ByDavid Bronstein, writer at
Life is but a movie
David Bronstein

Arnold or Arnie has ruled the screen and box office for 4 decades and has starred in some of the most iconic action and sci fi movies of all time. He is let's face it the best of the best when it comes to plain old action and shoot em' up. Here is a list of Arnie's greatest ever movies.


The Running Man was beset by problems from the beginning with at least 3 directors coming and going before Paul Michael Glaser was settled on. When Glaser came on board Arnold was none too happy given Glaser's lack of movie directing experience. But it all came together in this throwback action/sci fi movie.

Much credit went to Richard Dawson who played the evil game show host Damon Killian. It was deserved. The Running Man based on a Stephen King book but not following it is about a totalarian future when people are run by the media. Lies, lies and more lies and criminals are put on a game show to be slaughtered. Schwarzenegger of course is framed and now must appear on the show that no one has survived. Packed with great lines and a supporting cast that includes Yaphet Kotto, Jesse Ventura and Mick Fleetwood, yes of Fleetwood Mac. An underrated gem that resonates more today than it did 28 years ago.


Quite simply one of the greatest action movies ever and certainly a game changer. This 1991 smash cost $100m to make and was at that time the biggest budget ever spent on a movie. It was a huge hit and gave us everything we wanted- a plot and lots and lots of action. The next scene only existed to outdo the previous.

This time Arnie is sent back as the good T800 to protect John Conner and his mother from a more advanced and evil T1000. Whilst Arnie is an old robot the T1000 has liquid shape shifting form and becomes a real menace on the streets of LA. This movie is a jaw dropping experience, best viewed on the 156 minute full cut.

3. PREDATOR (1987)

Not only the most quotable Arnie movie ever but perhaps action movie ever too. Predator is ultra cool and ultra slick from the beginning intro music to Arnie smoking his cigar and the last to leave the helicopter.

Filled with wonderful characters just naming them brings back all the memories. Dillion, Dutch, Mac, Billie, Poncho, oh yeah this is a boy's only movie that packs a huge punch.

So Arnie and his expendables are on a jungle mission to rescue some hostages but no one could count on an alien gatecrashing the fun. And this alien doesn't mess around kill after kill and the catch? It's invisible. A giant movie amongst the very best action sci fi movies ever made.

2. TOTAL RECALL (1990)

Arnold plays Douglas Quaid a normal joe who feels he has a calling to go to Mars and in the future that's just a small trip away. But he's warned off going there by his wife and his friends. Instead he goes to a virtual reality memory implant place that 'takes him there', but something goes dreadfuly wrong. Before long his wife and friends want him dead and now he really must get his ass to Mars.

Once there he finds out some of the biggest secrets known to mankind and we are treated to almost 2 hours of non stop action as Arnie sets out to kill the bad guys and get the girl. Supported aptly by Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside and Ronny Cox, Total Recall is in some ways Arnie's tour de force a nasty movie, hyper violent and laden with special effects galore. As the taxi driver says "enjoy the ride", it's hard not too.


His best movie and one of the greatest sci fi action movies of all time. Directed by James Cameron, Arnie gives a mesmerising performance as The Terminator. Evil throughout he stops at nothing to get his victims as he is sent from the future to destory Sarah Conner whose future son will lead a rebellion uprise against the machines.

Brutal nightmarish and filled with some wonderful effects given the time it was made in. The budget was a little over $6m but it made 20x its budget worldwide. This turned out to be a rare bad guy role for Arnie which for some only heightens its status even further. Quite simply fantastic.


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