Top 10 Film Villains Who Had Justifiable Motives

  • Published on May 5, 2018
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    Top 10 Film Villains Who Had Justifiable Motives
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    You know, these bad guys sorta had a point. From Syndrome, to Raoul Silva, to Roy Batty, these villains had goals that made sense. WatchMojo counts down the top film villains with justifiable motives.
    Need more lists about nefarious ne'er do wells? Check out our other videos of the Top 10 Classic Villain Archetypes:, Top 10 Epic Broadway Villain Songs:, and Top 10 Epic Movie Villain Songs:
    #10. Syndrome
    #9. Vulture
    #8. Cypher
    #7. Raoul Silva
    #6. Roy Batty
    #5. Old Joe
    #4. Andrew Detmer
    #3, #2, #1???
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Comments • 4 711

  •  Year ago +174

    Check out WatchMojo UK for the best content made for the Brits by the Brits:

    • Sub Zero
      Sub Zero 7 months ago

      These were not villains. Most of them just wanted revenge and rightfully so. They re antagonists at most since the protagonists are the ones who wronged them in some way.

    • Sithenus Frierson
      Sithenus Frierson 8 months ago

      Conveniently leaving out Killmonger ay WatchMojo if he's not on this list why even make a top 10 sympathetic villains list

    • T Short Bull
      T Short Bull 9 months ago +1

      Syndrome? For real?

    • Daniel Silva
      Daniel Silva 9 months ago

      Were is brolly from dragon ball movies?

    • Iam Keshan
      Iam Keshan 9 months ago


  • Dillon Hoffman
    Dillon Hoffman Day ago

    Pretty good list Mojo

  • Unusual scales on guitar

    Black manta.

  • jdave pnnu
    jdave pnnu Day ago

    How the hell are you going to miss Law Abiding Citizen and put the incredible up there instead?

  • Scottish Clout
    Scottish Clout Day ago

    Number 1 should be thanos

  • Prof Nazrul Islam
    Prof Nazrul Islam 2 days ago

    Doctor Hanibal Lectar : Apetite for Human
    Doctor Frankenstein : Corpses surgically put together
    Doctor Strangelove : Cause of Human Destruction
    Doctor Zivago: Fell in Love in a Cold Climate.
    Dr Dolittle: Spoke to Animals. "LIED TO MY CHILDHOOD" and I still believe he spoke and sang to Animals.

  • ProfessorxVile
    ProfessorxVile 3 days ago

    Ed Harris' villain General Hummel from The Rock would have been a good choice.

  • Fiqran Snapdragon
    Fiqran Snapdragon 3 days ago +1

    Where is Electro?Tailung from kungfu panda?mandarin in iron man 3?

  • Dr. Animatronic
    Dr. Animatronic 4 days ago

    Other Father
    He justs wants to be free from bedlam

  • Deolito Bicua Jr.
    Deolito Bicua Jr. 5 days ago

    Immaturity and selfish intents are not excuses to justify villainy

  • mattg177
    mattg177 5 days ago

    There is no justification for the atrocities Silva commited.

  • Nhlakanipho Evacuee Zitha


  • Ipoteka-san
    Ipoteka-san 5 days ago +1

    "Koba" is Josef Stalin's revolutionary time nickname.

  • Gene Johnson
    Gene Johnson 5 days ago +3

    Karate Kid, I was Sympathetic to Johnny. Daniel wasn't minding his business.

  • Gene Johnson
    Gene Johnson 5 days ago +1

    This must be before kilmonger; Kilmonger was the most sympathetic villain

  • Milo Zwane
    Milo Zwane 6 days ago

    Kill Monger trumps Magneto

  • Giant Devil26
    Giant Devil26 6 days ago +1

    Frank Hummel from the movie "The Rock"

  • Illusive Man
    Illusive Man 8 days ago +6

    ACKTCHUALY THANOS had Justifiable Motives..

  • Uwaila Enabulele
    Uwaila Enabulele 9 days ago

    Please Law Abiding Citizen!!!
    They killed his wife and daughter!!!!!!!!

  • Master Driver Rex
    Master Driver Rex 9 days ago

    Hopefully, you guys will make an updated list with Thanos on it.

  • zeoking silver
    zeoking silver 10 days ago

    no mr freeze

  • fashizzle78
    fashizzle78 11 days ago


  • fashizzle78
    fashizzle78 11 days ago


  • fashizzle78
    fashizzle78 11 days ago

    Thanos ..he didn't want the universe to suffer the same fate of his home planet ..

  • Sam Kresil
    Sam Kresil 12 days ago

    General Zod - Man of Steel.

  • TheQPB
    TheQPB 12 days ago

    Gerard Butler law abiding citizen should be on there definitely

  • Adam Robinette
    Adam Robinette 17 days ago +1

    General Francis Hummel in The Rock is another good one.

  • Benny Saunders
    Benny Saunders 17 days ago

    Vulture was an awesome villain, I can relate lol

  • Clemens Kindermann
    Clemens Kindermann 18 days ago

    "Magneedo" XD

  • Charmaine Balzan
    Charmaine Balzan 19 days ago

    Apex predator there he is evil unreal unreason

  • PainfulToWatch
    PainfulToWatch 21 day ago

    What about the lady in sudden impact. She at least deserved an honorable mention.

