Guy Ritchie, an illustrious English filmmaker, is known for making movies that belong to completely different genres. His repertoire mostly includes crime movies revolving around the British underworld, often made on an average budget. Additionally, there are big-budget comedy films such as Aladdin and action-adventures such as Sherlock Holmes. And while he clearly appears to be in his element with British crime films, his big-budget outputs have done well at the box office too.
Guy Ritchie has made only 12 movies in his career of over two decades, and only half of them have managed to receive some praise from critics, with only three gaining considerably wider positive appreciation.
Yet, one of the major reasons why cinemagoers look forward to Ritchie’s films is his directorial style that incorporates fast-paced action and thrill, often combined with dark humour. His crime films have stylish characters who bring a kind of high-octane energy to the screen.
Hence, the anticipation around his upcoming project, Operation Fortune: Ruse de Guerre, is very high. Like all of his other films barring the two Sherlock Holmes productions, Ritchie has co-written it. Through the film, he also reunites with his longtime collaborator Jason Statham, one of the best action superstars of all time.
Take a look at these Guy Ritchie films in order of their Rotten Tomatoes ratings
(Main image: IMDb; Featured image: Daniel Smith – © 2013 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc./IMDb)
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Release date: 11 October 2002
Cast: Madonna, Adriano Giannini
Tomatometer score: 5 percent
Synopsis: Rich and arrogant Amber Leighton (Madonna) finds herself shipwrecked on a deserted island with the deckhand Giuseppe (Giannini). Even as their convictions collide, they find themselves drawn to each other.
More about the film: Though it is the worst-rated of all Guy Ritchie movies, binge-watching would mean appreciating everything he has delivered so far. This is why, starting with this film, perhaps, adds a dimension to viewers’ perception and appreciation of Ritchie’s better works.
The film is a remake of the critically acclaimed 1974 Italian movie of the same name by Lina Wertmüller. At the time of making the film, Ritchie was married to Madonna. So, expectations were high from both the director and the ‘Queen of Pop.’ Yet it was panned for poor acting, terrible direction and sleep-inducing screenplay.
Image credit: IMDb
Release date: 22 September 2005 (UK)
Cast: Jason Statham, Ray Liotta, Mark Strong, André Benjamin, Vincent Pastore
Tomatometer score: 15 percent
Synopsis: Crime boss Dorothy Macha (Liotta) orders his men to kill his former underling Jake Green (Statham), a smart gambler. Jake then seeks the help of two of his friends to take on Dorothy.
More about the film: Statham and Ritchie have done four films together, and this is the worst of them. Though it is touted as an action film, Ritchie infused his then beliefs in Kabbalah — a Jewish mystical school of thought — into the story to give it a more philosophical touch. Critics, however, called it a pretentious movie.
Image credit: IMDb
Release date: 12 May 2017
Cast: Charlie Hunnam, Àstrid Bergès-Frisbey, Djimon Hounsou, Aidan Gillen, Jude Law, Eric Bana
Tomatometer score: 31 percent
Synopsis: Arthur (Hunnam) is a wandering young man unaware of his lineage. His father, the King of England, was killed by his uncle, Vortigern (Law), who then took the throne. It is only after he pulls the Excalibur sword from the stone that Arthur realises his birthright and his destiny.
More about the film: According to Screenrant, Warner Bros. originally planned to make a six-movie shared universe of sequels and spinoffs starting with this reboot of the Arthurian legend.
But, despite having a galaxy of stars, the film bombed at the box office. Deadline calculated that the makers suffered a loss of USD 153.2 million, making King Arthur: Legend of the Sword one of the biggest flops of 2017.
Image credit: Daniel Smith – © 2015 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc., Village Roadshow Films North America Inc. and Ratpac-Dune Entertainment LLC – – U.S., C/IMDb
Release date: 24 May 2019
Cast: Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott, Marwan Kenzari, Will Smith
Tomatometer score: 57 percent
Synopsis: Aladdin (Massoud) is a street urchin with a heart of gold. He falls in love with Princess Jasmine (Scott) of Agrabah. But the evil Grand Vizier (Kenzari), who wants to usurp the kingdom and seeks a magic lamp that can summon a powerful genie (Smith), stands in his way.
