Action The Best CGI Action Movies  

Ranker Film
292 votes 30 voters 28 items

List Rules Vote up the movies that had the best CGI action moments.

In 1973, the movie Westworld became the first film to ever use computer-generated imagery. The science fiction western was a box office flop, but it paved the way to create the best CGI moments in action movies. Today, there is almost nothing that a filmmaker cannot do thanks in large part to CGI. Here are the best CGI effects in action films.

The Wachowskis impressed the movie world in 1993's The Matrix by showing off their new technology called bullet time during a scene where Neo (Keanu Reeves) is able to dodge an onslaught of bullets by bending backward. The visual effect makes it appear as if Neo’s body is in slow motion while the bullets race by him. The CGI in that scene may look tame by today’s standards, but the technology forever changed the way that computers could be used for realistic looking special effects in cinema.

The bullet time sequence in The Matrix is just one of the best CGI scenes in action movies. What other action movies made the list, and which ones do you think display the best use of computer-generated imagery? Cast your votes below.

list ordered by
1
13 2
Terminator 2: Judgment Day is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Edward Furlong, Linda Hamilton
Terminator 2: Judgment Day is a 1991 American science fiction action thriller film written, produced and directed by James Cameron. The film stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, Linda Hamilton, Robert ...more
2
14 3
Avatar is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Zoe Saldana, Sigourney Weaver, Michelle Rodriguez
Avatar is a 2009 American epic science fiction film written and directed by James Cameron, and starring Sam Worthington, Zoe Saldana, Stephen Lang, Michelle Rodriguez, Joel David Moore, Giovanni ...more
3
9 1
Inception is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard
Inception is a 2010 science fiction thriller film written, produced, and directed by Christopher Nolan. The film stars a large ensemble cast that includes Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page, Joseph ...more
4
9 2
Kong: Skull Island is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, John Goodman
Kong: Skull Island is a 2017 American monster film directed by Jordan Vogt-Roberts. The film is a reboot of the King Kong franchise and will serve as the second film in Legendary's Godzilla–Kong ...more
5
9 2
The Perfect Storm is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
George Clooney, Mark Wahlberg, Diane Lane
The Perfect Storm is a 2000 American biographical disaster drama film directed by Wolfgang Petersen. It is an adaptation of the 1997 non-fiction book of the same title by Sebastian Junger, which ...more
6
10 3
Tron is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Jeff Bridges, David Warner, Michael Dudikoff
Tron is a 1982 American science fiction film written and directed by Steven Lisberger, based on a story by Lisberger and Bonnie MacBird, and produced by Walt Disney Productions. The film stars ...more
7
10 3
The Avengers is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo
Marvel's The Avengers is a 2012 American superhero film directed by Joss Whedon, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team. Earth's mightiest heroes must come together and learn to fight as a ...more
8
10 3
The Matrix is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Keanu Reeves, Hugo Weaving, Carrie-Anne Moss
The Matrix is a 1999 American-Australian science fiction action film written and directed by The Wachowskis, starring Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, Carrie-Anne Moss, Hugo Weaving, and Joe ...more
9
12 5
Guardians of the Galaxy is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista
Guardians of the Galaxy is a 2014 American superhero film directed by James Gunn, based on the Marvel Comics superhero team. Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) forms a group of intergalactic "bad ...more
10
9 3
Thor: Ragnarok is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Chris Hemsworth, Tom Hiddleston, Cate Blanchett
Thor: Ragnarok is a 2017 American superhero film directed by Taika Waititi. Four years after the events of Thor: The Dark World, Thor (Chris Hemsworth) must win a gladiatorial duel against an ...more
11
9 5
Transformers is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Megan Fox, Shia LaBeouf, Odette Annable
Transformers is a 2007 American science fiction action film directed by Michael Bay, based on the toy line. An ancient struggle between two Cybertronian races, the heroic Autobots and the evil ...more
12
8 4
Iron Man is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Robert Downey Jr., Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges
Iron Man is a 2008 American superhero film directed by Jon Favreau, based on the Marvel Comics character. After being held captive in an Afghan cave, billionaire engineer Tony Stark (Robert ...more
13
7 3
Avengers: Infinity War is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo
Avengers: Infinity War is a 2018 American superhero film directed by Anthony and Joe Russo. Torn apart after the events of Captain America: Civil War, the Avengers join forces with the Guardians ...more
14
8 5
Iron Man 3 is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Gwyneth Paltrow, Robert Downey Jr., Ben Kingsley
Iron Man 3 is a 2013 superhero film featuring the Marvel Comics character Iron Man, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to 2008's ...more
15
6 3
Kingsman: The Secret Service is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Lady Gaga, David Beckham, Elton John
Based upon the acclaimed comic book and directed by Matthew Vaughn, Kingsman: The Secret Service tells the story of a super-secret spy organization that recruits an unrefined but promising ...more
16
5 2
The Fast and the Furious is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Jordana Brewster
The Fast and the Furious is a 2001 American street racing action film directed by Rob Cohen and starring Vin Diesel, Paul Walker, Michelle Rodriguez and Jordana Brewster. The film is the first ...more
17
5 3
The Day After Tomorrow is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Emmy Rossum, Jake Gyllenhaal, Dennis Quaid
The Day After Tomorrow is a 2004 American climate fiction-disaster film co-written, directed, and produced by Roland Emmerich and starring Dennis Quaid, Jake Gyllenhaal, Ian Holm, Emmy Rossum, ...more
18
5 3
Star Trek is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Zoe Saldana, Jennifer Morrison, Winona Ryder
Star Trek is a 2009 science fiction film directed by J. J. Abrams, written by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, and produced by Damon Lindelof and Bryan Burk. It is the eleventh film based on the ...more
19
5 4
Edge of Tomorrow is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt, Bill Paxton
Edge of Tomorrow is a 2014 American military science fiction thriller film starring Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt. Doug Liman directed the film. The film takes place in a future where Earth is ...more
20
5 4
Rampage is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Dwayne Johnson, Naomie Harris, Malin Åkerman
Rampage is a 2018 American action adventure monster film directed by Brad Peyton, loosely based on the video game series. When three animals are mutated into giant monsters, primatologist Davis ...more
21
4 4
The Mummy is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Rachel Weisz, Brendan Fraser, Patricia Velásquez
The Mummy is a 1999 American fantasy adventure film written and directed by Stephen Sommers and starring Brendan Fraser, Rachel Weisz, John Hannah, and Kevin J. O'Connor, with Arnold Vosloo in ...more
22
4 4
War for the Planet of the Apes is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Andy Serkis, Woody Harrelson, Steve Zahn
This film is a 2017 science fiction film directed by Matt Reeves. Following the events of Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014), Caesar (Andy Serkis) and the apes are embroiled in a conflict ...more
23
3 3
District 9 is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Sharlto Copley, Jed Brophy, Vanessa Haywood
District 9 is a 2009 science fiction film directed by Neill Blomkamp, released August 13, 2009. It takes place in Johannesburg, South Africa. District 9 is based on Alive in Joburg, a short film ...more
24
2 2
Kick-Ass is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Nicolas Cage, Chloë Grace Moretz, Lyndsy Fonseca
Kick-Ass is a 2010 British-American superhero action comedy film based on the comic book of the same name by Mark Millar and John Romita, Jr. The film was directed by Matthew Vaughn, who ...more
25
6 7
Captain Marvel is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best CGI Action Movies
Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Mendelsohn
Captain Marvel is a 2019 American superhero film directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, based on the Marvel Comics character. In 1995, former U.S. Air Force fighter pilot Carol Danvers (Brie ...more