Movie deaths that stayed with you...

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Jefferson Morris, Aug 15, 2005.

  1. Jefferson Morris

    Jefferson Morris Supporting Actor

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    All,

    What cinematic deaths have stayed with you? That is, which demises have been particularly memorable and/or disturbing for you? They can be gruesome (Peter Weller in Robocop), beautiful (Brando in The Godfather), or just plain odd (Kevin's parents in Time Bandits).

    Here's a couple:

    Murphy's War, with Peter O'Toole.
    I've never even seen this film all the way through, but after catching the ending, when...O'Toole, flush with triumph after finally sinking that German sub with a torpedo he's hoisted on a crane, is accidentally pinned and pulled underwater when the entire platform he's on sinks into the bay.
    Perhaps it's the almost nonchalant quality of the actor's performance, or just the bitter irony of it, but it's stayed with me for years.

    Another, oddly, is from Thunderball, just broadcast on AMC recently - it's when that pilot is trapped underwater in his fighter plane and the scuba diver approaches him to rescue him (he thinks), but instead cuts the guy's air hose and leaves him to drown.

    Okay, so maybe I've got a thing about drowning. These are just two that came to mind. Others?

    --Jefferson Morris
     
  2. Paul Padilla

    Paul Padilla Supporting Actor

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    Wilson floating away to his doom
    in Castaway.[​IMG] I'm sort of kidding and sort of not. Really, it was Tom Hank's reaction to the whole thing that got me.

    But seriously, I think Tears of The Sun had a really tough scene when the tribal woman died after having her breasts cut off.
    Disturbing, to say the least.

    Not really a death scene, but in And The Band Played On, it struck me that more than once when individuals were informed that they had AIDS, it wasn't them but their spouse/significant other who broke down.

    I guess the ones that stand out to me show the reality and pain of what's left behind, rather than the death itself.
     
  3. Robert Powers

    Robert Powers Stunt Coordinator

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    For some reason when Bruce Willis
    was killed in the movie "Billy Bathgate" came to my mind when I read this thread.
     
  4. MichaelD

    MichaelD Stunt Coordinator

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    In Saving Private Ryan
    the way the guy was slowly killed with the knife. That just really sticks with me.
     
  5. Jefferson Morris

    Jefferson Morris Supporting Actor

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    I'm going to assume everyone in the world has seen Saving Private Ryan, so no spoiler tags below...

    Yes, Melish's death by bayonet is a doozy. But even worse for me was Wade, the medic, and mostly because of Ribisi's performance. The character was just so acutely conscious of what was happening to him that it made it very difficult for me to watch. Particularly when he calls for his mother.

    --Jefferson Morris
     
  6. Jason Walstrom

    Jason Walstrom Supporting Actor

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    That's exactly the same scene that still disturbs me. truthfully I skip over it now if I watch it. I can't handle it.
     
  7. DavidPla

    DavidPla Cinematographer

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    In "Scream 2", a character I liked a lot and died so quickly ...

    When Randy is suddenly pulled into the van and repeatedly stabbed to death. Still upsets me to watch such a cool movie character that you've grown to like through two films killed off like that.

    Call me a wimp but in "Forrest Gump" when...

    Bubba dies.

    In "Fellowship of the Ring" when

    Gandalf falls. Sure he came back in the sequel but that moment when he fell was so effective, maybe in due part because of the reaction of the Fellowship.
     
  8. Bill Williams

    Bill Williams Screenwriter

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    Some of the cinematic deaths that affected me, in no uncertain order:

    "Superman: The Movie":
    the death of Jonathan Kent


    "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan"
    Spock's death at the end of the film

    "Titanic":
    when Rose discovers that Jack has frozen to death
    - okay, I'm a guy, but hey, it was pretty darn affecting, not to mention the deaths of the other 1500
    .

    "The Lion King":
    when Simba finds his father Mufasa has been trampled to death
     
  9. Mike Williams

    Mike Williams Screenwriter

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    Jon Voigt in
    "The Champ" with Ricky Schroeder continually saying, "Wake up, Champ."


    I was young when I saw it and I haven't seen it since, but it is still very moving to me.

