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Top 10 Scenes Where the Villain Saves the Hero

VO: Phoebe de Jeu WRITTEN BY: Owen Maxwell

They may be villains, but they still had a heart. Or at least an agenda! For this list, we’re looking at scenes in which big screen baddies saved the heroes, whether they be misunderstood villains like Roy Batty in “Blade Runner” (1982), temporary allies such as Thresh in "The Hunger Games" (2012), or the devil himself, as in “South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut” (1999). What’s YOUR favorite movie villain from our picks? Let us know in the comments!

Check out the voting page for this list and add your picks: https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top%20Ten%20Scenes%20Where%20The%20Villain%20Saves%20the%20Hero Special thanks to our user MikeMJPMUNCH2 for suggesting this idea!


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Script written by Owen Maxwell

Top 10 Scenes Where the Villain Saves the Hero

Who says that being one of the bad guys means that you can’t have a heart? Welcome to WatchMojo and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 Movie Scenes Where The Villain Saves The Hero.

For this list, we're looking at characters considered big screen baddies or that those who share villainous traits that did a good deed. We're basing our picks on a mix of danger, personal sacrifice and the circumstances that made each baddie help the hero. These scenes are full of important surprises, so a SPOILER ALERT is in order.

#10: Thresh Kills Clove

"The Hunger Games" (2012)

When care packages appear at the Cornucopia, every tribute left in the Hunger Games comes sprinting towards them. After a near-miss with another tribute, Katniss makes a break for it and grabs her bag. As soon as she leaves however, Clove comes right at her and puts a knife to her throat. Instead of killing Katniss, Clove torments her over Rue's death. Clove's words get the best of her however when Thresh brutally kills her. Katniss is in shock, but Thresh insists he saved her as payback for Rue. The act of goodwill in the midst of a bloodbath make this moment both intense and moving.

#9: Satan

"South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut" (1999)

After Saddam Hussein and Satan musically reconcile their relationship, they come to the surface to take over earth. Armed with hellfire and demons, the evil pair quickly make humanity bow down to their power. Saddam, however, hogs all the glory for himself, upsetting Satan as he goes back on his promises. When Saddam is backed into a corner, he uses the same line on Cartman that he used to win Satan back. Broken-hearted, Satan finally stands up for himself and throws the dictator to a fiery grave. Between the bizarre power dynamic and Satan's personal triumph, this finale is oddly satisfying.

#8: Mr. White

"Casino Royale" (2006)

When Le Chiffre loses all of his investor's money in a game of poker, he is forced to take drastic measures. Tying Bond to a chair, Le Chiffre proceeds to torture him by whipping his (ahem…) family jewels. James doesn't break however, refusing to give Le Chiffre his bank password despite the agony. Bond even toys with his captor, asking him to scratch his itch, finding the strength to laugh. Bringing an unexpected but welcome end to the pain is the sudden arrival of Mr. White, who, after informing Le Chiffre that he has lost his trust, promptly shoots Bond’s torturer. The utillitarian Mr. White might not be the savior Bond wants, but when tied to a chair, best not to be too picky.

#7: Batty Saves Deckard

"Blade Runner" (1982)

Taking revenge for his fallen comrades, replicant Roy Batty chases Deckard through a building in a game of cat and mouse. Batty terrifies Deckard throughout the hunt, even punching through a wall to break some of Deckard’s fingers. Unable to shoot, Deckard jumps off a rooftop as he tries to escape from Batty. Hanging from a beam, Deckard stares in fear as Batty watches him struggle to survive. Right as Deckard falls however, Batty grabs and lifts him to safety. Having instilled in Deckard the same fear that all replicants feel, Batty surprisingly spares his life as a lesson in power, responsibility and compassion.

