10 Best Rebecca Ferguson Movies, Ranked

Estimated read time 10 min read

An actress with an uncanny ability to elevate every film and series she appears in, Rebecca Ferguson has quietly become one of the most bankable and brilliant stars of the modern age of cinematic entertainment. With her appearances in the Dune films and the more recent Mission: Impossible movies, it is easy to celebrate her exceptional work in major mainstream sensations, where she brings a commanding and encouraging feminine presence to male-dominated genres.



That being said, Ferguson has also appeared in everything from underrated gems of fantasy and horror to rousing musical biopics that became seismic hits. Across her impressive and illustrious body of work, these films stand out as Rebecca Ferguson’s best thus far.

10 ‘Florence Foster Jenkins’ (2016)

Director: Stephen Frears

Kathleen sits with an upset, disappointed, and angry expression on her face. Image via 20th Century Studios

A biopic that explores the most unconventional of music careers, Florence Foster Jenkins is a poignant dramedy centered on the hopeless aspirations of a socialite in 1940s New York. Despite having limited musical talent, Florence Foster Jenkins (Meryl Streep) yearns to become a great opera singer. While those close to her entertain her dream, her husband, St. Clair (Hugh Grant), strives to ensure Florence never learns what people actually think of her singing.

Boasting some laugh-out-loud moments at its protagonist’s expense, Florence Foster Jenkins ultimately wins viewers over as a sweet story with a bizarre real-life basis that serves as a heartfelt reflection on the complexities of love and ambition. Although this is very much a showcase for la Streep, the film served as a pivotal step in Ferguson’s ascent to stardom. Like many of her characters, Kathleen is sharp and can easily come across as unlikable. However, Ferguson keeps her compelling if not necessarily sympathetic, serving as a valuable supporting player in this bizarre tale.


Florence Foster Jenkins

Release Date May 6, 2016

Runtime 110

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9 ‘Life’ (2017)

Director: Daniel Espinosa

Dr. Miranda North looks around with a torch while in her space suit. Image via Sony Pictures Releasing

A sci-fi horror movie set aboard the International Space Station, Life is one of the few feature films thus far to have benefited from giving Ferguson a true starring role. It tracks the crew of the ISS as they come into contact with an alien life form from Mars. Their initial excitement turns to horror as the multi-celled organism becomes hostile and begins viciously attacking the crew, exhibiting ferocious intelligence as it evolves.

With a lean 103-minute runtime, Life is an effective thriller that uses a contained setting to elicit a powerful sense of agony and suspense among its viewers. Ferguson held a true co-starring role alongside Jake Gyllenhaal, appearing as the space station’s CDC quarantine officer Dr. Miranda North. Ferguson capably leads the plot, often on her own, maintaining all the tension and using the claustrophobic setting to her favor.

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8 ‘The Kid Who Would Be King’ (2019)

Director: Joe Cornish

Morgana le Fey holds her hand outstretched as she wields her power. Image via 20th Century Studios

A refreshing and vibrant family fantasy adventure derived from the legend of King Arthur, The Kid Who Would Be King was a critical success upon release on account of its universal accessibility and wondrous charm. It focuses on a young social outcast who discovers Excalibur and gathers his friends to unite with the wizard Merlin (Sir Patrick Stewart) to defend humanity from a cruel enchantress.

Sincere, uplifting, and strikingly earnest in its pursuit of innocent, optimistic fun, The Kid Who Would Be King remains an underrated gem of modern family entertainment. The young cast commands the screen with an impressive presence and impact, but they are well-supported by their more seasoned co-stars. Appearing as Morgana le Fey, the villainous witch who wants to unleash her power on the world and enslave humanity, Ferguson’s performance is perfect for the film’s kid-friendly tone and its thrilling dark fantasy allure.


