10 Best Villains From The Worst Movies

Split image Blackbeard, Darth Maul, Ultron

Hollywood is full of movies that range in quality, with plenty of films being well-liked across the board while others immediately flop with everyone. However, plenty of films will have a single redeeming feature in a good villain. Villains are important to sell a good story and set up a compelling threat for the heroes. Often these villains owe their popularity to great acting, effects, or better treatment in subsequent installments.

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These villains are often stronger than the heroes, and have a lot more going for them than even the film itself. Unfortunately, they also tend to be killed off, some never to return to screens again. However, that doesn’t detract from the fact that they were a great feature of the movie. Whether a monster or a conniving supervillain, these antagonists all deserve recognition.

10 Klytus Is Even Better Than Ming

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Famed science fiction movie Flash Gordon is one of the many movies that are so bad it’s excellent. The ’70s B-movie follows NFL player Flash Gordon as he’s forcibly transported from Earth to the planet Mongo. There, he encounters the world’s ruthless leader, Ming the Merciless.

Flash Gordon’s mortal enemy may be Ming, but the reality is Klytus is a far more intelligent and sadistic villain. The black-cloaked enforcer of Ming also did the warlord’s thinking for him, and would have been a much more unstoppable foe had he been allowed to reach potential.

9 The False Deity From Star Trek V Made For An Interesting Idea

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Fake god from Star Trek V

Star Trek has always had some great villains and a very mixed reception for the films. Nowhere was this more clear than in Star Trek V: The Final Frontier. The film followed the crew of the original Enterprise as they set out across the cosmos in search of God.

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The Final Frontier’s villain posed as God but was later proven to be a fraud, a villainous terror trapped on a distant world. He proved a great villain thanks to the effects, acting, and powers. However, the film was incredibly dull, had little action, and was disappointing overall.

8 The Monster Doesn’t Get Enough Screen Time In Cloverfield

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Cloverfield helped kick off the slew of found footage horror and science fiction movies in the 2000s. However, it just wasn’t great, and depended entirely on the hope of seeing the monster to keep viewers interested. The shaky cam makes much of the film incomprehensible.

Cloverfield was a mess that depended on quick camera shots and smoke and mirrors to create the illusion that a lot was going on. Audiences barely saw the monster fully in action until the film’s final minutes, making the ending the only part worth a rewatch.

7 Clown Was One Of The More Faithful Aspects Of Spawn

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Spawn came along at a time when Hollywood viewed comic book movies as low-budget, low-effort entertainment. When it adapted Todd McFarlane’s comic book series to film, the outcome was a complete mess. However, the main hero and villain were both well cast.

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Despite the over-the-top performance, John Leguizamo did a good job in the role of Clown, even if the character himself can be excessively crude. In a mess of bad CGI and poorly executed action sequences, Clown made the otherwise bad film memorable.

6 Kevin Spacey Is The Best Live Action Lex Luthor

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Lex Luthor Superman Returns

Superman Returns picked up where the Christopher Reeve continuity left off, with Brandon Routh stepping into the role of the Man of Steel. The film itself was dull and forgettable, but is notable for Kevin Spacey’s Lex Luthor, which remains one of the best portrayals of the villain.

Superman Returns is one of Superman’s weakest films, yet the great match of character and actor for both leads is tough to deny. Though the actor is now disgraced, his on-screen presence that he brought to characters like Frank Underwood made him an excellent Lex Luthor.

5 Blackbeard Perfectly Fits Pirates Of The Caribbean

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Ian McShane as Blackbeard in Pirates of the Caribbean

Pirates of the Caribbean is a franchise that has slipped in quality with each new sequel. In the fourth entry, On Stranger Tides, Jack is inducted into Edward ‘Blackbeard’ Teach’s pirate crew aboard the Queen Anne’s Revenge. The captain was every bit as evil as expected.

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Played by Ian McShane, Blackbeard commands the crew to capture mermaids to find the Fountain of Youth for eternal life. The movie disappointed fans, but Blackbeard – combined with the return of Barbossa – made it worth the watch.

4 Darth Maul Is The Only Part Of The Phantom Menace Worth The Watch

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Darth Maul in the Star Wars prequels

Released in 1999, The Phantom Menace is still regarded as the single worst Star Wars movie of all time. It lingered too much on the politics of the universe, lousy comedy with Jar Jar, and little in the way of action. However, it is praised for the introduction of Darth Maul.

Darth Maul was the film’s key antagonist, and he pursued the Jedi and Queen Amidala when they escaped from Naboo. Maul then participated in one of the best-choreographed fights in Star Wars and was a truly menacing villain. He proved so popular he was resurrected for The Clone Wars.

3 The Hybrid Was A Great Step Up For Alien Versus Predator

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>A predator faces off with a hybrid in Alien vs. Predator: Requiem

Despite a great first film, the follow-up to Alien Versus Predator was an abysmal mess. The second film picked up from the hybrid tease at the end of the first, with the chest burst of the dead Yautja. The creature that came forth was a combination of xenomorph and Yautja and posed a real threat.

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The hybrid alien wasn’t something that had yet been seen in either franchise and, despite the film’s incoherence, was a good villain. It could match the predators in strength, have the corrosive blood of an alien, and almost wipe out all the film’s characters.

2 Ultron Felt Like A Legitimate Threat To The Avengers

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>Ultron reveals his new form in Avengers: Age of Ultron

Avengers: Age of Ultron is one of the MCU’s weakest entries. However, its villainous robot, Ultron, is one of the franchise’s better villains. While the movie overused the MCU’s signature comedy style, Ultron managed to shine through as a serious villain.

Voiced by James Spader, Ultron was an artificial intelligence program housed within a machine designed by Tony Stark. Programmed to make the world safer, Ultron was every viewer’s worst nightmare concerning AI. He decided that the best way to protect the planet was to wipe out humanity.

1 Dustin Hoffman Is Hook’s Redeeming Feature

<!–[if IE 9]> <![endif]–>An image from Hook.

As strong as the nostalgia many fans may have for Hook, the fact is it was never that great. Despite a touching family story, too much of the movie is bogged down in middle-aged Pan failing to remember his old life. However, the film is salvaged by Dustin Hoffman’s portrayal of Captain Hook.

Where the midlife crisis theme doesn’t work that well with Pan, seeing Hook battle boredom and mortality is a treat in every scene. Dustin Hoffman’s acting almost entirely carries the movie, and is all that makes it memorable. Captain Hook is a man jaded by age and boredom and sees Pan’s return as a final hurrah.

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