We’ve got plenty of “video game movies.” Movies, like the much-maligned Super Mario Bros. or objectively-the-best-movie-ever-made Mortal Kombat, that adapt the world and characters of a video game and present a cinematic take on its narrative. What we lack are “movies about video games.” Movies that tackle one of our most important mediums of entertainment as a subject worth reckoning with, rather than more IP to plunder.
That might be why Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was such a surprise hit. The 2017 sequel to the beloved Robin Williams-starring ‘90s classic Jumanji took that delicious premise — what if the dangers of a board game were real? — and updated it into the contemporary space of how we play games. In other words: What if you got sucked into a video game? And those dangers were real? Thus, beyond its blockbuster-requisite gags and set pieces (and its movie star charisma from Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black, and Karen Gillan), the film becomes a commentary about how we engage with video games as well.
In honor of the next entry in this new Jumanji meta-franchise — Jumanji: The Next Level, which opens December 13, 2019 — here are the best films about video games ranked. Ready to play?