The Kid Who Would Be King

Release Date January 16, 2019

Runtime 120

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7 ‘The Greatest Showman’ (2017)

Director: Michael Gracey

Jerry Lind performs a song while wearing a white dress. Image via 20th Century Studios

A musical biopic that blends a sensationalized story with an immersive sense of wonder and adventure, The Greatest Showman excels as a crowd-pleasing hit and a vibrant, feel-good story. Focusing on the career of P. T. Barnum (Hugh Jackman), it documents the promoter and entertainer as he goes from a struggling showman to the owner of the greatest circus in the world off the back of his innovative ideas.

A spanner in the works, Ferguson co-stars as Jenny Lind, the “Swedish Nightingale,” a famed singer who Barnum manages on her first tour of America, jeopardizing his work with the circus and his family life. While critics’ reviews were mixed on account of the film’s historical revisionism, The Greatest Showman did earn universal praise for its enchanting musical numbers and its incredible cast. Ferguson is stellar in a role that walks a fine line between playfulness and outright antagonism. She keeps things interesting and leaves a lasting impression despite her somewhat limited screen time.


The Greatest Showman

Release Date December 20, 2017

Runtime 105

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6 ‘Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One’ (2023)

Director: Christopher McQuarrie

Ilsa wearing an eye patch and aiming a sniper rifle in Mission: Impossible- Dead Reckoning Part One Image via Paramount Pictures

Since making her debut in the franchise’s fifth entry, Rebecca Ferguson’s Ilsa Faust has become one of the Mission: Impossible films’ most adored characters. As such, many fans were left a little disappointed with her death in Mission: Impossible – Dead Reckoning Part One. However, her few moments are still memorable, and the action epic still thrives as a pulsating blockbuster movie.

The seventh Mission: Impossible movie follows Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) and the IMF as they go against orders to track down an advanced A.I. system that, if it were to fall into the wrong hands, could pose a threat to humanity. While its “part one” narrative obligations may have prevented it from being the most rewarding Mission film, storytelling-wise, it still featured plenty of high-octane thrills and some of the most jaw-dropping stunts in the franchise. Despite her drastically reduced screen time, Ferguson’s Ilsa remains a highlight of this story, a fascinating and endlessly engaging figure that is Ethan’s equal—and, in some respects, his better.

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5 ‘Doctor Sleep’ (2019)

Director: Mike Flanagan

Rose the Hat looking at the camera in Doctor Sleep (2019) Image via Warner Bros. Pictures

A bold yet underrated legacy sequel to Stanley Kubrick’s horror masterpiece The Shining that also serves as a faithful adaptation of Stephen King’s novel, Doctor Sleep is a mighty achievement from modern horror maestro Mike Flanagan. It follows the now-adult Danny Torrance (Ewen McGregor), whose “shining” leads him to settle down in a small town. However, when he forms a connection with a young girl who shares his power, he must help her face a horrifying force.

Whereas The Shining utilized claustrophobia and isolation, Doctor Sleep embraces the vast expanses of America, presenting a compelling, large-scale story rich with plenty of poignant moments and chilling sequences. Rebecca Ferguson’s villainous turn as Rose the Hat, the immensely powerful and persuasive leader of the True Knot, is as spellbinding as it was spine-tingling. Alluring yet undeniably disturbing, Rose the Hat is a remarkable acting achievement on Ferguson’s part, a magnetic villain who commands the screen and steals the film away from the protagonists.


Doctor Sleep

Release Date October 30, 2019

Runtime 153

Rent on Apple

4 ‘Dune’ (2021)

Director: Denis Villeneuve

Paul and Jessica in the desert looking to the distance in Dune Image via Warner Bros.

An ambitious masterwork that captures the fascination and awe of tens of millions of moviegoers, 2021’s Dune was just the beginning of an instant classic sci-fi spectacle. Based on Frank Herbert’s novel, the science-fiction epic follows Paul Atreides (Timothée Chalamet) as his family is tasked with extracting an invaluable mineral called spice from the harsh planet of Arrakis. When House Atreides is betrayed, however, Paul’s journey leads him to the Fremen, the native people of the barren desert planet.

