All 10 David Fincher Movies Ranked

10 best David Fincher movies

All 10 David Fincher movies ranked

Is there another director who has so expertly nailed a genre as David Fincher? The man has proven himself over and over to be the expert of suspense and drama, shooting all of his movies through a dark and seedy lens with a distinct color palette that screams his name loud and proud. Whether he’s telling his version of a true story or creating something completely his own, Fincher is one of the strongest and most important voices in narrative film today.

1. The Social Network

10 best David Fincher movies

Thanks in part to a script from Aaron Sorkin, Fincher’s The Social Network is his strongest and most expertly-made film to date. It does an incredible job of painting Mark Zuckerberg as a villain long before Facebook was ever involved in the 2016 election. Fincher’s movie showed us Zuckerberg’s true colors in a way that wasn’t seen again until Zuckerberg was put on trial in front of the Senate in 2018. Not to mention, Jesse Eisenberg, Andrew Garfield, and Justin Timberlake all give incredible performances. It’s Fincher at his absolute best.

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2. Zodiac

10 best David Fincher movies

Based on the true story of the Zodiac Killer, Fincher’s film takes viewers inside the mind of a cartoonist-turned-amateur detective hell-bent on finding out who’s responsible for the killing spree that stretched from the 60s into the 70s. Jake Gyllenhaal is certainly front-and-center throughout the film, but Robert Downey Jr. and Mark Ruffalo also play important parts in the story. It’s a tense and exciting part of California’s history, and it’s the second best entry in Fincher’s filmography.

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3. Gone Girl

10 best David Fincher movies

Most recently, Fincher gifted audiences with the controversial and buzzworthy feature film adaptation of Gillian Flynn’s novel Gone Girl. It’s a creepy, uncomfortable, abrasive story about the dark turns that relationships can take. Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike round out a great cast of sinister characters. It easily earns the bronze medal.

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4. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

10 best David Fincher movies

Based on the Swedish book and movie of the same name, Fincher’s adaptation of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo delighted audiences and critics alike (and fans of the original materials, as well). While the series never got to conclude the way Fincher would’ve liked, Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara help create a bleak and gritty thriller as cold as ice. Fincher should be proud of this one.

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5. Fight Club

10 best David Fincher movies

Fincher clearly likes to put his own spin on best-selling novels — 1999’s Fight Club is no exception. Based on the graphic novel of the same name, Fincher’s adaptation is one of the rare instances where the movie is better than the book. Brad Pitt and Edward Norton paint the perfect picture of an insomniac’s slow descent into madness as he becomes involved in an out-of-control underground fight club. The movie is a violent, mind-bending, and admittedly slightly pretentious look at toxic masculinity, but hey, it’s a worthy addition to Fincher’s list of work. Maybe it would’ve placed higher on the list when it came out, but for now it belongs right in the middle.

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6. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

10 best David Fincher movies

Starring frequent Fincher collaborator Brad Pitt as the titular Benjamin Button, this movie is one of the most heartfelt things we’ve seen from the director so far. It’s compelling and riveting, clocking in at almost three hours, as it follows Benjamin from birth to death (or death to birth — Benjamin Button ages backward, after all) through all the ups and downs of his life. Instead of his standard cold, blue color palette, this one looks more yellow, a warmer, more upbeat color. The film has its weaknesses, but it’s by no means a bad movie. Even a lesser Fincher film is better than most other dramas.

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7. Panic Room

10 best David Fincher movies

What an exhausting movie Panic Room is. As a mother and daughter move into their new home, they discover a panic room that comes in handy when robbers break in. It’s smart and tense and scary, and Fincher helms it all like an expert. This film certainly could’ve been better, but there’s nothing too substantial that hinders from its greatness. It’s a bunch of little things that cause this movie to wear thin.

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8. Se7en

10 best David Fincher movies

Featuring one of the most famous twists of 20th-century cinema, Se7en is a murder-mystery of biblical proportions. As a killer picks off his victims motivated by the seven deadly sins, Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman do their best to track him down. It’s a little slow, to be honest, but it gets the job done. The movie is seedy and gloomy and horrific, and Fincher’s style is as fresh as ever.

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9. The Game

10 best David Fincher movies

Did you see Game Night? Then you’ve seen The Game. It’s a real puzzle of a film, following a man as he tries to figure out if the bad things that keep happening to him are real or all part of some bigger, more elaborate scheme. Michael Douglas gives a spectacular performance, bringing a much-needed edge to a script that might’ve felt predictable with any other actor. The movie’s premise is a little absurd, and some viewers might not be able to suspend their belief enough to enjoy this one.

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10. Alien3

10 best David Fincher movies

Largely considered by many to be one of the worst Alien movies, Fincher’s take on the series is actually quite good when watching the director’s cut (found on most home releases of the film). For whatever reason, the version released in theaters is nowhere near as good as this version approved by Fincher himself. It’s still the weakest of his ten films, but watching his director’s cut is worth it for any Fincher (or Alien) fanatic.

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Weekend: Aug. 29, 2019, Sep. 1, 2019

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