Alison Brie is, hands down, one of my favorite actresses who has blown up in the last decade. Not only is she extremely talented in both dramatic and comedic roles, her voice-acting skills are excellent as well. From her time on Community to the Netflix series, GLOW, Brie has shown that she’s here to stay in Hollywood.
But, what are some of her best performances? Which one is the ultimate best? These are the Alison Brie movies and TV shows with her best work, and how you can watch them right now.
10. The Five-Year Engagement (Suzie Barnes-Eilhauer)
The Five-Year Engagement, starring Jason Segal and Emily Blunt, tells the story of a couple whose relationship becomes strained over time, as their engagement steadily gets extended over and over again.
I’m always a fan of a good romantic comedy, and Alison Brie definitely rocks it as Suzie Eilhauer in The Five-Year Engagement. The only reason I ranked it at number ten is that it just doesn’t stand out at much as the other characters on this list, but it’s still a great performance and a funny movie that anyone would enjoy. Emily Blunt and Jason Segal have great chemistry, as do Alison Brie and Chris Pratt in their supporting roles.
9. Happiest Season (Sloane Caldwell)
Happiest Season, starring Kristen Stewart and Mackenzie Davis, is all about a woman who struggles to come out to her conservative parents at Christmastime, when she decides to travel home with her girlfriend.
Alison Brie plays Sloane, Harper’s (Mackenzie Davis) eldest sister, and she and Davis have some awesome scenes together that really make her stand out among the rest. The rest of the Happiest Season cast also work together so well, and it's filled with stars like Dan Levy, Aubrey Plaza, Jake McDorman, and more. Christmas films are always some of my favorites to watch, and this one is certainly a modern tale that makes me smile. It’s a heartwarming story with plenty of comedy, drama, and Christmas joy in-between.
8. The Lego Movie (Princess Unikitty)
In The Lego Movie, we follow Emmet, an ordinary Lego minifigure who ends up joining a resistance movement to stop a tyrannical businessman from taking over Lego world and gluing everything into his vision of perfection.
Alison Brie voices Princess Unikitty, and let me just say - she’s amazing. Brie gives Princess Unikitty the perfect kind of chaos and cuteness that a character like her needs, and that can only be brought to life by her wonderful voice-acting talents. I do think another one of her voice roles is slightly better than this one, but The Lego Movie definitely gave her some great material to work with, alongside its wacky, yet sweet, story.
7. Sleeping With Other People (Elaine “Lainey” Dalton)
In this 2015 film, Sleeping with Other People is all about two college students who both lose their virginity to each other one night and never see each other again until years later, now having their own personal problems as they deal with relationships and life.
In one of her first major starring roles in a film, Alison Brie rocks Sleeping with Other People as Lainey, and her chemistry with Jason Sudeikis flows so perfectly, it makes me wonder why they haven’t been in any other movies together. Their relationship is so easy to believe, from beginning to end, mixed in with some awkwardly fun moments that bring a certain charm to the way they work. It’s a smaller film than many of the others on here, but deserves so much more praise. Seriously, check it out if you haven’t seen it yet.
6. GLOW (Ruth Wilder)
In this Netflix original series, GLOW follows the fictionalization of the real people and story of the 1980s during syndicated women’s professional wrestling circuit, called Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling (otherwise known as GLOW).
GLOW is one of those series that deserved so much more recognition and was cancelled way too soon. Alison Brie starred in this Netflix hit, and showed us how remarkable she is as a leading lady. Not only is her character, Ruth, full of spunk and has an interesting story, but everyone else around her shines just as much. It’s a shame that GLOW was canceled on Netflix due to COVID-19 related issues, but at least we still have the three seasons to watch whenever we want on Netflix. Maybe one day they’ll return to it.
5. BoJack Horseman (Diane Nguyen)
Taking a look at another Netflix original, BoJack Horseman is all about the titular character, BoJack Horseman, someone who was once extremely popular back in his heyday, and now barely a blip in the memory of others. He plans to make a comeback by writing his tell-all autobiography, with the help of a ghost writer.
Alison Brie voices Diane Nguyen, the ghost writer that works for BoJack, and let me say - I love her in this series. While Alison Brie was able to bring that maniac energy to Princess Unikitty in The Lego Movie, Diane stands out to me so much more as her best voice-acting role. Diane’s story in BoJack Horseman is gut-punching and raw and will make anyone tear up for a bit, and her relationship with BoJack is one of the best on the show, by far. She’s a complex character, through and through, and Brie’s voicing of her makes Diane even better.
4. The Post (Lally Weymouth)
In this film based on a true story, The Post tells the tale of journalists who worked at the Washington Post, and their endless trials to try and publish the infamous Pentagon Papers, a set of documents that regarded the 20-year involvement of the United States government in the Vietnam War, and even earlier in French Indochina.
While Alison Brie is always brilliant in her comedic roles, there’s something about The Post that really makes it one of her best performances. While her role isn’t as big as some of the other cast members in here - with Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks as the main stars - she is one of the standouts, and portrays Lally Graham, a former journalist at the Washington Post, wonderfully alongside her co-stars.
3. Mad Men (Trudy Campbell)
Mad Man was a popular AMC series that starred Jon Hamm as Don Draper, an executive at an advertising agency on Madison Avenue in New York City, hence the term “mad men,” in the 1960s. It follows his highs and lows, and the trials and tribulations of working in the advertising industry back then, and the people who surrounded him.
Arguably, this is one of the performances that made Alison Brie famous. While she was just a recurring character in the Mad Men cast, her part as the wife of Pete Campbell stands out, creating excellent tension between the two of them and a story that no one can tear their eyes away from. She truly shines in this dramatic role.
2. Promising Young Woman (Madison McPhee)
In this popular thriller, Promising Young Woman stars Carey Mulligan, who plays a young woman who is haunted by a traumatic past, and takes it upon herself to get vengeance on the men who have committed horrible atrocities.
Alison Brie stars as Madison, one of the many women and men that Mulligan’s character comes across. I’ve already expressed how I like watching Brie in dramatic roles, but I feel like she brings it hard in Promising Young Women. Her role as Madison is perfectly played, especially in her scenes with Cassie, played by Mulligan. Also, the story is top-tier in Promising Young Women. If you like thrillers, you are going to be on the edge of your seat the whole time. It’s such a fun movie to watch, filled with awesome stars, and Alison Brie only adds to that stardom.
1. Community (Annie Edison)
This Dan Harmon-created comedy, Community, follows Jeff Winger, a former lawyer who faked his degree, and now must go back to community college to try and become an actual lawyer. While he’s there, he meets an interesting friend group, all comprised of extremely different individuals.
You knew it was coming. We all knew Community would be number one. While Mad Men shined a light on Alison Brie’s acting talents dramatically, Community is what shot her to stardom with how awesome she was with comedy. Her portrayal of Annie Edison, the studious classmate, is one to remember. The whole Community cast is full of stars, but Alison Brie as Annie works perfectly. Her comedic timing, heartwarming stories, and genuine friendships and relationships that she has with each of the characters created a wonderfully sweet character, which is why it’s Alison Brie’s best performance to date - let’s hope we all get to see her again in a possible Community movie.
I’m sure that in the next couple of years, we’ll be seeing plenty more of Alison Brie in both film and TV, but for now, I can at least go back and watch some of her best performances, from beginning to end. Maybe even now you’ll have found a new show or movie to watch. If you don’t mind me, I’m going to re-watch Community for the umpteenth time.
Big nerd and lover of Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire. Will forever hate season eight. Superhero and horror geek. And please don't debate me on The Last of Us 2, it was amazing!
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