The Ten Most Underrated Kevin Spacey Performances

Kevin Spacey

Kevin Spacey may just be one of the greatest living actors working today, but not everyone has caught onto that fact. He has two Academy Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Awards, and a freshly minted Golden Globe Award (and that’s not even listing his other awards, honors, accolades, and achievements) but still people tend to overlook him as an actor. He even has roles in some of the most iconic films ever made including American Beauty, Se7en, and The Usual Suspects. Here are some films worth a second look from you!


K-Pax (2001)


This film was critically and commercially panned, a strange phenomenon considering he did it coming off the massive success of American Beauty. He plays a peculiar character named Prot that is as strange as he is endearing. This film is equal parts dramatic, philosophical, and funny, so it’s quite a ride.


Shrink (2009)


This was mostly an indie movie that didn’t make it far past the Sundance Festival crowd. Spacey plays a psychiatrist to the stars named Dr. Henry Carter that’s dealing with a personal crisis of his own that causes the entire fabric of his life to unravel right before his eyes. This is a personal favourite and one of his strongest, quietest performances to date. Definitely worth a second try for good and casual fans of the actor.


Moon (2009)


Spacey may just lend his voice to this role as an AI named Gerty, but he steals the show completely. There’s something about the cadence and tone of his voice that just makes you wish the entire movie was him talking. Considering he’s just doing a vocal performance, he is remarkably compelling.


Margin Call (2011)


This was a quiet movie about financial crisis that was one of Kevin’s most dramatic and “serious” roles in years. Though he received no recognition for it, he was praised highly by his peers and director. He, as Sam Rogers, delivers something that is emotional without being contrived, stoic without being stony.


Beyond The Sea (2004)


Spacey’s own passion project. Written, directed, and produced by him, he plays Bobby Darin throughout his career. He even sings each number in the picture by himself, which not only solidifies his role as an actor, writer, and director, but also as a consummate performer, dancing and singing like the best of them.


Outbreak (1995)


Spacey before Spacey was Kevin Spacey. He has a minor role in this as scientist Casey Schuler but the little time he has on screen, he manages to leave a lasting impression.


The Ref (1994)


A lighthearted comedy that takes place around Christmas that follows a family in ruin, Spacey plays Lloyd, a semi-neurotic, spineless husband that is forced to stand up for himself when his family is taken hostage by an incompetent house robber.


Midnight In The Garden of Good and Evil (1997)


As Jim Williams, Spacey delivers yet another masterful performance that was worthy of more praise, acclaim, and attention than it received. While he was still young in this role, he played the part of an aged antiques dealer with hypoglycemia like he actually was an aged antique dealer with hypoglycemia.  


A Time To Kill (1996)


This film has a formidable ensemble cast and Spacey holds his own amongst them. It’s a law and crime drama, which may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s worth the price of admission seeing such a talented group of actors come together to butt heads with one another throughout the film.


Swimming With Sharks (1994)
Again, one of Spacey’s earlier works, but one that showcases the full range of his capabilities as a performer. He’s loud, he’s funny, he’s quiet, he’s angry, he’s sad, and he’s everything in between, switching gears effortlessly. Certainly a must-see for any fan of great film, especially any fan of Kevin Spacey.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *