The Talented Mr Gosling: A Highlight Reel of Ryan’s Best Roles

The Talented Mr Gosling
Ryan Gosling was part of 2023’s most successful film – we look back through some of his past Hollywood hit acting roles!

Ryan Gosling has serious acting chops – he tackles gritty, intense dudes and charming romantics with equal skill. His latest success was playing Ken in Barbie in a movie I didn’t expect to beat the likes of Oppenheimer and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 from the list of 2023 movie releases, but it did. Let’s check out some of his most memorable parts over the years.

Barbie (2023) – Warner Bros

Official Trailer from Warner Bros. Pictures

You may have seen that Ryan Gosling played Ken in the new Barbie movie, the highest-earning box office hit in 2023 according to the Filmzie TOP 10 BOX OFFICE HITS IN 2023 news. When I first heard the news, I thought – Ken? Isn’t he usually just Barbie’s boring plastic boyfriend? But the more I see Gosling take on the character, the more I think he brought something really interesting – he literally brought new dimensions – to someone we’ve known mostly as a doll.

The version that doesn’t give away any spoilers- Just in case you haven’t watched it!

In the previews, Ken looks like Barbie’s perfect cheery partner, joining her fabulous adventures in Barbieland and beyond. But Gosling seems to hint at hidden depths and complexities in Ken’s personality underneath the surface. This isn’t the same old accessory Ken – Gosling’s performance looks to give him his own charm and identity.

Through this reimagined version, the Barbie movie seems to touch on issues many high schoolers face around figuring out who they are, relationships, and feeling pressure to fit narrow roles. Exploring Ken’s character development might make a meaningful contribution to those themes if you do decide to watch the movie after seeing the trailer.

So, while at first glance he resembles the familiar toy, Gosling’s Ken could bring some thoughtful new perspectives on who these characters represent behind all the bright pink glitter. There might be some relatable human stuff – I mean, relatable experiences – for viewers to connect with.

The Heartthrob: The Notebook (2004) – New Line Cinema

Official Trailer from MarVista Entertainment

In The Notebook, he’s totally dreamy as Noah, falling hard for Rachel McAdams’ Allie one summer. Like, their chemistry hits you right in the feels. That kissing-in-the-rain scene? Iconic. Gets me every time.

The Comic Relief: Crazy Stupid Love (2011) – Warner Bros. Pictures

Official Trailer from Warner Bros. Pictures

Meanwhile, Crazy Stupid Love lets him get silly as suave dude Jacob. He schools the recently-divorced Steve Carell on dating, leading to some hilarious moments. Maybe not Oscar-worthy stuff but definitely entertaining.

The Astronaut: First Man (2018) – Universal Pictures

Official Trailer from Universal Pictures

With First Man, he reteams with La La Land director Damien Chazelle to portray legendary astronaut Neil Armstrong. It intimately captures the dangerous mission to land on the moon in ’69. Claire Foy kills it as his worried wife. The visuals and music pull you right in.

The Troubled Teacher: Half Nelson (2006) – ThinkFilm

No trailers from an official film studio

In Half Nelson, he earns major acting props as junior high teacher Dan, secretly fighting addiction. When student Drey discovers his secret, they form an unlikely friendship. It’s an honest look at loneliness and why positive role models matter.

The Quirky Loner: Lars and the Real Girl (2007) – MGM (Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer)

No trailers from an official film studio

Get this – in Lars and the Real Girl, he dates a sex doll! Wild premise but he makes socially awkward Lars sympathetic, not gross. It’s surprisingly sweet with an message about the importance of human connection.

The Criminal: The Place Beyond the Pines (2012) – Focus Features

Official trailer from European film distribution studio – StudiocanalUK

In The Place Beyond the Pines, he’s a motorcycle stunt guy who turns to robbing banks. With his leather jacket and scowling, he oozes troubled James Dean vibes but keeps it real. His choices echo through generations.

The Banker: The Big Short (2015) – Paramount Pictures

Official Trailer from Paramount Pictures

He goes more comedic as smarmy banker Jared in The Big Short, about the mid-2000s housing collapse. Not an obvious pick for him but he embraces playing this slick opportunist. He actually makes subprime mortgages interesting!

The Family Man: Blue Valentine (2010) – The Weinstein Company

Official trailer from European film distribution studio – StudiocanalUK

In raw indie Blue Valentine, he plays Dean, opposite Michelle Williams. They depict a couple growing apart – the highs of young love and brutal lows of its unraveling. Punch-to-the-gut stuff showing how reality can wreck dreams.

The Buddy: The Nice Guys (2016) – Warner Bros. Pictures

Official Trailer from Warner Bros

For The Nice Guys, he buddies up with Russell Crowe as a bumbling 70’s private investigator. The sharp script and buddy dynamic make it super entertaining. Gosling kills it on the comedy front again.

The Jazz Musician: La La Land (2016) – Lionsgate

La La Land pairs him with Emma Stone as a jazz musician pursuing love and dreams in Hollywood. It nostalgically celebrates Los Angeles with dazzling visuals, tunes, and bittersweet ending. Their palpable chemistry carries it.

The Replicant: Blade Runner 2049 (2017) – Warner Bros. Pictures

Official Trailer from Warner Bros

In Blade Runner 2049’s visually mind-blowing future, he’s “K”, an android hunting rogue robots. Denis Villeneuve crafts a neo-noir world that raises profound questions on memory and humanity. Subtle but complex stuff.

The verdict? Gosling is one of the most compelling leading dudes out there right now. Whether navigating profound sadness or comedy gold, he fully becomes his roles. He’s impossible to look away from and always brings his A-game. The guy’s got endless versatility and magnetism. Major talent.

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