We take a look back at some of the best cinematic villains of the year…

THOR: THE DARK WORLD is released in Irish cinemas this week, and brings the ever evil Loki, played by Tom Hiddleston, back to our screens. Although Loki may not be the main villain of the piece, he is still one of the most evil cinematic characters we have seen in a Hollywood movie in a long time; with this in mind, we took a look back at the other villains of 2013, and chose five of the best.

Aldrich Killian – IRON MAN 3

Another Marvel villain starts us off. Played by Guy Pearce in IRON MAN 3, Killian is not only a man hell bent on revenge, but he weaves a twisted and complicated web for Tony Stark to fight his way through, all while dealing with the fall out from the battle of New York in AVENGER’S ASSEMBLE. Phew! Of course, Killian is just one of two villains in IRON MAN 3, but the fact that he takes a back seat for much of the film, and hides behind a smoke screen of suavity, only makes him that little more villainous.

John Harrison – STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS

When announced, Benedict Cumberbatch’s casting in STAR TREK INTO DARKNESS was the subject of much curiosity. Those of us who have seen the film know that Harrison has a large and evil agenda, but we also know there is an odd vein of loyalty and love running through his schemes. Cumberbatch brought us a shouty, broody and twisty villain, and although some parts of his performance may have been a little over the top, we just loved seeing Sherlock play a character who was not ‘on the side of the angels’.

General Zod – MAN OF STEEL

Michael Shannon has made a name for himself by playing characters who exist on the fringes of humanity, so it was a welcome change to see him play a character hell bent on destruction and devastation, with an army of support behind him. General Zod takes on the people of Earth in his search for the missing son of Krypton, and of course, an epic battle ensues. We love a good villain, and especially one who is completely over the top in his attempts to find one man.

The Zombies – WORLD WAR Z

OK, so an entire planet full of zombies may not be the traditional idea of a villain, but make no mistake; these zombies are as interested in destroying the world as General Zod is. All of the fear and tension in WORLD WAR Z comes from the impending arrival of the zombies, and when they do make an appearance, they are fast, organised and uncompromising. In other words, terrifying. After a slew of films that romanticise the undead, including this year’s WARM BODIES, it was great to see zombies doing what they do best; wreaking havoc.

Calvin Candie – DJANGO UNCHAINED

Suave, sophisticated and utterly intimidating, Calvin Candie marked the first time that Leonardo DiCaprio has played a true villain, and it is obvious that he had a whole lot of fun doing so. Calvin Candie is a pot of passive aggression with a whole lot of menace bubbling under the surface, and Schultz and Django’s unwillingness to take him on, leads to a whole lot of tension and some brilliant dialogue from Tarantino.

Who is your favourite movie villain of 2013? Do you have love for Jodie Foster in ELYSIUM or the alien robots in THE WORLD’S END? Let us know in the comments below.

THOR: THE DARK WORLD is in Irish cinemas from October 30th

Words: Brogen Hayes