Over the years, many actresses have expressed frustration about always having to play the "damsel in distress" while the actors got to don the cool costumes, grab the weapons or both, and save the day—and those damsels while they were at it. Groundbreakers like Sigourney Weaver in the Aliens franchise and Linda Hamilton in The Terminator (its sequel, in particular) paved the way for the likes of women like Anjelina Jolie and Alicia Vikander to bring game dame Lara Croft to life on the big screen. But during this "Summer of Gadot" (aka Wonder Woman), let us celebrate the many gorgeous gals kicking butt on a regular basis on the silver screen.
1. Kate Beckinsale The sexy Brit claimed her top spot as a hot ass-kicker in the Underworld series. She began playing the role of the ageless vampire and "lycan" huntress over 10 years ago, continuing to make them today while looking exactly the same—if not better (check out her Insta for pretty much daily proof). Lest you think Selene is the only toughie in her repertoire, might I remind you of her role in the under-appreciated Hugh Jackman film Van Helsing, too.
2. Charlize Theron We learned Theron was capable of transformation the minute we saw her in Monster, just a few months before nabbing an Oscar for that very role. But it wasn't until the Mad Max reboot that we learned she could add "action heroine" to her resume. Sure, there was Aeon Flux before that, but the CGI and poor box office results clouded our vision. We've since gotten her as the resident villain in the most recent The Fast and the Furious film and she's sure to launch a franchise with Atomic Blonde in a few short weeks.
3. Scarlett Johansson Where does one begin when it comes to ScarJo? Well, obviously The Black Widow, the Marvel superhero she played pitch-perfectly since first popping up all the way back in Iron Man 2. Fans have been begging for a stand-alone Widow flick ever since, but one does not seem to be coming their/our way. Like, ever. There's also Lucy and her 2017 franchise attempt, Ghost in the Shell, based on the uber popular manga series and animated feature film of the same name. Say what you will about both but ScarJo brought it on each occasion, particularly the latter... controversial casting aside. There should be a franchise.
4. Zoe Saldana While we're talking Marvel, surely this albeit short list should include the blazing hot Saldana, right? Not only is she an exquisite Gamora in the Guardians of the Galaxy series (and as such will show up in next year's next Avengers installment), but she is also holding it down as every Trekkie's fave Kirk conquest, Uhura. And we should definitely not leave out 2011's Colombiana, where a fair share of her fighting took place while in her underwear. Hey... is there no sequel pending there?
5. Evangeline Lilly So tough (and so sexy) in ABC's classic Lost, Lilly has chosen projects carefully ever since. Real Steel with Hugh Jackman (again, another Jackman film that is completely under-appreciated) saw her ringside and lovelorn, but able to get into that ring too (when need be) and kick the necessary butt. She will also finally don the Wasp costume when she reprises her Marvel role in next summer's Ant-Man and the Wasp. Look out, Rudd you stud!