5 Movie Villains That Were Misunderstood

5 Movie Villains That Were Misunderstood
5 Movie Villains That Were Misunderstood

In the vast landscape of movie plots, there is always a villain that is misunderstood. The scripts always portray heroes in the spotlight, while the villains often find themselves cast as the architects of chaos. Their wicked deeds are undeniably cruel, and it just seems right for justice to prevail in the end. However, there are moments when the lines between good and evil blur. That wavering moral line where it’s hard to distinguish between black and white. 

In this case, it’s distinguishing between villains and mere victims of circumstance. Such complicated characters once deemed villains, elicit a peculiar empathy within viewers simply because it’s easier to understand the intricacies of their motivations and the pain that fuels their actions. So, who are the monstrous villains, or more realistically, troubled souls who may deserve a little more than redemption? Let’s delve into it. 

1. Killmonger – Black Panther


Black Panther was released in the early months of 2018, introducing many to the fictional world of Wakanda. With its exciting new plot came fascinating characters like T’Challa, played by Chadwick Boseman of beloved memory. There was also Ramonda played by Angela Basset, and Nakia played by Lupita N’Yongo. Then, along came Kilmonger, the villain Wakanda didn’t know it had. 

But what made Kilmonger (Michael B. Jordan) so obviously misunderstood has to be the motive. Watching that Wakanda jet fly by before discovering his father’s lifeless body in their apartment certainly did a number on him. Plus, wasn’t his revenge mostly fueled by a young boy’s need to finish what his father started? At the end of the day, Kilmonger is undoubtedly a villain that is misunderstood. He also managed to pull off “the end justifies the means” excuse for his villainy. 

2. Mr. Rooney – Ferris Bueller’s Day Off

5 Movie Villains That Were Misunderstood

In the beloved 1986 comedy Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Rooney plays the iconic Dean of Students. He is frequently portrayed as the clumsy antagonist whose only goal is to catch Ferris Bueller skipping school. However, there’s more to his conniving and obsessive nature. Rooney, played by Jeffrey Jones, embodies that comical and vindictive demeanor that can be easily misconstrued. 

However, when considered more in-depth, Rooney is just another villain that is misunderstood in a movie. Think about it, the Dean was trying to be the best version of a law-abiding citizen. Additionally, Rooney was trying to curtail the excesses of Ferris, who was manipulative and overly cunning when you think about it. Was an ambitiously notorious student going to get away with various shenanigans that could dent the integrity and moral standards of Glenbrook North High School? Not on Rooney’s watch, even though that meant going to extreme lengths. 

3. Wicked Witch of the West – The Wizard of Oz

5 Movie Villains That Were Misunderstood

When talking about villains that were misunderstood in a movie, the Wicked Witch of the West has to come to mind. The character was initially brought to life in L. Frank Baum’s novel “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”. in the 1939 film adaptation, the visuals of her characters’ ‘wickedness’ probably overshadow her motives and, perhaps, even her true nature. 

The Wicked Witch of the West, who lives in the fictional land of Oz, is characterized by her green skin, pointy nose, and all-black ensemble. However, a deeper look into her backstory undoubtedly triggers human compassion. Take, for instance, the already grim skin color she was born with. She faced a lot of discrimination and stigmatization from the people of Oz based on her appearance. Prequels to Baum’s novel shed more light on the wicked witch’s identity and why the sad events in her life pushed her  to her woeful demise.

Then there’s the fact that Dorothy, the protagonist of the drama, was realistically to blame for some of the witch’s mishaps. First of all, Dorothy’s house kills the Wicked Witch of the West’s sister. Then Dorothy still takes her sister’s magical ruby shoes off her corpse. Who wouldn’t be ticked off by that?

4. Sharpay Evans – High School Musical Franchise


This may not be subject to popular opinion, but wasn’t Sharpay (Ashley Tisdale) focused on ensuring her dreams come true? Any motivational speaker out there would encourage people of all ages to stay ambitious and be goal-getters. So when Sharpay tried her best to keep Gabriella far away from the sought-after lead roles, she was being a ‘determined young lady’ who knew what she wanted, right? 

It’s true that the high school diva was very flamboyant, seemingly selfish, and, well, privileged. Plus, there were more subtle and kind ways to keep her foot in the door. In her defense, Sharpay may have been driven by a deep-seated fear of losing the spotlight she had worked for over the years. 

A more vulnerable side of Sharpay is revealed as the movie progresses, minimal as they were. Still, her sharp wit and strong determination make her a villain that was misunderstood. At least she tried to help Troy achieve his basketball dreams. Plus, Troy and Gabriella, played by Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens, took on the roles out of a new-found love for theater. Sharpay always loved the spotlight. In today’s world, that focused sense of self and determination is more than applauded across professions and industries.

5. Yzma – The Emperor’s New Groove

5 Movie Villains That Were Misunderstood

Yzma is yet another villain who was misunderstood in a movie. She’s a tough one to defend but still misconstrued. Yzma is a trusted advisor to the emperor, and her initial portrayal is that of a power-hungry usurper. But what if Yzma was actually just good at her job? A driven, misconstrued villain who was picking up the slack of the emperor and making sure things were done right? Plus, her character is really put on display after she gets fired and, in typical villain style, seeks revenge. So, there’s no real back story into any of the ‘good’ she may have done while Kuzco was busy with summer getaway plans. 

Let’s not get into the fact that Kuzco, the emperor, wasn’t the most humble or morally-attuned person. He was self-absorbed, egotistical, and kind of unfit to rule. Plus, too many people can relate to slightly disliking a boss or superior, especially one who is a bit unbearable. So, while Yzma shouldn’t have tried to kill Kuzco, he was quite aloof and wasn’t initially the best fit for emperor.

Main Heading Goes Here
Sub Heading Goes Here
No, thank you. I do not want.
100% secure your website.