Gary Oldman is a British actor who made his debut in 1982 as an actor. He has since then had a fantastic career in acting as a versatile as well as an intense actor. His expertise in a variety of roles has gained him honorable accolades and numerous awards.
His films have gained recognition worldwide, making him one of the highest-grossing actors for the longest time. His versatility in acting had surprised even the long-term fans of the actor, some of them even claiming they could not have recognized him in certain movies if it was not for the credits!
Gary gave up his aspirations to have a career in music so he could work in the field of acting. Truly, that was the best decision he could have made, for he has given us some fine and applauded work since he came to the cinema.
Oldman has indubitably worked diligently since his early days to make a name for himself in the film industry. During his time in the industry itself, Gary has not just shown expertise but also has given us a number of unforgettable characters that will stay with us for times to come.
In true appreciation of his successful acting career, here are 49 Best Gary Oldman Movies to Watch. They vary in genres, just like the actor’s range; all being thoroughly enjoyable.
1. Remembrance (1982)
This list begins with the first film that Gary Oldman starred in. Remembrance from 1982 is the rarely viewed film in which Gary Oldman debuted his film career, beginning a great legacy.
He plays the role of Daniel, an alcoholic sailor who is stumbling in the rain while looking for someplace to drink. He eventually finds a nightclub where he strikes up an unpleasant conversation, upsetting the bouncer there as a result. The bouncer then beats him up into a coma.
The remaining film shows a host of characters who is sailing from Plymouth, some of them even trying to know more about Daniel’s past. The film also acts as an early appearance opportunity for British actors like Timothy Spall (from Harry Potter), Lisa Maxwell (from The Bill), and John Altman (from EastEnders). The plot is sometimes hazy, with the purpose remaining unclear, but the movie is still captivating in its manner.
2. Mank (2020)
Gary Oldman has earned a total of three Oscar Nominations so far; Mank got him his third Oscar nomination to date (surely, he deserves several more of them). He plays the screenwriter Herman J. “Mank” Mankiewicz during his time when he developed the screenplay for “Citizen Kane.”
All this was done when he was recovering from a broken leg injury that was a result of a car wreck. There is just something wonderful about Oldman playing the role of a famous man, and he always is able to do it brilliantly.
Mank takes you back into the glory days of Hollywood and the politics that went behind the workings of the studios of those times. The movie walks you through the life of a man who was adamant about leaving behind a legacy while also battling his inner demons and alcohol addiction.
3. Sid and Nancy (1986)
The movie that catapulted Gary Oldman into further fame was “Sid and Nancy,” which came out in 1986. The movie is a biopic chronicling the tragic relationship between Sex Pistols Bassist Sid Vicious (Gary Oldman) and his girlfriend Nancy Spungen (Chloe Webb). Gary showed great commitment to the character by losing a lot of weight so he could play the emaciated Sid.
The story shows the mysterious death of Nancy Spungen upon stabbing and Sid’s subsequent arrest soon after the incident. Their tumultuous relationship revolving around their combative tendencies and drugs came to an end due to these incidents. While Oldman himself does not believe he did a great job in the movie, several critics state otherwise. His film career only flourished after this movie.
4. Basquiat (1996)
Basquiat is a biographical film based on the Brooklyn painter Jean Michel Basquiat (Jeffery Wright). The plot chronicles his time when he struggled as an artist who spent his former days in a cardboard box to when he eventually gained fame.
In the process, he also grows closer to the legendary artist Andy Warhol (David Bowie), the art dealer Bruno Bischofberger (Dennis Hopper), and the painter Albert Milo (Gary Oldman).
Gary Oldman, as Albert, acts as a fictional stand-in for the director of the movie, Julian Schnabel, who also was a painter. The film thus metaphorically approaches Schnabel’s character as well. The casting, of course, including Gary Oldman, does a wonderful job at bringing the famous painter to life on the big screen. The artistic approach to the adaptation of a real person used in the movie makes it a worthwhile experience.