More about the film: Aladdin was the first of two Guy Ritchie movies that hit the theatres in 2019. (The other being The Gentlemen). The film received negative reviews from critics, particularly for Ritchie’s direction and poor CGI. But despite its faults, the film ended 2019 as the ninth-highest-grossing movie with worldwide box office earnings of over USD 1 billion.
Produced by Walt Disney Pictures, Aladdin served as the live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1992 animated film of the same name.
Image credit: © Disney Enterprises/IMDb
Release date: 16 December 2011
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Jared Harris, Noomi Rapace, Rachel McAdams
Tomatometer score: 59 percent
Synopsis: In his quest to solve the mysterious death of a crown prince, Sherlock Holmes (Downey Jr.) discovers a trail pointing to a devastating plan by criminal mastermind Professor Moriarty (Harris). With help of his loyal friend Dr. John H. Watson (Law) and a gypsy (Noomi Rapace) he rescues, Sherlock must confront the ‘Napoleon of Crime’ before it is too late.
More about the film: The film serves as a sequel to Ritchie’s Sherlock Holmes (2009). Though bigger in terms of scale than its predecessor, the sequel’s overemphasis on action turned off critics and fans of the iconic fictional detective as well as Downey Jr.
Yet, the high level of interest around the movie and Downey Jr. helped it earn a total worldwide gross of over USD 540 million on a budget of USD 125 million. Ritchie, however, didn’t return to direction for the next four years — the longest gap between any two of his movies.
Image credit: Christopher Raphael – © 2011 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. – – U.S., Canada, Bahamas & Bermuda/IMDb
Release date: 31 October 2008
Cast: Gerard Butler, Tom Wilkinson, Toby Kebbell, Mark Strong, Thandiwe Newton, Idris Elba, Tom Hardy
Tomatometer score: 60 percent
Synopsis: The money involved in a Russian mobster’s crooked land deal draws the attention of an old-school London mobster Lenny Cole (Wilkinson), his presumed dead step-son Johnny (Kebbell), and a minor gang leader named One Two (Butler). And all of them try to outsmart each other.
More about the film: RocknRolla is the first film that Ritchie co-produced. It marked his return to his tried and tested British gangster storytelling. Its decent box office performance and mixed reception from critics helped salvage some of his lost reputation following the terrible performances of Swept Away and Revolver.
Image credit: Alex Bailey – © 2008 Dark Castle Holdings, LLC/IMDb
Release date: 7 May 2021
Cast: Jason Statham, Holt McCallany, Josh Hartnett, Jeffrey Donovan, Scott Eastwood, Andy Garcia
Tomatometer score: 67 percent
Synopsis: A mysterious employee (Statham) of an armoured truck company involved in cash transfer around Los Angeles surprises others by taking down an entire gang of robbers. His action makes his co-workers suspicious of him and they wonder what his true motives really are.
More about the film: Ritchie’s first pandemic-era film marked his fourth collaboration with Statham, who received praise for his performance. Some critics found the film’s story similar to Heat (1995), but appreciated the action scenes and Ritchie’s noir-esque execution of the story.
Image credit: Christopher Raphael – © 2021 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved/IMDb
Release date: 14 August 2015
Cast: Henry Cavill, Alicia Vikander, Elizabeth Debicki, Hugh Grant
Tomatometer score: 68 percent
Synopsis: CIA agent Napoleon Solo (Cavill) joins forces with a KGB operative to prevent a criminal organisation from using nuclear weapons that would place both the US and the Soviet Union at risk.
More about the film: The comedic spy film, which draws inspiration from the MGM television series of the same name that was released in 1964, marked the end of Ritchie’s four-year absence from filmmaking. Made on a budget of USD 75 million, The Man From U.N.C.L.E. bombed at the box office by grossing only USD 107 million.
