A Guide to Alan Rickman Movies
Over the years, many of Alan Rickman’s movies have resulted in new pop culture sound bites. Whether it’s his voice, sheer talent, or charismatic screen presence, his performances leave their mark. Let’s review some of the films and roles that will remain forever his.
In Die Hard’s Hans Gruber, Rickman created the modern villain that all others aspire to become. Gruber’s sharp suit and silky manners masked a brilliant mind and a malevolent streak a mile wide. How good of a villain was he? Well, Gruber is #48 in the American Film Institute’s Top 50 list of villains.
Truly, Madly, Deeply
Truly, Madly, Deeply came after Die Hard and showed Rickman in a more dramatic light. The temperamental and charming ghost Jamie returns to guide his inconsolable wife through the stages of grief. Rickman gives an endearing and funny performance in a supporting role that ranks high on any fan’s list.
Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
As the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, an over-the-top Rickman careens between misplaced cheerfulness and cold cruelty. His devious yet witty sheriff flings one-liners in every direction. Each one hits its mark. This comedic side is again displayed in Alan Rickman’s Galaxy Quest role. More on that in a bit.
Sense and Sensibility
Sense and Sensibility gave Rickman the rare chance to play a romantic character. His mature Colonel Brandon is a patient and steadfast suitor faithfully lingering until Kate Winslet’s Marianne comes to her senses.
In the cult classic Dogma, the actor makes an indelible impression as the Metatron. He’s a grumpy angel who acts as the Voice of God. His sarcastic angel is both majestic and hilarious. His latest mission, helping a mortal prevent the end of all existence, does not improve his mood. In a list of Alan Rickman movies, Dogma would easily rate in the top five.
In Galaxy Quest, Alan Rickman is the hopelessly typecast British actor Alexander Dane stuck playing the half-human, half-alien TV show character Dr. Lazarus. Lazarus’ signature phrase, “By Grabthar’s Hammer, you shall be avenged!” is echoed at fan conventions all over the world.
The Harry Potter series earned Rickman a legion of younger fans. Playing the unlikable but strangely sympathetic Professor Severus Snape, Rickman developed a complex character that remained ambiguous, fascinating and mysterious through eight movies. Definitely the most successful Alan Rickman movies, that’s for sure.
Rickman played a less likable character named Harry in Love Actually. Married Harry embarks on an affair with an alluring co-worker. He’s forced to choose between saving his marriage or getting a divorce. Despite limited screen time, Rickman managed to give Harry just enough personality and inner conflict to not be one-dimensional.
No matter the role, Alan Rickman always brought his characters to life, making for must-watch movies.