For decades, Jim Carrey seemed like an unstoppable force at the box office. He made countless hits not just in comedy, but across all genres, proving that he had what it took to overcome the typecasting of his standup and In Living Color days.
One of his trademarks is that he seemed to give his all in absolutely every role. It didn’t matter if it was a children’s film, or a surrealist romance about heartbreak. Many of his movies became instant classics, and deserve recognition for generations, even if Carrey himself has arguably lost his marbles in recent years.
10) How The Grinch Stole Christmas
It’s hard to imagine anybody that could have taken on the role of Ron Howard’s live action Grinch after Jim Carrey starred in it. Between the costume, makeup, and creepy contact lenses, Carrey completely lost himself in the character, and embodied everything the Grinch stands for.
The film itself was perhaps a bit too long, but the story of the Grinch wasn’t nearly as important as Carrey’s performance of the character. There were so many lines that became iconic with just his voice alone, that it will always remain a Christmas favorite.
9) Sonic the Hedgehog
Dr. Robotnik is a classic Sonic villain with a very peculiar appearance, none of which Jim Carrey represents. Yet, when he starred as the villain, Carrey still gave his all to the role, and was a complete standout.
Even in the sequel, when Carrey started wearing Robotnik’s iconic mustache, the character still remained a force on the screen. Jim Carrey has recently announced his retirement, so it’s unclear if he will return to complete the trilogy. However, fans will probably rally for him to come back.
8) The Cable Guy
The Cable Guy was a bizarre movie that didn’t quite land where it wanted to when it first came out. Jim Carrey made a string of successful comedies, so that was largely how the film was marketed as. Unfortunately, it was kind of something else entirely.
While comedy is certainly a factor in the film, there was a lot more going on. Jim Carrey played a creepily obsessed cable guy that couldn’t leave Matthew Broderick’s character alone. There are even elements of horror in the film, but it has since grown a cult following to become a staple in Jim Carrey’s library.
7) Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind
While Jim Carrey is primarily known as a comedy actor, he actually has quite a few serious dramatic roles and even ones in horror. Of those, Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind might be the biggest fan favorite.
It’s a bizarre Michael Gondry directed film about a man who wants to erase all memories of his ex-girlfriend. Carrey plays a hopeless romantic in this surrealist, cerebral adventure with an equally brilliant performance from Kate Winslet, opposite him.
6) Man On The Moon
Man on the Moon was as great a film off the screen, as it was on the screen. Jim Carrey was notorious for completely embodying the notorious and conflicting Andy Kaufman so much that he never left character.
In fact, a full documentary about Jim Carrey’s performance during this time was also released. However, the film itself shouldn’t be discounted for being incredibly funny, as well as a great send-off to a fabulous entertainer.
5) Liar Liar
Jim Carrey is just good at making straightforward comedies. His physical comedy, as well as his delivery of dialogue is spot on. Not every film has to have wild and crazy characters; sometimes a good script is all he needs.
That’s what Liar Liar is. It’s a heartfelt story about a lawyer unable to lie for a single day. The premise is unique, and Jim Carrey does an unbelievable job of heightening the comedic elements in every single scene.
4) The Truman Show
The Truman Show is a bit difficult to classify. It’s certainly funny, but it’s not necessarily a comedy. It has just as strong philosophical undertones as it does dramatic ones, many of which would turn out to be foreshadowing for the political and social cues of the modern age.
The story is about a single man whose entire life is depicted through a television show. The premise alone can have philosophers debating its relevancy for days, and Jim Carrey does an incredible job of portraying a man in the center of it all.
3) The Mask
The Mask is based on a comic book that is much darker than this film depiction. Nowadays, a light-hearted version of a dark comic book would be ridiculed. For The Mask, it made for an absolutely unforgettable film.
The Mask offered an opportunity for Jim Carrey to go all out in a completely ridiculous role. That is absolutely his specialty, and it’s hard to think of film he does a better job of it in than this one.
2) Dumb And Dumber
Arguably one of the most quotable of all of Jim Carrey’s movies might also be the dumbest, which isn’t that surprising, given the title. It’s hard to figure out who is the star, as he and Jeff Daniels equally share the spotlight.
What makes the movie so special is a culmination of great factors. Besides amazing performances from its brilliant comedic cast, the film also has such a ridiculous plot that it’s hard not to fall in love with the absurdity.
1) Ace Ventura
After a lifetime of unbelievable roles, it’s hard to think of any that have become synonymous with Jim Carrey more than Ace Ventura. It was his first truly breakout role and the film remains just as funny today as it did when it was released.
Fans of the character can recite line after line of Ventura’s unabashedly arrogant demeanor. However, it wasn’t just the character alone that made the film great. It also came with a very entertaining plot, and great performances from its supporting cast.