Greatest film actors

Discussion in 'Cactus Cafe' started by Art Vandelay, May 8, 2008.

  1. Art Vandelay

    Art Vandelay 500+ Posts

    So, the Brad Pitt discussion on the Seven thread got me thinking.... who are the greatest film actors of all time? (no, Brad is not one of them.....yet [​IMG] )

    It's not all that easy a list to compile. There are brilliant character actors, movie stars, great performances by actors who are otherwise merely "good", and there are likeable, personal favorites... and it's subjective as hell.

    Anyway, here are 10 names I came up with, in no particular order -- and I'm only talking men.

    Dustin Hoffman
    Robert Duvall
    Marlon Brando
    Jack Nicholson
    Laurence Olivier
    Robert DeNiro
    Gene Hackman
    Denzel Washington
    Paul Newman
    Johnny Depp

    Honorable mention: Al Pacino, only because I think he's become somewhat of a caricature of himself in the last 10-15 years.

    What are your 10?
  2. Mesohorny

    Mesohorny 1,000+ Posts

    nice list

    let me add Jimmy Stewart and Henry Fonda
  3. Rip76

    Rip76 1,000+ Posts

    Jack Lemmon
    Paul Newman
    Morgan Freeman
    Gary Oldman
    Robert Downey Jr.
    Robert DeNiro
    Sidney Poiter
    Dustin Hoffman
    Jack Nicholson
  4. TxStHorn

    TxStHorn 1,000+ Posts

    Sean Connery
    Robert Redford

    and of course, Shatner!
  5. RollingwoodHorn

    RollingwoodHorn 500+ Posts

    Jack Nicholson
    Jimmy Stewart
    Laurence Olivier
    Spencer Tracy
    Dustin Hoffman
    Marlon Brando
    Paul Newman
    Gary Cooper
    Daniel Day Lewis
    Cary Grant
  6. Bevoette

    Bevoette 1,000+ Posts

    I agree with a lot of those.
    I have to add

    George C. Scott
    Tom Hanks

    Gregory Peck , cant recall if I saw his name or not.
  7. THEU

    THEU 2,500+ Posts

    I agree with Gregory Peck, and I don't think he was mentioned before you Bevoette.

    Also, you said 'actors' that denotes males.

    Women who act are referred to as 'actresses.'
  8. TheRepublicOfTexas

    TheRepublicOfTexas 25+ Posts

    I think Anthony Hopkins has to be on that short list.
  9. mandingo

    mandingo 2,500+ Posts

    I'll go a little more recent...just to be different.

    Daniel Day Lewis
    Paul Giammatti
    Russell Crowe
    Kevin Spacey
    Johnny Depp
    Ralph Fiennes
    Christopher Walken
    Ben Kingsley
    Ian McShane
    Ray Winstone
    Clive Owen
    Benicio del Toro
    Leonardo DiCaprio
    Don Cheadle
  10. Napoleon

    Napoleon 2,500+ Posts

    mandingo, you obviously didn't read the note-

    "Since there is absolutely no way that more than one of the Top 10 actors of all time could be anything other than an American, please do not waste our time by listing fewer than 9 American actors. Thank you."
  11. mandingo

    mandingo 2,500+ Posts

    Well, all but but one of my furrenners can do a real good American accent, so I think they should count...(and he's Puerto Rican. Doesn't that kinda make him American, too?)
  12. Napoleon

    Napoleon 2,500+ Posts

  13. EJC+1

    EJC+1 250+ Posts

    Dustin Hoffman = terribly overrated.

    Every actor listed could "act circles" around Hoffman.
  14. Art Vandelay

    Art Vandelay 500+ Posts

    Wow. I don't know how you can say that about Hoffman. I think he's the most versatile actor on my list. And so many great filmes.... But, to each his own.

    Lots of good choices here and many I considered. One I totally whiffed on is Jack Lemon. Great actor.

