Ryan Gosling is a Hollywood icon. He has classic charm, unique eccentricity, and acting versatility that rivals Brad Pitt and Jake Gyllenhaal. Comparisons have been made to Robert Redford and Paul Newman too.
Gosling was in “The Mickey Mouse Club” and “Young Hercules” before his break-out role in “The Notebook,” which propelled him into stardom. His good looks are unforgettable, but he is unafraid to embrace his quirks onscreen or off-screen.
Film journalist Hubert Cohen suggested Ryan Gosling may be the ‘final movie star,’ referencing an unconventional blend of charisma with relatability – making audiences love watching this actor on screens big & small alike!
Let’s explore some of the best movies starring Ryan Gosling. From action films like “Blade Runner 2049” to emotional dramas such as “Crazy, Stupid, Love,” we will delve deeper into how much impact could one iconic presence bring onto the silver screen.
We look forward to his upcoming roles in “Barbie” and the “Ocean 11” prequels. So join us on a journey through Ryan Gosling‘s career, and discover why the actor has become one of Hollywood’s most celebrated film stars.
10 Highest-Rated Ryan Gosling Movies, According to IMDb
- Blue Valentine (2010) – 7.3
- The Place Beyond the Pines (2012) – 7.3
- The Nice Guys (2016) – 7.3
- Crazy, Stupid, Love. (2011) – 7.4
- Remember the Titans (2000) – 7.8
- The Big Short (2015) – 7.8
- The Notebook (2004) – 7.8
- Drive (2011) – 7.8
- Blade Runner 2049 (2017) – 8
- La La Land (2016) – 8
10 ‘Blue Valentine’ (2010)
Ryan Gosling mesmerizes in his “Blue Valentine” performance. The movie explores love from its most joyous heights to the depths of sorrow. His portrayal as Dean—a high school drop-out turned loving husband and father—shows an immense range with echoes of Marlon Brando‘s performances.
A particularly captivating moment is when he serenades Cindy (played by Michelle Williams) on a ukulele. Still, this blissful scene also hints at their future demise: substance abuse and jealousy will soon take over both characters’ lives.
Gosling succeeds in making Dean lovable yet profoundly flawed – a mirror reflection that not only pain can be expressed through carelessness or malice at times too.
The critical acclaim proved it was time for Ryan Gosling‘s transition from charming playboy roles into more complex ones – something “Blue Valentine” definitely showcased well.
Truly one of Hollywood’s best actors today, he flawlessly transitions between moments of euphoria to distress throughout the film with shocking accuracy while giving us insight into relationships that are born easily and then fade quickly due to neglect or lack of understanding.
9 ‘The Place Beyond the Pines’ (2012)
Ryan Gosling delivers an extraordinary performance in “The Place Beyond the Pines.” He teams up with director Derek Cianfrance of “Blue Valentine” fame. They explore a powerful generational story with themes like economic inequality and father’s sins.
Gosling plays Luke Glanton, a stunt biker who turns to bank robbing out of desperation. Despite his tattooed face and bleached hair giving off criminal vibes, viewers feel empathy for him thanks to Gosling’s soft eyes that hint at his inner troubles rather than malice or evil intent. The film is similar to “Drive,” but this one is more subdued and character-driven than action-packed.
Bradley Cooper also stars as an ambitious cop desperately trying to bring down Glanton by any means necessary. However, Gosling’s multi-layered portrayal stays on your mind throughout the rest of the movie. His ability to subvert audience prejudice helps make “The Place Beyond the Pines” another unforgettable entry into his portfolio.
8 ‘The Nice Guys’ (2016)
Ryan Gosling takes on a distinctive role in “The Nice Guys,” showcasing his comedic ingenuity and excellent timing. He plays detective Holland March, searching for clues throughout seedy Los Angeles of the 1970s. With an array of printed shirts and a quirky mustache, he provides comic relief alongside Russell Crowe‘s partner-in-crime-solving antics.
Gosling portrays Holland as uncool but charming – a far cry from his typical roles – demonstrating versatility with physical comedy that often involves much shrieking to react fearfully towards threats encountered during investigations. Nevertheless, it all works out eventually. His performance proves that Gosling can pull off lighthearted entertainment like heavier material, cementing himself further into Hollywood history as an impressive chameleon actor.
7 ‘Crazy, Stupid, Love.’ (2011)
Ryan Gosling stars in the romantic comedy “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” He plays Jacob Palmer – a smarmy playboy with irresistible charm. This film, directed by Glenn Ficarra and John Requa, offers an entertaining masterclass into love and heartbreak.
Gosling is impeccably dressed as he takes on mentorship for Steve Carell‘s character Cal Weaver – who knows nothing about modern dating. But when Gosling meets Hannah (Emma Stone), his world turns upside down; even the ultimate player doesn’t know how to be human or vulnerable.
In one scene, she slams him, saying, “photoshopped” after seeing his chiseled body up close. His relationship with Emma Stone is touching, which led them both onto future projects like “Gangster Squad” & “La La Land” together, resulting in Oscar wins.
This performance displays Ryan’s talent superbly, where traditional Hollywood meets modern-day romance perfectly, showing that there’s more than just surface-level appeal, of course, needed nowadays for long-term success.
