An Underrated Accountant’s Top 5 List of Overrated Actors

This, I know, is going to come as a surprise, but the awkward girl that was me in high school actually had friends. I don’t know how this happened since I was more interested in writing poetry starring the words “tempestuous,” “ocher,” and “sublime” than I was to having real conversations with people, but against all odds I was able to socialize with some nice kids who overlooked my penchant for wearing black in the middle of the summer.

My friend Tommy was one of those friends. We go back. He wrote poetry too I think, but he grew up and got a good, normal job. He’s an accountant now, which I think means he goes to an office every day and is trusted with something more valuable than the box of store-brand Cheerios that the universe has put me in charge of.

One of these people will go on to have a respectable career as an accountant. The other one will go on use popcorn as packing material when she runs out of bubble wrap.

One of these people will go on to have a respectable career as an accountant. The other one will go on to use popcorn as packing material when she runs out of bubble wrap.

Today, my friend Tommy is taking the reins and sharing with us five actors who he thinks the world could do without. Please welcome him to the group and encourage him in the comments to start a blog as well. Those numbers don’t need him; we do.

1. Nicholas Cage
Nicholas Cage is first on the list, but this has nothing to do with his need to take on ANY role for the next 20 years to eliminate his $100 million debt. Maybe it’s the southerner in me, but I just can’t forgive him for the absurd Alabama accent in Con Air. (Emily’s Note: Similarly, I cannot forgive Kevin Spacey for his South Carolina accent in House of Cards. If it weren’t for Zooey Barnes, this would be the thing I hated most about the show.)

Also, in college, the rules of my favorite drinking game all depended on his atrocious acting qualities of The Family Man. I don’t remember any of the rules. That’s how bad Cage is. (Emily’s Note: His work in Raising Arizona almost cancels out his work in, oh, say, everything else. Almost.)

If you took all these pictures and laid them on top of each other, you'd get the lead singer to Nickelback.

If you took all these pictures and laid them on top of each other, you’d get the lead singer to Nickelback.

2. Jeff Goldblum
Why does he always have to play the weird scientist artist character? What makes him so damn qualified for that? But mainly, he took Jurassic Park from one of my all-time top 10 movies to probably slightly less than 100. That’s a factor of 10, folks. (Emily’s Note: Once you play a man who turns into a fly, the next logical move is to play neurotic intellectuals for the rest of your career. Sorry, Jeff, but that bill’s already been filled by Woody Allen.)

4. Keanu Reeves
This one actually pains me to mention, since Bill and Ted were my idols for three months in the third grade. Regardless, I’ll leave this one with an exchange from The Replacements when Ted’s – I mean Keanu’s – character is asked by Gene Hackman what took him so long to make it to the game, which was by then two quarters deep. One stone(d?)-faced smirk and dreadful one-liner later, and you forget all about the box-office success that was The Matrix(Emily’s Note: I still cannot bring myself to see The Matrix because I’ll be damned if Keanu makes me feel dumb for not understanding the science fictioniness of it.)

By the way, traffic. Traffic was what took him so long. 

We're only making fun of him because he has his own meme.

We’re only making fun of him because we’re jealous he has his own meme.

4. Paul Walker, Vin Diesel, Steven Seagal, Jean-Claude Van Damme
We can lump these guys together because they’re basically the same. More than 75% of people think these actors aren’t good for much other than kicking fictitious ass and looking good in wife beaters. I only hesitate to put every single one of these marshal* artists as #1’s on my list because, as I mentioned, more than 75% of people think they suck. By definition they can’t be overrated. But, their good looks and fantastic publicists have made studio moguls Scrooge McDuck dolla dolla bills. 

*I only misspelled “martial” because I don’t want to insult the real deals out there.

5. Justin Bieber

A singer, not an actor, you say? We can make an exception for the Biebs. Feast your eyes:


He looks kind of like a broken folding chair. Source

Now tell me he’s not acting like a douche. (Emily’s Note: No arguments here. Can we have a moment of silence for Biebsie’s pants, though?) 

Who do you think is highly overrated?