Critics found it an average film at the time of its release, but it has managed to improve its reputation over the years. In 2021, it became the only Guy Ritchie movie to find a place in Rolling Stone’s list of 50 best action movies of all time.
Image credit: Daniel Smith – © 2013 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc./IMDb
Release date: 25 December 2009
Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Mark Strong, Rachel McAdams
Tomatometer score: 69 percent
Synopsis: A series of brutal murders leads Sherlock Holmes (Downey Jr.) and his partner Dr. John H. Watson (Law) to Lord Blackwood (Mark Strong), a mysterious person who supposedly has occult powers. Blackwood is executed but seemingly rises from the grave, which alerts Sherlock to a conspiracy graver than he imagined.
More about the film: Ritchie carved a fresh image of the iconic detective in the eyes of the audience, adding the trait of an action hero to the character better known for his power of deduction. And it worked well with critics and fans, primarily because of the performance of Downey Jr. as the eccentric detective.
In fact, Downey Jr. was a major theatrical draw for this movie as he was riding high on the success of Iron Man (2008) — the first film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Made on a budget of USD 90 million, Sherlock Holmes became a phenomenal box-office success with a worldwide gross of over USD 500 million. The film was nominated for two Oscars and Downey Jr. won the Golden Globe award for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture – Comedy or Musical.
Image credit: IMDb
Release date: 19 January 2001
Cast: Brad Pitt, Jason Statham, Stephen Graham, Vinnie Jones, Dennis Farina, Alan Ford, Benicio del Toro
Tomatometer score: 74 percent
Synopsis: Turkish (Statham) is an illegal boxing promoter who urges bare-knuckle boxer Mickey (Pitt) to fight for gangster Brick Top (Ford). Things go terribly wrong and there is mayhem all over. Adding to the confusion is another gangster, Frankie Four Fingers (del Toro), who has a priceless stolen diamond that everyone wants to lay their hands on.
More about the film: Snatch is hailed as a cult classic. It is the only Guy Ritchie movie to star Brad Pitt, whose performance, despite his lack of Irish accent, was praised. Interestingly, his character wasn’t even in the original script.
The film did very well at the box office, earning over USD 83 million worldwide on a budget of USD 10 million.
Image credit: Screen Gems – © 2000 – Screen Gems – All Rights Reserved/IMDb
Release date: 24 January 2020
Cast: Matthew McConaughey, Charlie Hunnam, Henry Golding, Hugh Grant, Michelle Dockery, Colin Farrell
Tomatometer score: 75 percent
Synopsis: An American drug lord, Michael ‘Mickey’ Pearson (McConaughey) wants to sell off his profitable marijuana empire in London. All of the underworld and other shady characters try various tricks to steal his domain.
More about the film: The comedy-action film is hailed as one of the best Guy Ritchie movies to watch. Made on a budget of just USD 22 million, the film ended as a commercial success by netting in USD 115 million worldwide. Critics gave positive reviews, praising everything from Ritchie’s direction to the story and performances.
Ritchie is now making a spin-off television series of the film for Netflix. Theo James, Giancarlo Esposito, Kaya Scodelario, Peter Serafinowicz and Vinnie Jones are among those who star in the series.
Image credit: Christopher Raphael/IMDb
Release date: 28 August 1998 (UK)
Cast: Nick Moran, Jason Statham, Jason Flemyng, Dexter Fletcher, Vinnie Jones, Sting, P.H. Moriarty
Tomatometer score: 75 percent
Synopsis: Eddy (Moran) and his three friends have to pay local mobster Hatchet Harry (Moriarty) half a million pound in a week after losing in a poker game. They learn that a gang of robbers, who are their neighbours, are planning a heist. The friends decide to rob the robbers after the latter’s deed, taking the stakes very high.
More about the film: Ritchie made his feature-length film debut with Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels. It also marks the big-screen debut of both Statham and Jones.
The film is universally hailed as Ritchie’s best work to date. It won the Audience Award at the BAFTA in 1999. It earned around USD 28 million at the worldwide box office, which, according to The Numbers, was close to 21 times its production budget.
Image credit: IMDb