As Halloween Ends, let’s rank the best performances of Jamie Lee Curtis

From horror scream queen to all-around screen legend, we're counting down Jamie Lee Curtis' best roles

As Halloween Ends, let’s rank the best performances of Jamie Lee Curtis
(Clockwise from top left:) Halloween (Photo: Compass International Pictures), Trading Places (Screenshot: Paramount Pictures), Everything Everywhere All At Once (Photo: Allyson Riggs/A24), True Lies (Screenshot: 20th Century Fox) Graphic: The A.V. Club

Jamie Lee Curtis invented horror cinema. Okay, not really, but she did pioneer an important slasher movie trope, starting with the 1978 classic Halloween. And she may as well have invented effortless sultriness (in True Lies), self-deprecating comedy (from Freaky Friday to Everything Everywhere All At Once), and the concept of being horny for foreign languages (A Fish Called Wanda). There’s seemingly very little the actor, producer, activist, and screen legend can’t do.

With so many varieties of films and performances under her belt, and with the arrival of Halloween Ends, the conclusion to the long-running horror franchise, we at The A.V. Club decided the time was right to take stock of Curtis’ best work. So read on to see where the likes of Trading Places, A Fish Called Wanda and, of course, the Halloween franchise rank.

previous arrow14. Perfect (1985) next arrow
[HQ] Jamie Lee Curtis & John Travolta Fitness Scene in “Perfect (1985)“ Director: James Bridges

The 1985 romantic drama is based on a series of articles published in Rolling Stone about the Los Angeles health club scene and how singles embraced it. The movie was released during the height of that 1980s exercise craze and stars Jamie Lee Curtis as Jessie Wilson, a ridiculously fit aerobics instructor who has some trust issues with journalists. This makes her initially wary of Adam Lawrence (John Travolta), a Rolling Stone reporter who wants to interview her about singles and the fitness scene. Jessie agrees and even becomes romantically involved with Adam, which causes him to lose his objectivity. She is furious when the heavily edited article is published, but she eventually comes to believe that Adam didn’t do her dirty and that his original article is not what ended up in the magazine. Perfect is far from perfect and didn’t give the box office a workout. But memes of when both actors were in peak physical condition are so common today that you would think the movie was a blockbuster. [Robert DeSalvo]

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