Entertainment

The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film 

Ranker Characters
Updated April 24, 2020 2.8k votes 491 voters 27k views 42 items

As the saying goes, age is just a number. That's definitely the case for these fictional old men from the movies. The best old man characters in films display wit, guts, and heart that may seem at odds with their advanced phase of life. Some of these characters are optimistic about the future while others are downright grumpy. Many of these old man movie characters are played by the greatest actors of all time – performers who have only gotten better with age themselves.

Which role should top this list of the best old man characters in film? Clint Eastwood has brought many iconic figures to life, thanks to his distinctive growling voice and imposing presence. But perhaps his best old man movie character was Walt Kowalski in Gran Torino. Woody Grant, played by Bruce Dern in the 2013 film Nebraska, is another one of the best fictional old man characters.

Jack Nicholson appears on this list several times. He's played captivating old men like Warren Schmidt in About Schmidt and Melvin Udall in As Good As It Gets. Other memorable roles that appear on this top old man characters in film list include Joe Cabot from Reservoir Dogs and Bob Harris from Lost in Translation.

Which old man character is your favorite? Vote your picks up the list and add any great roles that are missing.
list ordered by
1
Carl Fredricksen is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Ed Asner in Dug's Special Mission
2
Obi-Wan Kenobi is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
3
Professor Albus Dumbledo... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
4
Gandalf is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
5
Emmett Brown is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Christopher Lloyd in Back to the Future Part III
6
Yoda is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added
7
Mr. Kesuke Miyagi is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Pat Morita in The Karate Kid
8
Alfred Pennyworth is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
9
Professor X is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
10
Lucius Fox is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Morgan Freeman in Batman Begins
11
Ebenezer Scrooge is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
12
Walt Kowalski is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Clint Eastwood in Gran Torino
13
Waldorf is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added Jim Henson in The Muppet Movie
14
Palpatine is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added
15
Han Solo is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added Harrison Ford in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back
16
Mickey Goldmill is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Burgess Meredith in Rocky II
17
Statler is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added Richard Hunt in The Muppet Movie
18
Doc Hudson is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added Paul Newman in Cars
19
John Gustafson is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Jack Lemmon in Grumpy Old Men
20
Count Dooku is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added Christopher Lee in Star Wars: The Clone Wars
21
Melvin Udall is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Jack Nicholson in As Good as It Gets
22
King Harold is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added John Cleese in Shrek 2
23
Henry Jones, Sr. is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
starwarssuperfan added Sean Connery in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
24
Miracle Max is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
Billy Crystal in The Princess Bride
25
Bill is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Old Man Characters in Film
David Carradine in Kill Bill Volume 1