Universal Pictures/Amazon Studios
Dakota Johnson is an actress known for films like “Fifty Shades of Grey” and “Suspiria.”
Her best movies, according to critics, are “The Social Network” and “The Peanut Butter Falcon.”
Below are the movies that Johnson has appeared in throughout her career, ranked by critical consensus on Rotten Tomatoes.
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Since appearing in her first film at age 9, actress Dakota Johnson has made a name for herself through the popular romance franchise, “Fifty Shades of Grey.” She has also had roles in critically acclaimed movies like “The Social Network,” “The Peanut Butter Falcon,” and “Suspiria.”
The actress has been in 23 films total, but some of them have been more well-received than others.
Here are all of the movies that Johnson has appeared in, ranked according to critical consensus on Rotten Tomatoes.
Note: All scores were current on the date of publication and are subject to change.
Johnson’s lowest-rated movie is the 2015 drama “Chloe & Theo.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 0%
Synopsis: In “Chloe & Theo,” the actress played the titular Chloe, a homeless New Yorker who teams up with Theo (Theo Ikummaq), an Inuit man from the Arctic, to warn world leaders about global warming’s catastrophic impact on the planet.
While critics acknowledged the movie’s timely message, most found it too simplified and caricatured to be effective.
“There’s a line between a narrative that’s deliberately simple and one that’s painfully childish, and it’s not all that fine,” wrote Daniel M. Gold for The New York Times. “But it’s one ‘Chloe & Theo’ crosses repeatedly.”
The actress starred in 2018’s “Fifty Shades Freed,” the conclusion to the popular “Fifty Shades” trilogy.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 12%
Synopsis: In “Fifty Shades Freed,” the third and final installment in the erotic romance franchise “Fifty Shades of Grey,” Christian (Jamie Dornan) and Anastasia (Johnson) marry and face rocky challenges in their newlywed lifestyle.
The sequel was almost universally panned, but Johnson received praise for giving life to a character that often lacked dimension.
“The movie’s tone replicates its substance: the impersonally crafted, emptily realized, expensively produced movie gets its modicum of humanity from Dakota Johnson, who has the gift of simply seeming alive and present when she’s on camera,” wrote The New Yorker critic Richard Brody.
She reprised her role as Anastasia Steele in the 2017 romantic drama “Fifty Shades Darker”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 12%
Synopsis: In the second “Fifty Shades” installment, Christian (Dornan) and Anastasia (Johnson) are attempting to rebuild their relationship after breaking up at the end of the first movie. As they work to regain each other’s trust, mysterious figures from Christian’s past begin to pop up in unnerving ways.
“I came away [from ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’] with a deep sense of respect for Dakota Johnson, who has the incredibly unenviable task of making Ana Steele seem like a real person,” wrote Sarah Marshall for The New Republic. “[…] Johnson’s success with the role comes largely from her ability to make this passive bewilderment seem somehow credible.”
The actress had a role in the 2012 dramedy “Goats.”
Ursula Coyote/Red Crown Productions
Rotten Tomatoes score: 19%
Synopsis: “Goats” follows a teenage boy named Ellis (Graham Phillips), who prepares to leave his rural Tuscon home and attend an elite prep school. At his new school, he falls in love with Minnie (Johnson), a local girl who may be a prostitute.
The film was largely criticized for lacking substance beyond its quirky, episodic format, and for wasting its talented cast on one-note characters.
“A coming-of-age story without any clear epiphany, ‘Goats’ meanders rather aimlessly through 92 minutes of running time much like its titular ruminants, fumbling to achieve genuine audience engagement,” wrote Justin Lowe for The Hollywood Reporter.
She appeared in the 2011 young adult drama “Beastly.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 20%
Synopsis: “Beastly” is a modern take on “Beauty and the Beast,” in which the Beast is an obnoxious high schooler (Alex Pettyfer) who is physically transformed by a classmate’s (Mary-Kate Olsen) spell in order to learn the error of his shallow ways.
Critical consensus found that “Beastly” was fundamentally misguided, and contributed little to the legacy of its classic source material.
“In every aspect, from story to tone to characterization to visual aesthetic, [‘Beastly’ is] laughably perfunctory, as though everyone involved were too embarrassed to give it more than a half-ironic token effort,” wrote The A.V. Club critic Tasha Robinson.
Johnson had a role in the 2014 action thriller “Need for Speed,” which is based on a video game franchise.
