Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The 7 Best And 7 Worst Miles Teller Movies Ranked

Long before he captured hearts as Bradley "Rooster" Bradshaw in "Top Gun: Maverick," Miles Teller spent his days in Citrus County, Florida, where he graduated from Lecanto High School in 2005 (per WFTS). His journey into acting began his sophomore year of high school (via the Tampa Bay Times). During his childhood, Teller was more interested in playing baseball than he was in acting: He dreamed of a future in sportscasting ... until a young teacher, Beth Bedee, took over Lecanto High's drama program. Teller signed up for theater and never looked back. Teller further explained what sparked his acting passion, stating, "When I got on stage and got the first laugh, I was hooked. It absolutely felt like something had been missing from my life up until that point." The actor showered Bedee with praise too, explaining, "Absolutely without her I don't think I would've ended up where I'm at." Coincidentally, Teller's first onstage role was as Willard in "Footloose" — a role he'd reprise onscreen in the 2011 remake of the classic '80s film.

His film debut came in the 2010 Nicole Kidman vehicle "Rabbit Hole" in a role NPR called "touching." Teller has since explored vastly different characters — from lovelorn teenagers to superheroes. Some of his films have resonated with critics and audiences alike, while others have struggled to find love. Let's take a look at some examples of both.

Worst: Fantastic Four

In 2015, Miles Teller starred as Reed Richards aka Mr. Fantastic in the painful attempted reboot of the "Fantastic Four" franchise. On Rotten Tomatoes, "Fantastic Four" scored the lowest of all of Teller's films, and rightfully so. Although the film brought in over $167 million at the global box office, the majority of audiences and critics didn't buy into its superhero world.

Teller beat out "Game of Thrones" star Kit Harrington and Jack O'Connell for the role of Richards (per Variety), and the prerelease buzz surrounding the film was mostly positive. The reboot of the "Fantastic Four" was highly anticipated to spark new life into the franchise, but much like its 2007 predecessor (which starred Chris "Captain America" Evans in the role of Richards), the movie didn't make enough money to warrant a follow-up. The film's failure might be attributed to studio interference, as director Josh Trank was quick to lash out at the studio for compromising his vision (via Entertainment Weekly), the film also got wretched reviews and fan reactions.

Teller's Richards was a younger version of the character, as the cast is aged-down compared to Ioan Gruffudd's interpretation of the stretchy hero or John Krasinski's version. Despite the poor reception, Teller since said he would reprise the character happily if the script was good enough (per The Digital Fix).

Best: Top Gun: Maverick

The staggering box office success of "Top Gun: Maverick" helped shoot Miles Teller into the stratosphere of Hollywood blockbusters' leading men. Although Teller has worked steadily in film since 2010, his co-starring role alongside Tom Cruise proved the young actor could help carry a blockbuster movie. Teller portrays the son of Nick "Goose" Bradshaw (Anthony Edwards), the flying partner of Pete "Maverick" Mitchell, who died tragically in the first film. Teller even grew the famous Goose mustache for his role, and he said of the glorious 'stache (per Empire), "That was something I knew for sure had to be in there. And there are some nods to Goose in the movie which I think people will be very appreciative of."

Well-received by critics and audiences alike, the sequel to 1986's "Top Gun" managed to stoke the flames of nostalgia while still presenting its own provoking storyline. The summer blockbuster about fighter pilots also marks the third time Teller has paired with director Joseph Kosinski, as he worked with the filmmaker on both the psychological Netflix thriller "Spiderhead" and the tear-jerker fireman tale "Only the Brave." The film's success could pave the way for a "Top Gun" franchise: Teller joked (per Screen Rant) that he's "trying to get a 'Top Gun: Rooster'" and has "been pitching it. We'll see what happens."

Worst: Get a Job

No actor chooses only phenomenal film roles, and "Get a Job" proves Miles Teller is no exception. The 2016 comedy stars Teller as Will Davis, a recent college graduate who has a "set" future until a promised position at LA Weekly falls through. Will is forced to take a job as a night manager at a shady motel and loses that job after only one shift. Together, Will and his young friends attempt to navigate through uncertain professional futures.

