Viggo Mortensen Movies
Viggo Mortensen has been a working professional actor for 20 years, appearing in over 40 productions. In some of the smaller roles you need to be quick to catch him, and not all of the films have met critical acclaim. Mortensen, however, is known for investing a full effort into each of his roles, from military men (Crimson Tide, G.I. Jane) to seductive home-wreckers (Walk on the Moon, Perfect Murder), from the devil himself (Prophecy) to the heroic King of Kings (Lord of the Rings). Mortensen says, "An actor ought to defend every character he plays as a mother bear does her cubs -- I never became a character I didn't like, regardless of the final result."
On this page I've listed the films in which he had the most prominent or notable roles. Follow the link for each movie to a page of reviews, photographs, downloads, interviews and other resources. At the bottom of this page you'll find links to complete filmographies.
Appaloosa (2008) - Release fall 2008 - The western town of Appaloosa, terrorized by a rancher and his thugs, hires Virgil Cole (Ed Harris) and his sidekick Everett Hitch (Viggo Mortensen) to establish law and order. A lovely widow sets her sights on Cole, complicating the men's job and testing their partnership. MCAA Rating: R for some violence and language.
Good (2008) - Showing in select theaters - Good is one man's journey during the Nazi regime set against his chaotic private life. Based on the play by CP Taylor, Good forces us the question the nature of humanity and whether in such circumstances a person can remain good. MCAA Rating: unknown.
Eastern Promises (2007) - The story of Anna (Naomi Watts), a London hospital's midwife, who witnesses the death of a young girl in giving birth on Christmas Eve and decides to search for the girl's family and identity. The search leads Anna into the core of a dangerous underground sex-trafficking business operated by London's Russian crime circle, including Nikolai (Viggo Mortensen). MCAA Rating: R for strong brutal and bloody violence, some graphic sexuality, language and nudity.
A History of Violence (2005) - Tom McKenna (Viggo Mortensen) is a quiet family man living and working in a small town. However, when he performs an act of heroism and is splashed all over the national press, some highly dodgy people suspect that he is a former colleague who disappeared underground years ago. MCAA Rating: R for strong brutal violence, graphic sexuality, nudity, language and some drug use..
Hidalgo (2004) - An old-fashioned tale of adventure and courage, this film pits a down-on-his-luck cowboy (Viggo Mortensen) and his unpedigreed mustang, Hidalgo, against a hostile desert environment, the purest-blooded Arabian racehorses, and their riders, some of whom are determined to win at any cost. MCAA Rating: PG-13 for adventure violence and some mild innuendo.
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) - This movie is the final of three which make up The Lord of the Rings. Frodo and Sam continue their journey to Mount Doom to destroy the One Ring, threatened by Gollum, orcs and the nasty Shelob. The other members of the fellowship continue to rally the forces of Rohan and Gondor to fight the final battles for Middle Earth. MCAA Rating: PG-13 for intense epic battle scenes and frightening images.
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) - This movie is the second of three which make up The Lord of the Rings. The fellowship has been split. Frodo and Sam continue to Mordor to destroy the One Ring in the fires of Mt. Doom, with Gollum as guide and nemesis. Meanwhile Merry and Pippin are in the hands of the evil Orcs. Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli follow the Orcs' trail in hopes of rescuing their comrades, and work with the peoples of Rohan to fight their common enemy. MCAA Rating: PG-13 for epic battle sequences and some scary images.
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) - This movie is the first of three which make up The Lord of the Rings. An ancient ring of power, lost for centuries, has ended up in the hands of a Hobbit named Frodo. When the Wizard Gandalf discovers the Ring is in fact the One Ring of the Dark Lord Sauron, he and leaders of the Elven, Human and Dwarf races agree that the One Ring must be carried to Mt. Doom, the volcano in which it was forged, and be destroyed.
28 Days (2000) - Sandra Bullock stars as a woman in rehab struggling with substance abuse. Viggo Mortensen has a supporting role as a professional baseball player and fellow patient. MCAA Rating: PG-13 for mature thematic elements involving substance abuse, language and some sensuality.
Walk on the Moon (1999) - Set in 1969, the "summer of love", in upstate New York. Pearl Kantrowitz (Lane) is a married woman in her early 30s who is feeling stuck. With her husband away, she indulges her attraction to the "blouse man" Walker Jerome (Viggo Mortensen). She experiences wonderful new things, including making love under a waterfall and a day at Woodstock, but of course her actions threaten not only her marriage but the welfare of her two children. MCAA Rating: R for sexuality, language and some drug use.
A Perfect Murder (1998) - The husband (Michael Douglas) is a currency trader whose portfolio value is shrinking disasterously. The wife (Gwyneth Paltrow) is the heiress to a $100 million fortune. The marriage is not a happy one, but the promise of long-term affluence keeps them together. The wife pursues an affair with an artist (Viggo Mortensen) who gives her all the passion she doesn't get at home. The husband decides that his wife is worth more dead than alive. MCAA Rating: R for violence, sexuality and language.
