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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Five Best: Colin Farrell

courtesy of
This past Friday was the release of the horror film remake Fright Night, which is actually getting pretty decent reviews, thanks in part to the performance of Colin Farrell. He hasn't had an extensive career quite yet, but he has put in enough work for us to do our little retrospective. So, let's take a look at Colin Farrell's five best films so far, in chronological order.

Colin Farrell in "Phone Booth" courtesy of

Phone Booth (2002)

There are plenty of detractors of this film - if only because it's directed by Joel Schumacher. I would argue that it's a clever idea, executed successfully thanks to good performances and a never ending sense of amped up stress. The movie is basically in real-time, so every second counts. Farrell may have emerged on the scene before this film, but here he proves he can essentially carry a film on his own.

Tom Cruise and Colin Farrell in "Minority Report" courtesy of

Minority Report (2002)

I didn't love this adaptation of the Philip K. Dick short story, but I at least respect the skill it took to make it. Farrell starred alongside Tom Cruise in a science-fiction film about a crime unit who can capture criminals before they even commit their transgressions. Solid performances from the leads and the steady eye of Steven Spielberg make for a thrilling film with surprisingly deep ethical questions to discuss.

Colin Farrell in "The New World" courtesy of

The New World (2005)

Wow - it seems every movie on this list so far is very up for debate. Visionary director Terence Malick's tale of John Smith and Pocahontas and the clash around them between Native American and English settlers is paced very slowly, but beautifully shot and full of sweeping emotion. Farrell gives one of his more controlled performances, as the quiet (for the most part) rebel of his settlement. It's not for everybody, but it's certainly a gorgeous film.

Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson in "In Bruges" courtesy of

In Bruges (2008)

Farrell stretched his acting chops in 2008 with In Bruges, a hilarious dark comedy about two hitmen stuck in Bruges, Belgium after a hit goes wrong. Farrell and Gleeson play off of each other brilliantly as a terribly mismatched assassin team with very different mindsets on their situation, how they got there, and where to go from here. Supported by memorable turns from Ralph Fiennes and Jordan Prentice, this is still my favorite Farrell film, for sure.

Colin Farrell and Jeff Bridges in "Crazy Heart" courtesy of

Crazy Heart (2009)

Farrell got to show of his musical stylings here, playing  the up-and-coming former mentee of Jeff Bridges Oscar winner role as Bad Blake.Farrell gives a very nuanced performance as a man not far removed from Bridges, taking the consumerized road to music stardom. And those pipes aren't too bad either.

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