A film of stunning enormity that excels off the back of its visual grandeur, Dune became a huge critical and commercial success even with its extended runtime and meticulous pacing. Although the film is Chalamet’s star vehicle, Ferguson delivers a scene-stealing performance as his Bene Gesserit mother, Lady Jessica. It’s an insightful, precise performance that greatly benefits from Ferguson’s authoritative and commanding persona. Lady Jessica is fascinating, and Ferguson plays her as if she always has an ace under her sleeve.



Release Date October 22, 2021

Runtime 155 Minutes

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3 ‘Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation’ (2015)

Director: Christopher McQuarrie

Ilsa Faust aiming a gun at someone from behind a partition in Mission Impossible Rogue Nation Image via Paramount Pictures

The first of the Mission: Impossible films to feature Rebecca Ferguson’s Ilsa Faust, Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation is a typically brilliant entry to the franchise that has become a defining pillar of modern-day action cinema. With the IMF disbanded, Ethan Hunt gathers his team to go rogue as he strives to prove the existence of a terrorist outfit known as the Syndicate. His group joins forces with Faust, a disavowed MI6 operative, to achieve their goal.

With Tom Cruise at his usual, exhilarating best, the film excels as a frenetic and heart-stopping popcorn flick of terrific blockbuster fun. Ferguson’s Faust is a brilliant addition, with her somewhat shady yet likable ally to the IMF giving the film a refreshing dynamic that makes it distinct. Seamlessly incorporating a strong feminine presence into the action thrills while kicking as much ass as any other major figure in the spy genre, Ferguson’s Ilsa Faust is possibly the most complex character in the saga.

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2 ‘Dune: Part Two’ (2024)

Director: Denis Villeneuve

Rebecca Ferguson with script on her face as Lady Jessica in Dune: Part Two Image via Warner Bros. Pictures

Surpassing its predecessor in terms of magnitude, stakes, and narrative punch, Dune: Part Two is an instant hit as both a standalone spectacle and as one of the greatest sequels ever made. With Paul Atreides out for revenge on those who conspired to decimate his family, he unites with the Fremen—who view him as a prophesied savior—and forms a romance with Chani (Zendaya).

Like its predecessor, Dune: Part Two thrives as a striking spectacle, one that operates at a rapid pace to deliver Paul’s engrossing and thought-provoking character arc in the most visually arresting way possible. While it bolsters its already astounding ensemble cast with several significant additions, Dune: Part Two still finds plenty of time for its returning stars to shine. However, it’s Ferguson who might be the film’s MVP. Ferguson is sublime and unnerving as Lady Jessica, who uses the Fremen’s faith to further her desire for vengeance. Adopting a more ruthless and manipulative approach, Ferguson imbues Lady Jessica with a sinister aura without ever descending into outright villainy. Again, the actress walks a fine line between dark and light, effectively guiding the plot from the background.

1 ‘Mission: Impossible – Fallout’ (2018)

Director: Christopher McQuarrie

Ilsa Faust standing in a park in Mission: Imposible - Fallout Image via Paramount Pictures

One of the greatest and purest action spectacles in cinematic history, Mission: Impossible – Fallout stands as an awe-inspiring highlight of the film franchise and an exceptional use of Rebecca Ferguson in a more central role. It follows Ethan Hunt and the IMF as they reluctantly team with CIA operative August Walker (Henry Cavill) to prevent a terrorist group from setting off three plutonium cores in different regions of the world.

Running at breakneck speed with the thrills coming thick and fast, Mission: Impossible – Fallout is two-and-a-half hours of high-octane, adrenaline-pumping delirium that cascades from one astounding action set piece to the next. It presents many of the best sequences in the franchise while also nailing the dynamic between its main characters. Ferguson returns as the elusive Ilsa Faust, and the film allows her to create a more layered portrayal of the character. Ferguson goes all in on the action and emotional impact, making Ilsa far more relatable and grounded while keeping her mystifying and near-ethereal. Fallout is an endlessly rewatchable and scintillating action adventure that stands as Ferguson’s best film thus far, showcasing her best abilities while delivering a dose of pure, unadulterated entertainment.

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NEXT: The 10 Best Characters in ‘Dune: Part Two,’ Ranked