Psycho (1998) - This color remake of Alfred Hitchcock's 1960 black and white classic closely follows the plot of the original. Marion Crane is killed in the shower of the Bates Motel, and Normal Bates is acting very suspicious. Viggo plays Crane's boyfriend. MCAA Rating: R for violence and sexuality/nudity.
G.I. Jane (1997) - Lt. O'Neil (Moore) has been recruited as the first female SEAL trainee through a series of backroom political maneuvers, and must prove her military staying power against formidable odds. Not the least of these is the tyrannical Master Chief Urgayle (Viggo Mortensen) whose job is to put the recruits through hell to ensure that those who finish the program are tough and well-prepared enough to succeed when they face real-world challenges. MCAA Rating: R for language and violent fight scenes.
La pistola de mi hermano (1997) - A black comedy about a directionless young man who, for kicks, commits various felonies as he is barely able to articulate to anyone, the emptiness of his life--that is, until he meets the girl of his dreams, a suicidal loner with whom he runs from the law. (Spanish language) MCAA Rating: Spain: 18.
Vanishing Point (1997) - When his wife goes into a troubled labor while he is on the road over 1200 miles away James Kowalski, an ex race car driver and a former Army Ranger, attempts to elude police while trying to get home. After numerous chases he turns into a Native American reservation and reflects on his life, and his wife. He then heads off to break through an impenetrable police and FBI roadblock. MCAA Rating: Not rated, probably would be PG-13.
Albino Alligator (1996) - A crime thriller starring Matt Dillon, Gary Sinise, and William Fichtner as three small-time robbers who are on the run from the police. They take cover in a bar, holding the patrons (one of whom is the mysterious Guy Foucard) hostage. MCAA Rating: R for strong violence and language.
Daylight (1996) - Compulsive rescuer Kit Latura (Sylvester Stallone) goes into the Holland Tunnel after after a fiery explosion has trapped people inside, and leads survivors to safety. Roy Nord (Viggo) is an arrogant adventure gear spokeperson who believes he can do a better job of the rescue and sets off in a different direction. MCAA Rating: PG-13 for disaster-related peril, death and destruction.
Passion of Darkly Noon (1996) - Dark, sensuous drama about an orphaned teenager Darkly Noon (Fraser), from a strictly religious family. Darkly is lost in the woods and ends up in the home of beautiful Callie (Judd) and deaf-mute Clay (Mortensen). As Callie nurses him back to health, he becomes obsessed with her and sinks into madness and violence. MCAA Rating: Not rated, but assume R.
The Portrait of a Lady (1996) - Headstrong American heiress, Isabel Archer (Kidman), travels to England. She tactfully rebuffs the advances of Caspar Goodwood (Mortensen), another American who has followed her there, and likewise rejects the proposal of a decent, sensible English suitor, Lord Warburton (Richard E. Grant), because she wants to find her own destiny and identity first. Instead, she is seduced by Gilbert Osmond (Malkovich), an effete collector of art (and women) whom one character describes as a "sterile dilettante." The film explores how Isabel's life, and the lives of those who love her, are affected by this fateful decision. MCAA Rating: PG-13 for mature sensuality and some brief nudity.
Crimson Tide (1995) - A tense submarine thriller reminiscent of Hunt for Red October, starring Hackman as the veteran captain and Washington as his well-educated XO. Viggo has a strong supporting role as the clean-cut weapons officer, Peter "Weps" Ince. When a message transmission is cut off, the officers on the USS Alabama must decide whether to launch nuclear missiles or wait for further orders. The Captain and XO reach different conclusions, and Weps is caught in the middle. MCAA Rating: R for strong language.
Gimlet (1995) - (in Spanish) Julia, a bartender in Barcelona, has lost her lover to a brutal murder. Now there has been another murder, and an anonymous man is sending her letters and video tapes saying that he loves her. Will the police catch the murderer before someone else dies? MCAA Rating: unknown.
The Prophecy (1995) - The angel Gabriel comes to Earth to collect a soul which will end the stalemated war in Heaven, and only a former priest and a little girl can stop him. MCAA Rating: R for violence and gore, and for some language.
Floundering (1994) - John Boyz (James LeGros) lives near Venice Beach. In the wake of the 1992 Los Angeles riots, he is "floundering," suffering from nightmares and uncertainty. His life is full of bizarre friends, sweaty sex, pistol-wielding gangsters, bungling bureaucrats, police fanatics, revolutionaries, and weirdos. MCAA Rating: R.
The Crew (1994) - Reluctantly Bill agrees to spend a weekend on his brother-in-law Phillip's boat in the Bahamas. But he and his wife are not the only invited passengers, and instead of a few relaxing days at sea Bill experiences something that shakes his whole existence. MCAA Rating: R.
American Yakuza (1993) - The Yakuza, Japanese mafia, are moving in to southern California. When Nick Davis (Mortensen) is released from prison, he finds work at a Yakuza-owned company, and through a series of adventures is accepted into the powerful Tendo crime family. There are many plot twists that I won't give away in the synopsis, see the review for more. MCAA Rating: R for violence (bloody fights, gun battles) and partial nudity.