5. Leon: The Professional (1994)
Natalie Portman gives her debut performance alongside Gary Oldman in Leon: The Professional in 1994. Portman plays the 12-year-old Mathilda, who gets under the guardianship of Leon (Jean Reno) when she loses her parents in a case of Murder. This was caused by corrupt DEA Agents who were all led by Norman Stansfield (Gary Oldman).
Gary plays a menacing, psychopathic, and maniacal character, getting hunted down by both Leon and Mathilda. The little girl seeks revenge on her family, including her parents and brother, by convincing Leon to teach her his ways. Leon and Mathilda form an unusual alliance to fulfill this purpose.
6. Man Down (2015)
Man Down, which came out in 2015, is about the U.S. Marine Gabriel Drummer (Shia LaBeouf) throughout his career in the military, alongside his childhood friend, Devin Roberts (Jai Courtney), and his counseling sessions with his psychiatrist Captain Peyton (Gary Oldman). The story further follows him into a life in a post-apocalyptic work which may very well not be real.
The movie portrays well the consequences that PTSD has on soldiers after life-altering incidents on the battlefield and in service. There is also the overlying use of sci-fi elements in the film. The entire cast was widely recognized for delivering a good performance. The message of the film is meaningful and worth checking out.
7. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (2011)
It is still an unbelievable fact that Gary Oldman only got his first Oscar nomination (even after several years into giving us unforgettable and brilliant characters) after his acting in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy; it seems strange and unfair, does it not? In this espionage thriller, Gary plays George Smiley, a man who used to be an agent.
He is recruited on duty to flesh out a mole in British Intelligence (The Circus). Oldman delivered great immersion and intricate portrayal of Smiley in this movie, making it a worthwhile watch throughout.
8. The Harry Potter films
We cannot go around talking of the best works by Gary Oldman and not mention him playing Sirius Black in the Harry Potter movie franchise. It is quite a hard job to bring together a cast that can both resemble and do justice to the characters just as they are portrayed in the book. Gary’s coming on board as Sirius Black has been a result of accurate casting.
He has embodied Sirius Black’s character perfectly well. Sirius black is the best friend of Harry’s (Daniel Radcliffe) parents and also is his godfather. He dwindles perfectly between being a good person and a wizard with a dark side to him. No one but Oldman can be imagined as playing Sirius Black.
9. RoboCop (2014)
RoboCop from 2014 is a remake of the 1987 classic of the same name. It follows Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman), a cop from Detroit who is caught in a car bomb that was planted by the same criminal that he was investigating. The pieces of his body are put together into robotic armor under the guidance of the OmniCorp CEO Raymond Sellars (Michael Keaton) by Dr. Denett Norton (Gary Oldman).
After he is given military training by Rick Mattox (Jackie Earle Haley) and with some sneaky drone programming, Alex Murphy is given a new life as a cyborg police officer called RoboCop. While the remake differs from the original in some ways, it still is an entertaining experience. To do a classic remake well is a handful, but RoboCop shows sincere effort and is worth checking out once.
10. Child 44 (2015)
Child 44 follows Leo Demidov (Tom Hardy) in Soviet Russia. He loses the job that required him to arrest dissidents when he refuses to denounce his accused wife (Noomi Rapace). He is soon demoted to work as a policeman under General Mikhail Nesterov (Gary Oldman).
Leo soon comes across a conspiracy revolving around the Murder of several children. He decided to look further into the conspiracy, putting not just himself but also his family and the government in danger.
While the film has been criticized for featuring several Russian characters and not even one played by an actual Russian, it is a good enough work since the cast delivered strong performances. The film is also banned in Russia because it is claimed to distort historical narratives and facts. The film packs intense themes and a good central mystery.
11. Criminal (2016)
The 2016 film Criminal revolves around the death of CIA Agent Bill Pope (Ryan Reynolds) during a mission. His supervisor Quaker Wells (Gary Oldman), then transplants Bill’s memories into the mind of a sociopathic criminal named Jerico Stewart.
Things get out of control when Jerico escapes and tracks Bill’s wife, Jill (Gal Gadot). It is a question of whether Jerico will now do something wrong or if the Pope’s memories will change the course of events through influencing.
