Jared Leto: 10 Films You Need to See

As we approach the theatrical and streaming debut of Jared Leto's "The Little Things," we're highlighting his 10 films you need to see.

By Jesse Conner

Jared Leto in "Mr. Nobody."

© Magnolia Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

So many great films are starting to come back to theaters as well as debuting on streaming. The one to look out for this week is "The Little Things."

Coming to theaters and HBO Max simultaneously, the police thriller includes Oscar-winning actors Rami Malek, Denzel Washington, and Jared Leto.

We saw the stunning trailer debut just a few days before Christmas, and have been excited ever since.

We're amped for it, and especially looking forward to Jared Leto's character. To celebrate, we're recapping his top 10 films so far, so you can see how versatile this talented actor truly is.

  • 1

    /

    Dallas Buyers Club

    © Focus Features/courtesy Everett Collection

    This film sits at the top our list because not only is it one of Jared Leto's highest-rated movies, but it's the one that earned him an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Leto's made a lot of transformations for characters over the years, but his role as Rayon stands out amongst them. Beyond his heartfelt performance, the actor was required to lose a whopping 30 pounds, along with sporting some truly memorable outfits.

    Now streaming on: Peacock, Showtime, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    Dallas Buyers Club

    Drama / 2013

    In mid-1980s Texas, electrician Ron Woodroof (Matthew McConaughey) is stunned to learn that he has AIDS. Though told that he has just 30 days left to live, Woodroof refuses to give in to despair. He seeks out alternative therapies and smuggles unapproved drugs into the U.S. from wherever he can find them. Woodroof joins forces with a fellow AIDS patient (Jared Leto) and begins selling the treatments to the growing number of people who can't wait for the medical establishment to save them.

  • 2

    /

    Blade Runner 2049

    © Warner Bros. /Courtesy Everett Collection

    If you want to see Leto's more sinister side, this film's happy to oblige. Leto plays Niander Wallace, the movie's blind antagonist. Interestingly, while Leto was playing the character, he opted for opaque contact lenses, which made it so he couldn't see while filming. He claims he never saw his co-star/childhood hero Harrison Ford while filming, even though they shared multiple scenes together.

    Now streaming on: Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    Blade Runner 2049

    Thriller / 2017

    Officer K (Ryan Gosling), a new blade runner for the Los Angeles Police Department, unearths a long-buried secret that has the potential to plunge what's left of society into chaos. His discovery leads him on a quest to find Rick Deckard (Harrison Ford), a former blade runner who's been missing for 30 years.

  • 3

    /

    Fight Club

    © 20th Century Fox Film Corp./courtesy Everett Collection

    Although Leto's involvement in this cult classic wasn't as prominent as lead actors Brad Pitt and Edward Norton, the bleached-hair prettyboy was still a member of the fight club, and had a nasty initiation with Norton who ends up disfiguring his character quite a bit.

    Now streaming on: Tubi, Philo, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    Fight Club

    Thriller / 1999

    A depressed man (Edward Norton) suffering from insomnia meets a strange soap salesman named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) and soon finds himself living in his squalid house after his perfect apartment is destroyed. The two bored men form an underground club with strict rules and fight other men who are fed up with their mundane lives. Their perfect partnership frays when Marla (Helena Bonham Carter), a fellow support group crasher, attracts Tyler's attention.

  • 4

    /

    Requiem for a Dream

    © Artisan Entertainment/Courtesy Everett Collection

    Here's another movie that required Leto to lose weight, this time closer to 25 pounds. Also, the director didn't want him to have sugar or sex for 30 days in order to understand how it feels have a massive craving. In the film, he plays a heroin addict named Harry Goldfarb. In preparation, he made friends with actual heroin addicts from Brooklyn to better understand their mindset.

    Now streaming on: Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    Requiem for a Dream

    Drama / 2000

    Imaginatively evoking the inner landscape of human beings longing to connect, to love and feel loved, the film is a parable of happiness gloriously found and tragically lost. "Requiem for a Dream" tells parallel stories that are linked by the relationship between the lonely, widowed Sara Goldfarb and her sweet but aimless son, Harry. The plump Sara, galvanized by the prospect of appearing on a TV game show, has started on a dangerous diet regimen to beautify herself for a national audience.

  • 5

    /

    The Thin Red Line

    © 20th Century Fox Film Corp./courtesy Everett Collection

    He isn't a big part (at all) of this war story, but Leto certainly takes charge when it's his time to shine. Even with the minor role, Leto contributes to a film that ranks high on critics' lists.

