Kate: The 8 Best Characters | ScreenRant

Netflix's latest action release is Kate with Mary Elizabeth Winstead as the titular badass character. The movie is a fun mix of John Wick and Crank with some wild action sequences and a ticking clock pace that keeps viewers hooked. But one way it stands out in the genre is its interesting characters.

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While Winstead's Kate is obviously at the center of the story, there are a lot of colorful characters who bring the story to life. From the formidable villains to the sympathetic allies, there are some great characters who are fun to hate and some worth cheering for.

8 Stephen

Early in the movie, Kate meets Stephen (Michiel Huisman) for a casual night of sex before sending him on his way. However, that brief encounter sets the story in motion as he was hired to poison Kate.

Casting someone as recognizable as Huisman in the role was a bit of a red herring for audiences as it seemed like he would play a big role in the movie. However, he proves to just be an oblivious pawn who is trying to pay off a debt to the Yakuza. Though it is a nice way to keep audiences on their toes, it doesn't make for a very memorable character.

7 Shinzo

Shinzo (Kazuya Tanabe) is the main henchman working for the mob boss Renji who is sent to deal with Kate. He makes for an effectively creepy mini-villain but doesn't put up much of a fight against his enemy. He mostly sends his minions after Kate and is shot several times.

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Shinzo is also a very easy villain to hate as he is perfectly willing to kill young Ani at his boss's orders. Not only will he kill the child in cold blood but he also insults her as she begs for her life.

6 Renji

Though Renji (Tadanobu Asano) initially seems like a mid-level villain, he is revealed to be more trouble than he initially seems. He is not only the one who poisoned Kate but also betrays his own team in an attempt to take over as the new crime boss.

Renji seems to be the kind of villain who thinks he is a lot smarter and stronger than he actually is. When his actions begin to catch up with him, he turns into a scared and insecure punk. This leads to a very satisfying end for the character as he proves he is not as skilled a samurai as he pretended to be.

5 Jojima

Though Jojima is only in one scene in the movie, he makes a pretty big impression. He is the boyfriend of Renji and proves to be the most powerful and interesting villain in the whole movie. From his introduction as he sits with his feet in a fishbowl to his heavily tattooed appearance, the character is a ton of fun.

Jojima is meant to only serve as a slight obstacle in Kate's path, but he also shows a surprising amount of honor. Even at gunpoint, he refuses to tell Kate where she can find Renji and he is the only character who manages to beat her in a fight.

4 Varrick

Varrick (Woody Harrelson) is the typical mentor role for Kate before developing in some pretty predictable ways. He initially seems like a father figure before it is revealed he is one of the bad guys, but as much as the audience was expecting that, he still manages to avoid being too much of a cliché.

Woody Harrelson's best movie roles always have a balance of humor and darkness and that is true of Varrick as well. Once his true nature is revealed, Harrelson has more fun with the role and he also makes it clear that Varrick loves Kate in his own twisted way.

3 Kijima

Kijima (Jun Kunimura) is set up to be the big bad villain of the story but he represents another way the movie plays against the audience's expectations. Instead of being the scheming and brutal mobster fans think, he is a man filled with regret and looking to restore his honor.

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His soft-spoken and calm nature is in contrast to just about every other character in the movie, but that makes him seem even more impressive when he confidently gets in on the action. He also has a surprisingly tender heart, even showing sympathy to Kate when she needs it most.

2 Ani

Ani (Miku Martineau) is very much the heart of the story. While there have been many movies that pair the little girl with the deadly and badass assassin, Ani is a big reason this avoids feeling like a retread of the same idea.

Ani is a fun and entertaining character that is thankfully more complex than the usual young sidekick role. She gets hilariously angry at times, becomes infatuated by Kate as a warrior, and also shows the pain of her tragic backstory. She helps make it believable that Kate would find redemption with this little girl.

1 Kate

Mary Elizabeth Winstead has been impressive in a number of action roles in her career, but she really puts on a show as Kate. Even fighting through the deadly poison in her body, Kate is as deadly and efficient as John Wick and has that similar determination that makes her easy to cheer for.

Winstead's talents as an actor also help the audience care about her beyond the fight scenes. Kate's tortured past and the regret she feels make for a more complicated protagonist and really fun hero to follow on this bloody journey.

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