The storyline seems quite disengaging at times, yet strong performances by the cast save the movie altogether. However, it did fail at the box office, sadly. It is only a one-time watch, so if not for the plot, watch it only for Gary Oldman.
12. Romeo Is Bleeding (1993)
Gary Oldman plays the role of Jack Grimaldi in the 1993 movie “Romeo is Bleeding,” a corrupt cop that gets the best of both worlds by doing his job and also working for a mob. He soon finds his carefully put-together, extravagant charade coming to an end once he gets assigned to the killing of a person.
This person is the skilled and gorgeous mob assassin named Mona Demarkov (played by Lena Olin). The assassin leads him into a dangerous game of cat and mouse, which further endangers his false life. While the movie has not earned a lot of applause or praise, Gary himself has gained a lot of recognition for the character he has played.
13. The Space Between Us (2017)
The Space Between Us is a much-talked-about movie from 2017. It is about Nathaniel Shepard (Gary Oldman), who funds the first-ever voyage of humans to Mars. When they land, one of the astronauts, Sarah Elliot (Janet Montgomery), who had been pregnant, passes away while giving birth to her child. Gardner Elliot (Asa Butterfield), the child, is forced to live on mars since the gravity on Earth can negatively affect his medical health.
Fortunately, with the help of his new friend, Tulsa (Britt Robertson), he can explore the Earth and can now even find out who his father is. The Space Between Us is a good enough sci-fi and romantic movie that you can check out once.
14. Dawn of the Planet of Apes (2014)
Dawn of the Planet of Apes showcases a world ten years later after the human population has nearly been wiped out due to the global pandemic Simian Flu. In this era, genetically enhanced chimpanzees have taken control and have a thriving colonies of their own. These chimpanzees are led by Caesar (Andy Serkis). The humans who have survived are struggling to fit into this new world.
In such a case, Caesar and the leader of humans, Malcolm (Jason Clarke), form an alliance that can potentially lead to an establishment of peace between the two species. Unfortunately, Caesar’s lieutenant Koba (Tony Kebbell) and Malcolm’s leader Dreyfus (Gary Oldman) are skeptical of each other, which puts the potent establishment as well as the future of the two species in danger. The film served as a successful sequel to the franchise.
15. The Backwoods (2006)
The Backwoods follows Norman (Paddy Considine) and Lucy (Virginie Ledoyen), who set out into the backwoods of Northern Spain in an attempt to fix their marriage. They go to spend time with Norman’s boss Paul (Gary Oldman), and his wife, Isabel (Aitana Sanchez-Gijon). One day when Norman and Paul are out hunting, they come across a young girl (Yaiza Esteve) who is chained up in a cabin.
They decide to free her and take her back to Paul’s home. Soon enough, it is realized that the girl’s family is not far behind. The film is the product of solid direction and strong performances by the actors. It is also a good throwback to the 70s.
16. Murder in the First (1995)
Another movie based on real-life events is Murder in the First, which came out in 1995. Henri Young (Kevin Bacon) gets imprisoned in Alcatraz for stealing $5. In custody, the jail warden Milton Glenn (Gary Oldman) abuses him regularly. He tries to escape, but he fails and spends the next three years in solitary after someone rats him out.
Upon his release, he kills the person that ratted him out. This puts him under a trial for first-degree trial. The public defender James Stamphill (Christian Slater) gets assigned to his case and tries to prove that maltreatment within custody had driven Henri into committing these acts.
The film is a raw take on the harsh reality and circumstances within prison confinement. It also puzzles the viewer with its takes on morality.
17. The Contender (2000)
Upon the death of his Vice President, Democratic President Jackson Evans (Jeff Bridges) wishes to nominate Senator Liane Hanson (Joan Allen) to fill the position. To do so, he seeks the approval of Congress.
A Republican Congressman Sheldon Runyon (Gary Oldman), tries to find dirt on the selected nominee and digs up her past to spread rumors that she refuses to address. “The Contender” is a powerful political drama with even more powerful performances. It has also earned the actors several nominations.
18. We Think the World of You (1988)
We think the world of you, which came out in 1988, is about a recently imprisoned man called Johnny (Gary Oldman). While in custody, he put his dog Evie under the care of his parents and former lover Frank (Alan Bates).
