Sandra Bullock is one of the biggest movie stars on the planet. Even when the traditional idea of the movie star has been replaced by recognizable franchises, Bullock has managed to maintain regular work – and with it, regular box office smashes. She’s worked with some of the greatest directors in the business and starred in countless blockbuster hits.
Bullock has been in some movies that didn’t turn out so well, but she’s also been in plenty that turned out fantastic. A lot of her films have stellar ratings on Rotten Tomatoes. So, here are Sandra Bullock’s 10 Best Movies, According To Rotten Tomatoes.
10 The Heat (64%)
After proving to Hollywood studios once and for all that female-led comedies could be box office gold with 2011’s Bridesmaids, Paul Feig reteamed with Melissa McCarthy for this buddy cop action comedy.
Whereas the genre is usually male-oriented, The Heat had female leads: McCarthy played a foul-mouthed Boston cop who doesn’t play by the rules alongside Sandra Bullock as a dorky, straight-laced, by-the-book FBI agent. We’ve been promised a sequel to this movie for years now (it’s been six years since it was first released), and sadly, it seems as though everyone has moved on and we may never see it.
9 TIE: The Blind Side (66%)
The Blind Side was a huge hit with audiences back in 2009, grossing over $300 million at the worldwide box office, but the critics were less impressed. It was criticized for being too preachy or schmaltzy or melodramatic.
Still, Sandra Bullock went on to win the Academy Award for Best Actress (deservingly, despite the film’s shortcomings) for her heartfelt work in the lead role. It was also nominated for Best Picture, surprising even the producers, in the first year that the Academy mandated ten nominees. (After that, the Academy scaled it back to “up to” ten nominees to avoid another mishap like this.)
8 TIE: A Time to Kill (66%)
This adaptation of the John Grisham thriller of the same title (Grisham is always a good source for big-screen material) has a convoluted, yet easy-to-follow plot: a girl is attacked, her attackers are arrested, her father kills the attackers, and her father is tried for murder.
Obviously, there are a lot of complicated ethics involved in this story to determine who are the heroes and who are the villains, and that’s where an incredible cast of actors comes in – to sell those moral considerations from each philosophical angle. Sandra Bullock stars alongside fellow A-listers like Samuel L. Jackson and Matthew McConaughey.
7 Ocean’s 8 (69%)
One of the most popular trends in Hollywood right now is the gender-swapping reboot, in which an old film property starring male leads is updated to star female characters. Last year, Sandra Bullock teamed up with Cate Blanchett, Rihanna, Anne Hathaway, Mindy Kaling, and a bunch of other awesome women to reboot the Ocean’s franchise of heist films.
Director Gary Ross didn’t make Ocean’s 8 as slick or as well-crafted as Steven Soderbergh made the original trilogy, but when the ensemble cast clicks as well as this one and the actors are this instantly likable, that’s only a small issue.
6 Infamous (73%)
There have been plenty of cases of movies with the same premise being released in the same year (two animated adventures about ants, two disaster movies about asteroids heading for Earth etc.), but one of the weirdest examples is when two Truman Capote biopics were released in the same timeframe.
In Capote, Philip Seymour Hoffman played the titular Breakfast at Tiffany’s author and Catherine Keener played his best friend, fellow author Harper Lee. In Infamous, Toby Jones played Capote and Sandra Bullock played Lee. The former film fared better at the box office, but the latter still has some merit.
5 Crash (74%)
This study of racial tensions in Los Angeles is one of the most controversial Best Picture winners of all time – with many critics feeling that Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain was more deserving of the award – but this has led to it being unjustly maligned. Just because it’s not as good (or as subtle – nowhere near as subtle) as Brokeback Mountain, that doesn’t mean it’s a bad movie.
There are some scenes that border on cheesy and some lines of dialogue that are on-the-nose, but on the whole, it has a strong message and a riveting cast full of talented names.
4 The Prince of Egypt (79%)
As a part of Jeffrey Katzenberg’s early efforts to compete with Disney, DreamWorks Animation produced The Prince of Egypt, an animated musical adaptation of the Book of Exodus with an Oscar-winning song performed by Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey.
Like Disney’s own cartoon hits from the same era, this one has a voice cast rammed with A-list talent: Michelle Pfeiffer, Ralph Fiennes, Val Kilmer (who was top-tier talent back then), Jeff Goldblum, Helen Mirren, and of course, Sandra Bullock. It’s a spectacular musical, with the great Stephen Schwartz providing the songs, and it’s also a visually stunning work of animation.
3 While You Were Sleeping (81%)
Surprisingly, one of Sandra Bullock’s highest-rated movies on Rotten Tomatoes is a romantic comedy. While You Were Sleeping is a mid-‘90s hit about a woman who saves a guy’s life and then falls in love with his brother. This sounds like a haphazardly hashed-out premise that would be wrought with clichés, but it is, unexpectedly, a good movie.
Bullock stars alongside Bill Pullman, and they both give performances that are charming enough – and have chemistry that is fun enough – to save this movie from its own overuse of tropes. It was nominated by the American Film Institute to be included on their definitive ranking of Hollywood’s 100 greatest love stories, but it didn’t make the cut.
2 Speed (94%)
What could’ve been just another Die Hard rip-off was elevated to an all-time action movie classic when Keanu Reeves worked to make his character Jack Traven stand out more and Joss Whedon was brought aboard to punch up the script.
Speed is a terrific movie, with everything that makes a great actioner: a gripping premise (a bus is rigged with a bomb that will detonate if its speed drops below 50mph), a memorable villain (played by Dennis Hopper), glorious set pieces, a thrilling climax. As it turns out, the movie described as “Die Hard on a bus” has some real substance to it.
1 Gravity (96%)
Kicking off the trend of cerebral sci-fi masterpieces that would give us The Martian, Arrival, and Ex Machina, Gravity came along as a breath of fresh air in 2013. Crazily, Hollywood saw it as a risk to give a $100 budget to a movie about two characters drifting through space.
Just because aliens weren’t trying to destroy Earth and there were no superheroes to be seen, studio heads thought that audiences wouldn’t be interested. Of course, the incredible acting of George Clooney and especially Sandra Bullock anchor the movie with a real, relatable, emotional core that keeps you hooked beyond the astonishing visuals.