Walt Disney Studios
Rotten Tomatoes score: 23%
Synopsis: Based on the racing video game franchise of the same name, “Need For Speed” follows a mechanic and auto-racer named Tobey (Aaron Paul), who fights to get revenge on the man who framed him for a crime (Dominic Cooper) two years earlier — all while bounty hunters and cops pursue him.
Johnson appeared in the largely maligned action movie as Anita, Tobey’s ex-girlfriend.
“[Director] Scott Waugh’s relentlessly noisy, abrasive action movie is based on a computer game – and it shows,” wrote The Independent critic Geoffrey Macnab. “The characterization and plotting are as crude as the car chases are slick.”
Johnson played a woman who enters a BDSM relationship in the 2015 romantic drama “Fifty Shades of Grey.”
Universal Pictures via YouTube
Rotten Tomatoes score: 25%
Synopsis: Arguably, Johnson’s most famous role to date is playing Anastasia Steele in the “Fifty Shades” franchise. The first installment follows Anastasia, a naive recent college grad who enters into a BDSM relationship with enigmatic billionaire Christian Grey.
Although “Fifty Shades of Grey” fared slightly better than its predecessors with critics, its clichéd story beats and surprisingly unerotic romantic scenes still proved to be detrimental.
“In the annals of sexually-charged event cinema, ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ barely lights a candle let alone combusts with unbridled forbidden passion,” wrote Susan Wloszczyna for RogertEgbert.com.
She appears in the 2014 teen comedy “Date and Switch.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 30%
Synopsis: “Date and Switch” centers on Matty (Hunter Cope) and Michael (Nicholas Braun), two teenage best friends whose plans to lose their virginity before senior prom are changed when Matty comes out as gay. Johnson portrayed Em, Matty’s supportive ex-girlfriend.
“In its sloppy humor and unabashedly earnest expressions of friendship and romance, [‘Date and Switch’] feels like any likable, and generally forgettable, teen comedy,” wrote New York Daily News critic Elizabeth Weitzman. “And yet with its casually handled twist, the genre ambles forward just a little bit.”
Her first role was in the 1999 dramedy “Crazy In Alabama,” in which she played a small role alongside her real-life mother.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 30%
Synopsis: At 9 years old, the actress appeared alongside her mother, actress Melanie Griffith, in “Crazy in Alabama” (which was directed by her then-stepfather, Antonio Banderas). In the film, Griffith starred as a ’60s housewife who flees to Hollywood and attempts to be an actress after impulsively murdering her husband. Back in Alabama, her nephew (Lucas Black) becomes increasingly involved with the civil rights movement.
Banderas’ dramedy received a lukewarm reception, mainly for its struggle to juggle the various genres and themes at play in the story.
“‘Crazy in Alabama’ is an ungainly fit of three stories that have no business being shoehorned into the same movie,” Chicago Sun-Times critic Roger Ebert.
The actress starred in 2015’s “Cymbeline,” an adaptation of Shakespeare’s play of the same name.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 31%
Synopsis: Johnson played the daughter of a drug kingpin (Ed Harris) in “Cymbeline,” a modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s play of the same name. The story revolves around the war that erupts between a corrupt police force and a local drug-dealing biker gang.
In attempting to transform “Cymbeline” into a gritty, contemporary drama, director Michael Almereyda faced criticism for creating an overstuffed, unpoetic end product.
“[‘Cymbeline’ is] a mash-up of social media shortcomings and Shakespearean tragedy that becomes as much a tale of cinematic ambition gone awry as anything the Bard intended,” wrote Los Angeles Times critic Betsy Sharkley.
Johnson starred alongside Rebel Wilson in the 2016 romantic comedy “How To Be Single.”
New Line Cinema
Rotten Tomatoes score: 47%
Synopsis: “How To Be Single” follows Alice (Johnson), a recent college grad who breaks up with her long-term boyfriend and moves to New York City to work as a paralegal. Once she arrives, Alice’s free-wheeling new coworker, Robin (Wilson), attempts to help her navigate her newfound singlehood.
Although “How To Be Single” received mixed reviews, many critics appreciated the movie’s attempts to blend rom-com tropes with more progressive ideas surrounding modern dating.
“How to Be Single is a lot like its Jager-bombing, romance-seeking protagonists: Cute and goofy and kind of a mess,” wrote Entertainment Weekly critic Leah Greenblatt. “[The film] doesn’t come close to reinventing the rom-com wheel; its creators aren’t even trying to, really. But at least they’re spinning it forward, just a little bit.”
