TOP 20 BADA$$ FEMALE CHARACTERS IN FILM

Every month we will create a list of our top 20 picks of something related to films.

So where to start? What is important in cinema for us?

Well, we love fighters, people that don’t quit no matter the odds, underdogs, people that break the molds and expectations.

For me (João) the most influential people I know are women, my girls are my inspiration so why not talk about the bada$$ Women in cinema.

We are all talking about women equality, we might not realize, but many of this characters helped to change how society sees women.
They are part of pop culture and many of the men today grew up seeing them on the screen, this admiration made many believe that a woman can do anything a man can.

So what are our picks?

Did we leave anyone out? I am sure we did, and that is a great thing, knowing there is so many out there for us to pick.

Before we go into our top20, here are some honorable mentions;
The girls from “Charlies Angels”, Trinity from “The Matrix”, Gamora and Nebula from “Guardians of the Galaxy”, Black Widow in the “MCU”, Lucy in “Lucy”, Nikita in “La Femme Nikita”, Jordan in “G.I. Jane” and Moana in “Moana”.

Many of this movies Jasmine didn’t see because they are still a bit grown up for her and she doesn’t like scary stuff,😂 but she trusts my word in some of them.

But let’s start;

Number 20
Milla Jovovich as Alice in “Resident Evil” franchise (2002 to 2016);

I have to come clean straight away and say I am a huge Milla Jovovich fan, it all started with “Return to the blue Lagon” and it all becomes official in the “Fifth Element”.

I was also a big “Resident Evil” fan of the games, these games were scarier than anything out there in any media, so when it came to cinema in 2002, I was excited but also with high expectations.

The first one was ok, but then it just becomes more and more silly.

Still, the character of Alice was still the best thing of it and become more and more bada#! making this a franchise that worldwide did more than 1 billion dollars.

One word to define her: Unstoppable

 


 

Number 19
Kate Beckinsale as Selene in “Underworld” franchise (2003 to 2016);

Kate Beckinsale made this character; it was really generic if you would read it on paper, a girl version of “Blade” you could say.

She made it cool, in a world of monsters, you could still believe they would fear her.

Just like Resident evil with time it becomes a bit silly, but her character was still cool as the blood on her veins.

One word to define her: Cool

 


 

Number 18
Angelina Jolie as Evelyn Salt in “Salt” (2010);

Angelina Jolie brought to life so many cool and iconic roles, we all know she can be fierce and deadly but in “Salt”, she showed us another level.

The action is impressive, but it’s in how she controls everyone around her that she shows she is up there with the best spies in cinema, James Bond and Jason Bourne could learn a lot with this character.

Red Sparrow” this year tried to take her spot in the spy world but felt a bit short. (Read our review)
There are some talks about her returning to the role, and we would be happy with that,

One word to define her: Manipulative

 


 

Number 17
Rhona Mitra as Eden Sinclair in “Doomsday” (2008);

Ok, this is probably one of the more unknown movies on this list, it only did around 22 million worldwide and didn’t have the attention most of the ones on this list had.

That said Rhona Mitra completely rocks in this movie, she is smart, fearless and doesn’t take s**t from no one.

A mix of “Escape from New York” and “Mad Max” is how I would describe this movie, and the talented Neil Marshall did a fantastic job directing this movie.

The way Neil Marshall mixed action, horror and the post-apocalyptic escape movie is genius, and he did it by creating another kickass female character, something we already knew he could after “The Descent”.

We can’t wait for his version of “Hellboy” in 2019.

One word to define her: Ruthless

WARNING ADULT CONTENT

 


 

Number 16
Charlize Theron as Lorraine Broughton in “Atomic Blond” (2017);

David Leitch was an uncredited director in the movie “John Wick” one of the best action revenge movies we had in maybe forever, and this year we will see his “Deadpool 2” so what could he do to up is game?

He could create one of the best raw kick-ass action heroes ever, and on top of that, make it a woman.

In this movie, Charlize Theron brings to live an atomic bomb of a character.

She can play anyone better than any men or women, she is sexy, and she uses her sexuality as a weapon.

The action is the best you will see and when it starts your forget the beauty of the actress, and you just fell impress on what she can do.

One word to define her: Tough

 


 

Number 15
Zoe Saldana as Cataleya in “Colombiana” (2011);

Zoe Saldana is terrific in this movie; you feel how she is torn between revenge and just wanting to be a regular girl.

She captivates us the audience, and the opening sequence is essential for that.
In the opening sequence, we see how she already has in her nature the ability to reach that animal side, the violent side that she will use to become the assassin she needs to be.

The action is cool, but the biggest asset of this character is how smart she is and how she grows up being always several moves in front of her adversaries.

