Ordinary Magic (1993)
Ryan graduates from TV soap Fifteen and lands in this Canadian drama. An adorable seventeen-year-old Ryan plays Ganesh/Jeffrey, who’s been raised in India by his father. But when pops uh, pops his clogs, Ganesh is sent to live with his aunt in Canada.
Problem is, when he arrives he discovers her house is going to be ripped to pieces to make way for a ski resort (uhuh). Ganesh goes on hunger strike in protest. Aww, cuteness.
Quip Count: Your guess is as good as ours – it’s near impossible to get a copy of this. We’re gonna make an informed guess and say “low”.
Sabrina The Teenage Witch (1996)
Before Sabrina was a TV show, it started life in this made-for-TV movie. Ryan crops up as the hunky high school stud Seth, who mini-witch Sabrina goes all gaga over. Problem is, catty Katie’s already got her claws in him.
But wait, Sabrina’s a witch, so she can use magic to get her man. Which she does, impressing Seth by, uh, winning a track race thanks to a nifty hex, and getting him to ask her out. Will it all end happily ever after?
Quip Count: Minimum. Most of the good lines go to the talking cat.
The Alarmist (1997)
Every kid’s worst nightmare comes to life when Ryan’s teen Howard walks in on his mother being orally pleasured by her boyfriend in the kitchen. But wait, it gets worse – the boyfriend’s none other than moustache-loving David Arquette! His eyes! His eeeeyes!
That’s about all you need to know about the movie.
Quip Count: If Arquette would just shut the hell up for a minute we’ll attempt an assessment… Okay, Ry, give it your best... “I was just gonna grab a snack, I guess that’s what you’re doing too.” Fuh. Alright, Arquette, you do the talking.
Big Monster On Campus (1998)
Yowsers. Reynolds clearly had a bit of a mancrush on Edward Scissorhands in the late nineties. Or, wait... Okay, he’s just dressing up for a movie. See, his character's just had an emergency brain transplant after getting his head bashed by jocks. Sadly, he's received the old grey matter of a serial killer.
“He has an electric personality,” says the tag line. Oof. It’s Frankenstein for the American Pie generation. Only dumber. And greener. And, like, less sexy .
Quip Count: “I… I… I… stink.” Good one, Ry.
That’s Mr Dick to you. Putting a teenage spin on the Watergate scandal, Kirsten Dunst and Michelle Williams are revealed as the mysterious Deep Throat informants who leaked information to The Washington Post regarding Nixon’s involvement in the scandal.
Reynolds pitches up as airhead Chip , the son of a Whitehouse employee. There are some very unattractive kissing scenes with Dunst, which culminate in some very sensual hair-in-face action.
Quip Count: “Beer bong?” pretty much sums it up.
Finders Fee (2001)
Reynolds goes head to head with Darth Vader! Well, his voice anyway, starring alongside James Earl Jones in this card trick drama. When Ryan’s mate finds a wallet containing a $6m winning lottery ticket, he and his friends play to win big. Really big.
Reportedly this really happened to director Jeff Probst. As a sidebar, the flick won the Golden Space Needle Award at the 2001 Seattle International Film Festival.
Quip Count: Ryan talks in this movie? Sorry, we got distracted by Sir Jones.
Van Wilder (2002)
A forever young student (that’d be the titular Wilder) wants to stay in college forever. He’s the king on campus, renowned for throwing the best parties and being friends to everyone. But after six years of the same routine, Van’s pa decides to stop footing the bill. Can Van grow up?
“I was terrified,” Reynolds admits of heading up a National Lampoon flick. “The movie's definitely not National Lampoon's The Piano, but I spent a lot of time working on it.”
Quip Count: Quip overload! “Crazy kids with their crazy VDs” takes the biscuit.
Buying The Cow (2002)
DTV comedy starring commitment-phobe Jerry O’Connell, who hits the dating scene when his girlfriend starts pressuring him to propose. (Sigh.) Reynolds is the fun-loving best bud who convinces the fellow to have another crack at dating.
No wonder it bypassed cinemas.
Quip Count: Zero. Zilch. Zipp.
Harold & Kumar Get The Munchies (2004)
Reynolds pitches up to add a little more chaos to Harold and Kumar’s chaos cake, mistaking the duo for doctors and bustling them into the middle of an operating room.
Suitably bemused when the chaps suggest getting the patient high on marijuana in preparation for surgery, Reynolds plays his doctor straight (with hints of gay) and a healthy side of ham.
Quip Count: “Soft chocolate lips” gets us every time. Despite having mere minutes of screen time, Reynolds manages to pack a few in.
Blade: Trinity (2004)
With Wesley Snipes now well and truly bored of being a vampire superhero (what’s his problem?!) Reynolds steps in with Jessica Biel to sex up the franchise and bring its average age back down to the mid-20s.
He’s buffed up considerably here, wielding all manner of weapons and spitting out one-liners like there’s no tomorrow. He’s frequently shirtless, though Biel isn’t.
Quip Count: Wisecracks of mostly wince-inducing quality here. Worst? "Unlike typical vampires, her fangs are located in her vagina." Usch.
The Amityville Horror (2005)
Horror remake that adds a lick of paint to the 1979 original and marks Reynolds’ first foray into full-blooded terror . He’s George Lutz, married father of two who moves into a dream family home that may have been the setting for a brutal mass murder.
Reynolds calls the original the “greatest American haunted house story ever told”, and stuck with the remake from the very beginning. He worked out even more to make himself a hulking, scary figure.
Quip Count: “Houses don't kill people. People kill people.” Shudder.
