- Though Steve Carell may be best known for his role as Michael Scott in “The Office,” Carell also has had a successful film career.
- He has performed in successful comedies including “Anchorman,” “The 40-Year-Old Virgin,” and “Despicable Me.”
- He has also recently started taking on more serious roles in films like “Beautiful Boy” and “Welcome to Marwen.”
- Using data from Rotten Tomatoes, INSIDER has ranked all of Steve Carell’s 38 movies from worst to best, according to critics.
In the past, Steve Carell might have been best known for his comedic performance as the blundering office manager Michael Scott on NBC’s “The Office.”
However, his film career has been just as successful with performances in “Anchorman,” “Crazy, Stupid, Love,” and “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.” And who could forget his distinctive voice as Gru from the “Despicable Me” franchise?
In recent years, Carell has been acting in more serious films as well, taking on roles in movies like “Beautiful Boy” and “Welcome to Marwen.”
To take a look at Carell’s movie repertoire, INSIDER has ranked all of Steve Carell’s 38 movies from worst to best, using ratings from Rotten Tomatoes
“Curly Sue” (1991) scored 13%.
Carell’s first-ever film role was as the waiter Tesio in the 1991 John Hughes film “Curly Sue.” He didn’t have any lines and wasn’t on screen for very long, but he still said he was nervous about the role.
“I shot for three days and I was incredibly excited and I couldn’t have been more nervous,” he told IMDb.
“Sleepover” (2004) scored 15%.
Just after filming “Anchorman” in 2004, Carell took a role in “Sleepover,” about teenage girls competing in a scavenger hunt. Carell played their nemesis, a security guard named Officer Sherman Shiner, complete with a mustache.
“Evan Almighty” (2007) scored 23%.
In the spin-off sequel to “Bruce Almighty,” Carell played Congressman Evan Baxter in the 2007 film “Evan Almighty,” where God tells Evan Baxter to build an ark to save himself and animals from a flood.
Though “Bruce Almighty” did alright, “Evan Almighty” only made out with a 23% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Bewitched” (2005) scored 24%.
“Bewitched,” a 2005 rom-com starring Nicole Kidman and Will Ferrell, is about an actor who discovers that his co-star for a remake of the television show “Bewitched,” is actually a witch.
The film only got 24% on Rotten Tomatoes, with Carell playing Uncle Arthur.
“Welcome to Marwen” (2018) scored 30%.
In one of Carell’s newest films – released on December 21, 2018 – he plays the lead character Mark Hogancamp, a victim of a violent assault that leaves him with no memories of his life before he was attacked.
“Welcome to Marwen”, based on a true story, has so far only scored 30% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“The Incredible Burt Wonderstone” (2013) scored 37%.
In the 2013 comedy, “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone,” Carell plays Vegas magician Burt Wonderstone, who has to save his act after his partner quits and other magicians compete against him.
Though the comedy had stars such as Steve Buscemi, Olivia Wilde, and Jim Carrey, “The Incredible Burt Wonderstone” only scored 37% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Dinner for Schmucks” (2010) scored 42%.
Carell plays Barry in the 2010 film “Dinner for Schmucks,” a man who makes dioramas with taxidermied mice and gets invited to a “dinner for idiots” by an executive trying to make a good impression on his bosses, played by Paul Rudd. The film got 42% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Freeheld” (2015) scored 48%.
The 2015 drama “Freeheld” is about a female police lieutenant and her domestic partner. This is a bit more serious than Carell’s traditional comedy roles. He played Steven Goldstein, the founder of Garden State Equality.
“Bruce Almighty” (2003) scored 49%.
In the 2003 film “Bruce Almighty,” Carell plays Evan Baxter, a news reporter who would go on to become a Congressman in the spin-off, “Evan Almighty” in 2007. Though the film only scored 49%, it was significantly better than “Evan Almighty,” which scored 23%.
“Get Smart” (2008) scored 50%.
