Travis Bickle. Darth Vader. Ellen Ripley. What do they all have in common? They're among the most famous character names in movie history. You hear those names and you immediately know what film is being discussed. Movie names are important because they tell us a lot about the characters. Calling an unseen criminal mastermind “Keyser Soze” in The Usual Suspects adds to his mystery. At the other end of the spectrum, you have a name like “Dr. Michael Hfuhruhurr,” the character played by Steve Martin in The Man with Two Brains, that lets you know the guy is more than a little on the silly side.
Then you have those characters who are never formally identified onscreen. Their names are never spoken, and the credits list them as “Man” or “She,” or something utterly nondescript. It's more common than you might think. The following movies all have major unnamed characters. In each instance, there's a very likely reason why the filmmakers did so. Even if you don't know what to call these people, they make indelible impressions, proving that names are useful, but not necessarily a requirement.
- Photo: 20th Century Fox
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- Photo: Warner Bros. Pictures
- Photo: Summit Entertainment