One word to define her: Untraceable

 


 

Number 14
Saoirse Ronan as Hanna in “Hanna” (2011);

Saoirse Ronan is a fantastic actress, most of her parts are of troubled young girls so this was a great fit.

When we get to see her go full feral is astounding, that was something we don’t usually see on such a young character, and she is so believable.

The action was great, but her performance in the most intimal parts of the movie is what made the difference.

One word to define her: Feral

 


 

Number 13
Angelina Jolie & Alicia Vikander as Lara Croft in “Tomb Raider” (2001 to 2018);

Since the early computer game that tomb raider has been a symbol of women that can kick ass and stand up to any challenge a guy can, she is smarter, tougher and more fearless then anyone she goes up against.

In the movies, we had to different takes on it, with Angelina Jolie we got the sexy bombshell that is overconfident, and nothing makes her flinch.

With Alicia Vikander we got the young Lara, still flawed with ghosts that she faces and has to learn how to grow in the action character we all love.

I am more turned to the second version; Jasmine likes the first, check our “Tomb Raider” review.

One word to define her: Smart

 


 

Number 12
Chloë Grace Moretz as Hit-Girl in “kick-ass” (2010);

Until this movie, I don’t believe a kid was ever shown like this, especially a female kid.

Chloë Grace Moretz is perfect in this part and can variate from a young innocent kid that just wants ice cream, to a violent superhero that will kill anyone in front of her.

“Kick-ass” is so much fun, and Chloë steals the limelight in every opportunity she gets by being funny and a dominant force on screen.

One word to define her: Violent

WARNING ADULT CONTENT

 


 

Number 11
Emily Blunt as Rita in “Edge of Tomorrow” (2014);

Edge of tomorrow is one of the most underrated movies ever when it came out, there was too much confusion about the title, and I think people didn’t get it.

Tom Cruise is excellent on it; he is one of our biggest action movies stars ever, so it’s even more impressive that Emily Blunt makes him look like a rookie.

She shows amazing adaptability to any challenge and is ruthless and very believable as the leader of this revolution, and even with all this high tech gear and science fiction ambient, she shows her humanity.

One word to define her: Adaptable

 


 

Number 10
Charlize Theron as Imperator Furiosa in “Mad Max: Fury Road” (2015);

How do we know we created a great character?

Well, there are many things but when we have a movie called “mad max” about such an iconic character and all we talk is about Furiosa that is a big red flag.

I was one of the many that didn’t care about Max I wanted to know about this fearless warrior that faces it all to save a bunch of friends.

These is the second entry in this list for Charlize Theron, and it should be at no surprise because she can turn into any character, how Charlize turned into Furiosa reminds me of her transformation in “Monster”, her beauty is only surpassed by her talent.

Check our “Mad Max: Fury Road” review here.

One word to define her: Fearless

 


 

Number 9
Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn in “Suicide Squad” (2016);

Batman is one of the greatest characters not only in comic books but also movies, but many times he just gets outshined by his villains.

Jack Nicholson, Heath LedgerDanny DeVito and the beautiful Michelle Pfeiffer did terrific jobs bringing that danger and evil, but no one represented the madness and loony side to the big screen like Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn.

She was fun, captivating and you ended up understanding her and even have some empathy with her character, and then she would remind you why she was a villain, that was what made her different and so interesting

One word to define her: Mad

 


 

Number 8
Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwomen in “Batman Returns” (1992);

I am one of the biggest “Batman returns” fans, love the look Tim Burton gave to this film, and I believe that given a chance this Batman would have gone to fascinating places.

Just like the first Batman, Tim Burton was more interested about the villains, they had the more exciting stories, the Joker and the Penguin both got brilliant portraited on the screen, but there was one that just blew everything out of the water.

Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwomen was and still is one of the best portraits of a comic book villain ever to be on screen, she was broken, an innocent driven into the darkness, she was in an interior struggle that made her motivations so more interesting.

And then we have her sexuality, at no point, she was confined to the good girl persona that society gave her, she was in control she was using every weapon she had and was having fun.

One word to define her: Sexy

 


 

Number 7
Uma Thurman as The Bride in “Kill Bill” (2003 to 2004);

Quentin Tarantino changed cinema, that is an evident fact, if we look at the energy he brought in with is dialogs we can see how he did that with movies like “Pulp Fiction” and “Reservoir Dogs”, but he wanted more.

“Kill Bill” was a new playground for him, a type of movie that maybe no one in Hollywood had ever done it like this, but even that wasn’t enough, we went a step further and made the main character a woman.

What a perfect move that was, and casting Uma Thurman was the final piece of the puzzle, she fitted perfectly in it.

