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Frank Booth

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Don't you look at me! Don't you f***kin' look at me!
~ Frank Booth

Frank Booth is the main antagonist of the 1986 psychological thriller film Blue Velvet. A brutal crime lord with a psychotic, unrestrained personality, Frank is considered by some as one of the most vile villains in cinema, a trait that has served to promote him to both fame and infamy as one of cinema's most recognized live-action villains.

He was portrayed by the late veteran actor Dennis Hopper, who also portrayed King Koopa in the Super Mario Brothers Movie, as well as Howard Payne.


Frank Booth is a leading figure in North Carolina's criminal underworld, dealing in drugs and prostitution - gaining more influence by having any rivals murdered and is aided by a corrupt detective nicknamed the "Yellow Man" who steals the drugs from the murdered rivals' crime scenes and secretly hands them back to Booth, thus allowing him to sell them off.

He has a brutal relationship with Dorothy Vallens, a beautiful singer who brings huge crowds into the local nightclub and he gains complete control over her when he kidnaps her son and husband, forcing sexual favors from her by mutilating her husband and threatening to kill her child if she refuses, Dorothy is so abused by Frank that she begins to develop a type of pleasure out of her mistreatment.

Addictive Frank Booth

Frank Booth inhaling amyl nitrate.

Frank's power is threatened by college student Jeffrey Beaumont, who finds the severed ear of Dorothy's husband which Frank had dropped by accident - Jeffery becomes obsessed with uncovering the truth behind it and breaks into Dorothy's apartment where he witnesses her being abused by Frank - when he discovers Jeffrey. At first Frank is dismissive and simply beats him up alongside his minions to teach him a lesson but let him walk free.

However, Jeffrey informs the local detective (who happened to be his girlfriend's father) of the incident - the detective warns Jeffrey not to get any more involved, yet Jeffrey didn't take the advice and decides to try and save Dorothy's son after Frank beats Dorothy badly, strips her naked, and tosses her in front of Jeffrey's house.
Jeffrey rushes to Dorothy's apartment in hopes of rescuing her son - finding Dorothy's husband tied to a chair, having been shot in the head as well as the Yellow Man, whom Frank has crudely lobotomized (though he was still alive).

Frank would then return to the apartment himself after police raid his home and he overhears Jeffrey calling for help on a police radio. Jeffrey, aware that Frank was coming, deliberately gives the police false information as to his whereabouts, so as to throw Frank off his trail, but this fails.


Frank Booth's death

Frank Booth's death

As Frank arrives at the apartment and kills the Yellow Man and searches the apartment for Jeffrey, Frank is suddenly ambushed and shot dead by Jeffrey, who had managed to take the Yellow Man's gun before Frank stormed the place.


Frank is completely insane, even by movie villain standards - he kills people on a whim and is a violent sadist with a liking of using a gas-mask to drug himself during his brutal acts against Dorothy, in which he would seem to lose all sense of reality (or what little he had to begin with) and seems to switch from two personalities named "daddy" and "baby".

Frank also cries uncontrollably at some points in the film, when hearing Dorothy sing "Blue Velvet" and when one of his minions lip-syncs to "In Dreams".

He also brutally tortured and killed Dorothy's husband and even lobotomized the Yellow Man, who was one of his benefactors - despite his insanity he was a very influential crime lord, though it could well have been due to fear.

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