Top 10: Tom Cruise Movies

Ed Savoy July 31, 2010 9

From jumping on a couch to jumping through hoops for Scientology, Tom Cruise has taken a lot of satirical abuse from everyone. But, with all of the fun we’ve had at Cruise’s expense, it pays to remember that he’s an actor first and a punch line second. A tour through his films can remind us of some things that his public image may not prepare us for.

10. Risky Business

For everyone who wonders what Tom Cruise looks like in his underwear, this is the film that made it possible. Cruise may have moved on to bigger and better things from here, but he’ll always have Bob Seeger to dance along with.

9. Mission Impossible

While Cruise in his underwear was a touchstone of the 80s, Cruise suspended from the ceiling, inches from the ground, is one of the iconic film images of the 90s. He probably appreciated the image shift.

8. Eyes Wide Shut

Cruise’s only collaboration with Stanley Kubrick and his final film with then-wife Nicole Kidman, this erotic thriller brought out a different Cruise, along with some different parts of Cruise.

7. Top Gun

It’s hard to forgive a movie that introduced us to Jerry Bruckheimer but, since it also brought us Meg Ryan, Anthony Edwards, and Cruise’s need for speed, we’ll forgive this 80’s classic.

6. War of the Worlds

Spielberg’s take on the science fiction classic mixed with post-9/11 themes and anxieties features Cruise playing a flawed, but determined father. It was more than enough to drive this film to great box office returns.

5. Magnolia

While only part of an ensemble cast that features Phillip Seymour Hoffman and William H. Macy, Cruise manages to steal the show, earning himself an Oscar nomination and reminding us that he’s not just another pretty face.

4. Collateral

Tom Cruise as a hit man sounds like a set-up for a skit, not a movie. But, his portrayal of a chilly assassin proves that the idea is not in the least bit funny.

3. A Few Good Men

Having to act alongside Jack Nicholson usually means that all available scenery will be eaten before you have a chance to pick up a fork. But, Cruise manages to play off Jack and continue his search for the truth.

2. Rain Man

Cruise seems to be at his best playing smooth, cocksure men and the directors who work with him best know how to use that skill and break it down further. In so doing, Barry Levinson excels at showing how Cruise comes to grips with a brother he never knew he had.

1. Jerry Maguire

Show me the money! You had me at hello. We all know these lines like we know our shoe size. It’s because of Cruise that these lines have a home and a place in this film about the rebirth of a sports agent and a man.

Whether we’re at the movies or watching his real-life exploits, Tom Cruise is always good for drama, laughs, and some unexpected twists. Whatever he might be doing, he takes our breath away.


  1. Luke August 3, 2010 at 6:16 am -

    How could you forget “The Color of Money”?!? One of my all time favorites!
    Including Newman and Scorcese :-)

  2. top ten lists August 3, 2010 at 9:38 pm -

    For me Tom Cruise is a legend , i saw his recent movie “Knight & Day” her co-star Cameron Diaz both have a good chemistry on screen they both are exceptional in their work.

  3. Judith September 7, 2010 at 6:16 pm -

    Majority Report ispowerful; Collateral is very under appreciated. My favorite is “The Last Samurai.” He is willing to take so many diverse roles….he is one of the best.

    • ateemi November 15, 2010 at 12:01 am -

      MINORITY REPORT (not Majority Report)

      fyi thanks

    • imillard October 29, 2011 at 5:07 pm -

      I must agree. “The Last Samurai” is far and away the best Cruise film. And other than Top Gun, it’s the only one I would watch more than once.

  4. ateemi November 14, 2010 at 11:35 pm -

    every time i watch his movie, it seems like he wears a new nose

  5. Patrick Bateman November 23, 2010 at 2:33 am -

    I liked him in Cocktail.

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  7. Avid September 2, 2011 at 2:38 am -

    My favorite hero….all of his movies are best…his action stunts are awesome..:)