Boiling Point (1993) - Red Diamond (Dennis Hopper) is a small-time con artist trying to make one final score so that he can retire. He teams up with Ronnie (Viggo Mortensen), a young dim-bulb hoodlum who manages to kill a secret service agent in the process. The agent's partner, Jimmy Mercer (Wesley Snipes) wants revenge and is allowed one week to try to catch the pair of killers. MCAA Rating: R.
Carlito's Way (1993) - Carlito Brigante (Al Pacino) has been released from prison on a technicality after serving five years of his thirty-year sentence. Formerly an Hispanic drug lord, he is determined to reform, but finds that his dream of going legitimate is undermined at every turn. Viggo Mortensen plays "Lalin," an old friend of Brigante's who has been crippled and is confined to a wheelchair. MCAA Rating: R.
Ruby Cairo/Deception (1993) - When Bessie Faro investigates the death of her husband Johnny in a plane crash in Mexico, she finds that his business is in the red and that he had been stashing large sums of money in bank accounts all over the world. As she begins systematically recovering her husband's money, she discovers that someone else has beaten her to some of the accounts. Aided by Fergus Lamb, who is somehow connected to Johnny, she goes to Cairo to find some answers. MCAA Rating: PG-13.
The Gospel According to Harry (1993) - Released in northern Europe as Ewangelia wedlug Harry'ego, this Polish film is described as "a biblical soap-opera whose action unfolds in the Californian desert." MCAA Rating: N/R.
Young Americans (1993) - Los Angeles police detective John Harris (Harvey Keitel) comes to London to assist Scotland Yard in tracking down a new villain in the underworld. He discovers the mastermind to be an old adversary, Carl Frazer (Viggo Mortensen). Frazer has been recruiting teenage street kids to do his dirty work. MCAA Rating: R for language & violence.
Indian Runner (1991) - This powerful and haunting story of two brothers was Sean Penn's directorial debut. The elder brother Joe (Morse) is a good, stable family man who deeply loves his charming and unpredictable younger brother Frank (Viggo). When Frank returns from Vietnam, his drinking and inability to control his violence drag him deeper and deeper into trouble, despite all his own efforts to make a life and Joe's efforts to rescue him. MCAA Rating: R for violence, sexual context, strong language and full frontal nudity (yes of Viggo but not in an erotic context.).
Reflecting Skin (1991) - Dark, dream-like dramatic thriller in which a young boy struggles with fantasies and difficult realities. Not for the faint of heart. MCAA Rating: R.
Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre III (1990) - A pair of California travelers encounter a cannibal family. Their only hope lies in a survivalist who happens to be in the neighborhood. Basic low-budget slasher film. MCAA Rating: R.
Fresh Horses (1988) - A Cincinnati college student breaks off his engagement to his wealthy fiancee after he falls in love with a backwoods Kentucky girl (Molly Ringwald) he meets at a party. She claims to be 20 years old, but he learns that she's actually just 16 and already married. Viggo Mortensen plays the low-life husband. MCAA Rating: PG-13.
Prison (1988) - A prison is haunted by the spirit of a former prisoner who wants revenge for being wrongfully executed. Viggo Mortensen plays "Burke," a car thief incarcerated in the prison. MCAA Rating: R for violence and profanity.
Salvation! (1987) - A troubled young woman (Exene Cervenka) hooks up with a money-crazed televangelist (Stephen McHattie) and becomes a rich, heavy-metal Christian rock star. MCAA Rating: R.
Witness (1985) - Harrison Ford stars as a Philadelpha detective trying to protect an Amish boy who witnessed a murder in this action-packed and suspenseful drama. Viggo Mortensen's role as a young Amish farmer is significant primarily because it was the first movie in which his scenes did not end up on the cutting room floor. MCAA Rating: R for violence.
Viggo Mortensen Filmographies
IMDb: Viggo Mortensen - The Internet Movie Database has a huge database of details on the over 40 films in which Viggo has had some credited part.
Obsession Viggo: Filmography - Features an entertaining tongue-in-cheek rating system based roughly on how much we see of Viggo in the film.
Rotten Tomatoes: Viggo Mortensen - Links to collections of reviews for most of Mortensen's films. The cumulative rating for the films in which he has appeared is a 63%, just above the threshold below which the tomato is rotten. This is primarily due to the 90+% earned by the three LOTR films, Witness, and Crimson Tide, as he has appeared in a number of rotten-rated gems. Leatherface (17%) and Daylight (23%) rank at the bottom of the heap.
The Films of Viggo Mortensen - Well-written reviews of most of Viggo Mortensen's films, plus stills and other information for some.
Where to Watch, Rent or Buy
dvd-rent-online.com: Viggo Mortensen on DVD - Provides links to rental companies that offer Viggo Mortensen's movies on DVD.
The Late Night TV Page - Interbridge offers a list of guests on upcoming late night television shows, such as David Letterman, and the Tonight Show. RSS feeds are available.
Viggo Mortensen TV Schedule - From TVNow, a schedule of Viggo's appearances in movies and other shows in the upcoming month. Check times against your local listings.