12 Best Michael Shannon Movies and TV Shows

6. Boardwalk Empire (2010-2014)

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I find myself haplessly incapable of conjuring up words for his delirious performance in this incredible semblance of a TV show. It is a marathon, that never ceases to move, failing to bamboozle us in our dire states. The slick hair, the wry smile, and the antiquated corduroy velvet suits are just a part of the intriguing personality, that is Nelson Van Alden. The show transcended boundaries of a TV show and became one of the most popular shows of its time. Embroidered with scintillating performances, a perpetually omnipresent sense of belonging, and an unprecedented urge to change the way people view the world, ‘Boardwalk Empire’ is one of the best there is.


5. Elvis and Nixon (2016)

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Just imagine two of the greatest TV characters coming together. Frank Underwood and Nelson Van Alden. Their contrasting personalities would have been a treat if wrapped into a story. Alas, it wasn’t to be. Instead, we got the two brilliant actors playing characters who are related to each other in no plausible way. President Richard Nixon and Elvis Presley mixed into one laughing riot, makes for an interesting watch. The film travels back in time and takes us into the retro and rustic ambit of the 70’s, wherein Presley requests a meeting with President Nixon. What follows next is something for you to watch yourself and savor for the next few weeks. Sumptuous and tingling.


4. 99 Homes (2014)

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It is hard to imagine to even look at, let alone working, with a man who ruined your life for good. Such was the disturbing premise of ’99 Homes’, a 2014 drama-film that revolves around Dennis Nash (Andrew Garfield), a destitute and homeless construction worker, who is compelled to work for the same man, Rick Carver (Shannon), a ruthless and selfish real-estate tycoon, who ousted him and his family from their home. Shannon, with finesse and dexterity, painted his character with pure intimidation and insouciance to give us another person to hate in this twisted world. The whole cast infact, does a commendable job.


3. Revolutionary Road (2008)

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Shannon’s brief cameo in the Dicaprio-Winslet show proved to be the film’s trump card. His brief intervention into the complicated marital wedlock of April and Frank gave the film a more realistic and tangible feel. An autistic son of a fancied socialite in the area, Shannon literally had nothing to work with, and still mesmerized and exhilarated with a finely carved and acted role. His tuned senses brought along hopelessness and a thought-provoking epiphany: life is hard. The very fact that he got nominated for an Academy award speaks volumes of the quality of his work, even though he couldn’t clock decent screen-time. The film belonged to the front-runners, Dicaprio and Winslet, but was awashed with the benevolence of a supremely talented actor.


2. Nocturnal Animals (2016)

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He almost won the Oscar. So close, yet so far, was the story of both the mentioned entities. A thoroughly devastating movie about unfulfilled ambitions and regressed indignation, ‘Nocturnal Animals’ made me cry incessantly like a uncradled infant. The dark and haunting tone of the film fell in line with the sad epicenter of the film. Shannon assumed, and made his own, the role of Bobby Andes, a terminally ill police officer, who takes on the case of Tony Hastings and the cold-blooded murder of his wife and daughter. His sole aim is the justice, by any means possible, or the grieving man. I loved the performances, the story, the direction, and the experience derived from it. Believe me, it will depress you for a while.


1. Take Shelter (2011)

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It is abundantly unclear to me as to why this movie or this performance isn’t talked about more. Curtis is a middle-aged contract worker, who of late develops acute symptoms of Schizophrenia, a disease also suffered by his besieged mother, around the same age as his. Hallucinations substantiate with his gnawing obsession at reviving his long abandoned storm shelter. His vivid nightmares, each associating him to a close person in his life, disseminate his entire life, which result in him losing his job, and deemed a mental patient. It is still mystery to me why Shannon didn’t take the Golden statue home, and why Nichols wasn’t nominated for his direction.

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