John Cusack movies are now and have always been among my favorites. I love that man (and I know a certain colleague here at All Women Stalk who loves her some Lloyd Dobler!). I love him in comedies, dramas, romances – anything. There are so many really great John Cusack films that it's hard to pick just a few, but I've done my best, throwing in personal favorites as well as universal ones. Take a look at my opinion on the best John Cusack movies ever, and don't forget to chime in with your own favorites!
1. Say Anything
Say Anything is one of the most well known John Cusack movies ever – and one of the sweetest. John is like the godfather of all hipsters (and a lesson on how to do it right), and his turn as Lloyd Dobler changed the (fantasy) lives of girls and boys all over the world. This is a classic 1980s movie, and in an era where John Hughes ruled, John still stood out ahead of the pack. Lloyd is sympathetic but not sentimental, funny but not pandering, and adorable without being the classic hero.
2. Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil
Generally, people either really love this movie or really hate it. I really love it, and might count it as my favorite John Cusack movie, thanks to John himself, Kevin Spacey with his sexy Southern accent, Jude Law for his sneering prettiness, and the Lady Chablis simply for being the Lady Chablis. John himself captured the narration of John Berendt perfectly, and his chemistry with Kevin Spacey was just magical. Don't even get me started on the chemistry he shared with Chablis, either.
3. High Fidelity
High Fidelity is just such an awesome movie. It starts a little slow, but stick with it, because it's definitely worth the time. Rob is such a slacker, and yet there's something so charming about him, something so appealing. John Cusack is, for me, an ideal leading man, simply because you don't quite expect him to be one. He's not flashing his teeth, popping his collar, or flexing his muscles, he just is. Whether he's a jerk or a heartbroken angel, you're just there with him.
4. The Thin Red Line
I love war movies, which is why this is another one of my favorite John Cusack movies. It didn't get a lot of attention because it premiered at a time when war movies were all the rage, so pictures like Saving Private Ryan got most of the attention. However, you have to see Cusack as John Gaff, an amazingly sensitive, pensive captain whose performance is highlighted by a really amazing story and some astounding cinematography.
5. Grosse Pointe Blank
I love John Cusack films where you get to see him kick a little ass in his subtle, sarcastic way. I love seeing him slightly unhinged as well – and when he's funny while he's doing it, in that singularly wry, dry witted way of his? Sign me up for a double. This is dark comedy at its best, and what's even better is that John has excellent chemistry with Dan Ackroyd as well, even though you don't really see them together that often. It doesn't matter. That's what makes John Cusack such a great actor, though – he illuminates his costars, he can absorb their shine without stealing it and seamlessly share his own.
6. Being John Malkovich
Being John Malkovich is such a smart, weird movie. It's just kind of beautiful. Naturally, John Malkovitch himself is the standoff in this, and Cusack himself plays a different kind of role. So why do I mention this John Cusack film? Well, because the movie really is great, for starters. For another thing, you get to see John play the straight man – he's vulnerable and desperate and coming undone at the seams, and you don't often get to see that combination from the man.
7. The Grifters
This is one of the coolest John Cusack movies I've ever seen, and if you haven't, you need to post haste. He's so slick in this, so cool and styling and hot and sarcastic. You can actually feel how at ease he is in his own skin – and in the skin of Roy Dillon, for that matter. This film also proves why he's such a great leading man – because he's the antithesis of most leading man, so lax and laid back he's almost supine. I love that quality in anyone – guy or girl, actor or barista.
8. Bullets over Broadway
I'm generally a fan of Woody Allen, but what surprised me about this movie was that everyone thought the man was kind of done. Not so, because this film is just excellent. John Cusack is playwright David Shayne, who ends up co-writing with a very unlikely ally, and doing things he never thought he'd do in order to see his play reach Broadway. The rest of the cast is phenomenal as well, with everyone playing off each other so flawlessly that the end result is just … it's amazing.
9. Better off Dead
If you like older John Cusack films like Say Anything, you have to watch Better Off Dead. Lane Meyer is no Lloyd Dobler, it's true, but there are many similarties. You expect the movie to be campy, but it's really not, especially when you consider the messed up Meyer family. Lane himself is a really memorable character, so those of you who didn't fall head over heels for Lloyd may just fall for Lane.
There are tons of fantastic John Cusack movies, and he's awesome in pretty much all of them. His acting is stellar even in not so great movies, which is the mark of a good actor. In addition to his talent, there's something just understated and smart and sexy about him, he's just a joy to watch. Now, how about your choices for the best John Cusack movies?
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