Seriously, who doesn’t enjoy a movie in which hundreds of things explode and thousands of asses are kicked?  Well, I absolutely love these movies.  And many of these times, these movies don’t even have that good of a plot (with the exception of any Tarantino movie), they just have extremely badass actors.  For example, the Transporter series.  They are all basically the same, and they are definitely not that good if you think about it.  However, with an actor like Jason Statham as the star of the movie, how can one say that movie is not awesome?  They’re not good movies, but they are definitely badass movies, which are completely different things.  Here is a list of the actors who, in my opinion, deserve the award of the Most Badass Actors.*

*Note:  The actors are not in order, that’s up to everyone to decide.

1. Robert De Niro

Machete Robert De Niro

Most Badass Movie: Goodfellas

Most Badass Quote:  “You learned the two greatest things in life, never rat on your friends, and always keep your mouth shut.” – Jimmy Conway, Goodfellas

Let’s start off with one of the best and most badass actors of all time, Robert De Niro.  He has been portraying badasses for most of his career, in movies such as Taxi DriverGoodfellas, and Machete.  This guy is basically one of the first images that pop to someone’s head when the word “badass” is said.  He usually plays that character in every action movie with a face that says, “I’m about to fuck you up for good.”  Even in his not-so-good movies, like Righteous Kill, he is able to give out a performance worthy of being called “badass.”  The aspect that makes him such a badass is probably his looks.  Whenever I see him, I instantly think of an Italian mobster, and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only who thinks that he looks like one.  And not only this, he can also portray the best Italian mobster.  I mean, have you not seen Goodfellas?  De Niro gives one of the best, if not the best, portrayals of an Italian mobster that I have ever seen.  He is able to blend that seriousness that an Italian mobster is supposed  to give out to people with a touch of humor, and they go together perfectly, thanks to him.  He is like this in most of his movies, an absolute badass.

Here is a clip from Goodfellas.  As you can see, Robert De Niro does not even need to talk to tell everyone that he is, in fact, a badass.

2. Samuel Jackson


Most Badass Movie: Pulp Fiction (Is that even a question, really?)

Most Badass Quote: “Say ‘what’ again. Say ‘what’ again. I dare you! I double-dare you, motherfucker!” – Jules Winnfield, Pulp Fiction

This list would not be the list of the most badass actors if Samuel Jackson was not in it.  In one of his first movies, Coming to America, in which he has a 2 or 3 minute role, he already showed signs of a soon-to-be badass.  He then went on to give one of the most badass performances in the history of cinema, when he played Jules Winnfield in what is arguably Tarantino’s best movie to date, Pulp Fiction.  With this movie, Samuel Jackson stood on top of the film world and asked people, “Step aside!  The King of Badasses is on his way!”  Samuel Jackson is always able to show authority in his movies, which is probably the aspect that makes him such a badass, and a great actor likewise.  He says his lines with such power, that I’m sure even the Schwarzenegger from Terminator would bow down and kiss his feet.  And not only this, think about all the movies in which he says the word “fuck.”  He says it with an extreme frequency.  However, people would say that this is just excessive.  Well, maybe, if it was someone else saying it.  But Samuel Jackson is able to say this word in such a way that it even sounds poetic.  Hell, this word might even be his catchphrase for all I know.  Who can forget his awesome quote in Snakes on a Plane?  ” I’ve had it with these mothafuckin’ snakes, on this mothafuckin’ plane!”  Just.  Plain.  Beautiful.

Here’s what might be Samuel Jackson’s best, and most badass scene, taken from Pulp Fiction.

3. Sigourney Weaver


Most Badass Movie: Alien

Most Badass Quote: “Micro changes in air density, my ass” -Ellen Ripley, Alien

At first, I was thinking about putting Denzel Washington in the list, who is, in fact, a complete badass.  But then, out of a sudden,  I remembered… Sigourney Weaver!  Even if others would not like to accept it, Sigourney Weaver has been a symbol of “badassism” since her Alien movies.  She is one of the few actresses that are able to leave the same impression in an audience that they would get from watching a Samuel Jackson movie.  She can communicate a sense of power and great leadership through her acting and lines in all of her movies, the Alien movies, Avatar, and so much more.  Lately, she has had some cameos in movies that are, in some way, funny, but are perfect, because it shows her as a character who actually has a big repercussion throughout the movie, but is never really seen until the end.   For those of you who are interested in knowing what movies these are, just ask me or Google it; I don’t want to spoil it for anyone.

Here’s a look at how badass Sigourney Weaver is.

