Sean Penn

An American actor, screenwriter and film director, also known for his political and social activism. He is a two-time Academy Award winner for his roles in Mystic River (2003) and Milk (2008), as well as the recipient of a Golden Globe Award for the former and a Screen Actors Guild Award for the latter. Penn began his acting career in television with a brief appearance in a 1974 episode of Little House on the Prairie, directed by his father Leo Penn. Following his film debut in 1981's Taps and a diverse range of film roles in the 1980s, Penn emerged as a prominent leading actor with the 1995 drama film Dead Man Walking, for which he earned his first Academy Award nomination and the Best Actor Award at the Berlin Film Festival. Penn subsequently received another two Oscar nominations for Sweet and Lowdown (1999) and I Am Sam (2001), before winning his first Academy Award for Best Actor in 2003 for Mystic River and a second one in 2008 for Milk. He has also won a Best Actor Award of the Cannes Film Festival for She's So Lovely (1997), and two Best Actor Awards at the Venice Film Festival for Hurlyburly (1998) and 21 Grams (2003). Penn made his feature film directorial debut with 1991's The Indian Runner, followed by the drama film The Crossing Guard (1995) and the mystery film The Pledge (2001). In 2002, Penn directed one of the 11 segments of 11'09"01 September 11, a compilation film made in response to the September 11 attacks. In 2007, Penn directed his fourth feature ...

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Dead Man Walking (1995)

DepressingHeartbreakingEmotionalTear-jerker

A death row inmate turns for spiritual guidance to a local nun in the days leading up to his scheduled execution for the murders of a young couple.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Tim Robbins
CAST:  Susan Sarandon  •  Sean Penn  •  Robert Prosky  •  Raymond J. Barry

A death row inmate turns for spiritual guidance to a local nun in the days leading up to his scheduled execution for the murders of a young couple.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Tim Robbins
CAST:  Susan Sarandon  •  Sean Penn  •  Robert Prosky  •  Raymond J. Barry

Into the Wild (2007)

AdventurousThought provokingInspiringBeautiful

After graduating from Emory University in 1992, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity, and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Sean Penn
CAST:  Emile Hirsch  •  Marcia Gay Harden  •  William Hurt  •  Jena Malone

After graduating from Emory University in 1992, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity, and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Sean Penn
CAST:  Emile Hirsch  •  Marcia Gay Harden  •  William Hurt  •  Jena Malone

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)

EnjoyableAdventurousThought provokingUplifting

A timid magazine photo manager who lives life vicariously through daydreams embarks on a true-life adventure when a negative goes missing.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Ben Stiller
CAST:  Ben Stiller  •  Kristen Wiig  •  Patton Oswalt  •  Shirley MacLaine

A timid magazine photo manager who lives life vicariously through daydreams embarks on a true-life adventure when a negative goes missing.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Ben Stiller
CAST:  Ben Stiller  •  Kristen Wiig  •  Patton Oswalt  •  Shirley MacLaine

The Tree of Life (2011)

Thought provokingBeautifulBoringSlow moving

The impressionistic story of a Texas family in the 1950s. The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father. Jack finds ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Terrence Malick
CAST:  Brad Pitt  •  Sean Penn  •  Jessica Chastain  •  Fiona Shaw

The impressionistic story of a Texas family in the 1950s. The film follows the life journey of the eldest son, Jack, through the innocence of childhood to his disillusioned adult years as he tries to reconcile a complicated relationship with his father. Jack finds ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Terrence Malick
CAST:  Brad Pitt  •  Sean Penn  •  Jessica Chastain  •  Fiona Shaw

Being John Malkovich (1999)

OriginalCleverBrainyBrilliant

One day at work, unsuccessful puppeteer Craig finds a portal into the head of actor John Malkovich. The portal soon becomes a passion for anybody who enters its mad and controlling world of overtaking another human body.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Spike Jonze
CAST:  John Malkovich  •  John Cusack  •  Cameron Diaz  •  Mary Kay Place

One day at work, unsuccessful puppeteer Craig finds a portal into the head of actor John Malkovich. The portal soon becomes a passion for anybody who enters its mad and controlling world of overtaking another human body.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Spike Jonze
CAST:  John Malkovich  •  John Cusack  •  Cameron Diaz  •  Mary Kay Place

The Human Experiment (2013)

A documentary that explores the potential dangers of toxic chemicals in consumer products and the recent spike in unexplained health phenomena.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Dana Nachman
CAST:  Sean Penn

A documentary that explores the potential dangers of toxic chemicals in consumer products and the recent spike in unexplained health phenomena.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Dana Nachman
CAST:  Sean Penn