"Get a Job" surrounds Teller with phenomenal and seasoned castmates (including Anna Kendrick, Bryan Cranston, and John Cho); however, the film failed to resonate with critics or audiences. Production wrapped in 2012, but the movie's release didn't occur for another four years after production wrapped — which is never a good sign in Hollywood. In a review of "Get a Job," Variety called it "a disappointing mix of onscreen talent, uneven social satire and juvenile humor."

Best: Whiplash

Although Miles Teller had six films under his belt by the time he starred in "Whiplash," it was his riveting performance in the film that cemented him as a strong lead actor in character-driven movies. Directed by Damien Chazelle, "Whiplash" showcases the mental breakdown of Teller's character, Andrew Nieman. Andrew, a drum-playing genius, is accepted into a highly competitive and prestigious music conservatory, where he experiences psychological torture at the hands of his relentlessly abusive instructor, Terence Fletcher (played by J.K. Simmons, who won an Academy Award for his role). Made for just over $3 million, "Whiplash" grossed almost $49 million at the box office.

Teller's role in this psychological thriller required intense training, and to prepare, the actor earned his stripes as a drummer. The actor said about his drumming (per Collider), "It's something that with absolutely three hours' practice I got to a pretty good place with it, but yeah, I started getting blisters. [...] I would come onto set sometimes and I would look at the drum kit, and there was all this blood there." "Whiplash" scored well with audiences and critics. The movie put the spotlight on authentic characters pushed to extremes: Its unique story, along with Teller's commanding performance, makes "Whiplash" one of the actor's best movies.

Worst: Allegiant

In "Divergent," a teenage-centered dystopian film trilogy, Miles Teller plays antagonist Peter Hayes, facing off against Tris Prior (Shailene Woodley). The second film, "Allegiant," failed to hit audiences on the same level as the first and stands as one of Teller's worst films.

In "Allegiant," the next film in the series, Peter experiences momentary redemption and becomes a solid antihero before falling back into his smarmy ways. Along with Tris and others, Peter escapes the restrictive world of factions in post-apocalyptic Chicago before getting captured and turning on his friends. "Allegiant" bombed in the theaters, opening to poor box office numbers that paled in comparison to "Divergent" (per Forbes). Teller publicly expressed his displeasure with the film trilogy before the last film, "Insurgent" was released, and found himself walking back negative comments he made to W Magazine. In his interview with W, the actor implied that the films made him feel "dead inside." Later, he attempted to explain this to The Los Angeles Times, saying, "If I said 'dead inside, I meant just burnt out and fatigued from doing my first big-budget lengthy shoot and four months was a long time and I just wanted to relax afterwards."

Best: Only the Brave

"Only the Brave" tells the gripping and tragic tale of the Granite Mountain Hotshots — a wildfire-fighting team out of Prescott, Arizona. Based on a true story, the film follows the firefighters as they engage in battle with an epic blaze. Miles Teller plays Brendan McDonough, who was the only member of the hotshot firefighting team to survive the 2013 Yarnell Hill Fire. McDonough is a broken man struggling to get his life together after losing himself in the throes of drug addiction. McDonough begins the film as a screw-up and ends a pretty good firefighter and beloved team player, now wracked with survivor's guilt: Teller depicts this arc with nuance and authenticity and again proves his acting depth.

"Only the Brave" marked the first collaboration between Teller and director Joseph Kosinski, and while it only netted $26.4 million at the box office, the movie was generally well-received. The men of the Granite Mountain Hotshots deserve the tribute, and the film honors them sans heavy-handed saccharine moments. The Village Voice called Teller's performance a "revelation": "He nails the part of a quiet, exhausted loser who perpetually seems like he's looking down a dead end. Suddenly it's hard to imagine him playing anyone else."

Worst: That Awkward Moment

Despite its young cast of rising stars, "That Awkward Moment" came and went from theaters with little fanfare. In the film, Miles Teller plays Daniel, the best friend and wingman of the romantic lead, Jason (Zac Efron). The romantic comedy is set in New York City and is filled with tropes played out by many rom coms that came out before and since. Jason, Daniel, and their friend Mikey (Michael B. Jordan, whom Teller would work with again in "Fantastic Four") struggle with dating in the big city; yet the "twist" of blossoming romance between Jason and Ellie (Imogen Poots) comes as no surprise. Audiences didn't fall for this contrived and tired comedy, and the critics weren't fans either.

