Outstanding performances in movies since 1990by grevevondy | created - 28 Jan 2012 | updated - 28 Aug 2013 | Public
This is a list that mentions both commonly good and bad actors and actresses that have made fantastic portrayals in one or several movies. Even though I really dislike, let's say, most of the work by Charlie Sheen, he made some pretty good work in "Platoon" but not that great to make it on this list (yes, I know it was made in 1986). Hope you enjoy!
Actor | Fargo
Steve Buscemi was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Dorothy (Wilson), a restaurant hostess, and John Buscemi, a sanitation worker. He is of Italian (father) and English, Dutch, and Irish (mother) descent. He became interested in acting during his last year of high school. After graduating, he moved to...
Norther Winslow in "Big Fish"
Actor | Inception
Few actors in the world have had a career quite as diverse as Leonardo DiCaprio's. DiCaprio has gone from relatively humble beginnings, as a supporting cast member of the sitcom Growing Pains (1985) and low budget horror movies, such as Critters 3 (1991), to a major teenage heartthrob in the 1990s,...
Arnie Grape in "What's Eating Gilbert Grape" Howard Hughes in "The Aviator"
Actress | Les Misérables
Helena Bonham Carter is an actress of great versatility, one of the UK's finest and most successful.
Bonham Carter was born May 26, 1966 in Golders Green, London, England, the youngest of three children of Elena (née Propper de Callejón), a psychotherapist, and Raymond Bonham Carter, a merchant ...
Bellatrix Lestrange in "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" and more Harry Potter-movies
4. Brad Pitt
Actor | Mr. & Mrs. Smith
An actor and producer known as much for his versatility as he is for his handsome face, Golden Globe-winner Brad Pitt's most widely recognized role may be Tyler Durden in Fight Club (1999). However, his portrayals of Billy Beane in Moneyball (2011), and Rusty Ryan in the remake of Ocean's Eleven (...
Jeffrey Goines in "Twelve Monkeys"
Actor | The Sixth Sense
Haley Joel Osment is an American actor who has proven himself as one of the best young actors of his generation. He is the first millennial male to have received an Academy Award nomination for acting.
Osment was born in Los Angeles, California, to Theresa (Seifert), a teacher, and actor Eugene ...
Cole Sear in "The Sixth Sense"
Actor | The Dark Knight
Christian Charles Philip Bale was born in Pembrokeshire, Wales, UK on January 30, 1974, to English parents Jennifer "Jenny" (James) and David Charles Howard Bale. His mother was a circus performer and his father, who was born in South Africa, was a commercial pilot. The family lived in different ...
Dicky Eklund in "The Fighter" Patrick Bateman in "American Psycho"
Actress | Requiem for a Dream
Ellen Burstyn was born in Detroit, Michigan, to Correine Marie (Hamel) and John Austin Gillooly. She is of mostly Irish, German, and French-Canadian descent. Ellen worked a number of jobs before she became an actress. At 14, she was a short-order cook at a lunch counter. After graduating from ...
Sara Goldfarb in "Requiem for a Dream"
Actor | Reservoir Dogs
American actor and producer Harvey Keitel was born on May 13, 1939 in Brooklyn, New York City. An Oscar and Golden Globe Award nominee, he has appeared in films such as Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets (1973) and Taxi Driver (1976), Ridley Scott's The Duellists (1977) and Thelma & Louise (1991), ...
Winston 'The Wolf' Wolfe in "Pulp Fiction"
9. Tim Roth
Actor | Pulp Fiction
Often mistaken for an American because of his skill at imitating accents, actor Tim Roth was born Timothy Simon Roth on May 14, 1961 in Lambeth, London, England. His mother, Ann, was a teacher and landscape painter. His father, Ernie, was a journalist who had changed the family name from "Smith" to ...
Mr. Orange/Freddy Newandyke in "Reservoir Dogs"
10. Ewan McGregor
Actor | Moulin Rouge!