As Alan grows more fond of the dog, he wishes to take full custody of the dog so he can take it away from Johnny’s abusive household. But when Johnny gets out of prison, it becomes even more difficult for Frank to do so.
Unlike the perception of it that is put forward by its overly comedic trailer, We Think the World of you is a slow-paced film that captures the suppression of sexuality and the essence of human nature. The film is underrated but definitely a work that will reward your attention. We also see an adorable dog throughout the movie!
19. Darkest Hour (2017)
What actually earned Gary Oldman his second Academy Award nomination and also his first win in the Best Actor category was his role as Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour in 2017. The movie shows the early days of Churchill’s tenure as the Prime Minister of Britain.
The statesman has several hard decisions to make while the Allies fight a losing war. Oldman again looks unrecognizable under the heavy get-up he had to spend hours to get into. This added to the reasons for his getting an Oscar, in addition to his magnificent acting.
It goes without saying that Gary Oldman is the only imaginable person who could have brought Churchill to life like this. He won not just the Oscar but also the Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Screen Actors Guild Awards for his work in the film.
21. State of Grace (1990)
State of Grace is about undercover cop Terry Noonan (Sean Penn), who returns to New York so he can infiltrate the Irish mob under his childhood friend Jackie’s (Gary Oldman) older brother Frankie Flannery (Ed Harris).
As Terry delves deeper into a life with his old friends, he happens to rekindle the relationship he had with their sister Kathleen (played by Robin Wright). He then finds himself stuck in a dilemma on whether to stick to loyalties from his childhood or commit to the mission that he has been assigned.
Gary displays excellently his ability to breathe life into every character that he plays and his expertise in mastering any accent that comes with it. The movie is not a box office blockbuster, yet Oldman’s portrayal of Jackie makes it worth a watch.
21. The Hitman’s Bodyguard (2017)
The life of the hitman Darius Kincaid (Samuel L. Jackson) is put in danger when he agrees to testify against the dictator Vladislav Dukhovich (Gary Oldman). Michael Bryce (Ryan Reynolds) is a bodyguard who is hired to protect Darius.
However, Darius and Michael have had a rough past and must now learn to work through their differences so they can bring down Dukhovich together. This action comedy did great at the box despite the criticism about its movie tropes. The film also has a sequel under the name “The Hitman’s Bodyguard’s Wife,” which came out in 2021. Salma Hayek, Samuel L. Jackson, and Ryan Reynolds reprise their roles well.
22. True Romance (1993)
When call girl Alabama (Patricia Arquette) happens to fall in love with Clarence (Christian Slater), they quickly get married. Clarence soon has a “vision of Elvis” that tells him to kill Alabama’s pimp Drexl (Gary Oldman). Once he shoots Drexl, he also mistakenly takes with himself a suitcase filled with cocaine. The couple soon finds themselves under the radar of the mob that is looking for drugs.
Oldman’s portrayal of Drexl has been one of the best ones of a villain in the cinema, even when it was for a relatively shorter time. The film is a work by Quentin Tarantino and also brings together famous names such as Brad Pitt, Christopher Walken, and Samuel L. Jackson, making this movie quite fun to watch.
23. Nobody’s Baby (2001)
Nobody’s Baby is about an escaped convict Billy Raedeen (Skeet Ulrich), who comes across a car wreck with a baby inside. He then decides to raise the child by himself. He is further helped in doing so by the waitress Shauna Louise (Radha Mitchell) and her trailer park neighbor Estelle (Mary Steenburgen). When Billy is reunited with an old partner in crime, Buford Bill (Gary Oldman), he has more financial motive-driven ideas regarding the kid.
The movie has comedic themes, and Oldman is seen as the cowboy hat-wearer doofus. The silliness and the goofiness all make for a light-hearted watch. Gary Oldman has also produced this movie.
24. Hunter Killer (2018)
Hunter Killer shows the involvement of the US when Russian President Nikolai Zakarin (Alexnder Dyachenko) gets kidnapped by his own defense minister Dmitriy Durov (Mikhail Gorevoy).
