All of Will Smith's movies, ranked
"The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" star Will Smith has appeared in a variety of movies.
Smith's best films include newer ones like "Dads" (2019) and "King Richard" (2021).
But movies like "Collateral Beauty" (2016) and "After Earth" (2013) were panned by critics.
Smith had a small cameo in "Student of the Year 2" (2019).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 6%
Summary: After following his crush to a new college, Rohan Sachdev (Tiger Shroff) tries to impress her by winning the "Student of the Year" cup.
The sequel, which was released seven years after the original, was a major letdown for critics.
In a review for The National, Kumar Shyam wrote that "the script and the climax make it an overall dud."
He played Cypher Raige in "After Earth" (2013).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 11%
Summary: In the distant future, general Cypher Raige (Smith) explores a ravaged Earth with his son Kitai (Jaden Smith) at his side.
"After Earth" was a flop for critics, who largely found it heavy-handed and painfully long.
Critic Larushka Ivan-Zadeh called it "preachy" and "draggingly directed by M. Night Shyamalan."
In "Winter's Tale" (2014), he played the Judge.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 13%
Summary: Based on the novel by Mark Helprin, "Winter's Tale" centers on Peter Lake (Colin Farrell), a thief who sets out to save heiress Beverly Penn (Jessica Brown Findlay) from the brink of death.
Smith appeared as Lucifer.
Critics said "Winter's Tale" failed to capture the magic of the original novel.
"'Winter's Tale' feels distant and disconnected," Nathalia Aryani wrote for the MovieMaven. "It should have been magical."
Smith starred as Howard in "Collateral Beauty" (2016).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 14%
Summary: While reeling from the loss of his young daughter, Howard Inlet (Smith) writes letters to the concepts of love, time, and death as a therapeutic exercise and is stunned when they seemingly answer his response.
Despite being packed with a star-studded ensemble cast, "Collateral Beauty" struck the wrong chord with critics.
"'Collateral Beauty' packs an impressive amount of failure into a film that barely crosses the 95-minute mark," Steve Prokopy wrote for Third Coast Review.
He was James West in "Wild Wild West" (1999).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 17%
Summary: This steampunk Western follows Secret Service agents James West (Smith) and Artemus Gordon (Kevin Kline) as they set out to protect the president from assassination.
Critics said the producers of "Wild Wild West" should've invested in a better script instead of doubling down on outdated CGI.
"The movie is exhausting, utterly without feeling, and pointless — though Smith looks great in his Western outfit," Terrence Rafferty wrote for The New Yorker.
Smith returned as detective Mike Lowrey in "Bad Boys II" (2003).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 24%
Summary: A drug investigation takes a dramatic turn for Mike Lowrey (Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) when Marcus' sister Syd (Gabrielle Union) is taken as a hostage.
Critics called "Bad Boys II" an overblown and overstuffed action film that lacked the punch of its predecessor.
"The movie is one big raging pile of macho steam-blowing," Jeffrey Chen wrote for Window to the Movies. "Maybe the participants got something out of their systems, but the result just feels like hot air."
Smith played Henry Brogan and Junior in "Gemini Man" (2019).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 26%
Summary: As soon as he quits his career as a hit man, Henry Brogan (Smith) is suddenly targeted by a young operative that looks shockingly familiar.
Some critics had fun with the visuals and lead performance from Smith, but most couldn't get on board with the subpar plot.
"The technology of 'Gemini Man' may be amazing, but the narrative is anything but," Roxana Hadadi wrote in a review for Chesapeake Family Magazine.
In "Suicide Squad" (2016), he was Deadshot.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 26%
Summary: Intelligence officer Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) uses a group of Gotham villains to her advantage when she sends the Joker (Jared Leto), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), Deadshot (Smith), and more on a mission they can't refuse.
Despite some stellar casting choices, "Suicide Squad" failed to keep critics engaged.
"It's baffling that this movie struggled with its storyline to such a distressing degree," Mike Massie reviewed for Gone With the Twins.
He played Daryl Ward in "Bright" (2017).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 27%
Summary: In a fantasy world where humans and mythical creatures live side by side, Daryl Ward (Smith) and his new orc partner Nick Jakoby (Joel Edgerton) reluctantly pair up to solve a string of crimes in their city.
Critics said "Bright" had its fingers in too many pots by trying to be a convincing fantasy film, comedy, and social drama.
"'Bright' is basically a tired buddy-cop movie dressed up in bizarre trappings," Richard Roeper wrote for the Chicago Sun-Times.