4. Bruce Willis

Bruce Willis En La Jungla De Cristal En Su Papel de John McClane

Most Badass Movie: Die Hard

Most Badass Quote: “Yippee ki-yay, motherfucker.” – John McClane, Die Hard

Pick up a dictionary, any dictionary.  Go to the letter “B.”  Now, look up the word “badass.”  There is a huge possibility that it will just show a picture of Bruce Willis.  Bruce Willis is one of the original movie badasses.  When one thinks of action movies, it is almost for sure that this guy will pop in your head.  And for good reasons.  All of his movies, no matter if they’re good or bad, show how much of a badass Bruce Willis is.  His emotionless face, his small-talk roles, his tough guy attitude… It all adds up to make him one of the biggest badasses in the history of Hollywood.  Bruce Willis is just the type of actor that I explained before.  He can make an awesome and badass movie from a not-so-good or just plain bad movie.  Take for example the movies he has come out with lately, like G.I. Joe: Retaliation.  Even though I have not watched it,  based on the critics’ reviews,  I am absolutely sure that it sucks.  However, I am also sure that every scene that has Bruce Willis in it, be it an action sequence or just dialogue, are not good, but badass, thanks entirely to the presence of Bruce Willis in it.

One of my all-time favorite scenes involving Bruce Willis, taken from Red:

5. Liam Neeson


Most Badass Movie: Taken

Most Badass Quote: “I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you want. If you are looking for ransom, I can tell you I don’t have money. But what I do have are a very particular set of skills; skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you. If you let my daughter go now, that’ll be the end of it. I will not look for you, I will not pursue you. But if you don’t, I will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you.” – Bryan Mills, Taken (It’s impossible to just put one part of this quote, it’s just that badass.)

The one, the only, Liam Neeson.  He had already made his way into the gang of badasses when he played Qui-Gon Jinn in Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, and got ranked even higher amongst the badasses with his role in Batman Begins as Ra’s al Ghul.  But his high peak of “badassism” was reached in 2008, when he played Bryan Mills in the top box office hit Taken.  With this movie, Liam Neeson told everyone that there was a new badass in town, and that he was not playing games.  Liam Neeson has since demonstrated that age has no effect in him (like basically every actor in this list).  There is, though, one thing that makes Liam Neeson different from many badass actors.  Even though his action sequences are all extremely awesome and stylish, the thing that makes him such a badass is how he is able to let his dialogue flow out naturally.  What I mean by this is that he is a great at “speaking” his lines, not just saying them.  He is able to create tension through his dialogue, something that only a few number of actors can do.  Take for example his famous scene in Taken in which he talks to his daughter’s kidnapper.  I am sure that not many actors would have been able to nail that speech as well as he did.  The audience is left amazed after that speech and, most importantly, tense and wanting more.  And Taken is not the only movie in which he is able to do this.  In The Grey, he is able to do this too in the last scene of the movie.  These qualities are what make Liam Neeson such a badass and one of my favorite actors in general.

I’m sure you have seen this clip around 500 times already, but it is impossible to get bored from it.

Honorable Mentions

  1. Denzel Washington
  2. Danny Trejo
  3. Arnold Schwarzenegger
  4. Jason Statham
  5. Al Pacino

What do you think of this list?  What would yours look like?

  1. Peter-man says:

    Robert DiNiro’s famous “you talking to me?” line was completely improvised, as you might know, so I’ll allow him to be #1. But Sigourney Weaver above Bruce Willis?? Smdh.

    • celpupi says:

      I actually didn’t know that, that makes it even a more awesome quote haha. The actors are not in any order like I said in the beginnin, I just put them there. There is no doubt Bruce Willis is more badass than Sigourney Weaver haha.

  2. rcollazo99 says:

    Mostly agree, but Arnold goes in the Macho Man category, not in Badass. And you should know that!!! 🙂

    Good topic: Difference between Macho Man vs. Badass!!!

  3. HOrtiz says:

    I don’t know if you agree but Tom Cruise can be pretty Badass. Especially in Collateral…

  4. Richard says:

    cmon man…tell me you dont know Tom Hardy, Jason Statham, Gerard Butler, Charles Bronson, Charlie Hunnam and Mark Wahlberg…, Jeremy Renner, Daniel Craig, Hugh Jackman, Ray Winston, Tommy Flanagan, Jet Li, David O’Hara, Josh Brolin, Ben Foster, Norman Reedus, Philip Winchester, Sullivan Stapleton, Clive Owen, etc

    • celpupi says:

      Hahaha i do, and I agree that most of them are pretty badass. But I had to choose my 5 favorite, and these were the ones that I believed were the most badasses. What would your top 5 list look like?

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