“Get Smart” is a 2008 remake of the 1965 television series of the same name and it scored 50% on Rotten Tomatoes. Carell plays socially awkward spy Maxwell Smart alongside Agent 99, played by Anne Hathaway.
“Melinda and Melinda” (2005) scored 52%.
The 2005 film, “Melinda and Melinda,” tells two stories of a woman named Melinda trying to straighten out her life, according to IMDb. In the film, which scored 52%, Carell plays a character named Walt Wagner.
“Minions” (2015) scored 56%.
“Minions,” the 2015 film following three of the yellow minions from the “Despicable Me” franchise, stars Carell as the younger version of Gru who is a main character in the original “Despicable Me” film.
“Seeking a Friend for the End of the World” (2012) scored 56%.
Carell plays the lead role in “Seeking a Friend for the End of the World,” a man named Dodge who goes looking for his high school sweetheart after his wife left him as an asteroid approaches earth.
In this movie, which scored 56%, Carell played alongside Keira Knightley and his wife, Nancy Carell.
“Despicable Me 3” (2017) scored 59%.
The third film of the “Despicable Me” franchise, released in 2017, tells the story of Gru and his more successful twin brother Dru who wants to team up with Gru for another heist. “Despicable Me 3” scored 59%.
“Tomorrow Night” (1998) scored 60%.
In the 1998 absurdist comedy “Tomorrow Night,” Carell plays a character titled “Mail Room Guy without Glasses.”
“Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day” (2014) scored 61%.
In the 2014 family movie based on a book, “Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day,” Carell plays Alexander’s dad, Ben Cooper.
“Dan in Real Life” (2007) scored 64%.
“Dan in Real Life” tells the story of Dan, a single father who falls in love with a woman he met at a bookstore, though he later finds out she is dating his brother. The movie, in which Carell plays the main character Dan, scored 64% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Vice” (2018) scored 62%.
The 2018 film “Vice,” which was released on Christmas 2018, tells the story of former Vice President to George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and has scored 62% on Rotten Tomatoes. In this film, Carell plays Donald Rumsfeld, the Secretary of Defence from 2001 to 2006.
“Anchorman – The Legend of Ron Burgundy” (2004) scored 66%.
As the dim-witted weatherman Brick Tamland, Carell starred in the 2004 comedic hit “Anchorman,” alongside lead Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate, Paul Rudd and David Koechner.
The film tells the story of Ferrell’s character Ron Burgundy, a San Diego news anchor in the 1970s who has to compete with a new female anchor. The goofy comedy scored 66% on Rotten Tomatoes and today people still commonly quote lines from the film.
“Beautiful Boy” (2018) scored 67%.
The heartwrenching true story depicted in the 2018 movie “Beautiful Boy” has Carell in the lead role as journalist David Sheff whose son, played by Timothee Chalamet, becomes addicted to drugs and follows how their family copes and struggles with the tragedy.
This new film scored 67% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Date Night” (2010) scored 67%.
In “Date Night,” from 2010, Carell plays alongside Tina Fey as a married couple whose routine date night turns into an action adventure of sorts. The comedy scored 67% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Cafe Society” (2016) scored 70%.
Carell plays Phil Stern, the uncle of the film’s main character and a talent agent in the 2016 film “Cafe Society.” The film scored 70% on Rotten Tomatoes, with a 56% audience score.
“Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues” (2013) scored 74%.
The “Anchorman” sequel scored even higher than the original on Rotten Tomatoes, with 74%. Just like in the first one, Carell played Brick Tamland in “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.”
According to Rotten Tomatoes, the sequel wasn’t as quotable, but almost as funny as the first movie.
“Despicable Me 2” (2013) scored 74%.
Again, Carell played Gru for “Despicable Me 2,” which scored 74% on Rotten Tomatoes, but did even better on the audience score with 85%.
“Hope Springs” (2012) scored 75%.
In the 2012 comedy “Hope Springs” – which tells the story of a middle-aged couple who takes on a week’s session of counseling to help their 30-year marriage – Carell plays Doctor Feld, the couple’s specialist. Carell’s leading co-stars were Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones and together they brought the Rotten Tomatoes score to 75%.
