Where’s He Supposed to Be From? The 5 Worst Accents in Film

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Sometimes even our greatest actors can struggle with accents, and the proof is all over filmland. Without even mentioning broadly comic portrayals of foreigners seen in the films of yesteryear (Dick Van Dyke in “œMary Poppins,”Mickey Rooney in “œBreakfast at Tiffany’s”), many a serious and fairly modern production has been set off by the inept regional enunciations of some of our biggest and most respected names. Lets take a look at a few standouts.

5 Al Pacino as Tony Montana in “œScarface”(1983)

Let’s just admit it: Al Pacino’s bravura, endlessly quotable performance as a degenerate Cuban drug kingpin cutting a bloody path through 1980s Miami is adorned in one of the hammiest, most ill-informed Latin American accents in film history. But then again, that may have contributed a sizeable amount to its larger-than-life status.

4 Halle Berry as Storm in “œX-Men”(2000)

Oscar winner Halle Berry is the definition of hit-and-miss, usually a lot more on the miss side. Tackling the role of African weather-manipulating mutant Ororo Munro saw her take on an inscrutable accent that only served to further weaken her overall wooden performance, and make her delivery of the notoriously awful “œtoad/lightning”joke damn near unbearable. Berry wisely stopped even trying to sound vaguely foreign in further installments.

3 Brad Pitt as Aldo Rain/ Benjamin Button, “œInglorious Basterds”(2009), “œThe Curious Case of Benjamin Button”(2008)

No matter how good the rest of his performance may be, something just never rings true when Pitt puts on a country boy twang. Accents are known to be the actor’s glaring weak point, but none more egregiously than when he visits below the Mason-Dixon; “œBasterds”even contains an ironically hilarious scene of his character struggling to adopt another accent on top of his quite phony redneck one.

2 Sean Connery as James Malone in “œThe Untouchables”(1987)

Sean Connery seems to stubbornly dare the world to take issue with his apparent refusal to even try to change his trademark cadence for roles that so clearly demand it. Yet while most of us don’t question it, upon proper examination, the rough and unmistakable Scottish brogue emanating from a Soviet submarine captain, or this film’s explicitly Irish Chicago beat cop, is a bit baffling.

1 Keanu Reeves as Jonathan Harker in “œBram Stoker’s Dracula”(1992)

This vibrant take on Dracula might have approached exceptional were it not for one little hitch: Coppola’s casting of perennial beach dude Reeves as a genteel Victorian English gentleman. The casting went about as well as any sketch comedy program would hypothesize. Keanu in his place is just fine, but this clearly is not it.

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