Ewan Gordon McGregor was born on March 31, 1971 in Perth, Perthshire, Scotland, to Carol Diane (Lawson) and James Charles McGregor, both teachers. His uncle is actor Denis Lawson. He was raised in Crieff. At age 16, he left Morrison Academy to join the Perth Repertory Theatre. His parents ...
Ed Bloom - Young in "Big Fish"
11. Carmen Maura
Descendant of the conservative Spanish politician Antonio Maura, Carmen lead an art gallery and appeared in various roles in night- clubs. With Tigres de papel (1977) she had her first successful appearance on the movie screen and thereafter she worked at the theatre, the movies and in TV ...
Irene in "Volver"
12. Natalie Portman
Actress | Black Swan
Natalie Portman is the first person born in the 1980s to have won the Academy Award for Best Actress (for Black Swan (2010)).
Natalie was born Natalie Hershlag on June 9, 1981, in Jerusalem, Israel. She is the only child of Avner Hershlag, an Israeli-born doctor, and Shelley Stevens, an ...
Nina Sayers in "Black Swan" Mathilda in "Léon"
13. Aaron Eckhart
Actor | The Dark Knight
Aaron Eckhart was born on March 12, 1968 in Cupertino, California, USA as Aaron Edward Eckhart. He is an actor and producer, known for The Dark Knight (2008), Thank You for Smoking (2005) and In the Company of Men (1997).
Nick Naylor in "Thank You for Smoking"
14. Heath Ledger
Actor | Brokeback Mountain
When hunky, twenty-year-old heart-throb Heath Ledger first came to the attention of the public in 1999, it was all too easy to tag him as a "pretty boy" and an actor of little depth. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword. His work comprised ...
The Joker in "The Dark Knight"
15. Jamie Foxx
Actor | Django Unchained
Jamie Foxx is an American actor, singer and comedian. He won an Academy Award for Best Actor, BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy, for his work in the biographical film Ray (2004). The same year, he was nominated for the Academy...
Ray Charles in "Ray"
16. Ulrich Mühe
Actor | Das Leben der Anderen
Ulrich Mühe was born on June 20, 1953 in Grimma, East Germany as Friedrich Hans Ulrich Mühe. He was an actor and director, known for The Lives of Others (2006), Funny Games (1997) and Der letzte Zeuge (1998). He was married to Susanne Lothar, Jenny Gröllmann and Annegret Hahn. He died on July 22, ...
Gerd Wiesler in "Das Leben der Anderen"
17. Hilary Swank
Actress | Boys Don't Cry
Hilary was born in Lincoln, Nebraska, to Judith Kay (Clough), a secretary, and Stephen Michael Swank, who served in the National Guard and was also a traveling salesman. Her maternal grandmother, Frances Martha Dominguez, was of Mexican descent, and her other roots include German, English, and ...
Brandon Teena in "Boys Don't Cry"
18. Kevin Spacey
Actor | The Usual Suspects
Kevin Spacey Fowler, better known by his stage name Kevin Spacey, is an American actor of screen and stage, film director, producer, screenwriter and singer. He began his career as a stage actor during the 1980s before obtaining supporting roles in film and television. He gained critical acclaim in...
Verbal Kint in "The Usual Suspects" Lester Burnham in "American Beauty"
19. Edward Norton
Actor | American History X
American actor, filmmaker and activist Edward Harrison Norton was born on August 18, 1969, in Boston, Massachusetts, and was raised in Columbia, Maryland.
His mother, Lydia Robinson "Robin" (Rouse), was a foundation executive and teacher of English, and a daughter of famed real estate developer ...
Derek Vinyard in "American History X"
20. Steve Evets
Actor | Looking for Eric
Steve Evets was born in 1960 in Salford, Lancashire, England as Steven Murphy. He is an actor, known for Looking for Eric (2009), Robin Hood (2010) and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011).
