I’m just going to go ahead and say what we’re all thinking: Movies based on video games are usually bad. There are a couple good ones, but most of them are bad. Especially if directed by Uwe Boll. Sorry not sorry, dude.
So, here we go. Below, behold 15 of the worst movies based on video games from the past 30 or so years, ranked from terrible to awful. In other words, they’re all so bad that I can’t even put them in a specific order.
15. Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (1997)
Tomatometer score: 2%
Let’s start things off with the most insulting video game movie ever made: Mortal Kombat: Annihilation. This film was meant to be a stellar sequel to 1995’s very successful Mortal Kombat, but it fell flat on its face. Hard. I’m not sure if it was the dreadful special effects, embarrassing costumes, or the catastrophic acting, but what I do know is that this is the worst video game movie in existence.
I’d actually say this movie is almost so bad that it’s good, but only almost.
Sebastian Zavala Kahn of Más Gamers writes: “It’s hard to believe that it was produced by big studios in Hollywood, since it’s one of the worst films ever made.”
14. Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li (2009)
Tomatometer score: 5%
Another sad and sloppy attempt to bring the iconic franchise to the silver screen, Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li is basically a massive waste of time. The fact that Taboo from the Black Eyed Peas plays Vega should tell you everything you need to know.
What exactly is wrong with it? According to yours truly, it’s pathetically miscast, the storyline is bland and fuzzy, the action sequences are just unforgivably disappointing, and the dialogue is so poorly written that I’m seriously wondering if the screenwriters were joking.
John P. McCarthy of Boxoffice Magazine says: “Devoid of a single redeeming feature, the motley flick is a hodge-podge of chop-socky cliches — a ball of flaming, stinky martial arts chi.”
13. Assassin’s Creed (2016)
Tomatometer score: 18%
Listen, this movie had a lot of potential. For starters, the cast is great with Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard as the main characters. They also clearly had a massive budget for this major blockbuster. However, all that potential was wasted when the final product culminated in a lackluster plot that had more holes than a block of Swiss cheese, and an unremarkable script.
Nicholas Barber of BBC says: “There’s a treat in store for anyone who takes a perverse pleasure in seeing truly terrible films, because Hollywood’s latest video-game adaptation, Assassin’s Creed, is a Christmas turkey with all the trimmings.”
12. Max Payne (2008)
Tomatometer score: 16%
This movie was downright payneful. Ha ha.
I won’t attack the visuals or action scenes in this because they were admittedly stylish, but the plot and script suck. Considering how captivating the game is, this movie is a sharp insult to the franchise. There’s just no substance to it. I don’t know how else to explain it.
Orlando Parfitt from IGN Movies UK says: “A massive waste of time and a glaring missed opportunity.”
11. Silent Hill: Revelation (2012)
Tomatometer score: 10%
If you want to watch a good movie, this isn’t it. It’s just a trashy horror film with trash CGI and a trash plot that doesn’t make sense. Moreover, the characters have no chemistry together and the acting is so. fucking. bad.
You miiight think this movie is okay if you’re someone who has a very open mind, enjoys different perspectives on the Silent Hill universe from the video game, and doesn’t mind bad acting. But otherwise it’s complete garbage.
Keith Staskiewicz from Entertainment Weekly sums it up nicely: “An ugly, assaultive collection of jump-scares.”
10. Resident Evil: Apocalypse (2004)
Tomatometer score: 20%
While I love Milla Jovovich, I don’t love this movie of hers. It’s sorely underwhelming with way too much shooting and far too many generic characters. It’s literally a cheesy zombie movie.
Randy Cordova of Arizona Republic says: “Resident Evil: Apocalypse accomplishes the odd feat of having several things going on at once yet never being terribly exciting.”
9. Hitman (2007)
Tomatometer score: 15%
Some love this movie, some hate it. Objectively, it’s a very thinly written film with a weak and predictable storyline. On the other hand, it’s not too awful when you stop thinking about it and just watch it with your brain turned off.
