Brendan Gleeson

Actors

Brendan Gleeson (born March 29, 1955) is an Irish actor and director. He is the recipient of three IFTA Awards, two BIFA Awards, and an Emmy Award and has been nominated twice for a BAFTA Award and twice for a Golden Globe Award. He made his film debut in Jim Sheridan‘s The Field (1990), with Richard Harris, John Hurt, Sean Bean, Brenda Fricker and Tom Berenger.

He is best known for his performance as Alastor “Mad Eye” Moody in the Harry Potter films from 2005–2010, with Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Robbie Coltrane, Michael Gambon, Maggie Smith, Alan Rickman, Gary Oldman, and Ralph Fiennes.

His other films include Braveheart (1995), directed by and starring Mel Gibson; Neil Jordan‘s Michael Collins (1996), with Liam Neeson; Lake Placid (1999), with Oliver Platt, Bridget Fonda, Bill Pullman, and Betty White; Martin Scorsese‘s Gangs of New York (2002), with Leonardo DiCaprio, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Cameron Diaz; Anthony Minghella’s Cold Mountain (2003), with Jude Law, Nicole Kidman, Renée Zellweger, and Philip Seymour Hoffman; Wolfgang Peterson‘s Troy (2004), with Brad Pitt, Brian Cox, Bean, and Peter O’Toole; M. Night Shyamalan’s The Village (2004), with Bryce Dallas Howard, Joaquin Phoenix, Adrien Brody, William Hurt, and Sigourney Weaver; Sarah Gavron’s Suffragette (2015), with Carey Mulligan, Helena Bonham Carter, Anne-Marie Duff, and Meryl Streep; Paddington 2 (2018), and Joel & Ethan Coen‘s The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), with James Franco, Zoe Kazan, Liam Neeson, Tim Blake Nelson, Tom Waits, Tyne Daly, Bill Heck, Grainger Hines, Harry Melling, Jonjo O’Neill, Chelcie Ross, and Saul Rubinek.

He’s had leading roles in such films as Martin McDonagh‘s In Bruges (2008), with Collin Farrell and Feinnes; John Michael McDonagh‘s The Guard (2011), with Don Cheadle, Mark Strong, and Liam Cunningham; Cavalry (2014), with Chris O’Dowd, Kelly Reilly, Aidan Gillen, Dylan Moran, M. Emmet Walsh and Isaach de Bankolé; and Hempstead (2017), with Diane Keaton, James Norton, Lesley Manville, Jason Watkins, Hugh Skinner, and Simon Callow.

He has starred as detective Bill Hodges in the television adaptation of Stephen King’s Mr. Mercedes. He won an Emmy Award in 2009 for his portrayal of Winston Churchill in the television film Into the Storm. In 2020, he was listed at number 18 on The Irish Times list of Ireland’s greatest film actors. He is the father of actors Domhnall Gleeson and Brian Gleeson.

Each review will be linked to the title below.

(*seen originally in theaters)

(**seen rereleased in theaters)