6 ‘Remember the Titans’ (2000)
Ryan Gosling‘s early performance in “Remember the Titans” as Alan Bosley is memorable. He plays a high school football player during the integration of schools in 1970s America (northern Virginia specifically). Boaz Yakin directs this powerful tale about racial unity that resonates with white American audiences more so than other films on racism, such as “Do The Right Thing” or “Malcolm X.”
Besides offering an introduction to Ryan Gosling’s talent and charisma, his role offers much-needed accessibility for viewers unfamiliar with exploring deep-seated issues like racism through film – something which sets it apart from its contemporaries. It also serves to introduce people to him rather than being focused solely on showcasing his acting prowess.
So although he does not play a primary part in the plot structure itself, “Remember the Titans” remains an essential entry when looking at Ryan Gosling‘s career trajectory due to its cultural significance both then and now.
5 ‘The Big Short’ (2015)
Ryan Gosling portrays a suave Deutsche Bank executive in Adam McKay‘s adaptation of the 2008 financial crisis, “The Big Short.” His character Jared Vennett is an unassuming insider, and he uses metaphors to illustrate what’s at stake. “What’s that smell? I smell money,” says Vennett amidst all the chaos.
Gosling plays one part in this star-studded ensemble piece; however, his performance adds depth as he explains complex economic models with charm and confidence. This statement also reflects when he interprets their fragile circumstances using Jenga tower pieces metaphorically– symbolizing potential disaster looming near if not taken care of correctly soon enough by those responsible for it.
McKay successfully delivers an ambitious film about exposing wrongful actions behind the 2007 housing market collapse – making complicated matters accessible to general viewers without losing its cutting-edge quality. As movies go, “The Big Short” stands out thanks largely due to Ryan Gosling‘s portrayal here, which proves versatile with him playing a different role than usual from dramas like “The Notebook” or “La La Land,” but no less impactful.
4 ‘The Notebook’ (2004)
Ryan Gosling transformed into a Hollywood heartthrob overnight with his performance in “The Notebook.” He and Rachel McAdams created palpable chemistry. Their rain–drenched kiss scene is iconic.
But more than just charm makes the movie special: Noah‘s actions are portrayed as sincere, thanks to Gosling‘s talent for imbuing characters with kindness.
His portrayal of earnest passion and uncompromising love has made this film an all–time classic. His Southern accent might hint at Canadian roots, but this role will always be a defining moment in his career.
3 ‘Drive’ (2011)
Ryan Gosling portrays the enigmatic “Driver,” an introvert with a dark side, in Nicolas Winding Refn‘s crime drama, “Drive.” His brooding performance brings to life this juxtaposition of beauty and horror. The violence serves as more than mere shock value; it highlights the danger and consequences of embracing such a lifestyle.
Gosling excels at conveying emotion through his body language and expression – saying just as much without words as many do with them. He captures both tough guy kitsch yet genuine soulfulness, making for a memorable character etched into modern cinema history alongside its famous scorpion jacket look worn by Driver himself.
The film explores blurred lines between beauty and gore, demonstrating how they can feed off of each other to create a fascinatingly alien allure. Refn pays homage to the crime classics such as “Thief,” “Point Blank,” and “The Driver” in his creation that pulsates with tension and intensity made more powerful by Gosling’s understated yet captivating performance.
2 ‘Blade Runner 2049’ (2017)
Ryan Gosling‘s performance as K, the replicant blade runner in “Blade Runner 2049”, is a masterclass in restrained emotion. His nuanced portrayal of humanity and robotics inhabiting one being allows audiences to relate to this alien world.
Gosling conveys a wealth of feelings through his soft stoicism – from nostalgic familiarity when exploring Los Angeles, San Diego, and Las Vegas; to longing for companionship with Joi (Ana de Armas). Its powerful yet understated delivery enables him to reject traditional celebrity hybridization and embody an artwork-like character as no other actor could.
The film explores identity, memory, and what being human truly means. This thought-provoking sequel expands on Ridley Scott’s original sci-fi masterpiece by delving deeper into its themes while offering captivatingly complex characters thanks to Ryan Gosling‘s excellent acting, which drives home “blade runners” exploration around these metaphysical musings.
1 ‘La La Land’ (2016)
Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone are an electric duo in Damien Chazelle‘s “La La Land.” It tells the story of two dreamers, Sebastian and Mia, navigating their budding romance amidst personal ambitions.
Gosling brings to life a charming character devoted to his dreams and aware of his accompanying sacrifices. His authenticity is evident through self-taught piano performances that add soul to the movie-musical experience.
There lies a controversial narrative around cultural appropriation with Sebastian’s white savior complex—something which Ryan plays delicately. The chemistry between Gosling and Stone illuminates star power rarely seen on 21st-century cinema screens.
It was initially declared Best Picture at Academy Awards until it got retracted due to a mixup. Nonetheless, “La La Land” remains commendable for enjoying new ideas while cementing itself as part of Gosling’s illustrious filmography, once again proving why he is one of the most esteemed actors today.
10 Best Ryan Gosling Movies, According to Rotten Tomatoes
- Drive (2011) – 93%
- La La Land (2016) – 91%
- The Nice Guys (2016)- 91%
- Half Nelson (2006) – 91%
- The Big Short (2015) – 89%
- Blade Runner 2049 (2017) – 88%
- First Man (2018) – 87%
- Blue Valentine (2010) – 86%
- The Ides of March (2011) – 83%
- The Believer (2001) – 83%