Home STREAMING AND TV GUIDE Every Movie Starring Mick Jagger, Ranked

Every Movie Starring Mick Jagger, Ranked

Considered by many to be the most popular and influential frontman in rock music history, there are very few who are not aware of who Mick Jagger is. Jagger’s band, The Rolling Stones, has sold over 200 million albums worldwide and has been touring for over 50 years, selling out stadiums across the globe. The success of Mick Jagger in music is an undisputed fact, a well-earned legacy that is irreplaceable today.

However, few know about Jagger’s career as an actor. This is unsurprising in his sixteen acting credits, with only eight being named roles in movies. Moreover, many of his credits are obscure or in films that were poorly received, meaning the chance that someone will have stumbled upon one of his performances is rare. Still, there are some notable roles, and in this article, we will look at every movie starring Mick Jagger, ranked.

10 The War Between the Tates

The War Between The Tates Book Cover
Random House

One of the more minor roles of Mick Jagger came from the TV movie The War Between the Tates, based on the novel of the same name by Alison Lurie. Taking place during the ’60s, the film explores the complexities of the era through a couple facing their struggles as their relationship crumbles under infidelity.

The film starred Elizabeth Ashley and Richard Crenna as the titular Tates and was directed by Lee Phillips. Jagger’s role in the film is brief but memorable, playing a rebellious student on campus named Joe Freedom. This entry barely squeaks into our list as notable appearances from the iconic singer, “beating out bank employee” in The Bank Job, “solider in bar” in Enigma, and “self in Hyde Park” in Cucumber Castle.

9 Running Out of Luck

Mick Jagger Running Out of Luck
Julien Temple

Jagger had a few rough goes of breaking into film, notably the failed project Laughter in the Dark based on the book by literary royalty Vladimir Nabokov. The only indication of its existence is on movie databases, which oddly have a rating applied to the film and a handful of storyboards.

Related: 10 Lost Films that Just Might be Found One Day

Running Out of Luck was made, with the most notable proof coming via a music video that utilized some of the footage from the feature film. The movie is a parody of stardom and the luxurious lifestyle that comes with it and sees Jagger splitting with his girlfriend to go on a womanizing adventure. Critics poorly received the film, and Jagger and his team ultimately decided it would be “embarrassing and potentially incriminating” if ever released. There have still been screenings of this film, but it is a rarity, and Running Out of Luck is unlikely ever to be released.

8 Freejack

Mick Jagger Free Jack
Warner Bros.

Out of all the roles the charismatic Mick Jagger may have indulged in throughout his career, space mercenary is unlikely to be at the forefront of anyone’s perceptions. Yet, Jagger found himself playing intergalactic bounty hunter Victor Vacendak across from notable actors Emilio Estevez and Anthony Hopkins in the Geoff Murphy-helmed 1992 sci-fi action film Freejack.

The film is, admittedly, not very good, with the only appeal coming from the movie falling under the ‘so bad it’s good’ banner. This also extends to Jagger’s role, as performance is hammed up and teeters between entertaining and awful. Still, for those who love cheesy sci-fi movies, noted by their over-the-top performances, Jagger is a treat to watch in this one.

7 The Man from Elysian Fields

Mick Jagger Man From Elysian Fields
Samuel Goldwyn Films

This 2001 American drama saw Jagger playing Luther Fox, the head of an escort agency that caters to wealthy women. In the movie, he acts as an introduction to the world of male escorts to a struggling novelist named Byron Tiller (Andy Garcia). Jagger’s role in the film was pivotal to the plot, and Roger Ebert even gave a nod to the performance calling it intriguing.

Unfortunately, the film did little to garner interest in more performances from Jagger. Critic and audience reviews are mixed, but even with those praising it for being a clever comedy of manners, The Man from Elysian Fieldsperformed poorly at the box office, barely making back its budget.

6 Ned Kelly

Mick Jagger as Ned Kelly
United Artists

Jaggers’s first significant starring role came via Tony Richardson’s Ned Kelly, where the rock icon played the titular Australian outlaw. Those perceptive will likely understand how this became a controversial casting choice, and much of the discourse around the film comes from Mick Jagger, British, playing a famous figure from Australian history whose background was that of an Irish immigrant.