21 Grams (2003)

DepressingHeartbreakingEmotionalTear-jerker

Paul Rivers, an ailing mathematician lovelessly married to an English émigré; Christina Peck, an upper-middle-class suburban housewife and mother of two girls; and Jack Jordan, a born-again ex-con, are brought together by a terrible accident that changes their lives.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Alejandro González Iñárritu
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Naomi Watts  •  Benicio del Toro  •  Danny Huston

Paul Rivers, an ailing mathematician lovelessly married to an English émigré; Christina Peck, an upper-middle-class suburban housewife and mother of two girls; and Jack Jordan, a born-again ex-con, are brought together by a terrible accident that changes their lives.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Alejandro González Iñárritu
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Naomi Watts  •  Benicio del Toro  •  Danny Huston

All the King's Men (2006)

The story of an idealist's rise to power in the world of Louisiana politics and the corruption that leads to his ultimate downfall. Based on the1946 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel written by Robert Penn Warren, loosely based on the story of real-life politician Huey Long.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Steven Zaillian
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Jude Law  •  Kate Winslet  •  Patricia Clarkson

The story of an idealist's rise to power in the world of Louisiana politics and the corruption that leads to his ultimate downfall. Based on the1946 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel written by Robert Penn Warren, loosely based on the story of real-life politician Huey Long.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Steven Zaillian
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Jude Law  •  Kate Winslet  •  Patricia Clarkson

At Close Range (1986)

Brad Whitewood Jr. lives in rural Pennsylvania and has few prospects. Against his mother's wishes, he seeks out his estranged father, the head of a gang of thieves in a nearby town. Though his new girlfriend supports his criminal ambitions, Brad Jr. soon learns ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  James Foley
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Christopher Walken  •  Mary Stuart Masterson  •  Chris Penn

Brad Whitewood Jr. lives in rural Pennsylvania and has few prospects. Against his mother's wishes, he seeks out his estranged father, the head of a gang of thieves in a nearby town. Though his new girlfriend supports his criminal ambitions, Brad Jr. soon learns ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  James Foley
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Christopher Walken  •  Mary Stuart Masterson  •  Chris Penn

Bad Boys (1983)

Mick O'Brien is a young Chicago street thug torn between a life of petty crime and the love of his girlfriend. But when the heist of a local drug dealer goes tragically wrong Mick is sentenced to a brutal juvenile prison where violence is a rite of passage and ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Rick Rosenthal
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Reni Santoni  •  Jim Moody  •  Eric Gurry

Mick O'Brien is a young Chicago street thug torn between a life of petty crime and the love of his girlfriend. But when the heist of a local drug dealer goes tragically wrong Mick is sentenced to a brutal juvenile prison where violence is a rite of passage and ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Rick Rosenthal
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Reni Santoni  •  Jim Moody  •  Eric Gurry

Before Night Falls (2000)

Spanning several decades, this powerful biopic offers a glimpse into the life of famed Cuban poet and novelist Reinaldo Arenas, an artist who was vilified for his homosexuality in Fidel Castro's Cuba.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Julian Schnabel
CAST:  Diego Luna  •  Javier Bardem  •  Olivier Martinez  •  Andrea Di Stefano

Spanning several decades, this powerful biopic offers a glimpse into the life of famed Cuban poet and novelist Reinaldo Arenas, an artist who was vilified for his homosexuality in Fidel Castro's Cuba.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Julian Schnabel
CAST:  Diego Luna  •  Javier Bardem  •  Olivier Martinez  •  Andrea Di Stefano

Carlito's Way (1993)

ViolentAction-packedClassicThrilling

A Puerto-Rican ex-con, just released from prison, pledges to stay away from drugs and violence despite the pressure around him, and lead a better life outside NYC.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Brian De Palma
CAST:  Al Pacino  •  Sean Penn  •  Penelope Ann Miller  •  John Leguizamo

A Puerto-Rican ex-con, just released from prison, pledges to stay away from drugs and violence despite the pressure around him, and lead a better life outside NYC.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Brian De Palma
CAST:  Al Pacino  •  Sean Penn  •  Penelope Ann Miller  •  John Leguizamo

Casualties of War (1989)

During the Vietnam War, a soldier finds himself the outsider of his own squad when they unnecessarily kidnap a female villager.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Brian De Palma
CAST:  Michael J. Fox  •  Sean Penn  •  Don Harvey  •  John C. Reilly

During the Vietnam War, a soldier finds himself the outsider of his own squad when they unnecessarily kidnap a female villager.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Brian De Palma
CAST:  Michael J. Fox  •  Sean Penn  •  Don Harvey  •  John C. Reilly

Crackers (1984)

Garvey is a San Francisco pawnshop operator. His unemployed and criminal friends Dillard, Turtle and Weslake, team up with Boardwalk, a local pimp, to burgle Garvey's shop while the owner is out of town. During the elaborate planning process, Dillard falls for a ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Louis Malle
CAST:  Donald Sutherland  •  Jack Warden  •  Sean Penn  •  Wallace Shawn