Charlotte O’Sullivan of the London Evening Standard says: “The film’s target audience – dummies everywhere – will be blown away.”
8. Alone in the Dark (2005)
Tomatometer score: 1%
It goes without saying that anything with a 1% rating on Rotten Tomatoes is going to be painfully bad. But if you’re like me, you have to watch it to see for yourself if it really does deserve the status of being one of the worst movies ever made.
After attempting to watch it and making it less than halfway through, I can safely say that it definitely deserves the hate. This is one botched video game adaptation that’s awful on every level. Uwe Boll sucks, guys. Why is Hollywood still giving him work??
Sebastian Zavala of Kahn of Más Gamers writes: “Don’t watch Alone in the Dark. Not even as a joke. It’s eighty minutes that absolutely no one can give you back.”
7. Wing Commander (1999)
Tomatometer score: 10%
Ah, yes. Another low-budget video game adaptation. This movie is like a lame sci-fi movie you’d find on a weird channel on TV around noon when you’re sick at home and there’s nothing better to watch. You promptly fall asleep, wake up 45 minutes later, and have no desire to catch up because it’s a generic space movie.
Lisa Alspector of the Chicago Reader says: “Excruciatingly earnest yet convictionless.”
6. In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale (2006)
Tomatometer score: 4%
Someone wrote in the comments of the trailer on YouTube: “If Lord of the Rings had a handicap brother it would be this,” and it’s the only accurate description of this movie out there and tells you everything you need to know. I don’t need to say anything else.
Jim Lane of the Sacramento News & Review says: “…like a Florida dinner theater production of The Lord of the Rings…”
5. Bloodrayne (2006)
Tomatometer score: 4%
Yet another abomination from Uwe Boll that makes you wonder how he was hired to direct all of these movies. Bloodrayn is a goddamn mess and that’s all I have to say on the matter.
Roger Moore of the Orlando Sentinel says: “Who is Uwe Boll and why does he hate moviegoers so? The German hack, the one-man Blitzkrieg of Bad, is the worst filmmaker in the movies today.”
4. Street Fighter (1994)
Tomatometer score: 10%
Perhaps the most ironic video game adaptations ever made, Street Fighter‘s only redeeming quality is Raul Julia. Other than that, it’s just an overstuffed, over-the-top mess of martial arts and bad acting.
It’s also funny as hell, so there’s that.
Betsy Sherman of the Boston Globe says: “A raucous two-fisted fantasy that is good bonehead fun before it completely falls apart during the lengthy final battle sequence.”
3. Doom (2005)
Tomatometer score: 19%
Fans of the game and everyone else in the audience will be understandably annoyed by the underwhelming performances from The Rock and Rosamund Pike and bland storyline that has nothing to do with the game. The first half of the movie is especially boring, and you’ll definitely feel upset with yourself for wasting two hours of your life on this cliché-ridden Hollywood fuckup.
Felix Vasquez Jr. of Cinema Crazed says: “A bland lifeless piece of science fiction fodder that really doesn’t pay homage to the game.”
2. Postal (2007)
Tomatometer score: 9%
Another shitty video game movie from Uwe Boll? You better believe it! Postal is such a what-the-fuck-worthy movie that you can’t help but laugh at how ridiculous it is. It’s a black comedy that tries to be stupid and offensive but misses the mark completely — which actually takes talent to pull off.
David Nusair of Reel Film Reviews says: “The end result is a film that feels as though it’s been conceived and executed by a third grader.”
1. Lara Croft – Tomb Raider (2001)
Tomatometer score: 21%
It is a FACT that Angelina Jolie is the perfect Lara Croft. But when it comes to the movie itself, you’ll find yourself thinking “Wait…what’s the plot again? Why is she here?” It’s a hot mess that’s just a little too chaotic.
Jonathan Rosenbaum of the Chicago Reader says: “A movie based on a video game that’s unafraid to look absurd but lacks the self-conviction needed to come off as camp.”