From Donnie Darko to Ambulance, Jake Gyllenhaal Can Do It All

From Donnie Darko to Ambulance, Jake Gyllenhaal Can Do It All

Whether you recognize Jake Gyllenhaal from his Donnie Darko days or got your first glimpse of him in Spider-Man: Far From Home, you can’t deny the man’s talent. Known for his, out-of-the-box, dark, indie thrillers, Jake Gyllenhaal has played a wide variety of characters over the years. Dedication is the name of the game when it comes to Jake’s acting. You can really see him transform into his characters, no matter who they are. The man has range. Honestly, it can be kind of unsettling sometimes. Think Lou Bloom from Nightcrawler. Creepy, right? It’s hard to pick just one of our favorite Jake Gyllenhaal characters but to be honest, our favorite Jake is Marvel press tour Jake. All those interviews with Tom Holland? Hilarious! Back again with Ambulance, Jake Gyllenhaal is here to show us acting prowess once more.

Ambulance Jake Gyllenhaal
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If you keep up with Mr. Gyllenhaal’s career like some of us here at THP, you know that he has a new movie coming up called Ambulance. Jake Gyllenhaal plays the charismatic career criminal/adoptive brother, Danny, opposite Yahya Abdul-Mateen II’s Will Sharp, a decorated veteran in need of cash to help pay his wife’s medical bills. What ensues is a heist for the ages, going awry, leading the two to steal, you guessed it, an ambulance. The action-thriller seems primed to keep us on our toes, heart-pounding, awaiting whatever comes next. We’re anxiously awaiting its release, set for February 2022, what about you?


Now, since we’re already thinking about Ambulance, Jake Gyllenhaal has played a lot of other cool characters we’re thinking about. He’s created a brand for himself playing all sorts of out-of-the-box, niche characters across many genres. We thought it would be fun to dive in and take a look back at some of Jake’s greatest hits.

Donnie Darko

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Perhaps one of Jake’s most well-known roles, Donnie Darko is a cult classic loved by many, many film enthusiasts and casual fans alike. The sci-fi/creepy thriller follows the titular character through his interactions with Frank, a giant bunny. It’s a film that people are still discussing and trying to understand even today, 20 years after its original release. This movie is a must-watch for Jake Gyllenhaal fans and movie fans alike!

Image Source: GIPHY


Image Source: GIPHY

Jake Gyllenhaal himself describes the main character, Lou Bloom, as a “coyote.” It’s evident in his physical appearance in this film combined with Lou’s less than savory behavior. We won’t give you any major spoilers, but Lou is manipulative and overall unsettling at best. Nightcrawler is probably one of the best examples of how Jake really transforms into his characters. He played the part extremely well. It’s hard to imagine the goofball who does interviews opposite literal ray of sunshine Tom Holland can play someone this unsettling.

Velvet Buzzsaw

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This indie horror film finds Jake Gyllenhaal playing Morf Vandewalt, a slightly snobbish art critic who faces the terrifying paintings of one Vetril Dease. Murder and art go hand in hand in this film, which also boasts other big names such as Zawe Ashton, Daveed Diggs, and Natalia Dyer. It’s definitely a more out-of-the-box horror film, but if you like scary movies and art, you should definitely check this one out.

Brokeback Mountain

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It would be an actual disservice to Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger if we made a list of Jake Gyllenhaal’s best roles and didn’t include Brokeback Mountain. Ang Lee directed this poignant, heartbreaking film and had us all feeling all the emotions over Ennis and Jack’s relationship. Not only is this film a showcase of Jake, and Heath’s, incredible talent, but it has become a landmark film in LGBTQA+ cinema.

It was a monumental film, portraying a gay relationship on-screen during a time where it was considered incredibly controversial. While the film received plenty of backlash, it also received a lot of praise as well. The film created a space that made it easier for a lot of people to open up about their own stories and sexualities. Not to mention, it inspired a lot of other stories, films, and shows. Brokeback Mountain is certainly one of Jake’s most notable, and impactful, roles.

Spider-Man: Far From Home

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Look we have to be honest, seeing Jake Gyllenhaal as Quentin Beck/Mysterio popping out of that green smoke? That first look into this film made us realize that we’d be rooting for him no matter what. Okay, maybe not when he was trying to kill Peter Parker but we can have a little bit of love for a dramatic villain like Quentin Beck. As a treat. It was cool to see Jake Gyllenhaal enter the world of Marvel, a big contrast from his usual indie film roles. He played this character spectacularly well and looked amazing doing it if we do say so ourselves.

Whew, what a list right? Which of these movies is your favorite and are there any you think we missed? Will you be watching Ambulance? Jake Gyllenhaal is gonna be amazing we can feel it. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or hit us up on Twitter!

Image Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

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