Admiral Charles Donnegan (Gary Oldman) and US Navy Rear Admiral John Fisk (Common) send out a submarine named “Arkansas” that is being led by Commander Joe Glass (Gerard Butler). This is done to retrieve the imprisoned Russian President so the latest threat of war can be prevented.
The film is termed clichéd in nature but still managed to deliver some edge-of-your-seat action sequences and maintain a blockbuster appeal. The audience score on Rotten Tomatoes went up as high as 70%. Hunter Killer stands in for at least a one-time watch due to good casting and a good enough plotline that is put forward.
25. The Book of Eli (2010)
The Book of Eli follows a post-apocalyptic America. Eli (played by Denzel Washington) is a survivor who is traveling across the country, holding a valuable book with himself. On his travels, he meets with the warlord Carnegie (Gary Oldman).
The warlord is in search of the book, for he realizes the power it holds. When Eli refuses to hand over the book to him, what unfolds is a battle of good versus evil. The film maintains proper suspense till the end. The movie has earned wide recognition as well.
26. Tau (2018)
Tau is a sci-fi thriller from 2018 that follows Julia (Maika Monroe), who is captured by a scientist called Alex (Ed Skrein). He locks her up in his house and experiments on her. The only way Julia can escape the house is by forming a friendship with Tau (voiced by Gary Oldman), which is the artificial intelligence program that guards the house.
The movie is a tale of a brave woman trying to break free from the chains put on her by a sadistic scientist. Gary’s performance as Tau is not widely applauded, but not abhorred either. The AI goes through powerful evolution throughout the film, which is interesting to see.
27. Crisis (2021)
Crisis juggles several storylines at once, all of them being concerned with the opioid epidemic. We see Dr. Tyrone Bower (Gary Oldman), who is working on creating a non-addictive painkiller. The pharmaceutical company that he works for suddenly decides to release this medicine when it is not even effective yet.
Bower now needs to find a way to stop them. On the other hand, we see DEA Agent Jake Kelly (Armie Hammer) trying to bring down drug cartels. Lastly, there is the recovering addict Claire Reimann (Evangeline Lilly) investigating the death of her son.
The crisis is an impressive crime thriller that is worth it. Gary Oldman delivers yet another outstanding performance in playing a man whose creation holds high stakes.
28. Bram Stroker’s Dracula (1992)
This Horror classic has not met with ample appreciation, but it surely is a film to watch if you are fond of Gary Oldman solely. Even when audiences have been critical of the casting of Keanu Reeves due to him not fitting into the gothic theme, it is widely known that Gary Oldman’s acting in the movie makes it a spot-on work.
Oldman delivers a sensual and intriguing performance, making his character the best Dracula to ever be captured on the screen. The film also garnered Oscars for Best Costume, Best Makeup, and Best Sound Effects Editing.
29. Track 29 (1988)
Track 29 was originally a television play, “Shmoedipus,” in 1974, but later a movie in 1988. It is about Linda Henry (Theresa Russell), a woman getting ignored by her husband, Henry (Christopher Lloyd). Henry is a surgeon and a model train enthusiast. He is cheating on Linda with his Nurse, Ms. Stein (Sandra Bernhard).
Linda’s life changes when a reminiscent of her past resurfaces to haunt her. A strange British person called Martin (Oldman) suddenly shows up in the town. He claims that Linda is his mother, making him the son that she gave up for adoption in her teenage years.
What is unknown is whether he is her son or not or if he is a real person. Track 29 is a psychologically stimulating film comprising several chaotic and surreal elements within it. While critics call it a film far too extreme, it is still a film that is unique in its own right.
Most do not like the movie, and that still does not make it a bad film, let alone an unworthy one. The film goes to bizarre lengths, and Oldman just fits right into the plot.
30. Rain Fall (2009)
Rain Fall follows John Rain (Kippei Shina), an assassin with the expertise to make his victims’ deaths look like accidents. He is now looking to assassinate the Public Works Minister, who leaves behind great incriminating evidence in the form of a flash drive.
