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02 August 2011

12 Great Musical Film Characters

Just before I put up the final review of my musical marathon here is a nice little list. Since I never can put these lists in order here is a non-orderdered version of great musical film characters.

Roxie Hart 
Film: Chicago (2002) 
Actress: Renee Zellweger
In ‘Chicago’ Roxie is a sweet and innocent character at first and you may even take a little bit of pity on her. However, later in the film she becomes scheming, selfish and a little bit in her own world too much. It is what makes her such a great character. The dark humour in her song ‘Roxie’ is brilliant, with one of her lines being ‘Who said murders not an art?’ Renee Zellweger was stunning as Roxy and definitely put on a good show. Roxie is a deviously great character from an excellent musical.

Sweeney Todd 
Film: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007) 
Actor: Johnny Depp
Todd is simply psychotically brilliant. His character as a whole is just a complete nutcase and Johnny Depp really puts the strength into the character. In the film he wants revenge and as he cuts the throats of innocent victims he sings at one point in one of the film’s satirical humour moments. Todd is great character because of how psychotically sinister he is.

Esther Blodgett/Vickie Lester
Film: A star is born (1954)
Actress: Judy Garland
The reason I put her so far up on the list is because of Judy Garland’s remarkable performance. She was truly gleaming with emotion in the character whose career we see going from nothing to something. Her character was sweet and charming and you could really respond to what she is going through in the story.

Jack Skellington
Film: The Nightmare before Christmas (1993)
Voice Actors: Chris Sarandon, Danny Elfman (singing voice)
Jack is a simple and sweet animated character. He is just a character who has tired of the same old routine and wants something different. In the film he goes after that and is unknowing of the chaos, he is creating. Tim Burton’s character of the Pumpkin King is a fine innocent character.

The Master of Ceremonies
Film: Cabaret (1972)
Actor: Joel Grey 
The Emcee barely has to do anything to get this far up the list because seeing Joel Grey under than make-up and costume and giving a very convincing German accent is strikingly resonant. Let alone the songs sung by him are marvellous and have a unique sty about them. Grey’s performance was solid and this Emcee is one heck of an entertainer.

Frank N Furter
Film: The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
Actor: Tim Curry
I could not resist from putting Rocky Horror’s wild, eccentric transvestite. His character is hilarious and Tim Curry did a remarkable job wearing those high-heels, corset, make-up and even the stockings. It was daring, funny and in his musical number ‘Sweet Transvestite’ I found myself singing along.

Joe Gideon
Film: All That Jazz (1979)
Actor: Roy Schieder 
This is the viciously honest portrayal of painstakingly hard working director/choreographer Bob Fosse. His character is a work (and sex) aholic whose life is very dysfunctional. We see him talking with an angel of death about his life and we even see marvellous musical numbers on the great stage of life.

Film: West Side Story (1961)
Actress: Natalie Wood
Maria is a wonderfully bright character that you can fall in love with even 15 minutes into the film. She is kind, honest (something she claims to be one of her biggest faults as she thinks she can be too outspoken) and sweet. It is good to see her relation between the Trapp family children and is a delightfully warm character.

Audrey II
Film: Little Shop of Horrors (1986)
Voice Actor: Levi Stubbs
Your probably wondering how a singing plant got on to this list. He is a singing flesh eating plant who is the mastermind of the film. He is funny and his songs were brilliant. There is not much to say about this big piece of greenery.

Film: The Sound of Music (1965)
Actress: Julie Andrews
Yes to a surprise two characters of the same name are on this list. Although her character is not much more than Juliet from Shakespeare’s story is, this version is a little different. Maria is a Porto Rican girl whose only desire is simply to love someone, and that is regardless of race, colour and religion, the way love should be. She deserved in this list because of her great personality and the wonderful songs she sings.

Lina Lamont
Film: Singin’ In the Rain (1952)
Actress: Jean Hagen 
She is definitely a character you love to hate. She is the complete persona of a spoiled, egotistical and brainless movie star. Jean Hagen was golden being her and the Brooklyn-esque high-pitched voice she puts on made things all the funnier.

Dorothy Gale
Film: The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Actress: Judy Garland 
After seeing, more of her films Garland have become my favourite actress and here she is wonderful as ever. Dorothy is an innocent and kind Kansas girl who ends up on a remarkable journey and as old as the story has become, it remains resonant, classic and wholesome.


  1. I love all of these characters! The ones I know are thrilling, chilling, sweet and sour! An excellent array of characters! And the ones I don't know have that perfect description to make them all the more appealing!

  2. Great post. And thanks for reminding me to watch more musicals. I have yet to see Chicago, Sweeney Todd, A Star is Born, etc... But I agree with what I've seen. I would personally add Gene Kelly from An American in Paris and Audrey Hepburn from My Fair Lady, though.

  3. @ Nick
    Thanks for reading and musicals are quite an experience. I don't see what man people's problems are with them. They can be sweet, thrilling, sensational, fun, charming, alarming and several other words. I have not seen those 2 films you mentioned but I will be soon. Thanks again.

  4. Great post Thomas,

    I've seen quite a few of these, and enjoyed them, especially The Rocky Horror Picture Show; I also liked Little Shop of Horrors and loved the Nightmare before Christmas.

    I agree with your choices, very well done!

  5. Superb blog T:) ~These characters are great~!!

  6. I must see the musicals I have yet to see and revisit the ones I already love!

    A random top 5 almost based on the above would be Sweeney Todd, Dorothy Gale, Maria (Julie Andrews), Jack Skellington, and Oliver (Mark Lester).

    Awesome marathon, blog and choices :D

  7. Roxie Hart but no Velma Kelly... shame on you! No seriously, a wonderful list of great characters.

  8. My favorite would be Sweeney Todd - absolutely awesome.

  9. Excellent list of characters. I would personally put Velma Kelly on here as well, but I have no complaints otherwise (sparing for a few in films I haven't seen yet). I especially agree with Lina Lamont (one of the best screen villains ever IMO) and Audrey II (ditto).

  10. Yeah Audrey II may be a plant, but he's a fairly bad ass villain. And yes I think Kelly could be here over Roxie haha. Thanks for reading.



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