Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Best Free Adventure Movies You Can Watch On YouTube Right Now

We all long for adventure — the salty sea breeze in our hair, the sun creeping up over the unexplored horizon, the promise of the unknown that lies just over the next mountain's peak. There's just one problem: Couches are like, wildly comfortable. It's like they're designed to be nice to sit on or something. "Adventure can wait," we each tell ourselves after a long day at work. "My dogs are barking."

Thankfully, there's a healthy middle ground between living the life of a Quatermain and slowly melting into the in-between bits of a sofa — namely, adventure films, sagas that we can experience vicariously from the comfort of our living rooms. What's more, YouTube has a panoply of flicks available to watch for free, many dripping with all the uncharted continents and calls to epic action you could hope for and are ready to watch on the internet-connected device of your choosing. Here's a quick look at some of the best that the streaming service has to offer.

Highlander 2: The Renegade Version

In the original "Highlander" movie, audiences learned that there could be only one. It's one of several inaccuracies throughout the picture — for example, did you know that Clancy Brown won't actually die if you cut his head off?

In any case, there turned out to be significantly more than one Highlander. The story of immortals locked in a seemingly endless battle to see who could decapitate all of their work friends, and was too good to stop at just one entry, as the MacLeod family legacy continued on through cartoons, television, and half a dozen or so sequels. The cartoon? Flawless. The TV show? It went for over 100 episodes. The sequels? Generally built on shaky ground, starting with "Highlander 2: The Quickening," which holds an impressive 0% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes even after 30 years.

But like an immortal who only got their head cut most of the way off, "Highlander 2" clings to life thanks to the early days of awesome special edition director's cuts. 1995's "Renegade Version" of the film ditches the aliens and reconfigures the stakes of the original, transforming this iconic cinematic series of unfortunate mistakes into something, you know, not bad.

The Hunter

Maybe you've never wanted to watch Willem Dafoe try to kill a tasmanian tiger. Maybe you lost your childlike sense of wonder at a Nordstrom back in 1996. But for everyone else, "The Hunter" is a psychological blunderbuss shot of globetrotting thrills.

Released to critical acclaim and a baker's dozen Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Award nominations, "The Hunter" tells the story of a man tasked with hunting down what's believed to be the last of a recently wiped-out species of marsupial. He's told to nab some samples of the critter, then trash any other members of the species so that nobody else can get their hands on them. Why would he be asked to do this? Finding out is half the battle, but corporate intrigue comes into play in a way that you don't normally see in movies about the collection of extinct animal DNA, "Jurassic Park" notwithstanding.

As if that wasn't enough, "The Hunter" features Sam Neill in a wide brimmed hat, which more or less guarantees at least 90 minutes of adventure.

Hunt for the Wilderpeople

The general consensus in Hollywood is that nobody knows what will and won't work. Or it was, until Taika Waititi started making movies. Now the consensus is that nobody knows what will and won't work, aside from hiring Taika Waititi, who makes everything work, even stories about imaginary Hitlers getting into nonsense.

Before "Jojo Rabbit" and "Thor Ragnarok," Waititi wrote and directed "Hunt for the Wilderpeople," an adaptation of the Barry Crump novel "Wild Pork" and "Watercress." Here, we meet Ricky Baker (Julian Dennison of "Deadpool 2" fame), an abandoned and troubled youth taken in by a foster family. A few emotional gut punches later, he finds himself seamlessly faking his own suicide and escaping into the wilderness of New Zealand. Like a lot of Waititi's work, "Hunt for the Wilderpeople" keeps you distracted with hilarious visuals just before gut punching you with heartbreaking reality — 10 out of 10 stars.

As if that wasn't enough, "Hunt for the Wilderpeople" also features Sam Neil in a wide brimmed hat once again, which more or less guarantees 90 minutes of adventure.

Grizzly Man

Whether he's kicking off a vampire movie with footage of mummified children or trying to add Baby Yoda to the opening shots of his next vampire movie, Werner Herzog knows how to evoke an emotional reaction.

To that end, the German filmmaker hit the jackpot when he came across the story of Timothy Treadwell, an amateur documentarian and wildlife enthusiast with an abiding obsession with bears. Herzog uses Treadwell's own footage to construct a patchwork interpretation of his life (and inevitable death) among apex predators four times his size.

That Treadwell's story ends in tragedy is a given from the beginning — in the first shot of "Grizzly Man," he's introduced with his date of death superimposed underneath him as he describes what bears might do to him if he makes a wrong move. Whether you're starry-eyed over the subject's adoration for the wild or horrified by his apparent lack of insight, "Grizzly Man" paints a vivid portrait of a singular human life and the large animals that swallowed it.


In the years following the success of History's wildly popular 2013 historical drama "Vikings," it's been hard to find a good story about Scandinavians traveling somewhere by boat that doesn't end in bloody death and an omnipresent layer of viscera and mud.

And so we turn to 2012, just before Ragnar et al started getting up to no good, and the feel-good adventure story "Kon-Tiki." This Norwegian production relays the semi-fictionalized tale of Thor Heyerdahl, a real-life researcher with a wild hypothesis that Polynesia was settled by Peruvian natives who sailed to the islands all by themselves. "There's no way they could've pulled that off," the scientific community protested. "Yes huh they could," Heyerdahl conjectured, and putting his money where his mouth was, he set off on a journey of "yes huh they could," building a ship based on 1,500-year-old designs.

The historical accuracy of the movie is, predictably, a little sketchy, but "Kon-Tiki" is a beautifully produced film with bright-eyed curiosity and perilous acts of derring-do all the way down to its core.