Everyone, including the CIA headed by William Holtzer (Gary Oldman), is out to get their hands on it. The minister also has left behind a daughter (Kyoko Hasegawa), who is a jazz pianist. Rain now feels he must protect her.
Rain Fall dons a half-American and half-Japanese production unit. This is not a high-rated or high-grossing movie. It is still, however, a one-time watch that Gary Oldman makes worthwhile. He is termed to be “overacting” in the movie, which is nothing but him in his natural aspects.
31. The Dark Knight Trilogy (2005-2012)
Gary Oldman has impressed me with his versatility in going from playing villainous characters to playing morally-centered characters. He plays the role of Commissioner Jim Gordon in this popular trilogy.
Gordon forms an uneasy alliance with Caped Crusader (Christian Bale) while trying to maintain law and order in Gotham City. The trilogy dons several flashy characters like Batman, the Joker (Heath Ledger), and Cat Woman (Anne Hathaway). But even so, Gary Oldman proves he can still stand out with such characters around.
32. The Scarlet Letter (1995)
The Scarlet Letter from 1995 is called a loosely based adaptation of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel by the same name. It is about Hester Prynne (Demi Moore), who moves from England to Massachusetts to join a colony of Puritans. Upon the news that her husband has been killed before he could ever join her there, she begins a passionate love affair with the local minister Arthur Dimmesdale (Gary Oldman).
It is soon revealed that her husband is not dead after all, and the accusations of adultery in her name threaten the bond of the new couple. Critics do not like how the movie became something entirely different from the book, but Gary Oldman personally appreciates his work in the movie and terms it one of his favorites.
33. Criminal Law (1989)
Defense Attorney Ben Chase (Gary Oldman) has had a reputation for getting his clients acquitted. He begins to question his life and career when he helps Martin Thiel (Kevin Bacon) get cleared of a murder charge; martin eventually kills again, putting Ben’s thoughts in jeopardy.
Thiel comes to Ben again, but he finds it harder this time to get him cleared of his charges. Oldman delivers a wonderful performance beside Bacon in this crime thriller. It is worth watching because of the entertainment it provides.
34. Hannibal (2001)
Hannibal shows Mason Verger (Gary Oldman), who is the only survivor of a horrific cannibalistic attack by Dr. Hannibal Lecter (Anthony Hopkins). He had been disfigured and paralyzed in terrifying ways as a result of that. He now means to seek revenge for himself. He uses the FBI Special Agent Clarice Starling (Julianne Moore) as bait for this purpose.
What makes the plot thrilling is the twisted nature of Mason as a victim himself. He has also committed several despicable acts that make him quite the equivalent of his abuser. Gray Oldman had insisted not to be credited upon the original release of the film. Interestingly, he looks unrecognizable under his get-up as Verger.
35. Dead Fish (2008)
Dead Fish shows the ordinary locksmith Abe Klein (Andrew Lee Potts) accidentally getting his cell phone exchanged with that of a professional hitman Lynch (Gary Oldman). Abe soon finds himself running from other hitmen (Billy Zane and Karel Roden) and also a loan shark (Robert Carlyle). During all this, Lynch happens to fall in love with Abe’s girlfriend, Mimi (Elena Anaya). Lynch considers leaving his assassination business to be with her.
Gary does justice to Lynch’s character as the love-struck hitman in this crime-based comedy. This is an interesting journey through and through, with fun performances from the cast.
36. Killers Anonymous (2019)
Gary Oldman shows up as “The Man,” a mysterious figure in 2019’s Killers Anonymous. He puts together a group to provide support to killers that are weighed down by guilt after committing Murder and help them cope with it. This group is called for a special meeting after a senator’s attempted assassination. It is speculated that someone from the group may be responsible for it.
Gary’s character spends almost all of his time staring down into happenings with a pair of binoculars and drinking wine. The movie is quite a trashed one, and the plot is so hazy at some point in time. Honestly, the experience is highly subjective. It may be popularly criticized, but you have to find out for yourself what you actually feel.
