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30 Greatest Theme Park Movie Rides

The Incredible Hulk Rollercoaster - Universal Orlando, USA

The Ride: Currently in operation as part of Universal’s Islands Of Adventure, The Incredible Hulk coaster features a whopping seven inversions. That’s the good stuff. A zero-g roll, a cobra roll and two corkscrews are some examples of the crazy headrushes you’ll experience.

The Movie Connection: One of the most unique interactive coasters, the entire ride is based around your experience of transforming into the Hulk. The cars are drawn through Dr. Banner’s laboratory right as the gamma-ray accelerator malfunctions. The rest of the ride spins outta control to simulate the Hulk’s metamorphosis.

Don’t Forget To Scream: As the ride accelerates from 2 mph to 40 mph. In two seconds.

T2 3-D: Battle Across Time - Universal Studios Florida and Japan

The Ride: A simulated 3-D and live-action ride that takes place in a 700 seat theatre. Sit back and enjoy a brief demonstration by Cyberdyne systems. Brief because it’s interrupted by Sarah and John Connor warning you of the dangers of Skynet.

A T-1000 appears, bullets fly, the T-800 shows up through a time portal and... well, you get the idea.

The Movie Connection: Taking place sometime during the events of Terminator 2 , the ride was crafted with James Cameron’s involvement. He wrote and directed the movie portion of the ride, and the original cast returned to reprise their roles in this spin-off tale.

Don’t Forget To Scream: As The T1000000, an arachnid terminator, scurries towards you.

King Kong 360 3-D - Universal Studios, USA

The Ride: Part of the Universal Studios Hollywood studio tour, board a tram which will whisk you away to Skull Island! Experience a battle on Kong’s home turf between the simian beastie and a ton of dinosaurs.

Expect lots of shaking and tilting from your motion-based platform vehicle as a never-ending display of 3D screens make it seem like you’re stuck right in the middle of their fight.

The Movie Connection: It’s based on the events of Peter Jackson’s 2005 big screen outing, and even includes an intro from the director himself. The dinos that battle Kong make an appearance in the movie.

Don’t Forget To Scream: As you spy a V-Rex yanking the final car of the tram from the tracks and chucking it into a pit.

Saw: The Ride - Thorpe Park, UK

The Ride: A Gerstlauer Euro-Fighter roller coaster, the Saw ride is the only horror movie ride ever constructed. It’s terrifying anyway due to its three inversions; a dive loop, an Immelman loop and a Zero-G roll.

Also the “beyond vertical” drop that riders experience adds another few exhilarating minutes of fear.

The Movie Connection: Most of the movie mythology is referenced in the queue section, with varying devices from the franchise rusting away near the lines. Both Billy and Jigsaw appear several times during the ride. Mainly to laugh in a sinister way at your shrieks.

Don’t Forget To Scream: When the ride careens down a 100 degree vertical drop at 55 mph - narrowly avoiding two huge swinging blades. *NB: SAW: ALIVE is only open at Thorpe Park's Fright Night events in October**

Jurassic Park - Universal Studios, USA

The Ride: A water-based ride, this Jurassic Park attraction based at Universal Studios is a cross between a rollercoaster and log flume. With massive dinosaurs dotting the landscape, they are only to happy to nibble on visitors to Isla Nublar if the park malfunctions...

The Movie Connection: The pre-ride safety video is delivered by In-Gen employees, as you embark on the ‘Jurassic Park River Raft Adventure’ in the same vein that the original JP visitors took their doomed Jeeps out for a spin.

Don’t Forget To Scream: As you see a A 50-ft animatronic T-Rex emerge from the fog.

The Indiana Jones Adventure - Disneyland, USA

The Ride: One of Universal’s most popular dark rides, the temple of the forbidden eye finds riders in enhanced motion vehicles disguised as jeeps. The further you venture into the temple, the more likely you are to experience creepy crawlies, sudden black outs and a juddering jeep.

The Movie Connection: It links to the film franchise via the character of Indy himself. The story branches out into an entirely new adventure for the whip-cracker, as you explore an ancient Bengalese temple.

Don’t Forget To Scream: When a massive animatronic snake appears next to your jeep... and starts hissing.

Harry Potter And The Forbidden Adventure - Universal Orlando, USA

The Ride: A five minute dark ride, this indoor simulation is a must for Potter aficionados. Experience a Quidditch match and the Chamber of Secrets as the track-mounted KUKA robotic arms move your ‘enchanted bench’ (that’s the Wizarding World name for your car) deeper into Harry’s world.

The Movie Connection: As the ride seamlessly escorts you through Hogwarts Castle, there are plenty of opportunities to point and shriek at elements recognisable from the movies.

While the story itself is an amalgam of Harry’s experience as a young wizard, you aren’t strictly ‘involved’ in a part of the movie.

Don’t Forget To Scream: The second your ‘bench’ is chased by a gaggle of dementors!

The Revenge Of The Mummy - Universal Studios Florida, USA

The Ride: A dark rollercoaster, The Revenge Of The Mummy is an enclosed ride. Those onboard are kept inside a specially-designed creepy atmosphere, where Imhotep’s curse reigns supreme. He stalks riders and possesses ride attendants while cars hurtle around an indoor track rather quickly.

The Movie Connection: The ride takes place during production for a faux-sequel to the 1999 Universal reboot. In a nifty meta-version of events, the mummy pursues the crew including a diva-tastic Brendan Fraser.

Don’t Forget To Scream: When your car takes a sudden 40ft drop - while Imhotep is also screaming.

Men In Black: Alien Attack - Universal Studios Florida, USA

The Ride: An interactive laser tag game, players enter the Men In Black headquarters for training and collect weapons before boarding their vehicle. When a real alien attack is launched, the passengers must blast the aliens with their lasers to save New York city.

The Movie Connection: Slotting somewhere into the events of the first Men In Black outing, director of the program Zed (Rip Torn) pops up to warn of the imminent invasion. Agent J (Will Smith) has a recurring role towards the end, advising players of the first movie’s big bad: Edgar.

Don’t Forget To Scream: When those cheeky extraterrestrials fire back, causing your car to spin wildly out of control. Perhaps bring a sick bag.

Transformers: The Ride - Universal Studios, Worldwide

The Ride: A fixture at Universal Studios, this dark ride places you inside an motion platform autobot car with twelve other participants. You hurtle around a track, while thirteen screens project 3D images of the unfolding action.

The Movie Connection: It hooks into the Transformers’ hunt for the Allspark, a theme explored in the first flick. Your autobot, Evac, unites with his buddies Optimus Prime and Bumblebee to defend the cubic lifesource and battle the usual suspects - Megatron and his posse. No sign of Sam Witwicky.

Don’t Forget To Scream: When Megatron fires a missile directly at your autobot carrier.

Gem Seddon
Gem is GR+'s west coast entertainment news reporter. She’s a bit obsessed with all things Aliens and Terminator.