Like many other famous Hollywood actors, Harrison Ford‘s career took off when the right doors opened. That’s right, literally doors. As is the case with acting, Harrison struggled to get his career off the ground. He had extra roles in several films but was labeled by Columbia Pictures as having “no future” in Hollywood. Since he had a family and children to care for, he knew he needed a job with a stable income. So, Ford took up carpentry as a way to provide for his family.
“Through carpentry, I fed my family and began to pick and choose from among the roles offered,” Ford said. “I could afford to hold out until something better came along. But I never gave up my ambition to be an actor. I was frustrated but never felt defeated by my frustration. ”
However, all of Ford’s hard work and determination paid off when he became friends with Hollywood casting director Fred Roos. Seeing potential in Ford, Roos set up a chance meeting by hiring Ford to build a door where the Star Wars casting calls were taking place. Roos insisted Ford be given a chance to audition for director George Lucas. Ford was cast as Han Solo and his career took off from there. Today, Harrison Ford has come a long way since his early film days when the best he could do was a few seconds of uncredited screen time and a few lines of “paging Mr. Ellis ”in the film Dead Heat on a Merry-Go-Round.
Though the actor is turning 80 this year, he still plans to swing back into theaters with the newest installment of Indiana Jonestentatively premiering on June 30, 2023. These are the best Harrison Ford movies.
Extraordinary Measures tells the true-life story of parents willing to go to extraordinary lengths to save the lives of their children who have a life-threatening disease. Harrison Ford plays scientist Robert Stonehill, who is contacted by the Crowley family. Their hope is that he will be able to help their children who have Pompe disease, a rare genetic anomaly that typically kills most children within early childhood. The Crowley family seeks out Stonehill’s aid, as he is among the best at what he does. However, his sarcastic and eccentric personality makes him difficult to work with, and Ford gives a realistically believable performance as the unethical but caring scientist.
7 The Mosquito Coast
Based on the novel of the same name by American author Paul Theroux, The Mosquito Coast chronicles the events of an American family uprooted in their lives to leave consumerism behind. They leave the US and journey to the jungles of Central America, seeking a simpler life and freedom from the constraints of the modern world. However, the father and head of the family, Allie Fox (Harrison Ford), soon takes things too far and makes life for his family a living hell. This is a different kind of role for Ford, as he plays a paranoid man seeking a “perfect life” and willing to go to extreme measures to achieve it. Unlike most of his characters, this one is unlikeable, and for good reason. The result is a fascinating and strange character study.
6 The Fugitive
In The Fugitive, Harrison Ford plays Richard Kimble, a man on the run from the law after being wrongly accused of murdering his wife. Now, Kimble is confused and at a loss as to who committed the crime and must sort out all the pieces before the law catches him. The Fugitive is popular among both movie critics and audiences and has high ratings on Rotten Tomatoes, scoring 96% and 89% among audiences. In addition, it’s labeled as “Exhilarating and intense, this high-impact chase thriller is a model of taut and efficient formula filmmaking, and it features Harrison Ford at his frantic best.” Indeed, it is, as we see Ford bring pain and heartbreak to his character, all while determinedly trying to stay one step ahead of the law to solve the crime.
5 Air Force One
At a diplomatic dinner in Moscow, Russia, American President James Marshall (Harrison Ford) promises to never negotiate with terrorists again. Yet, it’s a promise he may not be able to keep when Russian terrorists take over the plane flying President Marshall home. As the terrorists threaten his wife and daughter, President Marshall must use his wits and his experience as a veteran to save his family and everyone else on board. While the special effects of Air Force One may not have aged well, Harrison Ford’s acting withstands the test of time. He proves that a president can be a great leader while being ballsy and taking nonsense from no one.
While Harrison Ford may never have won an Academy Awardhe was nominated for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his performance as John Book in the 1985 crime drama Witness. In Witness, Ford’s character is a police officer giving protection to an Amish mother and her son who witnessed a brutal murder. The trio flees to the Amish countryside where Book soon develops feelings for the woman he is protecting. In addition, complications about the murder soon arise. The film has a high Rotten Tomatoes rating (93%) as well as a solid audience score (80%); it’s unique setting and plot device make it stand out, while Ford and the great director Peter Weir bring an unbelievable amount of empathy to the film.
3 Blade Runner
In this sci-fi / action film, Harrison Ford plays Rick Deckard, a bounty hunter tasked with the job of eliminating four escaped Replicants. Based on a Philip K. Dick short story, Blade Runner is one of those thought-provoking films that has sparked thousands of theories and conversations. When the Replicants show more human emotions than the humans who created them, who is more human? To this day, people still speculate about one of the film’s unanswered questions: is Rick Deckard a replicant?
What’s even more interesting is that director Ridley Scott and Harrison Ford had disagreements over the question, each taking a different side. While the true answer may be ambiguous, it just speaks more to Ford’s ability as an actor, as his character’s background was not cut and dry, but he was still able to deliver a strong performance.
2 Star Wars
“You know, sometimes I even amaze myself.” Harrison Ford amazed everyone with his breakout, charming performance as Han Solo in the Star Wars movies. From a cynical loner to the hero of the galaxy, Ford brought humanity to Solo which made him likable and relatable. He was the bad boy we all secretly admired. In addition to having some of the funniest lines from the Star Wars franchise, Solo is also the heartthrob of the movies. His chemistry and relationship with Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia goes down as one of the best onscreen romances in cinema history. “I think you just can not bear to let a gorgeous guy like me out of your sight.”
1 Indiana Jones
“You call this archeology?” The Indiana Jones series is among Harrison Ford’s most well-known movie. From the brown hat to the crack of his whip, the character of Indiana Jones is an icon, adored by many. That’s because when it comes to classic action heroes, Harrison Ford checks all the boxes: he is funny, witty, suave, and even a bit arrogant.
While it’s difficult to imagine any other actor wearing the brown hat and cracking the whip, the Indy we all know and love almost did not happen. That’s because Harrison Ford was not director Steven Spielberg’s first choice, as the role originally went to Tom Selleck. However, Selleck was already working on Magnum, PI and could not get the time off from shooting, so the role went to Ford, and the rest is cinema history. Today, Indiana Jones ranks among the top action / adventure heroes of all time, and we have not yet seen the last of him, with Indiana Jones 5 officially wrapping its production in February.
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