Robert De Niro's Best, Worst and Craziest Performances

From 'Raging Bull' to 'Rocky & Bullwinkle'

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Ugly: 'Awakenings' (1990)

Acting challenges don't get much harder than playing characters with neurological conditions, and if Awakenings doesn't feature one of De Niro's very best performances it certainly features what must have been one of his most difficult. His Leonard Lowe is a man who revives from decades-long catatonic state thanks to an experimental treatment administered by Dr. Malcolm Sayer (Robin Williams, playing a fictionalized version of Oliver Sacks, who wrote the memoir on which it's based). De Niro is convincing as both a catatonic and as a man in the grips of tics and spasms as the treatment starts to fail. It's hard to watch largely because he makes it seem so uncomfortably real. KP

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