  1. I would have thought that with an accountants love of figures, that you might have come up with a longer list of deadwood.

    1. Who would you suggest we add to make our list longer?

      1. Bruce Willis for starters, perhaps he could be added to the Vin Deisels etc, and surely to the little boy singer you could add Miley Cyrus, and don’t get me started on Robert Pattinson, Segal, Beyonce, Megan Fox, Hasselhoff, et al.

        1. Oh man, Beyonce should not be allowed on ANY movie sets unless she is singing. And even then…. ;D

          1. Agreed, so ask your friend Tommy to extend his list, perhaps we could have Tommy’s list, part two, even worse than before.

        2. BRUCE WILLIS. YES.

        3. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

          I love Bruce Willis. He’s my number 1 on my “list”. I would let that man slather me in whip cream and teach me how to do things only a man like him could teach me.

          1. I’m following you because of this comment. Just thought I’d let you know– one Bruce Willis groupie to another. ;)

            1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

              LOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOLOL And now I’m following you. But not just because you’re a fellow lover of all things Brucey. Also, because your blog is amazing and you might be my new favorite person. Tonight I’m going to pray to Bruce, Our Heavenly Lover and thank him for bringing you into my life.

          2. The only movie I’ve really seen him in was The Sixth Sense and I really liked him in it.

            1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

              Okay, so The 5th Element, Hudson Hawk (which is fabulous), and Unbreakable are my favorites. And of course The Sixth Sense. If you haven’t seen, you should check them out. I believe Hudson Hawk is on Netflix, and he’s adorable in it.

              1. Ahhhh The 5th Element! I have seen parts of it and it is epic.

                1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

                  The 5th Element careened me into puberty. If ya know what I’m sayin’…

  2. Jeff Goldblum was great in his episode of “Friends.” Other than that…

    And Keanu was spot-on in Parenthood. Because he played himself.

    1. He was fantastic in Parenthood….a drag racing teen who knocks up his girlfriend and tells a young Joaquin Phoenix about the birds and the bees using the words “dude” and “chick”. Love that movie ;D

      1. That was Joaquin Phoenix? Dude. Mind = blown.

        I actually liked the Matrix movies. I despise KR, but I liked the movies despite his involvement.

        1. It was! I LOVE that movie. Adore it. In fact, you inspired me to write a little about it for RTT on Thursday ;D

      2. What about My Own Private Idaho? As for The Matrix, you gotta do it.

        1. I forgot he was in that! I was actually so confused throughout that whole movie that I was probably drunk when I watched it.

          1. Now you’re talking. I’m gonna watch it that way next time.

  3. Even with the sound accountant logic for disliking all of these actors, I crunched the numbers (see what I did there?), and I think I can find a tolerable movie that they’ve all done.
    Except for Paul Walker. And Justin Bieber.
    So, whoops, I guess I can’t.

    1. Yes! It is so hard to do. Maybe some day they will both make a decent movie, but I am not really wanting to give them the chance.

  4. A sublime accounting of “meh” celebrity, painted in deep tunes of puce and ocher.
    While I would like to add Elizabeth Hurley to the list, I fear that addition is added out of tempestuousness arisen from a temptation to join the fray.

    1. Have you been reading my high school poetry?

      1. No, but I was impressed to see your name in multiple hearts with every single member of Duran Duran in your old notebooks.

  5. All great picks. In my mind, Raising Arizona does erase everything else Cage has done since (one of my all-time fave movies)

    As for the Biebs, I have no words. Although douche comes pretty close.

    1. Oh, I’ve got one — Kevin Costner. He basically plays the same character in every movie.

      1. Isn’t he like 72 now? How did that happen?

    2. It is so good. Fifteen-year-old me would add Con Air to the list of his great movies, but fifteen-year-old me also used pink puff paint to decorate her backpack with quotes from Chicken Soup From the Soul.

