Most disturbing death scene?

AlienChestBurst.jpgI just read a very short article over at Entertainment Weekly where the critic answers readers questions, and they were asked what the most disturbing death scene is, they answered in an unusual way:

it’s hard to beat the childhood-scarring trauma of one hand-drawn deer’s demise in Bambi, with innocence shattered by the sound of a hunter’s bullet. For shock value, I’m partial to the first shark feeding in Jaws. But for Oscar-winning death porn, I think Braveheart reaps the grim prize.

Great choice, the Scots take a long time to die, it’s all the Haggis and Whisky…believe me, I’m delving into a bottle this evening.

Anyway, it got me thinking, what are the most disturbing death scenes I’ve seen? Well the Texas Chain Saw Massacre stays with me to this day, when I saw it aged about 12. The woman dropped onto the meat hook is awful, then popping out of the fridge later on…oh dear.

Recently though, I’d say that the death of the girl in Wolf Creek really haunts me. Watching that at 10am in the morning, press around me, I had my face in my hands and couldn’t believe how gruesome it was – mentally more than physically. His description of the act was terrible.

What about you? Let’s find out what the definitive most distrubing death scenes are in a movie, doesn’t have to be gruesome and full of gore, what’s really gotten to you? The Wicker Man burning? The Dead Zone scissor suicide?

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30 thoughts on “Most disturbing death scene?

  1. The scene in RoboCop where the dude gets hit by the car and the scene in Irreversible with the fire extinguisher. The most disturbing death scene happens to be in Requeim for a Dream. Tyrone (Marlon Wayans) is doing business with a local ganglord who’s deaf and the deaf guy says “If you fuck me, I’ll kill you”; the little window comes down and the caucasian driver shoots at the ganglord and his bodyguards. The deaf gangbanger jumps in front of Tyrone, gets shot and his insides splatter on Tyrone’s face.

  2. Great calls, all of you. Won’t argue with any of them.

    For some reason, this one sticks out:

    Damien Omen 2, the doctor who gets cut in half via an elevator cable… that has always stuck in my mind since I first saw it in the theater.

  3. When the surviving crew in house of a 1,000 corpses are dropped into dr.satan’s lair and the girl see’s the patients that made it and the demented look they gave her, and seeing her friend get cut open by the doctor. And the beast with gas mask chasing her in the hallways with the pus filled mouth.

  4. None of these even come close to “guinea pig 1 – devils experiment”

    with out doubt the most horrific and disturbing film ever. see it for ureself.

  5. Not mentioned yet, strangely enough, ‘Jacob’s Ladder’. It is not gory at the end. It is emotionally crushing and cathartic. In a way, the entire movie is one long death scene.

  6. A agree with Anon … the scene in “Irreversable” in the S&M club with the fire extinguisher. Horrid. Stayed with me for weeks. To this day I cannot figure out how Noe did it. It gives me chills to this day as I write this. Awful.

  7. Well, just to be different, I would go with a scene in Nightmare on Elm street part 3…when Freddy cuts open the arms and legs of someone and starts playing with her (I think it was a girl) as a puppet!! That was kinda freaky!! And also, in Friday the 13th part 3 when the doctor in the beginning has his neck cut and then his head turned around almost 360 degrees…

  8. I don’t know if this really constitutes a death scene or not… but the scenes involving Peter Weller’s Murphy character in Robocop being attacked and taken to the hospital really got to me.

  9. Most have been covered – Irreversible, Mr. Vengeance, Casino. Cronenberg’s newest, A History of Violence, gets there too, especially the first explosion of Viggo Mortenson’s, er, past life. I think the thing these have in common is being neither casual about nor numb to the physical and emotional consequences of rage. Exploitative gore (like Haute Tension) can show as much meat and blood as possible, but with nothing but a cartoonish human reference point – a body with no soul, as it were – it’s just nasty, not disturbing.

    Thanks for listening; I can sleep now.

  10. I am always partial to the original DAWN OF THE DEAD death scene where the man is pulled apart by the zombies. Never watch that whilst eating lasagna.

  11. I won’t watch really bloody movies or horror movies. I like sleeping at night. And the feeling afterwards last for days even weeks. So I stay away.

    Donna A.

  12. I recently saw “High Tension” on DVD and it was full of some of the bloodiest death scenes that I can remember. The goriness of the movie actually put me off, so I didn’t enjoy the movie as much as I thought I would.

  13. Any of the deaths in Henry; Portrait of a Serial Killer.

    A few of them I’ve never successfully blocked out of my mind.

  14. Oh wait…I forgot one. I know I forgot one. This was really disturbing when I saw it. Nothing much makes me squeamish, but this actually did.

    The film was co-produced by Fangoria, starred Bruce Campbell and Angus Scrimm from ‘Phantasm’…the film was called ‘Mindwarp’. Early 90’s flick. Anyway…

    ‘Mindwarp’ had this scene where this eleven year old boy who you cared about was forced into this meat grinder, he screamed right up to the point where he was turned into ground human sirloin. See, the film was set in a Mad Max-y type future, and this colony’s food supply was sort of short…and…well..there you go.

  15. Pick a scene from “Saw”, that should do it… (btw, anyone see the new collectable DVD package? There’s a reddish liquid in the plastic cover …)

    The best Alien ripoff ever made, 1985’s “Creature” directed by William Malone, has a scene where the slimy bug monster chews the head of a scientist, like a mantis on a roach dinner. That was killer in 85.

    ‘Alien’ chestburster has been mentioned, but I got that beat. Say hello to my lit’l friend, folks: The chainsaw and the bathtub in Brian DePalma’s ‘Scarface’.

  16. The knife fight death scene in Saving Private Ryan. The German officer shushing the American one as he pushes the knife into his belly gave me chills like none other in cinematic history.

  17. The meathook scene in tTCM had the same effect on me– it disturbs me even to be reminded of it. The “Lust” death in Se7en is certainly in the same category. But I have to say that Martin Scorcese takes the cake with the baseball bat clubbing of Joe Pesci’s character in Casino (with his little brother killed before his eyes as a prelude).

    Carl Edwards

  18. The Zapruder Film: the real footage of Kennedy shooted as it appears in Oliver Stone´s brilliant JFK.

    The Alien/John Hurt one should be on any list, I agree with that! The first time you see it… yuuuK!!!

  19. I agree with the chest busting scene in Alien. There was also that guy whose head exploded in Scanners, and then there was also ‘Passion of the Christ’, which to me felt like watching 2 hours of torture.

  20. I think the worst deaths are the ones where they don’t show everything, and leave it up to your imagination. A few of the worst ones though: The “curbing” in American History X (that’s one that turns my stomach every time), the Lust death from Seven, and not truly gruesome in any sense, but one of the most moving deaths was in SLC Punk. That’s one of those things where I almost break down crying every time.

  21. The most scary death scene i would have to say would be from either return of the living dead or from texas chainsaw massacre 2. both were extremly gruesome movies and deserve mentioning.

  22. Growing up the John Hurt’s death in Alien always disturbed me – he’s doing just fine joking around at dinner with everyone and then *gag* *convulse* *vomit* *chest crack* SURPRISE! (it was spoofed nicely in Spaceballs – but still that kinda freaked me out too)

    The other one growing up that always bothered me was when the bad guy got it on the toilet in one of the Ghoulies movies…

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