37. Prick up Your Ears (1987)
Oldman received his first BAFTA and great critical acclaim for his role as the British playwright Joe Orton in Prick up Your Ears in 1987. The story is that of the tragic Murder of Joe Orton. The writer was known to be sexually promiscuous as well as highly controversial.
He met with Kenneth Halliwell in 1951. The two were collaborators and eventual lovers. With great success, Orton grew even cockier. On the other hand, Halliwell consistently became more depressed. This eventually led him to murder Joe Orton and, in the end, commit suicide himself.
38. The Laundromat (2019)
The Laundromat is yet another film based on true incidents. The Steven Soderbergh direction from 2019 tells the true state of events that unfolded in the Panama Papers Scandal. We see two lawyers, Jurgen Mossack (Gary Oldman) and Ramon Fonseca (Antonio Banderas), recounting stories of some of the people affected by their company, Mossack Fonseca. These people are the widower Ellen Martin (Meryl Streep), a Chinese businesswoman Gu Kailai (Rosalind Chao), and the billionaire’s daughter Simone (Jessica Allain).
The film has even impressive names involved, like David Schwimmer, Robert Patrick, Will Forte, Sharon Stone, Jeffery Wright, Chris Parnell, and James Cromwell. While the narration is comedic, the message about money laundering and tax fraud put forward by the movie is very serious.
39. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead (1990)
The movie revolves around the titular characters Rosencrantz (Gary Oldman) and Guildenstern (Tim Roth). The two dwindle in and out of the William Shakespeare play “Hamlet.” They ponder upon the madness of the Danish Prince Hamlet (Iain Glen).
Simultaneously, they also ponder upon the reality they themselves live in, thinking they are seemingly lacking free will. The two men struggle with destiny, fate, and other things thrown their way while being aided by the leader of a theatrical troupe (Richard Dreyfuss).
The movie is based on a play of the same name while featuring a play within a play. The adaptation is done seamlessly, the transition from theatre to screen being flawless. Oldman and Roth impress thoroughly with their excellent on-screen camaraderie.
40. Air Force One (1997)
Gary Oldman plays a villainous character in the 1997 movie Air Force One. The story unfolds as President James Marshall (Harrison Ford) flies home to the US from Moscow with his wife, daughter, and several advisers.
The Air Force One is soon taken over by Radek Loyalists who infiltrate by disguising themselves as journalists. These loyalists are led by Egor Korshunov (Gary Oldman).
They are demanding the release of their general, recently captured by American Troops. Marshall, however, turns the tables in his favor through mindfulness, all in order to save his family and keep up his promise never to negotiate with terrorists.
This action-based thriller has become underrated over the years but never fails to impress. With Ford playing a quintessential film hero and Oldman being a movie villain, this is not a movie to miss.
41. Chattahoochee (1989)
Chattahoochee shows war veteran Emmett Foley (Gary Oldman) returning home, only to find out that he can find no job to support his wife (Frances McDormand) financially. He starts a scene so he can get shot by the police and so that his wife can get the insurance money.
Sadly for him, he ends up in a mental institution instead. After seeing how horrendously they treat the patients there, Emmett decided to team up with an inmate (Dennis Hopper) to reform the system.
The movie also is based on real-life incidents, giving a raw and intimate outlook into the operations of mental institutions back in the 1950s. Gary’s performance is also likewise appreciated in the film.
42. Interstate 60 (2002)
This road trip comedy follows Neal Oliver (James Marsden), who makes a wish to have an answer for his life on his 22nd birthday. His wish is soon answered as he meets the whimsical and menacing O.W. Grant (Gary Oldman). Neal soon finds himself traveling on Interstate 60, which to his great surprise soon enough, does not even exist.
On his along the path, he meets several strange people who further help him learn more about himself and life as a whole. Interstate 60 is a morally intriguing ride whose fan base has grown in the years subsequent to its release. It is quite underrated but a good watch.
43. JFK (1991)
JFK follows Jim Garrison (Kevin Costner), who is a District Attorney in New Orleans. He tries to investigate the potential conspiracies regarding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963. Gary Oldman plays Lee Harvey Oswald, the man who allegedly assassinated the President.
