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(Photo by Paramount/ courtesy Everett Collection)

Michael Bay Movies Ranked by Tomatometer

We’re ranking the movies of Michael Bay by Tomatometer, including his ’90s blockbuster triple header (Bad Boys, The Rock, and the Criterion Collection-approved Armageddon), his 5-film run playing in the toybox with Transformers, and most recently Ambulance, which as drawn the strongest reviews of Bay’s career. And for more all-out Bayhem, we broke down the sweet science of explosions in Michael Bay movies. Alex Vo

#1

Ambulance (2022)
69%72%

#1
Adjusted Score: 78050%
Critics Consensus: At top speed and with sirens wailing, Ambulance comes riding to the rescue for audiences facing an emergency shortage of Michael Bay action thrills.
Synopsis: Over one day across the streets of L.A., three lives will change forever. In this breakneck thriller from director-producer Michael... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#2

The Rock (1996)
68%85%

#2
Adjusted Score: 71288%
Critics Consensus: For visceral thrills, it can't be beat. Just don't expect The Rock to engage your brain.
Synopsis: FBI chemical warfare expert Stanley Goodspeed (Nicolas Cage) is sent on an urgent mission with a former British spy, John... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#3

Transformers (2007)
58%85%

#3
Adjusted Score: 67264%
Critics Consensus: While believable characters are hard to come by in Transformers, the effects are staggering and the action is exhilarating.
Synopsis: The fate of humanity is at stake when two races of robots, the good Autobots and the villainous Decepticons, bring... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#4
Adjusted Score: 63683%
Critics Consensus: 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi is a comparatively mature and restrained effort from Michael Bay, albeit one that can't quite boast the impact its fact-based story deserves.
Synopsis: On Sept. 11, 2012, Islamic militants attack the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, killing Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and Sean... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#5

Pain & Gain (2013)
50%47%

#5
Adjusted Score: 57196%
Critics Consensus: It may be his most thought-provoking film to date, but Michael Bay's Pain & Gain ultimately loses its satirical edge in a stylized flurry of violent spectacle.
Synopsis: Danny Lupo (Mark Wahlberg), manager of the Sun Gym in 1990s Miami, decides that there is only one way to... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#6

Bad Boys (1995)
42%78%

#6
Adjusted Score: 45101%
Critics Consensus: Bad Boys stars Will Smith and Martin Lawrence have enjoyable chemistry; unfortunately, director Michael Bay too often drowns it out with set pieces and explosions in place of an actual story.
Synopsis: Miami-Dade detectives Mike Lowrey (Will Smith) and Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) blow a fuse when $100 million worth of heroin... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#7

The Island (2005)
39%63%

#7
Adjusted Score: 46780%
Critics Consensus: A clone of THX 1183, Coma, and Logan's Run, The Island is another loud and bombastic Michael Bay movie where explosions and chases matter more than characters, dialogue, or plot.
Synopsis: ... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#8

Armageddon (1998)
37%73%

#8
Adjusted Score: 42748%
Critics Consensus: Lovely to look at but about as intelligent as the asteroid that serves as the movie's antagonist, Armageddon slickly sums up the cinematic legacies of producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Michael Bay.
Synopsis: When an asteroid threatens to collide with Earth, NASA honcho Dan Truman (Billy Bob Thornton) determines the only way to... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#9

6 Underground (2019)
36%60%

#9
Adjusted Score: 40437%
Critics Consensus: 6 Underground is loud, frenetic, and finally preposterous -- which is either bad news or a hearty recommendation, depending how one feels about the movies of Michael Bay.
Synopsis: Six individuals from all around the globe, each the very best at what they do, have been chosen not only... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 44628%
Critics Consensus: Its special effects -- and 3D shots -- are undeniably impressive, but they aren't enough to fill up its loud, bloated running time, or mask its thin, indifferent script.
Synopsis: Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) and his new girlfriend, Carly (Rosie Huntington-Whiteley), join the fray when the evil Decepticons renew their... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#11

Pearl Harbor (2001)
24%66%

#11
Adjusted Score: 31065%
Critics Consensus: Pearl Harbor tries to be the Titanic of war movies, but it's just a tedious romance filled with laughably bad dialogue. The 40 minute action sequence is spectacular though.
Synopsis: This sweeping drama, based on real historical events, follows American boyhood friends Rafe McCawley (Ben Affleck) and Danny Walker (Josh... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#12

Bad Boys II (2003)
23%78%

#12
Adjusted Score: 29147%
Critics Consensus: Two and a half hours of explosions and witless banter.
Synopsis: The drug ecstasy is flowing into Miami, and the police want it stopped. Police Detective Marcus Burnett (Martin Lawrence) and... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#13
Adjusted Score: 29844%
Critics Consensus: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen is a noisy, underplotted, and overlong special effects extravaganza that lacks a human touch.
Synopsis: Two years after he and his Autobot friends saved the Earth from the Decepticons, Sam Witwicky (Shia LaBeouf) faces a... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#14
Adjusted Score: 24795%
Critics Consensus: With the fourth installment in Michael Bay's blockbuster Transformers franchise, nothing is in disguise: Fans of loud, effects-driven action will find satisfaction, and all others need not apply.
Synopsis: After an epic battle, a great city lies in ruins, but the Earth itself is saved. As humanity begins to... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay

#15
#15
Adjusted Score: 33527%
Critics Consensus: Cacophonous, thinly plotted, and boasting state-of-the-art special effects, The Last Knight is pretty much what you'd expect from the fifth installment of the Transformers franchise.
Synopsis: Humans are at war with the Transformers, and Optimus Prime is gone. The key to saving the future lies buried... [More]
Directed By: Michael Bay