10 Best “Vs” Movies Of All Time, Ranked

Summary

  • “VS” movies range in genres and give clear expectations but AVP: Alien vs. Predator missed the mark with poor story and lighting.
  • Freddy vs. Jason, a fun horror film, revived franchises while maintaining a humorous tone and entertaining action.
  • Man vs. Bee, a physical comedy, is a hilarious romp starring Rowan Atkinson, offering a fun family experience with slapstick humor.



When a movie has “vs” in the title, it’s guaranteed to be an exciting and action-packed story. One of the more obscure niches of film, “vs” movies generally give a clear idea of what to expect before the movie begins. These stories can also range between a huge variety of genres, despite the title suggesting a clear battle between two characters, as it can represent an obvious brawl, or be more subtle in what the title is actually suggesting.

With horror/action movies like AVP: Alien vs. Predator, the title references the blending of two franchises, and shows that these monsters will be pitted against each other. However, a comedy movie like Man vs. Bee is slightly more ambiguous as both components are immediately recognizable, but neither is an existing franchise. Either way, the title suggests strongly that two sides will be at odds, and the story will revolve around a rivalry, or conflict.



10 AVP: Alien vs. Predator

Prime Video and Star Plus

In 2004, two of the most popular horror/action franchises finally came together to create something that should have been a celebration of both. However, the resulting movie was a far cry from the best quality that either franchise had produced previously. While the movie attempted to combine two incredible franchises with generally similar concepts about an alien monster that could easily hunt down and tear apart the human race, the movie failed to tell a meaningful story, or give either monster a real chance to shine.


Further adding to how grim the film was, the movie has famously been critiqued for its terrible lighting, which resulted in several important scenes appearing in near total darkness (via SlashFilm). This evidently left audiences feeling as though they had missed pivotal moments in the story, and what remained was lacking to the point that the film received almost exclusively negative reviews. Even judging the movie by a purely entertaining and fun standard, this movie fails to meet the mark where many other “vs.” movies blend their subjects together in perfect harmony.

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9 Freddy vs. Jason

Amazon Prime and Apple TV


Freddy vs. Jason

The rise of Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees in the ‘80s made them two of horror’s most iconic villains, and in 2003 after years in development hell, the pair finally faced off. In order to return to power, Freddy (Robert Englund) needs people to be scared of him again. To make this happen, Freddy resurrects Jason (Ken Kirzinger) and tricks him into going on a killing spree around Springfield. Things don’t go according to plan when Lori (Monica Keena) and her friends fight back, which results in Freddy and Jason duking it out for supremacy.

Director
Ronny Yu

Release Date
August 15, 2003

Cast
Robert Englund , Ken Kirzinger , Monica Keena , Jason Ritter , Kelly Rowland , Chris Marquette

Runtime
97 minutes

The year prior, another two horror franchises were given a long anticipated “vs” movie in Freddy vs. Jason. The leading monsters from The Nightmare on Elm Street and Friday the 13th became the center of an all-out brawl which was meant to jump-start a horror crossover franchise which would go on to include several other iconic horror legends. Instead, the film became the headstone for both series ahead of the eventual reboots that would again try to revive their respective franchises.


However, unlike Alien vs. Predator, Freddy vs, Jason is a fun horror film that became a guilty pleasure for many. They are by no means the strongest entries in either franchise, but the action and horror that is featured is done to a high standard. The supernatural creatures and their showdown is offered up with a convincing story, and overall, it’s fun. For many of the latter films in each franchise, that was the best that could be hoped for after the original story was beaten and pruned for every possible movie and sequel that could be gleaned from them.

8 Monsters vs. Aliens

Amazon Prime and Apple TV

Monsters vs. Aliens

Monsters vs. Aliens is a sci-fi animation starring Reese Witherspoon as the voice of Susan Murphy. After being struck by a giant meteorite, Susan is turned into a giant and recruited by the US government to stop an alien from invading Earth. Aside from Witherspoon, Monsters vs. Aliens includes a huge voice cast, including Rainn Wilson, Stephen Colbert, Seth Rogen, and Hugh Laurie, to name a few.

