My Top Disaster Movies

For my article “Disaster Narratives by Design: Is Japan Different?” I studied 38 English-language disaster movies from 1978 to 2018 and a further 22 Japanese-language disaster movies. Since the article was published, I have seen a few more disaster movies. All of these I have written separate blog posts about. What I haven’t done until now on this site is to rank them. This is what this post is. All of this comes with the caveat that I am by no means suggesting that my score is in anyway correct – but if you have similar tastes to me, it may provide some indication of what films to watch (or avoid). For comparison, most things I watch tend to get ratings of 6, 7, or 8. Also be aware that I sometimes change scores for things on IMDb as my tastes change.

My rating on IMDbMovie/Dramatization
9Kuroi Ame (Black Rain)
Shizumanu Taiyō (The Unbroken/The Sun Which Doesn’t Set) (2016)
Kuraimāzu Hai (Climber’s High) (2008)
8Fukushima 50
Hiroshima (Hiroshima)
Deepwater Horizon
Shizumanu Taiyō (The Unbroken/The Sun Which Doesn’t Set) (2009)
The Impossible
Kuraimāzu Hai (Climber’s High) (2005)
Special Bulletin
The Day After Tomorrow
Mari to Koinu no Monogatari (A Tale of Mari and Three Puppies)
Deep Impact
7Doragon Heddo (Dragon Head)
St. Helens
The Perfect Storm
Blackout Effect (aka: 747)
One-no-Kanata-ni (Inseparable Souls: Fathers, Sons, and The Crash of JAL123/Beyond the Ridge)
The Day After
United 93
Flight 93
Fukkatsu no Hi (Virus/Day of Resurrection)
Crash Landing: The Rescue of Flight 232 (aka A Thousand Heroes)
Nihon Chinbotsu (Japan Sinks) (2006)
We are Marshall
6Nihon Chinbotsu (2020)
Crash: Mystery of Flight 1501 (aka Aftermath)
World Trade Center
Into the Storm
Itai: Asu-e no Tōkakan (Reunion/Corpses: 10 Days to Tomorrow)
252 Seizonsha Ari (252: There Are Survivors)
The Last Message: Umizaru (Sea Monkeys)
Jishin Rettō (Megaforce 7.9/Earthquake Archipelago)
Kansen Rettō (Pandemic/Infection Archipelago)
Nosutoradamusu no Daiyogen (Prophecies of Nostradamus)
Flight 90: Disaster on the Potomac
Dante’s Peak
Crash: The Crash of Flight 401
Sekai Daisensō (The Last War)
5Rokku: Wanko no Shima (Rock – Dog’s Island)
Kibō-no-Kuni (Land of Hope)
Shuto Shōshitsu (Tokyo Blackout/Disappearance of the Capital)
The Chain Reaction
Ground Control
Nihon Chinbotsu (Japan Sinks) (1973)
San Andreas
Hard Rain
4The Core
The Hurricane Heist
3When Time Ran Out…

See also my book Dealing With Disaster in Japan: Responses to the Flight JL123 Crash and my post Narratives on the World’s Worst Plane Crash: Flight JL123 in Print and on Screen (note that these were written prior to the release of some narratives about the crash which are discussed in the IJMED article).

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