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Every Pierce Brosnan Movie Ranked Worst To Best

For over four decades, Pierce Brosnan has been lighting up the screen in roles big and small. Known for his roguish charm, his keen intellect, and his handsome visage, he has a talent for appearing in films that both trade on and play against these qualities. As with every actor who's starred as the famous super spy, he's perhaps most frequently associated with his seven-year run as James Bond, and though his turn in the long-running franchise is certainly beloved, he has a filmography far more impressive than any single character.

Since his film debut in 1980, Brosnan has starred in a wide range of genres. From murder mysteries to romantic comedies, from action thrillers to meditative dramas, there seems to be no limit to what this Irish thespian is capable of. So we've taken the liberty of looking through his entire resume in order to rank his projects from worst to best. We've omitted his TV work (such as "Remington Steele" and "The Son"), as well as some of the more obscure entries that we couldn't find critical citations for. Even still, we're left with a wildly impressive and varied compilation of films that serves to highlight just how much Brosnan has brought to the medium.

60. Urge

The lowest entry on our list is this drug-fueled morality tale from 2016, although what the actual moral is may be harder to discern. Brosnan plays an eccentric nightclub owner who purveys a mysterious inhalant known as the "urge," with the gimmick being that it's dangerous for users to take it more than once. Once the drug is unleashed upon a group of privileged young partiers (played by Justin Chatwin, Danny Masterson, and Ashley Greene among others), all hell breaks loose, although it's not the kind of chaos that's especially fun to witness.

As the Los Angeles Times puts it, "The lack of any likable characters ultimately undoes 'Urge.' [The filmmakers] have made a classic party-throwers mistake: overrating the entertainment value in watching other people get high." Although to Brosnan's credit, the review does note that he "seems to be the only one in the cast having any fun."

59. Entangled

"Entangled" is an earlier thriller of sorts that follows a cat-and-mouse game played between two literary rivals. How early are we talking? Early enough that Judd Nelson ("The Breakfast Club") was cast in the lead role of David, a jealous failed novelist who's convinced that his girlfriend (Laurence Treil) is cheating on him, though he gradually uncovers there's a greater mystery that's both deeper and shallower than his otherwise simple explanation.

As for Brosnan? He plays Nelson's rival, Garavan, although the actual nature of his role is a little inexplicable. David Nusair noted in his write-up for Reel Film Reviews that he's "still not entirely sure what [Brosnan's] deal is. He would pop up every now and then, do something sinister, and recede into the night." Not exactly the best use of the actor's talents.

58. Robinson Crusoe

This 1997 adaptation of Daniel Defoe's novel of the same name may very well have been buried in the wake of Brosnan's success in the James Bond franchise, as despite featuring a name actor in a new version of a famous novel, it never received a proper theatrical release in the United States or the United Kingdom. As such, it's one of the actor's more difficult films to come by.

That may be for the best, however, as Radio Times suggests that "Pierce Brosnan makes an unconvincing job of playing Daniel Defoe's famous castaway in this dismally dumbed-down screen bowdlerization." The film also features a young Damian Lewis as the former friend that Brosnan's titular Crusoe kills in a duel, as well as Ian Hart playing a fictionalized version of Defoe himself, though fortunately all actors involved would go on to find roles more befitting of their talents.

57. I Don't Know How She Does It

Off the back of her runaway success with "Sex and the City," Sarah Jessica Parker certainly enjoyed a moment in time where she headlined a number of big screen projects in the hopes that she would earn some residual goodwill from her small-screen adventures. This adaptation of Allison Pearson's novel of the same name, however, was a big swing and a miss. Parker plays an investment advisor who struggles to balance her ambitious work life with her family troubles involving two small children and a loving husband (Greg Kinnear).

Thrown into the mix is Brosnan as a successful colleague who also serves as a form of temptation. The review for The Wrap admits, "None of the major performers embarrass themselves here, but neither does anyone especially shine." The major issue with the film is that, in the wake of the Great Recession, the difficulties of rich, successful people living in beautiful homes just seems unengaging at best and tone-deaf at worst. As stated in the review, "One can't help feeling like you've already seen all this too many times and that a bunch of talented, smart folks are just going through the motions."

56. Some Kind of Beautiful

Casting Brosnan as a womanizing scoundrel with charm to spare might sound like a sure thing on paper. But in practice, his role as Richard Haig in "Some Kind of Beautiful" comes across as icky rather than endearing. A Cambridge professor with a taste for alcohol and attractive women, the film starts with the reveal that Haig is sleeping with one of his students (Jessica Alba), who in turn reveals that she's pregnant. Although Haig tries to do the right thing by marrying her and being a supportive father, his good intentions are cut short by her leaving him for a younger man.

In comes Salma Hayek as Alba's older sister, a woman who — despite her initial distaste for Richard's overly flirtatious ways — inexplicably finds herself falling in love with him. Regardless of the game cast doing what they can with the material, the execution misses the mark by a mile, and as Variety puts it, the film is "some kind of hideous, a perfect storm of romantic-comedy awfulness that seems to set the ailing genre back decades with the sheer force of its ineptitude."

55. Grey Owl

With this 1999 film, director Richard Attenborough tries to tell the true story surrounding an English man who forsakes his heritage to live in Canada as a Native American. Even though it's very misguided, the film admittedly does have a compelling subject matter. Archibald "Grey Owl" Belaney may have been an imposter, but he was also one of the first environmental activists and wrote several books on the subject in order to convey his newfound beliefs. In Attenborough's version of events, however, the man's complexities are sanded off to the point where he's rendered inert and uninteresting.

None of this does Brosnan any favors in the title role, as The Spectator reports that "he never allows a smile to crack his expressionless face, which ... is meant to suggest the dark secret that lurks within but instead just results in a wooden performance." Indeed, the film was so underwhelming to its own U.S. distributor that it became one of the most expensive movies at the time to wind up going straight-to-video.

54. Survivor

There seems to be a trend with Brosnan appearing in a large number of formulaic, VOD-friendly action films both before and after his Bond tenure, and this is one that can be added to the pile. Milla Jovovich stars as a security expert who inadvertently stumbles upon a potential gas-based terrorist threat. This puts her in the crosshairs of the Watchmaker (Brosnan), an assassin who proceeds to pursue her through what's left of the 96-minute runtime.

