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10 movies where you want the bad guy to win

by Stewart Cole

Everyone loves a bad guy and nowhere is this more true than the average movie. Extraordinary villains have adorned our screens from the early days of cinema to our modern obsession with antiheroes. Just take a look at the success of Venom movies or the legacy of shows like Breaking Bad to prove it.

However, it takes a special kind of evil to really win our hearts. A bad guy who is so exciting that we ask them to win. A synergy of good writing, good narration and (above all) an excellent interpretation are required to be really “on the side” with a cinematic competitor.

We are not just talking about defective heroes. Given their moral, ethical and legal shortcomings, we will take a look at some of the most lovable bad guys on the big screen and why they made us want to win. consciously or unconsciously.

The Joker has a long and historic cinematic history, with heavyweight actors such as Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger taking on iconic turns as the crime clown prince. In 2019 the great Joaquin Phoenix stepped on the plate to give us a Scorsese-flavored taste for the iconic evil, in Todd Phillips’s Joker.

After making a name for himself in comedies for almost twenty years, Phillips examines the troubled hired clown, Arthur Fleck, and what social conditions lead to a tragic figure like the Joker. Arthur’s inevitable, violent collapse occurs after he was unjustly abused by his fellow comedians, abused by the system that was meant to fix him, and generally treated as a second-class citizen.

The Joker Scene is a subtle masked simulation of New York in the 1970s, a time of extreme crime, social deprivation and violent upheaval. The film makes us wonder how we would behave in Fleck’s place, living in such a pressure cooker every day.

While not entirely sympathetic – it ultimately brutally kills some people – Phoenix’s interpretation elevates Fleck’s character to someone recognizably human, worthy of your empathy. The cleansing that Fleck feels as he makes his final transformation into the Joker becomes a cleansing for the audience that accompanies him on this brutal journey.

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