movies & entertainment

Top 10 Movies Starring Sean Connery

Sheena Joseph | Nov 04 2020
Image credits: BP Creation

The world of cinema will never forget the loss of legendary actor Sean Connery who passed away on October 31. Despite being the first actor to play James Bond and set the bar, the beauty of his career has been not letting the Bond movies define him. The Scottish actor played James Bond for the first time in 'Dr. No' in 1962. He went on to reprise the role in 'From Russia with Love' (1963), 'Goldfinger' (1964), 'Thunderball' (1965), 'You Only Live Twice' (1967), 'Diamonds Are Forever' (1971), and 'Never Say Never Again' (1983).

He shed his spy persona and went on to do a variety of roles. He was loved for his versatility and enthusiasm. He worked with famed filmmakers like Alfred Hitchcock, John Huston, and Sidney Lumet. Here are some of his most loved films.

1) The Untouchables

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This 1987 film is based on a crime novel of the same name. Sean Connery played a veteran Irish-American officer, Jim Malone, who is fed up with the rampant corruption. He worked with director Brian De Palma and an ensemble cast of Robert De Niro, Kevin Costner, Andy Garcia, and Charles Martin Smith. The film grossed over USD 106 million worldwide. It was nominated for four Academy Awards. Sean Connery ended up winning the Oscar for Best Supporting Actor.

2) Highlander

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Highlander is one of those movies that received little success upon release. But ended up becoming a cult film over time. It inspired film sequels and television spin-offs. It is a fantasy action-adventure film based on a story by Gregory Widen. Sean Connery and other actors - Christopher Lambert, Clancy Brown, and Roxanne Hart played immortal warriors engaged in ages-old war. The line 'there can be only one' which has been reflected throughout pop culture was the tagline of 'Highlander'. 

3) Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade

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The third installment of the Indiana Jones franchise featured Sean Connery as Henry Jones Sr, the title character's father. He played a Holy Grail scholar who has been kidnapped by Nazis. His chemistry with Harrison Ford proved to be perfect for the comedic tone of the adventure film. Director Steven Spielberg wrote the role of Henry Jones Sr. by keeping Sean Connery in mind. He initially turned down the role as he is only 12 years older than Harrison Ford. However, Spielberg continued to alter the character to address Connery's concerns and pursue him. Spielberg believed that no one could play Indiana Jones's father as well as Sean Connery.

4) The Hunt for Red October

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'The Hunt for Red October' is another spy thriller in Sean Connery's career. It is the first installment in the 'Jack Ryan' franchise, based on the best-selling novel by Tom Clancy. While Alec Baldwin played the CIA intelligence analyst Jack Ryan, Sean Connery played Mark Ramius, rogue Soviet naval captain, and the commanding officer of Red October, a new Typhoon-class nuclear missile submarine. The story is set in the late cold war era. It ended up being the 6th top-grossing domestic film of the year and generated over $200 million worldwide.

5) Dragonheart

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Sean Connery gave his voice to Draco, the last remaining dragon in this fantasy adventure film. Director Rob Cohen wanted no one else for the role as the dragon's voice set the tone of its entire personality. Cohen had no one but Connery in mind for the role and called his voice "unique and recognizable". The movie also used Connery's expressions to animate Draco's facial expressions. Upon release, Dragonheart generated USD 115 million against its budget of USD 57 million and went on to become a cult classic in the years following its release.

6) The Rock

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This 1996 action thriller stars Sean Connery, Nicolas Cage, Ed Harris, William, Forsythe, and Michael Biehn. The plot revolves around a team of Pentagon assigned officials dealing with a terrorist attack. Sean Connery played SAS Captain John Patrick Mason. Despite receiving mixed reviews, the film earned USD 335 million against a production budget of USD 75 million.

7) The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

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It is a 2003 film based on the first volume of the comic book series by Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill. It starred Sean Connery, Naseeruddin Shah, Peta Wilson, Tony Curran, Stuart Townsend, Shane West, Jason Flemyng, and Richard Roxburgh. It was the final live-action film for Sean Connery who retired in 2006. This superhero film drew inspiration from the likes of Jule Verne, Bram Stoker, Herman Melville, And H.G Wells. Sean Connery played adventurer and hunter Allan Quatermain. The film earned over USD 179 million against its production budget of USD 48 million.

8) Five Days One Summer

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This 1982 romantic drama film is based on a short story called 'Maiden' by Kay Boyle. Connery played a middle-aged Scottish doctor who is on vacation in the Alps. Betsy Brantley and Lambert Wilson also play key characters in the movie. The movie was criticised for its dark themes and bitterness.

9) Finding Forrester

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This 2000 American drama revolves around Jamal Wallace, a black teenager attending a prestigious Manhattan private school. Sean Connery plays William Forrester, a writer the child befriends. The movie focuses on the teen coming to terms with his identity and refining talents. Connery has acknowledged that his role was inspired by real-life writer J.D. Salinger. Receiving positive reviews, the movie was considered to be one of the top ten films of the year. In 2009, it was placed at number 64 on the list of '100 best movies of the decade'.

10) Entrapment

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Entrapment is a heist movie starring Sean Connery and Catherine Zeta-Jones. Both playing undercover professional thieves trying to pull off a heist at the turn of the new millennium. The movie was praised for its stylish script and an intriguing plot. It was a box office success and earned over USD 87 million in the US and USD 212 million worldwide. Critics praised the elaborate caper sequences, accuracy of changing time zones, action which is not extreme violence, and clever plot.