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The Best Willem Dafoe Movies

Updated February 21, 2020 5.6k votes 616 voters 49.3k views88 items

List RulesVote for your favorite movies, regardless of critic reviews or how big the role was.

List of the best Willem Dafoe movies, ranked best to worst with movie trailers when available. Willem Dafoe's highest grossing movies have received a lot of accolades over the years, earning millions upon millions around the world. The order of these top Willem Dafoe movies is decided by how many votes they receive, so only highly rated Willem Dafoe movies will be at the top of the list. Willem Dafoe has been in a lot of films, so people often debate each other over what the greatest Willem Dafoe movie of all time is. If you and a friend are arguing about this then use this list of the most entertaining Willem Dafoe films to end the squabble once and for all.

If you think the best Willem Dafoe role isn't at the top, then upvote it so it has the chance to become number one. The greatest Willem Dafoe performances didn't necessarily come from the best movies, but in most cases they go hand in hand.

Everything from Pacific Rim to The Walker is included on this list.

"This list answers the questions, "What are the best Willem Dafoe movies?" and "What are the greatest Willem Dafoe roles of all time?"

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    Platoon

    Johnny Depp, Charlie Sheen
    Platoon is a 1986 American war film written and directed by Oliver Stone and starring Tom...  more

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    #26 of 46 Movies That Won Best Picture at the Oscars and Golden Globes#9 of 376 The 50+ Best War Movies Ever Made, Ranked

  • 2
    139
    31

    The Hunter

    Willem Dafoe, Sam Neill
    The Hunter is a 2011 drama film written by Alice Addison and directed by Daniel Nettheim based...  more

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    #5 of 33 The Best Movies About Hunting#72 of 85 The Best Movies About Redemption

  • 3
    93
    19

    Mississippi Burning

    Willem Dafoe, Gene Hackman
    Mississippi Burning is a 1988 American thriller film directed by Alan Parker and written by...  more

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    #60 of 301 The Best Movies Based On True Stories#8 of 50 The Best Oscar-Nominated Movies of the '80s

  • 4
    73
    8

    Light Sleeper

    Willem Dafoe, Susan Sarandon
    Light Sleeper is an American drama film written and directed by Paul Schrader in 1992. It...  more
  • 5
    103
    32

    The Boondock Saints

    Willem Dafoe, Norman Reedus
    The Boondock Saints is a 1999 American film written and directed by Troy Duffy. The film stars...  more

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    #97 of 103 The Very Best Movie Franchises#374 of 440 Your Favorite Movies of the 1990s

  • 6
    125
    50

    Born on the Fourth of July

    Tom Cruise, Willem Dafoe
    Born on the Fourth of July is a 1989 American drama film adaptation of the best-selling...  more

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    #186 of 306 The Greatest Movie Themes#133 of 291 The Greatest Soundtracks of All Time

  • 7
    86
    25

    Adam Resurrected

    Willem Dafoe, Jeff Goldblum
    Adam Resurrected is a 2008 American-German-Israeli film, directed by Paul Schrader and adapted...  more
  • 8
    70
    14

    White Sands

    Mickey Rourke, Samuel L. Jackson
    White Sands is a 1992 crime film directed by Roger Donaldson and written by Daniel Pyne for...  more
  • 9
    92
    32

    Spider-Man 2

    Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst
    Spider-Man 2 is a 2004 American superhero film directed by Sam Raimi, based on the Marvel...  more

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    Clear Reasons 'Spider-Man 2' Is The Greatest Superhero Sequel Ever Made#370 of 1,195 Every Oscar Winning Film Ever

  • 10
    79
    23

    Tom & Viv

    Willem Dafoe, Miranda Richardson
  • 11
    75
    21

    Animal Factory

    Mickey Rourke, Willem Dafoe
    Animal Factory is a 2000 drama film about life in prison, set in San Quentin. The film was...  more
  • 12
    75
    23

    Edges of the Lord

    Willem Dafoe, Haley Joel Osment
    Edges of the Lord is an award-winning 2001 film, written and directed by Yurek Bogayevicz, set...  more

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    #63 of 66 The Best Movies About the Holocaust#14 of 29 The Best R-Rated Historical Drama Movies

  • 13
    84
    31

    Streets of Fire

    Willem Dafoe, Diane Lane
    Streets of Fire is a 1984 film directed by Walter Hill and co-written by Hill and Larry Gross....  more
  • 14
    63
    16

    Faraway, So Close!

    Willem Dafoe, Lou Reed
    Faraway, So Close! is a 1993 film by German director Wim Wenders. The screenplay is by...  more
  • 15
    67
    20

    Manderlay

    Willem Dafoe, Bryce Dallas Howard
    Manderlay is a 2005 Danish drama film written and directed by Lars von Trier and the second...  more

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    #325 of 333 The Best Political Films Ever Made#16 of 23 23 Movie Sets That Have Killed Animals During Production

  • 16
    53
    9

    The Dust of Time

    Willem Dafoe, Irène Jacob
    The Dust of Time is a 2008 Greek drama film written and directed by Theodoros Angelopoulos,...  more
  • 17
    67
    22

    Cry-Baby

    Johnny Depp, Willem Dafoe
    Cry-Baby is a 1990 American teen musical romantic comedy film written and directed by John...  more

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    #345 of 782 The Greatest Chick Flicks Ever Made#79 of 201 The Best Teen Romance Movies

  • 18
    63
    18

    Miral

    Willem Dafoe, Freida Pinto
    Miral is a 2010 biographical political film directed by Julian Schnabel. The screenplay was...  more
  • 19
    62
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    My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done?

    Willem Dafoe, Dave Bautista
    My Son, My Son, What Have Ye Done? is a 2009 film directed by Werner Herzog and produced by...  more
  • 20
    58
    19

    Pavilion of Women

    Willem Dafoe, John Cho
    Pavilion of Women is a 2001 adventure drama romance war film written by Yan Luo an d Paul...  more
  • 21
    79
    41

    Spider-Man

    Tobey Maguire, Willem Dafoe
    Spider-Man is a 2002 American superhero film directed by Sam Raimi, based on the Marvel Comics...  more

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    18 Easter Eggs And References You Missed From 'Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse'#24 of 156 The Best Superhero Movies Ever Made

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    48
    14

    Lulu on the Bridge

    Willem Dafoe, Mira Sorvino
    Lulu on the Bridge is a 1998 American romantic-mystery drama film written and directed by...  more
  • 23
    50
    16

    Odd Thomas

    50 Cent, Willem Dafoe
    Odd Thomas is a 2013 American mystery thriller film based on Dean Koontz's novel of the same...  more
  • 24
    58
    25

    Spider-Man 3

    Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst
    Spider-Man 3 is a 2007 American superhero film directed by Sam Raimi, based on the Marvel...  more

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    Behind The Scenes Of What Made 'Spider-Man 3' Such A Creative Flop#160 of 186 The Best Alien Movies Ever Made

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    60
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    Heaven's Gate

    Mickey Rourke, Willem Dafoe
    Heaven's Gate is a 1980 American epic Western film written and directed by Michael Cimino. It...  more

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    #452 of 512 The Greatest Movies Of The 1980s, Ranked#196 of 400 The Best Western Movies Ever Made