Eric Bishop in "Looking for Eric"
21. Min-sik Choi
Actor | Oldeuboi
Choi Min-shik first made a name for himself in theater before breaking into the film world with a role in Park Chong-won's acclaimed film 'Our Twisted Hero' (1992). In the mid-nineties he continued to act in theater productions as well as in several TV dramas, including Moon Over Seoul with Han ...
Oh Dae-su in "Oldboy"
22. Annette Bening
Actress | American Beauty
Annette Carol Bening was born on May 29, 1958 in Topeka, Kansas, the youngest of four children of Shirley (Ashley), a soloist and church singer, and Arnett Grant Bening, an insurance salesman. She is of German and British Isles ancestry. Her family moved to California when she was young, and she ...
Carolyn Burnham in "American Beauty" Nic in "The Kids Are All Right"
23. Norma Aleandro
Actress | La historia oficial
Norma Aleandro is the Grande Dame of Argentine theater and cinema not only because she was not content to have trodden the stage as early as the the age of nine, she is still active in theater and cinema in 2011. Her last film to date, Daniel Burman's La suerte en tus manos (2012) is in ...
Norma Belvedere in "El hijo de la novia"
24. Sam Riley
Actor | Control
Sam Riley was born on January 8, 1980 in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England. He is an actor, known for Control (2007), Maleficent (2014) and On the Road (2012). He has been married to Alexandra Maria Lara since August 2009. They have one child.
Ian Curtis in "Control"
Actress | The Hunger Games
The highest-paid actress in the world, with her films grossing over $5.5 billion worldwide, Jennifer Lawrence is often cited as the most successful actor of her generation. She is thus far the only person born in the 1990s to have won an acting Oscar.
Jennifer Shrader Lawrence was born August 15, ...
Ree in "Winter's Bone"
26. Colin Farrell
Actor | The Lobster
Colin Farrell is one of Ireland's best rising stars in Hollywood and abroad today. His film presence has been filled with memorable roles that range from an inwardly tortured hit man, to an adventurous explorer, a determined-but-failing writer, and the greatest military leader in history.
Ray in "In Bruges"
27. Benicio Del Toro
Actor | Sicario
Benicio Del Toro emerged in the mid-1990s as one of the most watchable and charismatic character actors to come along in years. A favorite of film buffs, Del Toro gained mainstream public attention as the conflicted but basically honest Mexican policeman in Steven Soderbergh's Traffic (2000).
Fred Fenster in "The Usual Suspects"
28. Stephen Baldwin
Actor | The Usual Suspects
Stephen Baldwin was born on May 12, 1966 in Massapequa, Long Island, New York, USA as Stephen Andrew Baldwin. He is an actor and producer, known for The Usual Suspects (1995), Bio-Dome (1996) and The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas (2000). He has been married to Kennya Baldwin since June 10, 1990. ...
Michael McManus in "The Usual Suspects"
29. Javier Bardem
Actor | Skyfall
Javier Bardem is the youngest member of a family of actors that has been making films since the early days of Spanish cinema.
He was born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain, to actress Pilar Bardem (María del Pilar Bardem Muñoz) and businessman José Carlos Encinas Doussinague. His maternal ...
Anton Chigurh in "No Country for Old Men"
30. Sergi López
Actor | El laberinto del fauno
Sergi López is a Spanish actor, whose specialty is villains of all types but whose range also includes dramatizing romantic and comedic roles with equal mastery. He was born outside of Barcelona in the seaside town of Villanova i la Geltrú on December 22nd, 1965. As a youth he was inclined towards ...
Capitán Vidal in "El laberinto del fauno"
31. Noomi Rapace
Actress | Män som hatar kvinnor
Swedish actress Noomi Rapace was born in Hudiksvall, Gävleborgs län, Sweden, the daughter of Swedish actress Nina Norén and Spanish Flamenco singer Rogelio Durán. Her parents did not stay together, and when Rapace was five she moved to Iceland with her mother and stepfather, where she lived for ...
