NOW PLAYING

in theaters



new on DVD/BluRay


review index

HOT TOPICS



Welcome

The Film Experience™ was created by Nathaniel R


 Gemini, Cinephile, Actressexual. Also loves cats. All material herein is written and copyrighted by him, unless otherwise noted. twitter | facebook | pinterest | tumblr | letterboxd

 

Powered by Squarespace
Beauty vs. Beast

 

Can Shelley Duvall keep it together long enough to win THE SHINING poll ? Have you voted yet?

 

Comment Fun

COMMENT DU JOUR
Birdman's Secret Advantage
Oscar Loves Theater Stage Movies

 

"My favorite movie about the theater is ALL ABOUT EVE, but then again that movie is my favorite movie about everything about movies and love and lust and life itself." - Jay

"TOPSY-TURVY perfectly captures the feeling of imminent failure that you get when you're in rehearsals." - Peggy

 

Keep TFE Strong

Your suscription dimes make an enormous difference to The Film Experience in terms of stability and budget to dream bigger. Consider...

I ♥ The Film Experience

THANKS IN ADVANCE

For those who can't commit to a dime a day, consider a one time donation for an article or a series you are glad you didn't have to live without.

What'cha Looking For?
Subscribe
« Thoughts I had while staring at Nicole Kidman in "V" Magazine | Main | Hit Me With Your Best Shot: "Dog Day Afternoon" »
Thursday
Aug232012

Gene Kelly (& My 50 Favorite Actors)

Happy Centennial to Gene Kelly (and all film fans who love him)!

100 years ago on this very day Eugene Curran Kelly was born in Pittsburgh. His mom pushed him into dance class but he didn't commit to becoming a dancer until the age of 15. At 29 fame hit with Broadway's "Pal Joey." Almost immediately thereafter he accidentally (or at least halfheartedly since he intended to return to stage) lept from the stage to the screen and stayed, starting with a co-starring role in For Me and My Gal (1942, previously covered -- he credits Judy Garland with teaching him how to act for cameras). Kelly remains the best silver screen song & dance man of all time (sorry Astaire!) and since musicals are the perfect genre, making full use of every tool available to filmmakers aurally and visually, he also happens to be one of my ten favorite movie stars ever of either gender. I'd hoped to celebrate Kelly all month long but time gets away from you in the dog days of summer. Ah well, at least we had Singin' in the Rain (1952)!!!

So herewith a quick semi-revised list...

Nathaniel's 50 Favorite Male Movie Stars of All Time


Tier 1 - Yin and Yang
neither my life nor the movies would be complete without them
MONTGOMERY CLIFT
GENE KELLY

48 more after the jump

Tier 2 -The Top Dozen
in no particular order but trust in my ♥ for each 

Warren and Natalie at the Oscars in 1962

WARREN BEATTY 
JAMES DEAN
JUDE LAW 

JEFF BRIDGES
BRAD PITT
CARY GRANT
PAUL NEWMAN

GENE HACKMAN
TONY LEUNG CHIU-WAI
MARLON BRANDO

Tier 4 - Intermittent Passions
DUSTIN HOFFMAN
WILLIAM HOLDEN
RICHARD BURTON
STEVE MARTIN

William, Viggo, and Jimmy

JAMES STEWART
GAEL GARCIA BERNAL
JACK LEMMON
EWAN MCGREGOR
VIGGO MORTENSEN

Tier 5 - Old Faithful
Reliably worth loving
BURT LANCASTER 
GREGORY PECK 
ROCK HUDSON 
RALPH FIENNES

Sir Ian McKellen. Claude Rains

SIR IAN MCKELLEN
BUSTER KEATON
PETER O' TOOLE 
DANIEL DAY-LEWIS
SIR IAN HOLM 
ALBERT FINNEY 
DENZEL WASHINGTON 
FREDRIC MARCH 
JIM BROADBENT
MARK RUFFALO
TOM WILKINSON 
CLAUDE RAINS 

Tier 6 - It's a Love/Hate Thing
sometimes they just annoy me. Yet it's impossible to shake their best work

