Like most of the talented artists who have become quintessential movie stars, Tom Cruise he doesn’t always get a chance to show that he can really act.

There is often too much Tom Cruise on screen for people to notice actor Tom Cruise, especially when he lets his sometimes incomprehensible personal life take center stage.

Putting together a list of the essences of such a prolific and popular actor is walking a tightrope, proving very difficult to discriminate between the stellar appearances of the franchises that he produces to please the crowd and the performances of real substance that credit him as an explorer of his acting limits.

Now that Tom Cruise is filming his new movie in Birmingham, we are going to point out 10 of his best performances in our opinion and that you should see to get an idea of ​​his abilities before judging him. Here we go:

Risky Business (1983)

The early ’80s were awash with teen sex comedies, most of which have justifiably faded from memory. Then this Risky Business (risky business), which not only outperformed the rest, but also left an indelible mark on pop culture history.

It wasn’t Tom Cruise’s first movie, but it might as well have been: The moment he slipped into the living room in an Oxford shirt and his skin-tight boxer shorts, he went from handsome boy to wildly popular household name. And the film holds up remarkably well more than three decades later, largely because Cruise turns Joel Goodsen into a real person instead of a cardboard cutout. And he did it when he was very young.

Rain Man (1989)

Cruise’s first multidimensional role was arguably that of Charlie Babbitt, the young business star who is burdened with a wise, autistic older brother he didn’t know he had. Dustin Hoffman’s Oscar as Raymond is the centerpiece of the film, and rightly so. But Cruise’s Charlie could easily be a one-dimensional jerk…and he isn’t thanks to the actor.

Cruise not only manages to put flesh and truth to his character but also endures the interpretive (and sometimes histrionic) gale of a Hoffman in full capacity and maturity. Others could have continued to do Top Gun and Cocktailprior to this film, but Cruise demonstrated with Rain Man that he wasn’t in the movies to be an ephemeral fashion actor.

Born on the Fourth of July (1989)

And Rain Man gave us the first full dramatic performance of Cruise, the Vietnamese epic of Oliver Stone unexpectedly placed the actor on a new level. Cruise, the star, literally disappears into the role of Ron Kovica passionate patriot whose experiences in the war transformed him into one of the leading voices of protest of the time, as never before.

Partly because it doesn’t rely as much on intense combat scenes, born on the fourth of july it’s a more mature Stone film, and Cruise bears the responsibility of conveying the undercurrent of lost innocence for an entire generation. The film is often hard to watch (as any quality movie should be), but Cruise gives audiences a pivot, a human reference for handling the ugly truth of life as a disabled veteran, in a role that earned him his first nomination. to the Oscar.

A Few Good Men (1992)

The drama of the military court of Rob Reiner draws on everything that makes Tom Cruise Tom Cruise: the affable, boy-next-door charm and the acting chops to take on none other than Jack Nicholson.

Daniel coffee is Cruise’s character, a goofy fledgling lawyer who suddenly gets a chance to make himself known in a big way. But, in some concomitance with the actor’s artistic career, he is a canny player who knows when to turn on the charisma and when to turn up the dramatic heat.

Interview with the Vampire (1994)

For Cruise, the role of the vampire Lestat in the first big screen adaptation of the gothic story of Anne Rice it was a big gamble. After all, this is the actor who turned down the lead role in Edward Scissorhands after tough talks with the director Tim Burton about what the character could do to his image. The next four years seemingly gave Cruise enough self-confidence to tackle Lestat’s lace-and-makeup persona (and her wig-style wig). Veronica Lake).

However, if the look bordered on the over the top, Cruise’s performance definitely did not. He played the bloodsucking manipulator as a coiled spring, squeezing a rat’s blood into a glass of wine and leaping from quiet malevolence to smoldering fury in mere undead heartbeats.

Jerry Maguire (1996)

For all his stardom, Cruise had rarely played a fully romantic lead until his friend and accomplice’s dream came along. Cameron Crowe. Jerry Maguirea chick flick angled on financial and sports ambitions to appeal to male audiences, was a crowd-pleaser and allowed Cruise to show off his softer side.

Whether jumping up and down on the iconic phone call “show me the pasta”hugging Renee Zellweger or playing an endless game of “Did you know?” With his precocious son, Cruise once again embodies with precision and quality a polyhedral character for which he received his second Oscar nomination.

Magnolia (1999)

The continuation that Paul Thomas Anderson rolled from his porn industry epic Boogie Nights it was even more ambitious: cutting across multiple stories and featuring a dozen disparate characters. Cruise, again, manages to stand out and make us forget everything we knew about him.

With a striking hairstyle and an intimidating strut, your speaker and motivator Frank TJ Mackey dominates the screen. The film then pulls the emotional rug out from under us by revealing Mackey’s true character, a complete 180-degree turn from the misogynistic beast we’ve seen, and Cruise doesn’t mess up, pun intended. If the movie didn’t have a scene with frogs literally raining from the sky, Cruise’s performance would be the most amazing thing. As it stands, it is the highlight of his filmography as an actor.

Collateral (2004)

We’ve never really seen Tom Cruise play a villain before this hit man from Michael manunless one counts Lestat. And like all of Cruise’s best performances, his sinister Vincent it is a study in contrasts.

Attracts the taxi driver played by Jamie Foxx like a snake in one breath, and then delivers an unexpected blow of wicked aggression in the next. And in the end, she manages to make us care a little about him, such a dubious character. You can not ask for more.

Tropic Thunder (2008)

When the initial shock of the bold interpretation of Robert Downey, Jr. as a white actor so methodical that he permanently wears blackface to land a part in a Vietnam War drama, of Tropic Thunder we have left Les Grossman.

Unrecognizable (and uncredited) in a fat suit and a striking bald head, Cruise’s performance as the foul-mouthed producer is so startlingly extreme and possesses such impeccable comedic sensibilities that we wonder why he hasn’t let loose like this sooner… and we still wish he would do it again.

Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol (2011)

The actor himself rappels down the glass side of the world’s tallest building. No CGI. No stunt double. That says everything about how Cruise as a star (and, significantly, co-producer) continues to bring this franchise to life.

And while he’ll likely continue to find new ways to engage audiences with each installment, he made a statement with this one. Even clinging to the outside of a plane in Mission: Impossible – secret nation looks easy compared to this one.

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