Acclaimed actor Russell Crowe, who is currently starring in the Biblical epic film Noah, turns 50 today. In honor of the celebrated performer's impressive career, here are the five highest-rated Russell Crowe films, based on their Rotten Tomatoes score…
Birthday Boy Russell Crowe's 5 Highest Rated Films
#5. Master & Commander: The Far Side Of The World
Russell Crowe stars as Jack Aubrey, a British ship captain during the Napoleonic Wars who pushes his steadfast crew to the limits of their endurance in an effort to find and destroy an enemy ship. The film was celebrated for its well-balanced and directed action, as well as its attention to detail in terms of costuming, set design and general world-building.
#4. 3:10 To Yuma
In this re-make of the classic western of the same name, Russell Crowe plays Ben Wade, an outlaw bank robber who leads a posse of ruthless killers and criminals. Christian Bale plays a lowly, poor farm owner who agrees to escort Ben Wade to prison, and keep his gang from springing him, for a hefty pay day. Ben Foster plays Charlie Prince, Wade's right-hand man. The real magic of the film comes from the dynamic between Crowe and Bale, as well as Crowe and Foster, and the emotional drama of friendship, betrayal and loyalty is what made this a remake that is arguably better than the original.
In this small Australian dramedy, Matrix villain Hugo Weaving plays a young blind photographer named Martin who is distrustful of the world and intensely paranoid. He eventually meets Martin, played by Crowe, who he comes to trust implicitly until Martin reluctantly lies to him, but eventually convinces Martin of the good in the world. It was an early role for Crowe, and again the power of the film comes from the dynamic shared between Crowe and Weaving as they build their friendship.
#2. The Insider
The Insider tells the true story of a whistle blower inside a tobacco company who reveals the truth about all major cigarette manufacturers hiding the true deadly side effects of smoking. Crowe plays the titular insider whose life is put in jeopardy by dangerous and powerful businessmen. The film was the start of the high water mark in Crowe's career, as it landed him his first Oscar nomination, and was the first of three consecutive nominations. (He was nominated the next year for Gladiator, and won, and then nominated again the following year for A Beautiful Mind.)
#1. L.A. Confidential
In this gritty, violent detective story based off the novel by James Elroy, Crowe plays Bud White, a short-tempered cop with a particular hatred towards wife abusers and a willingness to bend the law to arrest or kill a criminal. He is partnered with Guy Pearce's Edmund Exley, an ambitious and by-the-book cop who is looking to make a name for himself. After a violent and confrontational relationship, they begin to trust each other and work towards solving a series of gruesome murders. It is the quintessential LA crime story, and also once again proves the power of Russell Crowe's talent at making an interesting friendship be the emotional focal point of a film.