Denzel Washington Movies List: Ranked Best To Worst

Man on Fire
R

Man on Fire

(2004)
44
1
As:
Cast
Role:
John W. Creasy
Director:
Tony Scott
Genres:
Drama, Crime, Thriller, Action
Star Cast:
Christopher Walken, Dakota Fanning, Radha Mitchell, Marc Anthony
Plot:

A burnt out ex CIA operative John Creasy finds a new objective in life when he is hired by an industrialist Samuel Ramos to protect his daughter, Pita. A reluctant and uninterested Creasy soon forms a bond with the little girl. So when she is kidnapped, he is enraged and seeks to kill everyone involved in the heinous act.

44
1
Glory
R

Glory

(1989)
35
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Pvt. Trip
Director:
Edward Zwick
Genres:
Drama, War, History, Biography
Star Cast:
Morgan Freeman, Matthew Broderick, Cary Elwes, Jihmi Kennedy
Plot:

The Academy Awards-winning movie depicts the first unit of all African-American soldiers during the Civil War. Col. Robert Gould Shaw leads the ‘54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry’ of all-black soldiers; however, he meets with strong prejudices from both Union Army and the Confederates. Initially assigned to only menial tasks, the regiment earns its place in the battle and achieves glory at Fort Wagner.   

35
2
Training Day
R

Training Day

(2001)
39
6
As:
Cast
Role:
Alonzo
Director:
Antoine Fuqua
Genres:
Drama, Crime, Thriller
Star Cast:
Ethan Hawke, Scott Glenn, Tom Berenger, Harris Yulin
Plot:

Rookie LAPD narcotics officer Jake Hoyt is trained on his first day by veteran detective Alonzo Harris, who has questionable methods for getting the streets of Los Angeles free of drug dealers. Hoyt is faced with several ethical dilemmas as he follows for 24 hours the convoluting concepts of legality, justice and corruption employed by Harris.

39
6
Remember the Titans
PG

Remember the Titans

(2000)
29
3
As:
Cast
Role:
Coach Herman Boone
Director:
Boaz Yakin
Genres:
Sport, Biography, Drama
Star Cast:
Will Patton, Wood Harris, Ryan Hurst, Donald Faison
Plot:

The movie depicts the inspirational story of African-American coach Herman Boone and his assistant coach Bill Yoast. In 1971 USA, an all-white high school is integrated with an all-black school. The two coaches fight racial discrimination and unite the racially divided team of the T. C. Williams High School in Alexandria, Virginia to win the state championship.  

29
3
Philadelphia
PG-13

Philadelphia

(1993)
28
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Joe Miller
Director:
Jonathan Demme
Genres:
Drama
Star Cast:
Tom Hanks, Roberta Maxwell, Buzz Kilman, Karen Finley
Plot:

One of the first mainstream Hollywood films to acknowledge HIV/AIDS, homosexuality, and homophobia, Philadelphia is a gripping tale of a homosexual senior associate at a large corporate law firm who gets fired due to his sexuality, and his fight to get justice. 

28
2
American Gangster
R

American Gangster

(2007)
24
4
As:
Cast
Role:
Frank Lucas
Director:
Ridley Scott
Genres:
Crime, Biography, Thriller, Drama
Star Cast:
Chiwetel Ejiofor, Russell Crowe, Josh Brolin, Lymari Nadal
Plot:

A fictionalized account of the criminal career of gangster Frank Lucas who was notorious for smuggling heroin, American Gangster is a crime film produced by Ridley Scott. A critical and commercial success, the film was nominated for 21 awards.