#6: Khan Fights Klingons

"Star Trek Into Darkness" (2013)

When the hostile Klingons turn on the crew of the Enterprise, almost killing Uhura, a lone gunman comes to the rescue. With the help of the very man they were pursuing, John Harrison, the crew of the Enterprise slowly gain the upper hand. Harrison shoots down Klingon soldiers and even a ship, easily overpowering all those who dare oppose him. Of course, given his terrorist activity, his decision to fight the Klingons doesn't make sense at first. While it turns out that Harrison is in fact Khan, and that he only rescued them to save his frozen shipmates, the fact remains that Kirk, Uhura and Spock wouldn't have survived without his help.

#5: Magneto Holds the Blackbird

"X2" (2003)

On their way back to Xavier's mansion, the iconic X-men aircraft is tailed by a swarm of jets. Storm's tornadoes eventually get rid of the fighters, but not before a few missiles are fired off, and while Jean Grey manages to knock out one rocket, the Blackbird is ultimately hit by a second one. As the ship hurtles towards the ground, Rogue is sucked out of the X-jet - only surviving thanks to Nightcrawler’s quick-thinking. Even so, the X-Men are hurtling towards certain doom when the Blackbird suddenly repairs itself. Their hero? Magneto, who then also stops the jet from crashing. Though he saves his enemies in the name of an alliance, Magneto still can’t help but make a joke at their expense.

#4: Vincent Saves Max

"Collateral" (2004)

In this neo-noir action thriller, hitman Vincent forces Max to drive him around to his assassinations, tying his hands to the wheel at their second stop of the night. Yelling for help, Max calls over some thugs who attempt to rob him. The men take Max's wallet and Vincent's briefcase, unaware of who they're messing with. Vincent returns just in time, hollering to get his briefcase back. Just when it seems like Vincent might be in trouble, he guns down the thieves like it's nothing. Since losing the briefcase would've likely gotten Max killed, Max is arguably saved from Vincent by Vincent.

#3: May Day's Sacrifice

"A View to a Kill" (1985)

As part of his plot to flood Silicon Valley, Bond villain Max Zorin plants a bomb in a mine along several fault lines. Zorin's partner and henchwoman May Day guards the mine, only to be trapped with James Bond when Zorin collapses the tunnels. Betrayed and in danger, May Day decides to help James remove the bomb as revenge. When their handcar's brake malfunctions, May Day sacrifices herself by riding out with the bomb to make sure it detonates safely. Foiling Zorin's plan, May Day is proof of just how dangerous a woman's scorn can be.

#2: Bucky Barnes Saves Captain America

"Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (2014)

Even while the two trade blows, Captain America refuses to give up on his old friend Bucky Barnes. Bucky, for his part, can't shake his conditioning or his anger and continues to attack until Steve falls into the Potomac River. Unconscious from the brawl, Captain America sinks quickly and appears to drown. Just when Steve seems as good as dead however, a metallic hands comes through the water to save him. In a move that proves the real Bucky Barnes is still in there, The Winter Soldier drags Steve from the river before walking away. Not only does Steve live to fight again, but he gets further reason to believe in his friend.

Before we get to our top pick, here are a few surprisingly honorable mentions:

Victor Creed / Sabretooth Saves Wolverine

"X-Men Origins: Wolverine" (2009)

Doctor Octopus Helps Peter

"Spider-Man 2" (2004)

#1: Darth Vader Saves Luke Skywalker

"Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi" (1983)

In this iconic scene, Luke defeats his father, Darth Vader. Looking a the fallen sith lord’s severed hand and his own robotic appendage, he finds himself at a crossroads. The Emperor encourages him to give in to his dark impulses and finish the job, but Luke ultimately denounces the Dark side. Disappointed, the Emperor tortures his would-be new apprentice. As Luke screams in pain, Vader can't help but be moved by his son's suffering. Turning on his Sith master, Vader throws The Emperor to his death, taking the brunt of the electric shock in the process. Vader's sacrifice, coupled with his character shift, combine to make this a powerful and moving moment, not just between father and son, but hero and villain as well.


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