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Welcome back.
He's known for his impersonations and manic stand up,
but he also shines in dramatic roles.
Welcome to watchmojo.com,
and today we'll be counting down our picks for Robin Williams top 10 performances.
I do voices.
Number ten.
Armand Goldman, "The Birdcage."
You'd think a movie this screwball would be licensed for Williams to showcase his brand of manic comedy,
but no,
he turns in a restrained performance as a drag club owner whose son is marrying into an ultra conservative family.
Oh God, it's a nightmare.
Opposite Nathan Lane's screaming Queen,
Williams is the straight man, pun intended, who blends comedy and kindness.
Get the God Damn pinky down.
Make your fingers like I am, alright.
Stop trembling, hold the knife boldly and with strength.
Oh God, I pierced the toast.
While he mostly keeps himself in check, he does let fly sometimes.
You do an eclectic celebration of a dance!
You do Fosse, Fosse, Fosse!
You do Martha Graham, Martha Graham, Martha Graham!
Or Twyla, Twyla!
Number nine.
Seymour "Sy" Parrish, "One Hour Photo."
Williams earned rave reviews by stepping far out of character to play a photo technician who develops an unhealthy obsession with a young family.
Snapshot, then, was originally a hunting term.
The usually effervescent comedian tones himself down so much,
Sy practically disappears with a forgettable face and voice that hide his anguish and isolation.
By making a sympathize with this creepy character,
Williams proves he can channel his energy into both comedy and thrilling drama.
- I just took pictures. - You have the right to remain silent.
Number eight.
Vladimir Ivanov, "Moscow on the Hudson."
Hello, Mister, may I buy lamb chop?
Sure thing, Mister.
Flaunting his ear for accents,
Williams becomes a sensitive Soviet saxophonist who defects while visiting New York
which means he completed crash courses in both Russian and sax playing.
Please tell me now, if I want an order, I should go back to Moscow and stand in line for bread.
Still bread.
Still Bread!
This early dramatic role earned Williams a Golden Globe nomination as he uses his eccentric and endearing qualities
to fad into the part of an immigrant whose confronting culture shock and the difficulties of building a new life.
Hey you, f*** yourself.
OK, pal. OK, Mister.
Number seven.
The Genie, "Aladdin".
Ten thousand years will give you such a crick in the neck.
Williams and cartoons are a match made in Heaven.
Thanks to his rapid-fire improv and stream of consciousness comedy,
(Alright sparky, here's the deal)
the medium allows him to zoom between impersonations, musical numbers, and improvised dialogue.
In fact, most of the Genie's lines are ad-libbed.
While kids may not get all his jokes,
both young and old love this movie thanks to Williams' contributions.
His performance was so out of this world, a special Golden Globe was created to honor him.
Your a prisoner.
It's all part and parcel, the whole Genie gig.
Phenomenal, cosmic power. Ity-bity living space.
Number six.
Dr. Malcolm Sayer, "Awakenings."
In the most understated performance of his career,
Williams portrays a doctor who discovers a miracle drug that temporarily cures a group of catatonic patients.
When you wake up in the morning, it'll be the next morning. I promise.
The normally unrestrained actor is borderline geeky in this emotional real-life story.
His shyness and introversion are indicated by subtle body language rather than dialogue.
Williams uncluttered work anchors the movie and earned him another Golden Globe nod.
Your medicine could be taken away.
They can do that.
You could wake up in the morning, and it won't be there.
Number five.
Parry, "The Fisher King."
This role was made for him.
You're out of your f***ing mind.
Bingo, come on Jack.
Free up the little guy.
Let him flap in the breeze.
Williams landed his third Oscar nomination and his third Golden Globe win by playing an unbalanced but kind-hearted homeless guy with a tragic past in this Terry Gilliam masterpiece.
Let's do it right here.
Let's go to that place of "Splendour in the Grass."
Behold my magic wand and tree your golden orbs right now.
Showing he can easily lean towards insanity,
Williams goes all-out,
but also shines during quiet moments.
I have a hard on for you the size of Florida.
He and Jeff Bridges both excel amid Gilliam's theatrics in this heartbreaking tale of compassion and redemption.
Where are you?
Where are you?
Number four.
Daniel Hillard, Mrs. Euphegenia Doubtfire, "Mrs. Doubtfire."
You'd think all that gear would be restrictive,
but Williams talent, dynamism, and insanity burst through the mask, wig, muddled accent, and fat suit,
and earned him another Golden Globe.
Mrs. doubtfire showcases everything we love about Robin Williams.
[Impersonating a monster] I want you in the worst way.
This is certainly a rough meeting and it's not going very well for me, I'll tell you that.
And he is definitely able to sell it as both the dedicated father who'd do anything to see his kids,
and the eccentric but strict British nanny.
Oh, sir.
I saw some angry member of the kitchen staff, did you not tip them?
Oh, the terrorists!
They ran that way. It was a run-by fruiting.
Number three.
John Keating, "Dead Poets Society."
You can also imagine, maybe, John Wayne as Macbeth going,
"Well, is this a dagger I see before me?"
Williams brings the classics to life as an unconventional, idealistic prof at an exclusive boarding school,
and earned an Oscar nod for his work.
"But only in their dreams can men be truly free.
'Twas always thus, and always thus will be."
No, Keating.
This film may not have won every critics praise,
but it's a high point on Williams resume that cemented his place as a dramatic force.
At his best when he's playing against type,
Williams and his simple controlled performance definitely "seize the day".
"Gather ye rosebuds while ye may."
The Latin term for that sentiment is "Carpe Diem."
Number two.
Adrian Cronauer, "Good Morning, Vietnam."
Hey, this is not a test, this is rock'n'roll.
This film balances the elements that make Williams great.
As an Army DJ during the Vietnam War,
he's able to go off the rails with ad-libbed monologues.
What's the weather like out there?
It's hot. Damn hot! Real hot!
Hottest things is my shorts.
I could cook things in it. A little crotch pot cooking.
Well, can you tell me what it feels like?
Fool, it's hot! I told you again!
Were you born on the sun?
It's damn hot!
But he also treats the seriousness of war with dignity, and brings authenticity to the role.
His hyper energy is put to excellent use,
and for that reason this Williams' masterpiece earned him his first Oscar nod and a Golden Globe.
[impersonating an Intelligence Officer] We're having a major difficulty in finding the enemy.
[as Adrian Cronauer] What do you use to look for them?
[impersonating an Intelligence Officer] Well, we ask people, "Are you the enemy?"
And whoever says yes, we'd shoot them.
Number one.
Sean Maguire, "Good Will Hunting."
Williams finally took home Oscar Gold for his vital supporting role as a counselor to Matt Damon's troubled Will Hunting.
This film has none of the manic comedy that made him famous in "Mork and Mindy,"
though he did improv such hilarious dialogue he made the cameraman laugh and shape the shot.
She used to fart in the sleep.
I thought I’d share that with you.
One night it was so loud it woke the dog up.
Instead Williams presents the most sincere, gentle, and human performance of his career.
And look at you,
I don't see an intelligent, confident man.
I see a cocky, scared, shitless kid.
Do you agree with our list?
What the f*** am I watching here?
Which is your favorite Robin Williams performance?
My name is Dr. Bill, I'll be your surgeon.
Oh, there you are.
For more top 10's about your favorite actors,
be sure to subscribe to watchmojo.com
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Top 10 Robin Williams Performances

26288 Folder Collection
Colin Lin published on August 12, 2014    Colin Lin translated    Vivian Lam reviewed
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