The actor was Ben Thomas in "Seven Pounds" (2008).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 27%
Summary: IRS agent Ben Thomas (Smith) struggles with a terrible secret and hopes to redeem himself by changing the lives of seven deserving strangers.
The drama left critics feeling disconnected and disturbed, especially by the film's ending.
"'Seven Pounds' is a profoundly irritating mystery about a profoundly silly man," James Christopher wrote for The Times.
In "Made in America" (1993), he had a small role as Tea Cake Walters.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 31%
Summary: Zora (Nia Long) confronts her mother (Whoopi Goldberg) when she realizes that her absent father is a loud-mouthed sperm-bank donor named Hal Jackson (Ted Danson).
"Made in America" earned minor praise for its laughs and charming cast, but overall, critics felt like the comedy was less than a sum of its parts.
"This first-time screenplay by Holly Goldberg Sloan feels more like an outline, and director Richard Benjamin doesn't seem to know quite what to do with it," Chris Hicks wrote for Deseret News.
He voiced Oscar in the animated movie "Shark Tale" (2004).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 36%
Summary: A fish named Oscar (voiced by Smith) winds up in huge trouble when he spreads a lie about taking down a great white shark.
Some critics saw "Shark Tale" as a fun, light-hearted romp, but it failed to measure up to other DreamWorks classics like "Shrek" (2001) and "Chicken Run" (2000).
In a review for the List, James Mottram called it "an adequate time-killer that benefits from an impressive voice cast."
Smith returned as Agent J in "Men in Black II" (2002).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 39%
Summary: When Agent J (Smith) goes up against a Kylothian monster (Lara Flynn Boyle), he reluctantly calls on his old partner Agent K (Tommy Lee Jones) for help.
Critics largely agreed that "Men in Black II" failed to break new ground or bring big laughs.
In a review for Solzy at the Movies, Danielle Solzman wrote that the film "unfortunately suffers at the core as the sequel just doesn't quite have the same magic as its predecessor."
He was John Hancock in the action-comedy "Hancock" (2008).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 41%
Summary: John Hancock (Smith) is an unconventional superhero with a lack of direction until a PR agent (Jason Bateman) offers to clean up his public image.
According to critics, "Hancock" earned praise for its bold premise but seemed to fall apart as it reached its climax.
"I wanted to like 'Hancock,' especially after its rather enjoyable beginning, but ultimately the film is nothing more than a disappointing case of what-could-have-been," Micheal Compton reviewed for Bowling Green Daily News.
Smith first played Mike Lowrey in "Bad Boys" (1995).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 42%
Summary: With their jobs on the line, Miami detectives Mike Lowrey (Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Lawrence) are given five days to track down $100 million in confiscated drugs.
Critics said "Bad Boys" didn't offer too much in terms of a compelling story, but for some, it skated by on Smith and Lawrence's charm.
"The plot and characterisation are largely irrelevant — just sit back and feast on the adrenaline-pumping action and the live-wire banter of the two stars," John Ferguson reviewed for Radio Times.
The actor appeared as himself in "Jersey Girl" (2004).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 42%
Summary: Single dad Ollie Trinke (Ben Affleck) laments the life he lived when he was a big-shot music producer until a sweet book editor (Liv Tyler) helps him realize there's more to life than work.
Smith made a cameo in the film as himself.
Sweet and sentimental to a fault, "Jersey Girl" failed to completely win over film critics.
"... its heart is in the right place," Kimberley Jones wrote for the Austin Chronicle. "Unfortunately, that heart is about the only element here that doesn't strain credibility."
In "The Legend of Bagger Vance" (2000), he played the titular lead.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 43%
Summary: Based on the novel by Steven Pressfield, this drama follows down-on-his-luck golfer Rannulph Junuh (Matt Damon), whose life changes for the better when he meets Bagger Vance (Smith).
The adaptation left something to be desired for a majority of critics, but many still enjoyed Damon and Smith's lead performances.
In a review for Newsweek, David Ansen wrote that "the real sparks are between Damon and the mischievously enigmatic Smith."
He was Nicky in "Focus" (2015).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 56%
Summary: After years apart, a con artist (Smith) is thrown off his game when his apprentice (Robbie) resurfaces in the middle of his latest scheme.
Gorgeous settings and charming lead actors couldn't save "Focus" from uneven reviews.
"Simultaneously nonsensical yet fun to watch, with a little more focus 'Focus' could have been the blockbuster that Smith desperately needs it to be," Richard Propes wrote for The Independent Critic.
Smith played detective Del Spooner in "I, Robot" (2004).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 56%
Summary: In 2035, detective Del Spooner (Smith) investigates a high-profile death and suspects that the victim's android assistant may be responsible.
