10Darth Vader - The Star Wars Series
Darth Vader is a classic case of a good apple gone bad. Whereas a lot of movie villains have no back story other than being born somewhat wrong, the man behind the most famous helmet in the universe was once a little blonde angel called Anakin Skywalker.
Unfortunately, anger and hate, sprinkled liberally with a dose of abandonment and a side order of borderline personality disorder, get the better of young Anakin, thus triggering six Star Wars films in the process, with a seventh on its way.
Make no mistake, the story of Star Wars is the story of Vader. It’s no coincidence that the high point of the prequels is Anakin’s painful and harrowing transformation into Darth in Revenge of the Sith.
Vader is so powerful as a villain because, though he may initially come across as some sort of psychopathic cyborg, audience soon realize the core of his high evil has a human heart and a human face. It’s left to an earnest young Luke Skywalker to become a mirror to that evil, and eventually the Jedi’s old dad sees the big picture, recognizes himself in his only son and seeks redemption in a tragedy of Oedipal-sized proportions.
Vader is unique among all the other villains on this list in that not only is he corrupted by evil he is also eventually redeemed by good, and so his tale ends. But what a ride, eh?