JACK NICHOLSON
JOHNNY DEPP
SEAN PENN 
CHRISTIAN BALE 

Tier 7- At This Very Moment
will these cinematic obsessions be shortlived moviegoer/moviestar flings or lifelong cinephile marriages?
RYAN GOSLING
MICHAEL FASSBENDER 
CHANNING TATUM 

Fassbender, dressing to impress

JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT 
TOM HARDY 
COLIN FARRELL 
HUGH JACKMAN
JAKE GYLLENHAAL 

Tier 8 - I Should See More Before Fully Committing
DANA ANDREWS
ALAIN DELON

I showed you my list, now you show me yours.
You don't have to go to 50 of course. That's for the truly insane with lots of time to kill today!

But What About...?
Actors I used to be wild for *or* thought I would love more by now when they first arrived but the passion has dwindledSARSGAARD, OWEN, HARRIS, REDFORD, HURT, EVERETT,  CRUDUP, GRAVES, ECCLESTON, MURPHY, WILSON, DICAPRIO, ANGLADE, AUTEUIL, KANESHIRO, BETTANY, DAMON, BANDERAS, BARDEM, QUAID, NORTON; Actors I maybe should reconsider on account of at least one performance *or* the regard in which they're held: WELLES, SCHEIDER, KINSKI, CHEUNG, FINCH, POWELL, COOPER, BOYD, CARREY, CROSBY, DEPARDIEU, GIELGUD, GUINNESS, HURT, HUSTON, IRONS, KAYE, KEITEL, BRYNNER, MASON, FONDA, GABLE, DUVALL, ALLEN, STAMP, YORK; Actors other people love a gazllion times more than me: ASTAIRE, BOGART, CAINE, CHAPLIN, CROWE, CRUISE, DENIRO, PACINO, HANKS, MITCHUM, OLIVIER, ROBARDS, MASTROIANNI, MIFUNE, FREEMAN, HOPKINS, SPACEY

PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (49)

Daniel Day-Lewis by a mile.

James Stewart, James Mason, Tony Leung Chiu-Wai and Claude Rains follow in no particular order.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLaika

Oh god, this would eat up my whole day so I'll resist, but if I have one comment on your list, it's really great to see Tony Leung Chiu-Wai up there in the tiers. He is so seriously under-appreciated.

PS Have you already done this for actresses? (Or too hard?)

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmes

In no order:

Max Von Sydow
Antonio Banderas
Ewan MacGregor
Michael Fassbender
Marcello Mastroianni
Tony Leung
Ian McKellan
Anthony Hopkins
Ryan Gosling
Javier Bardem

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlejandro

I love when your actress-devotion shines through, like when you type Mastrantonio for Mastroianni. You can take the boy away from the women but you can't..., etc., etc.

I'm curious where Oldman belongs in all of this for you.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNick Davis

I'm with Ames...even considering doing this would take up my entire day. It saddens me your lack of love for Russell Crowe, who would probably battle Paul Newman for my #1 spot.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAndrew

My Top 10 reads like:

1. Brando
2. Welles
3. Nicholson
4. Fiennes (Ralph)
5. de Niro (assuming the world ended in 1991)
6. Pacino (assuming the world ended in 1997)
7. Grant
8. Hank Fonda
9. Beatty
10. Duvall

Though it should be noted that in my cinematic world there's an ocean between 2 and 3, and then between 6 and 7. And though I'm a devoted actressexual, if I made a list of my favorite on-screen performers with the ladies, the top two slots would stay top 2.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

My top 10:

Stewart (Two best perfs: Harvey and Vertigo)
DeNiro (Two best perfs: Once Upon a Time in America and Brazil)
Pacino (Two best perfs: Godfather Part II and Glengarry Glen Ross)
Caine (Two best perfs: Get Carter ('71) and The Man who Would be King)
Hackman (Two best perfs: The Conversation and The Royal Tenenbaums)
Brando (Two best perfs: On the Waterfront and Apocalypse Now)
Sellers (Two best perfs: Dr. Strangelove and Being There)
Dennis Price (didn't get HALF the career he deserved) (Two best perfs: A Canterbury Tale and Kind Hearts and Coronets)
John Cusack (Two best perfs: Stand by Me and Grosse Pointe Blank)
Dustin Hoffman (Two best perfs: The Graduate and All the President's Men)

