John Finnegan Played by: Treat Williams
Film(s): Deep Rising (1998)
Treat Williams is, well, a treat as a spot-on parody of big-haired, lunkheaded, wisecracking action heroes in Stephen Sommers' Aliens-meets-Poseidon Adventure mash-up. Equally handy with a one-liner and a shotgun (while riding a jetski), Finnegan is a merc who reacts to danger - any sort of danger, be it men with guns or an enormous multi-tentacled octo-bastard - with a roll of the eyes and the catchphrase, "Now what?" Enormous fun, that's what.
Robert Played by: Credited as "Goodyear"
Film(s): Rubber (2010)
It's hard not to overstate the case here: Robert may well be the weirdest bad guy in the history of horror movies. For the antagonist of Quentin Dupieux's singular slasher movie is a tyre. A psychic tyre, that is, just trundling around a small town, spying on nude women like a big old perv, and blowing up the heads of anyone who gets in its - sorry, his - way. Goodyear? As Frank Drebin might say, no, the worst.
Grant Mazzy Played by: Stephen McHattie
Film(s): Pontypool (2008)
Excellent character actor Stephen McHattie got his moment in the leading man sun in Bruce McDonald's brilliant spin on the zombie movie, playing a fast-talking devil-may-care radio announcer whose way with words just may be the key to stopping a virus that has infected the English language.
Tarman Played by: Allan Trautman
Film(s): The Return of the Living Dead (1985)
The first zombie to be unleashed by the toxic gas in Dan O'Bannon's brilliant cake-and-eat-it flick, Tarman doesn't mind that his skin has been melted off. All he wants to do is eat "brains" and "live brains" and "more brains". He's a one-track lover, but hey, at least he knows what he wants. And he's memorably played by Trautman, who went on to work with The Muppets. Naturally.
Angela Played by: Felissa Rose
Film(s): Sleepaway Camp (1983)
This was another attempt to come up with a female Jason or Michael (it actually ran to a series of confused sequels, two of which starred Bruce Springsteen's younger sister, Pamela, fact fans). At least, on the surface. For Angela, the tortured and bullied outsider who hacks and slashes and bee-stings her way through an entire camp of counsellors and kids in Robert Hiltzik's movie is actually a boy: something revealed in startling detail at the film's end when Angela (actually Peter, who was forced to live as a girl after his sister, Angela, was killed in a boating accident) stands before the two remaining survivors, hissing and scowling with a bloodied butcher knife in one hand, a severed head at his feet, and his Johnson hanging there, for all the world to see. Go on, double bill it with The Crying Game and read The Wasp Factory for good measure.
Philip Played by: Bill Nighy
Film(s): Shaun Of The Dead (2004)
Bill Nighy confirms his national treasure status with this brilliantly stilted, clipped, repressed and thoroughly British performance as Shaun's stepdad, a man so middle-class that he'd rather run a zombie bite under a cold tap than call the doctor. His speech at the end, as he finally reveals his true feelings to Shaun, is intensely moving, while his final act as a zombie - turning off loud music with a contented sigh - is hilarious. Somebody knight this man!
Elvis Played by: Willem Dafoe
Film(s): Daybreakers (2009)
When Elvis - a former vampire-turned-human freedom fighter - enters the building, the Spierig Brothers' vampire flick receives a vital injection of fresh, sarcastic, wisecracking blood. Willem Dafoe proves he's as handy with a crossbow as he is a wry one-liner.
Norman Spencer Played by: Harrison Ford
Film(s): What Lies Beneath (2000)
It's not often that Harrison Ford's Finger Of Doom points right back at himself, but that's what happens in Robert Zemeckis' wintry chiller (written by Agent Coulson himself, Clark Gregg). As the duplicitous and, ultimately, murderous, husband of Michelle Pfeiffer, Ford is nicely nasty in all the right places. This guy wouldn't just shoot Greedo first, he'd drown him as well.
411 Cheryl Played by: Ellen Sandweiss
Film(s): The Evil Dead (1981)
The sister of Ashley Williams is, her brother aside, the only character from the original The Evil Dead that could even be said to be a character. Sandweiss' Cheryl - paranoid, brittle - is the audience's eyes from the off. She's the only one who's aware that the cabin in the woods is, perhaps, not the best place to be, and that's even before she's roughly violated by a tree. So it's a shock when Sam Raimi has her become the first to go, transformed into a white-faced Deadite who spends the rest of the movie gleefully cackling from her new home under the floorboards.
