Below is a non-exhaustive list of movies where San Francisco is the target of some sort of destruction--sometimes by nature, and sometimes by the film's antagonist.
- San Francisco (1936) - In this movie, based on the 1906 earthquake in San Francisco, the city is, predictably, destroyed by the earthquake.
- It Came from Beneath the Sea (1955) - A giant mutant octopus (with six arms, so maybe a sextopus?) terrorizes San Francisco and tears down the Golden Gate Bridge.
- Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978) - Gelatenous extraterrestrials abandon their uninhabitable planet and land in San Francsico, where they begin their clandestine invasion. (The 1956 version of the film is set in nearby Mill Valley as well.)
- Superman (1978) - A catastrophic earthquake devastates San Francisco, and Superman rescues a school bus precariously hanging off of a badly-damaged Golden Gate Bridge.
- A View to a Kill (1986) - James Bond thwarts Max Zorin's plans to detonate explosives at lakes in near the San Andreas and Hayward faults which would cause them to flood.
- The Rock (1996) - A radical group of ex-Marines sieze Alcatraz and threaten San Francisco with explosives and biological weapons.
- The Core (2003) - The earth's core stops rotating, causing widespread distruction throughout the earth. San Francisco is struck by an an event that leads to the destruction of the Golden Gate Bridge.
- X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) - Magneto moves the Golden Gate bridge to provide easy access to Alcatraz island where Worthington Labs is located, destroying it.
- MegaShark vs Giant Octopus (2009) - MegaShark and Giant Octopus are corralled into the San Francisco Bay in order to fight to the death. While it is entering the San Francisco Bay, MegaShark jumps out of the water and destroys the Golden Gate Bridge.
- Monsters vs. Aliens (2009) - A standoff between the monsters and a destructive robot occurs in the San Francisco bay, and in the process the Golden Gate Bridge is destroyed.
- Star Trek (2009) - Captain Nero, the villain in the movie, drills in the San Francisco Bay in order to deposit Red Matter into Earth in order to destroy it.
- Terminator Salvation (2009) - In 2018, John Connor launches an assault on a major Skynet base in San Francisco.
- Contagion (2011) - San Francisco is one of the first cities hit by the super-virus, and is used frequently to illustrate the state of the decline of civilization.
- Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (2011) - Ethan Hunt thwarts Kurt Hendricks attempts to launch a Russian nuclear missile targeted at San Francisco.
- Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) - Hyper-intelligent apes from the North Bay laboratories of "Gen-Sys" break out and wreak havoc on the city of San Francisco.
- Pacific Rim (2013) - A giant monster, or "Kaiju" appears from another dimension and attacks San Francisco, with the attack spanning nearly a week and killing tens of thousands. The attack was only the first of many attacks around the world.
- Star Trek Into Darkness (2013) -The starship USS Vengence crashes into the downtown just after a battle against the USS Enterprise.
- Godzilla (2014) - You guessed it: Godzilla wreaks havoc in San Francisco, and the Golden Gate Bridge goes down in the process.
- San Andreas (2015) - As well as Los Angeles, the entire San Francisco is destroyed by an earthquake and then a tsunami. The movie's climax takes place here.
- Terminator Genisys (2015) - San Francisco is shown destroyed in a post-apocalyptic future, as well as a major fight scene taking place on the bridge.
The Top 5 Edit
- San Andreas (2015) - The city is completely destroyed in this film, at first it starts out small with buildings collapsing but ultimately, the city falls apart. After a huge earthquake and 10 aftershocks, a tsunami breaks out, leaving our hero, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson, to navigate the ruins on a boat while mysteriously not dying in the process. The amount of destruction in this film makes this movie hard to beat on the top 5 list.
- Star Trek (2009) - Although the city ultimately survives destruction, in this movie the villain is destroying the entire planet, and just decided to start in San Francisco. In a Top 5 list, it's hard to beat a movie where the villain is destroying the entire planet.
- The Rock (1996) - A group of badasses set up shop on Alcatraz and keep the entire city hostage. This is one of the few movies where the villain threatens to level the entire city. Fortunately, Nicholas Cage is there to save the city.
- MegaShark vs Giant Octopus (2009) - The San Francisco Bay takes center stage at the climax of this movie and it's where MegaShark and Giant Octopus fight to the death. While MegaShark eats an entire 747 on take-off from LAX earlier in the movie, that's nothing compared to the havoc he wreaks on the Golden Gate bridge in the final scenes.
- San Francisco (1936) - This movie attempts to reenact history by depicting the 1906 Earthquake that practically levelled San Francisco. For sheer destruction value, this movie wins.
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