While horror movies are always violent and messy, some characters just get it worse. I mean, it’s one thing to be gutted and killed on the spot like most genre victims, but it’s another thing to suffer multiple wounds, fight your way through a majority of the film, and then be killed off anyway, as your efforts only prolonged your suffering. Nice try and all, but was it really worth getting all your limbs broken, an eye ripped out, and THEN your throat cut open? Gosh, if I ever have to die in a slasher movie, just make it quick and get it over with.
With that said, Remy and I would like to honor those characters who took their lumps, kept on fighting, and might have even been rewarded for their heroics. Since there’s something wildly uncomfortable about seeing women thrust into such violent scenarios though, I was hesitant to tackle this article – until Remy volunteered to split our picks by gender. Yes, that means I’ll be taking four male examples, and Remy will be listing four female examples. Don’t worry, I’m sure it will be extremely tasteful. *GULPS* *DRINKS WATER* *PULLS ON SHIRT COLLAR AND MAKES NERVOUS FACE*
Alright, let’s get to it!Next
Remy – Jessica Alba in The Killer Inside Me
First off, I need to preface my picks with the genuine thought that seeing woman get hurt pretty much makes the soul ache, no matter who you are. But we all also need to understand, that is exactly why horror movies USE females as heroes and victims. It gets an emotional reaction from us we just don’t feel when a 300 pound man is brutalized.
While this may hint at some greater sexism issues, I just wanted to get that out of the way before I start talking about The Killer Inside Me, which is filled with some of the most unsettling and realistic violence I have ever seen on film – and no moment captures that violence quite like Casey Affeck’s BRUTAL beatdown of Jessica Alba. My first thoughts were: I didn’t know she made movies like this (S&M and brutal violence), and my second thought was: When is he going to stop punching her face into raw hamburger meat. That scene pretty much made me ill. And imagine my surprise (SPOILER ALERT) when she appears later on in the movie. Ah, sociopaths in love. Story of my life.
Nato – Eric in Evil Dead (2013)
When thinking of beaten, battered, and bruised characters, the first character that comes to mind is Eric in Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead remake. Is that because it’s still fresh in my mind? Possibly. Is it also because this human pincushion should have bled out 24 times over before he actually does? Absolutely.
Let’s follow Eric’s punishing journey, shall we? First he slams his back against the toilet while backing away from Olivia, who then stabs him directly in the chest with a piece of broken mirror, followed by her syringe stabs that narrowly miss his eye. Enough to put anyone down, right? Well, not Eric! Up next is a possessed Natalie, who lands numerous shots on Eric with her nail gun, one of which pins his hand to his chest. But if that wasn’t enough, she then attacks with a crowbar, disfiguring his hand which he uses in an attempt to protect his body, but the wasted attempt doesn’t stop Natalie from getting some solid shots to the dome. Eric has to be done, right? WRONG! Guess who saves the day when Mia attempts to drown her brother David – ERIC! Subduing Mia with a sedative, Eric finally takes one final wound in the way of a boxcutter to the body, and he finally goes out in peace.
Then of course the prick bastard stabs David in the neck as a Deadite, fulfilling the prophecy as David kills both Eric and himself by shooting a gasoline container with his shotgun. So yeah, technically Eric is burned alive as well, after being dead, so technically he was burned, undead? Either way, Lou Taylor Pucci’s character acted like a freakin’ Tank from Left 4 Dead in Alvarez’s remake, laughing numerous times in Death’s face.Previous Next
Remy – Regan in The Exorcist
We all forget that, beneath that demon, there is just a little girl. A little girl whose body is being used as a sort of temporary home to a demon who has no regard for what he puts her body through. We see her crabwalk, we see her head spin, we see her getting tossed around, cut up and burnt. We see all this, and yet we breathe a sigh of relief when she comes back to her own body, forgetting for a moment that her body would have been destroyed from that whole scenario. The violence that happens to that small child in The Exorcist is brutality you wouldn’t wish on someone twice or thrice her age, yet she endures it all. Somehow.
Nato – Martin in Dead Snow
Another character that endures tremendous amounts of pain but keeps fighting, Martin also suffers psychological pain as he thinks he’s found a way to outsmart becoming a zombie, only to have bad luck kick him when he’s down.