Brian Flagg Played by: Kevin Dillon
Film(s): The Blob (1988) (1988)
Years before he was Johnny Drama, Kevin Dillon was Johnny Horror in Chuck Russell's Frank Darabont-penned remake. As the leather-jacketed wild child biker boy who ends up being mankind's best hope in the battle to say jello goodbye, Dillon's James Dean/young Brando impression is all kinds of fun.
409 Stuntman Mike Played by: Kurt Russell
Film(s): Death Proof (2007)
Mickey Rourke's loss was Kurt Russell's gain. When Rourke bowed out of Death Proof, for reasons unknown, Russell stepped in to play the bleached-blond maniac who has turned his car into the ultimate stalk'n'slash weapon. Russell is fantastic as Stuntman Mike, all old-school charm in the first half before becoming a childlike coward in the second half as the tables are turned. By far the most memorable character in QT's least memorable film.
Mark Played by: Sam Neill
Film(s): Possession (1981)
Isabelle Adjani rightly gets all the plaudits for her performance in Andrzej Zulawski's little-seen oddity, but Sam Neill - mad-eyed and twitchy as the jilted, jealous husband who begins to suspect that his wife may be less than faithful - is equally astonishing with a bravura, risky turn. Witness his meltdown in the restaurant, where he ends up at the bottom of a scrum of chefs. That's commitment.
Anna Franklyn Played by: Jacqueline Pearce
Film(s): The Reptile (1966)
The make-up on Jacqueline Pearce, as the venomous daughter of Noel Willman's mad doctor, might not be great, but when she's revealed in all her glory it provides one of the best jump scares in Hammer's whole output.
Jerry Blake Played by: Terry O'Quinn
Film(s): The Stepfather (1987)
Terry O'Quinn? Terror O'Quinn, more like! (We're so sorry) Years before he was Locke on Lost, O'Quinn made quite the impression as the psycho hosebeast who, disguised as the perfect husband and father, moves from family to family, taking the whole 'to death us do part' thing way too seriously.
Mr. Dark Played by: Jonathan Pryce
Film(s): Something Wicked This Way Comes (1983)
There can be no doubt, from the first few seconds of Jonathan Pryce's appearance as Mr. Dark, the Illustrated Man who runs the world's creepiest travelling funfair, that here is the something wicked that has this way come. Pryce is magnetic as the demonic Dark, teasing and tempting children and, in one phenomenal scene, taunting the aged Jason Robards with reminders of what it is to be young again.
Paul Sheldon Played by: James Caan
Film(s): Misery (1990)
Kathy Bates won the Oscar. But every good striker needs a midfielder to do the heavy lifting and provide the assist, and so think of James Caan's noble, dignified Paul Sheldon as the Philippe Coutinho to the Daniel Sturridge of her Annie Wilkes. And with two broken ankles into the bargain. Impressive.
Grace Stewart Played by: Nicole Kidman
Film(s): The Others (2001)
Nicole Kidman's excellent as the jumpy, overprotective mum trying to protect her children from things that go bump in the night. When people talk about the twist in Alejandro Amenabar's excellent spookfest, they usually mean the one that's reminiscent of The Sixth Sense. But, really, the most chilling one is the revelation that Grace... well, let's just say she won't be winning any Mum Of The Year awards anytime soon.
402 Librarian Played by: Alice Drummond
Film(s): Ghostbusters (1984)
It's often easy to forget how much horror there is in Ivan Reitman's comedy-horror. The arms ripping through Sigourney Weaver's armchair, the zombie taxi driver, the demon dogs... if seen at an impressionable age, these images stay with you. But it's the Library Ghost that makes the biggest impression, changing from gentle comedy - ssshing the nascent Ghostbusters - to heart-thumping nightmare - rushing at them with a hideously transformed face - in the blink of an eye. Who we gonna call? A shrink.
The Baby Played by: n/a
Film(s): It's Alive (1974)
Larry Cohen's monstrous satire on the dangerous of Big Pharmacy's obsession with unrestricted chemical testing has at its centre one of cinema's most memorable killer kids: a deformed monstrosity that, much like Frankenstein's Monster, wants to be left alone, but strikes out with lethal force (and fangs, and claws) when it feels threatened. The tagline alone is a work of genius: "There's only one thing wrong with the Davis baby: it's alive..."