Rolling Stone panned the movie, saying, "Take three horny guys, all twentysomethings, mix with a plot that was old last century, and serve to an audience so desperate for [d***] jokes and toilet gags they might forgive a movie wired only with clichés." However, Travers did praise Teller: "Kudos to Teller [...] for generating whatever laughs manage to poke their heads above this sea of misogyny and missed opportunities." "That Awkward Moment" is forgettable, but Teller more than makes up for this misstep in a plethora of better film roles.

Best: The Spectacular Now

For Miles Teller, "The Spectacular Now" stands as his first Hollywood film in a leading man role and his first part opposite Shailene Woodley. Teller plays Sutter Keely, a partying high school senior who falls hard for the nerdy Aimee Finecky (Woodley). The story depicts Sutter as an alcoholic teenager attempting to escape memories of his dysfunctional and abusive father, Tommy (Kyle Chandler), whom he hasn't seen in years. As Sutter and Aimee grow closer, he recognizes his issues with alcohol and faces consequences for his drunken actions. Aimee vulnerably opens up to Sutter about her father's death from an opiate overdose, and Sutter faces his internal demons.

"The Spectacular Now" ends on a hopeful note, but it isn't neatly tied up with a bow — there's no promise of happily-ever-after here. In an interview on his breakout role with The Chicago Tribune, the actor said, "I think in high school people are not as comfortable being completely themselves. ... They're trying to be something. They want to be part of something." His understanding of teenage identity struggles brought realism to the film. Both Teller and Woodley delivered raw, vulnerable performances that caused critics to near-universally praise the movie.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

Worst: 21 & Over

The directorial debut of writing partners Jon Lucas and Scott Moore, who wrote "The Hangover" and "Four Christmases" among other hit comedies (per Variety), "21 & Over" is a rite-of-passage comedy that centers on soon-to-be college seniors and childhood best friends, Casey (Skylar Astin), Jeff (Justin Chon), and Miller (Miles Teller). The movie followed the successful formula of "The Hangover" (guys get a friend rip-roaring drunk before an important rite-of-passage), but it failed to land with audiences in the same manner. Jeff has an important medical school interview the day after his 21st birthday, thus he wants to wait to celebrate. Enter Casey and Miller, who convince their friend to shirk responsibility and imbibe ... chaos ensues and vague life lessons are imparted.

In a review of "21 & Over," Digital Spy said Teller was "motormouthing it like a young Vince Vaughn" in his role and accurately guessed the actor was "destined for much better things." Critics weren't taken with the boozy comedy in general.

Best: Rabbit Hole

Miles Teller made his film debut as Jason in the deeply emotional drama "Rabbit Hole" alongside Nicole Kidman and Aaron Eckhart. The movie focuses on the Corbetts — grieving parents (Kidman and Eckhart), who lose their young son in a tragic car accident. Becca and Howie Corbett deal with their loss in vastly different ways, and Becca soon begins meeting with Jason regularly. Immense guilt hangs over Jason, who is writing a comic book titled "Rabbit Hole" about parallel universes. The movie received critical acclaim and an Academy Award nomination for Kidman and opened the gates of Hollywood for Teller, who had just graduated from the Tisch School of the Arts (per Business Insider).

Coincidentally, as a result of a real-life tragic car accident, Teller has visible facial scars. (Oddly, he plays a character who gets into a severe car accident in "Whiplash.") The actor almost died as a result of the crash (per ABC News). Teller was 20 years old when the speeding car he was riding in flipped eight times. In the aftermath, due to his scars, he found difficulty in securing film roles, yet Teller cites his scars as the reason he landed "Rabbit Hole."

Worst: Two Night Stand

"Two Night Stand" was released the same year as "That Awkward Moment," but in this flat romantic comedy, Miles Teller plays Alec, the romantic lead. The film tells the story of Megan (Lio Tipton) who decides to have a one-night stand with Alec, whom she meets via a dating website. The feature directorial debut from Max Nichols, the son of famed director Mike Nichols, "Two Night Stand" attempts to follow the intriguing blueprint of the elder Nichols' romantic films (think "The Graduate"), but it falls flat.

