Joaquin Phoenix

Role: 

Irrational Man

Soon after arriving to teach at a small town college, Abe Lucas (Joaquin Phoenix) gets involved with two women: Rita Richards (Parker Posey), a lonely professor who wants him to rescue her from her unhappy marriage: and Jill Pollard (Emma Stone), his best student, who becomes his closest friend. While Jill loves her boyfriend Roy (Jamie Blackley), she finds Abe's d, artistic personality and exotic past irresistible. Pure chance changes everything when Abe and Jill overhear a stranger's conversation, and when Abe makes a profound choice, he is able to embrace life to the fullest again.

Her

From the unique perspective of Oscar-nominated filmmaker Spike Jonze (Being John Malkovich, Adaptation) comes an original love story that explores the evolving nature -- and the risks -- of intimacy in the modern world. Set in the Los Angeles of the slight future, Her follows Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix), a complex, soulful man who makes his living writing touching, personal letters for other people.

We Own The Night

In We Own the Night, Joaquin Phoenix, whose eyes burn with sullen anger even when he's looking at the woman he loves, plays Bobby Green, a nightclub manager in the 1980s who gets caught between his blood family he tried to leave behind--a long line of police officers--and his chosen family of friends and business partners, who turn out to be drug dealers. His father (Robert Duvall) and brother (Mark Wahlberg) want Bobby to help their investigation, but Bobby resists--until the conflict takes a brutal turn.

Walk The Line

A solid and entertaining biopic, Walk the Line works less as a movie than an actors' showcase for its stars. Joaquin Phoenix's total immersion into the skin of singer Johnny Cash is startling--watching it, you can't believe this is the same guy who whined about being "vexed" in Gladiator. As he evolves from a farm boy to gospel croonin' plunker to the Man in Black, Phoenix disappears into Cash's deep baritone, his way of slinging the guitar onto his back, and his hunched-up style of strumming.

Hotel Rwanda

Solidly built around a subtle yet commanding performance by Don Cheadle, Hotel Rwanda emerged as one of the most highly-praised dramas of 2004. In a role that demands his quietly riveting presence in nearly every scene, Cheadle plays real-life hero Paul Rusesabagina, a hotel manager in the Rwandan capital of Kigali who in 1994 saved 1,200 Rwandan "guests" from certain death during the genocidal clash between tribal Hutus, who slaughtered a million victims, and the horrified Tutsis, who found safe haven or died.

The Village

M. Night Shyamalan, the director who brought you the world's greatest thrillers (The Sixth Sense, Signs, Unbreakable) on DVD, now creates his most thought-provoking triumph yet... breaking international records and dazzling audiences around the globe! The Village is a smart, edge-of-your-seat chiller crawling with terrifying surprises and frightening twists and turns. An isolated, tight-knit community lives in mortal fear of an oppressive evil inhabiting the forbidden forest just beyond their tiny village. So frightening that no one ventures into the woods...

Signs

In Bucks County, Pennsylvania, a five-hundred-foot crop circle is found on the farm of Graham Hess, the town's reverend. The circles cause a media frenzy and test Hess's faith as he journeys to find out the truth behind the crop circles. You'll enjoy a fine performance by Mel Gibson as a widower whose own crisis of faith coincides with the appearance of mysterious crop circles in his Pennsylvania cornfield... and hundreds of UFOs around the globe.

Gladiator

A big-budget summer epic with money to burn and a scale worthy of its golden Hollywood predecessors, Ridley Scott's Gladiator is a rousing, grisly, action-packed epic that takes moviemaking back to the Roman Empire via computer-generated visual effects. While not as fluid as the computer work done for, say, Titanic, it's an impressive achievement that will leave you marveling at the glory that was Rome, when you're not marveling at the glory that is Russell Crowe.

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