The 10 Best Ridley Scott Movies, Ranked

Starting his journey in movies from Royal College Art of London, Sir Ridley Scott has never failed to amaze the audiences. Right since his first film ‘Alien’, which has now become a cult piece, he has given us some phenomenal pieces of works in the form of ‘Blade Runner’, ‘Gladiator’ and ‘The Martian’, being his latest, to name a few. With just three nominations for ‘Best Director’ at the Oscars — and no win — Scott is one of the most underrated directors of all times. Here is the list of top Ridley Scott movies, from his impressive filmography. You can stream some of these Ridley Scott movies online on Netflix or Amazon Prime or Hulu.


10. Matchstick Men (2003)

Matchstick men

‘Matchstick Men’ is about a con artist, whose life has been severed by obsessive-compulsive disorder. He and his partner plan to pull off a lucrative swindle, when his daughter, with whom he has not met since many years, re-appears again. Nicholas Cage played the lead role of the con-man in this film.


9. Black Hawk Down (2001)

black hawk down

One of the most influential war movies of our times, ‘Black Hawk Down’ features an ensemble cast of Josh Hartnett, Ewan McGregor, Eric Bana and Tom Hardy to name a few. The film tells us about a 123 US soldiers, who were dropped in the city of Mogadishu to extract two lieutenants of the Somali warlord and the ensuing battle between the rangers and heavily-armed Somalis. It bagged two Oscars, for Best Film Editing and Best Sound Mixing, that year.


8. Body of Lies (2008)

body of lies

‘Body of Lies’ follows the attempts of the CIA and Jordanian intelligence to work together to catch a notorious terrorist, Al-Saleem. The film brings into light the tension between Arab and Western societies and effectiveness of counter-intelligence methods. Performances of Leonardo di Caprio, Russell Crowe and Mark Strong were praised throughout.


7. American Gangster (2007)

american gangster

A biographical crime-drama film, ‘American Gangster’ tells us about the career of Frank Lucas, who was a powerful member in the social elite, but secretly smuggled heroin into the States and was caught after years of attempts by a task force led by Richie Roberts. Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe led the cast along with many others.


6. Prometheus (2012)


Serving as a prequel to Scott’s cult horror-sci fi film ‘Alien’ (1979) and as a fifth instalment in the ‘Alien’ franchise, ‘Prometheus’ follows a group of scientists in a spaceship called Prometheus sent to the darkest corners of the universe to find the roots of mankind. But what they find goes beyond any of their expectations. This highly underrated piece of work features actors like Michael Fassbender, Noomi Rapace, Charlize Theron, Guy Pearce and Idris Elba.

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5. Thelma & Louise (1991)

thelma and louise

‘Thelma & Louise’ follows a sweet reconciliation of long time friends when Thelma (Geena Davis) accompanies Louise (Susan Sarandon) on a small fishing trip. But things go awry and disaster follows when unexpected events happen to them — Louise kills a man, who attempts to rape Thelma, and then, both of them flee to Mexico. Both Davis and Sarandon were nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress.


4. Gladiator (2000)


An epic historical-drama film, ‘Gladiator’ follows the life of Roman general, Maximus Decimus Meridius, who is betrayed after the son of Emperor Marcus Aurelius, Commodus, murders his father to usurp his throne. What follows is the epic rising of Meridius, through fights and climbing ranks in the gladiator arenas, to avenge the murder of his family and the emperor. The film won five awards at the Academy Awards that year, including the Best Film and Best Actor for Russell Crowe.


3. The Martian (2015)


The latest film of Scott follows a group a NASA scientists going on their expedition to Mars, when a fierce storm force them to leave behind a crew member, Mark, on his own stranded on a planet where there is no life. It is with the wits of himself Mark keeps himself alive for more than a year, when his crew hatches an immaculate rescue plan and pulls it off daringly. The film was an immense success in the box office and received two Golden Globes. It has also received 7 Academy Award nominations including Best Picture and Best Actor for Damon. Read Review ..


2. Alien (1979)


One of the most successful movies of Scott, ‘Alien’ tells us of a group of explorers, who, in their expedition, receive a distress call from an unexplored planet. When they reach the planet, they start looking for survivors and realize that the call was indeed a warning and a deadly bioform has already joined them in their vessel, Nostromo. The success of the film sprawled a franchise of sequels, novels, books and games. ‘Alien’ has become a cult favorite among cinema lovers since and remains one of the best sci-fi movies ever made.


1. Blade Runner (1982)


‘Blade Runner’ tells us of a dystopian society, where engineered replicants are made by Tyrell Corporation to use them for dangerous work in off-world colonies and are eliminated if they try to return to Earth by Blade Runners. The film follows such an operative (Harrison Ford) who is assigned to hunt down a group of recently escaped replicants. The film brought the writings of Philip K. Dick into the light and several films and TV shows have been made of his novels since. Though ‘Blade Runner’ was criticized heavily at the time of its release, it has become a cult phenomenon since. It has won several accolades throughout the years and remains to be one of the best movies ever made.

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