Battle scenes are awesome. They're the best part of the movie, where all that built up tension gets released in an epic sequence. It's ten minutes of coordinated chaos where you don't know what characters will emerge alive or dead, or who will come out on top. Let's look at some of the best movies and television have to offer.
Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers - Battle of the Hornburg
So, this is the best battle scene ever made in cinematic history. Period.
The men of Rohan overcoming insurmountable odds to defeat Saruman's hoards is one of the most inspiring tales of the books as well as the movies. Every moment of this battle will have you gasping, right on the edge of your seat. It's probably been 15 years since I saw this for the first time, and I still can't get over how good it is.
Aragorn is amazing commanding the elves of Lothlorien on the Deeping Wall (which isn't consistent with the book, but I'll let it slide). Legolas and Gimli having an orc-killing contest in the middle of a fight for their lives is endearing and funny in a moment of insurmountable terror.
This battle does what Tolkien did best. It reminds you there's always light in the world, no matter how great the darkness may be.
I'd also like to remind you this was made in 2002. 2002. And this battle has not only stood the test of time, but has the CGI and effects to rival any film made in this decade. Peter Jackson nailed this.
GOT - The Battle of the Bastards
A lot of people think this surpassed Helms Deep as the best battle scene ever made. A lot of people are wrong. However, that shouldn't take away from the quality of this battle scene. It's awesome. And it was years in the making. We all wanted to see Ramsay Bolton get what was coming to him. I waited a solid four years for that dude to die, we all did.
This scene, as is the entirety of Game of Thrones, is extremely graphic. The blood and the dirt and the brutality is far more realistic towards how gruesome and despicable battle really was, and for that, this scene deserves a lot of credit.
While Season 8 didn't exactly give fans what they wanted, or at least this fan what he wanted, The Battle of the Bastards wrote a check it could cash. Unlike the Battle of Winterfell.
300 - First Battle Scene
300 was an awesome movie. Was it kind of corny? Yes. Were the fight scenes awesome? Absolutely.
The coordination of the Spartans, the way they just tear through the invading army like breadcrust, that part where Leonidas steps out just to kill like seven people in three steps? Gorgeous. The camera work, sound effects, lighting, all of it is just meant to look badass. And badass it is.
Spartacus - Final Battle
Stanley Kubrick pulled this off in 1960, because of course he did. The extras of this film were actually part of the Spanish army, which is why the battle formations look so realistic.
Those are all real soldiers, every single individual person you see. Which is insane. Obviously, the technology we have now didn't exist, with replication techniques to create massive armies, and CGI to create them as well. But he seriously went and got like 3,000 people. That's awesome.
Is it the best of all time? No. Is it remarkable for its time period? Absolutely.
Avengers Infinity War - The Battle of Wakanda
You want tension? Ok, how about the entire universe relies on your ability to keep billions of aliens from a tiny rock?
This movie cost like, a kajillion dollars and it made even more than that, so you know the fight scenes are going to come correct. Thor showing up and hitting everyone with lightning, Bruce Banner in the hulk suit tearing everyone up, Captain America getting a shield again, it was awesome. If only he aimed for the head...
The Hobbit - The Battle of the Five Armies
Ha, just kidding.
Lord of the Rings - The Battle of Pelennor Fields
When it comes to battle scenes, Lord of the Rings takes the cake. There are so many iconic moments in this battle. The Riders of Rohan screaming DEATH! as they charge into battle, willingly forfeiting their lives to save mankind. Eowyn slaying the Witch King ("I am no man"). Legolas climbing the oliphaunt. The death of Theoden. It was so cool, so sad, so meaningful. Far too often, battle scenes are nothing but a cathartic release to hold audience engagement, but Peter Jackson and Tolkien had the beautiful ability to make the battles mean something larger.
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