Top 10 Will Smith Movies and their IMDB Scores

He may forever be the ‘Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ to many, but Will Smith is far more than just another rapper-turned-actor. This talented thespian has a spectacular catalogue of work and is recognised as one of the most influential African-American actors of his generation. From science fiction to comedy, intense drama and slick buddy movies, the list of the top Will Smith movies of all time is a varied selection of genres and styles.

We love Will here at VOX Cinemas, and will happily sit down with a bucket of popcorn to watch any of the offerings in the Will Smith filmography. With so many to choose from, it's hard to narrow it down, but we've finally put together our list of the top 10 Will Smith movies and their IMDb scores.

1. The Pursuit of Happyness – 2006 (8.0)

This is, many feel, Will Smith’s seminal film and certainly one of the top Will Smith movies of all time. Nominated for an Oscar and widely acclaimed by critics and audiences alike, it’s based on a true story of a struggling salesman whose world starts to fall apart when his wife leaves him and their young son. The two of them embark on a life-affirming journey together, strengthening the father-son bond. Starring Thandiwe Newton, Jaden Smith, and Brian Howe.

2. Seven Pounds – 2008 (7.6)

Hot on the back of the success of the Pursuit of Happyness, Seven Pounds follows a similar vein regarding redemption and soul-searching. Smith plays a man whose past life leaves him wanting redemption. He achieves this by changing the lives of seven complete strangers. All seems to go well, right up to the point where he falls in love with one of the strangers. Also starring Rosario Dawson, Woody Harrelson, and Michael Ealy.

3. Men In Black – 1997 (7.4)

This is the film that made Smith an international superstar and is regularly voted one of the top comedy sci-fi films of all time. A dedicated cop is invited to join an elite and secretive organization, the Men in Black, who defend the planet against alien invasion on a daily basis. He quickly discovers that the world he thought he knew is very different, and already home to aliens from across the galaxy. A rip-roaring adventure that’s one of the top Will Smith movies and a family favorite. Also starring Tommy Lee Jones, Linda Fiorentino, and Vincent D'Onofrio.

4. Enemy of the State – 1998 (7.3)

Throughout this period, Smith’s films alternated from lightweight comedies to heavyweight thrillers. Enemy of the State is the latter, a tour-de-force by Smith as a lawyer who becomes embroiled in a plot that snares him in a tangled political web. Smith accidentally ends up with key evidence that could end the career of a prominent Washington politician who, along with the NSA, want to make sure that Smith stays silent – permanently. Also starring Gene Hackman, Jon Voight, and Lisa Bonet.

5. I Am Legend – 2007 (7.2)

Widely acclaimed as one of the best Will Smith movies, I Am Legend is an adaptation of the 1954 novel by Richard Matheson. Set in New York, Smith’s character is effectively the ‘last man on earth’ after a terrifying virus kills the lucky ones and turns the rest of the population into violent mutants. He has to stay alive, try to contact any other survivors and try to find a cure using his own immunity as the basis. A powerful science fiction film that stormed the box office and became an instant success. Also starring Alice Braga, Charlie Tahan, and Salli Richardson-Whitfield.

6. I, Robot – 2004 (7.1)

Set in the future, this visually brilliant film examines what happens when a robot breaks ‘Asimov’s Laws of Robotics’ and harms a human. Technophobe cop Del Spooner, played by Smith, investigates the apparent suicide of a leading robotics scientist. His investigation leads him deeper down the rabbit hole, eventually uncovering a potential threat to the very existence of humanity. In the age of AI and advanced robotics, I, Robot has taken on new meaning and even more gravitas. Also starring Bridget Moynahan, Bruce Greenwood, and Alan Tudyk.

7. Independence Day – 1996 (7.0)

It's big, it's brash, and it was a box office smash from the moment it was released. Independence Day is full-on alien invasion territory, with Smith playing a heroic pilot who helps nerdy scientist Jeff Goldblum to stop aliens from obliterating the human race. Winning a technical Oscar for Best Visual Effects, Independence Day set the bar for all sci-fi films afterwards and was one of the biggest-grossing films of the 1990s. Also starring Bill Pullman, Jeff Goldblum, and Mary McDonnell.

8. Bad Boys – 1995 (6.8)

The 1990s saw a rash of buddy cop movies, but this outing is one of the best Will Smith movies and a slick, fast-paced variation on the theme. A witness to a murder is protected by two Miami detectives, one suave, wealthy, and sophisticated, the other a family man. While protecting the witness, the two detectives also have to investigate how a crime gang managed to steal millions of dollars worth of heroin from the Miami PD evidence locker. Also starring Martin Lawrence, Lisa Boyle, and Michael Taliferro.

9. Six Degrees of Separation – 1993 (6.8)

Breaking away from the ‘Fresh Prince’ persona was hard for Smith, but Six Degrees of Separation went a long way to helping him make the move into serious film acting. An affluent, upper-middle-class New York couple find their lives inextricably linked to that of a young African-American man who is not exactly what he says he is. Will Smith demonstrates that beneath the joker exterior is a serious actor with a great deal of talent in one of his lesser-known films, which deserves its place in the top ten Will Smith films of all time. Also starring Stockard Channing, Donald Sutherland, and Ian McKellen.

10. Ali – 2001 (6.7)

Our final inclusion in this Will Smith filmography is a truly epic story – the life and sporting career of the legendary Mohammed Ali from 1964 to 1974. During those ten years, Ali truly was ‘The Greatest’, as he demolished all who challenged him in the ring, but found himself up against his most powerful opponent – the US government. Smith plays Ali with incredible power and passion, not just examining his sporting prowess, but the principles of the man who refused to fight in the Vietnam War, and his battles both in the ring and the courtroom. Also starring Jamie Foxx, Jon Voight, and Mario Van Peebles. A spectacular film and a great one to round off our list of the top ten Will Smith movies.

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