Jump to content

Great Movie Villains


Recommended Posts

4. Darth Vader Star Wars

Sure, he's cartoony, and yes, the execrable prequels almost ruined him (Darth Vader as a whiny Jedi-child prodigy...god help us).

But I saw Star Wars when I was ten, and for the first time, I recognized the joys of movie bad guys, as something more than merely someone to root against. I was baffled that my friends liked Luke or Han Solo the best...when Vader was so much more cool. I was slightly disappointed at his unbelievably abrupt "turn" to the good side at the end of the third movie. I preferred him choking rebels, ferociously berating everybody, and whacking his own men whenever they messed up.

Punishment: redemption and a peaceful death.

3. Tommy DeVito GoodFellas

I considered Joe Pesci's Nicky Santoro from Casino, but he's almost the same character, so I stuck to the classic. Tommy's viciousness is wondrous to behold. A conversation gone sour has become a classic:

"But I'm funny how? I mean, funny like I'm a clown? I amuse you? I make you laugh, I'm here to fuckin' amuse you? What do you mean, funny? Funny how? How'm I funny??..."

Well, it doesn't translate that well to the page. But everyone who's seen it likely understands the perfection of this scene, much of which was unscripted.

Punishment: shot in the head. Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.

2. Anton Chigurh No Country For Old Men

Almost a force of nature, Anton is so frigging bad-ass that the film's hitman, played by Woody Harrelson, seems positively benign in comparison. Javier Bardem's Chigurh is absolutely ruthless, a kind of rogue gangster who lives, at least to some degree, by a peculiar code based on fate. When a coin-toss favours a would-be victim, Anton mildy congratulates him and leaves. A fifty percent chance of being murdered is, after all, fair, in Anton's world. When he kills Lewellyn Moss's wife, he is a bit baffled by her objections. When she refuses to call the coin toss, he tells her she has to. It's the only fair way, after all. He's also bound by the fact that he promised Moss he would kill his wife. So he does. A promise is a promise.

Punishment: Not much. A car accident and an exposed bone. But he can take it.

1. Michael Corleone The Godfather

Pacino's trajectory from mild-mannered "good kid" and war hero into a coldly pragmatic murderer is said by some to intentionally echo America's changing self-assessment after the 60's. I don't know about this, but I think that Michael is the ultimate movie villain, in that he hardly seems a bad guy...until the dramatic, house-cleaning murder-spree that closes the film. Ruthless in a supremely sensible way, he signifies the dark truth beneath the veneer of family and conservative values espoused through film portrayals of gangsters, laying the groundwork for even harsher critiques like GoodFellas.

Punishment: Ultimately, everything. But in this first film: a betrayal of what he thought he was.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 57
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Good villains!

With hats off to Dennis Hopper, Frank Booth in Blue Velvet.

A total over the top unstable psycho who gives off a sense of familiarity. Creepy.

Then there is Anthony Perkins playing Norman Bates in the 1960 version of Psycho. Based on Ed Gein? Brrrr....

The Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lector in Silence of the Lambs. Buffalo Bill was simply nuts, but Hannibal was psycho with an incredible intelligence and wit. And good taste apparently.

And finally, how about Gaear Grimsrud in Fargo? You could also give honours to Grimsrud's partner Carl Showalter, but he ends up being more pathetic in the end, especially the final disposition of his earthly remains by Gaear - being shot out of a wood chipper on to the lake ice.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good villains!

With hats off to Dennis Hopper, Frank Booth in Blue Velvet.

A total over the top unstable psycho who gives off a sense of familiarity. Creepy.

Then there is Anthony Perkins playing Norman Bates in the 1960 version of Psycho. Based on Ed Gein? Brrrr....

The Anthony Hopkins as Hannibal Lector in Silence of the Lambs. Buffalo Bill was simply nuts, but Hannibal was psycho with an incredible intelligence and wit. And good taste apparently.

And finally, how about Gaear Grimsrud in Fargo? You could also give honours to Grimsrud's partner Carl Showalter, but he ends up being more pathetic in the end, especially the final disposition of his earthly remains by Gaear - being shot out of a wood chipper on to the lake ice.

These are all good. I had indeed thought of Psycho...come to think of it, Perkins definitely belongs.

But I can't believe I forgot about Dennis Hopper's Frank--that guy was terrifying.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Brick-top from the movie Snatch ranks high on my list of favorite villains.

Do you know what "nemesis" means? A righteous infliction of retribution manifested by an appropriate agent. Personified in this case by a horrible cunt... me.
Edited by eyeball
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What. No mention of Alex from A Clockwork Orange yet? The ultimate personification of malevolence and calculated evil, he makes Vader look like a pussy cat in comparison.

One Alex was given a hug though he was a pussycat. Recall Frank Cross in Scrooged.

Frank Cross: I get it. You're here to show me my past, and I'm supposed to get all dully-eyed and mushy. Well, forget it, pal, you got the wrong guy!

Ghost of Christmas Past: That's exactly what Attila the Hun said. But when he saw his mother... Niagara Falls!

A real villain has the venal ethos to spit in the face of sentimental regrets right up to the bitter end, like Longshanks in Braveheart.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm surprised that this thread is nearly 10 posts old and nobody has mentioned The Joker yet.

-k

Yeah....the list could have gone on and on...and in truth, there are a lot of great villains pointed out here.

To be fair, at least a top ten list would have been more reasonable (if conventional). That was my original plan, but god love me, I'm a lazy man.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Tell a friend

    Love Repolitics.com - Political Discussion Forums? Tell a friend!
  • Member Statistics

    • Total Members
      10,764
    • Most Online
      1,403

    Newest Member
    RevolutionPartyofCanada
    Joined
  • Recent Achievements

  • Recently Browsing

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...