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Top 10 Peter Capaldi Performances

Credits: Sean Harris
Written by Richard Bush From corny horror to convoluted swear words. This guy’s career is seriously something to marvel at. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Peter Capaldi performances. For this list, we’re looking at the acting highlights of Scottish writer, director and actor Peter Capaldi. Special thanks to our user Hogriam for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Peter Capaldi Performances


From corny horror to convoluted swear words. This guy’s career is seriously something to marvel at. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Peter Capaldi performances.

For this list, we’re looking at the acting highlights of Scottish writer, director and actor Peter Capaldi.

#10: George Harrison
“John and Yoko: A Love Story” (1985)


We start with one of the most famous faces on this list, and an example of Capaldi’s early character acting. Okay, so the film as a whole was a bit pants, but there are some redeeming qualities, one of which is Capaldi’s take on Harrison. He’s got the hair and the accent to suit, but it’s Capaldi’s ability to portray the increasingly frustrating and toxic atmosphere within the band that really sells it. Plus, Capaldi as a Beatle? Yes please.

#9: Various Roles
“The All New Alexei Sayle Show” (1994-95)


Sketch shows. It seems any Brit who has gone on to do anything remotely comedy-related has been in one at some point, and Peter is no different. Appearing alongside Alexei Sayle for a series of different sketches, it’s a great example of Capaldi’s ability to tackle absurd topics, and be hilarious while doing so. And it’s his drunk dabble in time travel that he has become best known for in the show. Now, where have we seen that before?

#8: Angus Flint
“The Lair of the White Worm” (1988)


Good, evil, snakes, vampires and lots of really weird stuff in between. That pretty much sums up “The Lair of the White Worm”. In this hilarious horror, cheese is turned up to 11 and we’re along for the ride with Capaldi’s Angus Flint to try and make sense of some strange gothic goings on - oh, and Hugh Grant’s in it as well. An early effort that shows our man knows how to toe the line between drama and comedy, it’s probably a performance he’d rather forget, but we love it all the same.

#7: Mr. Curry
“Paddington” (2014)


Dropping his Scottish tones for cockney, Capaldi plays Paddington’s grumpy neighbour Mr. Curry in this live-action adaptation. Ultimately manipulated by Nicole Kidman’s taxidermist baddie Millicent Clyde and helping to capture Paddington, he’s pitched early on as a villainous accomplice. However, Capaldi helps show us that maybe Mr. Curry isn't as bad as he seems, and that under his irritable shell lies a softer, caring man. We’d have Curry as our neighbour any day.

#6: Danny Oldsen
“Local Hero” (1983)


Although it may look a little dated now, “Local Hero” offers an incredibly compelling story about the oil industry and the integrity of one man in particular who is won over by the residents of a small Scottish village. Peter Riegert takes the leading role, but Capaldi gets a story arc of his own, as the young, slightly naive Danny, who becomes infatuated with Jenny Seagrove’s Marina. It’s one of his very first movie roles, and a real gem for any Capaldi fanatic.

#5: Cardinal Richelieu
“The Musketeers” (2014-2016)


After seeing Capaldi sport a magnificent mustache and play a machiavellian Cardinal, it’s a wonder he doesn't always play the villain. Stealing the show in the first series of “The Musketeers”, Capaldi plays the backstabber role brilliantly, interrogating and condemning anyone who gets in his way. Unfortunately, he didn’t appear in the second series - but any screen time he did get, he absolutely bossed!

#4: John Frobisher
“Torchwood: Children of Earth” (2009)


The word tragic doesn't quite cut it here. Acting as the government’s middleman to an alien invasion that threatens the future of Earth’s children, Capaldi’s John Frobisher is forced to make the ultimate, soul-crushing decision. Unlike some dramatic performances that peak towards the end, Capaldi’s turn as Frobisher is engrossing, and exhausting, from start to finish. He’s convincing to the point where it’s difficult to watch. John Frobisher was indeed a good man.

#3: Randall Brown
“The Hour” (2011-2012)


To another multi-layered performance and one that sees Capaldi’s Head of BBC News Randall Brown go through a rollercoaster of emotions. When he’s not trying to steer the ship with his professional hat on, he’s trying to keep things together and find his daughter, doing anything necessary to do so - blackmail included. Capaldi nails the desperate parent role, with some heartbreaking scenes that see him completely fall apart, only to put on a brave face moments afterwards. Powerful stuff.

#2: Malcolm Tucker
“In the Loop” & “The Thick of It” (2009/2005-12)


It’s tough to play a character that is equally despicable and loveable, but Capaldi manages it gloriously as political spin doctor Malcolm Tucker. Always on hand to flatten potential media frenzies, and whoever gets in his way in the process, his insults and boiling rage almost poetic, well, sort of. Portraying the character in both “The Thick of It” TV series and later in a feature-length spin off “In the Loop”, Capaldi is flawless as Tucker, popping veins and all.

#1: The Doctor
“Doctor Who” (1963-)


Frequently touted as one of the top Time Lords to take the reins of the TARDIS, Capaldi managed to merge many of the qualities we’d come to love about previous incarnations. With his witty one liners, intelligible put downs and ability to keep his head in even the stickiest of situations, Capaldi’s Twelfth Doctor oozes wise, war-torn traveller, and yet he’s never afraid to be a bit childish. Capaldi’s had some outstanding performances over the years, and with the Doctor now behind him, who knows what’s next!
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