Director
Rob Letterman

Release Date
March 27, 2009

Runtime
102minutes


In 2009, this concept of a monstrous showdown was toned down in its horror, and made into something suitable for the whole family with Monsters vs. Aliens. The animated movie is primarily a comedy, with a fun premise about a group of genetically modified monsters, who are the last line of defense for Earth against invading aliens. The premise is simple, and the animation from DreamWorks is gorgeous throughout the film, adding up to a fun family film.

There are many other entries that managed to exceed the overall quality and fun.


The movie did not reach the same heights of fun or depths of emotion as some other animated family films, but it did manage to maintain an exciting and gripping story throughout the entire runtime. With this focus on making something that felt like an adventure, and a “vs.” movie that was suitable for everyone to watch, the film succeeded. However, there are many other entries that managed to exceed the overall quality and fun that is featured in Monsters vs. Aliens.

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7 Eagle vs Shark

Apple TV, ´Prime Video, Google Play Movies, YouTube, Vudu and Microsoft Store


Eagle vs Shark is a romantic comedy film released in 2007, written and directed by the talented Taika Waititi before his career took off. The film is an independent New Zealand production, starring Jemaine Clement, who is one half of the comedy duo, Flight of the Conchords. The story is an absurdist comedy which has a similar tone and style to films like Napoleon Dynamite, and a unique visual style that splices together live-action and frequently used claymation scenes that follow the film’s narrative.

In general, the movie is funny, and the style is distinct enough to make it a quality story in its own right without trying to compete with anything else in a similar category or niche. The comedy stylings of Waititi are clearly visible even in this early work, and the cast deliver performances that compliment the movie with a level of awkwardness and shyness that is very fitting. The movie may not resonate with everyone, but it is a great entry with a title that references a single scene in the film, positioning two hopeless romantics at odds.


6 Man vs. Bee

Netflix

Man vs. Bee is another comedy entry, but this time starring the wonderful physical comedian, Rowan Atkinson, who became famous for his role as the silent and clumsy Mr. Bean. The 2022 movie was made for Netflix, and sees Atkinson return to his roots in a film that relies more on his innovations and facial expressions than any dialogue. When Trevor (Atkinson) is hired to house sit, he takes his role extremely seriously.


However, despite his intentions to do his absolute best at caring for the home, one small bee causes a chain reaction of unfortunate events that sees the house dissolve into madness. Atkinson makes the film, and his wonderful humor and expressive features make this into an entertaining and hilarious romp that is fun for all the family. The film uses its title to clearly position the two parties at odds, and while it seems innocuous and like a simple fight with a predetermined outcome, things easily get out of hand.

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5 Godzilla vs. Kong

Max, Prime Video and Apple TV

Godzilla vs. Kong

Director
Adam Wingard

Release Date
March 31, 2021


Godzilla and Kong are two of the most famous Kaiju creatures of all time, and both have inspired dozens of films in the US and in Japan, where the concept was first made popular in 1954. In 2021, with the aid of special effects and a healthy budget, Hollywood created Godzilla vs. Kong, pitting the two incredibly popular creatures at odds in an all-out brawl.

The film does a great job establishing the rivalry between the world’s most famous monsters, and the visual effects are suitably matched, elevating the story from a fun idea, to an incredible smash hit. While there are clear areas where the story could have been improved, or performances from the cast were not always up to par, the film does exactly what it sets out to do, and pits monument-sized monsters against each other. The story also does a decent amount to establish a preexisting relationship between the titular creatures.


4 Tucker & Dale vs. Evil

Apple TV, Amazon Video, Vudu, Redbox and FlixFling

Tucker & Dale vs. Evil

Tucker & Dale vs. Evil is a 2010 horror/comedy film starring Tyler Labine and Alan Tudyk. Labine and Tudyk play a dynamic hillbilly duo that is mistaken for killers when college students around them continue to accidentally kill themselves in gruesome ways. Tucker & Dale vs. Evil marks director Eli Craig’s feature-length directorial debut.

Director
Eli Craig

Release Date
September 30, 2011

Cast
Tyler Labine , Katrina Bowden , Alan Tudyk , Chelan Simmons , Jesse Moss

Runtime
89 minutes

Tyler Labine and Alan Tudyk appear as the titular hillbillies that are central to the story in Tucker & Dale vs. Evil. In a series of confused events, the pair purchase a cabin in some secluded woods, and over the course of the movie, they become murder suspects with a growing pile of bodies attributed to them. This dark comedy is full of twists and turns, and the leading cast elevate it from a silly spectacle to something that becomes a genuine and clever story about romance, deception, and bloodshed.


