The 10 Best Portrayals of Satan in Movies

It’s a character we can all identify with.   Though none of us will fully grasp or see the actual Devil we can all empathize with evil.  We can all related to a dark side out there.  And movies know this all too well.

Their portrayal of the devil has come in many forms but at least they all share the same quality:  that he/she is up to no good.  And however the film depicts this character will interpret how we as watchers will react.

Here are the 10 best portrayals of Satan in movies….

Elizabeth Hurley -Bedazzled

I talked about this last month.  Anyone who argues this as not being the number one is simply wasting their time.

Al Pacino – The Devil’s Advocate

I think the yelling alone constitutes a spot on this list.  This may very well be his number one yelling movie.  It’s either that or Scent of a Woman.  Pretty close regardless.

Trey Parker – South Park

Do we even need to have a discussion about this?  I didn’t think so. 

Tim Curry – Legend

Tom Cruise as a young man!  Mia Sara!  Come on folks.  Anyone who doesn’t remember Legend is just sucky.  What an awesome flick that has similarities to Labyrinth and Neverending Story.   And Tim Curry had the perfect voice.  Not to mention the actual costume here.  Pretty scary if you ask me.

Robert De Niro – Angelheart

Where some people are extremely over the top, De Niro is subtle-smooth in his portrayal of Louis Cypher (get it), the New Orleans bigwig who tempts Mickey Rourke in the wickedest way.

Vincent Price – The Story of Mankind

I will admit it.  I’ve never seen this movie.  But it’s Vincent Price.  Come on.  How can he not be amazing?

Viggo Mortensen – The Prophecy

You could see how cool he was as a bad guy in The Perfect Murder so you know Viggo’s got a dark side.  He took it to the limit in  The Prophecy.  Job well done.

Peter Stormare – Constantine

Come on.  It’s Stormare.  Guy is awesome in everything he’s in.

Gabriel Byrne – End of Days

By far the coolest part is when you first see him as the devil and he kisses that chick in the restaurant, feels her breasts, walks out, and the restaurant blows up.  Pretty awesome.

Bruce Payne – Switch

Whatever happened to this guy?  I used to like him a lot.  He had a very sinister way about him.  Unfortunately it was really only this movie and Passenger 57 where he was kind of badass.

  • ben

    you forgotten Ray Wise from Reaper

  • Bandit

    I loved Stormare and Viggo the best out of that group. Just sinister!!!

    Please do “best angels” in movies next! Sir!!!!

  • Great list! But how could you forget Dave Grohl in Tenacious D?

  • LawlessVictory

    Stormare was indeed awesome in Constantine. The high point of the flick, in my opinion.

  • Greg

    Dave Grohl in “Pick of Destiny”

  • Josh

    No love for Harvey Keitel in Little Nicky?

    • Nattyb

      That movie was so bad it didn’t even occur to me.

  • fluffy

    You should have had Peter Cook from the original Bedazzled.

  • You fuckers forgot Al Pacino in Devil’s Advocate.

  • Damnit. disregard that last post… Elizabeth Hurleys boobs distracted me from number two on the list .

  • Bob

    While I don’t disagree with most of your choices, your arguements and reasoning are kind of weak. You might as well have just said, “You know, because…coooooome oooooon.” for all of them.

  • The choice of Liz Hurley over Peter Cook for “Bedazzled” Devil makes sense to me. I watched the original Bedazzled recently and was struck by, not only how over-stretched the jokes were, but also the horrendous misogyny.

    (At one point the love interest is being leched over by a police officer who is telling her that many rape victims are asking for it. Far from expecting the audience to be horrified by this, it seems to be considered a source of humour. Meanwhile Dudley Moore’s character, far from seeing concerned about the love interest’s safety, seems more worried about whether the police officer will get off with her before he can.)

    Liz Hurley actually has much better comic timing that Peter Cook in this particular role. Bizarre perhaps, but true.

    Also Bruce Payne actually does get to play a badass in another movie. A horribly bad movie, but playing a badass nonetheless. In “The Howling VI: The Freaks” he plays a powerful vampire.

    On Gabriel Byrne in “End Of Days” the thing that really annoyed me was that after that initial scene he’s never anything like that badass again for the entire movie.

  • Schnitzel_bob

    What about Tom Waits in The Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus? It’s the role he was born to play!

  • Devin
  • starr

    rodney dangerfield, little nicky. well, he played the devil’s father, who was the devil at one point in time.

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  • Viggo, Stormare and Pachino are my three favorite devils, however, two of them also have the distinction to have been outsmarted by Keaneu Reeves…

  • UBU

    Tom Waits in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus is pretty good.

  • Tom

    What about Jim Keats from Ashes to Ashes?

  • Tim Curry in legend best makeup ever


    What about Max Von Sydow in “Needful Things” ?

  • Laird Cregar in the original ‘Heaven Can Wait’ is a weirdly courtly Satan.

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  • Nick

    You forgot Danny Elfman. And Tom Waits.

  • emoangel159

    wouldn’t the person who was Damien Thorn in The Omen count aswell?

  • dallythewop

    seriously, tom waits in Imaginarium of Dr Parnassus should have been on this list

  • my eyes are the best. ()_()

  • Meta Zone

    Nothing comes close to the way Satan is portrayed in The Passion of the Christ — brilliant, creepy, snake-like, mocking of the holy family – even someone like me who doesn’t believe in a devil felt the chills. Mel Gibson’s directorial work (as well as the actress who androgynously plays satan) is exceptional.

  • keynedundada

    The best Devil was the actor who bent down and shat out priests in Pasolini’s The Canterbury Tales