Mads Mikkelsen’s career spans almost 25 years and is littered with commercial and independent success. The Danish actor started his career abroad before starting to work on Hollywood blockbusters such as Doctor Strange, Rogue One, and Clash of the Titans. He is best known for the television adaptation of Hannibalwhere Mikkelsen played the title character for three seasons.
Letterboxd is one of the most notable platforms for moviegoers to express their own opinions. The rating is therefore often the best way to display a fan score achieved only by the most dedicated and knowledgeable viewers. Most of Mikkelsen’s commercial successes were of a lower rating, so for a viewer looking to explore the actor’s career, sorting by Letterboxd rating offers a chance to quickly reach some of the most well-received films but also the lesser known of the actor.
ten A Royal Affair (3.6)
A royal affair is a Danish period play directed by Nikolaj Arcel, which American audiences may know best from The dark tower. The film stars Mikkelsen as well as actress Alicia Vikander. Not only does it hold a hard-earned 3.6 on Letterboxd, but the film also sports a 90% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The romantic drama centers around the character of Vikander, who is about to marry King Christian VII, when she meets his doctor, played by Mikkelsen. The romance between them sparks a nationwide rebellion, but it’s Mikkelsen’s charisma that really sells the film.
9 After marriage (3.7)
Directed by Susanne Bier, who is best known for bird box, After marriage is a Danish independent film centered on a family drama. The movie is best viewed by going into it without too much context, as it’s filled with twists and turns and unique character development.
Another example of Mikkelsen’s work in Danish cinema, After marriage is known for being unpredictable and very tense, with strong existential themes. It has been described as melodramatic, but also honest and realistic, with Mads delivering a subtle yet powerful performance.
8 At the gates of eternity (3.7)
Mads Mikkelsen plays a supporting role in Vincent Van Gogh’s 2018 biopic starring Willem Dafoe. At the door of eternity is directed by Julian Schnabel, who also directed the artist’s biopic Basquiat. Like a piece of Van Gogh artwork, the film’s strongest elements are its visuals and cinematography.
Mikkelsen’s performance in the film is hailed, as it is Dafoe who is the centerpiece of it, with many fans suggesting it should have been an Oscar-winning performance for him. The film is also considered one of Dafoe’s most eccentric characters.
7 Flashing lights (3.7)
twinkling lights It was Mads Mikkelsen’s first time working with longtime collaborator director Anders Thomas Jensen. The film starts out as a detective flick but ends up being a weird dark comedy about family and friendship.
The characters in the film are very quirky, forming a sort of “fish out of water” story about criminals trying to transition into the normal lifestyle they don’t yet understand. Like many crime stories early in Mads’ career, twinkling lights has some very violent scenes, so viewers beware.
6 Adam’s apples (3.8)
This is yet another collaboration from the same director of twinkling lightsso fans of this movie should definitely check it out Adam’s apples. It’s not as comedic as the first one, but it still has a sense of absurdity and weirdness that some may find comical.
Mikkelsen plays a priest in a small religious community that experiences a conflict with a former neo-Nazi, played by famous Danish actor Ulrich Thomsen, who is sent after a prison sentence to spend time in his community.
5 Pusher II (3.8)
the Pusher trilogy is highly regarded by fans of foreign films, and they are known as director Nicolas Winding Refn’s early works before he achieved international success with films such as To drive. The first one Pusher the film centers on the character of Kim Bodnia, while its sequel centers on Mikkelsen.
Mads’ increased screen time and focus on the story could be the reason for the surge in fanbase, as his devoted fan base is part of why Refn’s older works have received so much attention from international audiences.
4 Horsemen of Justice (3.8)
The fifth film in Mikkelsen’s partnership with director Anders Thomas Jensen is horsemen of justice. Although it’s one of the most action-packed movies on this list, horsemen of justice is far from being a simple action movie as the cover might suggest.
Mads Mikkelsen has earned massive public respect for directing both Hollywood blockbusters as well as smaller films in Denmark, horsemen of justice being one of the most recent examples. It has something for everyone, with great action and a great story.
3 Casino Royale (3.9)
Mads Mikkelsen may have been born to play a Bond villain. In the Daniel Craig saga, Casino Royale is arguably the strongest film, and of course, part of that is due to Mikkelsen’s performance gem. The poker scene is one of the most intense scenes in the entire series.
It’s no surprise that this film is so highly rated, and also the only one of Mikkelsen’s major box office films to earn such positivity from fans. Casino Royale is a mainstay of the 007 franchise and action films in general, and it is also considered one of the most moving James Bond films.
2 Another Round (4.0)
fans of another round were so dedicated to the film after its release that there was an uproar when Hollywood announced a Leonardo DiCaprio-directed adaptation of the story. Hollywood frequently adapts international stories, which often lack the success of the originals.
The foreign version stars Mikkelsen, and many viewers felt a strong connection to his story. another round is the type of film that allows its viewers to take a new and unusual perspective, especially of movie watching.
1 Hunting (4.2)
The second big hit on this list in the partnership of Mads Mikkelsen and Thomas Vinterberg, like years before another roundthe two paired to create The hunt. Once again, Mikkelsen plays a teacher faced with an abnormal situation.
The story of the film is maddening, and even more so when you know that it is based on a true story. Many Mikkelsen fans from Hannibal joked that this could be the origin story of the infamous Hannibal Lecter.
NEXT: Mads Mikkelsen’s 5 Best English Films (& 5 Worst), According To Rotten Tomatoes
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