#3. The Iron Giant -- The Giant
The Iron Giant tells the story of a boy named Hogarth (because that's what kids are named, right? Like goblin wizards?) befriending a huge, extremely dangerous yet innocent robot. When government officials find out about the huge robot roaming around the town of Rockwell, Maine, they rightfully get pretty worked up, thinking a Russian or alien invasion is upon them, and try to destroy it.
"It's not like we're using any of this shit on the Russians, anyway."
Hogarth manages to prove that the Giant is friendly as long as he's not attacked, but there's one douche bag who's determined to blow this bitch up, and he orders a nearby submarine to fire a missile at the Giant that's going to incinerate everything in sight. Of course, the problem with this is that at that moment, the Giant is hanging out in the middle of a town full of people, including all the military personnel.
Didn't really think that one through.
Then, in a moment so sad that it probably doomed the film's box office prospects, the Giant flies up into the air and lets the missile destroy him in order to save the town. Seriously, there's probably a Guinness World Record waiting out there for anyone who can watch this whole movie and not start bawling at least six times.
Wait a second ...
Remember that the reason the military wanted to destroy him was because when the Giant was threatened, he transformed into this:
We're seeing a minimum of five laser cannons on this bad boy, not including that spike on the top, which we can only assume is a top-notch espresso maker. So the Giant's loaded up with enough weapons to destroy a small nation, yet he flies right into the missile later on and lets it blow him up into itty-bitty pieces.
So why not just bust out your laser cannon and blow that missile up while it's still in the air? According to the movie, the Giant can activate his weapons only when he feels that there's a threat, which we're pretty sure a soul-crushing, city-destroying rocket qualifies as. Therefore, he should have been able to blow that thing up long before it got to him without getting himself destroyed in the process, and countless dudes wouldn't have all had to lie to their girlfriends about how it was our allergies acting up that was making our eyes water during the end of the movie.
No, seriously, your apartment's just really moldy.
#2. Enemy at the Gates -- Joseph Fiennes
Enemy at the Gates is about a sniper battle in the middle of World War II between Russian Jude Law and Nazi Ed Harris. That's basically all the awesome you need to know, but there is also a less awesome subplot about friends Jude Law and Joseph Fiennes fighting over the same girl.
Bros before hoes, man.
During the course of the movie, Fiennes tries to get Law court-martialed and accidentally gets a kid who was helping them spy on the Germans killed. He ends up feeling kind of shitty about both of these things. Near the end of the film he goes for a little redemption, which you can guess he does not survive.
Specifically, when Fiennes and Law go out together looking for the German sniper, Fiennes admits that he's been a pretty terrible friend and he wants to help Law out. As a final act of heroism and friendship, he offers to show Law "where the major is" by standing in front of a window and letting himself get shot to reveal the other sniper's position. And by shot, we mean in the head, right between the eyes.
"Did it work?"
Wait a second ...
This act totally fulfills its purpose in that Law manages to spot and kill the major. But ... if all he needed was for a head to poke out a window and get shot, then there were about 2 million bodies lying around with perfectly good heads. Why not prop one of those bastards up in front of the window?
Oh yeah, that could totally just be a propped-up dead guy.
It's not quite as heroic, but surely coming up with the awesome "lure him with a corpse" plan will get him some karma points, right?
#1. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring -- Gandalf
Gandalf kind of cheats the "dramatic death" thing by coming back in the second film of the series, but he clearly didn't know that when he chose to stay behind to fight the Balrog so the rest of the Fellowship could get away (though the Fellowship just stands there and watches the fight instead of actually getting away).
He's risking his life to buy us time! We'd better all stay and watch.
Actually, the Fellowship seems to have a good 30-second head start on the Balrog, as everyone else is up the stairs and almost out the door before they even notice Gandalf hanging out in the middle of the bridge waiting for the flaming death beast to arrive.
"Hey guys, watch me! This is going to be awesome. Hey guys! Are you watching? Guys?"
Gandalf's plan seems to consist entirely of "break bridge so YOU SHALL NOT PASS." He starts talking smack to the Balrog about what a badass wizard he is, again probably to give the not-running-away Fellowship time to leave, and when that doesn't make the monster back down, he cracks the bridge as the Balrog is crossing, causing it to fall into the dark chasm below, directly in front of him. The Balrog is so close, in fact, that it's able to grab him as it goes down, and bam, no more wizard protection for the Fellowship.
Leaving them with two tanks, ranged DPS, melee DPS and four midgets.
Wait a second ...
There was no reason Gandalf had to wait that long to break the bridge, or break it from the center like he did.
If he had crossed all the way, broken the bridge and then kept running before the Balrog caught up to them, they all would have been in the clear, and they wouldn't have lost their wizard for the better part of two movies. Or even if he did exactly what he did but then ran away, he would have been fine. Instead, he waited in the very center for as long as humanly possible before cracking that sucker, and then he just hung around as it fell, even though goblins were still shooting arrows at them from across the chasm.
He still could have "not passed" if you broke it from the other side, Gandalf.
Then again, maybe we can blame the Fellowship for this one. If they had run away like they were supposed to, maybe Gandalf wouldn't have felt the need to drag out this bridge-destroying thing for as long as possible and gotten himself temporarily killed.
Good work, douche bags.
For more fictional deaths that were head-scratchers, check out The 5 Most Easily Avoidable Movie Deaths. Or check out some real-life examples, in 6 People Who Died In Order To Prove A (Retarded) Point.
And stop by Linkstorm to see which columnist sacrificed himself for the benefit of all mankind. (Hint: It was none of them.)
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