The fight choreography is still some of the best in any movie, and the mix with strong characters and dialogues made the bride a legend in cinema.

One word to define her: Skilled

WARNING ADULT CONTENT

 


 

Number 6
Mulan in “Mulan” (1998);

The only animated character to make it in the top 20, and why is she?

Mulan like many strong characters is thrown into a situation that forces her to rise to the challenge, she doesn’t want to be a hero, but she has to become one anyway.

Unlike many of the other characters here she is not ready to destroy everything in front of her with physical strength, no she uses her brain, she finds ways to turn her weakness into strengths and that together with her determination and motivations is what makes her be our number 6.

One word to define her: Determination

 


 

Number 5
Linda Hamilton as Sarah Connor in “Terminator 2” (1984 to 1991);

When the first “Terminator” came out we had a character called Sarah Connor that was only important in this movie because she was going to have a kid that would save the world, she was scared and weak and was in many ways just another girl to be in danger and be saved by the hero.

Then we have a sequel, maybe one of the best ever made, and why is it so good? Because when we get to see Sarah again, she as changed, she forged herself into a hero, trained and made sure she is prepared for what was coming.

The way Linda Hamilton portraits Sarah is right on the nose, she makes us believe that you can go through and horrible situation and come out on the other side stronger.

One word to define her: Changed

 


 

Number 4
Gal Gadot as Diana in “Wonder Woman” (2016 to 2017);

Wonder woman was a huge hit, it surprised everyone and become the cornerstone of the Dc universe making all the big guys like Batman, Superman, and even the Justice league have to try and catch up.

But why? What was the secret?

First Gal Gadot, she was born to play this part, you believe she is wonder woman on and off screen, the background story, what makes Diana a wonder woman.

In many of the other movies, the story is secondary to the action, in this movie the director Patty Jenkins, knew that story is much more important.

Wonder woman represents the ideals every woman stands for, honesty, friendship, and strength not requiring a man by her side.

One word to define her: innocence

 


 

Number 3
The Women in “Black Panther” (2018);

Our number 3 is a bit different, for many movies having a strong women character is a huge step, but this year’s juggernaut “Black Panther” had so many that we could not pick just one.

They had a technological genius like Shuri, warriors that would stand by their country no matter what like Okoye, mothers like Ramonda that would do anything for their son and women that even would sacrifice her love for the greater good like Nakia.

This characters made this movie what he is, made this movie feel different and even outshined the Marvel formula to become a cultural phenomenon. (Read our review)

One word to define her: believes

 


 

Number 2
Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia in “Star Wars” (1977 to 2018);

What other character stood the test of time like Leia, she was revolutionary when in 1977 she showed that a princess could stand her ground and face one of the biggest villains in cinema history.

In time she explored all of the assets she had to help the rebels, she was sexy, warrior, smart, a sister and a mother but more than anything she became a leader.

A leader that everyone looked up and that was able to make the other characters better human beings.

One word to define her: leader

 


 

Number 1
Sigourney Weaver as Ripley in “Alien” (1979 to 1997);

And then we get to our number 1, the woman that faced monsters that others cried at their mere sight.

She was always a strong character since the first alien, but as she gets on with the first movie we see her evolve, we see her having to get better and not having a choice because she needs to survive.

Her first movie ends with her already as a bada$$, but what makes her number one is that she didn’t stop getting better and better.

In “aliens” she makes a group of marines look like wusses and saves the day by fighting an alien queen with a piece of warehouse equipment.

She is the hero inside of every woman, the hero that will face anything, adapt to every situation and make sure she will survive

One word to define her: leader

 


 

So there you have it, our top 20 most bada$$ Female characters in film.

What is another list you would like us to do?

Tell us in the comments below or our social media channels.

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João Jesus Written by:

"You got a dream... You gotta protect it. People can't do something themselves; they wanna tell you-you can't do it. If you want something, go get it. Period." Movies inspired me to be who I am today.

9 Comments

  1. Jon
    April 1, 2018
    Reply

    Great Choice(s)
    and I really enjoyed reading your descriptions!
    Just as I love your blog that I only detected today!
    Thanks a lot for sharing this beautiful work!

     
    • April 2, 2018
      Reply

      Thank you Jon, hope you keep an eye on what we share here 🙂

       
  2. […] But like many times in many movies, it was Charlize Theron that stole the show, as Imperator Furiosa she created one of the best female kick-ass action actresses, check our kick-ass female actress top 20 list. […]

     
  3. April 10, 2018
    Reply

    […] This characters in our opinion are so strong that deserve a place in cinema history and are part of our list of top 20 Bada$$ female characters in film, check our list here. […]

     

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