    And to make Napolean feel better, I'll add Alec Guiness, Peter O'Toole and Charles Laughton

  15. DoobieWah

    DoobieWah 500+ Posts

  16. tjhooker

    tjhooker 25+ Posts

    Philip Seymour Hoffman
  17. The Eyes of Texas

    The Eyes of Texas 500+ Posts

    I would put Robert Shaw on the top 10 list if not in the top he died way too young.
  18. hornpharmd

    hornpharmd 5,000+ Posts

    Clive Owen....LOL

    I agree with the original list (although searching for the real vulnerable dramatic side of Depp at times, though I love his work), but agree on adding:

    del Toro
  19. Chest Rockwell

    Chest Rockwell 1,000+ Posts

    In my Top 10 that I haven't seen mentioned:Sean PennJohn Malkovich

    Anthony Hopkins
    Robert DeNiro
    Robert Duval
    Jack Nicholson
    Paul Newman
    Morgan Freeman
    Jack Lemmon

    Capable of nailing a role:

    Gene Hackman
    Al Pacino
    James Caan
    Samuel L. Jackson
    James Woods
    Kevin Spacey
    Joe Pesci
    Val Kilmer
    Michael Douglas
    Dennis Hopper
    George C. Scott

    Certainly in the conversation:

    Denzel Washington
    Tom Hanks
    Harrison Ford
    Leonardo DiCaprio


    Ed Norton
    Phillip Seymour Hoffman
    Djimon Hounsou
    Vincent D'Onofrio
    Christian Bale

    -- Hard to argue that John Cazale shouldn't at least be mentioned since he he starred in 5 feature films and all 5 were nominated for Best Picture.

    -- Christopher Walken?? (mandingo) No way. Might as well throw out Alec Baldwin's name. (also under-rated comedic actor who excels on SNL)
  20. airportlobby

    airportlobby 100+ Posts

  21. Eating Club

    Eating Club 250+ Posts

    Alec Baldwin is the greatest actor of our time.
  22. p_town_horn

    p_town_horn 1,000+ Posts

  23. nych 1

    nych 1 250+ Posts

    Best non-native English speaking actors:
    Gael Garcia Bernal
    Omar Sharif
    Toshiro Mifune
    Chow Yun-Fat
    Max Von Sydow
    Bruno Ganz
    Javier Bardem
    Gerard Depardieu
    Alain Delon
    Daniel Auteuil
    Marcello Mastroianni
    Jean-Paul Belmondo
    Min-sik Choi

    honorable mention to Argentinian athletes: Diego Maradona, Manu, Oberto, Scola, etc.
  24. chango

    chango 2,500+ Posts

    I would add Ken Watanabe to the above list.
  25. Napoleon

    Napoleon 2,500+ Posts

    In reply to:

  26. wacohorn27

    wacohorn27 25+ Posts

    Keanu Reeves.

    No, but seriously:
    Denzel Washington
    Tom Hanks
    Gary Oldman
    Johnny Depp
    Val Kilmer
    Tommy Lee Jones

    All deserve to be in any conversation involving great actors.

    wh [​IMG]
  27. I_Dont_Exist

    I_Dont_Exist 1,000+ Posts

    One name that seems to rarely be mentioned is one of my all-time favorites Burt Lancaster. I've heard it argued that he's more "movie star" than actor but his resume says otherwise.Great Films
    Seven Days in May
    Birdman of Alcatraz
    From Here to Eternity
    Elmer Gantry
    Sweet Smell of Success
    Judgement at Nuremberg
    The Young Savages


    Rocket Gibraltar
    Come Back, Little Sheba
    The Rainmaker
    Run Silent Run Deep
    The Train
    Field of Dreams
    Local Hero

    Very Good

    Twilight's Last Gleaming
    Go Tell the Spartans
    Valdez is Coming
    The Professionals
    Atlantic City
    Executive Action(not the Kurt Russell movie by the same name)
    The Gypsy Moths
    The Unforgiven
    Ulzana's Raid
    Tough Guys

    There's a few others worthy of listing but if those aren't enough to make a case then somebody's got a problem. One that I would highly
    recommend is The Young Savages which came out in 61 and was probably a bit ahead of its time. Also, The Hallelujah Trail is one of the funniest comedy/western's you'll ever see.
  28. Hornius Emeritus

    Hornius Emeritus 2,500+ Posts

    More than one page already and no mention of Clark Gable?
  29. mr. sunshine

    mr. sunshine 250+ Posts

    I was getting worked up about one glaring omission from the lists above. Then I read I Dont Exist's post. Nice work. Lancaster was the ****. I'd put 'Local Hero' under great, though.
  30. HornHuskerDad

    HornHuskerDad 5,000+ Posts

    No one's going to mention Kevin Costner?

    HHD [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

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