    Now streaming on: STARZ, Philo, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    The Thin Red Line

    War / 1998

    In 1942, Private Witt (Jim Caviezel) is a U.S. Army absconder living peacefully with the locals of a small South Pacific island. Discovered by his commanding officer, Sgt. Welsh (Sean Penn), Witt is forced to resume his active duty training for the Battle of Guadalcanal. As Witt and his unit land on the island, and the American troops mount an assault on entrenched Japanese positions, the story explores their various fates and attitudes towards life-or-death situations.

  • 6

    /

    American Psycho

    © Lions Gate / Courtesy Everett Collection

    When you see the character Leto portrays in "American Psycho," you'll probably have the urge to kill him, too. Leto plays Paul Allen, an egotistical VP of a company involved in mergers and acquisitions, who gets on the nerves of Christian Bale's Patrick Bateman, a professional by day and serial killer by night.

    Now streaming on: Peacock, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    American Psycho

    Horror / 2000

    In New York City in 1987, a handsome, young urban professional, Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale), lives a second life as a gruesome serial killer by night. The cast is filled by the detective (Willem Dafoe), the fiance (Reese Witherspoon), the mistress (Samantha Mathis), the coworker (Jared Leto), and the secretary (Chloë Sevigny). This is a biting, wry comedy examining the elements that make a man a monster.

  • 7

    /

    Panic Room

    © Columbia/courtesy Everett Collection

    When the home you're staying at has a safe room, there's probably a reason why. Leto shows off his darker side once more, but this time he's more of a burglar than a murderer. Leto actually did all of his own stunts in the film, even in a scene where he catches on fire.

    Now streaming on: STARZ, Philo, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    Panic Room

    Thriller / 2002

    Trapped in their New York brownstone's panic room, a hidden chamber built as a sanctuary in the event of break-ins, newly divorced Meg Altman (Jodie Foster) and her young daughter Sarah (Kristen Stewart) play a deadly game of cat-and-mouse with three intruders - Burnham (Forest Whitaker), Raoul (Dwight Yoakam) and Junior (Jared Leto) - during a brutal home invasion. But the room itself is the focal point because what the intruders really want is inside it.

  • 8

    /

    Mr. Nobody

    © Magnolia Pictures/Courtesy Everett Collection

    This sci-fi drama has Leto playing an old man looking back on his life, trying to determine which events in his "memory" have actually happened in real life. Because of a tough decision his character had to make as a child, he remembers/imagines multiple events that couldn't all possibly exist together, which leads him to try to decipher what's fact and what's fiction.

    Now streaming on: Tubi, Crackle, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    Mr. Nobody

    Drama / 2009

    In 2092 the last mortal human (Jared Leto) on Earth reflects on his long past and thinks about the lives he might have led.

  • 9

    /

    Lord of War

    © Lions Gate / Courtesy Everett Collection

    Standing out as one of Leto's more moral characters, Vitaly Orlov is the brother and business partner of a well-traveled arms dealer (Nicolas Cage). Vitaly has trouble finding peace due to the truth that by selling weapons to warlords, they're adding to the body count of innocents caught in the crossfire.

    Now streaming on: YouTube, Tubi, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, & VUDU

    Lord of War

    Action / 2005

    The 20-year arms dealing career of Queens, N.Y., outcast Yuri Orlov (Nicolas Cage) serves as a window onto the end of the Cold War and the emergence of worldwide terrorism. He finds himself reassuring his more ethically challenged younger brother, Vitaly (Jared Leto), while adeptly sidestepping the pursuit of federal agent Jack Lawrence (Ethan Hawke). The globetrotting arms dealer also pursues the woman of his dreams, supermodel Ava Fontaine (Bridget Moynahan).

  • 10

    /

    How to Make an American Quilt

    © Universal Pictures/courtesy Everett Collection

    Ringing in at number 10 on the list, this film was actually Leto's big screen debut. His character is pretty minor in the movie, but he did catch audiences' attention as a newcomer to look out for.

    Now streaming on: HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, iTunes, Google Play, YouTube, & VUDU

    How to Make an American Quilt

    Drama / 1995

    Soon-to-be-wed graduate student Finn Dodd (Winona Ryder) develops cold feet when she suspects her fiancé is cheating on her. In order to clear her head, Finn visits her grandmother, Hy (Ellen Burstyn), and great aunt, Glady Joe Cleary (Anne Bancroft), in Grasse, Calif. There, Finn learns that Hy and Glady Joe are members of a group of passionate quilters, and over the course of her visit she is regaled with tales of love and life by women who have collected rich experiences and much wisdom.

Advertisement