When I think of villain monologues my first stop is Bond films. It’s a trope for every single one, some better than others.
Some favorite examples …
Gert Frobe playing Auric Goldfinger in Goldfinger:
- “No Mr. Bond, I expect you to DIE!”
A more recent Javier Bardem playing Raoul Silva in Skyfall:
Red Death from the Venture Brothers. He’s not even a major character or anything, appearing only in a handful of episodes in the last 2 seasons of the show. But his musing on the nature of hope here (and everything it implies) is pretty great.
I loved it in some of my favorite movies when the Alien said, huh, some noise. Or the Predator went all Grrr. Or who could forget that monologue by the Terminator (800 or 1000, they were both equally talkative)?
I mean, sure, there’s room for a monologue, but it’s not a requirement. Also, Alan Rickman. Just any movie where he plays the bad guy, from the obvious (Die Hard), to cut your heart out with a spoon.
This scene doesn’t exist in video form, so I’m transcribing it here, from RRR:
(spoken by Governor Scott as a British soldier is about to shoot a villager in the head)
Do you comprehend the value of the bullet in your barrel? It was manufactured in an English factory using English metals. It crossed the seven seas in an English vessel. By the time it reached the barrel of your gun, it cost one Pound. One Pound Sterling! And you would want to squander it on… glances down… Brown rubbish?
Clear the road.
I particularly like how he gives the same monologue multiple times during the movie, showing he believes he is being profound but is actually just uncreative. And then I like how the same monologue is subverted and delivered by a different person in a different context later in the movie.
Not technically a monologue, but coffee’s for closers.
Hell yes. He was excellent as the villains and also excellent for requisite monologues.
This isn’t exactly a monologue, but the Chancellor is playing his protégé like a master pianist at the piano. Every line from Anakin has been carefully prompted, as Palpatine remolds his ethics to be as fluid as the aquarobic opera unfolding before them.
And as bad as bringing down a galactic government and perverting a Jedi warrior to forsake his vows might be, they’re also talking in the theater.
Oh man he was great.
The actor says he can’t help but release that spittle when singing, but it completes the character and song well!
…is a reaction both most appropriate and impossible to reply with on QT3. As it technically should be.
But seriously, that’s got to be one of the few genuinely good things George Lucas managed to write in the prequel era. The entire political coup undercurrent of the prequel trilogy, particularly in Phantom Menace, doesn’t get nearly enough credit for being as believable and disturbingly prescient as it was. It’s right up there with having the guts to portray Anakin committing a Jedi school massacre right after Columbine, only to have it ring frighteningly true for decades to follow, echoing back in the Obi-Wan series.
George Lucas got a lot wrong with the prequels, and those problems are many and terrible, but this wasn’t one of them. It’s a shame he couldn’t have written the rest of Anakin’s fall as well as that scene.