Which movie made you realize that you were hopelessly, irrevocably in love with Jennifer Garner? For many, the answer is 13 Going On 30, in which Garner’s overnight-adult Jenna Rink made audiences of all ages want to look at their lives with fresh eyes. She’ll break your heart in Dallas Buyers Club and leave you fiercely protective in Juno with that earnest, endearing Miss Honey demeanor that makes you trust her in an instant. Of course, that’s when Ms. Garner feels like playing nice: we can’t forget she got her start with the likes of Alias and Daredevil, and she’s just as comfortable taking out her enemies as she is reeling them in. Jennifer Garner is America’s sweetheart, America’s field agent, and everyone’s dream girl — and I have the movies to prove it.
If I sound smitten, I am: Jennifer Garner’s movie history is a treasure trove of nostalgia and enthusiastic fun, and there’s never been a better time to celebrate the many performances for which she’s loved best. (Yes, I’m including Catch Me If You Can, because her chemistry with Leo is real and it’s important.) When she became a mom to kids Violet, Seraphina, and Samuel with ex-husband Ben Affleck, she was vocal about making the conscious choice to step back from acting — and as those kids become teens(!), Garner’s acting gigs are once again picking up speed. In other words, catch up now, because we’re sure this list will only get longer.
Read on for the Jen Garner movies that will remind you exactly why she’s America’s crush (like you’d ever forget).
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