Being Brad Pitt

The man turns 52 today, but isn’t every day a birthday party when you’re Brad Pitt? Seriously.

What do you get the man who has everything? You don’t. In this case, you don’t give to Brad Pitt. You take.

Here is the trove of movies he’s done that we’re beyond partial to, with more than a few of these in our private stash. So let Angelina and the kids figure out Brad’s celebration. We’re here to acknowledge the gifts that Tyler Durden, Mickey O’Neil and Rusty Ryan, among others, have given us.

A River Runs Through It

Whether it’s the unrivaled beauty of Montana’s fly fishing and gorgeous landscape or the unrivaled beauty of Pitt himself, this 1992 film found its way into our collection chronicling Robert Redford’s portrayal of two brothers taking different life paths. Pitt’s happy-go-lucky character is meshed with a stubborn young man whose risk taking throughout the film keeps things moving and entertaining. The aforementioned Redford never disappoints with us, so this was a no-brainer in our camp. The fishing scenes in this classic are layered with messages that resonate the good in life while, at the same time, showcase some breathtaking action, the grace and skill of fly fishing and the undeniable allure of nature.

See for yourself…


We saw this in the theaters back in 1995 and let’s just say we’re finally overcoming the mental scars that it left on us. That’s the sign of a good movie. Poor Pitt never saw any of it coming. Even with Morgan Freeman as his guide and mentor, these two detectives had their work cut out for them with Kevin Spacey – not to mention the ultimate effect and ‘special delivery’ it ended up taking on Gwyneth Paltrow. Nonetheless, it’s one of director David Fincher’s signature projects and, 20 years later, it has still left a mark.

Here’s a refresher course on the darkness and those 7 deadly sins…


We stop and watch this 2011 blockbuster every time we come across it on TV. Pitt, as the Oakland A’s GM Billy Beane, just sucks us in. His trademark matter-of-fact tone that fluctuates from the easy going to the highly animated, the myriad facial expressions, that gleam in his eye – all of these elements perfectly depict a MLB executive who’s gone out on a limb to format his own winning baseball team with limited funds. Throw in the writing of Aaron Sorkin. an Oscar-nominated performance by Jonah Hill and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman as manager Art Howe and this film makes the cut on road trips when we’re putting together a traveling DVD collection.

Here’s one of the many scenes that got Pitt an Oscar nomination as well as the film for best of the year…

True Romance

Is there such a thing as an underrated Quentin Tarantino movie? If there is then it’s 1993’s True Romance. We think this is a brilliant film and, while Pitt’s stoner character Floyd has a minor role, he leaves a memorable comedic impression that still has us smiling and thinking about those plastic honey bottles that were designed like bears.

Note the thin and up-and-coming James Gandolfini…

Ocean’s Eleven

The Brad Pitt charm should have its own character in the credits of this one. The ultimate Las Vegas caper would have gone nowhere without Pitt’s Rusty Ryan. What we love about this role is something in particular that we think Pitt does extremely well as an actor. We think that the multi-tasking he performs with his hands and body goes relatively unheralded – or just taken for granted. With Ocean’s, note how he’s always eating something, pointing, adjusting his clothes or posture, licking his fingers, scratching his head and the like. It infuses so much more into the character with the audience. We’re not sure if it’s all Pitt or some genius direction from Steven Soderbergh, but we don’t care. We’re just pleased it made the trip to Sin City.

We could not have edited this better ourselves. Here’s what we’re talking about with Brad Pitt and eating…


Pitt is a comedic revelation in Guy Ritchie’s 2000 film as a quick talking, inaudible gypsy and bare knuckle boxing champion. As Mickey O’Neil, his role as a one-punch knockout artist paves the way for twists and turns throughout the film, frustrating the hell out of the likes of Jason Statham. When Pitt didn’t have us smiling, we were howling over the late Dennis Farina in what we could argue is one of his funniest acting roles.

Here’s a taste from Mickey O’Neil with some greatly appreciated subtitles to follow along…


Fight Club

The first rule of Fight Club should be that Brad Pitt is a badass. Now old pals from Seven, Pitt and David Fincher team up again for this 1999 project that had audiences rethinking the social graces that go along with being passive and part of life’s herd. We’re not ashamed to say that everything in this movie was much clearer in comprehension the second time around. Pitt’s Tyler Durden was the backbone to not only Edward Norton, but also Meatloaf, Jared Leto and a host of other lost souls. It’s as different and original as we’re going to come across while still being utterly engrossing and entertaining – and we loved his wardrobe in this flic. Absolutely epic. Kudos also go out to whomever was training Pitt in the gym for this role. The 1999 Brad Pitt, from head to toe, was a rare and beautiful bird.