When it comes to studying the history of bad hair in movies, you have to dismiss two chapters.
There's intentionally bad 'dos played for laughs ("Dumb and Dumber," "Kingpin," and really any other Farrelly Bros. comedy), and there's the dated looks of yonder years (one could write an entire screed against the asymmetrical, unnaturally dyed, and just plain ugly locks sported by the Brat Pack in the '80s).
That leaves 'dos like that of Edward Norton in the new dramatic thriller "Stone." Norton's cheesy style is just spit-take awful, so bad that it's both inspired and earned in a place in our cringe-worthy rundown of the worst cinematic hairstyles.
Tom Hanks in 'The Da Vinci Code' (2006)
Hanks really gives his all for a role, follicularly-speaking (see his wild-man beard in "Cast Away"). As Robert Langdon in "Code," Hanks runs wildly around Paris, trying to solve a murder that took place in the Louvre, and hints about a secret society of the ancient men who "created history." Apparently, Langdon was too busy saving humanity to ever wash or cut his hair. It sits atop his head like a sleeping cat -- with, natch, a little length in the back and winged out in the front -- affixed with some sort of super-strength styling balm. This 'do is the epitome of a failed "I'm in My Fifties, But I Am Still Cool" coif attempt.
Angelina Jolie in 'Life or Something Like It' (2002)
In this box-office bust, Jolie came scarily close to looking – gasp – unattractive. Director Stephen Herek and the makeup crew came up with an almost-unwatchable hairstyle for her news reporter Lanie Kerrigan – a short, over-processed mop. You can chart the arc of her character -- who is told she will die shortly by a homeless man (Tony Shalhoub) -- through her locks. Early on, Kerrigan's a go-go career gal who looks like she starts the day with hot rollers and loads of Aqua-Net. After Kerrigan starts contemplating her life after the run-in with homeless dude, she realizes that there is more to life than work. After this heavy revelation, Jolie literally lets her hair down. She wears her ice-blond locks lanky and straight, often topped by a trucker cap. How Ashton.
Taylor Lautner in 'Twilight' (2008)
We know how much the ladies love Jacob Black, but there's no denying the monstrosity that was the teen wolf's straight long coiffure in the first installment on this beloved series. It's a good thing you took the scissors to it: Jacob didn't stand a chance against Edward in the battle for Bella's love with that flowing flagrant foul. She wants a warrior who fight for her honor, not Anne Hathaway in "The Princess Diaries." It's a wonder he wasn't kicked out of the anti-vampire resistance for this offense.
Brad Pitt in 'Johnny Suede' (1992)
In this ahead-of-its-time fairy-tale-ish film noir from Tom DiCillo, Pitt is the eponymous wannabe retro-rocker with a sky-high pompadour and a passable style, but less-than-great luck with his career (and the ladies). That is, until he finds that life-changing pair of black suede shoes. After romantic drama leads to Catherine Keener, Johnny realizes what real happiness is, and that life doesn't revolve around cool shoes. Almost immediately, of course, his super-high hair deflates.
Tina Turner in 'Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome' (1985)
As Aunty Entity, "bad guy" to Mel Gibson's angry hero in the third "Mad Max" installment, Turner runs the post-apocalyptic village known as Bartertown, and more importantly, sports a truly evil weave. Her dry, long-haired blond wig waves in the desert heat cries out for a dose of Kiehl's Creme with Silk Groom.
Edward Norton in 'Stone' (2010)
In this cat-and-mouse thriller, Stone (Norton) is a shifty arsonist who uses his hot girlfriend (Milla Jovovich) to manipulate his parole officer (Robert De Niro) to gain freedom. But the true star of the movie is Norton's tight, white-dude cornrows. Norton is a helluva an actor, stoic and passionate at once, yet we're too distracted by his braids here to get a feel for his character. Now that we've broached the subject, can we please call a moratorium for white guys and cornrows?
Chris Tucker in 'The Fifth Element' (1997)
Wearing what can only be likened to a giant-sized loofah on his forehead like a horn, Tucker plays the evil DJ Ruby Rhod in "Fifth Element," the colorful sci-fi flick starring Bruce Willis…humanity's only hope. The movie was directed by auteur Luc Besson, which begs the question, who said the French have superior taste?
