Iconic and Inspirational VFXby andrewrzeller | created - 23 Sep 2017 | updated - 23 Sep 2017 | Public
Movies and series that have pushed the boundaries of VFX, popularized a style or technique, or created unforgettable imagery that continues to inspire active artists. -AZ
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1. 2012 (I) (2009)
PG-13 | 158 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
A frustrated writer struggles to keep his family alive when a series of global catastrophes threatens to annihilate mankind.
Votes: 322,087 | Gross: $166.11M
3. Avatar (2009)
PG-13 | 162 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
A paraplegic marine dispatched to the moon Pandora on a unique mission becomes torn between following his orders and protecting the world he feels is his home.
Votes: 1,020,243 | Gross: $760.51M
4. Alien (1979)
R | 116 min | Horror, Sci-Fi
After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.
Votes: 695,634 | Gross: $78.90M
5. Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991)
R | 137 min | Action, Sci-Fi
A cyborg, identical to the one who failed to kill Sarah Connor, must now protect her teenage son, John Connor, from a more advanced and powerful cyborg.
Votes: 885,485 | Gross: $204.84M
6. Jurassic Park (1993)
PG-13 | 127 min | Adventure, Sci-Fi, Thriller
During a preview tour, a theme park suffers a major power breakdown that allows its cloned dinosaur exhibits to run amok.
Votes: 763,259 | Gross: $402.45M
7. The Matrix (1999)
R | 136 min | Action, Sci-Fi
A computer hacker learns from mysterious rebels about the true nature of his reality and his role in the war against its controllers.
Votes: 1,466,416 | Gross: $171.48M
8. The Matrix Reloaded (2003)
R | 138 min | Action, Sci-Fi
Following the events of The Matrix (1999), Neo and the rebel leaders estimate they have 72 hours until 250,000 probes discover Zion and destroy it and its inhabitants. Neo must decide how he can save Trinity from a dark fate in his dreams.
Votes: 470,200 | Gross: $281.49M
9. The Matrix Revolutions (2003)
R | 129 min | Action, Sci-Fi
The human city of Zion defends itself against the massive invasion of the machines as Neo fights to end the war at another front while also opposing the rogue Agent Smith.
Votes: 408,082 | Gross: $139.31M
10. Hollow Man (2000)
R | 112 min | Action, Horror, Sci-Fi
When the leader of a team of scientists volunteers to be the test subject for their experiment in human invisibility, he slowly unravels and turns against them, with horrific consequences.
Votes: 113,211 | Gross: $73.21M
11. Life of Pi (2012)
PG | 127 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
A young man who survives a disaster at sea is hurtled into an epic journey of adventure and discovery. While cast away, he forms an unexpected connection with another survivor: a fearsome Bengal tiger.
Votes: 522,309 | Gross: $124.99M
12. Interstellar (2014)
PG-13 | 169 min | Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi
A team of explorers travel through a wormhole in space in an attempt to ensure humanity's survival.
Votes: 1,250,552 | Gross: $188.02M
13. Inception (2010)
PG-13 | 148 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
A thief who steals corporate secrets through the use of dream-sharing technology is given the inverse task of planting an idea into the mind of a CEO.
Votes: 1,789,173 | Gross: $292.58M
14. Forrest Gump (1994)
PG-13 | 142 min | Drama, Romance
The presidencies of Kennedy and Johnson, Vietnam, Watergate, and other history unfold through the perspective of an Alabama man with an IQ of 75.
Votes: 1,561,011 | Gross: $330.25M
16. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008)
PG-13 | 166 min | Drama, Fantasy, Romance
Tells the story of Benjamin Button, a man who starts aging backwards with bizarre consequences.
Votes: 528,937 | Gross: $127.51M
PG-13 | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Blacksmith Will Turner teams up with eccentric pirate "Captain" Jack Sparrow to save his love, the governor's daughter, from Jack's former pirate allies, who are now undead.
Votes: 947,675 | Gross: $305.41M
19. The Day After Tomorrow (2004)
PG-13 | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Jack Hall, paleoclimatologist, must make a daring trek from Washington, D.C. to New York City, to reach his son, trapped in the cross-hairs of a sudden international storm which plunges the planet into a new Ice Age.
Votes: 378,090 | Gross: $186.74M
20. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)
PG-13 | 179 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
While Frodo and Sam edge closer to Mordor with the help of the shifty Gollum, the divided fellowship makes a stand against Sauron's new ally, Saruman, and his hordes of Isengard.
Votes: 1,315,143 | Gross: $342.55M
PG-13 | 178 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
A meek Hobbit from the Shire and eight companions set out on a journey to destroy the powerful One Ring and save Middle-earth from the Dark Lord Sauron.
Votes: 1,471,143 | Gross: $315.54M
PG-13 | 201 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
Gandalf and Aragorn lead the World of Men against Sauron's army to draw his gaze from Frodo and Sam as they approach Mount Doom with the One Ring.
Votes: 1,454,511 | Gross: $377.85M
24. Independence Day (1996)
PG-13 | 145 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
The aliens are coming and their goal is to invade and destroy Earth. Fighting superior technology, mankind's best weapon is the will to survive.
Votes: 486,895 | Gross: $306.17M
25. Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
R | 118 min | Drama, Fantasy, War
In the Falangist Spain of 1944, the bookish young stepdaughter of a sadistic army officer escapes into an eerie but captivating fantasy world.
