Top Ten Greatest Performances of All-Time (Joey Magidson)

8. Mickey Rourke as Randy ‘The Ram’ Robinson in The Wrestler
Randy ‘The Ram’ Robinson: I just want to tell you, I’m the one who was supposed to take care of everything. I’m the one who was supposed to make everything okay for everybody. It just didn’t work out like that. And I left. I left you. You never did anything wrong. I used to try to forget about you. I used to try to pretend that you didn’t exist, but I can’t. You’re my girl. You’re my little girl. And now, I’m an old broken down piece of meat… and I’m alone. And I deserve to be all alone. I just don’t want you to hate me.

It’s so rare that you get such a perfect match of person and part, but when you do, the result is something special. That’s never been truer for me than here with Rourke. The sheer look of the man tells you so much, but it’s what’s in his soul that pours out on the screen…that’s what wrecks you. Particularly his confession scene, that’s Rourke ripping out his heart and showing it to us, the audience. It’s impossible not to shed a tear during that moment. I do wonder if this would be more regularly cited as an all time performance has Rourke been able to beat Sean Penn for the Oscar, but regardless of that, he’s always a lock for my personal list.