She costarred with Armie Hammer in the 2019 horror movie “Wounds,” in which a bartender is haunted by a spooky phone.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 51%
Synopsis: “Wounds” unfolds as a bartender (“Call Me By Your Name” star Armie Hammer) begins receiving disturbing texts and calls from a lost phone that he discovered at work. His girlfriend, Carrie (Johnson), becomes obsessed with investigating the strange messages, which increasingly terrorize them both.
While “Wounds” has its share of spine-tingling scares and effective body horror, reviews often described it as ham-fisted and thematically empty.
“‘Wounds’ creeps and crawls and pokes and bleeds but it never really works,” wrote The Guardian critic Benjamin Lee.
Johnson appeared with Emily Blunt and Jason Segel in the 2012 romantic comedy “The Five-Year Engagement.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 63%
Synopsis: At the start of “The Five-Year Engagement,” young couple Tom (Segel) and Violet (Blunt) get engaged. However, as the title suggests, they face a long road to their wedding day, as various obstacles force them to move the date and reevaluate whether they’re right for each other.
Johnson plays Audrey, a restaurant hostess who dates Tom during his brief separation from Violet.
“[‘The Five-Year Engagement’ is an] exemplary modern romantic comedy, personal and symbolic, goofy and substantial, tightly imagined yet loosely strung, wise in bewilderment,” wrote Richard Brody for The New Yorker.
She starred as a young ballet dancer who unknowingly joins a coven of witches in the 2018 horror movie “Suspiria.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 65%
Synopsis: “Suspiria” is a remake of horror auteur Dario Argento’s 1977 horror movie of the same name. It centers on Susie (Johnson), a naive dancer who joins a prestigious ballet company that’s actually a front for an ancient witch coven.
The 2018 version of “Suspiria” proved to be divisive due to its bleak, garish approach to the story, but Johnson enjoyed praise for ably embodying both Susie’s doe-eyed innocence and later, darker demeanor.
“Johnson finally has a role befitting her talents,” wrote USA Today critic Brian Truitt. “There’s an enticingly quiet intensity in her Susie, who takes some major turns in the tale that the actress navigates with grace, and Johnson captures just the right physicality in the various modern dances that ground the movie with a primordial weight and sexual energy.”
The actress had a minor role in the 2012 indie drama “For Ellen.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 67%
Synopsis: In the indie drama “For Ellen,” aspiring rockstar Joby (Paul Dano) is in the midst of divorce proceedings, in which he’s expected to receive much-needed money from the sale of his and his estranged wife’s old house. But he soon learns that agreeing to the settlement would mean forfeiting custody of his 6-year-old daughter.
Johnson has a small role in the movie as Joby’s sister, Cindy, who advises him on how to regain custody of his daughter.
“In other hands, [‘For Ellen’] could play as glib comedy or slick sentiment, yet [director So Yong] Kim’s patient, clear-sighted film moves to the urgings of tough emotional realities rather than obvious story patterns,” wrote Trevor Johnston for Time Out. “It’s uncomfortably funny, achingly true — and the work of an absolutely genuine artist.”
In the 2015 crime drama “Black Mass,” Johnson was a mob wife.
Claire Folger/Warner Bros. Entertainment
Rotten Tomatoes score: 73%
Synopsis: Johnny Depp played the infamous crime lord Whitey Bulger in “Black Mass,” which was largely hailed by critics for its enticing dramatization of mob dealings and haunting lead performances. Johnson co-starred in the film as Whitey’s wife, Lindsey.
“[‘Black Mass’ is] one of those movies that you don’t exactly enjoy (so many guns, so many deaths), but you appreciate for its craft and tension, and for its cast’s willingness to lose themselves in the darkness,” wrote Moira MacDonald for The Seattle Times.
The actress played a ’60s hippie in the 2018 neo-noir “Bad Times at the El Royale.”
Kimberley French/Twentieth Century Fox
Rotten Tomatoes score: 75%
Synopsis: Set in 1969, “Bad Times at the El Royale” tells the story of seven strangers, who unexpectedly congregate in a shadowy motel one night and are forced to divulge dark secrets. Johnson starred in the ne0-noir as Emily Summerspring, a hippie who commits an apparent kidnapping at the beginning of the film.
The movie received largely positive reviews, although some critics took issue with its long runtime and slightly uneven pacing.
“Yes, ‘Bad Times at the El Royale’ is bloated and might’ve functioned better as a punchy bit of neo-noir,” wrote David Sims for The Atlantic. “But it’s rare for a genre film to feel so sweeping and inventive […] There might be too much going on, but as the final act descends into carnage, Goddard is at least trying to say something.”
