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Ryan Gosling Movies: Our 10 Favorite Films Starring the Talented Hunk, Ranked

He's more than "just Ken"

You may know him as Noah Calhoun in The Notebook (2004), Ken in the new Barbie movie (2023) or Sebastian in La La Land (2016), but there’s even more to Ryan Gosling and his movies than what meets the eye.

The 43-year-old Canadian actor, who got his start alongside names like Justin Timberlake and Christina Aguilera on The Mickey Mouse Club, felt most comfortable throughout his youth on the stage and the screen. Today, that interest has been cultivated into a successful career in some of the biggest blockbusters in Hollywood.

Here, get to know Ryan Gosling and read about some of our favorite movies he’s starred in over the years.

Ryan Gosling makes a name for himself

Ryan Gosling, 2001
Ryan Gosling, 2001Randall Michelson/WireImage/Getty Images

After his Mickey Mouse Club debut, he continued working in series such as Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Goosebumps, Breaker High and Young Hercules, until pursuing a different route with his acting.

His first foray into more serious roles were in films such as Remember the Titans (2000) and The Believer (2001). Film roles continued to come his way, but it wasn’t until his 2004 role in The Notebook, the film adaptation of the Nicholas Sparks novel, that launched him onto people’s radar.

The Notebook and beyond

Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams, 2005
Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams, 2005Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage/Getty Images

His 2004 role as Noah Calhoun in the beloved romance film allowed people to see him in a new light — that of a romantic lead. After the film, he had roles in movies such as Stay (2005) alongside Naomi Watts and Ewan McGregor, Half Nelson (2006) and Lars and the Real Girl (2007), before taking a few years off from acting until 2010.

2010 marks a new decade for Ryan Gosling

After his hiatus, Gosling returned to the screen with a new zest. Blue Valentine (2010), All Good Things (2010) and Drive (2011) were films that marked his revival. In 2011, he starred alongside Steve Carell and Emma Stone in Crazy, Stupid, Love, in which he plays a charismatic ladies man who mentors Steve Carell, a man who recently separated from his wife and needs guidance as he embarks on his new life as a bachelor.

He later starred alongside Philip Seymour Hoffman and Paul Giamatti in The Ides of March (2011), and earned a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Drama. He then led in The Place Beyond the Pines (2012), alongside his longtime partner Eva Mendes.

2015 to present day

In 2015, Gosling starred in the Oscar nominated film, The Big Short. A year later, in 2016, his role in Damien Chazelle’s La La Land earned him the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Motion Picture Musical or Comedy, as well as an Academy Award nomination. In 2017 came his role alongside Harrison Ford in Blade Runner 2049 and in 2018, the lead role in First Man, the Neil Armstrong biopic.

Related: Young Harrison Ford: Amazing Throw-Back Photos that You Have to See to Believe

Ryan Gosling attends the Barbie European premiere, 2023
Ryan Gosling attends the Barbie European premiere, 2023Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images

Gosling then took another break from acting before his 2022 role in the Gray Man and finally, his most recently revered role as Ken in Greta Gerwig‘s Barbie. With a career that shows no signs of slowing down, take a look at some of our favorite Ryan Gosling movies from over the years.

Best Ryan Gosling movies, ranked

10. All Good Things (2010)

Ryan Gosling stars in All Good Things alongside Kirsten Dunst, as husband and wife who have an increasingly tumultuous relationship when Gosling’s character of David, the son of a successful real estate tycoon, leaves behind their quiet life in Vermont for a career in the big city working for his father. His wife’s eventual disappearance leaves viewers questioning.

9. Blue Valentine (2010)

A heartbreaking film about the rise and fall of a marriage between Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams, the story chronicles how the couple started out as a young duo full of adoration for one another and eventually, fell out of love with each other, their relationship tarnished by the pressures and struggles of real life.

8. Drive (2011)

Ryan Gosling stars alongside a star-studded cast in Drive as a mechanic, stunt driver and getaway driver. He gets to know his neighbor Irene (Carey Mulligan) and her young son Benicio, and when Irene’s husband is released from prison, he is in need of protection money from his prison stint or his family will be in danger. Aiding in the heist for the sake of Irene and her son, things go south for The Driver, and he must do all he can to protect both himself and the people he cares about.

7. The Place Beyond the Pines (2012)

Ryan Gosling stars as a motorcycle stunt rider turned bank robber who reconnects with his ex (Eva Mendes) and aims to provide for she and their son. His new endeavor puts him on a dangerous path, right in the sights of an ambitious young cop, played by Bradley Cooper.

6. The Big Short (2015)

The Big Short tells the story of a group of investors who bet against the United States mortgage market leading up to the housing market crash of 2007. Starring Christian Bale, Steve Carell, Ryan Gosling and Brad Pitt, the film won an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay.

5. Lars and the Real Girl (2007)

Ryan Gosling stars in Lars and the Real Girl as a man named Lars who struggles with his extreme shyness and inability to socialize and make friends. When he announces to his brother and sister-in-law that he’s met a woman on the internet, they’re shocked to discover that the woman he speaks of is a life-size plastic doll.

Their doctor urges them to go along with the delusion Lars has created, and before they know it, the entire neighborhood is doing the same. This movie tells a story of acceptance and compassion in one of Ryan Gosling’s most unique but beloved roles.

4. Crazy, Stupid, Love (2011)

Gosling shines in this romantic comedy alongside Steve Carell, Emma Stone and Julianne Moore. Carell stars as Cal, who learns his wife has cheated on him. Lost in the modern dating world, Cal meets Gosling’s character of Jacob, a smooth-talking womanizer, who takes him under his wing and teaches him his ways.

3. Barbie (2023)

One of the biggest and most highly anticipated movies of 2023, Gosling starred alongside Margot Robbie‘s Barbie as none other than Ken as they venture out of Barbie Land and into the real world.

2. La La Land (2016)

La La Land tells the story of Mia (Emma Stone) and Sebastian (Gosling), a couple who are drawn together as they both chase after their career ambitions. Mia wishes to be an actress while Sebastian wishes to open his own jazz club, and the two navigate their relationship while simultaneously putting in the work to achieve their dreams.

1. The Notebook (2004)

Ryan Gosling stars in one of the most revered romance movies of all time, and takes on the romantic lead as Noah Calhoun, a humble lumber mill worker who falls for the upper class Allie Hamilton (Rachel McAdams). Allie’s parents are vehemently against their relationship and after she breaks things off with Noah in a fit of anger, she learns that she and her family will be leaving town promptly, before she is able to patch things up with Noah.

When Noah writes to Allie after her departure and never hears back, he gives up. The couple both go on with their individual lives without one another, until fate brings them back together again.

For more of your favorite actors, click through below!

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