Favorite final girls.
In honor of Ms. Jill Schoelen's birthday I decided to list several of my all time favorite final girls. Now before you begin to read, remember I did leave some of the more popular choices out for a reason. Not that they don't deserve to be on this list, but I'm going to pick some of the lesser known gals who have kicked ass, and gone head to head with some of the film's most dangerous villains.
1) Stephanie - The Stepfather.
- The best moment is when Jerry, her crazy stepfather tries climbing up into the attic where she's hiding. I always loved the moment where she shoves the sled towards his head when he gets up there. Total bad ass moment.
2) Stretch - The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2
- A spunky adorable character full of energy. Thought she brought a whole new level to the final girl route. She thinks fast on her feet, and has a shrieking scream. Love that she basically has chainsaw sex with Leatherface in order to survive. Her little banter with L.G always broke my heart. Love her chainsaw dance at the end.
3) Maggie - Popcorn
- I love Jill (clearly since she makes the list twice.) Her character of Maggie aka Sara is great as the film's lead. I always loved how much she adores film, and is doing anything she can to solve the mystery of her own dreams, and figure out who she really is. Loved how heartbroken she is when the killer reveals who he actually is and why he's killing. The worst is when he explains his plot and she simply sighs, eyes filled with pity as she tells him it makes perfect sense. Gets me every time.
4) Nicole - Ghoulies II
- Nicole didn't bring much to the movie, but was a cute love interest to the dreamy Damon Martin. I liked Nicole because she was an older woman with a past, and ended up facing her own fear of heights in order to help. Instead of just standing back and screaming she actually helps. Plus her reaction when she first sees the giant ghoulie is priceless.
5) Wendy- Final Destination
- I always loved the third film in the series. I thought Wendy was a great addition, and I really wish they could have somehow continued with her in the weaker installments that followed. What makes Wendy different is that she has a boyfriend in the beginning who she loses. She's Ms. Perfect who likes having control and all of this is destroyed in a matter of seconds. Not only is this actress beautiful, but her terrified big brown eyes capture what it's really like to be scared out of your mind. Another huge reason why I can't wait to finally getting around to see 10 Cloverfield Lane.
6) Andrea - Amityville 1992
- A final girl with a complicated past. I liked how Andrea was actually the dad's ex girlfriend. How she used to live in the house the film takes place in, and is currently trying her hardest to remove herself from this toxic relationship she constantly finds herself re-visiting. Trying to go back to school, and dating someone else, we see how messed up things are about her trying to admit that she's better off without this family. I love her relationship best with the film's teenagers Lisa and Rusty. Also she kicks total ass in the end. Love her freak out when she sees the clock.
7) Sarah - Waxwork
- As much as I love the film's sequel, it's the original Sarah played by the stunning Deborah Foreman that wins my heart. Sarah plays the shy good girl that actually has a taste for the wild side. I love her crush on Mark (who can blame her) and how even when he basically offers himself to her she turns him down. A complicated lead who steps up and kicks ass. I love the scene of her stepping through the Waxwork with Mark leaving that twisted little sex fantasy behind.
8) Karen - Blood Rage
- I like Karen because she actually has some balls. Some might ask why didn't she just run away from the condo development or call the police? Putting all of that aside I like how she does the right thing in scooping up the baby who's been left in the apartment after it's mother was murdered and fights back against the killer.
9) Nancy - A Nightmare On Elm Street 1&2
- The most popular on the list, I love Nancy. She lived a tragic life, and had a tragic death. In both part 1 and 3 she stole the show. Beautiful, tough, and a survivor. Between dealing with her parent's divorce, her mother's drinking problem, finding the truth out about being molested and losing a sibling, and of course watching her friends get murdered one by one, she faced to fight back completely alone, doing everything she can to prove she isn't crazy. In part 3 she sees the same exact thing happening to other young teens she gives her life up to save them. Her death was one of the most heartbreaking moments in the whole series. Nothing made me happier in New Nightmare when Heather slowly transformed into Nancy and ran back into the original house.