    Also:

    James Caan
    in "The Godfather" and Robert Shaw
    in "Jaws." Even if I hadn't seen them countless times and have them on DVD, I'd still NEVER get those images out of my mind.
     
  10. Holadem

    Holadem Lead Actor

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    Mike, a spoiler tag is pretty much useless if we don't know what it's spoiling.

    Ditto for Saving Private Ryan> Probably the worse one for me.

    --
    H
     
  11. Kami

    Kami Screenwriter

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    The most recent one was in Downfall when that lady (I can't remember names when I am readin subtitles for some reason) kills all her children with that fast acting poison in their sleep.

    I am usually not disturbed by stuff in movies but that one put a bad feeling in my gut for some reason.
     
  12. Mikel_Cooperman

    Mikel_Cooperman Producer

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    The death in Terms of Endearment
    The death in The Champ
    The death in Beaches
    The death in Sophie's Choice
    The death in Star Trek 2
    The ship blowing up in Star Trek 3 (if you are a Star Trek fan you'll understand.)
     
  13. Janna S

    Janna S Second Unit

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    Ratso
    in Midnight Cowboy
     
  14. Alex Spindler

    Alex Spindler Producer

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    Out of Sight - Maurice 'Snoopy' Miller gets shot several times, sort of out of the blue. Considering the lofty aims he had, it was a less than epic end. The way his body locks up and then he quickly lies silently slumped over White Boy Bob just gets me.

    L.A. Confidential - Watching the life drain out of Jack Vincennes is nearly unsurpassed. Sadly, it was the last time I was truly impressed by a Kevin Spacy performance.

    Heist - Pinky dies and he knows it almost from the moment he drops his neice off. From that point on, his life is simply a cog in the machine and there wasn't going to be a happy ending in it for him.

    The Swarm - Peter Fonda's death comes as such a surprise because they bring you to the point of death once and then show the antidote working. When he has problems afterwards, it just comes after the relief and hits hard. He really sells it too in one of my favorite acted death scenes.
     
  15. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Executive Producer

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    Sixth Sense whenyou discover on the videotape that the mother had been slowly poisoning her daughter the whole time; there's something horribly and innately unnatural about that.
     
  16. Kevin Grey

    Kevin Grey Cinematographer

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    To Live and Die in LA:

    William Petersen taking a shotgun to the face.
     
  17. JohnMor

    JohnMor Producer
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    In Vertigo, when Kim Novack's character falls off the tower at the end. Totally unexpected the first time I saw it, and to have the movie end immediately at that point without a scene or so to come to terms with it was really haunting.


    In Oliver!, when Nancy is beaten to death by Bill Sykes. Really traumatized me as a kid.
     
  18. Jassen M. West

    Jassen M. West Supporting Actor

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    What, no votes for Boromir
    ?
     
  19. Scott McGillivray

    Scott McGillivray Supporting Actor

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    The opening scene in "Goodfellas" was really harsh. I was just so shocked at the brutality. Still bugs me.

    "Million Dollar Baby" is a recent one that really touched me.

    "Braveheart" That is one film I usually turn off before the end.

    "The Professional" really choked me up.

    Lots and lots of others. I am a real softie when it comes to dramatic deaths on screen.
     
  20. Jefferson Morris

    Jefferson Morris Supporting Actor

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    Another one I thought of, from an oldie but goodie, the 1937 Captains Courageous. This one always choked my Dad up:Spencer Tracy's loveable cook is fatally injured by the ship's rigging during an accident on a sailing ship. Under the water he's mutilated, but with his head and shoulders still above the water, he hangs on long enough to say goodbye to little Freddie Bartholomew.

    And of course how could I forget The Abominable Dr. Phibes (or its sequel, can't remember). So many twisted offings to choose from. I liked the long, slow draining of blood, and the spiky phone receiver.

    And though it wasn't quite technically a death (then again, neither was Weller in Robocop), the "Sloth" victims
    in Se7en. That brought back traumatic memories of The Exorcist - a whitish, emaciated thing tied to a bed. Yeesh.

    --Jefferson Morris
     

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