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On Ralph Fiennes’ birthday, a list of prolific English actor’s films to watch

The actor has been nominated for an Academy Award twice, for the films Schindler's List and The English Patient

Shilpa S
Dec 22, 2021

Ralph Fiennes turns 59 years old today, and what better day to take a look back at the English star’s stellar performances that made him such a heavyweight in cinema.

Starting his big screen debut in 1992, the actor rose the ranks to play some of the most iconic characters in history and being a part of epic franchises as well. From Harry Potter’s Lord Voldemort to the powerful M in James Bond, Fiennes seems to have gotten the hang of channelling his chameleon-like abilities in a way that allows him to easily slip into vastly different roles covering the whole spectrum. His conviction to his roles has also earned him numerous accolades, including nominations for the prestigious Academy Award.

The seasoned star has also joined the popular Kingsman film franchise, essaying the lead role in the prequel The King's Man, which will hit theatres in the country on December 31.

As you wait for The King’s Man to drop, here is a list of films of Fiennes to remind you of his great acting chops.

Schindler's List
8.7OTTplay Rating
Set in the backdrop of the Holocaust, this 1993 film tells the real life story of a German man, Oskar Schindler, who saved the lives of countless Jewish refugees, under the guise of employing them and thus preventing them from being sent to concentration camps. Fiennes essays the role of the main antagonist in the film, Amon Göth, a cruel Nazi military officer who carries out his ‘duties’ with ruthless efficiency, although Schindler manages to save his employees from his wrath through bribes. Fiennes' riveting performance was praised by critics, earning him a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.
The English Patient
7.6OTTplay Rating
Set against the backdrop of World War II, this romantic war drama recounts the tale of a man, badly burnt and disfigured after an aircrash, who narrates his story to a young nurse taking care of him. His raw and gut wrenching performance, fawned over by critics, earned him his second Academy Award nomination. The film is based on the 1992 novel of the same name by Michael Ondaatje.
The Grand Budapest Hotel
7.9OTTplay Rating
From the genius mind of Wes Anderson, this comedy tells the story of a concierge at the titular high class hotel, who is able to charm his way out of any situation. However one day he finds himself in a messy situation, when he is framed for the murder of a wealthy widow. Fiennes leads the film’s ensemble cast as the charismatic concierge, who goes on the run when he becomes accused of murder. Even among the list of seasoned stars, his performance stood out for its range and conviction, with many critics considered the actor’s performance as one of the highlights of the film.
Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire
7.8OTTplay Rating
Even audiences who are not die hard fans of J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world would be familiar with "He Who Must Not Be Named". Fiennes made his first appearance as the evil Lord Voldemort in this 2005 film. His portrayal as the film series’ main antagonist received rave reviews from fans and critics alike for his terrifying and menacing performance, etching his place in pop culture. He reprised his role in the sequels that followed as well.
6.2OTTplay Rating
Fiennes donned the director’s hat for this drama, which also marked his directorial debut. The 2011 film is adapted from the Shakespearean tragedy of the same name. Set in Rome, it tells the story of a Roman general who earns the displeasure of the city’s inhabitants, and soon its rulers, with his outspoken demeanour. Before long his headstrong attitude leads him down a path of betrayal and violence. Fiennes’ take on the age old tragedy, which drew parallels to the present times as well, led to widespread adulation.

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