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I do want to point out that I'd put Pitt at Number 11 after the past five years of bravado performances, and I think he'd crack my Top 10 fairly soon.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn T

Pretty sure Spencer Tracy is at the top of my all-time list, along with Bogart, Mastroianni, Grant, Bridges, early Pacino, and Newman. Sad that he's nowhere on yours unless I missed it.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAR

Buster Keaton, William Powell, Charles Boyer, Robert Ryan, Humphrey Bogart

Modern actors bore me.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJohn

Tim Robbins
Morgan Freeman
Harrison Ford
Denzel Washington
Ryan Gosling
Danny Glover
Emile Hirsch
Forest Whitaker
Paul Giamatti
Tom Hardy

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenter4rtful

The difficult thing for me is separating "Male Movie Stars" from "Male Actors"; the former is more about personality and presence while the latter is about talent. For example, Daniel Day-Lewis would make my list of greatest male actors, no question, but not one of my greatest male movie stars. The opposite is true of Harrison Ford. But my list would probably look something like this:

Tier One: Cary Grant, Humphrey Bogart, Gregory Peck, Marlon Brando, Gene Kelly, James Stewart, Harrison Ford, Denzel Washington, Brad Pitt, Henry Fonda

Tier Two: Robert DeNiro, Montgomery Clift, Fred Astaire, Marcello Mastroianni, Tom Cruise, Charlton Heston, Warren Beatty, James Dean, George Clooney, Paul Newman

To go any further would lead me too far down the rabbit hole, so I'll stop there... for now.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterdenny

I'm curious to see where Peter Sellers and Max von Sydow who are probably my top two place on your list.
Also, a little bit upset that you don't share my affection for De Niro and Mitchum, but oh well, Tony Leung and Brad Pitt in your top ten makes up for that :)

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmir

I think I fell in love with Alain Delon when I watched Le Samourai. Then I went on watching some of his famous movies. Have you seen Purple Noon? It's an original that's much better than the remake Talented Mr. Ripley, plus Delon is just so irresistible.

My Top 5 actors where my unconditional love for them will not stop me from watching their movies no matter how bad the reviews are:
James Dean
James Stewart
Al Pacino
Paul Newman
Leonardo DiCaprio

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike

I can't even start making up my own list, but if no one will ask I will... Tier 3?

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterRyan T.

M A T H I E U

A M A L R I C

I S

G O D

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercal roth

Al Pacino, by miles. Not only before 1997, like someone said. He´s awesome in: Insomnia (2002), Angels of America (2003), Merchant of Venice, specially (2004), and You Don´t Know Jack (2010).

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBenett

Albert Finney is the greatest actor who ever lived. Also, Paul Newman, Jack NIcholson, Dustin Hoffman, Al Pacino, Fred Astaire, William Powell, Gregory Peck, John Garfield, Jack Lemmon, Michael Caine and Terrence Stamp.

Tom Hardy and Joseph Gordon-Levitt are the heirs apparent.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

I feel I just need to see more things before I have an interesting unique top 10. Mine's gonna be pretty boring.

Humphrey Bogart
Matt Damon
Colin Firth
Philip Seymour Hoffman
William Holden
Gene Kelly
Sean Penn
Brad Pitt
Kevin Spacey
Mark Fucking Wahlberg (Honest to god I love him so much)

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBrady

My Mt. Rushmore: Stewart, Brando, O'Toole, DDL

DeNiro lost his spot somewhere around 1997.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

DeNiro
Pacino
Holden
Lemmon
Chan
Willis
Pitt
Washington
Eastwood
Schwarzenegger

In no real order.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeremy

OH MY GOD I FORGOT TOM HANKS

I'M SORRY, TOM HANKS, YOU ETERNALLY LIKABLE MAN

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJeremy

I'd probably have to make two separate lists, because there are actors who have given performances that have left me floored (DDL would fit into this category), and then there are actors who I simply *like* in every single movie. If I made a favorite actors list, it would be mostly all from this latter category, but I'd feel guilty about leaving out people like DDL who has, again, given some of the best performances I've ever seen, but the sheer virtuosity of his abilities kind of makes him somehow less charismatic to me. I don't know if that makes sense.

