After bursting onto the scene and winning an Academy Award for co-writing Good Will Hunting alongside longtime best friend Matt Damon while the two were still in their 20s, Ben Affleck quickly shot to the top of the Hollywood A-list, but over the next decade, a string of disappointing movies saw the actor much more likely to feature on the front pages of the tabloids than at the top of the box office.
With his star fading, Affleck decided to step behind the camera, leading to a massive career reinvention as a critically-acclaimed filmmaker that a lot of people never saw coming. His debut flick, Gone Baby Gone showed huge promise, but it was follow-up The Town that fully established him as a genuine talent with a bright future as a director.
The crime thriller was a major success, earning over $150 million at the box office and gaining widespread acclaim, and it still holds an impressive 93% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, with Jeremy Renner picking up his second consecutive Academy Award nomination in the process for his memorable supporting role. While Affleck himself wouldn’t experience awards season glory until his next movie Argo, The Town remains arguably his best work as a director and has now found itself gaining a second life on Netflix since being made available earlier this week.
The adaptation of Chuck Hogan’s novel Prince of Thieves currently sits in second place on the streaming service’s Top 10 most-watched movies list, and is the fifth most-viewed title overall. That isn’t a bad return for a largely-forgotten crime story that was first released a decade ago, especially when you consider the huge amount of new content that arrives on Netflix each month to compete for viewers’ attention.