From toking up with Sean Penn’s Spicoli in Fast Times at Ridgemont High to waging chainsaw vengeance against the cultists that murdered his wife in Mandy — and beyond — Nicolas Cage has racked up more than 100 film credits over the last several decades, delivering performances that range from Oscar-winning (Leaving Las Vegas) to wildly over the top (Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans) and starring in blockbuster fare (The Rock, National Treasure) as well as acclaimed indies (Raising Arizona, Joe), and we wouldn’t want him any other way.
Rotten Tomatoes has ranked all 87 films of Nicolas Cage. We have picked the 20 best films.
1. Spider-Man: Into The Spider-verse (2018)
Phil Lord and Christopher Miller, the creative minds behind The Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street, bring their unique talents to a fresh vision of a different Spider-Man Universe, with a groundbreaking visual style that’s the first of its kind. “Spider-Man(TM): Into the Spider-Verse” introduces Brooklyn teen Miles Morales (Shameik Moore), and the limitless possibilities of the Spider-Verse, where more than one can wear the mask.
2. Red Rock West (1993)
When a promised job for Texan Michael fails to materialise in Wyoming, Mike is mistaken by Wayne to be the hitman he hired to kill his unfaithful wife, Suzanne. Mike takes full advantage of the situation, collects the money and runs. During his getaway, things go wrong, and soon get worse when he runs into the real hitman, Lyle.
3. Moonstruck (1987)
No sooner does Italian-American widow Loretta accept a marriage proposal from her doltish boyfriend, Johnny, then she finds herself falling for his younger brother, Ronny. She tries to resist, but Ronny lost his hand in an accident he blames on his brother, and has no scruples about aggressively pursuing her while Johnny is out of the country. As Loretta falls deeper in love, she comes to learn that she’s not the only one in her family with a secret romance.
4. Face/off (1997)
Sean Archer, a very tough, rugged FBI Agent, is still grieving for his dead son Michael. Archer believes that his son’s killer is his sworn enemy and a very powerful criminal, Castor Troy. One day, Archer has finally cornered Castor, however, their fight has knocked out Troy cold. As Archer finally breathes easy over the capture of his enemy, he finds out that Troy has planted a bomb that will destroy the entire city of Los Angeles and all of its inhabitants. Unfortunately the only other person who knows its location is Castor’s brother Pollux, and he refuses to talk.
5. Adaptation (2002)
While his latest movie Being John Malkovich (1999) is in production, screenwriter Charlie Kaufman is hired by Valerie Thomas to adapt Susan Orlean’s non-fiction book “The Orchid Thief” for the screen. Thomas bought the movie rights before Orlean wrote the book, when it was only an article in The New Yorker. The book details the story of rare orchid hunter John Laroche, whose passion for orchids and horticulture made Orlean discover passion and beauty for the first time in her life.
6. Mandy (2018)
Taking place in 1983, Red is a lumberjack who lives in a secluded cabin in the woods. His artist girlfriend Mandy spends her days reading fantasy paperbacks. Then one day, she catches the eye of a crazed cult leader, who conjures a group of motorcycle-riding demons to kidnap her. Red, armed with a crossbow and custom Axe, stops at nothing to get her back, leaving a bloody, brutal pile of bodies in his wake.
7. Raising Arizona (1987)
Recidivist hold-up man H.I. McDonnough and police woman Edwina marry, only to discover they are unable to conceive a child. Desperate for a baby, the pair decide to kidnap one of the quintuplets of furniture tycoon Nathan Arizona. The McDonnoughs try to keep their crime secret, while friends, co-workers and a feral bounty hunter look to use Nathan Jr.
8. Teen Titans Go! To The Movies (2018)
It seems to the Teens that all the major superheroes out there are starring in their own movies-everyone but the Teen Titans, that is. But de facto leader Robin is determined to remedy the situation, and be seen as a star instead of a sidekick. If only they could get the hottest Hollywood film director to notice them.
9. Leaving Las Vegas (1995)
Because his wife left him and took his son with her, screenwriter Ben Sanderson has started drinking, a lot. He’s getting more and more isolated and he troubles women in bars because he wants to have sex with them. When he gets fired, he decides to leave everything behind and move to Las Vegas and drink himself to death. In Las Vegas he meets Sera, a prostitute with some problems as well who he moves in with.
