Actors Who Are Infamous For Playing Insane, Unhinged Roles

Most of the time we go watch a movie for either it’s a part of some great franchise or features our favorite actor. The characters being as crazy as the actors they are portrayed by is rather cherry on top. Sharing the same level of crazy spices it all up. Actors like Heath Ledger playing Joker ends up with a huge round of applause.

However, there are many more to the list of unhinged roles played by the fan favorites with the same level of insanity. Refer to this list to go like “Sure, yeah! That was one perfect example of insanity.”

Lindsay Lohan: Aubrey Fleming (I Know Who Killed Me)

Lindsay Lohan as Aubrey Flemming - Actors Who Are Infamous For Playing Insane, Unhinged Roles
Lindsay Lohan as Aubrey Flemming

By the time I Know Who Killed Me was released in 2007, actress Lindsay Lohan had lost her status as America’s sweetheart. In this supernatural thriller, she played a young stripper from the wrong side of town, which was a great part for her. Lohan’s character is the definition of damaged, being pursued by an unknown assailant and avoiding police and other aid to pursue a succession of evenings filled with unending drugs and sex. Those who remember Lindsay Lohan’s party days from 2006 to 2011 will easily see connections between Lohan and the emotionally devastated protagonist of this film.

Mel Gibson: Hamlet (Hamlet)

Mel Gibson as Hamlet - Actors Who Are Infamous For Playing Insane, Unhinged Roles
Mel Gibson as Hamlet

The concept of insanity is one of the most prominent aspects of this 1990s Hamlet film adaptation. We can see how insanity manifested itself in the characters’ daily lives, particularly Hamlet’s. Many critics believe that many of Gibson’s eccentricities are designed as a defense mechanism from the media. In this fashion, he dons a “cloak of insanity” akin to Hamlet’s to confront his foes.

Matthew McConaughey: Finn Finnegan (Fool’s Gold)

Matthew McConaughey as Finn Finnegan - Actors Who Are Infamous For Playing Insane, Unhinged Roles
Matthew McConaughey as Finn Finnegan

A neighbor complained about a loud, raucous party going on at McConaughey’s house a few years back, and the cops were summoned. Instead, officers discovered McConaughey alone, shirtless, and playing his bongos when they arrived. The type of individual who would commit such a thing has the same personality as McConaughey’s character in Fool’s Gold. Matthew McConaughey’s demeanor, as well as his role in the 2008 film Fool’s Gold, might be better described as “wild” rather than “unhinged.”


Jack Nicholson: Jack Torrance (The Shining)

Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance - Actors Who Are Infamous For Playing Insane, Unhinged Roles
Jack Nicholson as Jack Torrance

Torrance is a disgraced college professor with a terrible alcohol addiction who attempts to regain his life as the keeper of an old resort on a mountain. Torrance becomes a mallet-yielding lunatic after being possessed by a host of evil spirits. Nicholson’s temper concerns are well-documented, so much so that he acted in the feature film Anger Management, which parodied some of his previous outbursts. Perhaps it was because of his personal experiences that he was able to play the outraged Jack Torrance so well.

Heath Ledger: Joker (The Dark Knight)

Heath Ledger as Joker - Actors Who Are Infamous For Playing Insane, Unhinged Roles
Heath Ledger as Joker

Ledger was so dedicated to his role as the Joker in The Dark Knight (2008) that he only slept two hours each night after isolating himself in a hotel room for a month to write a diary of his wicked character’s musings. We all know about the tragedy that befell Ledger while he was filming, and rumors soon surfaced about how unhinged he had become. In a picture with so much going on, the focus is continuously drawn back to the Joker, and so many of his scenes here were just hypnotic. This is an example of an actor being too attached to the character he portrays, resulting in unimaginable tragedy.

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