But anyway, these are some actors who I find fascinating regardless of the roles and movies they do (in particular order):

Peter Sellers
Bill Murray
Tony Leung
Max von Sydow
Jeff Bridges
Gene Kelly
Cary Grant
Chishu Ryu
Peter O'Toole
Jeremy Irons
Steve Buscemi
David Thewlis
Donald Sutherland
Martin Landau
Jean-Louis Trintignant
Viggo Mortensen
Gene Hackman
Paul Giamatti
Henry Fonda
Robert Mitchum

And especially over the past 3 years, John Hawkes.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEdwin

John T: On DeNiro, I could buy "if the world ended after 1995", at the earliest, because saying what you said would imply one of two things 1. You don't like Heat in any way (something that I would think is near impossible) or 2. You haven't seen Heat yet.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I'm surprised that Brad Pitt is so far up your list! For me, he's more of a like/hate thing. Love his physical charisma and dynamo in Fight Club, Se7en, Moneyball, etc.; find him unbearably boring, stilted, and even unintentionally hilarious in Assassination of Jesse James, Benjamin Button, etc. The dude has a certain niche.

In no particular order:

Ralph Fiennes (have we ever seen a bad performance? Or a more generous onscreen lover? How many of his lady costars have been nominated for or won Oscars?)

Christian Bale (intermittent adoration to the highest degree/unfathomably frustrated. Curiously, I feel the same way about the actor's offscreen life)

Humphrey Bogart

Al Pacino

Gene Hackman

Tony Leung Chiu-Wai

Daniel Day-Lewis

Sir Ian McKellan

Harvey Keitel (why does no one talk about him anymore?) :(

Cillian Murphy

Edward Norton (still far and away the best actor of his generation, with the worse career of any of his peers)

Bill Murray

Nicholas Cage

Kidding on the last one. This is fun. Can we have a thread sometime where we discuss how our filmsexuality came about and how our lives personally or professionally connect to the movies?

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commentercaroline

I know he's part of the at this moment section and had a couple solid performances this year, but I still find it hilarious that Tatum makes top 50 over actors like DiCaprio, Pacino, Bardem, etc. I guess we all have our eccentric loves, blinded by things perhaps other than their acting talent. For instance, I might put Emile Hirsch and James McAvoy in my top 50, though their work doesn't necessarily merit the inclusion.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAdam

Edwin: That makes perfect sense, and when I think of greatEST movie stars, especially for a top ten list, I'd place two things above all else: Perception of charm and perception of range. I'd heartily disagree with his top two, arguing they never really had much in the way of range. They're so good at what they do that they'd both get...somewhere...in my top 100 males, but James Stewart? That's what I look for in a star. Charming enough to excite the populace all the way through his career, but with enough of a range of what a good performance from him is to interest jack of all trades cinephiles, with no particular stake or hatred toward any specific genre.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Adam -- i get what you're saying which is why i separated them. Last time i had an "at the moment" thing it didn't work out so well for half the list. BUT when you are passionately into someone at a given point it feels weird to shut them out.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternathanielr

i just realized i forgot WILLIS who i love even in shitty movies.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenternathanielr

caroline: No one talks about him anymore because it's been twenty years since Reservoir Dogs and Bad Lieutenant, nineteen years since The Piano, eighteen years since Pulp Fiction and, if you want to stretch what a great film or performance is, seventeen years since playing the cigar store owner Augustus "Auggie" Wren in Smoke and Blue in the Face. He might have come back, with his 1997-1999 run (especially given Cop Land, Lulu on the Bridge and Holy Smoke!) suggesting an upswing, but appearing in Little Nicky killed all his momentum.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I'm in!

