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Top 10 Russell Crowe Films

As promised (though a little late... sorry been busy) I present to you all my Top 10 Favorite Russell Crowe films.  #10 being my 10th favorite, #1 being my all-time favorite.  If you've been following all the reviews for the past couple months then not much of this list will be a surprise, but I am interested in hearing what your picks are!

Last Updated 11/25/10

Out of all my favorite Russell Crowe films this one receives the least amount repeat viewings.  It's a marvelously well crafted and cast film, but it's one I usually don't gravitate to much simply because I find it to be somewhat of a chore to sit through if I'm only looking for a fast moving entertaining adventure.  Don't get me wrong it's a great film, but it's probably one of Crowe's more taxing films to watch.

Out of all the Robin Hood films I've seen Ridley Scott's vision is definitely the best.  Still I feel the film could have been better and would have loved to of seen that usual gritty action we've learn to expect from Ridley's films.  If a sequel ever gets made I'll definitely be there to see it!

The oldest film on the list is Russell in one of my favorite westerns, and his first real breakthrough role into American cinema.  I guess we have Sharon Stone to thank for that, although I'm quite sure Russell would have made it sooner or later without her requesting he be cast.  This is simply a fun film minus all the talking and riding that makes westerns long and boring.  With a cast of great actors, if you can't sit down and enjoy this campy western then there's no hope for you.

#7 L.A. Confidential (1997)
Undoubtedly the quintessential crime thriller, at least I've never seen better.  L.A. Confidential manages to weave lots of characters and side stories all into one big package that comes together nicely in the end.

This film easily ranks among Russell's and Ridley most underrated projects.  A Good Year is simply a breath of fresh air to the extremely stale romantic comedy genre.  I love everything about this film, the cast, the music, the story and the locations.  It's a film I love to watch when I'm frustrated with life and need a good pick me up.  After watching this I always wish I could move to France and live on grape vineyard, since that will probably never happen this film at least helps to give my mind a mental vacation.

#5 The Next Three Days (2010)
This is the first Russell Crowe film in years where I can honestly say everything fit together almost perfectly.  Crowe's performance is amazing, and the emotional struggle he portrays on the screen hearkens back to the type of gutsy performances he gave in two of my favorites, A Beautiful Mind and Cinderella Man.  Top it all off with a thrilling and suspenseful story, and a great supporting cast and you have Crowe's best thriller to date.

Russell needs to make more westerns, 3:10 To Yuma is proof of that.  While the majority of the film may not be anything remarkable, the final 30 minutes is some of the most gripping and entertaining cinema I've seen in a long time.  Russell Crowe and Ben Foster are nothing short of amazing, as Crowe makes you almost start rooting for him (the bad guy) and Ben Foster is his insane sidekick you love to hate.

The film that made Russell Crowe and Joaquin Phoenix mega movie stars.  What can I honestly say about Gladiator that you all don't already know? Amazing film.  That sums it up.

In my opinion this film showcases Russell's best performance, a performance that definitely warranted a second Oscar.  With another stellar cast, enthralling story, mesmerizing soundtrack and great direction by Ron Howard, A Beautiful Mind is worth every minute.

A true underdog story.  If you're looking for an inspiring film I don't think you can find a more uplifting account of a truly good and upstanding person rejuvenating his tired and beaten career for one last dance to literally bring his family out of the gutter.  Cinderella Man is another Russell Crowe film that was sorely over looked by the critics when it came out, barely getting any notice on the awards circuit, but for me it's one of the few films where the ending chokes me up every time, truly a special film. Not only is this my favorite Russell Crowe film, it's my favorite film altogether.  Ron Howard and Russell Crowe really need to get together more often.


  1. I've only seen 4/10 of these, so I can't comment all that much, but no L.A. Confidential? Really?

  2. @Fletch - egad! I forgot that one. See this is what happens when people rush me... you know who you are. I will make adjustments.

  3. (hanging her head in shame...) :) you couldn't have a tie between two films somewhere? i won't argue with any of your placements; after all, they're YOUR favorites and it's your site, and i don't really disagree all that much anyway.
    i'm so pleased to see 'a good year' in your top ten list! it's one of my favorites of russell's films, very seriously misunderstood by the critics, generally ignored by the public who wanted more blood and guts from rid & russ' second film together, and dismissed as fluff by just about everyone.
    i would move 'master & commander, etc.' much closer to the top of my list; i have watched it more than any of the others, but as a european history buff, i guess that's to be expected. it's not my favorite of all, but i think russell's performance in this is about as good as any he's done.
    'a beautiful mind', the film where russell was robbed of his second oscar by a wave of political correctness, certainly deserves to be high on anyone's list of his best. that insulin-shock scene blows me away every time i watch it.
    and then there's 'yuma' and bad boy ben wade. yow. yow. yum. i don't completely understand the appeal of a bad man, but if you throw intelligence, humor and cynicism into the mix, it's a powerful attractant. and he sure sits nicely on a horse.
    i've commented on my reaction to 'cinderella man' under that film's review, and i won't reiterate here. i couldn't place it first for various reasons, none of which has to do with russell's stellar, heart-wrenching and nuanced performance.
    good choices. i've enjoyed this series immensely. when 'the next three days' comes out in september, i'll be looking for your review. previews have had a terrific positive early response, so i'm excited.

  4. @becks - actually it worked out quite well all the films on the list were the highest ratings of 8-10, everything else was 7 and under so all my true favorites made the list. Sadly none of his early films made the cut, although I did have Heaven's Burning on the list before I realized I left LA Confidential off.

    The Next Three Days comes out in September? It says November 19th on

  5. oh. maybe i'm misremembering. happens as you age, you know.
    (a few seconds later, checking her sources) yep - you're right. november 19. drat.
    i saw that you had 'heaven's burning at number 10 for a bit. i almost told a friend of mine who is a huge colin fan, but i guess it's a good thing i didn't rush off to do that!

  6. I would put Gladiator and LA Confidential at the top. Although Crowe gave a superb performance in A Beautiful Mind, the movie itself was a downer for me. I did enjoy Cinderella Man but not on the level of a Gladiator for example.

    1. Gladiator
    2. LA Confidential
    3. 3:10 to Yuma
    4. Master and Commander
    5. State of Play
    6. Robin Hood
    7. Cinderella Man
    8. A Beautiful Mind
    9. The Insider
    10. Body of Lies

    (I haven't seen A Good Year so far)

  7. Good choices and I like that you included A Good Year because that film has a pleasant mood and a fun film score...most critics didn't like it because it had no projectile vomiting ,or penis jokes in it.Another great Crowe film is ,Proof,which he won an Australian Oscar for best supporting actor. Proof is a love/lust triangle story,with good dialogue and pacing. I also like ,for the heck of it, Mystery,Alaska,it has a good ensemble cast, funny material and Crowe.


  9. Just watched Gladiator 12 years later from its making. The movie is one the best films i have seen in my life. It is so meaningful and is very thought out. The ending was a bummer but overall GLADIATOR. Best scene when he takes of his helmet.


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