Everyone and their grandmother knows Leonardo di Caprio deserves a damn Oscar. The man is an incredible actor and it’s a crying shame he hasn’t gotten the most prestigious of entertainment awards. As such, we thought it best to compile our top 5 memorable roles of his career, the ones that should have gotten him into that exclusive club.
1. What’s Eating Gilbert Grape?
In one of his earlier roles, Leo plays Arnie, a mentally challenged teenager opposite Johnny Depp as Gilbert, his caretaker older brother. The movie was received very well by critics but praised di Caprio’s performance in particular, a role that got him a nomination for Best Supporting Actor. He said, talking about preparing for the role, that he “had to really research and get into the mind of somebody with a disability like that. So I spent a few days at a home for mentally retarded teens. We just talked and I watched their mannerisms. People have these expectations that mentally retarded children are really crazy, but it’s not so. It’s refreshing to see them because everything’s so new to them.”
Unfortunately Leo lost out to Tom Hanks, for his role as Andrew Beckett in Philadelphia.
2. Catch Me If You Can
Leo wasn’t even nominated for his role in Steven Spielberg’s biographical crime drama film based on the life of Frank Abagnale, who, before his 19th birthday, successfully performed cons worth millions of dollars by posing as a Pan American World Airways pilot, a Georgia doctor, and a Louisiana parish prosecutor. Leo played the title role opposite Tom Hanks, an FBI officer seeking his arrest.
The film is a classic, netting a rating of 96% on aggregate website Rotten Tomatoes, indicating a huge amount of acclaim. If you haven’t seen it, it’s highly worth it.
The film that won hearts the world over, and over, and over. Leo played Jack Dawson, a poor man who managed to win tickets on board the Titanic’s maiden voyage. He falls in love with Rose, an upper class young woman and the two begin a short-lived love affair. In a now infamous scene, Jack helps Rose onto a door that seems only buoyant enough for one. CLEARLY it would have fit Jack too. The scene where the two meet at the ships bow and Rose exclaims that she feels like she’s flying has also become widespread among film fanatics.
4. The Wolf of Wall Street
A more recent movie for Leo, this one did get nominations for Best Actor and also Best Picture, but Matthew McConaughey won Best Actor while 12 Years A Slave took out Best Picture. Wolf of Wall Street is a biopic of sorts, detailing the life and times of Wall Street stockbroker Jordan Belfort and his less-than-legal methods for material gain. Leo’s efforts in this film make the character so perfectly believable, and the three-hour runtime of the film actually bearable. Plus, there’s a New Zealand mention right at the end.
5. The Revenant
I’m yet to see The Revenant but the rave reviews from critics and friends alike just cement the view that this might just be The One. He’s already picked up a Golden Globe for it, so what’s to stop him going all the way? He’s against industry heavyweights such as Bryan Cranston (Trumbo, as Dalton Trumbo), Matt Damon (The Martian, as Mark Watney), Michael Fassbender (Steve Jobs as Steve Jobs) and Eddie Rainmayne (The Danish Girl, as Lili Elbe/Einar Wegener)