50 Greatest Movie Drunks

Nicolas Cage in Leaving Las Vegas (1995)

The Drunk: The fumes literally come off the screen as Ben Sanderson goes on a mission to drink himself to death, as love interest Elisabeth Shue watches on. Nicolas Cage is so convincing we always get a hangover the day after watching the movie.

Tipple Of Choice: Whiskey, though any alcohol will do, really.

Robert Shaw in Jaws (1975)

The Drunk: Shark hunter Quint is a pirate of the modern day variety, drinking more than a fish as he searches the seas for the monsters of the deep.

Tipple Of Choice: Ask the shark, he’ll know.

Everybody in Dazed And Confused (1993)

The Drunks: The 1976 graduating class of Texas’ Lee High School. Doing it the proper way, this lot get themselves a keg, and then head to the moon tower to enjoy it. Shame the police turn up.

Tipple Of Choice: Beer, dudes.

Charlie Chaplin in City Lights (1931)

The Drunk: The kind of drunk who creates chaos wherever he goes. Known only as A Tramp, this fellow is picked up periodically by a millionaire who gets him well and truly trollied.

Tipple Of Choice:
He doesn’t really have a choice to be honest.

Albert Finney in Under The Volcano (1984)

The Drunk: Miserable old Geoffrey Firmin. His finest line? “Hell is my natural habitat.” He’s drinking in an attempt to drown his inner despair.

Tipple Of Choice: Is this whiskey or brandy he’s holding aloft? Either way, strong stuff.

Dudley Moore in Arthur (1981)

The Drunk: Playboy Arthur Bach, who lives a life of utter frivolity, partying it up with the best of them – which, naturally, includes downing a few bottles of the good stuff.

Tipple Of Choice: The finest champagne that money can buy.

Elizabeth Taylor in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)

The Drunk: Mean old Martha’s got a mouth on her, and she’s not afraid to use it. Whether that’s putting down her husband, or getting busy with a house guest...

Tipple Of Choice: Not rubbing alcohol, though if she’s desperate enough…

Jimmy Stewart in Harvey (1950)

The Drunk: Drink-loving Elwood P. Dowd has a best friend that he likes to go to the pub with. That best friends just so happens to be a 6’ 3” pooka named Harvey. Don’t judge him for it.

Tipple Of Choice: Beer. Shots. Whatever the bartender gives him.

Martha MacIsaac in Superbad (2007)

The Drunk: High schooler Becca gets so drunk that she winds up in bed with skinny dweeb Evan. At least he’s going to get an amazing “blow-jay” out of it…

Tipple Of Choice: Goldschlager.

Robert Hays in Airplane! (1980)

The Drunk: Don’t call him Shirley. Taxi driver Ted Striker loves him a drink – though he seems to have a bit of trouble getting them into his gob.

Tipple Of Choice: Whatever he can find on a plane.

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.