14 Movies Bogged Down With Too Many Villains

List Rules
Vote up the movies that needed fewer villains.

Have you ever stopped to think about how many Hollywood movies have a ton of villains filling up the screen time? Seriously, movies with multiple villains have become a dime a dozen these days. A lot of that can be narrowed down to the popularity of superhero films (why does every comic book movie need more than one cackling bad guy to show up?) and how they've basically taken over the box office. But all kinds of movies, both good and bad, can struggle under the weight of multiple villains.

Fantastic movies like Batman Begins and Casino Royale suffer from serious villain bloat while kind of just making it work anyway. On the other hand, you have The Amazing Spider-Man 2 and X-Men Origins: Wolverine that really do not make it work at all. So call in some backup and scroll on down as we run through a roll call of flicks filled to the brim with antagonists.


  • 1
    479 VOTES

    To be fair to Spider-Man 3 director/co-writer Sam Raimi, he didn't want to include three major Spider-Man villains in his 2007 threequel. No, he merely wanted a story that focused on Sandman and Harry Osborn's Green Goblin. Instead, he was coerced into involving the fan-favorite Venom - thanks, Avi Arad! - and screenplay bloat set in as a consequence. While the finished product has its fans, it does feel like the least-focused of Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy, and that makes sense.

    Having the prerequisite Peter Parker-Mary Jane Watson drama and finalizing Harry's heel turn on top of introducing the Sandman, the Venom symbiote, and Eddie Brock is just too tall an order for a single screenplay to handle. As a result, Venom feels entirely undercooked while Harry doesn't get enough time to shine as the new Green Goblin. The only character that really came out unscathed was Thomas Haden Church's fantastic portrayal of Sandman. Spider-Man 3's Flint Marko is up there with Willem Dafoe's Green Goblin, J.K. Simmons's J. Jonah Jameson, and Alfred Molina's Doctor Octopus as one of the best characters in the series.

    479 votes

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  • We suppose the moviegoers of the world should give thanks to Sony for committing the cardinal sin of filmic world-building when it attempted to stuff a room full of Sinister Six-related gear down audiences' throats. If Sony hadn't been so blatant with its desire to create a Spider-Man cinematic universe without laying the proper groundwork, we never would've gotten Tom Holland's Peter Parker in the first place. And we certainly wouldn't have gotten to delight at Holland, Andrew Garfield, and Tobey Maguire teaming up Spider-Verse-style. 

    As if the studio learned nothing from the Spider-Man 3 debacle of forcing Venom into the film no matter the cost, Sony really went all out for The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Paul Giamatti bookends the film as a laughable version of the Rhino. Jamie Foxx is doing something (?) as Electro. Dane DeHaan tries to make people care about Harry Osborn in a few scenes before going full-on Green Goblin. But, really, it is the Norman Osborn/Gustav Fiers-related room of supervillain origins that is most offensive. Why does each member of the Sinister Six need to have their genesis be related to Oscorp? We see Vulture's wings, Doctor Octopus's tentacles, and the Rhino's suit just sitting in the Oscorp building! Man, that movie is so misguided.  

    355 votes

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  • 3
    347 VOTES

    Okay, Batman & Robin's main issue probably isn't that it has too many villains. Realistically, it's merely a crappy movie that you have to be in the right frame of mind to enjoy. Go in with a couple of friends expecting some dumb, campy fun, and you'll have an okay time. If you're looking for anything else, Batman & Robin probably isn't the flick for you. But, let's talk about the many baddies who show up in this 1997 not-so-classic superhero film.

    Arnold Schwarzenegger's Mr. Freeze is pretty much reviled by everyone who is into Batman because he takes the nuanced villain and turns him into a one-liner-spewing hack of a character. Uma Thurman is clearly having a blast as Poison Ivy, and she just might be the only actually good thing about the entire project. Robert Swenson's Bane is a complete waste of space that has nothing to do with the comic book supervillain he's based on and was an obvious inclusion to sell more toys. Weirdly, it is the final two "villains" from the movie that are most puzzling. John Glover momentarily appears as Jason Woodrue, AKA the Floronic Man, which is a waste of a terrifying evil-doer, and Coolio (yes, Coolio) has a blink-and-you'll-miss-it cameo as a guy who is apparently supposed to be the Scarecrow? Batman & Robin is a mess.

    347 votes

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  • X-Men Origins: Wolverine has the dubious honor of being known as the worst of the X-Men films. Although, let's be real... you can take your pick of X-Men: The Last StandX-Men: ApocalypseDark Phoenix, and The New Mutants, and no one can argue with you in good faith. They're all different flavors of bad, but bad nonetheless. That being said, X-Men Origins: Wolverine just feels worse than those other movies. Maybe it's what they did to Ryan Reynolds's Deadpool years before his own movie set things right. Maybe it was giving the Black Eyed Peas' will.i.am his live-action acting debut. Maybe it was all the shoddy CGI. Who's to say?

    One thing is for sure: There are way too many bad guys throughout X-Men Origins: Wolverine's scant run time. Liev Schreiber is there as Victor Creed, AKA Sabretooth. Danny Huston is doing Danny Huston things as General William Stryker. Kevin Durand barely registers as Fred Dukes, AKA the Blob. Daniel Henney has a few scenes as Agent Zero. And, of course, Ryan Reynolds is the final villain as a vocally castrated version of the Merc with a Mouth. There are bigger problems with X-Men Origins: Wolverine than villain glut, but it sure doesn't help things.

    367 votes

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  • J.J. Abrams, Kathleen Kennedy, and the rest of the people behind The Rise of Skywalker found that usurping a villain is so nice, they figured they'd do it twice. In the same movie! Not only does Emperor Palpatine return to regain his crown as the main baddie from Kylo Ren, but the production team also decided it was a good idea to introduce Richard E. Grant as Allegiant General Pryde and demote Domhnall Gleeson's Hux to a Rebel spy who gets unceremoniously killed off after being an important character in the previous two films. 

    We don't know how you feel about these story choices, but it kind of seems like they were flying by the seat of their pants when coming up with the story for The Rise of Skywalker. Palpatine takes all the bite out of Kylo Ren, making his turn from the dark to the light seem less impactful in the end. Pryde essentially replaces Hux for no reason, making everyone wonder why he wasn't in The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi if he is so important. And poor Hux is comedically gunned down by a superior officer. Star Wars, everybody!

    270 votes

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  • A hot tip for whoever is working on the Marvel Cinematic Universe's attempt to finally bring a good Fantastic Four film to the world: Don't try to tell a Doctor Doom story, a Silver Surfer story, and a Galactus story all in the same movie. Especially when only one of them has been introduced in a prior film. Doom, the Surfer, and the Devourer of Worlds are all major Marvel players, and trying to adapt "The Galactus Trilogy" into a 92-minute movie seems like a fool's errand.

    Good luck getting a mainstream audience on board with both an alien humanoid that flies around on a silver surfboard and a cosmic entity that survives by chowing down on entire planets. All in an hour and a half? Yeah, right. Throw in the Fantastic Four's hot-and-cold relationship with Andre Braugher's General Hager, and you almost have four villains! 

    263 votes

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