20 Worst Movie Leaders

Top Gun (1986)

The Leader: Maverick, cocky flyboy who enjoys flouting both rules and safety.

Why So Bad? His complete inability to adhere to rules is rooted in daddy issues (papa was a better pilot than me!), meaning he's a wreckless presence with little regard for his fellow pilots. Also, he’s just really short and annoying.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: He’d meet Sarah Newton in a bar, not realise she’s a politician, chat her up, then be severely embarrassed the next day at an important conference.

Conan The Barbarian (1982)

The Leader: Big brute with massive muscles and an even massiver sword. Generally talks in mono syllables and leads quests.

Why So Bad? Well, y’see, he’s all kind of, y’know, it’s just... He’s thick, alright? More brawn than brains and all that. Yeah, he saves a few princesses, but he loses them, too.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: He’s already the Governor of California - this is scarily possible.

Inception (2010)

The Leader: Dream-obsessed Dom Cobb is in the business of infiltrating peoples’ unconscious minds and extracting information for money.

Why So Bad? Because he’s so haunted by the death of his wife that he’s a liability to have on a mission – especially a mission involving dream infiltration, which is where the phantom of his ex-beau can come to life.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: He’d be unable to distinguish reality from dream, and put through the Tuesday Tie Bill, which says everybody has to wear a silly tie on a Tuesday on penalty of death.

Species (1995)

The Leader: Xavier Fitch, a government worker in allegiance with SETI who are seeking signs of alien life.

Why So Bad? Having a) created an abomination of human/alien DNA, he then b) cries about having to destroy her, before c) letting her escape, and then d) hiring an absolutely ridiculous team of psychics, assassins and scientists to track her down. His e) death can’t come soon enough.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: He’d spike the water cooler with an unstable genetic protein and take notes as his co-workers morphed into weird alien things. Then cry about it.

300 (2007)

The Leader: King Leonidas, ruler of Sparta and owner of impressive facial hair.

Why So Bad? Despite having battle advice handed to him on a golden plate, Leonidas ignores the revelation of a secret path that could undo his war formation - and scupper his attack on the Persians. For a war lord, war really isn’t his forte.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: Turning a blind eye would be his first reaction to every dodgy situation. The resultant catastrophe could rock the Earth off its axis.

Office Space (1999)

The Leader: Bill Lumbergh, Vice President of Initech, and general pain in the ass.

Why So Bad? He runs his team with military precision, demanding that everything is completed perfectly, and often dragging staff in on weekends for no reason. Also, he has a vanity plate. Worst. Boss. Ever.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: “If you could just go ahead and work another eight day week that would be great, m’kay?” is the new most commonly used phrase around the office.

Love, Actually (2003)

The Leader: The US President, a thinly-veiled caricature of George W. Bush, who is hoping to form an alliance with nitwit Hugh Grant's British Prime Minister.

Why So Bad? He’s a sleazy womaniser who doesn’t mind feeling up the PM’s secretary. Also, he keeps secrets regarding future policies that could prove disastrous.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: He’d make all women in the office come to work in bikinis. Doesn’t sound too bad, actually…

Terminator 2 (1991)

The Leader: Sarah Connor, mother of the future saviour of mankind. She's been targeted by futuristic Terminators who want to make sure their dystopia is never overthrown.

Why So Bad? She’s been banged up in the loony bin for a time, and deemed unfit to look after son John. When she’s broken out of the asylum, Connor has turned into an obsessed military-style warrior who will do whatever it takes to preserve the future – including killing innocent people.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: Anybody gets in her way? Say hello to my trusty machine gun...

This Is England (2006)

The Leader: Andrew ‘Combo’ Gascoigne, fresh out of jail and a skinhead overlord.

Why So Bad? He’s an English nationalist and all-out racist who doesn’t mind getting his fists bruised and blood on his face if it’s in the name of England. In the end, he joins the National Front and beats black friend Milky to a pulp.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: He’d get high, then ponder why he was a part of the coalition government considering he’s a Nationalist.

Deep Impact (1998)

The Leader: Tom Beck, the US President (yes, Hollywood got there first Mr Obama).

Why So Bad? Even though he knows a massive meteor is on a crash collision course for Earth, Beck keeps the information from the public. Then he refuses to set up safehouses, instead building a mountain-side bunker for the world’s leading figures (sportsmen, professors), leaving everybody else to face their Gods.

If They Were In Charge Of The Coalition Government: We’d all be dead by now.

Josh Winning has worn a lot of hats over the years. Contributing Editor at Total Film, writer for SFX, and senior film writer at the Radio Times. Josh has also penned a novel about mysteries and monsters, is the co-host of a movie podcast, and has a library of pretty phenomenal stories from visiting some of the biggest TV and film sets in the world. He would also like you to know that he "lives for cat videos..." Don't we all, Josh. Don't we all.