Garvey is a San Francisco pawnshop operator. His unemployed and criminal friends Dillard, Turtle and Weslake, team up with Boardwalk, a local pimp, to burgle Garvey's shop while the owner is out of town. During the elaborate planning process, Dillard falls for a ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Louis Malle
CAST:  Donald Sutherland  •  Jack Warden  •  Sean Penn  •  Wallace Shawn

Dogtown and Z-Boys (2001)

EnjoyableRealLighthearted

This award-winning, thrilling story is about a group of discarded kids who revolutionized skateboarding and shaped the attitude and culture of modern day extreme sports. Featuring old skool skating footage, exclusive interviews and a blistering rock soundtrack, ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Stacy Peralta
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Jay Adams  •  Henry Rollins  •  Steve Caballero

This award-winning, thrilling story is about a group of discarded kids who revolutionized skateboarding and shaped the attitude and culture of modern day extreme sports. Featuring old skool skating footage, exclusive interviews and a blistering rock soundtrack, ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Stacy Peralta
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Jay Adams  •  Henry Rollins  •  Steve Caballero

Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982)

FunnyMindlessRealCrude

Based on the real-life adventures chronicled by Cameron Crowe, Fast Times follows a group of high school students growing up in Southern California. Stacy Hamilton and Mark Ratner are looking for a love interest, and are helped along by their older classmates, ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Amy Heckerling
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Jennifer Jason Leigh  •  Judge Reinhold  •  Robert Romanus

Based on the real-life adventures chronicled by Cameron Crowe, Fast Times follows a group of high school students growing up in Southern California. Stacy Hamilton and Mark Ratner are looking for a love interest, and are helped along by their older classmates, ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Amy Heckerling
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Jennifer Jason Leigh  •  Judge Reinhold  •  Robert Romanus

I Am Sam (2001)

UpliftingEmotionalThought provokingTear-jerker

Sam, a neurodivergent man, has a daughter with a homeless woman who abandons them when they leave the hospital, leaving Sam to raise Lucy on his own. But as Lucy grows up, Sam's limitations as a parent start to become a problem and the authorities take her away. ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Jessie Nelson
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Michelle Pfeiffer  •  Dakota Fanning  •  Dianne Wiest

Sam, a neurodivergent man, has a daughter with a homeless woman who abandons them when they leave the hospital, leaving Sam to raise Lucy on his own. But as Lucy grows up, Sam's limitations as a parent start to become a problem and the authorities take her away. ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Jessie Nelson
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Michelle Pfeiffer  •  Dakota Fanning  •  Dianne Wiest

It's All About Love (2003)

SuspensefulRomanticEmotionalFuturistic

The story of two lovers and their attempts to save their relationship in a near-future world on the brink of cosmic collapse. John, and world-famous ice skating star, Elena, are about to sign divorce papers when they realise that, in spite of everything happening ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Thomas Vinterberg
CAST:  Joaquin Phoenix  •  Claire Danes  •  Sean Penn  •  Douglas Henshall

The story of two lovers and their attempts to save their relationship in a near-future world on the brink of cosmic collapse. John, and world-famous ice skating star, Elena, are about to sign divorce papers when they realise that, in spite of everything happening ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Thomas Vinterberg
CAST:  Joaquin Phoenix  •  Claire Danes  •  Sean Penn  •  Douglas Henshall

Mystic River (2003)

DepressingHeartbreakingEmotionalThought provoking

The lives of three men who were childhood friends are shattered when one of them has a family tragedy.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Clint Eastwood
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Tim Robbins  •  Kevin Bacon  •  Marcia Gay Harden

The lives of three men who were childhood friends are shattered when one of them has a family tragedy.  (more)

DIRECTION:  Clint Eastwood
CAST:  Sean Penn  •  Tim Robbins  •  Kevin Bacon  •  Marcia Gay Harden

Pauly Shore Is Dead (2003)

Hollywood comedian/actor Pauly Shore loses everything: his house, nobody in Hollywood wants to represent him, he moves back home with his mom and is now parking cars at the Comedy Store. Then one night when he's up in his mom's loft, a dead famous comedian appears ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Pauly Shore
CAST:  Jaime Bergman  •  Todd Bridges  •  Pauly Shore  •  Whoopi Goldberg

Hollywood comedian/actor Pauly Shore loses everything: his house, nobody in Hollywood wants to represent him, he moves back home with his mom and is now parking cars at the Comedy Store. Then one night when he's up in his mom's loft, a dead famous comedian appears ...  (more)

DIRECTION:  Pauly Shore
CAST:  Jaime Bergman  •  Todd Bridges  •  Pauly Shore  •  Whoopi Goldberg
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