Rihanna has been a force to be reckoned with for over fourteen years now, producing some of the best music videos in American pop culture. Not only is she an incredibly talented vocalist, but she is also one of the most versatile performers in the industry. So Street decided to bring you a definitive ranking of Rihanna's cinematic masterpieces.
42. "We Ride" (2006)
This was made way back before Rihanna truly honed her image. As a result, this video is unfortunately unfocused, unoriginal and unentertaining.
41. "Cheers (Drink to That)" (2011)
While this seems to be a nice tribute to Rihanna's fans, it seems like Rih just copped out from making an actual music video.
40. "Unfaithful" (2006)
While there is a definite plot line to this video, the whole theme is a bit played out. She does, however, rock the hell out of that little black dress.
39. "Don't Stop the Music" (2007)
While this song is an undeniable banger, she spends entirely too much time just staring herself down in the mirror. There's a kicking party throwing down, and she's just too busy looking at herself (not that we blame her). However, the color and lighting schemes are nice to look at.
38. "American Oxygen" (2015)
While this video sends an important message, it is more of a montage than an actual video.
37. "California King Bed" (2011)
Rihanna's bedroom sits between the clouds, and we're given beautiful dream–like images. However, the theme comes off as a little cheesy and boring.
36. "FourFiveSeconds" (2015)
This video makes as little sense as the song.
35. "Hate That I Love You" (2007)
Everything about this video's setting is soft and visually pleasing, but disappointingly, Ne–Yo has more chemistry with his fedora than he does with Rihanna.
34. "Who's That Chick?" (2010)
Technically this is a David Guetta video, but Rihanna is the focus, so I say it counts. This is definitely the silliest of Rihanna's videos, as it looks like all of the performers took acid and are now running around all giddy.
33. "Pon de Replay" (2005)
A classic and the epitome of 2005 fashion.
32. "If I Never Saw Your Face" (2008)
Rih and Adam Levine have great chemistry in this bright and performative video, but it would have packed an even bigger punch if the two had committed to being truly provocative.
31. "If It's Lovin That You Want"
A fun and flirty performance from Rihanna as she runs around on the beach enjoying herself. The close–ups on her face are fantastic.
30. "You Da One" (2011)
There are some seriously cool lighting effects in this video, but the lyrics are distracting and unattractive.
29. "Rehab" (2008)
Let's all just take a moment to appreciate the fact that Justin Timberlake takes an outdoor shower in the middle of the desert while fully clothed. Other than that, the vibrant neon colors of this video make it aesthetically pleasing.
28. "Wait Your Turn" (2009)
This video definitely does not receive the praise it deserves. The images are so gritty and edgy, the camera angles are entirely unique, and the costuming is nothing but dope.
27. "Shut Up and Drive" (2007)
This video is incredibly charged and fun to watch, and Rihanna slays as a badass mechanic.
26. "Take A Bow" (2008)
Rihanna certainly does know how to paint a good backstory. It also feels like she's speaking directly to you—I wouldn't want to be that guy who crossed her.
25. "Only Girl (In the World)" (2010)
Here, Rihanna takes on a girlier persona but still maintains her edge. The field of flowers that she frolics through is both dark and colorful, making this video a sort of twisted and dark fantasy.
24. "What's My Name?" (2010)
This is the closest we might ever get to seeing what Aubrih's relationship would look like, and they have undeniable chemistry. It's all close–ups and eye contact, making this video the epitome of what most couples would like to imagine they look like when they're together and nobody's watching. The blurry effect placed over the pictures makes them seem dream–like and fantastical.
23. "SOS" (2006)
This video showcases Rihanna's versatility as a performer, and she looks like she's having a great time. Plus, the infinity room is nothing but cinematic awesomeness.
22. "Diamonds" (2012)
While this video lacks an overall theme, the minute details caught by the camera are cinematically breathtaking, and this video is truly beautiful to watch.
21. "Sledgehammer" (2016)
Packed with sci–fi awesomeness, this shows just how versatile Rihanna actually is as a performer.
20. "Umbrella" (2007)
This was the first time Rihanna branded herself as the "good girl gone bad," and we could not be more grateful. The special effects in this video are really fun, with a particular highlight being her transformation into a silver statuesque goddess.
19. "What Now" (2013)
This video is undeniably creepy, as her bodily contortions are truly grotesque and captivating. Overall, it's reminiscent of Sia's "Chandelier."
18. "Disturbia" (2008)
This is perhaps the most disturbing of Rihanna's music videos with the combination of frightening wardrobe, misshapen light patterns and deformed choreography. Plus, we have to give her props for letting live tarantulas crawl over her body.
16. "Rockstar 101" (2010)
The visual textures of this video. Enough said.
15. "Te Amo" (2010)
Rihanna picks a female love interest in this one, and it's the sexiest interaction we've seen Rihanna have with a co–star. The moments between them are so erotic, and yet they barely touch. Plus, the two of them fit flawlessly into the incredibly vivid and colorful setting.
14. "Kiss It Better" (2016)
The twisting shadows transfix you to the screen, creating a video that twists and coils and drives you nuts.
13. "Where Have You Been" (2012)
Rihanna transforms flawlessly from look to look in this video, impressing us with exotic settings and impressive dance moves.
12. "S&M" (2011)
Bubblegum meets dominatrix in the most twisted way in this video that was banned in 11 countries for its explicit content. However, instead of making something predictable, Rihanna turns this video into a commentary on how the media portrays her. I dig it.
11. "Man Down" (2011)
This video is especially moving, as it shows Rihanna murder the man who sexually assaulted her. However, there are some wonderful images of Rih enjoying her time in Jamaica, shown through a pale filter.
10. "This Is What You Came For" (2016)
Technically this is a Calvin Harris song, but Rihanna is the star, and only she could make an oversized onesie look amazing. The flashing graphics in the background are truly stimulating, leaving you wide–eyed from beginning to end.
9. "Russian Roulette" (2009)
This video contains some of the strongest visuals we have seen from Rihanna so far. Her vulnerability totally tugs at your heartstrings, and you find yourself on the edge of your seat as you watch her dodge bullets underwater.
8. "Hard" (2009)
Rihanna defines badassery in this military–themed video that is brimming with awesome wardrobe and strong physicality.
7. "Rude Boy" (2010)
All of the moving parts in this video bounce off of one another wonderfully, from the pop art to the vivid colors to the raunchy dance moves—it all works wonderfully. Rihanna packs this video with personality.
6. "Pour It Up" (2013)
Another display of Rihanna's badassery can be found in this video. It is a true performance—vivid in every aspect—and you can't take your eyes off the screen.
5. "Needed Me" (2016)
This may seem reminiscent of "Spring Breakers," and that would be because it is by the same director. Here we get the same radiant colors paired with gnarled images.
4. "Bitch Better Have My Money" (2015)
This video is just totally wild.
3. "Stay" (2013)
This is perhaps the most vulnerable we have ever seen Rihanna be, and her emotions shine through the murkiness of the water. If you aren't moved by this video, your heart is cold and dead.
2. "Work" (2016)
Both versions of this music video are nothing short of true performance. There's something just so incredibly about the inside of this dark and smoky dancehall. The second part in turn is so aesthetically pleasing, and you're completely unable to take your eyes off of Rihanna. It was also just such an impressive move to make two music videos for one song. Props.
1. "We Found Love" (2011)
This video earns its title as the best Rihanna music video because it is perhaps her greatest cinematic performance. The visuals and special effects are so memorable and watching her run around being a goon with the sexy Chris Brown lookalike is just so fun. Well done, Rih.