Since we're talking personal favourites

Top three

Toshiro Mifune - far greater range as an actor than usually given credit for. In his younger days an utter hottie
Tatsuya Nakadai - the yin to Mifune's yang - the consummate actor
Tony Leung Chiu Wai - subtle, funny, sexy as hell - please God, give him his career back

Then in no particular order
Montgomery Clift - no need to spell this out
Anthony Wong - a mainstay of Hong Kong film. Even if everything else in the film is nonsense you can just watch him
Lau Ching Wan - see Wong
Alain Delon - in his charming psychopath roles
Cary Grant - see Clift
Roger Livesey - Powell and Pressberger regular, charm on a stick, wish he'd made more films
Buster Keaton - yeah

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterHelena

DiCaprio
Oldman
Brando
C Grant

THE END

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSofie

I'm legitimately afraid that I'll never love another person as much as I love James Dean. Paul Newman and Montgomery Clift run for a (distant) second-place tie.

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJoe K

Where's is Clooney? How do you feel about him?

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCarl

Fun and more difficult than I thought it would be when I first started. My 50 fav actresses, which I put after was a snap in comparison.
My top ten
1. James Mason-Could listen to him for hours, Holds true for my top three.
2. Claude Rains
3. Alan Rickman
4. Richard Widmark
5. John Garfield
6. Alan Bates
7. Jason Robards Jr.
8. Colin Farrell
9. Jake Gyllenhaal
10. Sydney Greenstreet

Just missing the top in no particular order
11. James Cagney
12. Jimmy Stewart
13. Montgomery Clift
14. Cary Grant
15. Rupert Graves
16. Clive Owen
17. Gary Sinise
18. Peter O'Toole
19. Russell Crowe
20. Edward G. Robinson

Enjoy but don't necessarily see all their work
21. Spencer Tracy
22. Gregory Peck
23. Kevin Kline
24. Dustin Hoffman
25. Brad Pitt
26. Robert Mitchum
27. Gary Cooper
28. Campbell Scott
29. Jack Lemmon
30. Burt Lancaster

Fine actors all just not the top for me
31. Humphrey Bogart
32. Laurence Olivier
33. George C. Scott
34. William Powell
35. Tom Hardy-the best of the new crop of actors
36. Henry Fonda
37. Daniel Day-Lewis
38. Gene Hackman
39. Fredric March
40. Steve Zahn
41. Rock Hudson
42. James Dean
43. Ian McKellan
44. Albert Finney
45. Ryan Gosling
46. Colin Firth
47. Til Schweiger
48. Bobby Cannavale
49. William Holden
50. Javier Bardem

Top 50 actresses: so much easier although except for the top 10 much harder to order, it could change daily, and it could have included 50 more actresses.

1. Linda Darnell-Perhaps not the greatest actresses ever, although when given the opportunity she was pretty damn great, but my love for her is enduring and everlasting.
2. Julie Christie-the greatest living actress
3. Ida Lupino
4. Barbra Streisand
5. Susan Hayward
6. Thelma Ritter
7. Suzanne Pleshette
8. Eve Arden
9. Jacqueline Bissett
10. Priscilla Lane

11. Emma Thompson
12. Gloria Grahame
13. Diane Lane
14. Jane Fonda
15. Judy Garland
16. Doris Day
17. Barbara Stanwyck
18. Bette Davis
19. Kate Winslet
20. Joan Crawford
21. Marilyn Monroe
22. Christine Lahti
23. Sigourney Weaver
24. Anne Bancroft
25. Sally Field
26. Joan Plowright
27. Veronica Lake
28. Gena Rowlands
29. Laura Linney
30. Maggie Smith
31. Vanessa Redgrave
32. Alfre Woodard
33. Debbie Reynolds
34. Angelica Huston
35. Ellen Burstyn
36. Julianne Moore
37. Ingrid Bergman
38. Judy Holliday
39. Claire Trevor
40. Rosalind Russell
41. Inger Stevens
42. Jean Simmons
43. Margaret Sullavan
44. Sissy Spacek
45. Helen Mirren
46. Geraldine Page
47. Connie Gilchrist
48. Diana Rigg
49. Lee Remick
50. Natalie Wood

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterjoel6

I fell in love with movies because of "Singing in the Rain".... I really have to work on the actor list

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

First of all, all the Internet points to Helena for mentioning Roger Livesey! I absolutely adore him.

