[[caption-width-right:300:''" I was raised on a farm in Moooresville, Indiana. My mama died when I was three, my daddy beat the hell out of me cause he didn't know no better way to raise me. I like baseball, movies, good clothes, fast cars, whiskey, and you... what else you need to know?"'']]
->Played By: Creator/JohnnyDepp
* AffablyEvil: Dillinger is handsome, charming, and won't hesitate to smash your face against a hard surface if you stand between him and something he wants, like Billie Frechette.
* BadassLongcoat: And how. They're good for concealing Thompson submachine guns.
* ForegoneConclusion: [[spoiler:Dillinger's eventual death at the end.]]
* HistoricalBeautyUpdate: Hardly surprising, seeing as he's played by Johnny Depp.
* ImpersonatingAnOfficer: Does this quite memorably near the end of the movie; he even asks for the score on a baseball game that is going on!
* ManlyTears: When he watches the woman he loves being arrested and put into handcuffs because of her association with him.
* TrojanPrisoner: We open with this.
* VillainProtagonist: Subverted in that even the public considered him more of an AntiHero than a villain.
* WellSeeAboutThat: Dillinger says this to Purvis after being taunted that he'll never leave his jail cell until being removed for his execution in the electric chair. Though Purvis and Dillinger never actually spoke to each other, Dillinger did have multiple in-prison encounters with his original pursuer - Indiana State Police detective Matt Leach, who was somewhat more competent than the FBI in pursuing Dillinger.
* YouMustBeCold: Dillinger does this twice: once to a hostage bank teller and once to Billie. Both times, he hands these girls coats. All of it is Truth in Television as this was considered one of Dillinger's more renowned trademarks.
!! Melvin Purvis
[[caption-width-right:300:''"I'm afraid our type cannot get the job done."'']]
->Played By: Creator/ChristianBale
* HeWhoFightsMonsters: His entire arc. You can clearly see in Bale's performance each time he compromises his values for the sake of getting the job done, and how much it weighs on him. [[spoiler: Even Dillinger comments on this]]
* IdiotBall: Tends to take it and run with it when it concerns Dillinger
* PoliceBrutality: While he himself does not participate, he is well aware of how several members of his squad got their information - but he draws the line at slapping around a woman.
** The case in question, Billie Frechette, might be because Purvis knows that she is an innocent person who probably knows little of what Dillinger was up to. In real life, his secretary also was appalled at the way Billie Frechette's interrogation went.
* SlowlySlippingIntoEvil: Arguably passed this when he allowed the torture of Tommy Carroll
!! J. Edgar Hoover
[[caption-width-right:300:''"I thought you understood what I'm building. A modern force of professional young men of the best sort. "'']]
* PoliceBrutality: Is implied to know about the methods his newly created FBI is using.