  6. Oh the Justin Bieber bit made me laugh like a loon.. It is absolutely true and I agree with pretty much every one you listed..I have one that I think is highly overrated as well, Mark Wahlberg…To me he is one of the worst, yes he can be funny but I find it really hard to take him seriously with that voice, the voice that never shows any type of emotion…To me he is just awful…
    But thank you for this list, it is absolutely accurate :)

    1. I totally agree. I feel like he plays the exact same character in every movie he’s in too. Wife beater with a heart of gold.

      1. My point exactly! It was really hard to watch The Happening, I could not take him seriously. Every time he was supposed to be scared or distraught he actually sounded amused. Just silly.

  7. So speaking of bad accents and Keanu Reeves, you should see the movie Youngblood, wherein Keanu plays a French Canadian goalie. Who just happens to sound like a surfer. It’s spectacularly bad.

    I’d have to volunteer Seth Rogen for the list, since he basically just plays himself in every single role. And himself is a massive douche.

    1. I really, really disliked him in The 40-Year-Old Virgin. I just wanted to smack him the entire time. However, I loved him in Knocked Up and in that show he did with Judd Apatow in the 90s whose name escapes me at this exact moment. I dunno. I’d take him over Dane Cook.

      1. You’re thinking of Freaks and Geeks. The part he played was “High School Seth Rogen.”

        1. Ah, yes. I just remember that he dated a girl with a penis in that show and for some reason that makes me like him. I don’t even know…

  8. A broken folding chair, ha ha ha ha hah!!!

    1. I can’t unsee it!

  9. Yesterday, I saw a picture of a naked Justin Bieber. His privates were covered up by a guitar, and I have to say he did provoke an emotion in me. Isn’t that what actors are supposed to do? The emotion was “projectile vomit.”

    1. I’m almost more offended that he was holding an actual musical instrument that one must have skill to play than I am that he was nude. Both are gross, but I just feel like that guitar needs to go to rehab now.

  10. Great post! I’m still trying to understand the appeal of Will Ferrell so I’d have to add him to my list.

    1. I really liked him a lot when he was on SNL but he’s so wonky in real life that I just get stressed out when I see him interviewed. I think that same part of my brain that makes me want to hem in severely hyperactive kids gets kicked on when I see him.

  11. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

    Sweet Jesus. No.

    For one, Kevin Spacey’s South Carolina accent wasn’t his first stab at our Southern Drawl (Midnight In The Garden Of Good And Evil in which he played a Georgia boy), and I didn’t think it’s that bad. However, I am from Alabama and my family lineage is mostly white trash and redneck, with sprinklings of Southern Belle here and there, so his accents in both weren’t foreign to me at all. Along with that, I spent my late teens in North Carolina and some of those Carolinians do talk like that. My friends and I have actually praised him for it.

    Moving on, I adore Jeff Goldblum, and for my husband and I (the hubster collects Jurassic Park memorabilia, has several of the books and we have an annual Jurassic Park night at my house where we watch the first two, but not the third because we hate the third) LOVE Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park so hard, We honestly adore anything Jeff Goldblum saunters into. It might also be because he’s Jewish and my husband’s family is Jewish and from upstate New York, so the way he holds himself and talks is very familiar and endearing.

    That said, everyone else on the list can promptly go away. I was raised on Raising Arizona (lol) which is a big deal considering I came from a deeply religious family background where I didn’t know what a Big Mac was until I was 15 and I wasn’t allowed to listen to “secular” music until I was 17. For some reason though, (my Dad and his sense of humor), Raising Arizona was a standard at my house. That and Young Frankenstein. And yeah, Raising Arizona erases much of Nic’s epic failures.

    I would like to add Kevin Costner. While he has been in movies that I enjoy, when I think of him as an actor, I’m not really impressed.

    I would also like to add Ryan Gosling. NOW WAIT BEFORE WE ALL GET MAD. The sad fact is this: he’s really not that diverse as an actor. I can honestly say I’ve never seen him play a role in which I thought, “Wow. What an amazing portrayal. Brilliant.” He’s just popular because he’s a fine piece of ass, and he’s a meme. That’s pretty much it. He can go on.