Though the film is standard issue to a fault, it at least benefits from the direction of James McTeigue ("V for Vendetta") and a supporting cast that includes Angela Bassett, James D'Arcy, Dylan McDermott, and the late Robert Forster. The Hollywood Reporter observes that though it's "stuffed with endless chase scenes which never seem to generate any actual suspense, the film at least benefits from the presence of its charismatic leads," saying of Brosnan in particular that he "effortlessly displays cool menace." And that's as much as you can hope for in a product of this caliber.

53. The King's Daughter

A long-delayed fantasy epic that was originally set for release in 2015 before being left on the shelf for seven years, "The King's Daughter" is a stylish mess. Brosnan plays Louis XIV, a decadent monarch who alternates between confessing his sins to a spiritual advisor (William Hurt in one of his final roles), arranging a marriage for his newly uncovered daughter (Kaya Scodelario), and attempting a ritual sacrifice of a mermaid (Fan Bingbing) that will somehow grant him eternal life.

If that synopsis sounds like it has a lot going on, the film itself is even more so, with a flailing tone and unconvincing special effects dampening its already muddled impact, resulting in one of the worst films of 2022. Richard Roeper confirms as much in his review for the Chicago Sun-Times, stating, "Brosnan and Hurt have some fun together as two powerful and world-weary cynics who aren't yet beyond redemption but are skirting close to the edge –- but nothing that transpires in the final, admittedly well-filmed series of events is particularly surprising or thrilling."

52. I.T.

In the years since his stint as 007, Brosnan has more than once tried his hand at similar action vehicles, though in many instances ... it has not gone well. For example, the trashy techno-thriller "I.T." is one of the worst, and though it allows its star to look good in a suit and driving expensive cars, there's little else to redeem it. The plot concerns Brosnan as a wealthy industrialist who finds himself at odds with an unbalanced employee (James Frecheville), who uses his employer's sophisticated smart-house against him.

The generic setup of "crazy guy targets good man and his family" would seem boilerplate enough, but it's given an additional creep factor via a subplot about Frecheville's obsession with Brosnan's underage daughter (Stefanie Scott), which the film is all too happy to lean into. As Village Voice puts it, "Whatever cautionary point 'I.T.' may be trying to make about privacy gets lost in the formulaic ugliness, and not even the constant stream of facepalm moments make it entertaining or watchable."

51. The Misfits

This recent heist film shows that even now, Pierce Brosnan isn't above the occasional paycheck. Yes, "The Misfits" is basically what you'd expect from a film of this caliber, but even though the movie never quite keeps up with him, the star brings an air of professionalism to his role as a thief who partners with the titular band of Robin Hood-esque delinquents (played by Nick Cannon, Jamie Chung, Mike D. Angelo, and Rami Jabar) in order to rob a prison baron (Tim Roth) of a fortune in gold bricks.

Despite director Renny Harlin's pedigree of enjoyably dumb thrillers like "Deep Blue Sea" and "Cliffhanger," the results here are frequently derivative. Worse than that is the juvenile humor and unfortunate bigotry that clouds the whole project, which IndieWire highlights by observing that "its big heist depends on Nick Cannon's casually racist character disguising himself as an Arabic sheik (arguably the grossest part of a sequence that also includes hundreds of men suffering from explosive diarrhea at the same time)."

50. Murder 101

Yet another project made for TV (this one for the USA Network), this mystery was shot under the name "Murder Perfect" and stars Brosnan as the author of a number of true-crime novels. He's also a professor who teaches classes on how to write murder mysteries, a skillset that comes in handy when he's framed for the death of one of his students. As the tension rises, he finds himself turning to his soon-to-be ex-wife (Dey Young) for help with unraveling what really transpired.

It's uncomplicated stuff, but as these things go, it delivers exactly what you'd expect, and director Bill Condon (who would go on to helm everything from "Kinsey" to "Dreamgirls") delivers a certain flair for the material that makes it that much more watchable. It helps to have a compelling star front and center. As Daily Grindhouse puts it, Brosnan "nails exactly what you want in a TV-movie lead –- he's handsome, likeable without being smarmy, and convincingly imperiled without delving into histrionics."

49. Remember Me

Considering how much of an electric presence Brosnan can bring to the right role, it's a little surprising how often he gets cast as boring dads. But that's exactly what happens in this low-grade romance starring Robert Pattinson (in the throes of his "Twilight" era) as Brosnan's rebellious son with major daddy issues, who starts a half-serious courtship with a fellow student (Emilie de Ravin) that ultimately turns very serious.

The film is pretty by-the-numbers as a rom-com about 20-somethings learning to find themselves, and Pattinson had yet to mature into the brilliantly compelling actor we now know he would become, but there's a distinct reason this film is remembered today. There's a plot twist in the final minutes of the movie that takes advantage of a national tragedy in a way that's profoundly tasteless. As noted by Rolling Stone, "It's all weepy drool until the twist ending, which turns it shockingly offensive."

48. Salvation Boulevard

Religion can be a prickly subject matter at the best of times — doubly so when one attempts to skewer it through satire. So, the odds were already stacked against this unfortunately humorless comedy, which stars Brosnan as a pompous yet popular local pastor who tries to pin the blame for an accidental shooting on one of his followers (Greg Kinnear). This is the second pairing of Kinnear and Brosnan on this list, and thankfully, there's one later on that utilizes the duo to far greater effect.

As for this particular venture, the lack of cleverness and abundance of stereotypes just make it feel mean-spirited more than anything. Unfortunately, NPR had this to say about the lead performance: "For his part, Brosnan seems so disinterested that he can't even decide his character's place of origin, his accent meandering aimlessly from his native Ireland to Australia, with brief stops in the American South."

47. Taffin

This 1988 action drama is one of Brosnan's earliest films, and there's definitely a certain throwback quality to watching it now. Based on a series of novels about the title character by Lyndon Mallet, it features the actor as a tough-as-nails debt collector who's forced into action by his community when a group of wealthy industrialists plan to build a chemical plant on top of the local sports arena.

Though the film is likely best known for a viral clip featuring Brosnan's unique delivery of the line "maybe you shouldn't be living here," there is a charmingly basic enjoyment to be had from this unassuming setup. Ed Travis says as much in his review for Cinapse, writing, "It's an entirely familiar kind of lone hero action movie that goes down easy, feels entirely satisfying, and revels in its few eccentricities."

