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A Complete Guide To Mark Ruffalo's Sensitive Guy Characters

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    Mark Ruffalo is an Oscar-nominated actor, and his range is well-known. But there's a certain kind of role that just begs for a "Mark Ruffalo type." You know the one: the sensitive, overly emotional, middle-aged-but-still-scruffy, "aw, shucks" kind of dude who you would never consider dating until he brushes his hair aside in a certain sexy way. Yes, 13 Going On 30, we're thinking of you.

    It's not that Ruffalo ever really plays the same character twice in his movies. All of his sensitive guy characters have entirely different sets of nuances, whether they're wavering on romantic commitment, feeling too many feelings about gay rights, or worried about a precocious daughter. It also doesn't hurt that he enjoys reading his favorite poem from time to time.

    This summer, Ruffalo's Bruce Banner / Hulk is still smashing through theaters in Avengers: Age of Ultron. However, we're about to see him play a bipolar father raising two daughters in 1970s Boston in Infinitely Polar Bear, opening June 19. In celebration of these quintessentially Ruffalo parts, we've ranked 15 of his most sensitive guy characters (in order of sensitivity, not movie quality, mind you). Warning: Use this as a guide to movie viewing, not as a measure by which to compare the men in your life.




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    Begin Again (2014)

    Sensitive guy: Dan is a record exec who was just fired from his job, and failing in the role of parent and husband. But somehow, he's sensitive enough to see the beauty in young musician Gretta's (Keira Knightley) work, and records an album with her all over New York City. Sure, he's kind of motivated by the idea that the project will get him his job back, but he's also all about the art, man.

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    Reservation Road (2011)

    Sensitive guy: Dwight is a divorced father who's late to return his son to his ex-wife. He winds up hitting and killing a young boy on the road, then covers it up — so his character doesn't exactly start off as a good guy. But over the course of the movie, as he ironically becomes the lawyer of the dead boy's father (Joaquin Phoenix), guilt works away at him and that sensitive dad comes through.

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    Blindness (2012)

    Sensitive guy: He plays a Doctor who falls victim to a strange blindness epidemic, where victims are then quarantined in a prison. He's forced to redefine himself without sight, and realizes that he can be just as strong as his still-seeing wife (Julianne Moore).

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    The Kids Are All Right (2010)

    Sensitive guy: Carefree restaurant owner Paul readily admits that he donated sperm because he thought it would be more fun than giving blood. Then he goes and has an affair with one of his biological kids' mothers (Julianne Moore). And yet, his caddish behavior comes off as less than sleazy, and we can believe he's coming to love the family he was never supposed to be part of in the first place.

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    You Can Count On Me (2000)

    Sensitive guy: Terry has been drifting from job to job and place to place, out of touch from the sister (Laura Linney) who practically raised him after their parents died in a car accident. Flat broke, he comes to stay with her and meddles with how she's raising her son on her own. But, with every stupid thing he does, like taking her son to a pool hall on a school night or confronting the boy's father, you can tell he's acting out of love.