Lisbeth Salander in "Män som hatar kvinnor"
32. Gary Oldman
Actor | Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Gary Oldman is a talented English movie star and character actor, renowned for his "big" acting style. One of the most celebrated thespians of his generation, with a diverse career encompassing theatre, film and television, he is known for his roles as Sid Vicious in Sid and Nancy (1986), Drexl in ...
Stansfield in "Léon"
33. Russell Crowe
Actor | Les Misérables
Russell Ira Crowe was born in Wellington, New Zealand, to Jocelyn Yvonne (Wemyss) and John Alexander Crowe, both of whom catered movie sets. His maternal grandfather, Stanley Wemyss, was a cinematographer. Crowe's recent ancestry includes Welsh (where his paternal grandfather was born, in Wrexham),...
John Nash in "A Beautiful Mind"
34. Glenn Close
Actress | Fatal Attraction
Six time Academy Award-nominated actress Glenn Close was born and raised in Greenwich, Connecticut. She is the daughter of Bettine (Moore) and William Taliaferro Close (William Close), a prominent doctor. Both of her parents were from upper-class northeastern families.
Glenn was often seen on ...
Cruella De Vil in "101 Dalmatians"
35. Trey Parker
Music_department | South Park
Trey was born in Conifer, Colorado, on October 19, 1969 to Randy Parker, a geologist, and Sharon Parker, an insurance broker. He has an older sister, Shelley Parker. He met Matt Stone (co-creator of South Park (1997)) while attending the University of Colorado in Boulder, where he had a double ...
The voice of Matt Damon in "Team America: World Police" The voice of Kim Jong Il in "Team America: World Police"
36. Roberto Benigni
Actor | La vita è bella
Roberto Benigni was born on October 27, 1952 in Manciano La Misericordia, Castiglion Fiorentino, Tuscany, Italy as Roberto Remigio Benigni. He is an actor and writer, known for Life Is Beautiful (1997), La tigre e la neve (2005) and Down by Law (1986). He has been married to Nicoletta Braschi since...
Guido Orefice in "La vita è bella"
37. Gösta Ekman
Actor | Mannen som slutade röka
His career began with a bit part at Skansenteatern in Hjalmar Bergman's play 'Markurells i Wadköping' in 1955. The following year he debuted in the movie Swing it, fröken (1956) playing against Alice Babs. He got speech lessons from actress Sif Ruud and worked behind the camera in his father's...
Pompe in "Skenbart: en film om tåg"
38. Alan Rickman
Actor | Die Hard
Alan Rickman was born on a council estate in Acton, West London, to Margaret Doreen Rose (Bartlett) and Bernard Rickman, who worked at a factory. He had English, Irish, and Welsh ancestry. Alan had an older brother David, a younger brother Michael and a younger sister Sheila. When Alan was 8 years ...
Severus Snape in all Harry Potter-movies
39. Vinnie Jones
Actor | Snatch
Vincent Peter Jones was born on January 5, 1965 in Watford, England. He first came to public notice as a professional footballer, playing in the English Football League. Noted as one of soccer's hard men, he leaped to fame when a photographer, at a match, snapped him "marking" Newcastle United's ...
Big Chris in "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels"
40. Stephen Graham
Actor | This Is England
Stephen Graham was born August 3, 1973, in the small town of Kirkby, Lancashire, to a pediatric nurse mother and a social worker father. His paternal grandfather was Jamaican, and one of his grandmothers was Swedish. After years of small parts, he finally got his big break in an unexpected way, ...
Combo in "This Is England"
41. Fred Armisen
Music_department | Portlandia
Fred Armisen was born on December 4, 1966 in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, USA as Fereydun Robert Armisen. He is known for his work on Portlandia (2011), Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004) and Documentary Now! (2015). He was previously married to Elisabeth Moss and Sally Timms.
Creepy Italian Guy in "Eurotrip"
42. Eddie Murphy
Actor | The Nutty Professor
Edward Regan Murphy was born April 3, 1961 in Brooklyn, New York, to Lillian (Laney), a telephone operator, and Charles Edward Murphy, a transit police officer who was also an amateur comedian and actor. After his father died, his mother married Vernon Lynch, a foreman at a Breyer's Ice Cream plant...