10. Color Out Of Space (2019)
A story of cosmic terror about The Gardners, a family who moves to a remote farmstead in rural New England to escape the hustle of the 21st century. They are busy adapting to their new life when a meteorite crashes into their front yard. The mysterious aerolite seems to melt into the earth, infecting both the land and the properties of space-time with a strange, otherworldly color.
11. Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call New Orleans (2009)
After Katrina, police sergeant Terence McDonagh rescues a prisoner, hurts his back in the process and earns a promotion to lieutenant plus an addiction to cocaine and painkillers. Six months later, a family is murdered over drugs; Terence runs the investigation. His drug-using prostitute girlfriend, his alcoholic father’s dog, run-ins with two old women and a well-connected john, gambling losses, a nervous young witness, and thefts of police property put Terence’s job and then his life in danger.
12. Joe (2014)
In order to provide for his destitute family of drifters, a likable, sincere, able-bodied 15-year-old boy comes to hire on among a burned-out ex-con’s group of aging forest laborers. As the man becomes more and more aware of the boy’s abusive home life, his deeply buried humanity is roused. Drinking and smoking incessantly to remain detached from his volatile temper, he finally takes the matter into his own hands – come what may – when the boy’s alcoholic father finally goes too far.
13. Peggy Sue Got Married (1986)
Peggy Sue was one of the most popular girls in high school, enjoying life with her friends and her boyfriend Charlie. It was the typical high school dream, until she finds herself married to Charlie and becoming a young mother. However, her life takes a serious turn, leaving her depressed and facing divorce when Charlie runs off with another woman. At her high school reunion, Peggy Sue faints and wakes up back in high school.
14. Birdy (1984)
Philly boys Al and Birdy became friends in high school despite the extreme difference in their personalities, Al being the popular and athletic extrovert, Birdy the antisocial “weird” introvert. Al gave Birdy his nickname because of his fascination – obsession really – with birds, especially with flight. Al and Birdy have just completed their service of duty in the Vietnam War and have returned to the States. Al sustained some serious physical injuries, which required major reconstructive surgery to his face.
15. Matchstick Men (2003)
Meet Roy and Frank, a couple of professional small-time con artists. What Roy, a veteran of the grift, and Frank, his ambitious protégé, are swindling these days are “water filtration systems,” bargain-basement water filters bought by unsuspecting people who pay ten times their value in order to win bogus prizes like cars, jewelry and overseas vacations–which they never collect. These scams net the flim-flam men a few hundred here, another thousand there, which eventually adds up to a lucrative partnership. Roy’s private life, however, is not so successful.
16. Valley Girl (1983)
Julie, a girl from the valley, meets Randy, a punk from the city. They are from different worlds and find love. Somehow they need to stay together in spite of her trendy, shallow friends.
17. Fast Times At Ridgemont High (1982)
Follows a group of high school students growing up in southern California, based on the real-life adventures chronicled by Cameron Crowe. Stacy Hamilton and Mark Ratner are looking for a love interest, and are helped along by their older classmates, Linda Barrett and Mike Damone, respectively. The center of the film is held by Jeff Spicoli, a perpetually stoned surfer dude who faces off with the resolute Mr. Hand, who is convinced that everyone is on dope.
18. Kick-ass (2010)
Dave Lizewski is an unnoticed high school student and comic book fan with a few friends and who lives alone with his father. His life is not very difficult and his personal trials not that overwhelming. However, one day he makes the simple decision to become a super-hero even though he has no powers or training.
19. Mom And Dad (2018)
Something terrible is definitely happening in the a peaceful suburban community as, day by day, former caring parents mysteriously turn into ravenous carriers of an unfathomable pandemic that targets their offspring. Suddenly, like every son and daughter in the entire nation, teenage Carly and Josh Ryan must run for their lives, as the rage-filled murderous intent is as unstoppable as it is inexplicable.
20. The Cotton Club (1984)
The Cotton Club was a famous Harlem nightclub. This is the story of the people who visited this club as well as the people who ran it, and the film is generously peppered with the jazz music that made the Cotton Club so renowned in the 1920s and 1930s.