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11 Great Scenery Chewers for the (Ice) Ages

By Agent Bedhead | Seriously Random Lists | July 11, 2012 | Comments ()


It can often be a struggle to come up with ideas for a weekly column pegged to the upcoming week's new releases. This week, Ice Age: Continental Drift brings back Scrat, that damn little acorn-chasing squirrel-rat of the series, who is perhaps the only character who makes Ray Romano and Queen Latifah as mammoths worth enduring. So in tribute to Scrat, I decided to put together a list of fellow scenery chewers for the (ice) ages. It goes without saying that, generally speaking, supporting actors in a given scene deserve much credit for emphasizing the impact of a scenery-chewing actor.

One more thing -- this was a very difficult list to narrow down to just 11 entries. So there's a good chance I left off your favorite. Sorry about that (and sorry, Val Kilmer). Not really. Just yell at me in the comments.

Al Pacino in The Devil's Advocate: Naturally, Pacino earns honorable mentions for Scent of a Woman, Scarface, Heat, and many more.

Faye Dunaway in Mommie Dearest: Those damn wire hangers were the source of many a nightmare.

Christopher Walken in At Close Range : He's actually chewing gum in this scene, which is worth at least a few extra bonus points, right?

John Leguizamo in Romeo + Juliet: He's perhaps the smoothest curtain chomper on this list.

Samuel L. Jackson in Pulp Fiction: Also includes nearly everything in this guy's career except for an atypically low-key performance in 1408.

Gary Oldman in The Fifth Element: "I don't like warriors. Too narrow-minded, no subtlety." Love it.

Jack Nicholson in The Shining: As a matter of necessity, I forsake the "Heere's Johnny!" moment for the bar scene because he's just so damn good here.

Nicholas Cage in Vampire's Kiss: See also every other Nicholas Cage movie.

Daniel Day Lewis in There Will Be Blood: He drinks it up!

Glenn Close in Dangerous Liasons: She throws herself on the ground and smashes the vanity just like a toddler! That's what one gets for attempting to outwit the Malkovich.

Elizabeth Taylor in X, Y and Zee: This is, perhaps, the only Liz Taylor incarnation that Lindsay Lohan has any business in portraying.

And a special bonus number for you...

Willem Defoe in The Boondock Saints: "There was a firefight!"


Agent Bedhead lives in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She and her little black heart can be found at Celebitchy.

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Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • Mrs. Julien

    Katharine Hepburn in The Lion in Winter and i mean that in the very best possible way. "I could peel you like a pear and God Himself would call it justice!"

  • John W

    Peter Finch in Network.
    Gary Oldman in The Professional
    Tom Cruise in Tropic Thunder
    Robert Duvall in The Great Santini and The Apostle
    Heath Ledger in The Dark Knight

  • John W

    I'll never understand how Travolta won an Oscar for Pulp Fiction over Jackson.

  • Uriah_Creep

    He didn't. They were both nominated, but the movie only won for Best Screenplay. Barbarino is Oscar-less.

  • John W

    You mean I've been carrying this grudge against the academy all this time........

  • Uriah_Creep

    It's OK, grudges against the Academy are practically a requirement for anyone who loves film.

  • Erin S

    I'd add Alec Baldwin in "Glengarry Glen Ross" and Richard Burton in... well, everything, but especially "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" Liz was pretty outstanding in that one too.

  • John W

    Alec Baldwin was awesome in Glengarry Glen Ross.

  • sherlockzz

    Tim Curry. Chews the scenery so well you swear he's going to eat right through the screen.

  • mats19

    Gary Oldman in Fifth Element is such a force to be reckoned with everything about him in that movie is pure GOLD! While I admit to LOVING every godforsaken moment of Boondock Saint's that movie is entirely all about William Defoe's balls to walls, nuts on the ceiling campyness.

  • Lemon_Poundcake

    Gary Oldman is spectacular in "The Professional" too. Mr. Poundcake and I are fond of yelling "Bring me everyone!" for any occasion that requires forceful yelling.

  • PDamian

    Alan Rickman in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves!


    Guy of Gisbourne: "Why a spoon, cousin? Why not an axe?"
    Sheriff of Nottingham: "Because it's dull, you twit. It'll hurt more."

  • dewdney

    There are not enough upvotes! A million times yes!

  • Bedewcrock

    please please anyone have small gif of X, Y, and Zee's "Oh, what a bitch" line???

  • chicky07

    I couldn't finish watching that wire hanger scene from Mommy Dearest. Gut wrenching.

  • laylaness

    Willem Dafoe is amazing in The Boondock Saints.

  • Bert_McGurt

    "I came here to kick ass and chew bubblegum, and it looks like I'm all out of...oh, nope, still got a couple pieces of bubblegum here. Carry on."

  • Miley's Virus

    Nothing from "A Few Good Men"? Then only subtle performances in the whole thing were delivered by actors named Kevin (Pollak and Bacon).

  • BWeaves

    Christopher Walken looks just like Jon Voight in Deliverance, there.
    Then he speaks and it's obvious that he does not have a purty mouth.

  • Mitchell Hundred

    Jackson's preformance in 'The Red Violin' was also pretty low-key.

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