Favorite Movie Villains

Many films are as good as their villain. I wanted to do this without Marvel and DC because I could fill it up with just them… The Joker would be in this list if I would not have limited myself. I also kept out slasher film’s villains like Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, and Freddy Krueger. I didn’t want to do the obvious ones…well except number 1.

10. HAL 9000 – 2000 Space Odyssey – HAL was the onboard computer on the Discovery on the way to Jupiter. HAL is keeping something from the crew and will do what it has to…to execute the plan.

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9. Nurse Ratched – One Who Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Nurse Ratched is much like HAL to me. A machine with no feeling who must have complete control over her ward and people. She can be terrifying and terrorizing.

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8. Dolores Umbridge – Harry Potter – My son grew up in the Harry Potter age so I watched all of them. Dolores was a tyrannical bureaucrat. The other villains in Harry Potter were made up and magical…Miss Umbridge was evil in human form.

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7. Hannibal Lector – Silence of the Lambs – “A census taker once tried to test me. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.” Not much else to say.

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6. Annie Wilkes – I just want to let you know, I’m your number one fan. A psychopath with multiple personality disorders who has violent mood swings. Kathy Bates is terrifying as Paul Sheldon’s number one fan.

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5. Harry Powell – The Night of the Hunter – Robert Mitchum looks menacing in this film without opening his mouth. The black and white only adds to his portrayal. He cons an entire town except for a little boy.

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4. Jack Torrance – The Shinning – “Give Me the bat Wendy”… Great over the top performance by Jack.

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3. Alex – A Clockwork Orange – Alex and his three droogs perform some ultraviolence. This movie changed me. I had never seen violence this real before on a screen.

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2. Max Cady – Cape Fear – Because of the time period they were made each version of the character is menacing but in different ways… DeNiro’s is more outwardly violent and is shown doing more than Mitchem’s version which is more subtle… but that doesn’t make his portrayal any less frightening.

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1. Darth Vader – Star Wars – The ultimate villain…along with his own theme song.

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Honorable Mention

The Wicked Witch of the West – Wizard of Oz – When I was a kid she scared me to death. When I think of a witch…she is the one that comes to mind. Those flying monkeys didn’t help either.

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Author: badfinger20

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

53 thoughts on “Favorite Movie Villains”

  1. Yes! I love this post! Now I’m going to make a confession: I’ve never seen 2000 Space Odyssey. I know…What can I say? I’m left without excuse. I particularly like 2-7. I can’t disagree with your #1 but I’ve only seen the first Star Wars. I didn’t see the evolution of the character. If I had to pick a number one it would be Frank (Henry Fonda) in Once Upon a Time in the West. Anyway, great post idea Max. Cool.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was just wondering if you agreed with a few. No one will have the same ones but thank you.
      My son and I may go see it in Belcourt soon. They are doing a September showing of 2000 Space Odyssey…it’s worth seeing if only visually.

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    1. Yes because there people out there like both of them…I’ve worked with no. 9 before…or rather a close match.

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  2. think I’ve only seen “Misery”, the “Star Wars” set of films, “Silence of the Lambs” and a couple of Harry Potters from your list, but couldn’t disagree with your choices… and about wizard of Oz. When I was a kid of about 5 (as far as I recall) I was in hospital and they for some reason got a local theater group to stage Wizard of Oz for patients in the hospital, then send some of the cast around to visit. I was half scared to death of that witch!

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      1. yep! A year or two back I read “Wicked” , liked that book quite a bit, it made the Wicked Witch quite a sympathetic character (although even in it, she got a bit twisted late in her life)…. I then read ‘Wizard of Oz” (I’d seen it but never read it before) and I liked “wicked” better…but I don’t think it was true to the Oz mindset.

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    1. She was terrifying as the witch but she was also terrifying as the witch who tried to take poor Toto before the hurricane. I remember crying my eyes out the first time I saw that when she showed up to get Toto. It was devastating to me as a little kid.

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      1. That movie changed my life. Yes, in the 60s. About a blind girl and her EVIL mother, and a man that steps in to help her. That mother was MY mother, and I think as a kid it gave me hope.

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      2. This was a fun post…I’m glad people responded to it. Its fun taking a break from the music ones. I’m going to try more movie ones.

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  3. I would include Javier Bardem in No Country for Old Men. And Pacino as Michael Corleone in Godfather II. Also a dark horse; Ernest Borgnine in Emperor of the North – a vastly underrated but powerful movie from 1973.

    Interesting cocept…What about Dracula or Jaws? Or accidental villains like King Kong or Frankenstein?

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    1. Javier Bardem was in the list. The coin toss scene is just chilling…I saw The Night of the Hunter last night and that is why I placed Mitchum in there. I’ve never seen Emperor of the North…must check that out. That time period is right in my wheelhouse.
      You are right…I need to expand it the next time to include the others. I tried to have more real people in this one…with the exception of Vader and Hal.

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  4. This confirms what I already knew; that I don’t go for scary movies, haha. Of these, I only know Nurse Ratchet, Darth Vader and the Wicked Witch from the Wizard of Oz. It will probably always be that way.

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    1. I tried not to go to the obvious ones… my favorite scary movies are those made in England in the early seventies. I admit I have a weakness of them but it’s hard to find good quality scary movies.

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  5. I’m still stuck on IT…Tim or Bill. YUCK. Then, there’s Maximilian/Reinhardt from The Black Hole. And, Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction…OMG. Jack Forrester in Jagged Edge. John Doe in Se7en. A funny one is Alan Rickman’s turn as the Sheriff of Nottingham in Robin Hood.

    And, that leads me into more quotes:
    “Locksley! I’m going to cut your heart out with a spoon!”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glenn Close was in a draft and John Doe. I tried to leave monsters out like IT. For me the most frightening out of all of them are the two bureaucrats… Nurse Ratched and Umbridge. Because there are plenty of them out in the world.
      Alan Rickman was great.

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  6. Another wonderful post, my friend! I agree with you on SO many of these! I also watched Harry Potter with my kids – Miss Umbridge was indeed evil!! Night of the Hunter still creeps me out – Mitchum’s best performance in my opinion! Kathy Bates in Misery – WOW. I can still hear that sledgehammer!!! Anthony Hopkins was perfect for his role in Silence of the Lambs. Vader scared the hell out of my as a kid!!! I’d have to really think on this to make my own list. I will tell you, I would certainly include Cody Jarrett (James Cagney) in White Heat. He is such a great villain in that film!

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    1. I would like to see your list man. I limited myself in this one…there are sooo many good ones. Someone mentioned Dracula etc…and they are right…there are so many to add.

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      1. I just watched The Night of the Hunter last night again. I just saw it for the first time this year after another blogger reccomended it.

        All the slasher villains but also IT from Stephen King and it’s so many

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  7. I’ve seen all of these except 8, 5, and 2. Immortan Joe in Fury Road was a terrifying villain. Calvin Candie in Django Unchained, Hans Landa in Inglourious Basterds. Ramsay Bolton from Game of Thrones (not to mention King Joffrey) are two of the most depraved villains there ever were!

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      1. I might later on…but please come out with one I’d love to see it. There are a lot of places to go like Dracula, Frankenstein, The Joker, Godzilla…it’s so many in every category.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Great post, Max. For Terry, he can’t go past Commodus, as played by Joaquin Phoenix, in the film Gladiator. Jenny’s most evil villain is Sergeant Tony Meserve, as played by Sean Penn, in Casualties of War.

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