46. Laws of Attraction

One of the toughest challenges in modern filmmaking is telling a story that hasn't already been told before. To that end, one of the greatest mistakes can be attempting to retell a story that's already been told much better. This is exactly the pitfall the saccharine romantic comedy "Laws of Attraction" falls into, casting Brosnan and Julianne Moore as married divorce lawyers on opposite sides of the same case.

If the plot sounds familiar, it's because Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn already played this scenario to far greater effect in "Adam's Rib." Sadly, Moore and Brosnan both end up feeling miscast and floundering without a decent screenplay to save them. The Austin Chronicle notes that "the two legal eagles in 'Laws of Attraction' are not helped by a script that renders the things unrealistically, both in terms of the characters' development and the legal system."

45. The Love Punch

Maybe it's the residual effects of his time as the womanizing 007 or maybe it's just his debonair good looks, but Brosnan has never been able to resist a good love story. Unfortunately, he's often also unable to resist a bad one, which is what we get here. He's paired with Emma Thompson as a divorced couple who team up for an overelaborate plot to recover his stolen pension, enlisting the help of two adventurous friends (Timothy Spall and Celia Imrie) in the process.

The details and execution of the caper leave much to be desired, but what's most frustrating is that the interplay between the two leads hints at a project that would have been far more entertaining. As relayed by the New York Daily News, "We see the potential for a fun rom-com every time Thompson and Brosnan spar. Though they don't share any real chemistry, they do connect with the appealing confidence of two pros." Maybe someday they'll reteam for a project more befitting of their talents.

44. The Deceivers

Any time one goes back to watch a film from a different era, they must often reconcile with a certain lack of political correctness. Depictions of non-white races and other minorities often miss the mark by quite a long stretch and can appear that much more glaring under the moderately enlightened scrutiny of a modern audience. So, when one goes to watch a film like 1988's "The Deceivers," they might be quickly struck by the rather jarring central hook of the plot, which involves Pierce Brosnan spending much of the film in brownface.

As far as specifics, he's playing a Victorian military officer residing in India who witnesses the violent activities of a local gang and endeavors to disguise himself and infiltrate their ranks. It's a handsomely mounted production (produced by Ismail Merchant of Merchant/Ivory fame), but the core conceit may strain credibility for most. It certainly did for Battleship Pretension, which reported, "It takes a herculean suspension of disbelief to swallow everyone just accepting that a guy who looks like Brosnan is Indian because he's got brown shoe polish on his face."

43. Nomads

Though he's worked in a wide variety of genres, one that Brosnan hasn't spent too much time with is horror. Perhaps he was scared off by his early experience in this 1986 film from director John McTiernan (of "Die Hard" and "Predator" fame). The convoluted plot has the actor playing a French anthropologist who moves with his wife to Los Angeles and finds himself under attack by what appears to be a roaming street gang but is actually a group of ancient nomadic spirits spreading evil in human form.

That all seems simple enough, but the presentation of the film is nonlinear and jumbled, dragging in Lesley-Anne Down as a doctor who attempts to make sense of the whole thing. Sense appears to be beside the point, as the only thing more illogical than the story are the characters in it. Roger Ebert describes it as "one of those stories where the characters have only themselves to blame, for going out into dark knights and looking for trouble with the [spirits] and not getting on the next plane back to France."

42. Cinderella

The landscape of cinema has no shortage of Cinderella adaptations. Between the classic Disney animated version and Kenneth Branagh's 2015 reimagining, the tale of a poor girl who finds her prince via magic and glass slippers has been told a lot. Still, Amazon seemed confident that they could produce a version for the modern age, which resulted in 2021's musical iteration that featured a combination of original and existing songs.

The end product, however, felt like a hodgepodge of ideas with nothing tying them together. Camila Cabello does what she can with the title role, and she's surrounded by a variety of other performers doing fine to questionable work, including Idina Menzel, Billy Porter, and James Corden (with Brosnan and Minnie Driver wasted as the king and queen). Confused messaging and poor execution result in a film that, as Polygon puts it, "is a cringe-worthy eyesore that's deadly dull and intellectually shallow."

41. A Christmas Star

Pierce Brosnan's presence in this Irish Christmas film is admittedly quite limited. He plays the boss of a band of developers who plan to demolish the village pottery factory. He's not the only Irish native to make an appearance. Liam Neeson's voice shows up to add some flavor to an otherwise bland story of a magical little girl (Erin Galway-Kendrick) with magical powers who sets out to save the day from the crooked forces of capitalism.

Though the uniquely Irish setting does make this family-friendly flick stand out a little from the hundreds of similarly themed Hallmark films out there, it's not quite enough to elevate things beyond its target demographic. Time Out reports that it "struggles with the basics of credibility, insulting us with unspeakably bad dialogue and delivering clunky performances by the shovelful."

40. Love Affair

Younger audiences may only know him as the guy who accidentally read the wrong name at the Oscars, but there was a time when Warren Beatty was one of the most prolific men in Hollywood. In addition to starring in hit films like "Bonnie and Clyde," he frequently wrote and/or directed projects as varied as "Reds" and "Dick Tracy." Towards the tail end of this intensely creative period, he co-wrote and starred "Love Affair," a remake of the 1939 classic of the same name.

The story revolves around Beatty and Annette Bening (a real-life couple at the time) as a pair of star-crossed lovers who meet during a plane crash and realize that they're perfect for one another, despite both being engaged to other people (Kate Capshaw and Pierce Brosnan, respectively). What follows is sweet enough and tastefully made but devoid of personality. Newsweek attests that the film "takes such pains to dodge vulgarity it forgets to put anything in its place."

39. The Only Living Boy in New York

Ever since Woody Allen made a name for himself with a series of heartfelt cinematic love letters to New York City, many a filmmaker has tried and failed to capture that same sense of romantic and existential ennui. One such filmmaker is Marc Webb — best known for "(500) Days of Summer" and the Andrew Garfield "Spider-Man" series — whose own attempt at this subgenre finds Callum Turner playing a wannabe writer who discovers that his father (Brosnan) is having an affair with a younger woman (Kate Beckinsale).

Though his initial goal is to break them up, the young man finds himself falling for the woman, which serves to further complicate things. Yet despite a game cast (which also includes Jeff Bridges as a wise neighbor), the film can't find anything new to say about either relationships or the city that forms its setting. The Globe and Mail laments that "like love itself, the movie wants so much to be magical. But like the Paul Simon song it pulls its title from, you've heard it too many times before and the ardor just isn't there."

