Best. Movie. Facial Hair. Ever.

Beards. Mustaches. Sideburns. These are the components of true facial hair. It saddens me that moderate to heavy stubble seems to be the fad these days. Forgetting to shave is not an art; growing the finest and healthiest set of whiskers takes years of trying and God given talent. In honor of a look that never goes out of style, I give you the best movie facial hair in no particular order.

No wonder he didn’t show his face for 8 years. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures.

No wonder he didn’t show his face for 8 years. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures.

First off, Not Bruce Wayne! (Christian Bale) – The Dark Knight Rises

Ewww. This is an example of how not to grow righteous facial hair. It’s like roadkill glued to his chin…just wrong.

Now, down to business:

Oh, look, his eyeliner matches his beard. Photo courtesy of Lionsgate.

Oh, look, his eyeliner matches his beard. Photo courtesy of Lionsgate.

Seneca Crane (Wes Bentley) – The Hunger Games

The most recent example on my list is also the most flowery. It proves that facial hair can be art and doesn’t always have to be an overt expression manliness. Extra props to Bentley for it being real (note the stubble around the edges). I wonder how long it took the makeup department to get those curls right.

My beard is worth that much in rubies! Photo courtesy of Allied Artists Pictures Corporation.

My beard is worth that much in rubies! Photo courtesy of Allied Artists Pictures Corporation.

Daniel Dravot (Sean Connery) – The Man Who Would Be King

I don’t know why these are called mutton chops. They should be called: Connery chops. I have seen the movie, and I think that he manages to be a god to a small tribe, using his facial hair to convince them of his superiority. Or something like that.

America. Photo courtesy of Gramercy Pictures.

America. Photo courtesy of Gramercy Pictures.

The Stranger (Sam Elliot) – The Big Lebowski

How does he eat? HOW? Seriously, his upper lip baggage must weigh upwards of ten pounds. No doubt his drawl is just a speech impediment from carrying that much man hair.

Too bad I can’t Obliviate this movie from memory. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures.

Too bad I can’t Obliviate this movie from memory. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures.

Dr. Arliss Loveless (Kenneth Branagh) – Wild Wild West

Shakespearean Thesp tried his hand at big budget movies and ended up as the villain in Wild Wild West – a notorious flop. What didn’t flop, however, was his intricate beard, clearly inspiration for Seneca Crane in future years. If only Will Smith wrote a rap about his hair too.

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Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

Dennis (Alec Baldwin)  – The Spongebob Squarepants Movie

Even animated characters (and fish for that matter) recognize the importance of looking good in the face department. Badass bounty hunter Dennis grows a vein-popping ‘stache on the spot just to prove he has had his daily dose of testosterone.

The trick is lots of carrot juice and immortality. Photo courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox.

The trick is lots of carrot juice and immortality. Photo courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox.

Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) – X-Men

The definitive word on sideburns. They match his denim/plaid/leather jacket thing to make for one sexy woodcutter mutant superhero. They look so thick and healthy he probably resorts to his adamantium razors for a trim.

He doesn’t look like a bitch. Photo courtesy of Miramax Films.

He doesn’t look like a bitch. Photo courtesy of Miramax Films.

Jules Winnfield (Samuel L. Jackson) – Pulp Fiction

The Jheri Curl gets most of the buzz for follicle greatness, but his trifecta of sideburns, handlebar  ‘stache, and soul patch are a great fusion of 70’s and 90’s that only Samuel L. could pull off. 

These? They're because I'm Jewish. Photo courtesy of NBC.

These? They’re because I’m Jewish. Photo courtesy of NBC.

 Alex “Starburns” Osbourne (Dino Stamatopoulos) – Community

Innovation is the name of the game when it comes to face-fur. This drug-dealing character is nick-named after the fun star-shaped sideburns which I suppose also look like the leaves of the devil’s lettuce that he smokes. Put on that Foghat vinyl and dig his gnarly ‘burns.

I feel like I can rip this off his face and use it as a comb. Photo courtesy of NBC.

I feel like I can rip this off his face and use it as a comb. Photo courtesy of NBC.

Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) – Parks and Recreation

When Nick Offerman became a carpenter, I imagine that as part of his license exam he had to show off a mustache. Naturally, he passed with flying colors. It’s as solidly built as any of his hand-made woodcrafts. (Yes, I Parks and Rec [and Community] is a show, not a movie, who cares).

There’s a bullet stuck in my beard. Again. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

There’s a bullet stuck in my beard. Again. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures.

R.J. Macready (Kurt Russell) – The Thing

Rugged. Coarse. Warm. Russell’s hearty beard combines with his flowing locks to create a literal mane that shields his head from the arctic winds like a Siberian tiger. I imagine this was how the vikings did it to brave Nordic winters.

And though you fight to stay alive, your body starts to shiver, for no mere mortal can resist the evil of...the Moustache! Photo courtesy of Allied Artists Pictures Corporation.

And though you fight to stay alive, your body starts to shiver, for no mere mortal can resist the evil of…the Moustache! Photo courtesy of Allied Artists Pictures Corporation.

Frederick Loren (Vincent Price) – House on Haunted Hill

I thought about putting down Clark Gable as an example of a pencil thin mustache, but what he has in sexiness, Price beats in oozing creepiness. Brilliant and terrifying.

I bet he saves a lot of money on trimmers. Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

I bet he saves a lot of money on trimmers. Photo courtesy of Paramount Pictures.

Rufus T. Firefly (Groucho Marx) – Duck Soup

It’s fake — painted on in fact — but that doesn’t make it any less iconic. I guess the message here is, if you can’t grow one, make one?

Yes, ma’am, this is all natural. Photo courtesy of Miramax Films.

Yes, ma’am, this is all natural. Photo courtesy of Miramax Films.

Pai Mei (Chia Hu Liu) – Kill Bill Volume 2

This facial hair kicks ass. It’s as wispy and flowing as a Rapunzel’s, yet deadly like a crouching tiger or something. Props to the eyebrows for asserting that they too can count as cool facial hair.

“Why didn’t someone tell me my ass was so big?” They were too busy checking out the ‘stache. Photo courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

“Why didn’t someone tell me my ass was so big?” They were too busy checking out the ‘stache. Photo courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

President Skroob (Mel Brooks) – Space Balls

Just plain weird looking. I feel like Mel Brook passed out at party and woke up with these curly nose tendrils. A great sight gag if there ever was one.

Grizzly bears are envious of me. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures.

Grizzly bears are envious of me. Photo courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures.

Alan – (Zach Galifianakis) – The Hangover

Taking a page from the Robin Williams handbook, Alan proves that in the case of hair, more often is more! Without his beard he’d just be a chubby guy with problems, but instead he’s a cuddly chubby guy with a dense, miraculous beard.

Maybe if I grow this beard, no one will recognize me as Chet Haze’s father. Photo courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox.

Maybe if I grow this beard, no one will recognize me as Chet Haze’s father. Photo courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox.

Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks) – Cast Away

So yeah, getting stranded on a tiny island is bad. Bad for your health, you skin, your teeth, your…hair. Perhaps not. It’s long and wispy like a hobo but the sunny highlights give it that extra kick to make it stylish.

Savvy? Photo courtesy of Buena Vista Pictures.

Savvy? Photo courtesy of Buena Vista Pictures.

Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp)  – Pirates of the Caribbean

He’s shown us weird before with the likes of Ed Wood and Edward Scissorhands, but it wasn’t until 2003 that Johnny Depp showed his true potential: chin braids. Yep, the mustache is fine and but its the chin action complete with tiny beaded braids that make the man.

Little Tramp, little moustache. Photo courtesy of United Artists.

Little Tramp, little moustache. Photo courtesy of United Artists.

Adenoid Hynkel (Charlie Chaplin) – The Great Dictator

The actor Charlie Chaplin trademarked that little mustache long before a certain Adolf Hitler came along and then used the resemblance in an uproarious send up. Unfortunately, the laughs could not stop World War II.

There is no chin behind his beard, just another fist! Photo courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

There is no chin behind his beard, just another fist! Photo courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

Chuck Norris – Everything!

His persona alone inspires an entire subgenre of humor, about 40% of which is devoted to his beard. Golden, powerful, thick and luxurious, one has to assume  that he conditions regularly. Thank you Chuck Norris. You make beards worth having.

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