My Top 50 Handsome Actors (Pt 1)



Since listing my 50 most beautiful actresses I have been asked to provide a similar list of the 50 most handsome men. And that creates a problem for me. Being heterosexual, how do I go about naming the men I find most sttractive? I don’t really think of ANY man as being particularly attractive, (although I recall in my punting days how I developed a ‘man-crush’ on a couple of jockeys that won me a lot of money), so how could I possibly make a list? Of course, I could ask my wife to choose, but then that would be HER list, not mine. I finally arrived at a solution – sort of. I would imagine I had been given the choice of changing my appearance to look like any movie star that has ever lived. Who would I prefer to look like?

So that is how I have compiled this list, and I have no doubt that most women will HATE it, especially when I admit in advance that the following sex symbols have NOT been included – Clark Gable, Errol Flynn, Paul Newman, Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise, Orlando Bloom, Johnny Depp, Robert Redford or Mel Gibson! Why? Well, for all kinds of reasons: I wouldn’t fancy going through life with a moustache and ears like Gable; Errol looked just plain silly to me, although that might just have been his appalling acting; Newman usually looked unhappy, sort of tattooed with a permanent sulky bottom lip; Pitt, Cruise, Bloom & Depp look quite bland, and Redford and Gibson just over-rated imposters! You might ask, ‘Why would he rather look like, say, Robert Mitchum than Mel Gibson?’ The simple answer is (to me) Mitchum seems like a likeable guy, Gibson looks like he probably likes himself more than he likes other people. Of course, I could be wrong. Feel free to tell me so.

Anyway, here is part one, numbers 50 down to 31:


#50   Fess Parker

Okay, so I admit it. I was a Davy Crockett fan when I was a kid, but Fess Parker always exuded integrity and he was tough enough.

#49   Gardner McKay

He did not have a huge career, but Gardner McKay was an adventurer who attracted the opposite sex effortlessly.

#48   Liam Neeson

Tough guy with charm. Built like a block of flats.

#47   Jim Brown

One very cool dude. A gun football player too.

#46   Aldo Ray

Usually played a gentle-hearted type. Distinctive, unusual voice.

#45   Efrem Zimbalist Jr.

Honesty, intelligence & integrity personified.

#44   Sean Bean

A no-nonsense Irishman with a twinkle in his eye. Fine actor too.

#43   Russell Crowe

Not traditionally handsome by any means, but as a gladiator he has no peers.

#42 Audie Murphy

Like Fess Parker, another of my boyhood heroes.

#41   Ben Affleck

One of the stronger faces of the new brigade.

#40   Richard Gere

Much better looking without the silver hair.

#39  John Garfield

He had a kind of insolence that I liked.

#38   Robert Mitchum

A lot of women find him ‘sleazy’. I thought he never took himself seriously which made a pleasant change.

#37   Denzel Washington

Class, all class.

#36   Matt Damon

Looks like what he is – smart and nice.

#35   Ben Gazzara

Intelligent, a little arrogant, convincing. And under-rated too.

#34   Harrison Ford

At the outset he was a genuine matinee idol.

#33   Robert Taylor

He had the matinee idol looks for decades. An icon.

#32   Burt Reynolds

Arrogant, mischievous, tongue-in-cheek, likeable.

#31   James Garner

Another of my childhood heroes – Brett Maverick. Legend.


Part 2 (30-11) on Feb 8.


  1. I used to watch Gardner McKay as a kid in Adventures in Paradise. Even then, I noticed how handsome he was. Couple years ago, I looked him up and found a book he wrote, after he got sick. (cancer) He was married and living in Hawaii. I got the book and it told how he gave up acting, etc. I think he could have had a huge career, but sailing was his thing. Exceptionally handsome as a I noticed as a little girl. I admire what he did. Very interesting read. (I have tried to find old videos of Adventures in Paradise)

  2. I’ve been thinking a lot about your selections here, and the depth I
    find beneath them. It’s not about, “he’s handsome, he’s not. Bye, bye,”
    but other qualities you see in their presence.

    • I am a firm believer that the most popular actors in movies are invariably the most ‘likeable’ ones. Looks only go so far. Unless there is some likeable quality below the surface, the public soon tire of them. Of course, much of that likeable quality can be the work of exceptional directors. Cary Grant, by all accounts, was a particularly mean man. A cheap-skate who even charged fans 15c a pop for his autograph, yet his directors managed to project him as a really nice fellow.

    • I remember that she was a blonde and starred opposite Kirk in ‘The Indian Fighter’ in 1955. Her dad was the British Ambassador to Bermuda (or something), where she was born. I think her folks were both English.

  3. Years ago I read that Hollywood tried to cover Kirk’s dimple, by
    putting something like putty in it, but decided to hell w/ it.
    I find son, Michael, far better looking; looks, and has coloring like
    Basque mother, but is combination of both.

    • Ha! My sister knew of my childhood dream, so when she went off to Tampa to live she mailed me a Davy Crockett hat! The only problem was that I was nearly FORTY by then and not game to wear it anywhere! I would much rather she had kidnapped Eleanor Parker and mailed her to me instead. Boy, was I ever keen on Eleanor.

  4. Your comment on not finding any man particularly attractive elicits
    my own response. Attractiveness, means that I can respond to another
    of my own sex, and to the opposite sex. Your selections are interesting; since I’m not that familiar w/ some. Aldo Ray, sexy lower
    lip. Mitchum and especially Garfield, very sexy. [Lucky for Lana!]
    Ben Gazzara, Ford, young and old, Gere, whose hair is good in any color. G. McKay, Jim Brown, F. Parker. [Thinking of Mitchum reminds me of Sean Penn.] Again for me, it’s that unusual look.
    Time to stop.

    • I must admit that my list was influenced by my childhood and teenage heroes. I really liked Aldo Ray in ‘Battle Cry’, Ben Gazzara in ‘The Strange One’, Jim Brown in ‘The Dirty Dozen’, Mitchum in just about everything he did, and at age 8 I would have KILLED for a Davy Crockett coonskin hat!

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