Nicolas Cage Reveals His Top 5 Nicolas Cage Movies

Nicolas Cage is an actor who must shoulder the unbearable weight of massive talent – but how does he rank his own movies? Cage appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert recently to promote his new Dracula satire film Renfield. While there, Colbert made Cage get in on the debate that so many movie fans are still having. So without further ado, this is how Nic Cage ranks his own movies: 

  1. Pig
  2. Mandy
  3. Bringing Out the Dead
  4. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans  
  5. Joe

There were, of course, plenty of honorable mentions from Colbert (on behalf of fans everywhere), including Raising Arizona, National Treasure, and Face/Off – the latter of which Cage admits is indeed a favorite of his, as well. 

(Photo: Universal Pictures)

"You know what's interesting about Face/Off... Face/Off was a big movie – a big studio movie – that I made at Paramount. And I was able to use what I learned from this little Vampire's Kiss movie and put it in this giant movie and it worked! And I was like 'People really dig this!' And so I was very happy with those results." 

To be fair, Nic Cage picked a Top 5 that don't exactly reflect the biggest box office bankings he's ever earned, so it's perfectly fine if you've never seen them. It also presents a fun opportunity for you to check them out, as they are also some of Cage's strongest performances. Check out the synopses of Nic Cages Top 5 films, below: 

PIG (directed by Michael Sarnoski) – With his only connection to the outside world lying in Portland businessman Amir, taciturn, meditative hermit Rob (Nic Cage) has found solace deep in the heart of the dense Oregon forests and the unique bond with his only companion: his beloved truffle-hunting pig. Tired of grappling with the profound sadness of prolonged grief, Rob relies on a simple daily routine to keep his sanity, self-respect, and dignity, utterly unaware that he has already caught unwanted attention. Now, his best friend is missing, and revenge can only make things worse. Indeed, strange as it sounds, inconsolable Rob only wants his pig back, and if he has to, he'll go to the edge of the world to find her. But first things first. Who has Rob's pig?

Mandy (directed by Panos Cosmatos) – Taking place in 1983, Red (Cage) is a lumberjack who lives in a secluded cabin in the woods. His artist girlfriend Mandy spends her days reading fantasy paperbacks. Then one day, she catches the eye of a crazed cult leader, who conjures a group of motorcycle-riding demons to kidnap her. Red, armed with a crossbow and custom Axe, stops at nothing to get her back, leaving a bloody, brutal pile of bodies in his wake.

Bringing Out the Dead (directed by Martin Scorsese) – An Easter story. Frank (Cage) is a Manhattan medic, working graveyard in a two-man ambulance team. He's burned out, exhausted, seeing ghosts, especially a young woman he failed to save six months' before, and no longer able to save people: he brings in the dead. We follow him for three nights, each with a different partner: Larry, who thinks about dinner, Marcus, who looks to Jesus, and Tom, who wallops people when work is slow. Frank befriends the daughter of a heart victim he brings in; she's Mary, an ex-junkie, angry at her father but now hoping he'll live. Frank tries to get fired, tries to quit, and keeps coming back, to work and to Mary, in need of his own rebirth.

Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (directed by Werner Herzog)  – After Katrina, police sergeant Terence McDonagh (Cage) rescues a prisoner, hurts his back in the process and earns a promotion to lieutenant plus an addiction to cocaine and painkillers. Six months later, a family is murdered over drugs; Terence runs the investigation. His drug-using prostitute girlfriend, his alcoholic father's dog, run-ins with two old women and a well-connected john, gambling losses, a nervous young witness, and thefts of police property put Terence's job and then his life in danger. He starts seeing things. He wants a big score to get out from under mounting debts, so he joins forces with drug dealers. The murders remain unsolved. A bad lieutenant gets worse.

Joe (directed by David Gordon Green) – In order to provide for his destitute family of drifters, a likable, sincere, able-bodied 15-year-old boy comes to hire on among a burned-out ex-con's (Cage) group of aging forest laborers. As the man becomes more and more aware of the boy's abusive home life, his deeply buried humanity is roused. Drinking and smoking incessantly to remain detached from his volatile temper, he finally takes the matter into his own hands – come what may – when the boy's alcoholic father finally goes too far.