50 Hammiest Movie Performances

Brian Cox in Troy (2004)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Agamemnon has had his family honour slighted, with his brother's wife stolen away from him by weedy Orlando Bloom. This explains why Brian Cox plays him as very, very ANGRY!

Why We Love It: Check out Cox’s war-cry on YouTube. Worth including him on the strength of that alone…

Al Pacino in Scent Of A Woman (1992)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: The birth of Al’s “hoo-ah” school of ranting, which would bear fruit in the form of Oscar recognition. Go big or go home.

Why We Love It: “I’m just getting warmed up!” And indeed he is…

Dustin Hoffman in Hook (1991)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Robin Williams doesn’t usually play the straight man, but with Hoffman on such panto-esque form, he’s got little option here!

Why We Love It:
Barely recognisable under a ton of eyeshadow and a superbly villainous moustache, he’s a study in boo-hiss brilliance!

Stanley Tucci in The Core (2003)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Tucci embraces the sheer silliness of this sci-fi romp, and starts barking his dialogue in fine blockbuster style. You can see the twinkle in his eye throughout…

Why We Love It: It’s so clearly tongue in cheek. As co-star Aaron Eckhart explains, “he was laughing so hard that he almost literally went to the bathroom in his space suit.”

Robert De Niro in The Adventures Of Rocky And Bullwinkle (2000)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: A thoroughly bizarre performance as the film’s big bad, in which De Niro twitches, gurns and shouts his way through proceedings.

Why We Love It: It’s a bit like the car crash you can’t take your eyes off, particularly when he starts to parody his Travis Bickle routine.

Jeremy Irons in The Man In The Iron Mask (1998)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Fighting off strong competition from Gerard Depardieu and John Malkovich, Irons takes the prize for the most scenery devoured. Sterling work.

Why We Love It:
His one-liner delivery is impeccable throughout. “It’s judgement day!”

Richard Roxburgh in Van Helsing (2004)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: It’s Dracula, but not as you know him, as this incarnation of the Count has come over very camp indeed…

Why We Love It:
Among all the half-baked monsters, Roxburgh’s screamingly OTT performance is the real special effect to be savoured…

Paul Giamatti in Shoot Em Up (2007)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Paul Giamatti can be a wonderfully low-key actor, given the right material. Given the script from Shoot ‘Em Up , he goes wild.

Why We Love It:
He’s the perfect counterpoint to Clive Owen’s patented brand of dour heroism.

Ben Affleck in Gigli (2003)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Ben Affleck as a mobster in Gigli … it’s almost impossible to believe this is the same guy who’s now the toast of Tinseltown.

Why We Love It:
Affleck seems to be trying not to laugh throughout, even when he’s meant to be intimidating. “Nice computer,” he smirks, tearing some chump’s laptop in two. “Here’s suckmydick.com.” Gold.

Al Pacino in Gigli (2003)

The Scenery-Chewing Performance: Sticking with Gigli , Al Pacino also drops in with a scene-stealing performance as a laconic crime boss, inexplicably elongating his dialogue to unintentionally humorous effect.

Why We Love It: Pacino loves to crank it up, but this is something else again. His delivery really is remarkable!