Top 10 Movie Shootouts

Script written by Max Lett. Round up your posse and be sure to pick a side. In this video, WatchMojo.com counts down our picks for the top 10 movie shootouts. For this list, we’re looking at gun battles involving two or more people, but we’re omitting military conflicts, standoffs and traditional western showdowns since we’ve already got you covered with Top 10 Western Movie Gunfights. Also, we should warn you, some of these are the final showdowns of their respective films, so a SPOILER ALERT is probably in order. Special thanks to our users Warriors9576, Rob Welch, Andy Roehl, carlostorres20101, JGarza22, Andrew A. Dennison, ramonacrawford, Mattyhull1, oliver rogers, TimeQueenOfRome, gamer2424, Alex DeLarge, Jonathan Hurley, Thomas Clarke, partyboy1091, isarge1234, Jonathan Umbach, Tools Gav, Philip Folta, matthewb627 and Jake Follensbee for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Script written by Max Lett.

Top 10 Movie Shootouts


Round up your posse and be sure to pick a side. Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 movie shootouts.

For this list, we’re looking at gun battles involving two or more people, but we’re omitting military conflicts, standoffs and traditional western showdowns since we’ve already got you covered with Top 10 Western Movie Gunfights. Also, we should warn you, some of these are the final showdowns of their respective films, so a Spoiler Alert is probably in order.

#10: Through the Ceiling
“The Boondock Saints” (1999)

After killing some Russian mobsters in self-defense, the MacManus brothers decide to go vigilante on their asses. The scene in question sees the boys snaking their way through air vents in order to drop in on their Russian prey. And drop in they do. The MacManus twins mercilessly gun down every man in the bunch – and like the good little Catholic boys they are, they never forget to say their prayers. But even with god on their side, they’re still surprised at their success.

#9: Victory Motel Shootout
“L.A. Confidential” (1997)

After being double-crossed by their own agency, agents Exley and White must fight off wave after wave of armed adversaries while holed up in a dilapidated motel. Moments of intense action are punctuated with excruciating moments of silence, as the two coppers await the inevitable. With a lot of luck and a little ingenuity, Exley and White manage to outwit their rivals and gain the upper hand. However, the victory comes at a cost, as both come out injured.

#8: The Stairway Shootout
“The Untouchables” (1987)

In a clear homage to Sergei Eisenstein’s “Battleship Potemkin,” a pram painstakingly makes its way up the agonizingly long stairs at Union Station, where Prohibition agent Elliot Ness is waiting to nab one of Al Capone’s accountants. But inevitably, bullets break the silence. In the ensuing crossfire, the stroller – baby and all – go tumbling down the stairs. Time slows to a crawl and tension is high as Ness tries to stay alive, catch the gangster and save the baby all at the same time.

#7: Candyland Massacre
“Django Unchained” (2012)

As it is for most Tarantino protagonists, payback is a long time coming for Django Freeman. This former slave is finally able to exact his revenge for his wife’s kidnapping when all his targets are conveniently placed in one, big, shoot-out-ready house. The showdown is stylish, gruesome and grittily realistic all at the same time, as man after man is felled, bullet wounds spout fountains of blood, corpses are used as shields and the walls of Candyland are painted red.

#6: Bar Shootout
“Desperado” (1995)

Talk about a pub crawl. This classic shootout pits Antonio Banderas against a bar full of gun-toting drunks. Triggers are pulled ineffectually in the El Mariachi’s direction as he expertly guns down patron-after-patron. There’s even a familiar face that makes the scene all the more fun. After Banderas dances along the bar like a drunken college girl, he uses a Cheech springboard to get his next trick. The shootout concludes with El Mariachi and his target attempting to shoot each other – with mixed results.

#5: Mindless Violence
“Hot Fuzz” (2007)

Turns out, being an idyllic, crime-free village in South West England isn’t as easy as it sounds: Sandford-Gloucestershire is actually controlled by a murderous group of seniors called the Neighborhood Watch Alliance, who are working for the “greater good.” Sergeant Nicholas Angel and his partner Danny then take the law into their own hands – which makes sense since they’re cops – and trigger a showdown against the NWA in the town square. The resulting shootout is action-packed, highly satisfying and overflowing with brilliant sendoff lines.

#4: Teahouse Shootout
“Hard Boiled” (1992)

Inspector “Tequila” Yuen and his partner are staking out a teahouse where gun-smuggling gangsters are about to make a deal. But, another member of the gang is primed and ready for an ambush. The result is a five-minute sequence where Tequila must plot a course through a heavy hail of bullets and John Woo’s trademark slo-mo birds, while taking down gangsters and trying to get his partner out alive. The final shot involves a ghostly Chow Yun-Fat avenging his friend.

#3: Compound Showdown
“Scarface” (1983)

This classic scene introduces everyone’s favorite little friend. Tony Montana’s compound is invaded by hordes of gun-toting enemies trying to end his reign as drug king. Tony deals with this intrusion the only way he knows how and manages to take out a good chunk of the intruders in the process. Miraculously, a hail of bullets to the neck and chest doesn’t seem to have any effect; but finally a shotgun blast right to the back brings this cocaine baron down.

#2: Lobby Shootout
“The Matrix” (1999)

The nefarious agent Smith has captured Morpheus and the only way to save him is to get through a lobby of heavily armed guards. Martial arts merges with good old fashion trigger-pulling action as Neo and Trinity flip, kick and blast their way through waves of deadly soldiers – all set to a techno-electro soundtrack. Oh and Physics? Screw physics, this is “The Matrix.” When the dust finally clears, the walls are crumbling, the body count is high, but our heroes are unscathed.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Brothel Shootout “Taxi Driver” (1976)
- Léon vs. NYPD “Léon: The Professional” (1994)
- Storm the Gates “Wanted” (2008)
- Puppy Shootout “Equilibrium” (2002)
- Taking Out the Terrorists “Die Hard” (1988)

#1: Run & Gun
“Heat” (1995)

When Lieutenant Vincent Hanna ambushes career criminal Neil McCauley and his gang as they attempt to escape a bank robbery, the ensuing gunfight lasts a beefy five-minutes and takes no prisoners. Thieves and policemen alike are brutally cut down in the crossfire on the crowded streets of Los Angeles, and Hanna himself even manages one helluva risky kill shot, before McCauley and his partner finally escape. This gritty and realistic scene will certainly get your heart pumping.

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite movie shootout? For more epic Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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