Josh Brolin's been a busy man. From portraying two of Marvel's most iconic heroes and villains back to back to being the world's fastest diaper changer for his five-month-old baby, it really doesn't get much more impressive. Brolin has a history of playing the tough guy in many different capacities, from the aforementioned roles of Thanos in the Avengers movies and Cable in Deadpool 2 to more gentler yet still badass parts in movies like Men in Black 3.
Brolin says he loves to play Thanos, so between his most well-known roles and all of his future characters to come, we're sure we haven't even witnessed his most renegade role yet.
10 "Bigfoot" Bjornsen
Another film that suffered from complicated writing but won accolades for its fantastic cast and acting, 2014's Inherent Vice starred Josh Brolin as Lieutenant Detective Christian F. "Bigfoot" Bjornsen, another corrupt cop who keeps you guessing until the end. Did he entrap Doc, the film's protagonist? Is he really going to help him in his search for Mickey?
In the end, Brolin's character continues to be a two-faced cop, planting heroin on Doc after all. Brolin does some of his best staring-down-the-suspect glares in this film, even if said suspect is one that he framed in the first place.
9 Brand Walsh
Can we start by saying how amazing is it for your first film credit to be The Goonies? Working with Steven Spielberg right off the bat while you start your movie career is pretty badass alone, but Brandon Walsh, the big brother of the group, is also someone to admire.
Sure, his parents' wrath is what fuels him to find Mikey and his pals, but he's a good teenager who does everything he can to do it, even if it's humiliating. He's a better boyfriend for Andy Carmichael than Troy, he risks his own life to save others and he's tender with his little brother. That's all pretty commendable for a tough teen in any movie, past or present.
8 Jonah Hex
The movie was a big, fat flop, but no one can argue that Josh Brolin makes a great bounty hunter. 2010's Jonah Hex lost a ridiculous amount of money, and the idea of Native Americans giving a Confederate cavalryman special powers is just dumb, but Jonah Hex himself impressively took names and kicked butt.
It's a story that's been told many times about a father bent on revenge for his family, but Hex does some heroic antics we can't ignore, from resurrecting corpses to using evil henchmen to off their own leader. The movie is so outrageous it's almost funny ("I want you to be Sherriff of the entire United States, son!") but Hex is certainly one tough cookie.
7 Agent K
Wholesome and charming, young Agent K doesn't appear to be all that threatening, but he is a powerful agent of Men in Black who respects his coworkers and aliens, even pretending to enjoy an alien dinner to be polite, uses cunning subterfuge instead of violence whenever possible yet also isn't afraid to behead someone at the bowling alley to get the job done.
Brolin was the perfect pick to play the younger version of Tommy Lee Jones, and his role as Agent K proved to be both one of his most badass as well as most adorable, which isn't an easy feat.
6 Detective Nick Trupo
Blackmailing career criminal Frank Lucas doesn't sound like the brightest idea, but Detective Nick Trupo did just that in American Gangster. The corrupted cop was far from Brolin's toughest role, but you have to admit he's got guts to start this war between the La Grange gangster and the NYPD. He raids Lucas's house, takes out his dog and acts like he doesn't even care about the consequences.
This film was nominated for twenty-one awards for a reason, and while some critics still found fault with lackluster writing and the poetic license the film took with the true story, it was packed with tense action and a lot of tough guys bent on taking one another out.
In Avengers: Infinity War, Thanos takes out the world with the snap of his fingers, so why shouldn't he be at the top of the list? Because he's just not as badass as some of Brolin's other roles. He's the Mad Titan who thinks he's god (or is obsessed with Death, if you read the comics), unjustly takes out a bunch of people and couldn't beat Captain Marvel, Scarlet Witch and probably a bunch of the other Avengers without the Infinity Gauntlet. He also sacrificed the person he loved most rather than protecting her, which isn't badass at all.
That's not as tough as some of these roles where he was so much scrappier and able to take names and kick butt without magic props. Thanos is still pretty scary, no doubt, but Brolin's been scarier.
4 Joe Doucett
In Spike Lee's 2013's neo-noir action thriller Oldboy, Josh Brolin stars as Joe Doucett, a man who is captured and locked up before being blamed for his wife's brutal demise. It's a pretty bleak existence where all he can think about is revenge on the people who did it to him as well as revenge for his family. This experience could break any number of people and we wouldn't blame them, but Doucett only uses it as fuel for his rage when he finally gets to enact his comeuppance.
It's a super violent movie and it wasn't considered a success by any means, especially since it was a remake of a South Korean film that happened ten years earlier and didn't really add much to it, but it definitely makes us think twice about meeting up with Josh Brolin with a hammer.
3 Matt Graver
One of the best films of 2015, Sicario was an incredible crime thriller that not only kept viewers on the edge of their seats but highlighted government corruption to the extreme. Brolin's character, Matt Graver, is a CIA Agent who seems legit for maybe five minutes before his questionable methods are soon revealed.
Graver is willing to use his own team members as bait to further his mission, which isn't ultimately to bring any perpetrators in but to ensure that the cartel operators easiest for the U.S. to control remain in power. It's not his most honorable character by any means but Graver is definitely not someone to mess around with.
2 Llewellyn Moss
2007's No Country for Old Men was an incredible movie that shook and stayed with us days after seeing it, as many of author Cormac McCarthy's works are wont to do. Josh Brolin completely did Llewellyn Moss justice as a former Vietnam vet and poacher who decides to take on brutal hitman Anton Chigurh in an attempt to keep two million bucks he found in a drug deal gone bad.
It's Chigurh's chilling methods that really make this movie, but the tension between Brolin and Javier Bardem is fantastic, resulting in one of the best gunfight scenes of the year.
While Cable's story was super simplified to fit into the Deadpool films, Josh Brolin gave this complicated character his all and still managed to bring him to life. Nathan Summers is a futuristic warrior with incredible strength, resilience and a cybernetic left arm and eye. Yes, he travels back to take out a kid, which isn't so impressive until you realize it's to save the entire future from becoming an Apocalyptic wasteland.
Cunning, skilled at combat and willing to compromise to further his mission, Cable is a rebel with a cause and we love him for it. We can't wait to see him reprise the role.