However, the film had a mixed reaction beyond the peculiar casting. Praised by some for its visual direction and unique, fictionalized take on the outlaw, while others felt it was too fantastical and exaggerated to merit the Ned Kelly moniker. Still, one thing the critics agreed on despite the controversy is that Jagger was not well-fitted for the role, making this notable as his first introduction into cinema and not for his performance.

5 Bent

Bent 1997 Film
FilmFour Distributors

Given the controversial nature of Bent, focusing on the persecution of homosexuals under the Nazis, it is no surprise that there is a pretty drastic line between fans and detractors. With some finding it carries a powerful message, others felt it insultingly missed the mark and was a bad adaptation of the groundbreaking play it was based upon.

Regardless, Jagger’s involvement in the project playing the cross-dressing gay club host Greta was a bold choice for the actor in an already challenging film. While the part was minor and relegated to the opening scenes, Jagger brought all of his glam charms and offered a sincere portrayal of the LGBTQ+ community during a dark historical moment.

4 The Burnt Orange Heresy

Mick Jagger The Burnt Orange Heresy
Sony Pictures Classics

Playing a manipulative art dealer named Joseph Cassidy, Jagger exudes mischievous charm in the 2019 crime thriller The Burnt Orange Heresy. Moreover, Jagger excelled in this role, making his somewhat turbulent relationship with film as an actor seem like a case of miscasting and bad luck and less about lack of ability.

The movie itself would not necessarily act as a way to cement Jaggers’s acting ability as the film received mixed reviews, with many saying the way it challenged the pretentiousness of the art scene was authentic and comedic, but overall failed in its delivery. Still, as far as modern performances from Jagger go, The Burnt Orange Heresy is the most memorable, not just because of a lack of other comparisons.

3 Shine a Light

Shine A Light The Rolling Stones
Paramount Vantage

Billed by acclaimed film critic Roger Ebert as “the most intimate documentary ever made about a live rock ‘n’ roll concert,” Shine a Light is a Martin Scorcese-directed concert documentary that showcases their performance at the Beacon Theater during their 2006 A Bigger Bang Tour. The documentary also contains behind-the-scenes footage, interviews, and archive footage from past tours.

This was a first for both the Stones and Scorsese, as the heavy use of digital equipment to capture the concert was the most orchestrated and carefully executed live performance recorded for the group and Scorsese’s first-ever foray into digital technology. The result is impressive, and this is the best way to see The Rolling Stones live without actually being there and a true testament to Jaggers’ lifelong commitment to entertaining his fans.

2 Gimme Shelter

Gimme Shelter Mick Jagger
The Criterion Collection

A cautionary tale that acts as one of the low points of The Rolling Stones, Gimme Shelter chronicles the Altamont Free Concert and the subsequent killing of Meredith Hunter by a Hells Angel. Due to poor planning and a chance of venue, The Stones and the event organizers found a location that could not handle large numbers, and with no security, they instead opted to hire Hells Angels.

Related: The 25 Greatest Documentary Films of All Time, Ranked

While it can be a challenging watch, as the infamous stabbing takes place during the performance of Under My Thumb, this is an essential piece of film and music history. Alongside the Charles Manson murders, the Altamont Free Concert is considered a marker of the end of the hippy movement. Overall, the whole story around the concert and the events leading up to it are worth a watch, a piece of history to which Jagger and crew will, sadly, always be tied.

1 Performance

Mick Jagger Performance 1970
Warner Bros.

By a large margin, the best performance from Mick Jagger is, funnily enough, his role in the film Performance. The movie took advantage of Jagger as an icon in the music scene but also understood his appeal to a general audience, making him a larger than life sex-symbol who oozed all the bravado and coolness of the British music scene.

Placing Jagger in a story related directly to the industry certainly helped make this a memorable role, and the production’s experimental and innovative approach further spoke to his presence as a cultural icon of the counterculture at the time. Still, to say Jagger leaned solely on the mysticism around him as a person would be disingenuous, as he did bring a lot of charisma and sincerity to the role to cement it as the musician’s most successful and best performance in the world of film.


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