15 Best Van Damme Movies of All Time

POSTED BY , UPDATED ON May 24th, 2018


7. Assassination Games (2011)

Assassination Games 2011

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The movie was directed by Ernie Barbarash who also directed “Six Bullets”. The film revolves around two assassins working together, one trying to avenge his wife and the other trying to collect a reward.

This is a full action thriller with good actions scenes and a lot of fire-power. The movie did well with the critics and was also received well at the box office.


6. No Retreat, No Surrender (1986)

No Retreat, No Surrender 1986

This was a USA/Hong Kong production and one of the first movies of Van Damme. It was directed by Corey Yuen and has a martial arts-centric plot set in Seattle.

The film brought Van Damme into the limelight but did not do well at the box office. The experience, however, did well for Van Damme as he was noticed by filmmakers who soon offered him good roles.


5. In Hell (2003)

In Hell 2003

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This was directed by Ringo Lam who also directed Maximum Risk released in 1996. The story revolves around a psychopathic prison warden who wants his inmates to fight for his pleasure.

Set in Russia it is a very tough environment and the film has some great fight scenes which are Van Damme’s forte.

The film was shot in Bulgaria and did well at the box office. This was the time when Van Damme turned into a mainstream action star.


4. Enemies Closer (2013)

Enemies Closer 2013_

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This successful film was directed by Peter Hyams who also directed Timecop in 1994, which was one of the best Van Damme movies till that time.

The story is about two sworn enemies who must join up together to fight a ruthless drug cartel on the USA/Canadian border who are after a missing drug shipment and would stop at nothing unless they retrieve it. What transpires is an action-packed mayhem.


3. Hard Target (1993)

Hard Target 1993

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Directed by John Woo, the plot is about a woman in New Orleans who hires a drifter (played by Van Damme) to look for her father who is missing which quickly results in a violent sequence of events.

This was the time that Van Damme was pushing his way through Hollywood after having arrived from Hong Kong. The film earned around $75 million in the worldwide box office, with some good critical acclaim for Van Damme.


2. JCVD (2008)

JCVD 2008

The film is named after the initials of Van Damme’s name and was directed by Mabrouk El Mechri. The story revolves around his wife and the custody of his daughter.

He gets back to Brussels to sort his personal problems and walks into a bank to withdraw some money from his savings and wrongly gets involved in a bank robbery, but the local authorities think otherwise.

The movie did well at the box office worldwide and is a must-see for all Van Damme fans.


1. Bloodsport (1988)

This was directed by Newt Arnold and the film that propelled Van Damme as a martial arts star especially after Bruce Lee’s death which lead to dearth of such action movies.

The storyline focuses on a martial arts fighting tournament in the back alleys of Hong Kong where death during brutal fights is common. An American martial artist named Frank (played by Van Damme) participates in the tournament only to find another competent opponent, Chong (played by Bolo Yeung) whom he must defeat in order to win the tournament.

The critics, as well as the audience, loved the film’s action, music, and the filming location. The box office proceeds were substantial worldwide and the film is still considered a cult classic and for most western Van Damme fans, this is the movie that introduced Van Damme to them.


Honorable Mentions

We also cannot help but mention these Van Damme performances as well:

  • Second in Command (2006)
  • Replicant (2010)

Did we miss any of the best Van Damme movies of all time? Let us know in the comments below!