38. Death Train

Despite being an underseen TV-movie, there's no shortage of talent on display in this old-school actioner. In addition to a young Brosnan in the lead, the supporting cast includes such heavy hitters as Patrick Stewart, Christopher Lee, and Ted Levine, all wrapped up in a straightforward scenario about a stolen nuclear weapon being held by terrorists on a German train, who hope to use it to force a Russian invasion of Iraq.

While it hardly reinvents the wheel, this is a film that can still be enjoyed by anyone looking for undemanding thrills. One of the few reviews available, via Film-authority.com, attests as much by stating that "it just about manages to entertain, mainly by casting a few well-kent faces, most of which went on to bigger things and also by dint of some decent sub-Bond second unit action." Though hardly a jewel in Brosnan's filmography, it's far from the worst thing he's been a part of.

37. Dante's Peak

The disaster movie is a well-worn genre at this point, and most viewers know what to expect going in. Something either natural or unnatural is coming to wreak destruction upon innocent civilians, and an ensemble of stock characters will do their best to survive. "Dante's Peak" does not disappoint these modest expectations, offering up Brosnan as a typically handsome scientist who's come to warn a quiet little town of a volcano on the verge of eruption.

When it comes to the chaos that ensues, the film delivers in spades. But where it falls short is in the human department, as the characters played by Brosnan and Linda Hamilton feel unconvincing and one-dimensional. Describing Brosnan's performance, the Associated Press says that he "tries to be rough and tough ... but when he sits in the local bar completely peeved that neither he nor his volcano are being taken seriously, tossing nuts into his mouth with such force you fear he'll hurt himself, you can only feel sorry for the guy."

36. No Escape

If casting Pierce Brosnan as an action star is a bit of a no-brainer, casting Owen Wilson in that role certainly constitutes thinking outside the box. Such was the innovation in this 2015 thriller that features Wilson and Lake Bell as a couple moving their family to Southeast Asia for a new job and a new life. Brosnan plays a mysterious resident at the hotel they're staying in, one who befriends them as they struggle to adapt to their new home.

The struggle becomes significantly more intense when the family realizes that they've arrived in the middle of a full-scale revolution, and they find themselves teaming up with Brosnan's character in a desperate attempt to survive. The action here is filmed confidently and frenetically, but the story and characters suffer by comparison, and a strangely out-of-date attitude against the even shallower Asian characters brings the film down even more. Overall, as the Independent attests, it's a film with "one or two moments of brilliance interspersed with many very silly ones."

35. The November Man

Reuniting with Roger Donaldson, who directed him in "Dante's Peak," Brosnan submits his own entry into the "older actor gets to be a stone-cold killing machine" subgenre popularized by Liam Neeson and Denzel Washington, among others. In this adaptation of Bill Granger's best-selling series, Brosnan plays the titular November Man, Peter Devereaux, a retired CIA agent who's pulled into a web of murder and intrigue after a botched attempt to rescue his ex-wife.

If you've seen one of these kinds of movies, you've seen them all. Donaldson does what he can to give the material some verve, and the action is equal parts unrelenting and perfunctory. What really gives the film any staying power (as with most of its ilk) is the charismatic presence of the lead actor. In his review, Richard Crouse concedes that "the movie is a somewhat generic thriller buoyed by Brosnan's badass Bondness."

34. Shattered

Not every film needs to change the world, and the creative team behind "Shattered" almost certainly didn't expect their film to make any major waves. Despite these modest ambitions, however, the result is a story that knows exactly what it wants to be and more or less succeeds. Brosnan here takes on a more villainous persona as a man who's kidnapped the daughter of a married couple (Gerard Butler and Maria Bello), and forces them to complete a number of elaborate challenges if they hope to rescue her.

A straightforward thriller like this can live or die on the strength of its cast, and fortunately, this is an instance where everyone on-screen came to play. Though Butler and Bello are on fine form, it's their deranged opponent who really gives a spark to the proceedings. As Reel Film Reviews notes, the film is "a slick effort that works best during its more overtly thrillerish sequences –- with Brosnan's electrifying performance certainly playing a key role in the movie's success."

33. The Lawnmower Man

Stephen King adaptations are a dime a dozen, and anyone who's witnessed their fair share know that some are definitely better than others. This loose interpretation of a King short story features Brosnan as an eccentric scientist who uses the mentally challenged man that mows his lawn (Jeff Fahey) as a guinea pig for his radical intelligence enhancement experiments. Though at first the treatment of drugs and VR seem to make an improvement, they soon backfire when Fahey's newfound intelligence turns malicious.

The big selling point of the film at the time were its state-of-the-art VR sequences, which utilized CGI that unfortunately looks hilariously dated now. Still, it was enough to earn the film a begrudging pass upon its initial release, and if you're looking for good cheesy fun, you can't wrong here. The Washington Post describes it as "the first film to capitalize on interest in 'virtual reality' technology." Come for Brosnan, stay for the 1992 CGI that's wrong in all the right ways. 

32. After the Sunset

The second collaboration between Brosnan and Salma Hayek on this list involves the duo as partners in crime, with the former a renowned diamond thief. Woody Harrelson plays an FBI agent hot on his trail who follows him to a remote tropical island. Despite Brosnan's claims that he's retired, Harrelson is convinced that he's really there to steal a priceless diamond from a nearby cruise ship.

What ensues are various low-stakes hijinks, pleasant to watch but not especially taxing (either mentally or emotionally). Time Out put it best when they said, "There's glamour, giggles and a couple of good heist scenes, but generally this is clumsily signposted and slow." That said, the actors do what they can to spruce up the material, with the same review noting that "the interplay between Harrelson and Brosnan offers some farcical pleasure."

31. Spinning Man

Though Brosnan's credentials as a leading man are beyond question, sometimes he excels just as much in a supporting or antagonistic role. For example, in the mystery thriller "Spinning Man," he plays a detective on the trail of a professor (Guy Pearce) who's found himself the primary suspect after one of his students is found dead. As it turns out, the professor's alibi may not be very airtight, and his wife (Minnie Driver) suspects that he may in fact have been sleeping with the student.

Playing the straight man challenging Guy Pearce's increasingly tangled web of mistruths and uncertainty, Brosnan does an effective job interrogating the kind of role he himself would have played just a few years earlier. The film does get a bit bogged down in formula and the complexities of its plot, but the Los Angeles Times vouches that "of the many interchangeable, name-led thrillers and action pictures concurrently premiering these days in theaters and on VOD, this one's definitely a cut above."

30. Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief

It's hard to blame the rest of Hollywood for reacting to the runaway success of the "Harry Potter" franchise by doubling down on creating their own lucrative sagas about magical adolescents. But this is how you get a lot of forgettable movies like "Eragon" and "The Golden Compass," with studios taking any vaguely popular book series in the same genre and attempting to give it the same treatment. But who better to make an attempt that stands out from the crowd than Chris Columbus, the director of the first two "Potter" films?

As such, you get the tale of Percy Jackson (Logan Lerman) a tween who discovers that he's actually the son of Poseidon, and he gets thrown into an epic fantasy adventure when Zeus (Sean Bean) accuses him of stealing his lightning bolt. He runs into a number of colorful characters pulled from Greek mythology along the way, including Pierce Brosnan as a centaur. Speaking to his performance, Roger Ebert had this to say: "Give Brosnan a lot of credit for wearing the back half of a horse as if he'd been doing it for years."

29. False Positive

One of Brosnan's signature attributes is a sort of rakish charm, which is often used to provide comfort or attract his female co-stars, but it can occasionally be weaponized for more sinister ends. Enter his role as Dr. Hindle in the pseudo-horror thriller "False Positive," which focuses on a couple (Ilana Glazer and Justin Theroux) who've tried and failed to get pregnant. They turn to the good doctor, an old friend of Theroux's, who boasts an immaculate track record for helping women to conceive.

Though Glazer does indeed get pregnant, she begins to suspect that her husband and doctor have ulterior motives and that there may be some unnatural plot surrounding the eventual birth. The San Francisco Chronicle's review for the film indicates that "though not perfect –- logic is stillborn at some point in the second half -– it has two appealing elements: Ilana Glazer, the film's co-writer and star, and Pierce Brosnan, who is perfecting a suave sort of sliminess as of late."

28. Quest for Camelot

For decades, Disney has held the crown when it comes to animation targeted at children, though that doesn't prevent the occasional would-be usurpers from nipping at their heels. Roughly halfway through his Bond tenure, Pierce Brosnan lent his voice to one such film for Warner Bros, playing none other than King Arthur himself in a fantasy epic set in and around Camelot. Though he provides an expected gravitas to the legendary character, he's merely a supporting player in this particular story.

The bulk of the film concerns Kayley (Jessalyn Gilsig), the daughter of a slain knight, who teams up with a blind traveler (Cary Elwes) and a two-headed dragon (Eric Idle and Don Rickles) to retrieve Excalibur and return it to the king before an invading army deposes him. As outlined by Variety, the film "is a pleasant diversion that should delight pre-teens and amuse their parents." And while the animation doesn't hold up to the Disney Renaissance classics of the era, it's definitely got some magic to it. 

27. Married Life

Adapted from John Bingham's 1955 novel "Five Roundabouts to Heaven," this crime drama stars Chris Cooper as a married man who falls in love with an enchanting young widow (Rachel McAdams). Convincing himself that divorce would be too hard on his wife (Patricia Clarkson), he decides that killing her would be the more humane option. Complicating the matter further is his silver-tongued best friend (Brosnan), who also has eyes for his prospective new bride.

This is the kind of film where nasty behavior is played up for entertainment value, where people who think they're doing the right thing end up making horrible decisions that spiral out into any number of unforeseen directions. That's all part of the fun, as the Austin Chronicle states that there's a sense of "wonderful, amoral resignation and gleeful responsibility-dodging that makes 'Married Life' so deliciously different from other modern crime stories."

26. The Mirror Has Two Faces

Barbra Streisand is an artist who's devoted many projects to the strange and uncomfortable ways that men and women can love each other. One of her lesser-known directorial efforts is this '90s throwback to the screwball romantic comedy. She plays a literature professor who's dejected by her romantic prospects, especially after her sister (Mimi Rogers) is married to the dashing young Brosnan (who else).

She winds up in an unusual intellectual marriage with fellow professor Jeff Bridges, whose previous entanglements have made him wary of intimacy. Even though he postulates that their attraction should only be mental, she soon begins to crave the physical and makes herself over in order to break down his barriers. Though the academic scenes beggar belief, Roger Ebert still maintains that "this is a moving and challenging movie, fascinated by the murky depths that separate what people want from what they say they want and what they think they should want."

25. Die Another Day

It was only a matter of time before we hit the films that Brosnan is really famous for. His last stint as James Bond received a mixed critical reception, and the over-the-top nature of its spectacle ultimately triggered a recast (and a full-on reboot), thus ushering in the Daniel Craig era. Yet in recent years, the film has earned something of a reevaluation, and even though its bigger moments are still laughable, its slowly earned its place as a Bond film worth respecting.

Much of that is due to Brosnan's naturalism in the role. As Slate puts it, "He injects a tiny bit of drama into the role –- a tension between the classic persona, with its easy sense of entitlement, and an anxious awareness that it's no longer as easy as all that." For all the invisible cars, melting ice palaces, and ridiculous space lasers, the core of these films always comes back to the character, and Brosnan embodied that through to his final moments.

24. The Greatest

Pierce Brosnan may be best known for doing loud, explosive action movies, but every now and then, a film like "The Greatest" comes along to show just how capable he is when it comes to quieter, more reserved material. He and Susan Sarandon play a pair of grieving parents whose teenage son has died in a car accident. She is weeping openly, he is internalizing everything. Into the mix comes Carey Mulligan as their son's girlfriend, who reveals that she's pregnant with their grandchild.

The emotions come thick and fast in a story like this, and it doesn't completely stand apart from similar films that have come before. But the highlight is most certainly the trio of stars at the center, and the Chicago Reader observes that "the real surprise is Brosnan's silent, agonized performance." The paper particularly praises a scene where the actor is coming home from his boy's funeral, "flanked by his wife and surviving son but abjectly alone." While he's famous for bombastic action movies, Brosnan proves here that he's also capable of silent, devastating performances.

23. Seraphim Falls

Despite being known for a certain clean-cut handsomeness, Brosnan has never been afraid to rough it up and get dirty for a role. A great example is in this revenge Western taking place shortly after the Civil War, which features the actor as a trapper being aggressively pursued by Liam Neeson for reasons that we're not initially privy to. Whatever it is, it must be powerful stuff because the hunt is clearly fueled by rage on Neeson's part.

