Photo: © 2000 Dreamworks LLC & Universal Pictures, All Rights Reserved
Bloody as it was, we loved Crowe as Maximus Decimus Meridius, the sexy and powerful Roman general who is imprisoned and condemned to gladiator games after the death of emperor Marcus Aurelius. From brave general to fugitive to slave to heroic gladiator, Crowe delivers a performance of epic proportions.
Photo: © 2001 Imagine Entertainment, All Rights Reserved
2. A Beautiful Mind
The Aussie import exposes his tender side in this true story about John Nash Jr., a mathematician battling schizophrenia. In his Oscar®-nominated performance, Crowe brilliantly executes Nash's slow descent into mental illness, while capturing the essence of raw human emotion.
Photo: © Warner Brothers, All Rights Reserved
3. L.A. Confidential
Playing one of LAPD's finest, Crowe's Wendall "Bud" White hones his crime-solving skills to investigate a coffee shop massacre. Though Bud is plenty flawed, Crowe's portrayal of the cop on a quest for justice is anything but.
Photo: © Touchstone Pictures, All Rights Reserved
4. The Insider
We were on Team Russell when he played Jeffrey Wigand, an employee who was scrutinized for blowing the whistle on the tobacco industry in this true story based on a CBS 60 Minutes episode. As Crowe's character discloses his former company's business malpractices, he has us all questioning the asking price of the truth.
Photo: © 2000 Castle Rock Entertainment, All Rights Reserved
5. Proof of Life
Crowe delivers yet another solid performance as Terry Thorne, a hostage negotiator who flies to Columbia to obtain the release of a U.S. corporate executive. He breathes life into the film as he finds love with the executive's wife. Crowe's negotiating skills throughout the flick had us more than willing to compromise.
Photo: © Warner Bros. Pictures
6. Body of Lies
Crowe, who plays a veteran CIA agent alongside Leonardo DiCaprio, had us wishing we were on the other line of that cell phone headset. We were on the edge of our seats as the two launched a plan to combat modern warfare. This is a duo we'd be happy to be in the trenches with.
© Samuel Goldwyn Co, All Rights Reserved
7. The Sum of Us
In one of his gentler roles, Crowe plays Jeff Mitchell, a gay son looking for Mr. Right with the support of his widowed heterosexual father, who's ready for a second chance at love. Jeff's search for a soul mate and the warmth with which Crowe depicts the father-son relationship is enough to make the coldest heart sizzle.