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(Photo by Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images)

All Robert Rodriguez Movies Ranked

Texas native Robert Rodriguez developed his signature kinetic style way back while he was still in film school, when a short film he made called Bedhead earned him enough attention to convince him to pursue film seriously. Since then, Rodriguez has embraced his love of genre fare and become one of Hollywood’s foremost purveyors of slick, well-crafted grindhouse-style action. He began his big screen career with bombastic modern westerns like Desperado and From Dusk Till Dawn, the latter of which featured fellow cult connoisseur Quentin Tarantino. The friendship between the two of them produced multiple collaborations over the years, including the neo-noir Sin City and the aptly named joint double feature Grindhouse, which spawned a tongue-in-cheek spinoff franchise.

In between all of that, Rodriguez found time to crank out an effects-driven, family-friendly adventure about a couple of Spy Kids, and the film was such a critical and commercial hit that it spawned three sequels, all of which Rodriguez also directed. It’s no wonder James Cameron entrusted him with his long-in-development Alita: Battle Angel, which quickly emerged as a cult favorite. His latest was Netflix’s We Can Be Heroes. With all of that in mind, we thought it was about time to take a look at his filmography and see how his films match up with each other. Read on to see the full list and see where your favorites land!

#19
Adjusted Score: 23225%
Critics Consensus: The decision to turn this kiddie fantasy into a 3-D film was a miscalculation.
Synopsis: A 10-year-old (Cayden Boyd) and his imaginary friends (Taylor Lautner, Taylor Dooley) try to save a distant planet from the... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#18
Adjusted Score: 23604%
Critics Consensus: Burdened by a rote plot and unfunny scatological humor, All the Time in the World suggests that the Spy Kids franchise has run its course.
Synopsis: Upon learning that their stepmother (Jessica Alba) is a retired spy, twins step up to help save the world from... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#17

Machete Kills (2013)
29%

#17
Adjusted Score: 34497%
Critics Consensus: While possessed with the same schlocky lunacy as its far superior predecessor, Machete Kills loses the first installment's spark in a less deftly assembled sequel.
Synopsis: The president recruits ex-Federale Machete (Danny Trejo) to take down an eccentric arms dealer who plans to spread war and... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#16
Adjusted Score: 51176%
Critics Consensus: A Dame to Kill For boasts the same stylish violence and striking visual palette as the original Sin City, but lacks its predecessor's brutal impact.
Synopsis: In the central story, Dwight McCarthy (Josh Brolin) struggles with his inner demons and tries to maintain control until his... [More]

#15
#15
Adjusted Score: 48505%
Critics Consensus: The movie will be found wanting if one is not taken in by the 3-D visuals.
Synopsis: A boy tries to rescue his sister (Alexa Vega) inside a virtual-reality game created by a madman out to enslave... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#14

Shorts (2009)
47%

#14
Adjusted Score: 49212%
Critics Consensus: Shorts has imagination and energy, but most viewers beyond elementary school will likely tire of the kiddie humor and sensory overload.
Synopsis: An 11-year-old boy and his friends must save the day when townspeople get their hands on a rainbow-colored rock that... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#13

The Faculty (1998)
55%

#13
Adjusted Score: 57097%
Critics Consensus: Rip-off of other sci-fi thrillers.
Synopsis: High-school students (Jordana Brewster, Clea DuVall, Laura Harris) gradually begin to suspect that their teachers are from another planet.... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#12
#12
Adjusted Score: 78513%
Critics Consensus: Alita: Battle Angel's story struggles to keep up with its special effects, but fans of futuristic sci-fi action may still find themselves more than sufficiently entertained.
Synopsis: Alita is a futuristic cyborg who wakes up in a doctor's clinic with no memory of who she is. She... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#11

Desperado (1995)
66%

#11
Adjusted Score: 68098%
Critics Consensus: Desperado contains almost too much action and too little story to sustain interest, but Antonio Banderas proves a charismatic lead in Robert Rodriguez's inventive extravaganza.
Synopsis: A guitar-playing stranger (Antonio Banderas) shoots up a Mexican cantina while seeking the drug dealer (Joaquim de Almeida) who killed... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 64967%
Critics Consensus: A pulpy crime drama/vampire film hybrid, From Dusk Till Dawn is an uneven but often deliriously enjoyable B-movie.
Synopsis: Desperado brothers (George Clooney, Quentin Tarantino) kidnap a preacher (Harvey Keitel) and his kids, commandeer their RV and wind up... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#9
Adjusted Score: 71506%
Critics Consensus: Violent, pulpy, loopy fun, with Depp stealing the show.
Synopsis: A corrupt CIA agent (Johnny Depp) recruits a tormented gunman (Antonio Banderas) to stop conspirators from assassinating the president of... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#8

Red 11 (2019)
67%

#8
Adjusted Score: 22902%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A student tries to buy his way out of a huge debt to the tune of $7,000 by volunteering for... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#7

Machete (2010)
72%

#7
Adjusted Score: 78784%
Critics Consensus: Machete is messy, violent, shallow, and tasteless -- and that's precisely the point of one of the summer's most cartoonishly enjoyable films.
Synopsis: Framed for a covert assassination, a blade-wielding former Federale (Danny Trejo) carves a path of blood, bullets and broken hearts... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#6

We Can Be Heroes (2020)
74%

#6
Adjusted Score: 75305%
Critics Consensus: Although it may be too zany for adults, We Can Be Heroes balances its sophisticated themes with heart and zealous originality.
Synopsis: When alien invaders kidnap Earth's superheroes, their children must team up and learn to work together if they want to... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#5

Planet Terror (2007)
76%

#5
Adjusted Score: 75241%
Critics Consensus: A cool and hip grindhouse throwback, Planet Terror is an unpredictable zombie thrillride.
Synopsis: A one-legged go-go dancer (Rose McGowan) and her ex-lover (Freddy Rodriguez) join forces with other survivors to battle a horde... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#4
Adjusted Score: 79335%
Critics Consensus: Though the concept is no longer fresh, Spy Kids 2 is still an agreeable and energetic romp.
Synopsis: A young sister (Alexa Vega) and brother encounter mutants and a wild scientist while searching for a device that could... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#3

Sin City (2005)
77%

#3
Adjusted Score: 85788%
Critics Consensus: Visually groundbreaking and terrifically violent, Sin City brings the dark world of Frank Miller's graphic novel to vivid life.
Synopsis: Lawmen, prostitutes (Devon Aoki, Alexis Bledel), a hulking thug and other sordid characters run amok in a crime-ridden metropolis.... [More]

#2

El Mariachi (1992)
91%

#2
Adjusted Score: 97367%
Critics Consensus: Made on a shoestring budget, El Mariachi's story is not new. However, the movie has so much energy that it's thoroughly enjoyable.
Synopsis: Henchmen mistake a traveling musician (Carlos Gallardo) for a crazed killer (Reinol Martinez) in a small Mexican town.... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

#1

Spy Kids (2001)
93%

#1
Adjusted Score: 97796%
Critics Consensus: A kinetic and fun movie that's sure to thrill children of all ages.
Synopsis: When a technical genius kidnaps retired spies (Antonio Banderas, Carla Gugino), only their children can save them.... [More]
Directed By: Robert Rodriguez

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