Monsterblog Wednesday: Our Favorite Movie Villains
Movies. Just the word alone stirs up so many classic images it’s hard to pin point your favorite one. They started as silent, black and white films, and have transformed into colossus, colorful cinematic experiences. We all have our favorites, and we all have our duds (I’m talking about you, Superman Returns). The one thing most of us have in common is our general love for the big screen. Iconic characters. Brilliant directors. Mesmerizing scores. All crucial parts of a movie making process. If there is one aspect of a movie that separates the truly great from the unforgettable, though, it’s the ability to create a true villain. A villain is the anti-hero, but similar to the hero, everything he/she does is usually driven by certain motivations. The difference, of course, is that the villain has a darker, evil motive, while the heroes goal is viewed as pure, and decent. This contrast makes the villain a more interesting character. While we may not be credible enough to rank the greatest villains in movie history, we sure as hell can tell you our favorite ones. Behold..the Movie Villain Monsterblog:
This isn’t my most hated, nor the most terrifying villain but he is definitely a personal favorite. It is also no coincidence that the part, and entire movie, was written by one of my favorite directors of all time, Quentin Tarantino. Landa is cruel, ruthless and relentless, however, he is shockingly upbeat and polite. Yes, Landa is a Nazi, but he doesn’t buy into the Nazi ideology, and has no personal hatred for the Jews. One may think that makes him less of a villain, conversely it shows his true evil. He hunts and kills Jews simply because he is good at it and he is ordered to do so. A master assassin, he sees nothing wrong with what he is doing because he sees it as simply furthering his career. He, in fact, betrays the Nazi regime by allowing the massacre of Hitler and his inner circle. This makes him a hero right? Wrong. He does this for personal gain, he sees Hitler’s reign coming to an end, he knows the Allies will win; so he strikes a deal with the American government to give him a full military pension, a house on Nantucket Island, fame and a medal of honor. All the while escaping punishment for the lives he, and the Third Reich destroyed along the way. And it works! His despicable plan works, and he gets away with it. Well almost, Lt. Aldo Raine does give him a retirement present in the form of a swastika scar on his forehead: but seriously, a small price to pay considering.
By the way this role made the movie, and the character wouldn’t have been what it was without Christoph Waltz. Leo DiCaprio was Quentin’s first choice, and as much as I enjoyed him as Calvin Candie in Django Unchained, Waltz knocked it out of the park.
Honorable mentions:Amon Goeth – Schindler’s List, Hannibal Lector – Silence of the Lambs, Joker – The Dark Knight, Scar – The Lion King
Rainbow Randolph from Death To Smoochy
In the 2002 classic, Robin Williams plays the erratic and twisted, Rainbow Randolph. Coming from the deepest corners of your nightmares, Rainbow Randolph embodies everything that is evil in society. On the air of his children’s show Randolph is pure gold. Capturing the love and affection of children and parents alike . But, behind the scenes, the beloved children’s show host is bribing the parents to get their kids on said show. Once Smoochy (Ed Norton) takes over his show he finally snaps. Baking penis cookies. Choking Midgets. Hiding the remote. Some real sick shit. Deceiving children, embezzling money from charities, and trying to kill Edward Norton gets this loon to the top of my villain list.
Shooter McGavin from Happy Gilmore
“This is golf, not a rock concert!” “I saw two big, fat naked bikers having sex on 17! How am I supposed to CHIP with that going on!?” His quotes are timeless, and the ego centric character even has his own twitter account. @Shooter McGavin is the cockiest, slimiest villain in comedy movie history. He sinks putts and eats pieces of shit like me and you for breakfast. He is the antagonist to Happy Gilmore, the ex hockey thug who tries his hand at golf to help his bankrupt grandma. Everyone Shooter interacts with in the movie loathes him, especially Happy and (woof) Virginia Venit. All the great movie villains are usually talented at one particular thing. Some villains use computers and weapons for world domination, but not Shooter. He plays golf. And damn is he good. Every decision he makes in Happy Gilmore has the same motivational factor: to win the Holy Grail of golf, the green jacket (or yellow). What separate Shooter from other comedy villains is the lengths he goes to physically and mentally destroy the hero, Adam Sandler’s Happy Gilmore. Not only does he want to beat him on the course, but he outbids Happy and buys his grandma’s house. This scene contains one of my all-time favorite quotes. Shooter, brimming with evil pride, tells Gilmore he’s going to turn his childhood bedroom into his trophy room, and if Happy lays another finger on him, he’s going to “burn down the house and piss on the ashes.” Later in the movie, he hires a goon to run over Happy in a Volkswagen while Happy is walking the 18th fairway. Like all great golfers, Happy survives the attempted murder, and wins the yellow jacket, turning Shooter into a shell of a man. While I was to see Happy get the big check and the girl, a small part of me was rooting for Shooter to reign supreme, and earn his rightful spot in golf history. As sure as Grizzly Adams had a beard, Shooter McGavin will go down as one of the comedy villains of all-time.
Honorable Mentions: The Butcher – Gangs of New York. John Doe – Se7en. Harlen Maguire – Roads of Perdition.
The Terminator – The Terminator
For me, there’s only one villain of the past, present, or future that is flat out unstoppable. He is not a man or a myth, but a machine. I’m talking about the Terminator. Played by the greatest bodybuilder/actor/governor/deviant/actor that ever lived, Arnold Schwarzenegger. From his metal crib to his leather jacket and shotgun, the terminator was literally made to be a bad guy. The first time I saw the original Terminator I was taken away by Arnold’s acting chops, especially for his 3 lines in the movie. But as a villain the terminator simply cannot be stopped. His purpose is to kill, and to be killed is not an option. I mean technically he is killed, but in the future anything is possible. He will rise again to help skynet destroy the human race muhahahhahahaaha! Wait what?