In Dead Snow, a group of medical students go vacationing in a remote cabin on a snowy mountain, only to get the attention of some cursed Nazi zombies protecting some gold they stumble upon. Martin, one of the longest survivors of the film, ends up getting in an epic standoff between what appears to be the remaining group of zombies (along with his buddy Roy), slicing and dicing his way through them, only to be bitten at the last minute. Thinking he’s got a solution, he hacks off his arm with a chainsaw high enough to stop the spread of infection, and then cauterizes the wound. Brilliant! Then, out of nowhere, a zombie pops out of the snow and bites him square on the dick. With his spirits crushed and his manhood infected, Martin then looks up to see a whole new slew of zombies rise from the snow, ready for a second wave. Oh yeah, this is all after he accidentally kills one of his friends in the heat of battle.
“Well, fuck me, right?” That’s the only reaction I’d have.Previous Next
Remy – Sara from Inside
Okay, so you are a woman who lives alone, and you are pregnant, and it is Christmas eve. Last thing you think is that someone is going to attack you and try to take your baby out of your stomach – which is just what “the woman” from Inside does.
From the first few minutes these two interact, the character Sara receives constant abuse and violence. French films put their protagonists through absolute Hell (which is something you will see compounded upon in the next entry), and Inside is no exception. Oh, and to make matters worse, all the violence carries a much heavier impact because of the pure terror that stems from the simple fact that this is all happening to a woman who is mere days away from giving birth. Like, water can break at any minute kind of pregnant.
Nato – Jean Claude Segal in Feast III: The Happy Finish
I know most of you haven’t seen the deteriorated ending to John Gulager’s Feast series, and I can’t blame you, but for those die hard fans like me who stuck through until the bitterly sour end, you’ll remember the character Jean Claude Segal – and his horrid fate.
Showing up with the mantra of kicking ass and taking names, it isn’t too soon before our martial arts expert has his arm torn off by one of the monsters, and he’s forced to fight down one weapon. Then as the bartender attempts to cauterize his wound, he accidentally blows off Jean Claude’s other arm, rendering him useless except for some unbalanced roundhouse kicks. Making it through a majority more of the movie armless, he finally decides to sacrifice himself so the group can run ahead, kicking the crap out of as many infected townspeople/monsters as he can. Unfortunately for stumpy though, his legs only take him so far, and he’s brutally torn in half.
With a parody name like Jean Claude Segal, it’s no surprised he didn’t last long in the Feast universe, but hell, at least he went out like a champ.Previous Next
Remy – Anna from Martyrs
And the winner for the person who takes the most physical punishment in a film, yet still continues to fight on, inexplicably, is Anna from Martyrs. There is a nine minute stretch in this movie that is just her getting punched in the face by a massive hulk of a man, she gets fed slop, and is eventually flayed. Luckily, she talks to God, and even though she is planted somewhere between life and death, she realizes self actualization through her punishment, which is EXACTLY the reason I have a girl, bound and gagged, in my basement right now.
I want to bring her closer to God….
(Dammit! Remy made it so long without being too offensive!)
Mad Dog in The Raid: Redemption
Alright, since Remy took a non-horror pick with Alba, I’m going to cheat a little bit too and round out my list with Mad Dog from The Raid: Redemption. Sure, every main character goes through a pretty grueling action experience, but none were as brutally beaten as Mad Dog, mainly because he just wouldn’t die.
Again, while every single fight scene in Gareth Evans’ insta-classic was crafted with showmanship, skill, grace, and beauty, the three-way fight scene between Mad Dog, our hero Rama, and his brother Andi is nothing short of perfection – making it two against Mad Dog. What transpires is a 5:30 long fight scene that never stops for even a second, in which every character goes farther beyond the pain threshold than any man should. Looking specifically at Mad Dog though, he’s punched and kicked every which way, his head is slammed repeatedly against he concrete, he’s thrown around, slugged out, and then gets stabbed in the neck by a broken piece of tube lighting. With blood pouring out of his neck like a spout, Mad Dog CONTINUES TO FIGHT for about another minute, until he’s finally brought to the ground and finished off with a nice throat opening.
If Mad Dog didn’t take a wound to the neck, I’m not sure Rama and Andi would have walked out of this one alive.
Oh, if you’ve never seen the scene I’m talking about, do yourself a favor and check the clip below. Well, honestly, you should really watch the entire film, as it’s easily one of the best action movies since 2000, but if you’re too lazy to go find it, here’s just a taste:
Alright, so which brutally bashed characters did Remy and I miss? Any poor saps suffer worse thrashings than our selections?
*A special thanks to Remy for stepping in to guest write! Feel free to follow either of us on Twitter for even more insanity and updates:
Matt Donato Follow @DoNatoBomb
Remy Carreiro Follow @RemyCarreiro
Like what you read? Check out last week’s article where Remy and I talk about why slasher villains are always such tremendous cockblocks!Previous