, whom he vows to take personal revenge against after nearly causing him a tragic loss.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: For his first leading role in an action movie, Cole Hauser gives a striking performance in 2004’s Paparazzi that I cannot help but imagine was fueled by some amount of wish-fulfillment, having likely experienced similar circumstances as his character.
The Break-Up (Peacock Premium)
Feeling neglected by her tourism guide boyfriend (Vince Vaughn), an art dealer (Jennifer Aniston) decides to call it quits in the hope that he will come to his senses, until the question of who gets to keep the luxurious condo they purchased together only worsens the conflict.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: Vince Vaughn actually made an uncredited cameo in Paparazzi as himself opposite Cole Hauser two years before they played brothers and business partners in The Break-Up, which I would refer to as one of the best romantic comedies of its time, if not for the fact that it is, sort of, the antithesis of the genre’s specialties… which I mean in a good way.
The Lizzie Borden Chronicles (Amazon Purchase)
Four months after she is controversially acquitted of the double murder of her stepmother and father, Lizzie Borden (Christina Ricci) and her sister, Emma (Clea DuVall), struggle to move on with their lives amid financial issues due to her tarnished reputation, in 1893 Massachusetts.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: In 2015, Cole Hauser gave a flattering portrayal of real-life detective Charlie Siringo in Lifetime’s otherwise fictionalized account of the aftermath of the infamous trial in The Lizzie Borden Chronicles - an eight-episode follow-up to the network’s 2014 film, Lizzie Borden Took an Ax.
Rogue (Amazon Prime)
An undercover detective (Thandiwe Newton) tries to get to the truth behind her son’s untimely death, which she believes she may be the true cause of.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: In one of his first major starring roles on a TV series before Yellowstone, Cole Hauser is riveting as an ex-soldier turned criminal on Rogue - a tense crime procedural that originally aired on DirecTV’s Audience Network and also starred future Emmy winner and fellow Riddick movies star Thandiwe Newton.
The Last Champion (Pluto TV)
After the devastating death of his mother, a disgraced former Olympic wrestling champion (Cole Hauser) returns to his hometown, where he is not met with a particularly warm welcome, but gets a chance to prove his worth when he becomes the new coach for the local school’s wrestling team.
Why it’s worth checking out if you like Cole Hauser: In 2020, Cole Hauser gave one of the more heartwarming performances of his career as the lead of The Last Champion - a simple sports movie from director John Withrow elevated by its inspiring redemption arc and Hauser's uplifting commitment to the portrayal.
Outside of getting fans pumped for Yellowstone Season 5, Cole Hauser has a few motion pictures on the way, too. He will play the lead of a new action film called Panama, along with his Paparazzi producer Mel Gibson, and will star opposite Academy Award winner Morgan Freeman in the bizarre crime thriller, Muti. He is also headlining Yolo County O.G. - a biopic about a former fire captain turned cannabis entrepreneur.
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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