The chase that ensues plays out in a sparse, minimalist fashion, bringing to mind the stories of Cormac McCarthy (especially the pursuit from "No Country For Old Men"). Set against the majesty of the American frontier, the film is visually stunning, even if the setup promises a bit more action than is ultimately delivered. Still, a little bit can go a long way, as The Guardian notes that "the cunning, resourceful, ruthlessly violent Brosnan gives his best performance for a long time."

22. Mamma Mia!

For all of Brosnan's many talents, singing may not have been one that fans would have expected from the former super spy. As it turns out, that may have been a reasonable thing to not expect, as his musical contributions aren't exactly the high point of this Broadway adaptation, which itself is adapted from the infectiously catchy songs of ABBA. The plot, such as it is, revolves around Sophie (Amanda Seyfried), a young woman living on a Greek island who wants to meet her father before she gets married.

Because her free spirit mother (Meryl Streep) won't reveal who he is, Sophie conspires to invite three former flames who could conceivably fit the bill (Colin Firth, Stellan Skarsgard, and Brosnan). This is all just a loose framework that allows for a joyfully exuberant series of musical performances from the incredibly game cast. Brosnan caught a bit of flack for his vocal performance, but many fans of the film are able to look past this, including Deborah Ross in her review for The Spectator, who says, "He tries so hard to sing you can actually see all the vocal lessons he's had in the set and tension of his jaw. It's strangely moving, this triumph of effort over talent."

21. Mars Attacks!

Some movies require an actor to really dig into the psychology of a role and break down character motivations in order to deliver something meaningful and genuine. Others only require their actors to show up and have fun camping it up, and those are exactly the kind of roles populating Tim Burton's "Mars Attacks!," an alien invasion spoof that hearkens back to the '50s in its depiction of humans as broad caricatures reacting to goofy-looking Martians.

Brosnan is fully committed to the bit as the top scientist to the president (Jack Nicholson), perpetually smoking a pipe and managing to make women fall in love with him even after he's been reduced to just a head by alien experimentation. The film is fun and fluffy and totally inconsequential. But as the Orlando Sentinel puts it, "If 'Mars Attacks!' is a marvelous showcase for some ingenious and kitschy special effects, it's also a movie in which some of Hollywood's most talented actors can show how they behave on the fringes of interplanetary insanity."

20. Riverdance: The Animated Adventure

"Riverdance" is an Irish theater production that recently celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2020, a show consisting of dozens of step dancers strutting their stuff while backed by some iconic Irish folk melodies. It's a fun yet quaint affair that doesn't offer much in the way of story to accompany its performative spectacle. Certainly it wouldn't bring to mind giant magical deer performing said dance numbers in a coming-of-age tale about a lighthouse and an evil huntsman (Brendan Gleeson).

Yet that's exactly what Netflix's animated adaptation presents, with the grandson (Sam Hardy) of a longtime lighthouse keeper (Brosnan, who also plays the main deer) inheriting the responsibility of keeping darkness at bay while learning the truth about the light-footed deer who give life to the region's rivers. Though primarily aimed at kids, it's an entertaining adventure for all ages, with Decider proclaiming that it "offers a new musical chapter to fans of the original production, as well as a bit of folklore and a rousing tale for kids with a sense of humor and the usual complement of wise talking animals."

19. The Mirror Crack'd

Adaptations of mystery novelist Agatha Christie's work have been a mixed bag, from the original incarnations of "Murder on the Orient Express" and "Death on the Nile" to the recent Kenneth Branagh version of those same stories. Somewhere in the middle is this underseen Miss Marple whodunit, where the famous detective is played by Angela Lansbury (who had obviously had many years of "Murder, She Wrote" to practice for the role).

The plot revolves around a murder that takes place on an American film set that has invaded a sleepy English town. Suspects involve a who's who of big name actors, including Elizabeth Taylor, Rock Hudson, Tony Curtis, Kim Novak, and a baby-faced Pierce Brosnan in one of his first roles. It may not rank among the best cinematic murder mysteries, but Spirituality & Practice maintains that "everything about 'The Mirror Crack'd' is just right — from the lovely sets to the b****y repartee among the Hollywood folk."

18. Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga

This may be another musical at least partially influenced by ABBA, but this time around, Brosnan does not find himself on the musical side of things. In a silly lampooning of the actual Eurovision Song Contest that gave ABBA their start, he plays the disapproving father of Lars (Will Ferrell), who along with his platonic friend Sigrit (Rachel McAdams), dreams of representing Iceland in the titular contest. When a humorously tragic incident eliminates much of their qualifying competition, the pair find themselves selected to compete and fulfill their dreams.

Brosnan finds himself playing the straight man to the ridiculousness on display, as everything from the songs to the '70s-inspired costumes are turned to 11. The humor hits its target more often than not, and according to the Chicago Sun-Times, the film is exactly what it's trying to be — "an incredibly goofy broad satire filled with wonderfully awful pop songs and infectiously over-the-top, all-in performances from the game ensemble cast."

17. The World Is Not Enough

Brosnan's third time at bat playing James Bond suffers in many ways by comparison to what came both before and after it. Compared to the fresh thrills of "Goldeneye" and the memorable craziness of "Die Another Day," this entry is so mannered as to almost be forgettable. Yet there's a lot that works about this relatively straightforward spy thriller, from the compelling Bond girl turned villainess played by Sophie Marceau to a crackerjack opening speedboat chase across the Thames.

The plot concerns a terrorist (Robert Carlyle) who's targeting an oil pipeline for nefarious ends, but as with most films in the series, it's really just an excuse to shuffle Bond from one action set piece to another. As ever, the theatrics are anchored by the leading man. The New York Times notes that "in his third and most comfortable effort to model the Bond mantle, Pierce Brosnan bears noticeably more resemblance to a real human being. He shows signs of emotion, cuts back on the lame puns, and makes lifelike conversation with fellow characters."

16. Evelyn

Always one to pay tribute to his Irish roots, Pierce Brosnan takes center stage in this legal drama revolving around a real-life Irish Supreme Court case where Desmond Doyle, a father of three, challenged an outdated law stating that a single parent could not raise children. He's put in this position when his wife abandons the family and his mother-in-law reports him to the authorities for attempting to maintain the household on his own.

Despite having issues with alcohol and consistent employment, Desmond genuinely loves his kids and does whatever he can to care for them, which provides the emotional crux for this impassioned, if occasionally overzealous story. Still, it provides the star with a great opportunity to flex his talents, as the Austin Chronicle reports, "It's lovely to see Brosnan cast in such an average-man role instead of the debonair parts he's generally offered." While the part of Doyle may have been too treacly in the hands of a lesser actor, Brosnan manages to keep the character human, grounded, and sympathetic while honest with his flaws.

