Sometimes the bad guy isn't that bad, he or she is just misunderstood. These are the villains who didn't deserve to lose; the bad guys who, for one reason or another, actually deserved to triumph over the good guys. Some are misunderstood and others are just too cool to fail.
Maleficent (Sleeping Beauty)
Some people may take issue with Maleficent declaring war on a family because they didn't invite her to a party, but we sympathize! If you invite the entire neighborhood, you always invite the weird people down the street. That's common courtesy. Maleficent is just fighting the good fight against rudeness.
Roy Batty (Blade Runner)
He may be the leader of a band of murderous androids, but if your father had forced you into a life of servitude that would end against your will after only a few years, you'd be pissed too!
Edward Rooney (Ferris Bueller's Day Off)
Ferris Bueller may be a cool guy, but he's a cool guy who's breaking the rules. Can you blame Principal Rooney for attempting to capture him in the act of truancy? He may be obsessive, but he's just doing his job.
Barbossa and His Crew (Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl)
We're not saying the undead crew of The Black Pearl are secretly good guys, but if the heroes had just stayed out of their way, they would have returned the evil gold, lifted the curse and willingly became completely mortal bad guys instead of invincible bad guys. That's a win-win!
Francisco Scaramanga (The Man With the Golden Gun)
The entire idea behind Francisco Scaramanga is that he's the villainous equivalent of his adversary, the super spy James Bond. But Christopher Lee takes it a little too far: he's actually cooler than Agent 007!
Syndrome (The Incredibles)
You can't forgive Syndrome for getting rid of dozens of retired superheroes, but his intentions are shockingly noble. All he wants to do is empower the average person and erase the line separating superhero from normal schlub. We think we speak for all normal schlubs when we wonder why the guy promising us rocket boots didn’t win?
Mr. Freeze (Batman & Robin)
Mr. Freeze doesn't terrorize Gotham City for the sake of profit or pleasure. All he wants to do is save his dying wife, who he's kept alive in stasis. If Batman gave him access to the advanced tech in the Batcave, Freeze could save his wife on his own time and the city would be safe!
Frankenstein's Monster (Frankenstein)
The stitched-together creation of Dr. Frankenstein isn't an actual monster -- he's a baby in a powerful body. He doesn't deserve to get chased by angry villagers; he deserves a warm bed, a glass of milk and a bedtime story. With the right encouragement and a new wardrobe, he could have been Superman.
Brigadier General Frank Hummel (The Rock)
All Frank Hummel wants is for the United States government to cough up $100 million in dirty money to pay the families of dead soldiers who perished during black ops missions. Sure, he takes 81 hostages and threatens countless lives in the process, but talk about having your heart in the right place.
Prince Nuada (Hellboy II: The Golden Army)
It's hard to blame Prince Nuada for attempting to wipe out all of humanity with an army of magical automatons. After all, it's a last resort from a guy who only wants to save his dying species.
King Kong (King Kong)
We always remember King Kong escaping from captivity and wreaking havoc, but we don't always remember him being forcibly taken from his home. Don’t blame the ape -- he just wants to sleep back in his own bed like the rest of us.
Gollum (The Lord of the Rings Trilogy)
Gollum isn't a villain -- he's an addict. He's addicted to the One Ring. The Return of the King concludes with him falling into a volcano when it should have ended with him at Magic Rings Anonymous, sharing his story over a cup of coffee and a stale pastry. Heck, Frodo could have been his sponsor.
Vizzini (The Princess Bride)
We're not going to attempt to defend Vizzini's behavior. He's a kidnapper, a braggart and a snob. However, he's a ludicrously entertaining kidnapper, braggart and snob!
Doctor Octopus (Spider-Man 2)
As we see in the first and third acts of the film, Otto Octavius is a good guy corrupted by his own tech. If he actually managed to finish his experiment, he could have solved the world’s energy crisis.
Neil McCauley (Heat)
Every character in Heat occupies a shade of gray.. So forgive us for rooting for the loyal, professional thief over the wrecking ball of a human being that is the cop pursuing him.