  • Starla Hoehne
    Starla Hoehne 23 days ago

    Why no honorable mentions?
    Thanos: He really believes killing half the population is what has to happen for all species to survive. It isn't about killing or ruling, but keeping population down so life goes on.
    Unbreakables's Elijah Price: All his life he has suffered broken bone after broken bone. He is just searching for a reason for his existence.

  • Splitting Productions
    Splitting Productions 25 days ago +2

    After watching Snowpiercer a second time I came here thinking I'd see Wilford on the list.
    Guess not....

  • SprinkleBomb
    SprinkleBomb 25 days ago

    Am I the only one thinking thanos at least made a little bit of sense

  • sirkka heinonen
    sirkka heinonen 25 days ago +1

    What about Jigsaw? He only punished people, who had been doing terrible things. That´s more than justifiable.

  • tyup 6747
    tyup 6747 27 days ago

    What about Pennywise? He needs to eat children in order to survive, and he “cooks” them by scaring them, which saltens the meat. How is he any different from a hunter looking for a meal in the woods?

  • Sana Jjang
    Sana Jjang 27 days ago +1

    Ozymandias of the watchmen should be in the list

  • dbsummit
    dbsummit 28 days ago

    *A jew*

  • Outlaw By Nature
    Outlaw By Nature 28 days ago +2

    With everything that was done to Magua, I CERTAINLY AGREE WITH HIS ACTIONS!!! BLOOD BEGETS BLOOD AFTERALL!!!
    Also : KILLMONGER was RIGHT!!!

  • Emilio Manuel De Pedro

    An underrated villain that could be here is Claudio Perrini (Cliff Curtis), from Collateral Damage, one of Arnold Schwarzenegger's most underrated films. He is the Colombian terrorist who kills Arnie's character's family. Eventually, it turns out that he became a terrorist cause he lost his daughter during a CIA attack against the guerrillas. I know that actually doesn't justify his crimes, but it humanizes him. And shows that he is like Arnie's character: 2 men consumed by loss, hate and revenge.

  • Mme Malaussène
    Mme Malaussène Month ago

    Ozymandias, and Agent Smith.

  • Vivek Shrivastav
    Vivek Shrivastav Month ago +1

    Baron Zemo!

  • Jane Lily Rainbow
    Jane Lily Rainbow Month ago

    And Ledger

  • anitë
    anitë Month ago

    The villain from Kingsman 1. He was right, either humanity gets killed and the world gets saved or the earth gets destroyed by the climate crisis. Humanity dies either way, so why not rather kill them *before* the earth gets destroyed, too?

  • Jehovanys Milian
    Jehovanys Milian Month ago

    Where is sandman ? he just tried to save his daughter life. Also Spider-Man forgave him for killing his uncle it wasn’t intentional

  • Yuvraj Sandhu
    Yuvraj Sandhu Month ago +1

    Thanos has justifiable motive by wiping out half the universe it’s simple calculus really, the avengers only cared because they lost their friends, but the truth is thanos was right.

  • Yuvraj Sandhu
    Yuvraj Sandhu Month ago +1

    Where’s thanos

  • Howe Sandgat
    Howe Sandgat Month ago

    Where is Harvey Dent!

  • Karen Daniel
    Karen Daniel Month ago

    Professor X is the true villain. So ate the humans in Planet of the Apes. Any film with natives getting revenge on the British means the British are the bad guys, just like in real life.

  • Thomas Schultz
    Thomas Schultz Month ago

    A lot of people consider Travis Bickle from Taxi Driver a villain so ill plead his case:
    He just wanted to provide a better life for Iris and he killed those who exploited her

  • matt baker
    matt baker Month ago +1

    Killian from iron man 3

  • Brian Kim
    Brian Kim Month ago

    Killmonger, thanos

  • Stephy The Bride
    Stephy The Bride Month ago

    Gotta think about Magneto!He's like Thor:can't get a rest from losing loved ones.During the Holocaust,he loses his mother,and as an adult,loses both his human wife and half mutant daughter.Thor also loses everyone:his mother,his girlfriend,his father,and brother Loki.Can't you evil villains give them both a rest?They have nothing to lose,and still you insist on taking everything away from them?

  • Lilly Patty
    Lilly Patty Month ago

    What about JD

  • Jay Cartwright
    Jay Cartwright Month ago

    Erik Kilmonger

  • Lloyd Kudzai Muchenje
    Lloyd Kudzai Muchenje Month ago +2

    Thought you’d include thanos

  • Jessica Williams
    Jessica Williams Month ago

    I don’t know about justifiable as in sympathetic but I thought Kingsman villain Valentine’s motive to lower the population to save the planet was genius

  • Tadiwanashe Matara
    Tadiwanashe Matara Month ago


  • Dr. Animatronic
    Dr. Animatronic Month ago +1

    Koba should not be on here
    He killed his own kind

  • Sophie Henderson
    Sophie Henderson Month ago

    Before I click this video, I’m expecting John Doe from Se7en.