15. Final Score

Sometimes Brosnan's role in a given film provides the actor with new depths to explore. Other times, it's just a glorified cameo, there to add gravitas to an otherwise trashy project. The latter is definitely the case in this Dave Bautista vehicle, which features the "Guardians of the Galaxy" star doing his best John McClane impression as he battles against a group of Russian-ish terrorists who are primed to blow up a packed soccer stadium.

There's nothing terribly creative or original about the proceedings, and Brosnan is really only there as a human MacGuffin (Ray Stevenson's terrorist leader initiated the conflict in the hopes of capturing the brother, Brosnan, he believes betrayed him). But it's executed with flair, and Bautista acquits himself as an action hero outside of the Marvel context. Variety's review calls it "an entertainingly over-the-top ride" that "has an air of good-natured, slightly tongue-in-cheek excess rather than formulaic cash-in." Come on, it's Bond and Drax — how can you go wrong?

14. The Foreigner

Jackie Chan is a martial arts virtuoso who's been entertaining audiences for decades with films that strike a balance between hard-hitting combat and Buster Keaton-inspired slapstick comedy, the results of which have made him a worldwide icon. In "The Foreigner," however, Chan gets to show a new side of his screen persona — quieter, calmer, wracked by grief, yet every bit as deadly. In this new context, one of the biggest stars in the world makes it feel like we're seeing him for the first time.

Reuniting with "GoldenEye" director Martin Campbell, Pierce Brosnan plays a former IRA leader turned bureaucrat who may hold information about the terrorist attack that killed Chan's daughter. As Chan pursues the man with the answers he's looking for, the stakes are raised, and secrets are revealed. The Chicago Reader calls the film a "twisty, bracing political thriller, giving Chan room to display his dramatic ability and letting Brosnan flesh out a vigorous, complex character."

13. The Fourth Protocol

With Jason Bourne, Ethan Hunt, and of course 007 being the biggest spy names in town, it's easy to forget that the genre is capable of more than propulsive action and death-defying stunts. Sometimes, a slow-burn investigative thriller can ratchet up the tension just as effectively as a series of explosions. In Fredrick Forsyth's adaptation of his own book, we see just how easily atomic warfare can be triggered.

In "The Fourth Protocol," Michael Caine plays a British spy on the outs with his superiors, who's on the trail of a murderous KGB agent (Brosnan) with plans to detonate an atomic bomb in such a way as to make the Americans look responsible. Eschewing bombastic set pieces for grounded detective work, the film features an increasingly evolving plot and sharp dialogue, with The Washington Post describing it as "streamlined and rich at the same time –- like the best of the James Bond films, but serious."

12. Tomorrow Never Dies

Pierce Brosnan's second outing in the vaunted James Bond franchise may not have reached the heights of his debut, but it still offers a compellingly modern (for the time) plot about a media baron (Jonathan Pryce) with intentions on starting a world war that he will have exclusive coverage of. A bit ridiculous, sure, but by Bond standards, it's almost realistic.

The film also features Michelle Yeoh as one of the all-time great Bond girls, who proves an equal match to our hero in a thrilling motorcycle chase where handcuffs force them to maneuver around the same bike. The finale may not match up to the action that precedes it, but as BBC notes, this is still "a strong entry, with Brosnan the comfortable, confident face of the invigorated franchise, reflecting the Connery glory days 30 years earlier."

11. The Thomas Crown Affair

This remake of the 1968 Steve McQueen film of the same name has Brosnan playing the titular billionaire, whose boredom inspires him to steal a priceless Monet painting simply for the thrill of it. Things get complicated when he starts to develop feelings for the insurance investigator (Rene Russo) who's pursuing him, with their attraction to one another providing some extra juice to this cat-and-mouse game.

The film is erotic in a comfortably PG-13 kind of way, and director John McTiernan (who worked with Brosnan on the far less successful "Nomads") films the heist sequence with plenty of flourish. It all adds up to an entertaining romp, with the San Francisco Examiner noting that "Brosnan merely could have glided along on the oily panache he oozes as James Bond ... but Crown's arrogance is a front for his chronic discontent, which Brosnan inhabits with a flaneur's aimless lassitude." It's hard to live up to the cool of McQueen, but "The Thomas Crown Affair" proves that Brosnan can hold his own against all-time legends.

10. Mrs. Doubtfire

Despite having a relaxed, amiable air about him, it's rare for Brosnan to be cast in outright comedies, especially ones where he isn't the romantic lead. In this break from the normally serious or action-packed fare, he takes a supporting role in the beloved Robin Williams comedy "Mrs. Doubtfire," which is about a divorced dad who disguises himself as an eccentric female housekeeper in order to spend time with his kids.

Viewed in a modern context, not everything about the crossdressing premise passes the smell test, but the film is so consistently hilarious and heartwarming that most viewers won't be bothered. Brosnan's role as the ex-wife's (Sally Field) new boyfriend also manages to avoid obvious stereotypes. ReelViews observes, "One thing 'Mrs. Doubtfire' does well is to avoid the often-used plot device of turning Pierce Brosnan's ... new love interest into a snake. He never comes across as anything other than charming, and [William's] dislike of him is based purely on selfish reasons."

9. Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again

If the original "Mamma Mia!" was a pleasantly diverting if occasionally grating musical exercise, its sequel doubles down on the joyful exuberance that made its predecessor so memorable. Instead of overstaying its welcome, this approach actually results in a carefree delight of a film that's somehow more enjoyable, despite a significantly reduced role for Meryl Streep.

The wafer-thin plot involves Amanda Seyfried throwing a massive party to celebrate the opening of her Greek island hotel, in addition to a number of flashbacks involving Lily James as the younger version of Streep's character, but it's all just an excuse for further performances of hit ABBA songs. It's light, it's fun, it's incredibly sweet, and Sight & Sound gave credit to Brosnan for "twinkling his way through self-conscious gags about his notorious vocals."

8. Love Is All You Need

It's a real shame that most American audiences will only know Susanne Bier for her Netflix thriller "Bird Box" because the accomplished Danish filmmaker has been helming excellent works on both sides of the pond, including "After the Wedding," "The Night Manager," and the Oscar-winning "In a Better World." By contrast, one of her lighter efforts is "Love Is All You Need," a charmingly colorful rom-com starring Brosnan and Trine Dyrholm.

