The 10 best Ralph Fiennes characters, ranked from heroic to villainous

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Out in cinemas this November, the menu is one of the most exciting horror films of the year and also a hilarious satire about the superficial world of the rich that crumbles at the hands of the sadistic chef of an exclusive restaurant.

The chef is played by none other than Ralph Fiennes, certainly one of the first names that comes to mind when the topic is a good villain role. However, throughout his career, Fiennes took on many distinctive projects, some of them surprisingly heroic.


10/10 M. Gustave – The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)

Ralph Fiennes as M Gustave in the lobby of The Grand Budapest Hotel

Every now and then there is a man who seems made for his time and place and in the world of The Grand Hotel BudapestI, this man is Mr. Gustave. A caring friend full of love at heart and also a competent concierge at a luxury European hotel, he encapsulates all the best traits of Wes Anderson’s films, from his eccentric nature to his excitement for quirky adventures.

Related: 10 Saddest Deaths in Wes Anderson Movies

M. Gustave is not the first character that comes to mind when it comes to heroes, but Gustave certainly died as one, killed by fascists while defending his beloved comrade, Zero.

9/10 Orlando Oxford – The King’s Man (2021)

Ralph Fiennes in The Kingsman

Fans might argue that Kingsman The franchise is losing steam, but Ralph Fiennes certainly carried the last film as Orlando Oxford, a quirky fictional spy also known as the Duke of Oxford.

As well as being the first Arthur and the founder of the Kingsman agency who saved the world countless times along the way, Oxford pioneered espionage techniques ahead of his time, mastering the multiple criminals who shared the ‘common goal of plotting a war. and use the Kingsman agency as a tribute to his son.

8/10 M – No Time to Die (2012)

Ralph Fiennes as M in his office in No Time to Die

Although Ralph Fiennes had the potential to play James Bond himself, he was cast as M and appeared for the first time Skyfallacting as an intermediary between the M16 and the British government.

His name is Gareth Mallory and, as expected, he became the new head of the Secret Intelligence Service. M had a difficult past as a prisoner of war, which explains his detachment from social circles, although he still manages to do his job well, overseeing conspiracies and jumping into action whenever he feels the need to intervene. For someone working in the government, he is lucid and open to new perspectives, gradually building a relationship of mutual trust with Bond over the course of the past films.

7/10 Lenny Nero – Strange Days (1995)

Ralph Finnes and Angela Bassett in Strange Days

It is difficult to even describe the succession of atrocities that Lenny Nero witnessed Strange Daysbut he still manages to keep his mind straight and find peace in a cyberpunk world plagued by ultra-violence.

Related: The 10 Best Cyberpunk Movies, According to Reddit

Lenny Nero is an ex-cop turned con artist who decides to use his detective skills after coming across a mysterious disc containing memories of a murder. Although his methods are violent and he is forced to resort to gruesome acts before enjoying the turn of the millennium, his true nature remains unscathed, as the final scene suggests.

6/10 Heathcliff – Wuthering Heights (1992)

Ralph Fiennes in Wuthering Heights-1

One of the most popular characters in literature, Heathcliff is an eccentric anti-hero; growing up as an ambitious and romantic nobleman, he is gradually consumed by an obsessive love that leads him to become an angry and unreliable man who constantly puts himself and those he loves in danger.

Heacliff’s true nature is undeniably good, but his family environment, plus the snake pit he lives in, brings out the worst version of him.

5/10 Harry Waters – In Bruges (2008)

Ralph Fiennes in Bruges

Martin McDonaugh’s specialty is playing with justice and morality as if it were a disposable toy, which explains why In BrugesThe main antagonist, Harry Waters, is supposedly the only principled person in the film, which leads to a funny line.

In Bruges is a caustic black comedy about two hitmen and colleagues tricked by Harry into committing suicide. Harry continues to engage in a variety of horrific acts throughout the film, but insists that if he ever killed a child, he would take his own life. No one could count on the villain’s stupidity at the end, when he accidentally kills an actor with dwarfism, mistakes him for a child, and shoots himself in the head.

Poster of Ralph Fiennes in The Menu

In the menu, Slowik is one of the most successful chefs in the world. His exclusive restaurant is located on a remote island he owns, and his lavish menu is meticulously crafted according to the preferences of each of the select guests who have enough money to pay for a reservation. His reputation was certainly untouchable until he suddenly decided to unleash his rage on the rich with a new menu full of shocking surprises.

While Chef Slowik’s motivations are solid and viewers can almost find themselves rooting for the villain, his sadistic methods are truly terrifying and his determined attitude prevents anyone from changing their minds as he carries out a disturbing plan.

3/10 Francis Dolarhyde – Red Dragon (2002)

cDolarhyde by Ralph Fiennes

Francis Dolarhyde is a ruthless serial killer from the Hannibal Lecter universe, also known as The Tooth Fairy for his fixation on biting his victims and his nocturnal habits. Dolarhyde’s ruthless methods include killing his victims’ pets before proceeding to murder his entire family.

Related: 7 Reasons You Should Watch Hannibal

Dolarhyde went through a childhood marked by constant abuse, which led him to develop psychopathic impulses such as killing animals and other absurd behaviors, including devouring paintings. He left a disturbing trail of blood after he was finally caught by Will Graham.

2/10 Voldemort – Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)

Voldemort casting a spell while calling out to Harry Potter.

Ralph Fiennes’ performance as Voldemort aged like wine as fans continue to be impressed by how the actor nailed even the book villain’s mannerisms.

Voldemort is unanimously considered one of the best villains of all time and embodies all the evil that inhabits the world of Harry Potter, which explains why the franchise only got darker as the villain got stronger. Voldemort is a ruthless dark wizard incapable of love, which ends up being his greatest weakness but doesn’t stop him from leaving a trail of blood and almost taking over Hogwarts.

1/10 Amon Göth – Schindler’s List (1993)

Ralph Fiennes as Amon Goeth

There is no one more evil than a real life Nazi officer. Ralph Fiennes nails the terrifying role of the man who served as commandant of the Kraków-Płaszów concentration camp in German-occupied Poland for most of the war, holding him responsible for the deaths of thousands of Jews.

In the film, he is one of the main officers involved in the transition from ghettos to concentration camps, sending the remaining inhabitants to the miserable Plaszów camp and ordering the SS to kill the rest.

More: 10 scariest Ralph Fiennes characters that will give you chills

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