The film is framed as a horror, with many scenes being pulled straight from the popular slashers of the 80s, but the movie subverts expectations throughout. The clever parody aspect adds to the films overall success and quality. The comedy is also brilliant and twisted in a way that perfectly adds up to a very different, but altogether outstanding movie.

3 Scott Pilgrim vs. The World

Netflix, Prime Video, Star Plus and Apple TV

Scott Pilgrim vs the World Ramona and Scott sitting next to each other awkardly on the bus

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

Based on Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series of graphic novels, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World follows the titular slacker musician (Michael Cera) as he strives to earn a record deal by winning the Battle of the Bands organized by music mogul Gideon Graves (Jason Schwartzman). After meeting and falling in love with Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), Scott learns that he must also defeat her seven evil exes. Chris Evans, Aubrey Plaza, Brandon Routh, Kieran Culkin, Anna Kendrick, and Brie Larson round out the film’s star-studded and quirky ensemble. 

Release Date
August 12, 2010

Cast
Michael Cera , Alison Pill , Mark Webber , Johnny Simmons , Ellen Wong , Kieran Culkin

Runtime
113 minutes


Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is based on a series of graphic novels where the lead, Scott (Michael Cera), must face a series of challenges and fight for the love of his life, Ramona Flowers. The film is filled with a brilliant ensemble cast of talented individuals, and incredible original music. However, the strength of the film really lies in the elaborate plot which sees the hero fight back seven evil exes in order to date Ramona.

This is one of the best made and edited films on this list.

The film is also beautifully stylized with quirky animations which evoke a classic video game feel throughout, and fast cuts between scenes to maintain the audiences’ attention. This is one of the best made and edited films on this list, with a brilliant cast, an entertaining and action-packed story, and constant twists and turns in each new scene. While the speed of the pacing will not suit everyone, the quality of the production remains a league above most other “vs” films.


2 The Mitchells vs. The Machines

Netflix, Prime Video and Apple TV

The Mitchells vs. the Machines

The Mitchells vs. The Machines is an animated action-comedy that sees creative outsider Katie Mitchell  as she is accepted into the film school of her dreams and is eager to leave home and find “her people.” However, when her nature-loving dad insists on having the whole family drive her to school and bond during one last family road trip, the family suddenly finds itself in the middle of the robot apocalypse. Katie and her father will need to find common ground to stand a chance against the armies of smartphones, fridges, and whatever other sentient machines are out to capture humanity.

Director
Mike Rianda

Release Date
April 30, 2021

Cast
Eric Andre , Maya Rudolph , Abbi Jacobson , Beck Bennett , Mike Rianda , Fred Armisen , Conan O’Brien , Olivia Colman , Danny McBride , Sasheer Zamata , Charlyne Yi

Runtime
117 minutes

The Mitchells vs. the Machines is another animated family film, but this Netflix original film managed to shatter records to become the platform’s most viewed animated film upon its release (via Deadline). The film is one of the best family films produced by Netflix with a plot and story that appeals to both kids and adults, rather than simply being tolerated by the adults who sit down to watch the movie with their kids. From Mitchell vs. the Machines cast of talented comedy actors voicing the characters, to the beautiful animation, the movie is incredibly well-made.


The story is outrageously funny, with wonderful messages about being creative, avoiding self-doubt, and the positive outcomes that can be had from a family working together. The story also weaves in representation in a way that is clear and intentional, without making the story focus on those elements, but simply treating them as a normal way of life. These elements combined make a truly spectacular story that has something for everyone.

1 Kramer vs. Kramer

YouTube, Prime Video and Apple TV


The oldest film on this list, and also the undisputed best entry, is the 1979 movie, Kramer vs. Kramer. The film is based on a 1977 novel by the same name which was written by Avery Corman. The film received widespread critical acclaim, being nominated for nine separate Oscars, and taking home five wins including for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress. As a result, the legal drama about a couple going through a rocky divorce is one of the best technical and emotional films ever made.

While the film is also a major contrast to many of the other movies featured on this list, it remains an outstanding representation of what is possible in a “vs” movie. Starring Dustin Hoffman, and Meryl Streep, who both won Oscars for their parts, Kramer vs. Kramer is in another league of film. And to this day, it remains the best “vs” movie ever made.