  • Parker
    Parker Month ago +1

    Nah nah nah fuck cypher!!!!

  • Miriam Webb
    Miriam Webb Month ago

    What about the 2 villains in the eastrail 177 trilogy?

  • Miriam Webb
    Miriam Webb Month ago

    What about Megamind

  • Izaac Wopz
    Izaac Wopz Month ago +7

    I was expecting the "before we reveal our number 1 pick, here are some honorable mentions.. "

  • Ted Bates
    Ted Bates Month ago

    DOWN Syndrome?

  • Nathan Gerke
    Nathan Gerke Month ago

    I am disappointed no Maleficent, got played by a fuck boy hungry for power. Took her wings and demonized her when she had done nothing wrong but be her.

  • gяєg
    gяєg 2 months ago +2

    #1: Thanos

  • LeVar Moore
    LeVar Moore 2 months ago +1

    New #1 kilmonger

  • Paulart Calle
    Paulart Calle 2 months ago

    Davey Jones? He waited 10 years to fuck and the bitch just left! :(

  • RandomAtics
    RandomAtics 2 months ago

    I wouldn't put Syndrome on this list, I get that he's trying to make everyone a superhero, but he's mostly motivated by Mr. Incredible being a little rude just one time. Well, I guess worse things could happen, Bowler Hat Guy guy could've been out on this list

  • Anna J.
    Anna J. 2 months ago +2

    Killmonger should’ve been first.

  • Yootoobnoob
    Yootoobnoob 2 months ago

    that guy from Falling Down

  • Scott Hewitt
    Scott Hewitt 2 months ago +1

    Cypher killed his friends so he could eat a steak. Nice choice.

  • 8nonamefitsme8 181
    8nonamefitsme8 181 2 months ago

    it’s funny because magneto was based off Mac max , Even with the white Jewish holocaust origin story. Professor Xavier was also based off Martin Luther King Jr.

  • Durrpadil
    Durrpadil 2 months ago

    I think Count Dooku should be on there. It would seem he fully well intended to overthrow Sidious if given the opportunity.

  • Markus Winford
    Markus Winford 2 months ago

    Charles Bronson in Death wish.

  • Daniel Fraga
    Daniel Fraga 2 months ago

    You showed the "Ignorance is Bliss" line WITHOUT the harp, SHAAAME! :P

  • Brown Sugar
    Brown Sugar 2 months ago +1

    Sandman from Spider-Man 3

  • Kamden Collins
    Kamden Collins 2 months ago

    What about Dr. Doom? He has literally gone into countless futures and even spoken with a god of time, and the only perceivable future where humanity doesn't completely annihilate or torture itself is the one where he rules earth.

  • Re X
    Re X 2 months ago +3

    Thanos he tried to stop world hunger

  • Imran Athallah
    Imran Athallah 2 months ago

    Maguanard James Keenan

  • BlueAmber
    BlueAmber 2 months ago +1


  • Mason morgan
    Mason morgan 2 months ago +1

    Thanos did nothing wrong

  • joe smith
    joe smith 2 months ago

    Magneto should definitely be #1

  • bloody back stabbers
    bloody back stabbers 2 months ago


  • sheepysaccount
    sheepysaccount 2 months ago +2

    Where the HELL is Khan from Star Trek into Darkness? Being suspended in cryo-freeze and then used as a guinea pig to engineer weapons while your family is threatened had me rooting for the guy.

  • XP_ Streaks_
    XP_ Streaks_ 2 months ago

    Where Thanos at tho

  • Cooper Hoff
    Cooper Hoff 2 months ago

    What about thanos???

  • My dick is small, but
    My dick is small, but 2 months ago

    Megamind better be here

  • Jonas Nekongo
    Jonas Nekongo 2 months ago

    #the whole sucide squad

  • Mitchell Posner
    Mitchell Posner 2 months ago +1

    I thought that Archibald Snatcher from boxtrolls would be on the list

  • Westies are besties
    Westies are besties 2 months ago

    Gollum/Smeagol. If you were living as a small, ugly creature, forced to live in the dark and eat raw fish, and goblins, whilst only caring for one object that has been taken from you, but now is in your reach, but you can't get to it because of your fear that something will happen to you or it. Yeah, I would be a little angry too.

  • Mr. Ekshun
    Mr. Ekshun 2 months ago

    Obvious Canadian accent is obvious

  • Alexander Edinger
    Alexander Edinger 2 months ago

    Haytham Kenway

  • khlo money
    khlo money 2 months ago


  • Dylan Nicholson
    Dylan Nicholson 2 months ago

    where is thanos

  • Josh Woodyard
    Josh Woodyard 2 months ago

    Where is bane

  • Rip T
    Rip T 2 months ago

    Is Thanos on this list?

  • Grizzzly Bear
    Grizzzly Bear 2 months ago +1

    Where’s thanos?

  • MMS yeah
    MMS yeah 2 months ago

    Wut what about sandman from spiderman 3