Cameron Diaz in 'Being John Malkovich' (1999)
Think Cameron Diaz can't possibly look ugly? You must not have seen "Being John Malkovich," wherein her beauty is completely obliterated courtesy of her messy 'do. Sporting what could only be called an "I Don’t Give a F**k" 'do, Diaz co-starred with the almost equally badly groomed John Cusack, who plays a puppeteer who finds a portal into the mind of John Malkovich. As Lotte Schwartz, Diaz's locks scream mousy…she has a loose frizzy perm with bangs (ouch); girlfriend needs a hot-oil treatment, stat!
John Travolta in 'Battlefield Earth' (2000)
Travolta's Terl -- leader of the Psyclos, who are killing off humans and stealing all of the planet's remaining resources -- has some of the nastiest stuff emanating out his scalp that we've ever witnessed. In what can only be called fake-rubber-snake-like dreads, Terl's hair and beard are the scariest thing about the movie, and that's saying a lot about this infamous turkey. Even more disturbing are the two mini dreadlocks hanging below Travolta's nose like giant, furry boogers.
Javier Bardem in 'No Country for Old Men' (2007)
The Coen Brothers are famous for creating ugly beauty in their movies (just consider poor Frances McDormand's Marge in "Fargo"). In "No Country for Old Men," the Coens do what some might have thought impossible -- they made a haircut itself terrifying. As the uber-evil Anton Chigurh, Javier Bardem wears a Prince Valiant pageboy 'do that's incongruous enough to unsettle viewers. Yeah, the whole "murder by cattle gun" thing is pretty intimidating, but the hair's what really scared us.
Dwayne Johnson in 'Be Cool' (2005)
As Elliot Wilhelm, a rhinestone-cowboy-meets-gangster, The Rock sports a short, meticulously sculpted 'fro and goatee that's just one of many, many things wrong with this critically reviled sequel to the beloved 1995 gangster comedy "Get Shorty." We'll just say that this look is most definitely not cool.
Natalie Portman in ' Star Wars' (1999-2005)
Portman's Padmé (wife of Anakin Skywalker, for all you non-geeks) is a true beauty, but she's too often made scary-looking by an overzealous hair-and-makeup department. Her hair has a number of bad, bad incarnations. One look involves long spiral dreadlocks, some spangled with beads, held back with a "futuristic" metallic headband. And harking back to Carrie Fisher's 'do in the original "Star Wars," Padmé also wears her hair gathered into two donut-like side-buns. George Lucas, haven't you made women suffer enough?
Johnny Depp in 'Cry-Baby' (1990)
Depp is Wade Walker, a 1950s-style "greaser" whose locks certainly live up to the slang. Director John Waters, who came of age in the post-WWII era, gave Depp an over-the-top "drape" 'do so insulting it made us break our rule that we'd resist "of the time" hairstyles for this list. Lacquered by at least an entire tube of Brylcreem, Cry-Baby's hair is combed within an inch of its life on the sides, pushed up into a lustrous tangle of hair that hangs down over his gorgeous face. How does he get the girl again?
Halle Berry in the 'X-Men' Trilogy (2000-2006)
In all three "X-Men" movie, poor Berry (who plays Storm) is saddled with a trio of wholly unique, yet equally awful, hairdos. In "X-Men," there's what looks like a cheap, unruly stripper wig; long and white-blond with bangs. In "X-2," Berry sports a Gwen Stefani-hued longish shag that is way obviously a wig -- viewers can clearly see where the net foundation attaches to her forehead. Finally, in "X Men: The Last Stand," Berry's wig can only be described as what happens when a grey-haired suburban mom asks for a "kicky, choppy cut" and gets what she deserves.
Nicolas Cage in Anything
We love the guy, but the prematurely bald actor has had horrific hair in pretty much every movie he's made, from his breakout role in 1983's "Valley Girl" to this summer's "The Sorcerer's Apprentice." Go ahead, IMDB him, we'll wait.