24
4
Malcolm X
PG-13

Malcolm X

(1992)
23
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Malcolm X
Director:
Spike Lee
Genres:
Romance, Biography, Drama, History
Star Cast:
Angela Bassett, Spike Lee, Delroy Lindo, Albert Hall
23
2
Fallen
R

Fallen

(1998)
37
2
As:
Cast
Role:
John Hobbes
Director:
Gregory Hoblit
Genres:
Mystery, Action, Thriller, Fantasy, Crime, Drama
Star Cast:
James Gandolfini, Embeth Davidtz, Donald Sutherland, John Goodman
37
2
Inside Man
R

Inside Man

(2006)
23
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Detective Keith Frazier
Director:
Spike Lee
Genres:
Thriller, Drama, Crime, Mystery
Star Cast:
Clive Owen, Jodie Foster, Christopher Plummer, Willem Dafoe
Plot:

The plot of the movie revolves around an elaborate bank robbery planned by a perfectionist robber Dalton Russell. He takes hostages and detective Keith Frazier is called upon to take charge of the negotiations. The bank president, concerned about something important, hires his own negotiator. However, Russell and his team are always ahead.

23
2
The Book of Eli
R

The Book of Eli

(2010)
39
4
As:
Cast, Producer
Role:
Eli
Director:
Albert Hughes, Allen Hughes
Genres:
Drama, Action, Thriller, Adventure
Star Cast:
Gary Oldman, Mila Kunis, Ray Stevenson, Jennifer Beals
Plot:

The post-apocalyptic movie centers on Eli, a blind nomadic warrior who is instructed by a voice to deliver the last copy of the New King James Bible to a sanctuary. Traveling across a wasteland, of what was formerly the USA, he demonstrates mythical fighting skills against the warlord Carnegie and his army who wants the book for himself. 

39
4
The Hurricane
R

The Hurricane

(1999)
23
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Rubin Carter
Director:
Norman Jewison
Genres:
Biography, Drama, Sport
Star Cast:
Liev Schreiber, Rod Steiger, Vicellous Shannon, Deborah Kara Unger
23
2
The Equalizer
R

The Equalizer

(2014)
30
2
As:
Cast, Producer
Role:
Robert McCall
Director:
Antoine Fuqua
Genres:
Thriller, Crime, Action
Star Cast:
Marton Csokas, Chloë Grace Moretz, David Harbour, Haley Bennett
Plot:

A former Intelligence agency officer, Robert McCall, leads a quiet life working for a hardware store. However when his friend Alina, a young prostitute working for Russian mafia is brutally beaten by her pimp, McCall refuses to take it quietly. He comes out of retirement to avenge the injustice done to Alina, or anyone who is helpless.

30
2
John Q
PG-13

John Q

(2002)
32
3
As:
Cast
Role:
John Quincy Archibald
Director:
Nick Cassavetes
Genres:
Drama, Thriller, Crime
Star Cast:
Bill Maher, Gabriela Oltean, Kimberly Elise, Ron Annabelle
Plot:

John Quincy Archibald is a factory worker whose son Mike/Michael is diagnosed with enlarged heart for which emergency heart transplant is the only solution. As John’s health insurance doesn’t cover the expensive transplant surgery and with no other means to raise the amount, a desperate John holds the staff and patients of the hospital’s emergency room hostage to save his son’s life.   

32
3
Flight
R

Flight

(2012)
26
4
As:
Cast
Role:
Whip Whitaker
Director:
Robert Zemeckis
Genres:
Thriller, Drama
Star Cast:
John Goodman, Nadine Velazquez, Carter Cabassa, Adam C. Edwards
Plot:

Pilot Whip Whittaker is hailed as a hero for landing his plane with almost no casualties after it suffers a mid-air mechanical failure. A routine investigation after the fact reveals another story, however; that of a man struggling with substance abuse.