    1. OK so quick Jurassic Park 3 story that might make you uncomfortable but I don’t mean it to because I find it totally hilarious: on the night of my dad’s funeral, my cousins took me to the movies just to get my mind off things and I selected Jurassic Park 3 to view.

      I KNOW.

      Why, why, why? Questions for the ages.

      I don’t get the appeal of Ryan Gosling either. He was pretty good in Blue Valentine I guess and I wanted to love Lars and the Real Girl OMG SO MUCH, but I feel like a lot of people like him because he’s good-looking or whatever and men who look like him aren’t sexy or hunky to me.

      1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

        I love you Jurassic Park story. This is why we’re friends.

        Also, I adore all things Lars and the Real Girl, but yes. He’s mostly just eye candy. Which is awesome, of course. But he won’t be winning any Oscars any time soon.

        (Unrelated, have you seen my FAQ on my blog? It’ll give you a chuckle.)

  12. All of the above and Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, well past their sell-by dates.

    1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply


    2. Tom Cruise is loony tunes so I’m glad he’s losing some of his popularity.

  13. I totally agree!!! I refuse to watch anything with # 1 or # 4 ugh.

    1. Both are just so bad. Borrowing a phrase from a comment above, Nicholas Cage is far past his sell-by date.

  14. I actually liked Goldblum in the Jurassic Park movies…

    1. It’s ok. We can still be friends ;D Now, if you said you liked Bieber….

      1. Not a chance…

  15. I agree with everything but Jeff Goldblum! I heart him :)

    Start a blog! I can already tell that I’d follow you.

    1. I am trying to get Tommy to start a blog! He’s always been really funny and awesome.

  16. NotAPunkRocker · · Reply

    I love Goldblum and Reeves just because of the fact they are so schlocky. Can we go for overrated actresses instead? Because I am sick of Sandra Bullock and Julia Roberts playing themselves, oh golly shucks darn.

    1. My aunt absolutely HATES Julia Roberts and has pretty much done so since the dawn of time so I’m hoping she sees your comment! I don’t mind her all that much because I am obsessed with Steel Magnolias, but I totally agree with you on Sandra Bullock. I will never understand her allure.

      1. NotAPunkRocker · · Reply

        She wasn’t so bad in Steel Magnolias…because she dies.

          1. Idk I really like Erin Brockovitch and Pretty Woman!

  17. I have no idea why but initially read this as “UNDERRATED” actors. My respect for society came back once I realized it was, in fact, overrated ;)

    Honestly, I dont know when it happened, but Nick Cage got creeptastic. Bad.

    1. I need to use the word “creeptastic” more often ;D

  18. Awesome! I have no arguments except for a hearty defense of House of Cards, Zooey Barnes included. And, well, I guess I really liked Jeff Goldblum in Jurassic Park too, but maybe it’s just that nothing on earth could mar my adoration for a movie full of velociraptors and T-Rexes. Dinosaurs forever!

    1. Oh my friend, we have finally found the one thing we have differing opinions on. My fury towards Zooey Barnes burns brighter than a thousand suns.

  19. #4 made me laugh out loud, and it’s pretty accurate. I agree with the list (though I still have a soft spot for Mr. Cage), and I would add to it, Channing Tatum. I know I’ll get some boos for that one, but I just don’t see the guy’s appeal (or acting skills). I’m sure he’d be crying all the way to the bank if he read this comment…

    1. I only liked Channing in that dancing movie…can’t remember the name of it right now lol. But…he’s pretty bad and not all that attractive hahaha.

      1. I never saw that movie. To his credit, he was okay in ‘White House Down.’ I’ll give him that one.

        1. I haven’t seen that one, but I wanna watch it just because Gerard Butler is in it *grrr* lol

    2. Can I just admit that I don’t even know exactly who Channing Tatum is? Whenever I hear his name, I always think people are talking about Tatum O’Neal.

      1. Haha, that’s just as well!

  20. I love really bad movies and Nicholas Cage makes some of the worst, so is actually one of my favorite actors. I know…wrap your head around that one.

