The history of film is littered with great characters; performances that have stuck in the popular imagination for decades. Han Solo, Rhett Butler, even Ace Ventura: these are figures from films – classic and cult classics – made years ago but we still remember them today. This is a list of my personal favourites; they may not all be Oscar winners, but they’ve proved unforgettable.
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Viggo Mortensen is just brilliant – not to mention easy on the eyes – as Tolkein’s dark, brooding ousted prince. This really is a case of perfect casting; no other actor could’ve done it better.
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Reeling, slurring and just a little bit camp: Jack Sparrow has got to be everyone’s favourite pirate. The smoky eye-liner, the sharp tongue and that Keith Richards bandanna all come together in a way that manages to be funny and, admit it ladies, pretty damn hot as well! Although, maybe that part’s just down to Johnny Depp …
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Okay, so if you watch it now, Back to the Future might be a little lame: all the ‘space age gadgets’ look like old-school microwaves and Michael J. Fox’s hair is pretty damn awful. This movie was made before I was born, but for some reason I grew up watching it over and over. There’s nothing to beat it for sheer, over-the-top eighties fun, and it’s made Marty and the Doctor legendary characters to a whole generation.
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This whip-wielding action archaeologist is one of the twentieth century’s most memorable popular characters. The movies spawned several remakes, including a TV series starring Sean Patrick Flannery, but for me (and I suspect for most of you as well!) Harrison Ford will always be the real ‘Indie.’
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Simon Pegg’s portrayal of a thriving, if neurotic, London policeman might not be quite as famous as the likes of Indiana Jones, but the character is fiercely funny and so well executed. Hot Fuzz remains one of my all-time favourite movies; ironic, irreverent and more than a little silly, and its success is due in no small part to the brilliance of its central character.
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I love this character, both in print and on the screen. She’s funny, apt and sensitively defined and Renée Zellweger’s portrayal is perfect, right down to the flawless English accent.
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Undoubtedly Will Ferell’s funniest, most ridiculous film to date, Anchorman has become something of a cult classic. Snippets of the dialogue have passed into every day speech so that phrases like ‘I love lamp,’ and ‘News team, assemble!’ have got be contenders for the most quoted movie lines of the century so far.
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The title character of the bizarre phenomenon Napoleon Dynamite is a gawky, geeky and downright strange creation of comic genius. His pet llama, Tina, is a personal highlight!
So there we have it ladies, an odd assortment of figures from film. What are your favourites? I’d love to compare notes!
Top image source: mariapaola.edublogs.org
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