10 Amy Irving Movies and TV Shows: Best to Worst Filmography

Without doubt, any list of Amy Irving movies and TV shows will bear testament to the huge talent which the actress is. She has appeared in more than twenty films and in each one she keeps delivering performances that are noteworthy. It has been said that the true test of an actor or an actress’ skill is in their ability to put on a live performance in a stage production and the same can be said to be applicable Amy Irving who has appeared in theater productions as well.

The actress was born Amy Davis Irving on the 10th of September, 1953 in Palo Alto, California. Her career began in 1955 when she was just 2, the role she played was that of a princess and it was in a play her father, Jules Irving was directing. The earlier period of her career was spent acting in stage productions where she honed her skills. By the time Amy was twenty-one she had her first major role and it was in the supernatural horror film, Carrie where she played Sue Snell.

The year she had her debut in television shows was in the 1975 show, The Rookies where she appeared in one episode but this was just the stepping stone in her career which has lasted as long as six decades and is littered with many performances in both film and television. In all of her time as an actress, Amy Irving has won only two awards for the work she has done, the awards were an Obie award and a Screen Actors Guild award. She won the former in 1988 for her performance in The Road to Mecca while the latter was for Traffic. Irving has also been nominated for an Oscar and two Golden Globes. Irving’s career includes more of supporting roles rather than major roles, however, here is a look at some of Amy Irving movies and TV shows ranked from the best to the worst.

10 Amy Irving Movies and TV Shows: Best To Worst Filmography

1. Crossing Delancey

Amy Irving Movies and TV Shows
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In this Amy Irving movie, we see the actress take on the role of Isabelle Grossman. The film is based on a play by Susan Sandler, who also happened to be in charge of the film’s screenplay writing. Irving’s character is a young woman who lives in New York and works for a book store where authors come to give readings. She meets Anton Maes, an author who is played by Jeroen Krabbe, and she is attracted to him and the type of life he leads as a part of the New York intelligentsia. On the other hand, her grandmother decides to introduce her to another man, Sam, Peter Reigert played this character. In the wake of the events, Grossman gets stuck in a sort of love triangle which gets solved in the end. For her performance, Irving was nominated for a Golden Globe of Best actress in 1989 but she lost the award to Melanie Griffith for Working Girl.

2. Carrie

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This film is based on the 1974 Stephen King novel, it happens to be King’s debut novel while it is Irving’s debut performance in the film. Carrie tells the story of Carrie White, a young girl whose spirit and character has been repressed by her mother’s extreme religious practices. At her high school, the same is the case as she is also bullied by some girls in her class. When she gets her first period her body starts to change not just physically, she also develops telekinetic powers. One of the girls who used to bully her, Sue Snell played by Irving, decides to let her boyfriend ask Carrie to the prom where things get out of hand. The film was made on a budget of $1.8 million but it was able to make $33.8 million.

3. The Good Wife

Amy Irving Movies and TV Shows
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The Good Wife is one of the TV shows that Amy Irving has appeared in but she was in this show for just one episode. This show is highly rated for its writing, acting and directing. In this legal and political show, Irving is part of a legal battle involving the destruction of a picture at a museum. The entire show got good rating and because of certain technical aspects, it is considered as one of the few recent television shows made by a network that actually follows the pattern of 22 episodes per season.

4. Traffic

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The entire cast of this film won a Screen Actors Guild award for outstanding cast. Traffic is one of Amy Irving movies that the actress appeared in when her career in Hollywood was nearing its 6th decade. This three-hour-long film was initially rejected by multiple studios because of its length and the complexity of the story which is split in three parts, each of the parts consists of the point of view of different characters. Amy Irving is part of the Wakefield story and she is the wife of an Ohio judge who was appointed to take on the war against drugs, while their daughter struggles with drug addiction. The complexity and interwoven narrative style of the film’s writer is one of the many reasons it had critical success. Traffic is based on a UK television show and it made more than five times its budget of $46 million.

5. Thirteen Conversations About One Thing

Amy Irving Movies and TV Shows
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With a rating of 83% on Rotten Tomatoes, this Amy Irving film is split based on the lives of five people who are all in search of the same thing but go about it differently. The story is split into thirteen segments with each segment representing the thirteen conversations. Irving was cast alongside Alan Arkin, Matthew McConaughey, Clea DuVall, and John Turturro. The five major characters are all seeking happiness and in their quest, their lives intersect with each person making decisions that affect their quest.

6. Yentl

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The story in this Amy Irving movie follows the pattern of one of Shakespeare play. Yentl, the titular character; played by Barbra Streisand who also directed, co-wrote and co-produced, decides to take on her late brother’s identity so that she can be enrolled in a Jewish school for boys. While at the school, she meets Avigdor and Hadass. Avigdor (played by Mandy Patinkin) and Hadass (Irving’s character) are engaged. The relationship between Yentl, Hadass, and Avigdor take an interesting turn. Every conflict that arose in the film is resolved by Yentl choosing to move to New York where she can truly be herself.

Reactions to the film were mostly mixed and this is clear with Irving receiving two award nominations, one from the Academy Awards and the other from the Razzie awards. Despite these mixed reviews, it was a success at the box office.

Also Read: 10 Greatest Aidan Turner Movies and TV Shows Ranked From Best To Worst

7. Zero Hour

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This is this one of her lesser flattering performances. The show features the adventures of the husband and wife duo, Hank Gallistone and Jacinda Barrett. Both of them are on a hunt for a very ancient relic. Irving plays the character Melanie Lynch and she is featured in only seven episodes. The show had to be canceled after its first season of thirteen episodes because the viewership ratings were very low.

8. The Rage: Carrie 2

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In 1999 there was an attempt to make a sequel of the 1976 Carrie, this sequel features Carrie’s step-sister Rachel who also has telekinetic powers but hers only manifested after her best friend killed herself from humiliation because she has sex with a boy who just used their encounter to score points. Just like her sister, Rachel comes to an unfortunate end. Amy Irving is the only person in the first film who reprised the role in the first film, in this film she is the guidance counselor of the school that Rachel attends.

For critics who mostly had negative reactions to the film, the major failing of the film was its inability to re-enact the creepiness of the first film. Critics were not the only group of people disappointed by the film; moviegoers were not so enthusiastic about it either as the film made a loss at box office sales.

9. Spin City

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This television show aired for six seasons and had over a hundred episodes. Spin City looks at the inner workings of New York’s governing body while focusing on the local government level. It features an ensemble cast, the show was however canceled in 2002 because of a decline in the viewership. Amy Irving appeared in one episode of the show, her character Lindsay Shaw is a New York socialite whose help is enlisted to raise funds for the state after a bankruptcy claim is made by the mayor.

10. One Tough Cop

Amy Irving Movies and TV Shows
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On this list of best to worst Amy Irving movies and TV shows, One Tough Cop holds the lowest rating. This crime film was written by Bruno Barreto while it was directed by the Bregman father and son duo. The film follows the investigation of a nun’s rape and murder, and Amy Irving plays the role of Jean Devlin an FBI agent who is involved in the investigation.


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