She appeared as herself in the 2020 mockumentary “The Nowhere Inn.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 75%
Synopsis: Carrie Brownstein and musician St. Vincent (whose real name is Annie Clark) play versions of themselves in the music mockumentary “The Nowhere Inn.” In the movie, St. Vincent hires Brownstein to film a documentary about the musician’s promotional tour for her new album, “Masseducation.”
Johnson, who plays herself, appears in “The Nowhere Inn” as St. Vincent’s girlfriend. The mockumentary premiered at Sundance Film Festival in January 2020 and is seeking distribution.
“St. Vincent and Brownstein prove to be an incredible pair to study at the center of this movie’s kaleidoscope, and the film is befitting their boundless and generous creativity,” wrote Nick Allen for RogerEbert.com.
In “The Friend” (which screened at the 2019 Toronto International Film Festival), she starred as a woman dealing with a terminal illness.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 77%
Synopsis: Based on a National Magazine Award-winning Esquire article, “The Friend” tells the true story of the close bond between married couple Matthew (Casey Affleck) and Nicole (Johnson), and their best friend (Jason Segel), who moves in to help them out after Nicole is diagnosed with terminal cancer.
“[‘The Friend’ is] a small-scale human story, precious few of which make it to film these days,” wrote Katey Rich for Vanity Fair. “It’s also, if you’re in the market for that kind of thing, an extremely effective tearjerker.”
She had a supporting role in the 2012 buddy cop comedy “21 Jump Street.”
Rotten Tomatoes score: 85%
Synopsis: “21 Jump Street” is a reboot of the popular ’70s comedy series of the same name. In this version, Channing Tatum and Jonah Hill star as an unlikely cop duo who pose as high schoolers to investigate a drug ring.
Johnson played Fuhazy, a fellow undercover cop who looks down on the immature protagonists.
“[’21 Jump Street’ is] that rare comedy that’s funny throughout, with a hilarious story that hinges on the unlikely pairing of Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum,” wrote Claudia Puig for USA Today.
She starred in the 2016 psychological crime drama “A Bigger Splash.”
Fox Searchlight Pictures
Rotten Tomatoes score: 90%
Synopsis: In “A Bigger Splash,” a rockstar (Tilda Swinton) and her boyfriend’s (Matthias Schoenaerts) vacation in Italy is disrupted when her old flame (Ralph Fiennes) and his daughter (Johnson) join them.
The growing jealousy and desire between the vacationers soon builds until it becomes fatal.
“‘A Bigger Splash’ is a sensuous delight of a film, but it has a darker heart that brands itself in the viewer’s mind,” wrote The Atlantic critic David Sims. “[…] Though it starts out as an energetic romantic yarn […] It becomes a far more engrossing film when it breaks out of its reverie and confronts the ugliness both within the villa and without.”
Johnson briefly appeared in the 2010 drama “The Social Network.”
Sony Pictures Entertainment
Rotten Tomatoes score: 96%
Synopsis: “The Social Network” dramatizes the story of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg’s rise to power. Johnson appears in one scene as a young Stanford student who has just had a one-night stand with Zuckerburg’s eventual business partner, Sean Parker (Justin Timberlake). As she’s leaving, the actress’s character tells Sean about the sudden popularity of Facebook across college campuses.
The acclaimed drama was nominated for eight Oscars and went on to win three.
“This account of Facebook’s founder, and of the website’s explosive growth, quickly lifts you to a state of exhilaration, and pretty much keeps you there for two hours,” wrote Joe Morgenstern for The Wall Street Journal. “David Fincher’s film is devastating as biography—an unfriending of epic proportions—and dazzling as contemporary cultural history.”
In the 2019 adventure film “The Peanut Butter Falcon,” Johnson starred alongside Shia LaBeouf.
Rotten Tomatoes score: 96%
Synopsis: “The Peanut Butter Falcon” unfolds like a modern Mark Twain adventure, as Zak (Zack Gottsagen), a man with Down syndrome, runs away from his residential care home in hopes of making his professional wrestling dreams come true. Along the way, he becomes friends with outlaw-turned-wrestling coach Tyler (Shia LaBeouf), and they convince Eleanor (Johnson), the carer tasked with bringing Zak home, to join them for a trip on Tyler’s fishing boat.
“[‘The Peanut Butter Falcon’], which trades frequently in low-key wish-fulfillment fantasies, feels like it could turn sappy at any moment, but somehow it never does,” wrote Ben Sachs for The Chicago Reader. “This may have as much to do with the colorful eastern seaboard settings as it does the filmmakers’ sensitive handling of the main character’s developmental disability; the film feels authentic as well as sincere.”
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