I won't spoil things for those of you who haven't seen it yet, but there's a little twist to one of the kills in Final Destination 5 in which a character's eyeball is destroyed in a way that's hilarious in its suddenness. And because I can be a pretty sick bastard sometimes, this got me thinking about the many other great eye mutilation scenes I've witnessed in films. So I started compiling a list. In doing so, what surprised me was the sheer number of ways in which eyeballs have been destroyed by filmmakers. (After all, since imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, you'd think there would be more folks ripping each other off out there.) You can see what I'm talking about after the jump, when I pick the top 5 eyeball mutilations in movie history.
Un Chien Andalou
Salvador Dali and Luis Bunuel's pioneering French experimental short not only paved the way for all the avant-garde filmmakers who followed them, it also gave us a moment so powerful that it's still, over eighty years later, disturbing as hell. I don't even like to have a razor blade near my skin let alone my eye….
Alfred Hitchcock's 1963 nature-run-amuck thriller contained the first bit of on-screen eye-gore I ever saw. And it still freaks me out. Not because of the violence you see on screen, but – in classic Hitchcock fashion – because of what you don't see.
This 1979 Italian undead extravaganza from Lucio Fulci (still my favorite of the director's films) contains what could be the best eyeball mutilation on this list. There's something almost tender, almost loving in the way that Fulci shoots this piercing. Yet at the same time something kind of hilarious. The mere fact that it holds its own in a movie that also features a zombie fighting a shark speaks to its quality.
This clip really begins around the 1:30 mark. Prodigal son Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) confronts his maker Dr. Tyrell (Joe Turkel), and, after planting a kiss on his lips, proceeds to gouge his eyes out of his skull. Ridley Scott never shied away from gore (see Alien), and that coupled with the emotion of the Vangelis score as it builds to a crescendo makes this scene unforgettable.
Kill Bill: Volume 2
Though I prefer Volume 1 of Kill Bill to its sentimental, less action-oriented follow-up, I still love the duel between Uma Thurman's Bride and Daryl Hannah's hissably villainous Elle Driver. And its denouemont, in which the Bride casually obliterates Elle's one good eye, is gloriously repulsive in its release of vitreous humour.