Best Tom Cruise Movies and Performances Ranked

With six decades around the sun, Tom Cruise still feels the need for speed and has developed himself into one of the most successful and undeniably talented movie stars of his generation, and of all time.

Variety ranks his 15 best movie performances to celebrate the actor’s 60th birthday.

With a breakthrough that began in the coming-of-age film “Risky Business” (1983), the Syracuse, New York-born actor became a darling of Hollywood and consumer audiences around the world. While Joseph Kosinski’s “Top Gun: Maverick” is still going strong, making over half a billion dollars domestically, Cruise has continued to etch himself into the cultural zeitgeist, crossing multiple generations.

He is also a producer and continued to take the entertainment medium to the next level with the “Mission: Impossible” franchise, which began in 1995. With five highly successful sequels and two more on the way, he continues to push the boundaries for himself as a fearless stuntman, and a silver screen advocate.

A career that only the most daring actors and creatives can dream of. Cruise has collaborated with two Best Actor winners – Paul Newman (“The Color of Money”) and Dustin Hoffman (“Rain Man”), and has earned three Oscar nominations. – “Born on July 4” (1989), “Jerry Maguire” (1996) and “Magnolia” (1999). But it wasn’t about the accolades for Cruise. In May 2021, he returned to his three Golden Globe Awards after exposing the Hollywood Foreign Press Association’s lack of diversity, specifically no black members.

Cruise’s films have grossed more than $10 billion worldwide and there are no signs of slowing down. Will he ever win a coveted Oscar? That remains to be seen, but the story is there, whether (or when?) the Academy decides to reward an upcoming project.

Read Varieties rankings of Tom Cruise’s best performances below:

Honorable Mentions: “Far and Away” (1992), “The Last Samurai” (2003), “Top Gun: Maverick” (2022)

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