Top 10 Movie Suicides

Script written by Sean Harris. There's an inevitable shock-factor to a suicide scene, but some movies go above and beyond! These are the suicide scenes in which the fatal event is fully acted out – failed attempts and last minute preventions do not count. Also, we're sticking with suicides by organic beings only. And, as you may have guessed, there are major spoilers ahead so SPOILER ALERT. Special thanks to our users Chester Vargas, mudflapmannacho, James Kerslake, Mr.Wrolnick, Soupzanimations, AdoreSinging394%, for submitting the idea on our Suggest Page at WatchMojo.comSuggest
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Script written by Sean Harris.

Top 10 Movie Suicides


There’s an inevitable shock-factor to a suicide scene, but some movies go above and beyond! Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 movie suicides.

For this list, we’ve looked at suicide scenes in which the fatal event is fully acted out – failed attempts and last minute preventions do not count. Also, we’re sticking with suicides by organic beings only. And, as you may have guessed, there are major spoilers ahead so SPOILER ALERT.

#10: “Little” Bill Thompson
“Boogie Nights” (1997)

We start our countdown with an altogether different one. It’s New Year’s Eve at Jack Horner’s house, and January’s gonna start with a bang – or three bangs to be precise! Little Bill married a porn-star, but he couldn’t satisfy her sexual thirst – so she frequently copulated with other men (often in public). For Bill, this New Year’s is one cuckold too many, though – he shoots him, he shoots her, and then he shoots himself – and his final expression is entirely world-weary!

#9: Father Damien Karras
“The Exorcist” (1973)

A suicide for the very greater good, Father Karras has seen just about enough of life on Earth when he decides to end his own. Regan, or more specifically Pazuzu, has created all types of hell from her bed, and Karras knows it has to stop. Screaming at the demon to ‘take’ him instead of the girl, Pazuzu obliges and the devil flashes through the father’s eyes. He’s granted one last second of sanity though – the second in which he jumps through the window!

#8: The Lisbon Sisters
“The Virgin Suicides” (1999)

When you’re thinking movie suicides, this film might be a first port of call. The Lisbon sisters are as odd as they are attractive – and for the boys in their neighborhood they’re highly sought-after sweethearts. When they visit the Lisbon house and find all of the girls in various states of suicide, however, their mysterious nature is cancelled out by misery. The variety of death, and the loneliness of it, is clear – this is one haunting movie moment.

#7: Brooks Hatlen
“The Shawshank Redemption” (1994)

Though this movie has two notable suicides, we’re paying our condolences to Brooks over the Warden, because he took the coward’s way out. Brooks’ death scene, on the other hand, is heartbreaking from start-to-finish. The old man says goodbye to his pet, shakes the officers’ hands, then he heads out into a world where he doesn’t belong. We hope our worst suspicions don’t turn out to be true – but they do! He hangs himself from the beam on which he carved his last message – it’s shocking, and seriously sad.

#6: Young Joe
“Looper” (2012)

An atmospheric scene in which the younger Joe sees his older self, the sound of the train mimics the beating of our hearts. Joe pieces the jigsaw together, and then ‘we see it’ just as he does. His life is a circle, and he needs to break it – and a shotgun wound does the job quite effectively! Bruce Willis is confused – his face reads like a lifetime never led – but it all makes sense to us, and it’s a stand-out scene!

#5: Ben Sanderson
“Leaving Las Vegas” (1995)

Our next cinematic suicide is particularly drawn out. Ben Sanderson is an unrelenting alcoholic, and he never wants to be anything else! And, after losing his family and his job, he drinks with only one direction in mind – his own death. Ben plays out his last moments uncontrollably jerking on a bed, inside a darkened room, comforted by the woman he loves – we all wish that he could’ve change, but realize that he couldn’t. And Sera’s closing summary is devastatingly bleak, but all too true!

#4: Ellen Ripley
“Alien 3” (1992)

Lieutenant Ellen Ripley’s life was an eventful one: she had the uncanny ability to survive alien massacre after alien massacre, when everybody else lay disfigured or dead. But with an Alien queen growing inside of her very body, she realizes her time is up. The queen must die to save humanity, and she must be killed in the process. Ripley’s slow motion fall into her molten resting place is both emotional and epic. But it wouldn’t be complete without a chestbursting alien to seal her fate.

#3: Romeo + Juliet
“Romeo + Juliet” (1996)

The majority of us are aware of how this Shakespearean tale unfolds, before we even press the play button. But in Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 adaptation, the double death scene is as powerful as it’s ever been! As Romeo drinks from the phial we’re still hoping that Juliet will wake up in time to save her love – and she almost does. Almost. That split-second where the two star-crossed lovers lock eyes before their inevitable demise is tragedy of the highest order and a timeless tale for the ages!

#2: Pvt. Leonard “Gomer Pyle” Lawrence
“Full Metal Jacket” (1987)

Every man has his breaking point, and this is Private Pyle’s! In classic Kubrick fashion, the action takes place inside a bathroom: it’s silent, dark and cold-looking – and there’s absolutely nothing to distract viewer attention away from Pyle’s rifle. It’s unclear what the soldier’s intentions are, but when he sits back down onto the latrine, we – like Joker – realize just too late: Pyle means to take his own life, but he’s not going out alone. The scene’s four-minutes long, but we hold our breath for its entirety!

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- Neil Perry “Dead Poets Society” (1989)
- Max Renn “Videodrome” (1983)
- The Predator “Predator” (1987)
- John Hartigan “Sin City” (2005)

#1: Thelma & Louise
“Thelma & Louise” (1991)

As our anti-heroes sit in their 1966 Ford Thunderbird, the history between them is palpable – even if most of it was written within the last week of their lives! Cornered quite literally between rocks and a hard place, the only choice that both women can reason with is to ‘keep going’. Tied to the road as they had been all film, they refuse to let it end. Holding hands as they drive over the edge – it’s an awful, but appropriate way for these ladies to go.

Do you agree with our list? Which movie suicide did we skip? For more tragic Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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