The voice of Donkey in "Shrek"
43. Nigel Lindsay
Actor | Four Lions
Nigel Lindsay was born on 17th January 1969 and entered into the world of acting comparatively late. For three years he was a financial analyst in the City in his native London but, on his own admission, hated it and applied almost simultaneously for the law and the stage. He had a place at bar ...
Barry in "Four Lions"
44. Kayvan Novak
Actor | Four Lions
Waj in "Four Lions"
45. Katie Jarvis
Actress | Fish Tank
Mia in "Fish Tank"
British actor and comedian Sacha Baron Cohen was born in Hammersmith, London. He is the son of Daniella (Weiser), a movement instructor, and Gerald Baron Cohen, a clothing store owner. His father, born in England and raised in Wales, was of Eastern European Jewish descent, while his mother was born...
Borat in "Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan" Thénardier in "Les Misérables"
47. Rhys Ifans
Actor | The Amazing Spider-Man
Rhys Ifans was born and raised in Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, Wales, the son of teacher parents, Beti Wyn (Davies) and Eirwyn Evans. He was educated in two Welsh language schools - Ysgol Pentrecelyn, where his mother taught, and Ysgol Maes Garmon. During his childhood, Ifans showed an interest in...
Spike in "Notting Hill"
48. Christoph Waltz
Actor | Django Unchained
Christoph Waltz is an Austrian-German actor. He is known for his works with American filmmaker Quentin Tarantino, receiving acclaim for portraying SS-Standartenführer Hans Landa in Inglourious Basterds (2009) and bounty hunter Dr. King Schultz in Django Unchained (2012). For each performance, he ...
Hans Landa in "Inglourious Basterds" Dr. King Schultz in "Django Unchained"
49. Jay Baruchel
Actor | Goon
Jay Baruchel was born in Ottawa, Ontario, and was raised in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He is the son of Robyne (Ropell), a freelance writer, and Serge Victor Baruchel, an antiques dealer. He has a younger sister who also acts. He started acting in 1995 when he made his first of three appearances on ...
Danger Barch in "Million Dollar Baby"
50. Amy Adams
Actress | Arrival
Amy Lou Adams was born in Vicenza, Veneto, Italy, to American parents, Kathryn (Hicken) and Richard Kent Adams, a U.S. serviceman who was stationed at Caserma Ederle in Italy at the time. She was raised in a Mormon family of seven children in Castle Rock, Colorado, and has English, as well as ...
Charlene Fleming in "The Fighter"
51. Sharlto Copley
Actor | District 9
Sharlto Copley was born in Johannesburg, South Africa, to Linda Stocks and Bruce Copley, a former university professor. His childhood dreams of acting were put on hold for many years when his television production company was one of few in his native South Africa granted licensing to create content...
Wikus Van De Merwe in "District 9" Murdock in "The A-Team"
52. Xosha Roquemore
Actress | Precious
Joann in "Precious"
Actress | Precious
Monique received a standing ovation when she stepped on stage for the first time in her hometown of Baltimore, Maryland, giving her confidence to pursue a career as a stand-up comedian. After numerous stand-up performances, she took a leap forward with one of the starring roles in The Parkers (1999)...
Mary in "Precious"
54. Kate Winslet
Actress | Titanic
Ask Kate Winslet what she likes about any of her characters, and the word "ballsy" is bound to pop up at least once. The British actress has made a point of eschewing straightforward pretty-girl parts in favor of more devilish damsels; as a result, she's built an eclectic resume that runs the gamut...
Clementine Kruczynski in "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind"
55. Mark Ruffalo
Actor | The Avengers
Mark Ruffalo was born in Kenosha, Wisconsin, to Marie Rose (Hebert), a stylist and hairdresser, and Frank Lawrence Ruffalo, a construction painter. His father's ancestry is Italian, and his mother is of half French-Canadian and half Italian descent. Mark moved with his family to Virginia Beach, ...