Votes: 560,262 | Gross: $37.63M
26. Twister (1996)
PG-13 | 113 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
Bill and Jo Harding, advanced storm chasers on the brink of divorce, must join together to create an advanced weather alert system by putting themselves in the cross-hairs of extremely violent tornadoes.
Votes: 159,762 | Gross: $241.72M
27. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011)
PG-13 | 130 min | Adventure, Drama, Fantasy
Harry, Ron, and Hermione search for Voldemort's remaining Horcruxes in their effort to destroy the Dark Lord as the final battle rages on at Hogwarts.
Votes: 674,584 | Gross: $381.01M
28. Starship Troopers (1997)
R | 129 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Humans in a fascist, militaristic future wage war with giant alien bugs in a satire of modern world politics.
Votes: 247,750 | Gross: $54.81M
29. Transformers (2007)
PG-13 | 144 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
An ancient struggle between two Cybertronian races, the heroic Autobots and the evil Decepticons, comes to Earth, with a clue to the ultimate power held by a teenager.
Votes: 562,751 | Gross: $319.07M
31. The Perfect Storm (2000)
PG-13 | 130 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
An unusually intense storm pattern catches some commercial fishermen unaware and puts them in mortal danger.
Votes: 145,164 | Gross: $182.62M
32. Kubo and the Two Strings (2016)
PG | 101 min | Animation, Action, Adventure
A young boy named Kubo must locate a magical suit of armour worn by his late father in order to defeat a vengeful spirit from the past.
Votes: 101,704 | Gross: $48.02M
33. King Kong (2005)
PG-13 | 187 min | Action, Adventure, Drama
In 1933 New York, an overly ambitious movie producer coerces his cast and hired ship crew to travel to the mysterious Skull Island, where they encounter Kong, a giant ape who is immediately smitten with leading lady Ann Darrow.
Votes: 360,301 | Gross: $218.08M
34. Kong: Skull Island (2017)
PG-13 | 118 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
A team of scientists explore an uncharted island in the Pacific, venturing into the domain of the mighty Kong, and must fight to escape a primal Eden.
Votes: 224,623 | Gross: $168.05M
35. Godzilla (2014)
PG-13 | 123 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
The world is beset by the appearance of monstrous creatures, but one of them may be the only one who can save humanity.
Votes: 341,031 | Gross: $200.68M
36. The Avengers (2012)
PG-13 | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Earth's mightiest heroes must come together and learn to fight as a team if they are going to stop the mischievous Loki and his alien army from enslaving humanity.
Votes: 1,144,783 | Gross: $623.36M
37. Iron Man (2008)
PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
After being held captive in an Afghan cave, billionaire engineer Tony Stark creates a unique weaponized suit of armor to fight evil.
Votes: 828,870 | Gross: $318.41M
38. Doctor Strange (2016)
PG-13 | 115 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
While on a journey of physical and spiritual healing, a brilliant neurosurgeon is drawn into the world of the mystic arts.
Votes: 474,521 | Gross: $232.64M
39. Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
PG-13 | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy
A group of intergalactic criminals are forced to work together to stop a fanatical warrior from taking control of the universe.
Votes: 902,582 | Gross: $333.18M
40. Deadpool (2016)
R | 108 min | Action, Adventure, Comedy
A fast-talking mercenary with a morbid sense of humor is subjected to a rogue experiment that leaves him with accelerated healing powers and a quest for revenge.
Votes: 790,340 | Gross: $363.07M
41. The Dark Knight (2008)
PG-13 | 152 min | Action, Crime, Drama
When the menace known as the Joker emerges from his mysterious past, he wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham. The Dark Knight must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice.
Votes: 2,009,751 | Gross: $534.86M
42. The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
PG-13 | 164 min | Action, Thriller
Eight years after the Joker's reign of anarchy, Batman, with the help of the enigmatic Catwoman, is forced from his exile to save Gotham City, now on the edge of total annihilation, from the brutal guerrilla terrorist Bane.
Votes: 1,355,626 | Gross: $448.14M
43. X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)
PG-13 | 132 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.
Votes: 604,986 | Gross: $233.92M
44. X-Men (2000)
PG-13 | 104 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
In a world where mutants (evolved super-powered humans) exist and are discriminated against, two groups form for an inevitable clash: the supremacist Brotherhood, and the pacifist X-Men.
Votes: 524,313 | Gross: $157.30M
45. X2 (2003)
PG-13 | 134 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
When anti-mutant colonel William Stryker kidnaps Professor X and attacks his school, the X-Men must ally with their archenemy Magneto to stop him.
Votes: 470,719 | Gross: $214.95M
46. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest (2006)
PG-13 | 151 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy
Jack Sparrow races to recover the heart of Davy Jones to avoid enslaving his soul to Jones' service, as other friends and foes seek the heart for their own agenda as well.
Votes: 602,406 | Gross: $423.32M
47. District 9 (2009)
R | 112 min | Sci-Fi, Thriller
An extraterrestrial race forced to live in slum-like conditions on Earth suddenly finds a kindred spirit in a government agent who is exposed to their biotechnology.
Votes: 595,554 | Gross: $115.65M
48. Chappie (2015)
R | 120 min | Action, Crime, Drama