"I, Robot" received a mixed reception from critics, who enjoyed the summer blockbuster but wanted it to go deeper.
"Some stirring action sequences and a fascinating futuristic setting keeps things entertaining, even if this loose adaptation of the Isaac Asimov doesn't always take the most original approach possible," Leigh Paatsch wrote for the Herald Sun.
He portrayed the Genie in Disney's live-action "Aladdin" (2019).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 57%
Summary: After summoning a powerful Genie (Smith), street thief Aladdin (Mena Massoud) tries to win over the heart of Princess Jasmine (Naomi Scott) and change his life for the better.
Although it didn't dazzle critics the way that the animated original did, "Aladdin" still had its fair share of admirers.
"Overall, 'Aladdin' wasn't perfect, but nothing will ever live up to the classic '92 version," Aramide Tinubu wrote for Stylecaster. "Still, if you have a kiddo, or if you're still a big kid at heart, we certainly recommend it."
The actor portrayed Dr. Bennet Omalu in "Concussion" (2015).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 58%
Summary: Inspired by a true story, "Concussion" centers on Dr. Bennet Omalu's (Smith) efforts to spread awareness about the dangers of football-related brain trauma.
Many critics felt like "Concussion" could've been a truly gripping drama if it had benefited from better direction.
"'Concussion' is an interesting story that's diminished by its own apparent desire to be seen as significantly greater than the sum of its parts," wrote Olly Richards for NME.
Smith starred as Chris Gardner in "The Pursuit of Happyness" (2006).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 67%
Summary: With his young son (Jaden) at his side, Chris Gardner (Smith) struggles to break out of a brutal cycle of poverty, eviction, and unemployment in the adaptation of the book of the same name.
Some critics couldn't look past the melodrama, but "The Pursuit of Happyness" earned overwhelming praise for Smith's central acting performance.
"It is Will Smith's lead performance in this that really stole the show and won me over," Nicholas Oon reviewed for Maximum Hype.
Smith portrayed Muhammad Ali in "Ali" (2001).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 68%
Summary: This sports biopic traces Muhammad Ali's (Smith) origins, from promising young boxer to philanthropist and activist.
Overall, critics felt like "Ali" was an admirable attempt to celebrate the athlete's life and career.
"I respect it enormously, but it feels like an art film in search of a movie," Ansen wrote for Newsweek.
He was Robert Neville in the apocalyptic drama "I Am Legend" (2007).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 68%
Summary: With his loyal dog by his side, scientist Robert Neville (Smith) wanders a post-apocalyptic world filled with vampiric mutants in the hopes of finding other survivors.
Critics largely agreed that the science-fiction film wouldn't be the same if Smith wasn't carrying it.
"Smith turns in a terrific performance, nailing Neville's angst while allowing room for humor," Calvin Wilson wrote for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
He starred as Steven Hiller in "Independence Day" (1996).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 68%
Summary: Over the Fourth of July weekend, an alien race arrives and threatens to overtake the globe, as captain Steven Hiller (Smith) and military forces around the world rise to the occasion.
Despite being called formulaic and chock-full of cheesy dialogue, "Independence Day" still endures with reviewers as a solid blockbuster.
"'Independence Day,' then and now, remains the epitome of a stand-up-and-cheer movie," Don Shanahan wrote for 25 Years Later.
He came back as Agent J in "Men in Black III" (2012).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 68%
Summary: Agent J (Smith) travels back in time to stop the unthinkable from happening when he realizes Agent K's (Jones) life is on the line.
Although imperfect, "Men in Black III" was still appreciated by many critics, who thought it shook off the shortcomings of the second installment.
"While it's a little thrown together, 'Men in Black 3' definitely has one thing going for it: The filmmakers seem focused on recapturing not just the style but also the soul of the original," Tim Grierson reviewed for Deadspin.
In "Hitch" (2005), Smith starred as Alex Hitchens.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 69%
Summary: After years of striking out with the ladies, Albert (Kevin James) seeks help from love guru Alex "Hitch" Hitchens (Smith). But when Hitch meets Sara (Eva Mendes), he realizes he may need to rethink his own approach to love.
It would never win any Oscars, but the romantic comedy still yielded plenty of laughs from critics.
"It's witty, full of romantic wisdom and makes up for in laughs what it lacks in substance," Sloan Freer wrote for Radio Times.
Smith was Robert Clayton Dean in “Enemy of the State” (1998).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 72%
Summary: When a videotape of a murdered congressman comes under his possession, Robert Clayton Dean (Smith) races to prove his innocence and pin down the ones responsible.
