(Photo by Warner Bros. / courtesy Everett Collection)

All Godzilla Movies Ranked

Born out of nuclear brimstone, the Godzilla series since 1955 has, by turns, served as a manifestation of ecological fears and unchecked human aggression, a satire on politics and government bureaucracy, and a vehicle for giant monsters yelling each other to death.

In this countdown of the best Godzilla movies ranked by Tomatometer alongside the worst, we have the aformentioned 1955 original, and the kaiju-popularizing American version (Godzilla: King of the Monsters!) with Raymond Burr. Naturally, Japan became Godzilla’s deathmatch ring for decades, with title bouts featuring Ghidorah, Space Godzilla, Ebirah, Mechagodzilla, and more terrors of the deep, earth, space and beyond.

Hollywood productions have come in the form of the 1998 disaster epic, the 2014 update, and now, five years later, Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Warner Bros. is going all claws in with their Monsterverse, as Godzilla vs. Kong stomps into theaters in 2020. Before then, we’re ranking all Godzilla movies by adjusted Tomatometer. Let them fight!

#32
#32
Adjusted Score: 12.575%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: As the Japanese government tries to perfect new sources of energy, they discover that their longtime nemesis Godzilla is once... [More]
Directed By: Masâki Tezuka

#31
#31
Adjusted Score: 12.926%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Fifty years after he first attacked Tokyo, Godzilla is back on the rampage in this monster opus from Toho Studios.... [More]
Directed By: Masâki Tezuka

#30
#30
Adjusted Score: 19.389%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Giant monsters are rampaging in cities across the globe, and as the Earth Defense Force struggles to find a way... [More]
Directed By: Ryuhei Kitamura

#29

Godzilla 1985 (1985)
20%

#29
Adjusted Score: 18.201%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Ever since the 400-foot Japanese lizard-monster Gojira -- translated to Godzilla and great box-office success in the Western world --... [More]
Directed By: Koji Hashimoto, R.J. Kizer

#28

Godzilla (1998)
16%

#28
Adjusted Score: 19.922%
Critics Consensus: Without compelling characters or heart, Godzilla stomps on everything that made the original (or any monster movie worth its salt) a classic.
Synopsis: Toho's fire-breathing monster is back, but his roar is the only thing that hasn't changed. The computer-generated Godzilla threatens to... [More]
Directed By: Roland Emmerich

#27
#27
Adjusted Score: 25.15%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Everybody's favorite Tokyo-trashing mutant lizard strikes again. This go-around features not only the big guy, but also his Scrappy-Doo-like companion,... [More]
Directed By: Takao Okawara

#26
Adjusted Score: 25.013%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A continually ridiculed young boy dreams of traveling to Monster Island, where he is tutored in the art of fighting... [More]
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

#25
Adjusted Score: 30.701%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Godzilla must once again fight to protect his island domain (gee, you'd think he'd have installed a security system by... [More]
Directed By: Kensho Yamashita

#24
Adjusted Score: 38.717%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The giant scaly lizard surfaces and melts (with his flamethrower breath) a U.S. submarine. Enter an old Japanese mystic who... [More]
Starring:
Directed By: Shusuke Kaneko

#23
Adjusted Score: 45.06%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The intricately plotted 18th Godzilla film involves time-travel to a remote island in 1944, Terminator 2-type cyborgs, and cute bat-mites... [More]

#22
#22
Adjusted Score: 36.577%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: You know who Godzilla is. Megalon is a huge cockroach-like beast. Godzilla has been a good guy since 1961, so... [More]
Directed By: Jun Fukuda

#21
#21
Adjusted Score: 37.488%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A race of malevolent aliens bent on world domination unleash the ultimate weapon of destruction on mankind, leaving them with... [More]
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

#20
#20
Adjusted Score: 43.799%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

#19
Adjusted Score: 52.649%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Godzilla is reunited with one of his arch-enemies in this remake of the Japanese monster classic. When a meteorite crashes... [More]
Directed By: Takao Okawara

#18
#18
Adjusted Score: 45.413%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Four years after Toho's semi-successful re-launch of their Godzilla series with Godzilla 1985, the studio released this vastly-superior sequel. In... [More]
Directed By: Kazuki Omori

