Death Scenes

Death scenes. They can be long and drawn out …

Or short and surprising …

What kinds do you like?

What have been some of the most memorable death scenes you’ve read (or watched) and what made them that way?

15 thoughts on “Death Scenes

    1. I haven’t seen Executive Decision, but the death scene sounds appropriately sudden & shocking.

      The scene with Darth Vader is interesting because we go into that scene expecting *someone* to die, but not necessarily that person and certainly not in that way. I remember there was a scene like that in 24, where we are so worried that this girl who goes undercover is going to get killed, and then she ends up stabbing the guy instead.

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      1. I always remember Executive Decision because they played Steven Seagal out to be a big character in the trailers, but then he bites the dust pretty quickly in the movie.

        I watched the first season of 24. I like how fast it moved. Unrealistic, but exciting.

        I am all about a good, realistic plot. A quick death is okay with me if it is realistic.

        I hate all these superhero movies with their half hour long fight scenes at the end.

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      2. I was going to ask whether Seagal was the hero or villain when he got killed, but thought it would be a dumb question. I guess the answer is neither.

        I watched several seasons of 24 (with friends – we’d make an event of it), but I stopped when it became impossible to tell the hero from the bad guys. He was literally willing to do everything they did, and worse, but it was somehow heroic because it was in a good cause. Later, I read an article by a just-war theorist who said that 24 was basically an extended argument for torture. Not good.

        I am glad to hear your vote for quick, realistic deaths. More data points = better. Some of the deaths in my books are planned well in advance, some I try to avoid but can’t, others take even me by surprise. I have learned that whenever I do kill off a character, I have to be prepared to deal with the fallout.

        Have you heard what George RR Martin has said about killing off major characters early and often?

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      3. Seagal was more of a hero. He got sucked out closing the airlock so Kurt Russell’s character could live. It’s a good movie for a teenage boy, but to watch it again now…it’s pretty weak.

        I never heard what George had to say, but the reason I stopped watching Game of Thrones was I was tired of violence befalling the characters I liked.

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      4. Martin remembers when he first read Lord of the Rings. First Gandalf got killed, then Boromir, then (apparently) Frodo. Then the book ended, and he had to wait for the next one to come out. He remembers the effect these deaths had on him … namely, that “anyone can die.” He didn’t trust the world of the book to be a safe place. It raised the stakes. That is what he is trying to emulate in his writing. He might be overdoing it, though. From what I’ve heard, deaths of main characters in Game of Thrones are now no longer shocking but expected.

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      5. Sometimes killing a character is TOO out of character for that character. Know what I mean? John McClane in Die Hard, for example. He can’t be killed.
        Are you all caught up on the new Star Wars movies?

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      6. Yes. That’s the scene. No way is Han going to fall for that. He can read people too well. Maybe he wanted to die, but I presume it had more to do with Harrison Ford not wanting to do ten more Star Wars flicks.

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      7. I dunno. Probably he was blinded by his desire to win his son over, plus past experience winning people over. I myself didn’t know what Kylo Ren was going to do until he did it. Killing your own father in cold blood is pretty hard to come back from, even for a series that likes to redeem villains.

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      8. You’re probably right about the blinded by love angle. Personally, I had a feeling Han was toast once he stepped onto that gang plank.
        Oh well, Lucas already ruined the series in the 2000s and Disney is doing a number on it now.
        Nevertheless, I still keep watching the films, so I guess I’m just another sheep forking over my pathetic paper bills to the big machine.

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