10 Best Movie Characters 2010

Monday, December 20 by Tom Gordon

The 10 best movie characters 2010 come from a wide range of films, but you'll see that more than a few of them are notorious thieves and anti-heroes. Maybe it was the mood of 2010 that has bad guys, often with a soft heart, capturing our attention on screen. See if our list of the 10 best movie characters of 2010 lines up with your favorites of the good guys and bad guys of an exceptional year at the movies.

  1. "Dom Cobb." Leo DiCaprio starred as an unusual type of thief in probably the coolest movie of the year, "Inception." The film demanded your attention, or at least multiple viewings, to make sense of it all. But DiCaprio continued to prove he's a remarkable actor, particularly in the way he interacted with co-stars Ellen Page, Marion Cotillard and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
  2. "Doug MacRay." Ben Affleck's bank robber with a conscience was the centerpiece of a surprisingly good heist movie called "The Town," also directed by Affleck. It will be interesting to see if this becomes one of early examples of Affleck as actor/director in a long line of his own films.
  3. "Machete Cortez." Played by Danny Trejo Machete is a former federale who's hired to assassinate a senator, but becomes a target himself. What follows is one of the most violent, stylish and entertaining revenge kick-ass tales ever told on the screen. "Machete," written and directed by Robert Rodriguez, allows the title character to engage some of the craziest fight scenes ever seen in the movies.
  4. "Gru." Steve Carrell voices the criminal mastermind who experiences a change of heart in the animated masterpiece, "Despicable Me." Though the little yellow Minions got most of the attention, it was Gru and his hilarious accent and wild schemes that were at the heart of the movie.
  5. "Robin Hood." One of the ten best movie characters of 2010 is also one of the all-time great characters ever. This time, Russell Crowe embodies the prince of thieves in a Ridley Scott film that traces Robin's possible origins along with Little John, Friar Tuck and the rest of the usual suspects.
  6. "Ree Dolly." Newcomer Jennifer Lawrence is outstanding as the Ozark Mountain girl who struggles to keep her family together as she journeys to find her drug-dealing father. Ree is brave, vulnerable and unforgettable. If you missed this movie in the theater, seek it out somewhere. It's that good.
  7. "King George." It's not often you get to put a monarch on a list like this, but the reluctant heir to the throne at the dawn of World War II proved his mettle in real life and on the screen as brought to life brilliantly by Colin Firth. The shy and stuttering king undergoes an amazing transformation, just when his country needs him the most.
  8. "Mark Zuckerberg." The Facebook founder and centerpiece of "The Social Network," Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) becomes a misunderstood hero in a decidedly 21st century tale. Just how much of the film is true or close to it remains up for debate. But Eisenberg is brilliant as an even more brilliant entrepreneur and slightly flawed visionary.
  9. "Aron Ralston." The main character in the brutally realistic true tale of a hiker who cuts off his own arm to free himself from being trapped in a ravine is one of the most memorable movie characters of 2010. James Franco is perfect as Aron, who captures his ordeal on video and risks everything to keep going and survive an unthinkable predicament.
  10. "Harry Potter." Daniel Radcliffe starts to wrap up a decade of playing the famous boy wizard in "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1." Harry faces his biggest challenge, and Radcliffe deserves credit for growing considerably as an actor in the same part through seven films.