The actors play single parents who are both in Italy to celebrate the marriage of their son and daughter, respectively, but find that despite their initial frostiness, the possibility of their own autumn romance emerges. It's surprisingly mature given the simplicity of the premise, and the Toronto Star confirms that "Brosnan and Dyrholm make for a most interesting and credible pair, drawing us in with their mutual curiosity as they both weigh the chances of love after sadness."

7. The Matador

Pierce Brosnan's aptitude for comedy has never been put to better use than in "The Matador," a two-hander with frequent co-star Greg Kinnear, where Brosnan plays an aging hit man who's grown increasingly disillusioned with his line of work. By chance, he befriends Kinnear's beleaguered businessman at a hotel bar in Mexico City, and the two strike up an unusual friendship that ultimately have consequences neither could imagine.

The veteran actors play off each other beautifully, and the film manages a tonal juggling act that leans into the absurdity of their relationship while also embracing its darker implications. The Seattle Times lavishes praise, stating, "Brosnan, who's got impeccable comedic instincts ... saunters through the film with a vaguely sinister ease."

6. The Tailor of Panama

Eagle-eyed readers will no doubt have noticed a large number of spy thrillers on this list — significantly more so, in fact, than just those featuring the spy Brosnan is best known for playing. If Ian Fleming's source novels for 007 emphasize action and escapism, his contemporary John le Carré is better known for his intricate plotting and attention to detail.

The difference is stark in "The Tailor of Panama," an adaptation of one le Carré's more humorous tomes, in which Brosnan plays a disgraced former British agent who attempts to restore his good name with the help of a tailor (Geoffrey Rush) who never lets the truth get in the way of a good story. Leaning both into and against his popular persona gives the actor plenty of room to play, as CNN notes that "he utilizes all his sexy charm but still pokes fun at his 007 image as the world's most successful and glamorous agent." If you're fan of fun Brosnan, then you should definitely take a trip to Panama.

5. Mister Johnson

Before they re-teamed for "Evelyn," Brosnan initially joined forces with director Bruce Beresford (best known for "Driving Miss Daisy") in this tale of a Nigerian clerk (Maynard Eziashi) in the 1920s who's so indoctrinated into the British way of life that he imagines himself one of them, dressing in a fancy white suit and conducting himself in a boisterous manner that draws plenty of attention, if not always the best kind.

Mister Johnson gets into hot water when he comes up with an embezzlement scheme to help his boss (Brosnan) fulfill his dream of building a road. Though the boss agrees, when the scheme is found out, it's Johnson who takes the blame. Equally funny and poignant, the Austin Chronicle says that it "maintains a comic tone throughout until it turns tragic at the end, a strategy which allows the audience to root for its resilient hero yet also feel remorseful about the consequences of his actions."

4. The Long Good Friday

"The Long Good Friday" is crime drama that features one of Brosnan's very first roles, in which he has no lines and is only on screen for a minute or two. So how does it rank so high in his filmography? For starters, it's one of the best-reviewed films he's ever been involved in, one that follows the struggles of an English crime lord (Bob Hoskins) who's attempting to go straight but finds his world unraveling around him, which puts a strain on both his business ventures and his relationship with his mistress (Helen Mirren).

It also speaks volumes to the actor's screen presence that — spoiler alert — his primary role is to sit in a car and point a gun at Hoskins during the film's final moments, and that between the two of them, it creates a riveting sense of fate and impending doom without either of them saying a word. In Roger Ebert's glowing review, he called the film an "amazing piece of work, not only for the Hoskins performance but also for the energy of the filmmaking, the power of the music, and, oddly enough, for the engaging quality of its sometimes very violent sense of humor."

3. GoldenEye

There is a slightly different timeline where Pierce Brosnan would have gotten to play James Bond much earlier than he did. Before Timothy Dalton took over from Roger Moore, Brosnan was actually set to star in "The Living Daylights." But then his contract for "Remington Steele" got renewed and he was taken out of the running. Better late than never, as his first outing as 007 in "GoldenEye" is frequently cited as his best.

This is a more reflective, post-Cold War iteration of the character, who still goes through the expected motions but is a bit more aware of how emotionally stunted they've made him. Though not quite as deep as Daniel Craig's iteration would ultimately prove to be, Brosnan's emergence proved hugely successful, and as The Hollywood Reporter puts it, the film is "two hours of well-executed thrills, high-tech mayhem and one-of-a-kind comedy. Violent, edgy, just a little bloodthirsty and teasingly sexy." In other words, it's everything you'd want a Bond film to be.

2. The World's End

One day you're playing a roguish rebel, giving the finger to institutions and living life on your own terms. The next, you are the institution, cautioning the next generation against such indecent behavior. This trajectory speaks to the kind of roles Brosnan has been offered in his older age, and it also speaks to the general theme of this madcap sci-fi comedy from Edgar Wright (the third in his so-called "Cornetto Trilogy").

The film sees Wright regulars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost embarking on a quest to drink at 12 different pubs in a single night, first as a way to relive their adolescence, then as a gambit to evade the alien invaders that have taken over their hometown. Brosnan plays the boys' old teacher, now a representative for the robo-armada that preaches conformity. It's a small but effective role in a film that's equally hilarious and heartbreaking. The New Yorker notes that it has a "happy knack of deploying gags not as comic relief but as smart bombs, dropped into the midst of violent activity, until we can't tell what is funny and what hurts."

1. The Ghost Writer

For an actor with so many spy films dotting his resume, it's strangely ironic that one of the most effective projects Pierce Brosnan has starred in is one where he is not the investigator but rather the subject of investigation. In this thriller from controversial director Roman Polanski, Brosnan plays a Tony Blair-esque former prime minister with a divisive track record and more than a few skeletons in his closet.

Ewan McGregor takes the lead as an unnamed ghostwriter who's reluctantly hired to polish up the PM's memoirs, although he quickly finds himself sucked into a vast conspiracy where only his wits and intuition can keep him safe. In perhaps a career-best performance, Brosnan plays his cards close to the chest, yet he reveals a three-dimensional character who's both contentious and wounded. This Boston Globe review from Ty Burr says it best: "This Pierce Brosnan is a new one on me: Expansive, dismissive, charmingly cruel, he wields power like a professional athlete." With decades' worth of commanding performances, Brosnan's triumph here is playing a leader with all the authority and none of the power.