Nichols told The New Yorker that he sifted through a mountain of "super bro'd-out comedies and by-the-numbers rom-coms" before he chose to direct "Two Night Stand," but unfortunately, the film received mixed reviews from critics and didn't even crack $500,000 at the box office. Although Teller has played believable romantic leads in films like "The Spectacular Now" and shares believable chemistry with Tipton, a plodding storyline kept this movie from becoming a hit.

Best: Thank You for Your Service

In "Thank You for Your Service," Miles Teller stars as Staff Sergeant Adam Schumann, a soldier returning home from Iraq after a long tour. The movie provides a sobering look at soldiers struggling to adjust to civilian life after experiencing the horrors of war. Adam and his fellow veterans, Billy Waller (Joe Cole) and Solo Aieti (Beulah Koale) each fall into dark times and grapple with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). They lean on one another while trying to navigate the waters of family life and civilian work. The movie paints a bleak picture of post-combat life, unafraid to look at the painful costs of war, and Adam's journey toward healing feels authentically gritty and sobering.

The 2010s ushered in a spate of excellent films about the war in Iraq and PTSD: Movies like "The Hurt Locker" and "American Sniper" shed light on the struggles of war veterans and were recognized during awards season. Alas, "Thank You for Your Service" didn't get the same acclaim as those higher-profile films, but it did receive favorable reviews. One critic, for Variety, wrote, "It's Miles Teller's film. Looking like a scarred and bulked-up Elvis, he gives a physically forceful performance of many colors, playing a man of loyal, pleasure-loving valor who knows that he's been blessed, but who can't stop letting what happened over there trip him into despair." The film failed to turn a profit at the box office, though.

Worst: Spiderhead

Based on "Escape from Spiderhead," a short story in The New Yorker by prolific author George Saunders, on paper "Spiderhead" has all the right ingredients for success. Miles Teller's frequent collaborator, Joseph Kosinski, directed the Netflix science-fiction thriller, which co-stars Chris Hemsworth. The plot deals with a fascinating and problematic scenario of chemical testing on prisoners. Teller stars as Jeff, an inmate who killed his best friend in a drunk-driving accident, and Hemsworth is Steve, the official supervising the testing program. Jeff ingests chemicals that cause him to act erratically, but he also suspects that something darker is happening at the facility.

The onscreen chemistry between Teller and Hemsworth in "Spiderhead" genuinely shines, but audiences and critics didn't love the film. One critic, with News.com.au, said that beyond Teller's character, the roles were thinly written and that the plot struggled to expand on and do service to Saunders' short story. Teller told Collider that acting like he was under emotion-affecting drugs was "tough, and when I was reading the script, there were certain scenes [that] I was really nervous about doing because, like you said, it's not coming up organically. There's nothing that's leading you to that emotion or anything, so that stuff was tough."

Best: Bleed for This

Miles Teller shines as Vinny Pazienza aka The Pazmanian Devil in the boxing biopic "Bleed for This." The film reunites Teller with his "Rabbit Hole" costar Aaron Eckhart and tells the moving story of a former world champion boxer. Pazienza suffered a broken neck in a horrific car accident and was told he may never walk again. The boxer defies the odds (and his doctors) with recovery and rigorous rehabilitation that allows him to box once more — Pazienza won his comeback match. Teller transformed himself for the role, and critics praised his performance, although many didn't love the film and it wasn't a huge financial success.

Forbes said, "Teller captures the rawness of the man and knows when to make it fun and games, when to double-down on the drama, and when to allow it all to collide in a marvelously messy, human pileup." Although "Bleed for This" received praise from most critics, particularly for Teller's performance, the real "Vinny Paz" sued director Ben Younger and the film's producers for forgery and failure to pay, though the lawsuit was eventually dismissed.

Even in his lesser and less-successful films, though, Teller shines. After the blockbuster success of "Top Gun: Maverick," his Hollywood career should continue gaining momentum. Whether Teller tackles another huge franchise or enlivens another complicated character in a small-budget drama, we can't wait to see what role he takes next.