As 2011 comes to a close, Movie Fanatic is looking back on the best of the best on screen. Last week, we took a look at the Top 10 Comedies of 2011 and today’s focus is on movie villains. It was a banner year for the villain on film in 2011, with superhero movies providing naturally gifted villains, but there were also a few surprises to be found, including a few comedies!
So, without further ado, we present the Movie Fanatic Top 10 movie villains of 2011.
10. Ghostface from Scream 4
Maybe not the best of the Scream movies, but in Scream 4 Ghostface reminded audiences why that character is so darn villainous. We feel that half the reason Scream 4 even got green lit was that producers and director Wes Craven knew that audiences wanted another go-around with the Ghostface killer. He is scary incarnate.
9. Chango from 30 Minutes or Less
Perhaps an unusual choice, but Michael Pena’s portrayal of Chango was both funny and fierce. Danny McBride and Nick Swardson’s characters were supposed to be the villains in 30 Minutes or Less. But it is Pena’s Chango that stole the villainy from McBride and Swardson. It was also terrific to see Pena flex his comedic muscles and give audiences a true badass.
8. Hector Hammond from Green Lantern
Perhaps Hector Hammond is the best part of a bad movie? Largely due to the astounding acting talent of Peter Sarsgaard, the villain in Green Lantern gave the film its only juice worthy of the big screen. One rule of being a movie villain that he nails perfectly is, would we want to run into him or her in a dark alley? In the hands of Sarsgaard… no, Hammond is not someone we would like to meet in a dark alley.
7. Dave Harken in Horrible Bosses
Kevin Spacey was easily the most horrible of the Horrible Bosses, and therefore deserves to be on our list of top 10 movie villains of 2011. The fear he puts into Jason Bateman in the film is palpable and he is truly the main impetus for the plot to off Bateman and his friends’ bosses.
6. Tex Richman from The Muppets
Jason Segel and co-writer Nick Stoller showed their creative brilliance by not only bringing The Muppets back in all their glory, but also by introducing a foe to their fuzziness in Tex Richman. The oilman wants to own the Muppets' theater for its oil deep beneath the surface. In the astounding acting hands of Chris Cooper, not only does he strike fear in the audience, but even the entire cast of Muppets, who normally don’t seem to possess much in terms of fear.
5. August in Water for Elephants
Christoph Waltz is becoming a go-to actor for portraying villains. We can thank his Oscar-winning turn in Inglourious Basterds. Waltz was the baddie in two films this year, first Green Hornet, but most deliciously devilish in Water for Elephants. His August owns and runs a Depression-era circus with an iron fist. Anyone who disagrees with his methods is promptly thrown off a train -- seriously. Then, there is August’s treatment of animals. That alone puts August in his own league of hell when it comes to movie villains of 2011.
4. Loki in Thor
Loki was so bad in Thor, that he was the perfect choice to serve as the central villain of 2012’s The Avengers. In the movie Thor, his little brother of Chris Hemsworth’s hero is part whiny younger sibling and all evil as he threatens the well being of the entire universe. Tom Hiddleston’s portrayal never drifted into camp, as it easily could have, and the result was a perfect foe for Thor. Movie Fanatic cannot wait to see the entire The Avengers gang take on Loki in the 2012 film. We think that speaks volumes to his badness… it takes an all-star of Marvel heroes to bring him down.
3. Red Skull in Captain America: The First Avenger
Speaking of Marvel bad guys, Red Skull slithered and took the fear factor into the stratosphere in Captain America: The First Avenger. Hugo Weaving, the iconic bad guy from The Matrix movies, donned the Red Skull mask and struck fear into audiences in 2011. You know you’re doing something right as a movie villain if the Nazis are afraid of you. And they were, rightfully so.
2. Moriarty in Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows
Imagine our thrill when we heard that the villain in the sequel to 2009’s Sherlock Holmes was going to be Moriarty. In the Sherlock Holmes books, that character is often referred to as Sherlock’s best bad guy. Looking at his pedigree, it is easy to see why. He is Holmes’ intelligence equal. As good as Sherlock is at dissecting a mystery and solving it, Moriarty excels at developing devilish plans that leave inspectors, such as Holmes, completely adrift in trying to figure out the source of the evil. In A Game of Shadows, as played by Jared Harris, Moriarty has no soul and no qualms about plunging the world into war, all so he can make a fortune. He won’t get it, but Harris deserves Oscar consideration for his deft portrayal.
1. Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Expecting anyone else to top our list of top 10 movie villains of 2011? We could argue that Voldemort is the best movie villain of the last decade. And kudos to producers for casting Ralph Fiennes as He Who Shall Not Be Named -- after books and films that teased the man’s penchant for evil. When he finally takes somewhat of a human form in Fiennes, it is a villain that easily produces nightmares, long after the credits roll. But during Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, his villainy practically destroys all that is good in the world of magic, engulfing Hogwarts in a fiery finish and “killing” Harry Potter. Voldemort is so wicked, we could see him topping the list of best movie villains of all time.