    1. Have you seen Troll 2?

        1. It is the absolute worst movie of all time. (In a good way). I think it’s on Netflix so check it out.

          1. I will! Sounds right up my wheelhouse.

            1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

              First off, Troll 2 is amazing. Secondly, after seeing Troll 2, immediately look for Best Worst Movie. It’s a documentary about Troll 2. And it is delightful. Absolutely delightful. We host Troll 2 parties at my house. It’s that wondrous.

              1. I expect an invite. :)

                1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

                  Everyone is invited. There’s even a drinking game involved. Of course.

                  1. I’ll bring the sangria.

                    1. The 10 Things Blog · ·

                      And you will be a crowd favorite.

  21. Jeff Goldblum! I would argue that he’s not overrated at all, since he’s usually totally forgotten, and *murmurs-mumbles* also because I love him with the passion of a starry eyed fan girl. Of course, I love the awfulness of everyone on this list so perhaps my judgement is flawed.

    Minus Bieber. He’s awful.

    Also, the world needs more blogging accountants. Go forth and blog!

    1. The 10 Things Blog · · Reply

      I second this blogging accountant notion. GO AND DO, SIR.

    2. That’s what I keep telling him! He needs a blog. IMO, everyone needs a blog! ;D (PS I actually really like Jeff Goldblum on Portlandia.)

  22. Oh my goodness this is so correct! I literally will *NOT* watch a movie, just because Nicholas Cage or Keanu Reeves is in it. Also, I am so sick and tired of Jason Statham. I feel like he’s up there with Vin Diesel (although I like him in Fast and the Furious). These overrated movies with all these blowing up scenes *shakes head* They’re getting ridiculous.

    1. Hahaha I haven’t watched a blowing up movie in so long. Come to think of it, the last one I remember seeing was Con Air starring none other than Nicholas Cage. Oh man, this has really come full circle.

      1. hahaha how hilarious! Seriously I think ever action movie now-a-days has Tom Cruise, Ewan Mcgregor (sp?), or Jason Statham in it. Irritating I tell you! Make some room for up-coming actors!

  23. To come to the defense of the guys on this list, aren’t they already universally hated? The only time you see a Nicolas Cage movie is when the only other choice that weekend has Adam Brody in it aka when I saw “Next” instead of “In the Land of Women.”

    I find Jesse Eisenberg entirely overrated, that is if he even is rated as a good actor by anyone.

    1. Is he the guy who is in the Facebook movie? If so, that’s a sad distinction.

      1. Yes! That’s him. Michael Cera awkward.

  24. I have no idea how it is Nicole Kidman keeps getting work. She’s just awful. Awful.

    And that she has an academy award and Annette Benning doesn’t – how does that work? oh yeah, Annette Benning married Warren Beatty and Nicole married Captain Crazy. The bad marriage pity Oscar!

    1. I don’t love Nicole Kidman either. She’s OK in Eyed Wide Shut, but I think it’s because Stanley Kubrick was able to mold her mediocrity into something interesting.

      1. Well, think about the way Kubrick used female actors in films:

        There are no speaking parts for women in Fear and Desire
        All the women in The Killing are either shrews, Molls or Hookers
        Paths of Victory only has one speaking part for a woman, in the final scene (and she was the future Mrs Kubrick!)
        In Spartacus, all the women were basically property
        Lolita had two strong female parts but you can’t say they were positive ones
        In Dr Strangelove, the only woman is a call girl fo some sort
        In 2001, women are only bystanders
        in A Clockwork Orange, well, less said the better there
        Barry Lyndon – well, that would be the exception to the rule, actually
        The Shining – Shelly Winters, the Nicole Kidman fo her day
        Full Metal Jacket – whores or, surprisingly, the antagonist
        and EWS – he basically shot Kidman who she acted best – by not saying anything. And the rest of the women were all prostitutes! I think there’s a theme here! :-)

        1. WOW. When you break it down like that, I kind of like him a lot less :/

    2. I agree! I hate Nicole Kidman even though she is Australian like me. She is intensely irritating… Moulin Rouge made me want to gouge my eyeballs out

      1. I heartily disliked that movie too.

  25. Cage just darkened our doorstep last month, evidently cashing in on what amount to state-issued coupons for thrifty actors.