Stan in "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind"
56. Forest Whitaker
Actor | The Last King of Scotland
Forest Steven Whitaker has packaged a king-size talent into his hulking 6' 2", 220 lb. frame. He won an Academy Award for his performance as Ugandan dictator Idi Amin in the 2006 film The Last King of Scotland (2006), and has also won a Golden Globe and a BAFTA. He is the fourth African-American ...
Idi Amin in "The Last King of Scotland"
57. Geoffrey Rush
Actor | Shakespeare in Love
Geoffrey Roy Rush was born on July 6, 1951, in Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, to Merle (Bischof), a department store sales assistant, and Roy Baden Rush, an accountant for the Royal Australian Air Force. His mother was of German descent and his father had English, Irish, and Scottish ancestry. ...
Lionel Logue in "The King's Speech"
58. Colin Firth
Actor | A Single Man
Colin Andrew Firth was born into an academic family in Grayshott, Hampshire, England. His mother, Shirley Jean (Rolles), was a comparative religion lecturer at the Open University, and his father, David Norman Lewis Firth, lectured on history at Winchester University College (formerly King Alfred's...
King George VI in "The King's Speech"
59. Woody Harrelson
Actor | True Detective
Academy Award-nominated and Emmy Award-winning actor Woodrow Tracy Harrelson was born on July 23, 1961 in Midland, Texas, to Diane Lou (Oswald) and Charles Harrelson. He grew up in Lebanon, Ohio, where his mother was from. After receiving degrees in theater arts and English from Hanover College, he...
Roy in "Transsiberian"
60. Hugh Jackman
Actor | Les Misérables
Hugh Michael Jackman is an Australian actor, singer, multi-instrumentalist, dancer and producer. Jackman has won international recognition for his roles in major films, notably as superhero, period, and romance characters. He is best known for his long-running role as Wolverine in the X-Men film ...
Jean Valjean in "Les Misérables"
61. Eddie Redmayne
Actor | Les Misérables
British actor Eddie Redmayne is the first, and thus far only, millennial male to have won an acting Oscar (for The Theory of Everything (2014)).
Edward John David Redmayne was born and raised in London, England, the son of Patricia (Burke) and Richard Charles Tunstall Redmayne, a businessman. His ...
Marius in "Les Misérables"
62. Anne Hathaway
Actress | Les Misérables
Anne Jacqueline Hathaway was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Kate McCauley Hathaway, an actress, and Gerald T. Hathaway, a lawyer, both originally from Philadelphia. She is of mostly Irish descent, along with English, German, and French. Her first major role came in the short-lived television series ...
Fantine in "Les Misérables"
Actor | Pulp Fiction
Samuel L. Jackson is an American producer and highly prolific actor, having appeared in over 100 films, including Die Hard with a Vengeance (1995), Unbreakable (2000), Shaft (2000), Formula 51 (2001), Black Snake Moan (2006), Snakes on a Plane (2006), and the Star Wars prequel trilogy (1999-2005), ...
Jules Winnfield in "Pulp Fiction" Stephen in "Django Unchained"
64. John Travolta
Actor | Battlefield Earth
John Joseph Travolta was born in Englewood, New Jersey, one of six children of Helen Travolta (née Helen Cecilia Burke) and Salvatore/Samuel J. Travolta. His father was of Italian descent and his mother was of Irish ancestry. His father owned a tire repair shop called Travolta Tires in Hillsdale, ...
Vincent Vega in "Pulp Fiction"
65. Paul Dano
Actor | There Will Be Blood
Paul Sunday/Eli Sunday in "There Will Be Blood"
66. Daniel Day-Lewis
Actor | There Will Be Blood
Born in London, England, Daniel Michael Blake Day-Lewis is the second child of Nicholas Blake, Poet Laureate of the U.K., and his second wife, actress Jill Balcon. His maternal grandfather was Sir Michael Balcon, an important figure in the history of British cinema and head of the famous Ealing ...
Daniel Plainview in "There Will Be Blood"