Kiefer Sutherland: 5 Awesome Performances And 5 That Sucked

Jack Bauer's finest hours.

As the son of acclaimed Canadian actor Donald Sutherland, Kiefer Sutherland always had a lot to live up to; renowned today for his distinctly husky voice, gruff characteristics and unabashed charisma, there's no denying that Sutherland has managed to mark himself out as a wildly versatile talent. Indeed, Sutherland's appeal doesn't extend from his ability to play a single character type, despite the fact that many seem intent to peg him as a one-dimensional action star. Instead, Sutherland has succeeded in bringing all kinds of varied characters to life. Best known today for his role as Agent Jack Bauer in TV's 24 (a character so popular that Sutherland's performance has near on overshadowed everything else in his filmography, for good or for worse), Sutherland is also remembered for an array of supporting characters in movies such as Stand By Me, The Lost Boys and Flatliners. His massively identifiable voice - gruff, worn; a voice of experience - has also opened to the door to a number of memorable turns. In Phone Booth, for example, his entire performance hinges on his ability to use his voice. Despite a number of good performances throughout the 80s and 90s, Sutherland's career eventually fell to the wayside when he started to take on too many supporting roles and very nearly compromised his potential as a leading man. When it all looked to be over, however, the script for 24 landed on his desk and... well, the rest is history. Despite the near-on iconic status he enjoys today, however, there are - as with any actor who's put their time in - misfires, ill-judged performances, and a few curious oddities to be found in and amongst all the good stuff. To celebrate the release of his latest movie, the blockbuster Pompeii (released in the UK) and the return of 24 next week, join us as we look back at 5 awesome Kiefer Sutherland performances and 5 that sucked...

Sam Hill is an ardent cinephile and has been writing about film professionally since 2008. He harbours a particular fondness for western and sci-fi movies.