The 10 best Leonardo DiCaprio movies, ranked

The revenant fn01Warner Bros.‘The Revenant.’

There are some Oscar categories each year that are decided long before the show starts, and this Sunday, that one you can bet the house on is Leonardo DiCaprio winning best actor for his all-in-including-eating-a-bison-liver performance in “The Revenant.”

This will mark the first time the actor has won the prize, and all we have to say to the Academy is: “Took you long enough!”

DiCaprio has been one of the biggest stars in Hollywood for decades, and though recently he’s focused on titles that will get him closer to that Oscar, his career has been filled with exceptionally strong performances (even if the movies haven’t always been that good).

To celebrate his career, we have come up with his 10 best performances, and ranked them for good measure.

10. 'Titanic' (1997)

20th Century Fox

It was the movie that made DiCaprio an international star. James Cameron's big-budgeted love story onboard the doomed R.M.S. Titanic showed that the actor could carry a major feature with his charisma (and heartthrob persona).

9. 'The Departed' (2006)

Warner Bros.

DiCaprio's third time working with Martin Scorsese led to the legendary director finally getting a best director Oscar. DiCaprio gives a solid performance playing an undercover cop. It's certainly not his best among the collaborations with Scorsese, but it's certainly not the worst, either.

8. 'Django Unchained' (2012)


Playing the sinister plantation owner Calvin Candie, DiCaprio is perfectly cast by Quentin Tarantino as the coconut drink-slurping psycho. His performance is over-the-top and he does quite well with Tarantino's unique brand of dialogue.

7. 'The Beach' (2000)

20th Century Fox

Still riding the wave of 'Titanic,' DiCaprio needed to change things up, and he did just that with Danny Boyle's 'Lord of the Flies'-like tale. DiCaprio showed here that he was still interested in taking chances, and he delivered one of his most interesting performances.

6. 'The Basketball Diaries' (1995)

New Line Cinema

Speaking of taking chances, this is still one of DiCaprio's most daring roles, as a high school junkie following his road to redemption. Trying to make that hard transition from child actor to more adult parts, he showed his fierce determination.

5. 'The Aviator' (2004)


His Oscar-nominated performance as legendary tycoon Howard Hughes is one that should have won him the Oscar. Playing Hughes from his heights as a Hollywood director and airline innovator to recluse was a feat that few could pull off. He does it exceptionally.

4. 'What's Eating Gilbert Grape' (1993)

Paramount Pictures

You likely had never heard of DiCaprio until this Oscar-nominated performance playing the disabled younger brother opposite Johnny Depp. DiCaprio gave a whole lot of people a look at the potential he had and the raw talent he possessed at age 19.

3. 'Catch Me If You Can' (2002)


Another milestone for DiCaprio, the film follows his portrayal of notorious real-life forger Frank Abagnale from his teens to his early 20s, and is believable at every turn (the actor was 28 at the time of shooting). The mix of Steven Spielberg's direction and DiCaprio's talents is a real treat. The two should work together more.

2. 'Inception' (2010)

Warner Bros.

Christopher Nolan's trippy mind-heist movie showcases DiCaprio's talents at an all-time high. Seen at times as a slick-dressed crook while at other moments a broken-down father desperate to get back to his family, it's a performance that doesn't get enough credit.

1. 'The Wolf of Wall Street'

Paramount Pictures

In the best collaboration between DiCaprio and Scorsese to date, DiCaprio seems to savour every moment playing infamous stock-broker Jordan Belfort, using words from the real man's own memoir. Harking back to Ray Liotta as Henry Hill in 'Goodfellas,' Scorsese gets DiCaprio to combine comedy and madness to deliver a performance that will go down as one of his all-time best -- and is his best, at least for now.

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