#17
Adjusted Score: 46.451%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Everyone's favorite big lizard gets ready to rumble in this sci-fi monsterfest. On Monster Island, an egg is discovered in... [More]
Directed By: Takao Okawara

#16
#16
Adjusted Score: 48.01%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Boasting better than average special effects, this is a movie with all flash and little substance until the final scenes.... [More]

#15
Adjusted Score: 56.728%
Critics Consensus: Godzilla: King of the Monsters delivers spectacular kaiju action -- and reaffirms that cutting-edge effects are still no substitute for a good story.
Synopsis: The new story follows the heroic efforts of the crypto-zoological agency Monarch as its members face off against a battery... [More]
Directed By: Michael Dougherty

#14
#14
Adjusted Score: 56.328%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Pilots discover a creature the same species as Godzilla battling a monster of equal size named Anguirus and alert the... [More]

#13
Adjusted Score: 57.007%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The seventh film in Toho's Godzilla series (and the first without the direction of Inoshiro Honda), this colorful installment finds... [More]
Directed By: Jun Fukuda

#12
#12
Adjusted Score: 58.065%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: One of the cheapest entries in Toho's Godzilla franchise, this alternately noisy and talky entry finds yet another batch of... [More]
Directed By: Jun Fukuda

#11
Adjusted Score: 58.519%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: This eco-conscious entry pits the Big Green Guy against a living mass of industrial sludge dubbed "Hedora." Capable of splitting... [More]
Directed By:

#10

Godzilla 2000 (2000)
57%

#10
Adjusted Score: 58.892%
Critics Consensus: Godzilla 2000 is cheesy, laughable, and good entertaining fun.
Synopsis: "Godzilla 2000" pits a 180 foot-high Godzilla against an alien life form aroused from its 6,000 year sleep in the... [More]
Directed By: Takao Okawara

#9

Son of Godzilla (1967)
60%

#9
Adjusted Score: 60.918%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The Japanese gargantuan reptile fathers a son who is a chip off the old eggshell. The men of the family... [More]
Directed By: Jun Fukuda

#8
Adjusted Score: 62.699%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: This time, the overgrown-lizard hero is confronted by a mechanical doppelganger, courtesy of an army of extraterrestrial apes. Unable to... [More]
Directed By: Jun Fukuda

#7
Adjusted Score: 75.352%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: When the populace of Tokyo is threatened, Godzilla, Rodan and Mothra go head-to-head-to-head with Ghidrah. Yosuke Natsuki, Yuriko Hoshi.... [More]
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

#6
#6
Adjusted Score: 75.146%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: From a lunar base of operations, the female Kilaakas lead by their Queen (Kyoko Ai) attach electronic collars to the... [More]
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

#5
Adjusted Score: 85.532%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Filmed in 1954 as Gojira, this grandaddy of all Japanese giant-reptile epics was picked up for American distribution two years... [More]

#4

Godzilla (2014)
75%

#4
Adjusted Score: 87.632%
Critics Consensus: With just enough human drama to anchor the sweeping spectacle of giant monsters smashing everything in sight, Gareth Edwards' Godzilla satisfyingly restores the franchise's fire-breathing glory.
Synopsis: In Summer 2014, the world's most revered monster is reborn as Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures unleash the epic... [More]
Directed By: Gareth Edwards (V)

#3
Adjusted Score: 88.011%
Critics Consensus: Godzilla Resurgence offers a refreshingly low-fi -- and altogether entertaining -- return to the monster's classic creature-feature roots.
Synopsis: Make way for the ultimate homage to one of the most enduring legends of the big screen-Godzilla! The King of... [More]

#2
Adjusted Score: 92.352%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In this Japanese sci-fi fantasy, the gigantic lepidopteran Mothra returns after battling it out with King Kong. Now he has... [More]
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 101.646%
Critics Consensus: More than straight monster-movie fare, Gojira offers potent, sobering postwar commentary.
Synopsis: One of the longest-running series in film history began with Ishiro Honda's grim, black-and-white allegory for the devastation wrought on... [More]
Directed By: Ishirô Honda

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