Sandra Bullock's 13 Best Films Are Always Worth A Rewatch

by S. Atkinson
Warner Bros. Pictures

Lead actor in at least 90 percent of your favorite rom-coms. People's "Most Beautiful Woman" of 2015. Founder of the production company Fortis Films. If there was ever a time to watch the 13 best Sandra Bullock movies, it is now, my friend. The hotly-anticipated Ocean's Eight is just a few months away from dropping, and, given its female buddy movie premise, it would be the darkest possible timeline if Bullock — with her resume full of standout performances in buddy movies — didn't rule this film. This woman is a goddess, and, if you don't agree, you need to step off my lawn at the earliest possible opportunity.

I suspect we're due a Bullock resurgence. I mean, not that she's ever been away, but as of yet, the actor has never reached the national treasure status she deserves for her comedy chops. I, for one, am hoping that maybe Ocean's Eight just what her profile needs to be tipped over the edge. When you've got a few hundred hours, start digging through her back catalogue so that, when the inevitable Bullock renaissance arrives, you'll be prepped and primed.

"Oh yes," you'll say, smugly, "I know. She's wonderful isn't she? Her rom com beginnings always had cinema audiences duped as to her innate versatility as a performer." Your conversational partner will begin weeping, because they never realized their own ignorance. Trust me, it's going to be wonderful.


'Demolition Man'

In one of Bullock's earliest movies, she stars alongside Sylvester Stallone in this sci-fi/comedy/action mashup. While her part isn't exactly huge, the film itself is a fun watch, centering on a dystopian future where human behavior is rigidly controlled, and caffeine, alcohol, and swearing is banned.

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You know it, you love it, and, if you don't, please cancel all foreseeable plans to watch one of the best action films ever made on loop. Bullock stars as Annie Porter, one of the passengers onboard a bus that has been wired to explode if its speed drops below 50 mph. It's a nail-biting good time, and you'll find Keanu Reeves is also along for the ride (pun intended).

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'While You Were Sleeping'

No wonder America decided practically overnight that Sandra Bullock was the next Meg Ryan. Like Ryan, she does a great job of exuding girl-next-door cute and making a character who's a little close to scary (lonely woman who pretends to be her crush's fiancee when he falls into a coma) vaguely relatable. Also, bonus points that this film stars The O.C.'s hottest dad, Sandy Cohen, when he was younger.

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'The Net'

If you love retro portrayals of the internet, you need to watch this ASAP. Bullock stars as computer analyst Angela Bennett, who is, just like you, an unabashed internet addict who never hangs out with people IRL and who telecommutes to work. This doesn't work out so great for her when a mugger steals her purse and manages to erase her online identity, and practically nobody recognizes her because she's just been chilling on the interweb all the time. It's your worst nightmare, but it's funny because it's not happening to you.

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'A Time To Kill'

Worth your time, because it's a John Grisham novel adaptation that's bursting from the seams with A-list talent (Samuel L. Jackson, Kevin Spacey, Matthew McConaughey, Ashley Judd) and passion. Not every critic loved it, but who cares? Roger Ebert did, giving it three out of four stars, and he's the only critic who seems to be perennially on the money.

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'Miss Congeniality'

This action/rom-com mashup stars Bullock as FBI agent Gracie Hart, who goes undercover at a beauty pageant. As a consummate tomboy, Gracie must be tutored in the arts of femininity to be a convincing wannabe beauty queen, which gives this something of a My Fair Lady vibe.

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Bullock stars as To Kill A Mockingbird author Harper Lee in this biopic about Truman Capote.

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'Practical Magic'

Bullock is a witch, and '90s Nicole Kidman is a witch, and this film is magical. On top of that, the premise is absurd; sisters Sally and Gillian Owens suffer from a curse where every man they fall in love with meets an untimely death. Please watch this immediately.

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'The Proposal'

So, OK, it's not Citizen Kane. But it's required viewing, despite the somewhat horrible premise (Bullock's Canadian boss character bullying her employee into marrying her after her visa application gets rejected). As usual, Bullock manages the impossible: making unsympathetic characters lovable.

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'The Heat'

Bullock's an uptight FBI agent. Melissa McCarthy is a renegade Boston detective. They'll have to overcome their differences if they're ever to work together and get information on a drug lord, Simon Larkin.

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Bullock was nominated for a Best Actress Oscar for her performance as an astronaut who is trapped in space after her space shuttle is destroyed. Both the technical side of the movie and the stunning performances (George Clooney plays the other astronaut) make it a must-see.

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'28 Days'

Bullock plays a chaotic, heavy drinking newspaper columnist, who is in denial about her alcohol problem. Somehow, despite the gravity of its focus, the film manages to be funny. Plus there are a ton of familiar faces: Steve Buscemi, Viggo Mortensen, and Dominic West.

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'Divine Secrets Of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood'

Penned by Thelma & Louise screenwriter Callie Khouri, the film's focus on a bunch of complex women isn't exactly surprising. Bullock plays a New York playwright who upsets her mother, Vivi, when she discusses Vivi's lack of mothering in an interview with Time magazine. Luckily, three of her mothers' friends come to the rescue to fix their troubled relationship. Maggie Smith also stars.

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Sandra Bullock is wonderful, and you didn't need me to tell you that. But. by rewatching her greatest movies, it's hard to deny her talent. She's the emotional heart of every film she's in, whether it's a sci-fi, an action flick, or a rom-com.