George Clooney: His best performances to date

George Clooney by podium Hollywood Awards 600x243

When it comes to movie stars, few actors in Hollywood better encapsulate what you want out of a veteran A-lister than George Clooney. Not only is he an accomplished actor with an Academy Award on his mantle, he’s a highly regarded writer and director, with an Oscar for producing under his belt as well. He’s a jack of all trades, and with a new star vehicle out on Friday in Money Monster (which I actually see tomorrow), I thought it was high time to go over his best performances to date. There’s no shortage of quality on Clooney’s permanent record, so finding his top works so far won’t be hard, on top of being a pleasure. He’s had a great career that’s only about at the midway point, so there’s not only tons to look at, but plenty more to come as well!

Below you will find a list of what Clooney has done so far that I consider to be his top tier of work. Without overtly spoiling things, the ten spots will include all of his Oscar nominated performances, as well as the one that actually won him an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Also included are performances within a few of the films he wrote/directed as well. Without question, Clooney is talented in multiple realms, so it wasn’t easy to figure out which movies go in which slots here. I even had to include an honorable mention category as well as a bonus list, which you’ll see momentarily. It’s a tribute to the man’s body of work so far that there’s so much to choose from, without even factoring in Money Monster, which seems very promising…

Here now are what I find to be Clooney’s ten best performances so far:

10. Syriana
9. Out of Sight
8. Michael Clayton
7. The American
6. Solaris
5. Three Kings
4. The Descendants
3. Good Night, and Good Luck
2. The Ides of March
1. Up in the Air

Honorable Mention – Burn After Reading, Gravity, The Men Who Stare at Goats, The Monuments Men, Ocean’s Eleven, and The Perfect Storm

Special Citation – Fantastic Mr. Fox (voice acting)

George Clooney in Ides of March 600x300
Basically, Clooney has been consistently impressing for some time now, and there’s lots more to look forward to. I really hope that he chooses keep up the pace of directing every few years while taking interesting acting jobs in between. Clearly, I find Up in the Air to be his crowning achievement so far, but I also think that The Ides of March is easily his most underrated performance yet. In a slightly different world, he wins Best Supporting Actor (and obviously gets nominated in the process as well) for that role. Regardless, he’s going to be in Oscar’s eye for years to come, I have no doubt about that.

As a bonus now, here’s my ranking of his directorial outings to date:

1. Good Night, and Good Luck
2. The Ides of March
3. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
4. The Monuments Men
5. Leatherheads

Essentially, Clooney is one of the industry’s biggest stars, but uses his celebrity for more than just fame and fortune. He’s active in politics, not silent about helping save the world, and also just makes fantastic choices with his cinematic projects. More often than not, having Clooney sign on to a project is a clear indication of high quality. I’ll report in on Money Monster in a few days, but I doubt it’ll suddenly be a change in his talents. The Academy may not come calling this year, but he’s a favorite son and will be nominated again before too long. You can take that to the bank…

Be sure to stay tuned for my take on Clooney’s most recent work in Money Monster later on this week!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He contributes to several other film-related websites and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

Follow us

Breaking Hollywood News   


Comments are closed.