Michael Bay's '6 Underground' Netflix trailer is a video game come to life

Ryan Reynolds leads an ensemble action movie that feels like pure Bayhem.

One of the biggest, most Michael Bay-est movies of 2019 is coming to your tiny six-inch smartphone screen this December. On Tuesday, Netflix released the trailer for 6 Underground, a new action-thriller directed by Michael Bay that will begin streaming on Netflix on December 13. Ryan Reynolds leads an ensemble cast that includes Mélanie Laurent, Adria Arjona (Good Omens), Corey Hawkins, Ben Hardy, and Manuel Garcia-Rulfo. In short: It looks TKTKTK.

6 Underground is about a group of individuals who fake their deaths to form an international vigilante squad. So, imagine if Bruce Wayne got his buddies to join him as Batman. But instead of cowls and spandex, they all had guns and masks from Payday 2. That’s 6 Underground, and it’s streaming just in time for the holidays.

Written by Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese (Deadpool), the movie is pretty much Bay in his purest form. A group of insanely attractive one-percenters who play cowboy in exotic locales (or sets that cost a bazillion dollars) while dodging bullets and explosions is exactly what you get when Netflix gives the director of Transformers and Pain & Gain a blank check and creative freedom.

The trailer itself is so littered with Bay’s signature “Bayhem” that I half-expect YouTuber Tony Zhou to come out of retirement and update his still excellent Michael Bay essay to feature 6 Underground.

The film indeed is an original idea, but the aesthetics of the masks Reynolds’ crew wears bears some strong similarities to the masks seen worn by characters in the Payday shooter games. For those who aren’t familiar, Payday is a franchise of co-operative multiplayer shooters in which players work together to pull off dangerous heists or other illegal activities as a group. The first game was 2011’s Payday: The Heist, and was followed by a sequel, Payday 2 in 2013.

It’s a franchise ripe for adaptation, especially one helmed by Bay. But as the rights to the games rests with Swedish company Starbreeze Studios, that leaves Bay to direct a movie that looks just like it if you squint hard enough.

Update: An earlier version of this article said that the characters were billionaires. They are specialists.


6 Underground will begin steaming on Netflix on December 13.