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2013 MMVAs on June 16!
Finale Friday 7E/4P
February 18th, 2010
In honour of tomorrows release of Shutter Island, starring my boy Leo (hubba hubba!), today’s Top Ten will feature my favourite Leonardo DiCaprio films. You might be asking yourself, does he have more than ten films? Yes. He has eleven. I kid! I kid! The man has made a ridonkulous amount of films, with 27 in development (srsly, check out IMDB if you don’t believe me – it has never steered me wrong).
Some people pride themselves on their knowledge of fine wines, or books, or geography. I use my brain power to be a Leologist (a phase I’ve coined -feel free to use it, but only if you have spent years studying Leology).
Let us now proceed to the man, the face, the legend…
(Caution! List contains spoilers!)
1. Romeo and Juliet
If I am certain of one thing, it is that this is one of the greatest movies ever made. It is the love story of all time. There are few filmmakers that are so distinct that you can actually tell it’s their film when watching a movie. This is the case with Baz Lurhman. His modern-day setting of Romeo and Juliet, coupled with his incredible pop soundtrack (this man knows music), works effortlessly with the traditional text of Shakespeare’s classic. Leonardo is Romeo in this film. We all know the ending, but the intensity with which the film is shown and the chemistry between Leo and Claire Danes makes the viewer hold their breath until the last minute. See it!!!
Maybe you’ve seen it? I think so. This three hour epic about one of the great disasters of the twentieth century is set as the backdrop for one of the shortest and most intense love stories seen on the big screen. We all cheered when Rose left her fiancée for Jack, and we all sobbed when he died in the water. This film catapulted Leo and Kate Winslet into superstardom that was deserving of two of our generations greatest actors. Plus, you know that you have stood at the front of the boat and yelled “I’m king of the world!” It’s okay. I have too.
3. The Departed
There’s a whole lotta awesome-ness happening in this movie. You have Leo as an undercover agent that immerses himself in the mob world of Boston. You have Matt Damon, playing the villain, a role he perfected in School Ties. Then to round everything out, Vera Farmigam, Jack Nicholson, Martin Sheen and Alec Baldwin are perfect in their roles. Mark Wahlberg also kicks booty, but loses some points for that awful hair. Oh, and Martin Scorsese directs. I dare you to not like this movie!
4. Blood Diamond
Leo plays Archer, a man living in Sierra Leone during its civil war in the ‘90s. He has survived the war as a one man army, looking for the best way to make money off the blood diamond trade. Upon meeting Solomon, a man whose family has been captured by the rebels, and Maddy, an American journalist, Archer embarks on his biggest conquest that will change his life permanently. Leo was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his role in the film. He also managed to master the difficult South African accent. Had this not gone well, I think the film would have appeared much less believable.
5. Gangs of New York
This is a gory one! Srsly, this film has some of the most graphic and bloody fight scenes that I have watched on screen. Daniel Day-Lewis is a terrifying villain as Bill the Butcher. Cameron Diaz’s acting in this film makes me wonder why she continues to do craptastic rom com’s when she’s actually a good actress (I was genuinely surprised, anyone else?). And Leo…oh Leo. He is a man with nothing to lose, and spends his life seeking revenge over the death of his father. Bad. Ass.
6. The Basketball Diaries
My study of Leogoly really started shaping up around in my early teens, and in my quest to consume all things Leo, I read Jim Carroll’s The Basketball Diaries. I knew that Leo was in the film based on the autobiography written by Carroll, so I thought I’d do my research before seeing the film. It’s an amazing work of literature, and Carroll writes like a poet, but it’s incredibly graphic description of drug use, prostitution and assault is alarming and terrifying. I went into the film thinking that there was no way that the grittiness, terror and pain that was so overwhelming in the book could translate onto screen. It did. Leonardo is able to embody characters to such a degree that the viewer often forgets that they are watching a fictional film and not a true documentary. Mark Wahlberg’s performance also foreshadowed his success as an actor in his adult years. Big viewer discretion on this film!
7. This Boys Life
And onto the next viewer discretion. Leo really went out of his way to take on only dramatic film roles in his youth, I assume in an attempt to prove himself as a credible actor. It worked. In this film, Leo plays the stepson of an abusive Robert DeNiro, set in Washington during the 1960s. The film is based on the autobiography of writer Tobias Wolff. Many scenes in the film are difficult to watch, mostly because of the realism and depth displayed by Leo and DeNiro.
8. What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
Although Johnny Depp and Juliette Lewis were pegged as the break-out stars of this film, Leo’s portrayal of a teenager with severe autism garnered accolades for the respect and realness he brought to the role. In the role of Arnie, we see a side of Leo that is not present in any of his other films, yet this remains one of his best and most memorable characters to date.
9. Revolutionary Road
Kate Winslet and Leonardo reunite for a very different type of love story than Titanic. They play a couple that have become bored with their lives and are in conflict over how to change their situation, especially with the backdrop of conformity that was heavily present in the 1950s. Their chemistry that was so evident in Titanic stood the test of time and translated onto the screen in Revolutionary Road.
10. Catch Me If You Can
Leonardo plays the role of Frank Abganale Jr., one of the most successful con mans ever. Tom Hanks is the FBI agent that spends years trying to catch Frank and eventually finds a friend a colleague in the imposter. Leonardo plays a bad guy who you can’t help but root for in the cat and mouse chase.
Tags: Alec Baldwin, Baz Lurhman, Blood Diamond, Cameron Dias, Catch Me If You Can, Claire Danes, Daniel Day-Lewis, Gangs of New York, Jack Nicholson, Jim Carroll, Johnny Depp, Juliette Lewis, Kate Winslet, Leonardo DiCaprio, Mark Wahlberg, Martin Scorse, Martin Sheen, matt damon, Revolutionary Road, Robert DeNiro, Romeo and Juliet, School Ties, Shutter Island, The Basketball Diaries, The Departed, This Boys Life, Titanic, Tobias Wolff, tom hanks, Vera FarmigamTweet