Top 15 Best Natural Disaster Movies

Best Natural Disaster Movies - Extra

#5. This is The End

This is The End

As far as following the rules goes, this one might be a little controversial, but since we made up the rules for this countdown, we’re also allowed to break them if anyone has a problem with it. Depending on your beliefs, there’s probably no more natural of a disaster than that of The Rapture, so this apocalyptic, raunchy comedy fits perfectly in this line-up. There’s plenty of destruction and death, especially of recognizable celebrities, and it just gets worse and worse, right up until the arrival of the devil and his big, swingin’ dick. This was one of my favorite movies of 2013, and while it’s not for everyone, it’s one of the more unique presentations of the end of the world we’ve seen on the big screen.

#4. Twister


Bill Paxton is one of only two actors to be killed by a Terminator, a Predator and one of the xenomorphs from Aliens. But mother nature just couldn’t get the job done in what is easily the best tornado film ever made. Paxton is forced to team with his ex-wife (Helen Hunt) as the latter’s storm chasing team is trying to get an experimental machine into the heart of a tornado in order to learn more about these swirling devils. At the time, the special effects were state of the art, and while some of them haven’t aged well, this was an impressive, suspenseful film that sparked quite the obsession with tornadoes. The sight of a cow flying through the sky is iconic because of this movie, and that’s quite an achievement. Plus, this has one of my favorite performances from the late Philip Seymour Hoffman.

#3. The Impossible

The Impossible

For the most part, tidal waves and tsunamis have been used on the big screen as catalysts for other tragedies, or just being one of the side effects of an even bigger disaster. But this harrowing, true story gives the tsunami the spotlight by itself as a family is torn apart while on vacation when a massive wave strikes their resort in Thailand. Ewan McGregor and Naomi Watts are just phenomenal in this story that will pull the heartstrings right out of your chest. There’s something to be said about the amazing visual effects in the film as well.

#2. Armageddon


Just after the Honest Trailer for Michael Bay‘s space action adventure surfaced, this purely fun flick almost made it to the top of the countdown. Superior to Deep Impact in every way, despite the fact that having oil drillers learning to become astronauts, instead of vice versa, makes no damn sense, even the most cynical cinephile can have a bit of fun with this one. There’s a colorful ensemble cast, some of the best comedy you’ll see in a Michael Bay film (which admittedly isn’t a crowning achievement), and plenty of contradictory explosions in space. Also, did you know this is in the Criterion Collection? It’s a certified masterpiece.

#1. Children of Men

Children of Men

In what might be the most slow-moving disaster in this entire line-up, Children of Men takes away the one thing that allows humans to survive great disasters: the ability to reproduce. For 18 years, the human race has suddenly become infertile. The world is in chaos and the United Kingdom is the only nation with a “stable” government. This is a disaster unlike any other, because it’s not killing off any people who are already living, but it’s taking away their hope for the future, which is almost worse. And even more terrifying, there’s no medical way to fix it.

Aside from this unique premise, director Alfonso Cuaron (Gravity) makes this film a must-see simply because of how it was shot. There are several single-shot sequences that are positively mind-blowing, predecessors to what Alejandro Gonzalez Intarritu would accomplish with Birdman. This is easily the best performance Clive Owen has given in his career, and this is also one of the best sci-fi films ever made, in my opinion.

That’s all for my Top 15 Best Natural Disaster Movies. Before you vehemently disagree with any of my picks and offer your own, make sure you understand which movies we intentionally didn’t include in this line-up. Otherwise, sound off with any of your other picks below!

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