The 3 Top-Rated Movies Featuring ‘NCIS’ Star Mark Harmon as a Main Character

Today, Mark Harmon is best known for portraying Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs in the hit primetime procedural NCIS. Going on its 18th season and showing no signs of slowing down, the show remains a fan-favorite CBS crime series, for it focuses on long-gestating character dynamics over the episodic murderous plots. Yet, while Harmon’s show remains at the top of the charts, not all of his films were triumphs. Yet, a few Mark Harmon movies are definitely worth a watch! 

Looking at Harmon’s career through a Rotten Tomatoes lens, the actor’s best cinematic turns become obvious. While Dear America: Letters Home From Vietnam features Harmon in an acclaimed documentary, this list will highlight character roles, as opposed to celebrity appearances. 

Mark Harmon of NCIS
Mark Harmon of ‘NCIS’ | Brian To / Contributor

3. ‘The Presidio’ 

Mark Harmon, Sean Connery, and Meg Ryan appeared together in 1988’s The Presidio, which premiered to mixed critical reviews. The story focused on a detective (Harmon) forced to seek the help of an old rival (Sean Connery) when his partner is murdered. The story gets a bit more complicated when the detective begins to fall for his rival’s daughter (Meg Ryan). 

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Though the film’s premise made for a dramatic-enough story, Harmon and Ryan were criticized for lacking chemistry for a romantic duo, and many noted that the film felt like a hodgepodge of crime story stereotypes. The film currently has a 53% critics consensus on Rotten Tomatoes. 

2. ‘Summer School’ 

If you’re tired of watching Mark Harmon play the serious and somber — always internally conflicted — man, give Summer School a shot. Summer School is a comedy about high-school-teacher Freddy Shoop (Harmon), who learns he has to commit to summer school as his Hawaiin vacation approaches. Shoop isn’t really about his students, and he would rather flirt and chat with the history reacher (Kirstie Alley), yet the history teacher doesn’t appreciate his lack of dedication. The film has a 63% critics score on Rotten Tomatoes.

1. ‘Freaky Friday’

Though Mark Harmon is not the main character in Freaky Friday, he is a main character. He plays the husband and father to the mother and daughter who swap places in the film. Harmon stars alongside Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan in the comedy that forces a mom and her daughter to see eye-to-eye in the most comedic and unpredictable ways! Mark Harmon plays Ryan Coleman, while Linsday Lohan plays Anna Coleman, and Jamie Lee Curtis plays Tess Coleman.

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The film currently boasts an 88% critics consensus on Rotten Tomatoes and remains one of the highest-rated films featuring Mark Harmon in a primary role. He is still the serious one of the bunch, and he often comes in to play the confused dad who doesn’t really know what’s going on, but it’s a fun watch, and if you love Mark Harmon, you get just a large enough dose!