Friday, July 18, 2008

Top 11 Female Death Scenes

Entertainment Weekly put out a list of the Top 25 Death Scenes. A quick glance can see that most of the classics are there. The Fargo woodchipper. T-1000 melting. Darth Vader with his mask off. They're all there. But what I noticed was the 4/5 of the list were dying men. Women can die just as good as men, have been since the beginning of time.

Death scenes can be depressing, powerful, exciting, gory, etc. Sometimes they have speeches preceding them. Other times the surprise is what makes them memorable. This list has it all. Here's the Top 11 Female Death Scenes.

11. Terms of Endearment
The most memorable scene of ToE is when the dying mother says goodbye to her sons. It isn't until a little later that she actually dies. But combine the two, and you've got a death scene worthy of being called "number 11."

10. Battle Royale
If you haven't seen this yet, then you're missing out. Forty-two teenage students are put onto an island. They're told that they have three days to kill each other. The last one alive gets to go home. If there's more than one left at the end of the three days, the collars they're all wearing explode creating space between their shoulders and their bowl cuts.

09. Kill Bill
Tarantino knows how to shoot a death scene. Actually, Norifumi Suzuki really knows how. The snow battle scene was an homage to his Sex and Fury (1973). A really bad "little off the top joke" would be in order if this wasn't such a classy establishment.

08. Tenebre
This one's not for the kiddies. It's the second bloodiest scene on the list. Dario Argento loves blood like I love Jack-in-the-Box Jalepeno Peppers dipped in tartar sauce. Don't knock'em 'til you try'em.

07. Bambi
Not as sad as the Artax/Swamp of Sadness scene. Turns out, Artax was a dude. Guess a dead mommy deer will have to do.

06. Texas Chainsaw Massacre
This clip from How to Execute a Prisoner...Texas Style has inspired many of the state's greatest executions. Right after this clip, Leatherface shows us how the right spices can make or break your 4th of July BBQ.

05. Suspiria
Argento with another kick-ass death scene. The action comes about two minutes in. Be patient. It's worth it. I hadn't seen anything like this before.
The colors, children, the colors.

04. The Omen
Not quite the Pow-Pow-Power Wheels Damien had been hoping for for his birthday. But I guess this will have to do.

03. Assault on Precinct 13
Powerless without her twin brother Tony, Tia should have tried moving out of the way rather than stopping the bullet with her mind. Maybe she could have blocked it with her Star Case.

02. Thelma & Louise
Say what you will, this is a great death scene. Driving off a cliff instead of going to jail? Damn the Man! Women's lib all the way. Too bad Geena Davis' career is still lying at the bottom of that cliff.

01. Psycho
Speaking of women's lib, here's a scene of a sexy, wet, naked woman getting stabbed to death with a phallic object by a madman dressed up in women's clothing. Never really thought about like that until right now.

What are your favorite death scenes? Leave some comments and become eligible to be like Keith and win next month's HCSTCA!


whitney said...

Was Mufasa's death on the top 50? That was sad...

PIPER said...

Dario. Always with the windows!

That's probably the best scene in Battle Royale - it's all paranoia. Meanwhile that dude is upstairs locked up.

And so, so nice to see Assault on Precinct 13. You're a man after my own heart.

elgringo said...

My first post was on Precinct 13. It's one of my absolute favorites.

Keith said...

Kill Bill is interesting... the more familiar you become with Japanese exploitation flicks, the more you realize that nearly every shot is an homage/ripoff/whatever from another movie. It doesn't ruin it or anything (at least for me), just makes it work as kind of a weird collage.

All 10 of my favorite deaths are in one movie: Riki-Oh. See for example this scene, or this one. In fact, watch the whole damn movie if you haven't seen it. Runners up would have to be any death from Machine Girl or Tokyo Gore Police.

whitney said...

Once I borrowed a copy of Ricky-O and I had to give it back before I had a chance to see it. (that's a lie, I had lots of chances in that year and half, I just never did watch it).

Now I'm sad.


Nageoire said...

I know this may seem a bit cliche, but the death scene in Braveheart of William Wallace's newlywed young wife has always (in my opinion) been a powerful and captivating female death. The way she looks around for her knight in shining armour to save her at the last moment is intense. But the fact that William Wallace (her knight) doesn't show up speaks even more volumes to that death scene. Not to mention they don't pan away as her throat is slit, but rather let you watch the life drain out of her. Then the knight in shining armour arrives too late. In addition, her death motivates the rest of the movie.

So in essence, her death makes the audience, feel mad, sad, vengeful, confused, and in shock all at the same time. I know I am completely biased with this opinion (as I do love this film), but her death says so much, with so little dialogue said, so early on in the film it is captivating.

I also agree that the Psycho death scene is by far the best female death on film as of yet.

elgringo said...

Oh man, you're so right about that Braveheart scene. The Gibson-death-scene made EW's Top 25 but I completely forgot about her death scene. Good thinkin'

Fletch said...

I don't think it's even a death scene, but thinking about females reminded me of one of my favorite scenes from Pulp Fiction.

Bruce Willis has just tagged Ving Rhames with his Volksrabbit. Rhames rises, clearly jarred from the hit he just took. Someone asks him if he's ok, informs him of who hit him. He looks over, glassy-eyed, spies Bruce, and fires off a poorly-aimed shot that hits a female bystander.

I'm not sure if it was meant to be funny, but it cracked me the hell up. I vote for that one. :)

Otherise, I gotta go with Psycho, though I haven't seen most of the films in your list.

Anonymous said...

I am shocked and saddened by the oversight of one Betsy Palmer, aka Mrs. Vorhees, the quite literal mother of iconic modern-day monsters. She lost her freakin' head for that role, and did you see the emoting she did by merely scrunching her hands once it was lopped off?! She lost her only child, at least Meryl Streep got to keep one of 'em in Sophie's Choice.