Roughly my top 20, in no particular order except for number one:

1. William Holden

Gene Kelly
Michael Fassbender (unless he flames out something spectacular, he's an all-timer for me already)
Robert Mitchum
Kenneth Branagh
Leslie Howard
David Strathairn
Chris Cooper
Tom Wilkinson
Ewan McGregor
Guy Pearce
Christian Bale
Humphrey Bogart
Jeff Bridges
Daniel Day-Lewis
William Powell
Joseph Cotten
Gregory Peck
Spencer Tracy
James Stewart

Could easily end up all-time favorites depending on career trajectory:

Tom Hardy
Ben Mendelsohn
Ryan Gosling
James McAvoy
Tom Hiddleston
Joel Edgerton
Michael Stuhlbarg
John Hawkes
Oscar Isaac
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Cillian Murphy
Joaquin Phoenix
Paul Schneider

Used to worship but have sadly had to drop off the list due to unfortunate choices

Russell Crowe
Johnny Depp
Clive Owen

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLiz N.

My top 20 actors in alphabetical order
:
Richard Burton
Tom Cruise
Alain Delon
Peter Finch
Cary Grant
Dustin Hoffman
John Seymour Hoffman
William Holden
Burt Lancaster
Marcello Mastroianni
Jack Nicholson
Paul Newman
Anthony Perkins
Paul Rudd
Jorge Sanz
Peter Sarsgaard
Kevin Spacey
James Stewart
Peter Ustinov
Oskar Werner

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTrippy Trellis

My TOP 30 ALIVE:
1. Jack Nicholson
2. Daniel Day-Lewis
3. Robert De Niro
4. Dustin Hoffman
5. Sean Penn
6. Al Pacino (really loved him until the new millenium began)
7. Russell Crowe
8. Gary Oldman
9. Denzel Washington
10. Javier Bardem
11. Tom Hanks
12. Johnny Depp
13. Philip Seymour Hoffman
14. Ryan Gosling (this man will be a legend if his performances keep the same quality level)
15. Morgan Freeman
16. Michael Caine (should stop taking unthankful supporting parts)
17. Jeff Bridges
18. Christian Bale
19. Geoffrey Rush
20. Michael Fassbender (the exciting and extremely talented new face)
21. Bill Murray (just won me forever with Lost In Translation)
22. Leonardo DiCaprio
23. Anthony Hopkins
24. Brad Pitt
25. George Clooney
26. Edward Norton
27. Joaquin Phoenix
28. Mark Ruffalo
29. Joseph Gordon-Levitt
30. Will Smith

HONORABLE MENTIONS: Ewan McGregor; Ralph Fiennes; Gael Garcia Bernal;

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEd

No order, non-comprehensive:

Henry Fonda
Burt Lancaster
Montgomery Clift
Matt Damon
Woody Harrelson
Gene Hackman
Robert Duvall

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMikhail

1. Robert DeNiro(Raging Bull and Taxi Driver)
2. Gary Oldman(Sid and Nancy and Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy)
3. Christian Bale(American Psycho and Empire of the Sun)
4. Daniel Day Lewis(There Will Be Blood and Gangs of New York)
5. Viggo Mortensen(Eastern Promises and A Dangerous Method)
6. Michael Fassbender(Shame and Hunger)
7. Tom Hardy(Bronson and Warrior)
8. Joesph Gordon Levitt(Brick and Mysterious Skin)
9. Ryan Gosling(Drive and Half Nelson)
10. Brad Pitt(The Tree of Life and Moneyball)

August 23, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

There are so many wonderful actors - I love watching them. Eras are approximate, my apologies

Contemporary: Hugh Jackman, Edward Norton, Russell Crowe, Mark Ruffalo, Joaquin Phoenix, Tom Wilkinson, Ryan Gosling, Danny Huston, Geoffry Rush, Viggo Mortensen, Mads Mikkelson, Chris Cooper, Sam Worthington, Eddie Redmayne, Steve Coogan, Chris Cooper, Tim Roth, Ciaran Hinds, George Clooney

1970s - 1990s: Gregory Hines, Harvey Keitel, Jean Reno, Warren Oates, Michael Caine, Harry Dean Stanton, Jason Robards, Alan Arkin, Peter Falk, Jack Nicholson, Gene Hackman, Kevin Spacey, John Cusack, Bruce Willis, Bruno Ganz

