Matt Smith is enjoying a resurgence in popularity thanks to his starring role in House of the Dragon, which has seen record viewership since its premiere. The Game of Thrones prequel is far from Smith’s first venture into the mainstream eye, as he remains best known for playing the Eleventh Doctor in Doctor Who, among other performances.
It’s interesting how Smith’s career trajectory has fared in terms of critical reception, with his Rotten Tomatoes scores reflecting Smith’s body of work. This includes sci-fi shows like Doctor Who to dark biopics like Charlie Says, and it’s worth looking at the Rotten Tomatoes ratings to figure out which of Smith’s credits reviewers liked the most.
10 Mapplethorpe (2018) – 40%
Mapplethorpe is a biopic about the titular photographer, detailing his career from start to finish until his death at a young age. Matt Smith appeared in the title role, playing the titular character through his ups and downs as he became a photographer notorious for his bold imagery.
Mapplethorpe did not receive the best reviews, as critics felt the tone was uneven and the film unclear whether Mapplethorpe was meant to be a tragic figure or not. Still, Matt Smith’s performance was praised for doing his best to make the film an enjoyable viewing experience.
9 Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2016) – 46%
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is a horror-comedy that turns the story of the classic novel into one where zombies threaten the main cast. Matt Smith emerged as a suitor for protagonist Elizabeth, whose appearance causes him many problems.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies received quite a mixed response for its goofy premise and lackluster action sequences. However, the film’s humor was seen as an advantage, with Smith also taking part in it with his role meant to portray how awkward dialogue from the period can be through a modern lens.
8 Charlie Says (2018) – 59%
Matt Smith played the daring role of Charles Manson in Charlie Says, which is a biographical drama about the effect Manson had on his cult. The film depicts Manson’s influence as he gradually turns his admirers into killers, with the impact of his actions clearly visible.
Charlie Says has been praised for taking a dramatic approach to the material surrounding Charles Manson. But critics were also unimpressed with the lack of diversity in the storyline since most of the film is about Manson preaching to his followers. Smith was noted for his commitment to the role and for transforming for the film.
7 The Forgiven (2021) – 67%
The Forgiven is about a Western couple in Morocco who accidentally engage in a hit-and-run with a youngster. Their subsequent attempts to sweep the incident under the platform led to the breakdown of their marriage, while having to deal with the fallout of their actions.
Matt Smith emerged as the couple’s corrupt friend who further tempts them into their darkest vices. The Forgiven was praised for the cast’s compelling performances, but criticized for not drawing on the theme of Western privilege the characters used to avoid justice and focusing too much on their debauchery.
6 Last Night in Soho (2021) – 76%
Last Night in Soho is a dream-based horror movie worth giving nightmares to those who find it hard to put up with this genre. It follows a young woman who somehow travels to the 60s and befriends another woman before realizing she might be having unexplained visions.
Matt Smith appeared as Anya Taylor-Joy’s character’s unsympathetic boyfriend who is responsible for trapping his girlfriend in a terrible scheme. Last Night in Soho was well received for its gorgeous visuals and intriguing premise, with negative reception towards the sudden change in tone in the finale that doesn’t match the rest of the film.
5 Official Secrets (2019) – 82%
Keira Knightley directs Official Secrets, which is based on the true story of Katherine Gun as she exposed the illegal NSA operation that sanctioned the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Matt Smith appears as a reporter Martin Bright, who helps Gun expose the operation.
Official Secrets was praised for shedding light on the truth behind the disastrous invasion, with particular praise for Knightley’s performance. Smith was also known for providing good supporting lead actress with Ralph Fiennes, as Official Secrets was generally considered a gripping drama.
4 The House of the Dragon (2022-) – 85%
Games of Thrones is known as a notable world-building TV show, with the series now being expanded thanks to the prequel House of the Dragon. Smith leads the cast as Prince Daemon Targaryen, with the story examining the power struggle surrounding the Targaryen bloodline.
House of the Dragon immediately won unanimous acclaim for its production values, intricate storylines, and powerful performances. Smith made waves for his charismatic, counter-type performance as Daemon, credited with standing out among the cast on a show that regained the fanbase the controversial Game of Thrones finale lost.
3 The Crown (2016-) – 90%
Matt Smith gained his next mainstream notoriety after Doctor Who with The Crown, as the actor appeared as the young Prince Philip. Smith has been praised for making all of The Crown’s sad moments feel authentic, with his pairing with Claire Foy’s Queen Elizabeth II praised for his chemistry.
The Crown spans different decades in Elizabeth II’s monarchy, meaning Smith was only there for the first two seasons before stepping down from the role. But the actor remains one of the reasons The Crown has taken off in popularity, as critics continue to give him positive nods.
2 Doctor Who (1963-) – 90%
Matt Smith’s version of the titular hero is considered one of the best Doctors in Doctor Who history, as his incarnation brought great youthful energy. The Eleventh Doctor’s time in the time travel series has seen him face the possibility of his impending death, in addition to his association with Amy Pond, River Song, and Clara Oswald.
Doctor Who has remained well received over the six decades it has been available to viewers, with each Doctor considered unique in their own way. Smith has been praised for making the Eleventh Doctor very likable, quirky, and brooding when the time required it. Doctor Who also served as a springboard to Matt Smith’s success.
1 Her House (2020) – 100%
His house slipped under the radar upon release despite universal praise for breaking the horror formula. The film tells the story of a Sudanese couple who seek asylum and live in a dilapidated house which they discover shows them the sinful acts they have committed in the past.
Matt Smith has a supporting role as the couple’s social worker, whose role is to illustrate how outsiders will find the protagonists’ horrors hard to believe. Her home has earned critical acclaim for the film’s delicate portrayal of the family’s trauma and paranoia. Many viewers were able to sympathize with them as a result, especially since it’s a disturbing portrayal of PTSD in horror form.