Although spotty in a few places, "Enemy of State" confirmed Smith's rising status as a Hollywood star.
In a review for Santa Cruz Sentinel, Michael Caither wrote that director Tony Scott "creates suspense by utilizing believable technology and realistic, well-grounded characters."
Smith played an ESPN reporter in "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues" (2013).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 75%
Summary: After Ron Burgundy (Will Ferrell) secures a spot on the world's first 24-hour news network, he brings back his old crew (Paul Rudd, Steve Carell, and David Koechner) to climb in the ratings.
Critics largely agreed that the second installment didn't reach the same heights as the original, but that didn't stop them from laughing.
"For all its faults, 'Anchorman 2' manages to hit its funny mark," Josh Terry wrote for Deseret News.
He returned as Mike Lowrey for "Bad Boys for Life" (2020).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 76%
Summary: Up against the biggest case of their careers, an injured Mike (Smith) and recently retired Marcus (Lawrence) are forced to partner up with their younger counterparts to get the job done.
Critics said "Bad Boys for Life" was a fitting action-comedy for anyone who loves quippy humor and flashy action sequences.
"Half of the draw is the action, and the filmmakers amp things up nicely," Alex Bentley wrote for Culture Map. "... The other half of the draw is the chemistry between Smith and Lawrence, and it remains great."
In "Spies in Disguise" (2019), he voiced super-spy Lance Sterling.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 77%
Summary: After suave secret agent Lance Sterling (voiced by Smith) accidentally turns himself into a pigeon, he must rely on the help of his scientific assistant (voiced by Tom Holland) to continue his mission.
"Spies in Disguise" earned praise from critics as a sweet and simplistic animated treat.
Critic Hagan Osborne wrote that it earned solid points for its "impressive visuals, high-octane action, humour, and strong performances from the voice cast."
The actor was Manny in "Where the Day Takes You" (1992).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 80%
Summary: After getting out of jail, King (Dermot Mulroney) returns to his life as a Los Angeles runaway with his crew and friends (Smith, Balthazar Getty, Boyle, and Sean Astin).
Critics called "Where the Day Takes You" a hard-hitting drama that showcased the talents of a slew of young actors.
"The movie ... shows a side of runaway kids we haven't seen before: how they form surrogate families in the streets, seeking reassurance and security that they never felt at home," critic Roger Ebert wrote.
In the film "Six Degrees of Separation" (1993), Smith played Paul.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 88%
Summary: Two art dealers, Flan (Donald Sutherland) and Ouisa Kittredge (Stockard Channing), are thrown for a loop when they're roped into a con by a seemingly innocent stranger named Paul (Smith).
Intelligent, gripping, and well-acted, "Six Degrees of Separation" garnered high praise from critics.
"A rare sight: a sharply observed Hollywood satire of poignant ideas, such as opportunities in life, achieving fame in American society, and how we all are in one way or another con men," wrote critic Emanuel Levy.
Smith originated his role as Agent J in "Men in Black" (1997).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 92%
Summary: New York cop James Darrel Edwards (Smith) is recruited to a secret galactic organization and rebranded as "Agent J" so that he can assist veteran Agent K (Jones) and save the planet from alien invaders.
Hailed as refreshingly creative and wildly entertaining, "Men in Black" has long endured as one of Smith's best-reviewed movies.
"'Men in Black' is the wryest, sharpest, most entertaining special effects film in recent memory, a simultaneous participant and mocking parody of the more-bang-for-your-buck behemoth genre," Paul Tatara wrote for CNN.
Smith portrayed Richard Williams in "King Richard" (2021).
Rotten Tomatoes score: 91%
Summary: "King Richard" tells the true story of how tennis stars Venus (Saniyya Sidney) and Serena Williams (Demi Singleton) climbed to fame through the support of their parents Brandi (Aunjanue Ellis) and Richard (Smith).
Critics rushed to praise "King Richard" as a compelling and complex biopic that uplifts its feature stars.
"Funny and inspirational, [Smith] disappears into the role of the man obsessed with bringing his daughters to the top of their game," Richard Roeper wrote for the Chicago Sun-Times.
Smith appeared as himself in the documentary "Dads" (2019), his best-reviewed work.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 94%
Summary: This heart-warming documentary from actress-director Bryce Dallas Howard shines a light on remarkable fathers around the world.
Critics said it was hard to fight a smile when watching this touching and personal documentary.
Critic Steve Crum called the film "a joyful, tearful, happy discovery of the re-defining of fatherhood."
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