    He singlehandedly snarled my commute for over three weeks, then, typical of an introvert (takes one to know one?!) disappeared without a trace after all the fanfare.

    Hmph. I much prefer their having filmed Close Encounters of the Third Kind here, back in the day – at least it was low-key, and Richard Dreyfuss was both thrifty and classy.

    1. Ack! What a nincompoop! Richard Dreyfuss is one of my favorites, though. He is awesome in Jaws ;D

  26. Nicolas Cage would be my #1 too; and, the rest of your list is excellent. Cameron Diaz makes my list—since women call themselves actORs, and I’m not sure if you left off women on purpose: but entirely overrated! I’d also add Adam Sandler (except maybe in 50 First Dates), he just bugs me; Woody Allen- ok, he may be a great writer, but he give me the willies. Sylvester Stallone, should have been lumped with the Norris gang. As a movie junky, the list might go on and on… but yours was great! Fun post and welcome to blogland!

    1. OMG, I cannot stand Cameron Diaz. She makes me want to punch kittens! Part Two of this post is in the works, and we’ll be creating a list of lady actors who have passed their expiration date. She’ll be on there.

      1. Can’t wait to read it!

  27. Cage in The season of the witch takes acting to a new dimension

    1. In a good or bad way?

  28. Overrated? Ryan Gosling. Not for his acting but for his looks. I don’t understand the fangirldom. He looks like a High School maths teacher

    1. I don’t get it either! He’s just not really my type, and I have seen a lot of teachers who are way cuter than him (my husband, to name one.)

  29. First of all, Tommy has written an excellent list peppered with excellent editorial comments from you. For many years my dear friend, Coco, lived out on Long Island, so we would only see each other a few times a year. About three years ago, she finally moved into the city. I had passes to a preview screening of a film called “Barney’s Version” starring Paul Giamatti. This was the first film we ever saw together. I had no idea that it prides itself on being politically incorrect i.e., think misogyny cross-bred with anti-semitism. I cannot tell you in enough words how horrible this film was, but it occurred to me that if Coco was a potential gf and not a close personal straight friend, this would have been a disaster date. I have no idea why we did not walk out, it was that bad. Fortunately, we were both on the same page about it, but it also turned us both off Paul Giamatti forever having been subject to seeing his pale, hairy, flabby middle aged body scantily clad. Just writing that sentence is enough to make me reach for the Maalox.

    1. I have so many mixed feelings about Paul Giamatti. I really liked him in Sideways since I was working at a hoity-toity restaurant that prided itself on its wine selection when I saw it. But then he comes out with movies like Fred Claus and The Hangover 2, and I’m like, “really”? C’mon Paul, pick some better roles. And what you just told me about that movie you saw makes him seem pretty unscrupulous. Ugh.

      1. It was a big starring role in a film that dragged on so long and was so painful to watch my eyeballs have yet to fully recover.

  30. I POWERHATE Nick Cage, but I love Con Air, which is confusing for me. I cannot agree about Jeff Goldblum, though- he does play the same guy over and over, but I like that guy very much. Ever watch Igby Goes Down? So good. And weirdly sexy.

    1. OK, so I am totally adding the word “powerhate” to my vocabulary. That is a good one ;D Also, I love Con Air toooooo. WHAT IS WRONG WITH OUR BRAINS? I saw Igby Goes Down a long time ago. Isn’t Macauley Culkin’s brother in it?

  31. […] 200 times over the weekend. Then on Tuesday, Heather reminded me of the movie Parenthood in her comment. Parenthood was one of the movies my family got fixated on and rented from Blockbuster on multiple […]

  32. i hate to say this – but i have NEVER thought Jack Nicholson deserved all of the accolades he’s received. Let the rock throwing begin.

  33. Couldn’t agree more with your #1 :)

  34. […] An Underrated Accountant’s Top 5 List of Overrated Actors. […]

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