The other day I was telling my buddy about one of the most underrated films ever that also happens contain one of the most underrated actors. Then I started recollecting some of my all-time favorite actors and there are a few that can fall in the underrated category. That being said, here is a list of some of my favorite underrated actors. I have also noted my favorite movie they were credited in as well as my favorite role they have landed.
15. Matthew Lillard
Favorite Movie: Scream
Favorite Role: Stu Macher, Scream
Lillard has appeared in several decent flicks such as Scooby Doo, Without a Paddle, Summer Catch and Thirteen Ghosts. He really hit gold as ghost face in the best horror movie ever made, Scream. There was the just complete disappointment when he was revealed as one half of the ghost face serial killers. Why Stu! Lillard is an underrated comedic relief. “YA HIT ME WITH THE PHONE DICK!”
14. Adam Scott
Favorite Movie: Step Brothers
Favorite Role: Griff, Boy Meets World (TV Show)
Although Scott is more a supporting actor in many of his roles, he is freaking hilarious. Plus he hasn’t had a carb since 2004. However, he may splurge at the fucking Catalina Wine Mixer.
13. Ray Winstone
Favorite Movie: The Departed
Favorite Role: Mr. French, The Departed
Winstone is a lesser named actor, but you’ll probably know his face. He basically plays the muscle in every role he is in. He blew it out of the water as Mr. French. Someone get him a…
12. Bill Hader
Favorite Movie: Superbad
Favorite Role: Officer Slater, Superbad
Although I haven’t seen Barry on HBO, I have heard great things which is no surprise. He does more voice acting than anything as of late, but nonetheless, he is great. I loved that he was casted as Alpha in the attempted Power Rangers reboot. That movie was awesome. I am also excited to see him in Chapter II of It.
11. Cillian Murphy
Favorite Movie: Inception
Favorite Role: Jackson Rippner, Red Eye
Much like Hader with his hit show, I need to watch Peaky Blinders as I have heard Murphy is fantastic in that. He was much bigger when I was entering high school when he starred in Batman Begins as Scarecrow and of course reprised the role as minor parts in The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. My favorite role came in Red Eye as he played this smooth, suave sadistic hitman basically.
10. Robert Duvall
Favorite Movie: The Godfather
Favorite Role: Tom Hagen, The Godfather
Tom Freaking Hagen that is all I need. Duvall has a full laundry list of great roles due to a long and illustrious career. But all you need to know is Tom Hagen.
9. James Caan
Favorite Movie: The Godfather
Favorite Role: Sonny Corleone, The Godfather
Honorable Mention: Paul Sheldon, Misery
Another Godfather actor, Caan is another seasoned vet with a long list of titles. I can’t decide what I liked him more in. He was fantastic as the hot-headed Sonny Corleone and he also did great dialing it back as the scared bed ridden abducted author in Misery.
8. Jason Segel
Favorite Movie: I Love You Man
Favorite Role: Marshall Eriksen, How I Met Your Mother (TV Show)
I love Segel’s humor and nerdiness. It reminds me a lot of me. Although, he plays similar roles in most of the things he is in, it never gets old.
7. Josh Brolin
Favorite Movie: The Goonies
Favorite Role: Detective Trupo, American Gangster
He is one of the actors on this list that may not be underrated simply because he plays arguably the biggest villain in entertainment right now (Thanos). So I may be off base, but I do like Brolin a lot. Of course The Goonies is a timeless classic. But he has a list of movies I really enjoyed that aren’t as popular such as Into the Blue, Nightwatch and Gangster Squad.
6. Philip Seymour Hoffman
Favorite Movie: Scent of a Woman
Favorite Role: Paul Zara, The Ides of March
RIP. Unfortunately it is another case of a great talent taken by drug use. He passed at 46 but damn if he didn’t have some great movies billed to his name. Without Seymour Hoffman, we would have never gotten the amazing basketball scene in Along Came Polly.
5. Djimon Hounsou
Favorite Movie: Blood Diamond
Favorite Role: Jean Roqua, Never Back Down
You want to talk about a heavy hitter in Hollywood. He has been billed in some great movies like Amistad, Gladiator and of course Blood Diamond. He has most recently broken into the ultra popular Marvel Universe. I feel like he is absolutely one of those guys you would never know by name, but when you see his face, you get the A-Ha moment.
4. Idris Elba
Favorite Movie: American Gangster
Favorite Role: Shere Khan, The Jungle Book
He is another actor that I am unsure whether or not to call underrated. The dude was recently voted sexiest man alive. So he obviously has popularity, but even then it still feels he doesn’t get enough credit for his on-screen performances. One of my favorite scenes was in American Gangster, the infamous stand off between he and Denzel Washington. That was two major alphas toe to toe. It obviously ends with him getting shot in broad daylight. But the tension created one of the most powerful scenes ever.
3. Kevin Bacon
Favorite Movie: X-Men First Class
Favorite Role: Sean Nokes, Sleepers
Kevin Bacon is the man. I don’t care what anyone says. He has so many movies billed to his name that are all-time favorites for me such as the two mentioned as well as Footloose and A Few Good Men. But the first movie I always associate with Kevin Bacon is Sleepers. As the main antagonist of the film, he does such an amazing job in that role. Considering that movie in and of itself is one of the most underrated ever, it is only fitting that the actor gets that nod as well.
2. Sean Penn
Favorite Movie: Fast Times At Ridgemont High
Favorite Role: Sam, I Am Sam
Sean Penn is one of the most diverse actors around from playing stoner Jeff Spicoli to mentally challenged Sam to gay politician Harvey Milk to crime boss Mickey Cohen. He has nailed every single one of the roles. One of my favorites monologues from him came in Gangster Squad when he talked about progress.
1. Michael B Jordan
Favorite Movie: Hardball
Favorite Role: Erik Killmonger, Black Panther
Slap me now if you must but he is number one and that is without seeing either of the Creed movies. I know. I need to ASAP. Michael B Jordan might be my favorite young actor around right now which is why I have sitting with the top spot. So there is definitely some bias at play. It is crazy to think he played Jamal in Hardball. For most, that is probably the first movie they saw him in without even realizing it. He’s landed some pretty dope roles as of recently including the two mentioned with Creed and Erik Killmonger. He is obviously the better Michael Jordan. @ me