10 Greatest Movie Villains Of All Time

Thursday, February 3 by Mason Kaho

The list of the 10 greatest movie villains of all time includes some of cinema’s most terrifying and demonic characters. A good story is driven by conflict, and a great “bad guy” can sometimes steal the show in the battle between good and evil. Sometimes we remember the villain better than we do the protagonist.

  1. Hannibal Lecter. Lecter, one of the greatest movie villains of all time, was perfectly played by Anthony Hopkins in “Silence of the Lambs.” He is a deranged killer and also a genius, and the FBI uses him to help capture a serial killer on the loose. After Lecter bargains for his services, all hell breaks loose.
  2. Darth Vader. Vader may be the king of all cinematic bad asses, and certainly one of the greatest movie villains of all time. He is part of the “Star Wars” series, and after we see his evil ways in the first three movies, we learn how he comes to be in the three prequels that follow. He made “the force” a household term. Don’t be near him when he starts using it.
  3. Norman Bates. Bates is the titular character in the Alfred Hitchcock classic “Psycho.” The proprietor of a small motel, Bates has guests check in, but whether or not they leave is another issue… His challenging mother, squirreled away in their home above the motel, doesn’t help matters.
  4. Alex Delarge. Alex, the star of “A Clockwork Orange,” is certainly one of the greatest movie villains of all time, participating as he does in a little of the old ultra-violence, as he calls it. Rapes, murders, robberies, beatings and the like are part of his resume.  Until he gets “cured,” that is.
  5. Annie Wilkes. Wilkes is a creation of Stephen King, and plays her part in the film "Misery" very well, terrifyingly becoming one of the greatest movie villains of all time. She is a huge fan of autho Paul Sheldon, who she just happens to come across after he wrecks his car in snowy New England. She promises to help him mend… but then things go a bit awry.
  6. The Shark. The great white from "Jaws," is definitely one of the greatest movie villains of all time. This movie terrified people and kept them away from beaches, giving sharks a bad reputation that exists to this day. Lurking beneath the waters and basicall unstoppable, this beast was a great movie monster.
  7. Freddy Krueger. Freddy came about with the “Nightmare on Elm Street” franchise and was a unique twist on horror villains—he existed in the character’s dreams, making him impossible to avoid. Freddy made famous a gloved hand with extended knives coming off his fingers.
  8. The Joker. When “Batman” hit theaters in 1989 it ushered in the current trend of big-budget comic book movies. Jack Nicholson played a campy, over-the-top Joker who stole every scene he was in, and provided some comic relief, ruthless though he was.
  9. HAL 9000. Stanley Kubrick’s classic “2001: A Space Odyssey” was a futuristic space film in which astronauts find that the on-board computer, HAL (a take-off on IBM) has taken on a life and mind of its own, and is calling the shots. His intentions are not good.
  10. The Wicked Witch of the West. Everyone has seen the classic “The Wizard of Oz,” and we have all at one point in our lives done our best impression of, “I’ll get you my pretty…and your little dog, too.” The Witch terrified us as kids, a great foil to the sweet an innocent Dorothy. In the end, a little bath was all she needed…