3. Apollo 13
Ron Howard’s epic historical drama, Apollo 13, got a new generation of movie fans excited about space travel. Unfortunately, it was a few decades too late. But the film, nevertheless, still serves as one of the more effective and stirring blockbusters of the 1990s, and that’s thanks in large part to the stellar performances from its ensemble.
Bill Paxton played Fred Haise, Apollo 13’s pilot, who falls ill during the crew’s aborted mission. Paxton fit seamlessly into the role. In every scene, you feel the weight that’s on Haise’s shoulders — the mounting frustration at the crew’s life-and-death situation, and his fierce dedication to his team. More importantly, you never doubt for a second that he’s a world-class astronaut, and that’s a true accomplishment for any actor.