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It's fun to kill people. You, of all people should try sometime.
~ Ray talking to Tony

Ray Marcus is the main antagonist of the 2016 American neo-noir psychological thriller film, Nocturnal Animals.

He was portrayed by Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who also played William Rollins.


When Susan Morrow, a rich art gallery owner living in Los Angeles recieves a package from his ex-husband Edward that contains Edward's first novel, he wants Susan's opinion about it, the novel is called Nocturnal Animals (as Edward used to call Susan).

The novel's story follows a family man called Tony with a wife and a teenage daughter, when they are on a family vacation trip in Texas, they get in trouble with a gang on a car, they are pulled over by them and then the leader (Ray Marcus) proceeds to the car, he talks to Tony and calls the situation an "accident" and that he must wait, his gang and him keep a passive-aggressive behaviour with Tony's family and his daughter keeps insulting them, after Ray offers Tony to change their flat tire, Tony accepts and Ray demands everyone to step out of the car so they can change it, Ray continues to threat Tony and his family, they try to stop a cop car passing by but they fail, Ray doesn't like this and after the tire has been changed, Ray tells Tony they are "going to a police station to report the accident", but under the only condition that he drives Tony's car with his family and Tony drives Ray's car with one of his gang, he then forces them to obey and kidnapps Tony's family, then Tony gets on Ray's car with Lou, one of his gang members, then Lou drops Tony in the middle of the desert without him knowing where's his family, Tony walks for a while but then Ray and Lou return searching for Tony, but he hides among the desert rocks, in the morning, Tony managesto contact the police after walking a long way to a house, after being interrogated he passes the night in a motel, the morning after the police tells Tony they found his car but not his family, then they inform him they are passing the case to Detective Bobby Andes, Bobby meets with Tony and asks him to reconstruct his journey through the desert, this leds them to the spot where Tony was abandoned by Lou, nearby an abandoned house, but then Bobby finds Tony's wife and daughter dead in a red couch among the weeds, after returning to the police station, Bobby informs Tony they were raped, and that maybe his case is gonna take longer than expected as he is the only witness, one night Bobby sends a picture of one of the gang members but because of his PTSD he is not able to remember him.


Ray first encounter with Tony

One year passes and Tony gets a call from Bobby, in Texas Bobby informs Tony that a store was robbed by three people, one of them was killed, the other escaped and the final one was captured, Tony then recognizes him as Lou, this leds Bobby to Ray, so he takes Tony with him to Ray's house in the middle of nowhere, they find him defecating on a toilet installed on his porch, Bobby tells Tony he has been accused of rape before but was never proved, they then take Ray with them on Tony's car, Bobby interrogates Ray, but he keeps denying that he knows either the car or Tony, Andes arrests Ray, but is ultimately forced to release him as they only have circumstantial evidence of his involvement. On the verge of retirement and having been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, Andes decides to take matters into his own hands and with Tony's help abducts Ray and Lou.

Ray's evil grin

They take them to Bobby's house, he then gives Tony his gun so he can shoot whoever he wants, Bobby because of his lung cancer gets distracted and pukes, this allows Lou and Ray to escape with Tony not knowing what to do, Andes takes his gun from Tony and shoots Lou while Ray escapes in the night, with Lou dying in the ground and begging for his life, Bobby shoots him in cold blood, Tony has an emotional breakdown and yells at Bobby that he is happy that Lou is dead but that non of these would have happened if he had defended his family, Bobby helps Tony and then they split to look for Ray.

Tony tracks Ray down on his own to the shack where his wife and daughter were raped and killed and the two have a violent confrontation,  in which Ray admits to raping and murdering Tony's wife and daughter, calling him weak, Ray grabs an iron bar without Tony noticing it and then Tony shoots Ray in the chest but Ray manages to hit Tony in the head with the iron bar, in the morning Tony discovers he has been blinded by the hit ti the head with the iron bar. Tony touches something with his foot, is Ray corpse, Tony makes sure he is dead and then he stumbles outside, succumbing to his brain hemorrhage, and dies after falling on his gun, shooting himself in the stomach in the process.


Ray Marcus promotional poster