26
4
Crimson Tide
R

Crimson Tide

(1995)
26
4
As:
Cast
Role:
Hunter
Director:
Tony Scott
Genres:
Thriller, Action, Drama, War
Star Cast:
George Dzundza, Gene Hackman, Viggo Mortensen, Matt Craven
26
4
Fences
PG-13

Fences

(2016)
26
4
As:
Cast, Producer, Director
Role:
Troy Maxson
Director:
Denzel Washington
Genres:
Drama
Star Cast:
Viola Davis, Stephen Henderson, Jovan Adepo, Russell Hornsby
26
4
Antwone Fisher
PG-13

Antwone Fisher

(2002)
22
3
As:
Cast, Producer, Director
Role:
Dr. Jerome Davenport
Director:
Denzel Washington
Genres:
Biography, Drama
Star Cast:
Derek Luke, Malcolm David Kelley, Cory Hodges, Joy Bryant
22
3
The Bone Collector
R

The Bone Collector

(1999)
31
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Lincoln Rhyme
Director:
Phillip Noyce
Genres:
Drama, Crime, Mystery, Thriller
Star Cast:
Angelina Jolie, Queen Latifah, Michael Rooker, Michael McGlone
Plot:

The Bone Collector is a crime-thriller that revolves around a paraplegic detective and a newly recruited patrol officer, with great forensic skills, who set about solving a series of grisly murders committed by a psychopath who leaves gruesome clues at every crime scene. Starring Denzel Washington and Angelina Jolie, this film has a lot of drama and gory violence too.

31
1
A Soldier's Story
PG

A Soldier's Story

(1984)
12
2
As:
Cast
Director:
Norman Jewison
Genres:
Mystery, Crime, Drama, War
Star Cast:
David Alan Grier, Howard E. Rollins Jr., Adolph Caesar, Art Evans
12
2
Deja Vu
PG-13

Deja Vu

(2006)
27
5
As:
Cast
Role:
Doug Carlin
Director:
Tony Scott
Genres:
Action, Crime, Thriller, Sci-Fi
Star Cast:
Val Kilmer, Paula Patton, Adam Goldberg, Jim Caviezel
Plot:

Deja Vu is an action-thriller that centers around an A.T.F. agent who uses an experimental technology, which can take you back in time, to discover the identity of the culprit responsible for bombing a ferry in New Orleans. Denzel Washington stars as the brilliant agent who becomes obsessed with a particular clue to find the bomber before he strikes again.

27
5
The Magnificent Seven
PG-13

The Magnificent Seven

(2016)
25
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Chisolm
Director:
Antoine Fuqua
Genres:
Western, Adventure, Action
Star Cast:
Chris Pratt, Ethan Hawke, Vincent D'Onofrio, Byung-hun Lee
Plot:

Bartholomew Bogue takes control of the American frontier town Rose Creek and forces its citizens to forced labor. When a group of locals, led by Matthew Cullen stand up to him, he has them killed. Cullen’s widow then recruits U.S. Marshal Sam Chisholm who forms a group of seven fighters to take on Bogue and his army. 

25
1
Cry Freedom
PG

Cry Freedom

(1987)
14
2
As:
Cast
Director:
Richard Attenborough
Genres:
History, Biography, Drama
Star Cast:
Josette Simon, Wabei Siyolwe, John Matshikiza, Juanita Waterman
14
2
Unstoppable
PG-13

Unstoppable

(2010)
26
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Frank
Director:
Tony Scott
Genres:
Thriller, Action
Star Cast:
Rosario Dawson, Chris Pine, Kevin Dunn, Ethan Suplee
Plot:

Based on true events, a massive locomotive carrying highly toxic and flammable phenol becomes unstoppable when it becomes unmanned due to human carelessness. A major disaster is waiting to happen unless veteran engineer Frank Barnes and young conductor Will Colson who are pursuing the running train on another engine manage to catch it and stop it.  