Reynolds is back fending off responsibility and adulthood in this restaurant-set chuckler.
“I just saw a lot of debauchery,” he says of his teen years working as a waiter, which helped him prepare for his part as a waiter in this comedy. “I definitely found that to be pretty true of these sort of restaurant dynamics. You get this little mini ecosystem. It's Gilligan's Island in a restaurant. I definitely related to that dynamic.”
Quip Count: “Yes, I am indeed a pervert. Does that offend you?” Hmm, a little off colour here, Ry.
Just Friends (2005)
Is it written in all Hollywood contracts that comedy actors have to put on a fat suit at least once in their career? Following the likes of Gwynie and Amy Adams, Reynolds piles on the (prosthetic) pounds for this romcom as a newly hot ex-fattie who bumps into his old school crush.
“Because it’s really hard to lose 45 pounds in an hour without cutting an actual limb off. So yeah, no, it was a labour of love though. I loved wearing that suit,” he jokes.
Quip Count: More like lame count here, to be honest.
Smokin Aces (2006)
Reynolds gets tough shooting a gun (A LOT) as a rookie FBI agent, who is attempting to keep a snitch (Jeremy Piven) alive after he decides to reveal mob secrets in court. Making his job all the more difficult is a collection of assassins – including Alicia Keys.
“It was a pretty raucous set,” Reynolds says. “It’s weird when you’re walking past people who are wearing outfits built entirely of blood.”
Quip Count: We spent most of the film deaf from all the gunfire… Sorry...
The Nines (2007)
Just what is The Nines all about? Piling mysteries on top of enigmas, Reynolds stars as an actor placed under house arrest after crashing his car. Soon, he starts finding notes he doesn’t remember writing and hears, like, weird noises.
Can Reynolds clear it up for us? “I felt like, not to be so esoteric about it, but this is a story about the puppet and the puppeteer being one in the same.” Uh, thanks.
Quip Count: “I'm kind of having a medical situation. I don't have a belly button.” Haha! Wait, is that meant to be funny?
Chaos Theory (2008)
Reynolds stops shaving and puts on a pair of glasses to play Frank Allen, a lecturer who plans each and every day down to the last minute. But when his wife changes the clocks, his entire day is thrown out of whack.
Sadly, Chaos Theory is just a little bit too out there for its own good. Director Marcos Siega now works on TV directing vampires in True Blood and The Vampire Diaries .
Quip Count: “Do you know what doctors call riders that don't wear a helmet? Organ donors.” Meh.
Definitely, Maybe (2008)
“Most romantic comedies that you read it’s just painfully obvious within the first three pages what’s going to happen,” muses Reynolds. “With this script I had no idea what was going to happen up until the last three pages. I was absolutely riveted. So for a romantic comedy it was certainly the most unusual thing I’d ever read.”
Here, Reynolds stars opposite awesome-actress-in-the-making Abigail Breslin as a father going through a divorce.
Quip Count: Breslin banter is a definitely highlight.
Fireflies In The Garden (2008)
Emotions run high as Reynolds takes on an unusually dramatic role, grieving the loss of his mother (Julia Roberts) who died in a tragic car accident. Having Roberts as his mother proved a bit confusing for some.
“They age her up and in flashbacks she’s her own age,” he says. “I tell people that all the time because they’re like: ‘Wow, you’re doing a film with Julia Roberts! You’re going to make such a cute couple…’ And I have to say: ‘No, she’s my mother.’ They don’t quite understand.”
Quip Count: There’s not much room for quotability in the sea of sorrow.
You know that really hip older guy you all know and want to be? In Adventureland , that guy is Reynolds. He’s Mike Connell, a worker at the titular amusement park who just so happens to be diddling Twilight ’s Kirsten Stewart.
“It was fun,” Ryan says. “I like that there are no real villains or heroes in this movie. It's a lot like life. People have their complexities. They have their heroic moments and their villainous moments, too.”
Quip Count: Like a true gent, Reynolds lets the good lines go to his younger co-stars.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)
Critics savaged it, but Reynolds was one of the better things in this attempt to flesh out Wolverine’s back story on the big screen. As Deadpool, Reynolds quips/fights his way through some impressive action scenes.
Says Reynolds: “I love that character. I love that franchise. I love that whole vibe so I was happy to jump in there and do it.” A Deadpool spin-off is in the works.
Quip Count: “Great. Stuck in an elevator with five guys on a high-protein diet.” Reynolds gets in a few zingers before his mouth is sewn up for the finale.
The Proposal (2009)
Sandra Bullock’s a bitch. Or, she is in The Proposal . Playing Reynolds’ control freak boss, she forces him to marry her so that she can become a US citizen and keep her job. Of course, when she travels with him to meet his family, her frozen heart starts to thaw.
They both get incredibly naked together in the film’s stand-out daft moment. “Sadly, my first and last nude scene got laughs,” says Bullock, “I had to be very secure with that. It was all about choreography.”
Quip Count: Quips R Us! “We were in the middle of talking about you... for the last 3 years.” Yeah, he’s bitter.
A movie set entirely in a box that manages to think outside of it? That’s Buried , a claustrophobic thriller that has Reynolds trapped inside a coffin for a little over 90 minutes. No breaks away, no flashbacks, no nothing.
This is all Reynolds, and he pulls it off brilliantly. “It was pretty miserable,” the actor laughs. “I’ll never complain ever again on another film set as long as I live.”
Quip Count: Despite being buried in a coffin and fighting for his life, Reynolds gets in a few wry digs. Gallows humour abounds.