1950s - 1980s: Marcello Mastroianni, Jean Louis Trintignant, Jack McGowran, Alan Bates, Peter O'Toole, Yves Montand, Marlon Brando, Paul Newman, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Steve McQueen, James Coburn, Yul Brynner, Warren Beatty, Gregory Peck, Toshiro Mifune, Walter Matthau

1930s-1960s: Fred Astaire, James Mason, Alec Guiness, Humphrey Bogart, Dirk Bogarde, Peter Ustinov, Cary Grant, Burt Lancaster, Jean Marais, Alain Cuny, Jean Gabin, Spencer Tracy, David Niven, Robert Morley, Paul Muni, Ronald Colman, William Powell

Silents: Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Harold Lloyd, Max Schreck.

August 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteradri

Euh Nathaniel : MASTRANTONIO ?????????????????? do tou mean Mastroianni ??

August 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commentergilles

My Favourite 50 actors

1. Montgomery Clift
2. Steve McQueen
3. Van Heflin
4. Humphrey Bogart
5. Cary Grant
6. John Garfield
7. William Powell
8. Jack Lemmon
9. Robert Redford
10. Peter Lorre
11. Robert Mitchum
12. Michael Caine
13. Dana Andrews
14. Fredric March
15. Robert Shaw
16. Basil Rathbone
17. Al Pacino
18. Robert De Niro
19. Kirk Douglas
20. Burt Lancaster
21. Gilbert Roland
22. Zachary Scott
23. Lee Marvin
24. John Mills
25. Bob Hope
26. Robert Ryan
27. James Garner
28. Alec Guinness
29. Claude Rains
30. Gene Wilder
31. Alastair Sim
32. Ethan Hawke
33. Arthur Kennedy
34. Douglass Montgomery
35. Matt Damon
36. Bruce Willis
37. James Cagney
38. Peter Sellers
39. Stanley Baker
40. Laurence Harvey
41. George Sanders
42. Tom Cruise
43. Edward G Robinson
44. Johnny Depp
45. Sydney Greenstreet
46. Dan Duryea
47. Clifton Webb
48. Stephen Boyd
49. Charles Laughton
50. Lionel Atwill

August 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAnthony

anthony -- well done. that was saved on your harddrive or from memory ? ;) but a good reminder of people i maybe should've considered. This might be easier to do by decade actually

gilles -- i know. silly me

August 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNathaniel R

Easily ruling the category of performances that floored me, but I don't generally love him, is Anthony Hopkins. Stevens the Butler is quite possibly the greatest performance of all time. But the Hannibal persona consumed his career and while he's never bad, he hasn't had the dominant career he should have.

August 24, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSawyer

As I just found this great Web site this past week, I wasn't able to post my list of fave actresses, so forgive me, but I'll do that here...

In chronological order...

Bette Davis, Greer Garson, Jennifer Jones, Audrey Hepburn, Julie Andrews, Julie Christie, Ellen Burstyn, Diane Keaton, Marsha Mason and Jessica Lange

Honorable mentions: Greta Garbo, Myrna Loy, Ingrid Bergman, Anne Bancroft, Jane Fonda, Genevieve Bujold, Christine Lahti, Nicole Kidman and Toni Collette

August 24, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

My favorite actors (in no order):

Sean Penn
Edward Norton
Kevin Spacey
Sam Rockwell
Peter Sarsgaard
Al Pacino
Robert De Niro
Dustin Hoffman
Denzel Washington
Johnny Depp
Leonardo DiCaprio
Matt Damon
Gary Oldman
Philip Seymour Hoffman
Steve Buscemi
Jack Nicholson
Will Smith
Ewan McGregor
Brad Pitt
Ryan Gosling
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
Tom Hanks
Michael Fassbender
Robert Downey Jr.

August 25, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMeghan

brookesboy -- WELCOME! I love the idea of listing favorites in chronological order. perhaps i should adopt it

August 25, 2012 | Registered CommenterNATHANIEL R
Comments for this entry have been disabled. Additional comments may not be added to this entry at this time.