26
2
The Great Debaters
PG-13

The Great Debaters

(2007)
12
4
As:
Cast, Director
Role:
Melvin B. Tolson
Director:
Denzel Washington
Genres:
Drama, Romance, Biography
Star Cast:
Nate Parker, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Denzel Whitaker, Jermaine Williams
12
4
Much Ado About Nothing
PG-13

Much Ado About Nothing

(1993)
12
2
As:
Cast
Director:
Kenneth Branagh
Genres:
Comedy, Romance, Drama
Star Cast:
Imelda Staunton, Emma Thompson, Michael Keaton, Keanu Reeves
12
2
The Pelican Brief
PG-13

The Pelican Brief

(1993)
25
0
As:
Cast
Role:
Gray Grantham
Director:
Alan J. Pakula
Genres:
Crime, Drama, Mystery, Thriller
Star Cast:
Sam Shepard, Julia Roberts, Tony Goldwyn, Cynthia Nixon
25
0
The Equalizer 2
R

The Equalizer 2

(2018)
19
2
As:
Cast, Producer
Role:
Robert McCall
Director:
Antoine Fuqua
Genres:
Action, Crime, Thriller
Star Cast:
Bill Pullman, Orson Bean, Melissa Leo, Sakina Jaffrey
19
2
Safe House
R

Safe House

(2012)
18
3
As:
Cast, Producer
Role:
Tobin Frost
Director:
Daniel Espinosa
Genres:
Thriller, Action, Crime, Mystery
Star Cast:
Ryan Reynolds, Vera Farmiga, Brendan Gleeson, Sam Shepard
Plot:

After criminal Tobin Frost acquires a data storage device for an MI6 agent, he is attacked by mercenaries. He surrenders to the American consulate, who place him in a safe house under rookie agent Matt Weston. The two men then try to survive assassins and the CIA while uncovering the truth. 

18
3
The Manchurian Candidate
R

The Manchurian Candidate

(2004)
19
2
As:
Cast
Director:
Jonathan Demme
Genres:
Sci-Fi, Thriller, Mystery, Drama
Star Cast:
Jon Voight, Sidney Lumet, Pablo Schreiber, Jeffrey Wright
19
2
Out of Time
R

Out of Time

(2003)
18
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Matt Lee Whitlock
Director:
Carl Franklin
Genres:
Thriller, Action, Mystery, Crime, Drama
Star Cast:
Dean Cain, John Billingsley, Sanaa Lathan, Eva Mendes
18
1
He Got Game
R

He Got Game

(1998)
11
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Jake Shuttlesworth
Director:
Spike Lee
Genres:
Sport, Drama
Star Cast:
Rosario Dawson, Milla Jovovich, Hill Harper, Ray Allen
11
2
Devil in a Blue Dress
R

Devil in a Blue Dress

(1995)
14
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Easy Rawlins
Director:
Carl Franklin
Genres:
Drama, Mystery, Crime, Thriller
Star Cast:
Tom Sizemore, Don Cheadle, Jennifer Beals, Maury Chaykin
14
2
2 Guns
R

2 Guns

(2013)
14
3
As:
Cast
Role:
Bobby
Director:
Baltasar Kormákur
Genres:
Action, Thriller, Comedy, Crime
Star Cast:
Mark Wahlberg, Paula Patton, Edward James Olmos, Bill Paxton
Plot:

DEA agent Bobby Trench, hoping to implicate his target, decides to stay undercover to help Michael Stigman in a bank robbery, but unbeknownst to Trench, Stigman is an undercover naval intelligence officer with instructions to kill him. After both are disavowed by their respective organizations, they must work together against a ruthless Mexican drug lord while avoiding arrest.

14
3
Courage Under Fire
R

Courage Under Fire

(1996)
14
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Nat Serling
Director:
Edward Zwick
Genres:
War, Drama, Thriller, Mystery, Action
Star Cast:
Meg Ryan, Lou Diamond Phillips, Michael Moriarty, Matt Damon
14
1
The Taking of Pelham 123
R

The Taking of Pelham 123

(2009)
16
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Walter Garber
Director:
Tony Scott
Genres:
Crime, Action, Thriller
Star Cast:
John Travolta, Luis Guzmán, Victor Gojcaj, Robert Vataj
Plot:

Passengers of a New York subway train are pulled into a nightmare when Dennis Ryder Ford and his associates hijack their train. Ryder demands a ransom and will only talk to Walter Garber, a dispatcher being investigated on bribery charges. Garber must negotiate, find a way to save the people, and stop Ryder. 

