The Dude Abides: Every Jeff Bridges Movie, Ranked Worst to Best

From charming rascals to old coots, 'The Last Picture Show' to 'The Big Lebowski' – the iconic actor's greatest hits (and misses)

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1. 'The Fisher King' (1991)

Yes, The Big Lebowski features his most iconic role … but this one is of the greatest acting jobs by anybody, anywhere. True, Terry Gilliam's modern-day fable is usually discussed in terms of Robin Williams' admittedly wonderful performance as a former academic who's lost his mind, but what anchors the movie is Bridges. He plays a mouthy, shock-jock DJ whose live rants inspires a listener to go on a shooting rampage; he then finds himself brought cosmically low, stripped of his money and fame, living out his days as a suicidal alcoholic. Then one fateful night he's saved by Williams' holy fool, and everything changes. The director's expressionistic style and Richard LaGravenese's magical script turn late-Eighties New York into something out of a fairy tale, but none of it would work without Bridges' deeply engaged, end engaging, presence: He has to take this man who seems like the worst kind of real-life monster and transform him into someone we can not only relate to, but in whose survival we feel we have a stake. It's a terrifying, hilarious, appalling, touching and tense performance. It's the best of Bridges. Long live the King.

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