Gary breathes life into one of the most controversial personalities in American History. The film is also a highly controversial one, delving into the incident that potentially polarised America. It has also achieved praise along with criticism as a compelling drama. It also had eight Oscar nominations in its name. It won awards for its cinematography and editing.
44. The Woman in the Window (2021)
Gary Oldman also shows up in the excellently made suspenseful thriller “The Woman in the Window,” which is adapted from the book of the same name. The story revolves around the agoraphobic Anna Fox (Amy Adams), who witnesses the Murder of her friend and neighbor, Jane Russell (Julianne Moore), from the window across her street. She soon calls up the police and accuses them that it is Jane’s abusive husband, Alistair (Gary Oldman), who killed her.
She is taken aback when Alistair brings forward his alive and well wife “Jane Russell” in front of everyone. But Jane is not the one that Anna knows. This throws Anna down a spiral of her own thoughts. The entire story keeps everyone guessing who the actual killer is or whether Anna is just a hallucinating alcoholic. The movie is definitely worth a watch.
45. Slow Horses (2022)
With his role as George Smiley, Gary displayed excellent camaraderie with morally ambiguous characters. Reprising a role much similar to that, the actor appears as Lamb in Slow Horses. Lamb is a cynical-natured spy who, unlike Smiley, is highly disgraced and has to work with a sidelined spy team in a shabby office called the “Slough House.”
Lamb has several layers to his character, something Gary makes possible. On the outside, Lamb is foul-mouthed, but on the inside, he possesses smartness and is definitely the smartest in the room. Slow Horses is set in a post-Cold War era and is based on a book series about espionage by Mick Herron.
46. Guns, Girls, and Gambling (2012)
Once John Smith (Christian Slater) loses an Elvis impersonator contest at an American Casino, he also loses all of his money playing poker with other people (Gary Oldman, Tony Cox, Chris Kattan, and Anthony Brandon Wong).
A tribal mask gets stolen from the casino owner, and John gets blamed because the thief was identified as an Elvis impersonator. Circumstances spiral out of control as Smith gets hunted down while the mask is being searched for. The film is a one-time, violent crime comedy.
47. The Fifth Element (1997)
The Fifth Element is set in the 23rd century. The plot revolves around Korben Dallas (Bruce Willis), who is a cab driver that has been given the task of saving the world when the mysterious young woman Leeloo (Milla Jovovich) happens to fall into his cab.
Gary Oldman again appears as a villain in this sci-fi movie, playing the famous Jean Baptiste Emanuel Zorg. He has received great recognition for his role in this movie; no one else could have been able to do justice to the character apart from Oldman himself. The element of menace and evilness is best presented by Gary.
48. Mary (2019)
Mary is the name of the sailing boat that Gary Oldman’s character David buys in this movie. He wishes to take his family on an expedition to Bermuda. David is currently struggling to reconcile within the marriage with his wife, Sarah (Emily Mortimer). She had recently cheated on him. Things get out of hand once the coupe discovers that the boat that David bought is haunted by an evil witch with the capability to possess people.
While a generic, clichéd film in its own right, Mary does show Oldman and Mortimer giving good enough performances that are fitting for a horror genre. Anyone who is a fan of conventional horror plots can easily find this movie enjoyable. Gary Oldman, if I am to put it personally, cannot disappoint, given his ability to make even failing movies worth something in the end.
49. Immortal Beloved (1994)
When Ludwig Van Beethoven (Gary Oldman) dies, his secretary Schindler (Jeroen Krabbe) finds several love letters to a woman addressed as Beethoven’s “immortal beloved.” He sets out to find out the identity of this woman. He interviews a number of women who have been a part of Beethoven’s life. The composer’s life is told through the various encounters that these women tell the interviewer.
Gary Oldman perfectly portrays the life of a man who is brilliant in all ways but has been suffering from the loss of his hearing for several years. This has been a critically acclaimed film for all these years.
However, it is quite a shame that Oldman had not been nominated for either an Academy award or an Oscar for this movie. the hints of romance and overlying tragedy were the precious gift of Gary’s expertise and versatility. There is a reason that Immortal Beloved is a movie you will not forget.