When pro-wrestler Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson made his big screen debut 17 years ago, the world was a very different place. Facebook hadn’t been invented, we still used CDs and the iPhone was but a twinkle in Steve Jobs’ eye. Fast-forward to 2018, and everyone’s favourite muscle-bound megastar is arguably the busiest actor in Hollywood. He’s so famous that he doesn’t even need to live there anymore. Instead, execs will fly out to his palace in Miami to meet with him. What a dude.
His latest blockbuster, Rampage, hits cinemas on Thursday and is loosely based on the classic 1980s video game of the same name. It’s a rip-roaring science fiction monster mash-up that’ll blow your mind. To get you in the proper mood, here are The Rock’s top five movies of all time. Try and watch them all before you check out Rampage.
5. The Scorpion King (2002)
Well we couldn’t leave this out, could we? One of two early movies that confirmed The Rock’s acting credentials (the other being 2001’s The Mummy Returns), The Scorpion King is a coming-of-age classic for action-obsessed millennials. Directed by Chuck Russell (The Mask, Eraser), this historic-fantasy romp forms the third part of the original Mummy series from the early 2000s. It’s a hyperactive fight-fest that dances on the lighter side of popcorn silliness. Dig in.
4. Pain & Gain (2013)
There ain’t none without the other, or so the old saying goes. But director Michael Bay’s tenth feature Pain & Gain packs in the thrills for very little downside. The Rock is, of course, excellent in perhaps his best performance ever. He plays gym-pumped knucklehead Paul Doyle with just the right amount of pathos in a high-stakes crime tale featuring Mark Wahlberg and Anthony Mackie. We even feel sorry for him and his fellow reprobates when they royally balls up their own criminal masterplan. A must-watch in the DJ canon.
3. Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle (2017)
It’s a brave person indeed who puts his name to a Robin Williams remake. But that’s what Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan and Jack Black did late last year with Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle. Luckily, it came off alright and the monster-infested jungle proved the perfect setting for yet another Rock-shaped box-office blowout. To date, JWTTJ has grossed just shy of a billion dollars worldwide and is one of the biggest releases of the decade. Still no sign of that Guns N’ Roses cameo though…
2. Moana (2016)
If The Rock: The Musical sounds like it might float your boat, then high seas cartoon caper Moana is right up your gangplank. From his dancing tattoos to the totally tuneful vocals, once-mighty demigod Maui is a complete hoot in a family-friendly first for Dwayne Johnson. So strap on your lifejacket and get ready to jump into this beautiful world of banger-based adventure. If you’re not humming the melody to ‘Your Welcome’ by the time credits roll we’ll eat our grass skirt.
1. Fast & Furious 7 (2015)
Petrolheads will (mostly) agree that this is the best instalment of the long-running Fast & Furious franchise. Stuffed with tire-skidding and full of fiery one-liners, Furious 7 also found time to tug on the heartstrings with a tragic death scene. Dwayne Johnson’s iconic speed demon Hobbs was front and centre throughout as the gang hit the road for their latest NOS-fuelled adventure. Put it in gear, Dwayne. We’re ready for another spin in this one.
Rampage is released in UK cinemas April 12