Hollywood has birthed some of the most artful, dramatic, and acclaimed works of cinema in the world. And, as anyone knows, it’s a good conflict that makes a good movie, and it’s the classic good vs evil, hero vs villain characters that bring the audience to the edges of their seats.
Usually, it’s the heroes who become the faces of their movies. Today, however, we celebrate their opposition; the evil, the villains.
1. Heath Ledger as The Joker
The Dark Knight’s The Joker is on this list hands-down no matter what, and it’s his eccentricity, odd behavior habits, and just flat-out mesmerizing performance that puts him here. No other villain has succeeded in being as diabolical and as twisted as The Joker was while maintaining such a captivating and strangely amusing persona.
2. Tobin Bell as John Kramer aka JIGSAW
As I considered how to write this paragraph, I wondered if Jigsaw even counts as a villain. He’s more like a diabolical, scheming, morally-twisted murderer. Villains have a little bit more class and, usually, some financial or militia backing. Jigsaw is just nuts, and he’s nuts on his own. He kills people because he thinks that his surviving victims will be stronger because of their trials under him, making him a sort of deranged philanthropist, deranged being the key word.
3. James Earl Jones as Darth Vader
Darth Vader is one of the few villains we see on the big screen who still sports a cape, but damn does he sport it well. His mask only adds to his darkness, and that choke-hold from across the room move? I’d be #1 on the FBI’s Most Wanted if I could do that.
4. Ralph Fiennes as Lord Voldemort
Maybe it’s the fact that he has no nose. Maybe it’s that his gums are blue. Maybe it’s his snakey, whispery, hissing voice. Maybe it’s the bald head. Maybe it’s that serpent pet of his. Whatever it is, though — and I can’t put a pen on exactly what it is — but whatever it is, there’s something undeniably creepy about Voldemort.
5. Rodrigo Santoro as Xerxes
Sure, he’s an out and out tyrant. A delusional self-proclaimed God and coward at the same time. But as far as the power of intimidation goes, there’s nothing that lacks in this character. Xerxes was blind in his lust for power, never thinking twice in not only killing the opponent but even his own men in his greed to acquire more and more for himself. Even towards the end of the movie, he manages to get away with just a flesh wound and a bruised ego.
6. Mike Myers as Dr. Evil (Well, not really.)
If not because he’s got evil in his name, plus a doctorate to back it up, then his schemes and methods still count heavily towards him. And his ability to fail. Among all the Hollywood villains — most of which whom, by the very nature of the cinema, fail — Dr. Evil perhaps most often and in the most embarrassing of ways fails. While that isn’t necessarily something to put on your villain’s resume, it does set him apart from the competition. Oh, and he’s funny. AND he has a midget of himself. WIN.
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About Dylan Taylor
He’ll have you know that he has big feet and sexy hair. When not posting pictures of his oversized shoes on Twitter, Dylan is either writing, socializing or sleeping. He lives on the East Coast and loves design, technology and new media. The man has quite the female fan following, maybe even a tad too much if you ask us. On wwwireframe, he covers new media and pop culture.