“Over the Hedge” (2006) scored 75%.
In the 2006 animated movie about a raccoon repaying a debt of food by going to the suburbs “Over the Hedge,” Carell voiced Hammy the Squirrel.
Other actors who voiced “Over the Hedge” characters alongside Carell included Bruce Willis, Wanda Sykes, William Shatner, and Nick Nolte. The film scored 75% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Crazy, Stupid, Love.” (2011) scored 78%.
As the lead role in “Crazy, Stupid, Love,” Carell played Cal Weaver, whose wife cheats on him and divorces him, leading him to become a wingman to Ryan Gosling’s character.
“Last Flying Flag” (2017) scored 78%.
In the serious-toned Amazon Prime movie “Last Flag Flying,” Carell plays the main character again, Vietnam veteran Larry Shepherd, whose son was killed in Iraq. Though this is one of his more serious films and not a comedy, “Last Flag Flying” scored well on Rotten Tomatoes with 78%.
“Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears a Who!” (2008) scored 79%.
Along with comedy greats such as Jim Carrey, Carol Burnett, Will Arnett, and Seth Rogen, Carell played the mayor of Whoville in the 2008 animated movie “Horton Hears a Who!” which scored 79% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“Despicable Me” (2010) scored 81%.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the original “Despicable Me” scored higher than any of its sequels or prequels with 81%. As in the other films in the franchise, Carell voiced criminal mastermind Gru, whose life is changed when he adopts three orphaned girls.
“The Way Way Back” (2013) scored 84%.
The comedy-drama from 2013,“The Way Way Back,” tells the story of a teenager who spends the summer with his mum’s boyfriends, Trent, played by Carell. The film scored incredibly highly on Rotten Tomatoes with 84%.
“Battle of the Sexes” (2017) scored 85%.
In the role of tennis player Bobby Riggs, Carell acted alongside Emma Stone for the 2017 movie “Battle of the Sexes,” which tells the true story of a 1973 tennis match between Billie Jean King and Riggs, and scored 85% on Rotten Tomatoes.
“The 40-Year-Old Virgin” (2005) scored 85%.
Before the fame he got for “The Office,” Carell might have been best known for his role as the Andy Stitzer, the lead in “The 40-Year-Old Virgin.” Carell also co-wrote the comedy – which scored 85% on Rotten Tomatoes – with director Judd Apatow.
“Foxcatcher” (2014) scored 87%.
In the 2014 film “Foxcatcher,” which is based on true events, Carell plays yet another serious role. The film tells the story of two US Olympic wrestling champions and their attempt to train for the 1988 Olympics in Korea, led by millionaire John du Pont, played by Carell. The serious sports drama scored 87%, one of Carell’s highest-scoring films.
“The Big Short” (2013) scored 88%.
Carell stars as Mark Baum in the telling of the collapse of the housing bubble of 2005 in the US.“The Big Short” scored 88% on Rotten Tomatoes. His character is Steve Eisman, a real person who profited off of the collapse.
“Knocked Up” (2007) scored 90%.
“Knocked Up,” a 2007 comedy about a one night stand that turns into a pregnancy, was a pretty big hit scoring 90% on Rotten Tomatoes. Though Carell isn’t credited in the film, he does play himself in a brief cameo, according to IMDb.
“Little Miss Sunshine” (2006) scored 91%.
In 2006, Carell starred in the comedy-drama “Little Miss Sunshine” about a family travelling across the US to get their daughter into a beauty pageant final. The film, in which Carell played Frank Ginsberg, scored 91% on Rotten Tomatoes, Carell’s second-highest scoring film.
“Too Funny to Fail” (2017) scored 100%.
Carell’s highest-scoring film,“Too Funny to Fail,” is a documentary about the history of the failed “Dana Carvey Show,” which aired on NBC. Because it is a documentary, Carell stars as himself in the comedic feature-length documentary.
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