He was arguably the greatest comedian the world has ever seen, but Robin Williams was also an amazing dramatic actor. While his family, friends and fans mourn his untimely death, I thought it best to celebrate his life as an actor. He brought so much joy to the world, and his performances in film and television will live on.
Here is my top 15 Robin Williams performances...
15) The Butler (2013)
Cecil Gaines serves under eight US presidents during the civil rights movement, Vietnam War and other major events. Williams basically had a cameo as Dwight D. Eisenhower, but he captured the US president well.
14) Flubber (1997)
A quirky professor discovers a rubbery, bouncy, green substance. This film is wild and funny, and great entertainment for children.
13) The Birdcage (1996)
A gay cabaret owner and his drag queen partner pretend to be straight so that their son can introduce them to his fiancée's right-wing parents. This film is so much fun.
12) Happy Feet and Happy Feet II (2006 and 2011)
Emperor penguins usually find their soul mates through song, but when a penguin is born who cannot sing, he uses tap dance to try to impress his fellow penguins. Williams is the master of comedic voices and his contribution to these two films was a welcome addition.
11) Patch Adams (1998)
A medical student treats patients illegally using humor. This role certainly suited Williams. Heartfelt, funny and sweet.
10) Good Morning, Vietnam (1987)
An irreverent DJ is assigned to the US Armed Services radio station in Vietnam and surprises everyone with his unique style. This is a favourite film for many fans. It had an important message and Williams improvised a lot of the lines.
9) Insomnia (2002)
Two homicide detectives are dispatched to a town to investigate the methodical murder of a local teenager. This was a dark film that showed Williams was a great dramatic actor.
8) Fern Gully: The Last Rainforest (1992)
The inhabitants of a rainforest fight to save their home, which is threatened by logging and a pollution. I studied this film at school and it still has a powerful message today. Williams again lends his voice to an interesting character.
7) Hook (1991)
An adult Peter Pan must return to Neverland when Captain Hook kidnaps his children. This was a childhood favourite for me and many others. It is hard to imagine anyone else playing this role. Williams obviously had a lot of fun with the Peter Pan character.
6) One hour Photo (2002)
An employee at a one-hour photo lab becomes obsessed with a family. A man I grew up adoring for all the laughter, suddenly became sinister and creepy in this film. It was a powerful performance and still freaks me out.
5) Jumanji (1995)
When two children start playing a magical board game, they release a man trapped inside for decades and unleash many dangers that can only be stopped by finishing the game. This is just an awesome film for the whole family to enjoy, but Williams is a fantastic lead. There is so much happening that there are fewer opportunities for Williams to be his usual outrageous self, but he still finds some moments to shine.
4) Dead Poets Society (1989)
An unorthodox English teacher inspires his students to love poetry and seize the day. O' Captain! My Captain! This character is a hero, and Williams is magnificent in the role. Who doesn't want a teacher like John Keating?
3) Good Will Hunting (1997)
A gifted mathematician seeks help from a psychologist to find direction in his life. Williams won his only Oscar for this role, and it was certainly well deserved. If you had forgotten he was an impressive dramatic actor, this film was surely a reminder of his depth.
2) Aladdin (1992)
Aladdin is a street urchin who finds a magic lamp with a genie inside. He asks Genie to make him a prince so he can woo Princess Jasmine. I have seen Aladdin countless times and know every line. Even though I know what Genie is going to say next, I still laugh at many of the jokes every time, which is a testament to how funny Williams truly was. Aladdin remains my favourite Disney film and one of the main reasons for this is Williams' performance.
1) Mrs Doubtfire (1993)
During a bitter divorce, an actor disguises himself as a female housekeeper to spend time with his children. I had a great childhood and my parents are still together, and yet, this film had an emotional impact on me. Not only does Williams immerse himself in the hilarious role, but his speech at the end of the film about family still makes me cry every time.
RIP Robin Williams and thank you for all the wonderful memories.
What is your favourite Robin Williams film/performance?