Dwayne Johnson is one the last great movie stars. As a wrestler, he built a career on physical prowess and dynamic charisma, and those qualities translated neatly into a successful acting career. Whether he’s kicking butt, tickling funny bones or (frequently) both, Dwayne Johnson has the uncanny ability to make almost every movie better, just by showing up for work. And he works hard. Let’s take a look at the impressively prolific career of the beloved movie star and rank his films from best to worst.
(Note: The following films are ranked based on their quality and on their Dwayne Johnson-ness. Films in which he only has a minor role will mostly rank low, and films in which he has little more than a cameo will receive unranked honorable mentions — and even then only if they are noteworthy.)
Honorable Mention: “The Mummy Returns” (2001)
It’s hard to judge “The Mummy Returns” as a “Dwayne Johnson movie”: The wrestler-turned-actor is in the film for a very short prologue, and then he comes back at the end as a CGI scorpion monster. But it’s Johnson’s first major role in a movie, so it deserves a shout-out for that reason and (since the movie is so hyperactively shrill it’s kind of hard to watch) for that reason alone.
Honorable Mention: “The Other Guys” (2010)
Johnson has done more than one cop comedy where his cameo amounts to little more than a joke (see also: “Reno 911!: Miami”), but his appearance in Adam McKay’s smart and subversive “The Other Guys” is a particular treat. Johnson appears as the heroic action movie ideal of law enforcement, opposite Samuel L. Jackson, only to die unexpectedly, forcing “the other guys” — Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg — to take center stage instead. It’s a small part, but Johnson owns it, and the rest of the movie is funny as heck too.