16
2
Mo' Better Blues
R

Mo' Better Blues

(1990)
11
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Bleek Gilliam
Director:
Spike Lee
Genres:
Romance, Drama, Music
Star Cast:
Samuel L. Jackson, Wesley Snipes, Giancarlo Esposito, Spike Lee
11
2
Ricochet
R

Ricochet

(1991)
16
0
As:
Cast
Role:
Nick Styles
Director:
Russell Mulcahy
Genres:
Action, Thriller, Crime, Drama
Star Cast:
Lindsay Wagner, John Lithgow, Ice-T, Kevin Pollak
16
0
Mississippi Masala
R

Mississippi Masala

(1991)
8
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Demetrius Williams
Director:
Mira Nair
Genres:
Romance, Drama
Star Cast:
Charles S. Dutton, Sarita Choudhury, Roshan Seth, Sharmila Tagore
8
2
The Siege
R

The Siege

(1998)
12
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Anthony Hubbard
Director:
Edward Zwick
Genres:
Action, Thriller
Star Cast:
Tony Shalhoub, Bruce Willis, Annette Bening, Sami Bouajila
12
1
The Mighty Quinn
R

The Mighty Quinn

(1989)
14
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Xavier Quinn
Director:
Carl Schenkel
Genres:
Drama, Crime, Action, Thriller, Mystery
Star Cast:
Mimi Rogers, M. Emmet Walsh, James Fox, Sheryl Lee Ralph
14
2
Carbon Copy
PG

Carbon Copy

(1981)
11
3
As:
Cast
Role:
Roger Porter
Director:
Michael Schultz
Genres:
Drama, Comedy
Star Cast:
George Segal, Susan Saint James, Dick Martin, Jack Warden
11
3
The Preacher's Wife
PG

The Preacher's Wife

(1996)
19
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Dudley
Director:
Penny Marshall
Genres:
Drama, Fantasy, Romance, Comedy
Star Cast:
Jenifer Lewis, Courtney B. Vance, Gregory Hines, Whitney Houston
19
2
Heart Condition
R

Heart Condition

(1990)
11
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Napoleon Stone
Director:
James D. Parriott
Genres:
Crime, Comedy, Fantasy, Drama
Star Cast:
Bob Hoskins, Chloe Webb, Roger E. Mosley, Ja'net DuBois
11
1
Power
R

Power

(1986)
10
2
As:
Cast
Role:
Arnold Billings
Director:
Sidney Lumet
Genres:
Drama
Star Cast:
Gene Hackman, Richard Gere, Julie Christie, Kate Capshaw
10
2
For Queen & Country
R

For Queen & Country

(1988)
8
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Reuben James
Director:
Martin Stellman
Genres:
Crime, Drama, Thriller
Star Cast:
Graham McTavish, Dorian Healy, Sean Chapman, Geff Francis
8
1
Virtuosity
R

Virtuosity

(1995)
9
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Lt. Parker Barnes
Director:
Brett Leonard
Genres:
Sci-Fi, Action, Thriller, Crime
Star Cast:
Kelly Lynch, Russell Crowe, Stephen Spinella, William Forsythe
9
1
Roman J. Israel, Esq.
PG-13

Roman J. Israel, Esq.

(2017)
15
1
As:
Cast
Role:
Roman J. Israel
Director:
Dan Gilroy
Genres:
Crime, Drama
Star Cast:
Colin Farrell, Carmen Ejogo, Shelley Hennig, Lynda Gravatt
15
1
Hank Aaron: Chasing the Dream

Hank Aaron: Chasing the Dream

(1995)
9
1
As:
Producer
Director:
Michael Tollin
Genres:
Documentary, Sport, Biography
Star Cast:
Harry Belafonte, Hank Aaron, Dusty Baker, Yogi Berra, Barry Bonds
9
1

TV Movie(s)