  • Dear Sarah (1989) – directed by Frank Cvitanovich – TV movie
  • Hard Shoulder (1990) – directed by Mark Kilroy – TV movie
  • The Field (1990) – directed by Jim Sheridan
  • The Treaty (1991) – directed by Jonathan Lewis – TV movie
  • Saint Oscar (1991) – directed by Guy Slater – TV movie
  • Far and Away (1992) – directed by Ron Howard
  • Conneely’s Choice (1992) – directed by Barra de Bhaldraithe – short
  • Into the West – directed by Mike Newell
  • The Bargain Shop (1992) – directed by Johnny Gogan
  • M.A.N.: Matrix Adjusted Normal (1992) – directed by Connor O’Mahoney – short
  • Braveheart (1995) – directed by Mel Gibson
  • The Life of Reilly (1995) – directed by Alan Archbold – short
  • Kidnapped (1995) – directed by Ivan Passer – TV movie
  • Michael Collins (1996) – directed by Neil Jordan
  • Trojan Eddie (1996) – directed by Gillies MacKinnon
  • Spaghetti Slow (1996) – directed by Valerio Jalongo – aka Mesaggi quasi segreti – Italy/Ireland
  • Angela Mooney (1996) – directed by Tommy McArdle – aka Angela Mooney Dies Again
  • Turbulence (1997) – directed by Robert Butler
  • The Butcher Boy (1997) – directed by Neil Jordan
  • The Break (1997) – directed by Robert Dornhelm
  • I Went Down (1997) – directed by Paddy Breathnach
  • Before I Sleep (1997) – directed by Paul Mercier – short
  • The General (1998) – directed by John Boorman
  • This Is My Father (1998) – directed by Paul Quinn
  • The Tale of Sweety Barrett (1998) – directed by Stephen Bradley
  • Making the Cut (1998) – directed by Martyn Friend – TV movie
  • Lake Placid (1999) – directed by Steve Miner
  • My Life So Far (1999) – directed by Hugh Hudson
  • Mission: Impossible II (2000) – directed by John Woo
  • Harrison’s Flowers (2000) – directed by Élie Chouraqui
  • Saltwater (2000) – directed by Connor McPherson
  • Wild About Harry (2000) – directed by Declan Lowney
  • The Tailor of Panama (2001) – directed by John Boorman
  • A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001) – directed by Steven Spielberg
  • The Cake (2001) – directed by Jennifer Keegan – short
  • 28 Days Later (2002) – directed by Danny Boyle
  • Gangs of New York (2002)* – directed by Martin Scorsese
  • Dark Blue (2002) – directed by Ron Shelton
  • Cold Mountain (2003) – directed by Anthony Minghella
  • Wild Stories: The Devoted Friend (2003) – directed by Maurice Joyce – TV short
  • In My Country (2004) – directed by John Boorman
  • Troy (2004)* – directed by Wolfgang Peterson
  • The Village (2004)* – directed by M. Night Shyamalan
  • Six Shooter (2004) – directed by Martin McDonagh – short
  • Kingdom of Heaven (2005) – directed by Ridley Scott
  • Breakfast on Pluto (2005) – directed by Neil Jordan
  • Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)* – directed by Mike Newell
  • Studs (2006) – directed by Paul Mercier
  • The Tiger’s Tail (2006) – directed by John Boorman
  • Black Irish (2007) – directed by Brad Gann
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007)* – directed by David Yates
  • Beowulf (2007) – directed by Robert Zemeckis
  • In Bruges (2008) – directed by Martin McDonagh
  • The Secret of Kells (2008) – directed by Tomm Moore & Nora Twomey
  • Into the Storm (2009) – directed by Thaddeus O’Sullivan
  • Perrier’s Bounty (2009) – directed by Ian Fitzgibbon
  • Green Zone (2010) – directed by Paul Greengrass
  • Noreen (2010) – directed by Domhnall Gleeson – short
  • Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010)* – directed by David Yates
  • The Guard (2011) – directed by John Michael McDonagh
  • Albert Nobbs (2011) – directed by Rodrigo García
  • The Cup (2011) – directed by Simon Wincer
  • Safe House (2012) – directed by Daniel Espinosa
  • The Raven (2012) – directed by James McTeigue
  • The Pirates! Band of Misfits (2012)* – directed by Peter Lord & Jeff Newitt – aka The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists!
  • So You Want to Be a Pirate! (2012) – directed by Jay Grace – short
  • The Company You Keep (2012) – directed by Robert Redford
  • The Smurfs 2 (2013) – directed by Raja Gosnell
  • The Grand Seduction (2013) – directed by Don McKellar
  • Calvary (2014) – directed by John Michael McDonagh
  • Edge of Tomorrow (2014) – directed by Doug Liman
  • Stonehearst Asylum (2014) – directed by Brad Anderson
  • Song of the Sea (2014) – directed by Tomm Moore
  • The Money (2014) – directed by Justin Chadwick – TV movie
  • Pursuit (2015) – directed by Paul Mercier
  • In the Heart of the Sea (2015) – directed by Ron Howard
  • Suffragette (2015) – directed by Sarah Gavron
  • Alone in Berlin (2016) – directed by Vincent Perez
  • Trespass Against Us (2016) – directed by Adam Smith
  • Assassin’s Creed (2016) – directed by Justin Kurzel
  • Live by Night (2016) – directed by Ben Affleck
  • Hampstead (2017) – directed by Joel Hopkins
  • Paddington 2 (2017) – directed by Paul King
  • Captain Morten and the Spider Queen (2018) – directed by Kasper Jancis, Henry Nicholson, & Riho Unt
  • Psychic (2018) – also director – short
  • The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018) – directed by Joel & Ethan Coen
  • Frankie (2019) – directed by Ira Sachs
  • The Tragedy of Macbeth (2021) – directed by Joel Coen