Leonardo DiCaprio has long been a very popular individual when it comes to Hollywood, though it took a while for him to really break past being the pretty boy that could act but never seem to get the award he was seeking. He’s been nominated so many times that people have been gnashing their teeth wondering when his name was finally going to come out of the envelope for an Academy, but finally during the Revenant he was given that honor, breaking the long drought that many thought would never end. But in truth he’s won so many awards that the one shouldn’t have mattered at that point. But the vindication seems as though it was enough for many, while his career has continued forward and allowed him to gain a new measure of respect among his peers and his fans. He’s been great for a while, that small golden man only seemed to reaffirm it for those that were more frustrated than he was.
Here are some of his best movies.
5. Blood Diamond
At this point a lot of us have heard about blood diamonds in one movie or another, and if you research them you might find that they’re all too real, as are the consequences for dealing in them. Some people decide to call them conflict diamonds instead, but the negative connotation is still there since they are typically used to fund some very nasty groups that believe they are fighting for a well-defined purpose. In this film it’s seen how the possession of a blood diamond can tear a person’s life apart and create the kind of conflict and harm that very few things in this world can do on their own.
It would be interesting to know what was going on throughout the sinking of the Titanic, how the people were reacting, and just what was happening as they tried to evacuate. The film took a lot of liberties no doubt, but the love story between Jack and Rose as after all one of the main points of the whole thing, while the actual sinking of the ship and the tragedy it caused was kind of a byproduct, a setting that highlighted their tryst in a way. If you can believe it some people have actually written articles in favor of Cal, claiming that Jack was the bad guy for duping Rose and seducing her. There are a lot of different lines of thought that are attributed to this film.
3. The Revenant
This was based on a true story but obviously the movie had to take a few creative liberties here and there to make it a little more palatable for the viewer. The bear attack however, the same one that had many people thinking that the bear was actually raping Leo, was apparently a real-life altercation that left the real Hugh Glass near death and all but abandoned by his fellow trappers. From there the movie kind of dips into fact and then makes up things as it goes since he and Fitzgerald never really went toe to toe in an epic confrontation. Instead Glass apparently spared Fitzgerald, who was later on shot by a US Army captain.
2. The Departed
In this movie a person is either a cop that’s ratting out to the mob or a mobster that’s ratting out to the cops. There aren’t a lot of innocents in this film since it’s a giant game of chess where the most expendable pieces aren’t the pawns, but the heavy hitters that play fast and loose with one another on a continual basis. Frank Costello is a psychotic mobster that will gladly kill anyone that stands in his way, but he’s a lousy judge of character since his mole in law enforcement could crack at any moment while the cop he doesn’t know about in his crew is the kind of cold-blooded individual that knows how to get the job done, despite the anxiety it causes him.
1. What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
This had to be a hard role for Leo to take on since Arnie is a mentally handicapped young man that acts almost completely on impulse and is difficult if not impossible to predict and take care of. He’s always dirty, he doesn’t pay attention to much of anything other than what catches his attention, and in this dysfunctional family he’s the only one that ever seems to find some form of happiness, no matter how much it vexes his brother and sisters. Gilbert is the one that has to weather the storm that is his family on a constant basis, but even he has his breaking point, as is seen when he hauls off and slaps Arnie when his brother won’t take his bath one night. It’s not a perfect family, but they make it work.
Leo deserved the Academy well before the Revenant, but now that he’s got it his career should be as stable as it will ever be.