Flesh & Blood

Flesh & Blood

(1979)
7
2
As:
Cast
Director:
Jud Taylor
Genres:
Drama
Star Cast:
Pat Corley, John Cassavetes, Tom Berenger, Luca Bercovici
7
2
Wilma

Wilma

(1977)
7
2
As:
Cast
Role:
age 18 Robert Eldridge
Director:
Bud Greenspan
Genres:
Biography, Sport, Drama
Star Cast:
Shirley Jo Finney, Cicely Tyson, Jason Bernard, Joe Seneca
7
2
License to Kill

License to Kill

(1984)
14
0
As:
Cast
Director:
Jud Taylor
Genres:
Drama, Thriller
Star Cast:
Penny Fuller, Ari Meyers, Donald Moffat, Millie Perkins
14
0
Half Past Autumn: The Life and Works of Gordon Parks

Half Past Autumn: The Life and Works of Gordon Parks

(2000)
9
1
As:
Producer
Director:
Craig Laurence Rice
Genres:
Documentary, Biography
Star Cast:
Ron O'Neal, Avery Brooks, Roger E. Mosley, Flavio da Silva, Nelson George
9
1
The George McKenna Story

The George McKenna Story

(1986)
7
3
As:
Cast
Role:
George McKenna
Director:
Eric Laneuville
Genres:
Drama, Biography
Star Cast:
Lynn Whitfield, Debra Artis, Edna Auguillard, Billy Jaye Banner
7
3
Mother Goose: A Rappin' and Rhymin' Special

Mother Goose: A Rappin' and Rhymin' Special

(1997)
6
0
As:
Cast
Role:
Humpty Dumpty / The Crooked Man
Genres:
Music, Comedy
Star Cast:
Whoopi Goldberg, Kathie Lee Gifford, Regis Philbin, Jimmy Smits
6
0

Animation(s)

Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child
TV-Y

Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child (1995)

As:
Cast
Director:
Vincent Waller, Anthony Bell, Bruce W. Smith, Ed Bell
Genres:
Animation, Adventure, Fantasy
Star Cast:
Dave Chappelle, James Earl Jones, Robert Guillaume, Rosie Perez

TV Shows and Videos

St. Elsewhere
TV-PG

St. Elsewhere (1982)

As:
Cast
Role:
Dr. Philip Chandler
Director:
Linda Day, Victor Lobl, Bethany Rooney, Leo Penn, Thomas Carter
Genres:
Drama
Star Cast:
Helen Hunt, Ray Liotta, Kathy Bates, Alan Arkin
Great Performances

Great Performances (1971)

As:
Cast
Director:
Brian Large, David Horn, Kirk Browning, Gary Halvorson, Matthew Diamond
Genres:
Romance, Music, Drama, Biography
Star Cast:
Anthony Hopkins, Julie Andrews, Walter Cronkite, Renée Fleming, Plácido Domingo
Tyrese Gibson: Shame

Tyrese Gibson: Shame (2015)

As:
Producer
Director:
Paul Hunter
Genres:
Music, Short
Star Cast:
Jamie Ann Burke, Brely Evans, Tyrese Gibson, Jennifer Hudson
Grey's Anatomy
TV-14

Grey's Anatomy (2005)

As:
Director
Director:
Denzel Washington, Rob Corn, Chandra Wilson, Kevin McKidd, Debbie Allen
Genres:
Romance, Drama
Star Cast:
Ellen Pompeo, Justin Chambers, Chandra Wilson, James Pickens Jr., Patrick Dempsey
Coriolanus

Coriolanus (1979)

As:
Cast
Director:
Wilford Leach
Genres:
Drama, History
Star Cast:
Morgan Freeman, Frank Adu, Bimbo, Thomas Martell Brimm

Denzel Washington Awards

Academy Awards
Training Day Best Actor in a Leading Role 2002
Glory Best Actor in a Supporting Role 1990
Golden Globe Awards
The Hurricane Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Drama 2000
Glory Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Motion Picture 1990
MTV Movie & TV Awards
Training Day Best Villain 2002
Malcolm X Best Male Performance 1993