10) Brenda - The Hills Have Eyes
- Brenda is sorta a package deal. I feel she was stronger with her twin brother Bobby but hey, who's counting. Sure she's annoying with screaming her brother's name at the top of her lungs during the end of the movie, but at least she fought back with him. This was after being raped, and being attacked, losing both her older sister, and parents just hours before. Love how while one of the men are attacking her brother she finally builds up the courage and attacks.
11) Karen - The Howling
- Played by the ever so lovely Dee Wallace Stone, Karen is not only beautiful, but a survivor. For those who have red the novel, Karen is actually attacked and raped, causing her to have a miscarriage. In the film, she's attacked by a serial killer and suffers PSD. I love her utter heartbreak when she finally catches on what her husband is cheating on her, and how hard she fights back at the end and once she knows it's too late for her, her final wishes are for the world to know about the species that attacked and destroyed her. Also, she makes a pretty adorable werewolf.
12) Kirsty - Hellraiser 1 &2
- I love Kirsty, she kicks total ass in both Hellraiser films. She kicks ass, and legit goes to Hell and back to stop her evil step-mother. By only problem with her is she didn't find the ever so dashing Oliver Parker charming when he hit on her in the first movie. What? Only me?
13) Lori - Nightbreed
- A woman who risks her life to live among the monsters and creatures of the world should really tell you something about true love. Lori is a fighter, and never once gives up on Boone, even after he's gunned down and framed as a killer. I love how she walks through the underground world curious instead of scared. As much as I hate the director's cut of this movie (I know, I know...) I do like how she would rather become a monster than to be separated by Boone again. The writer of Twilight should have taken note of these two.
14) Sam and Regina - Night Of The Comet.
- I adore these two. Army brats who have no problem standing up to their bitch of a step-mother, screw around, and spend the end of the world shopping. What makes them even cooler is the fact that they know about machine guns as much as they do about fashion.
15) Erin - You're Next
- I'll never forget by late mother telling me she loved a female lead that just didn't fall down and scream. She loved seeing somebody that would turn around, fight back, and not stop until the killer was dead. I'm sure she would have loved Erin in You're Next. Between her high energy, adorable accent, and bad ass attitude, she quickly takes charge and makes the villains in this movie wish they didn't attack that weekend with her visiting. I mean come on, she throws herself out of a window in order to escape the killer. Reminded me of Trish from The Final Chapter.
16) Nancy - The Final Girls
- This character broke my heart, but won it at the same time. I don't think there was more of a beautiful scene than Nancy dancing to Betty Davis Eyes during the lighting storm. Her blowing a kiss to her daughter gets me every time...
17) Justine - The Green Inferno
- A rich college student who wants to prove that she actually wants to make a difference but sadly does so with the wrong people. Justine got me the moment she told that kid in the plane to fuck off. Not only is she stunning, she was played to actually seem like a really good person who's caught in the worst possible place on the planet. Between her trying everything she can to prove to the village people that they aren't there to harm them, to her comforting her friends, she steals the show with those giant green eyes of hers. The best moment is when she gives a total "Fuck you." look to one of the film's biggest assholes. I wanted to start clapping in the audience when I first saw that. Total bad ass bitch moment.
18) Catherine - Prince Of Darkness
- Mysterious, complicated, and strong. Catherine doesn't allow herself to be the weak love interest during the movie. The highlight for her of course comes at the very end when she sees the devil slowly coming through a mirror which is serving as a gateway to this world. Knowing that there's nobody to help her, the look of utter defeat overcomes her before she gives up her life and runs straight towards the mirror, shoving the devil back. Moments later the mirror is destroyed and the haunting image of Catherine trapped, almost as if she's underwater, reaching towards the light as it goes into darkness will forever stay with me as one of the film's most beautiful but haunting images ever.
19) Leigh - Christine
- Yeah she's more of a bad ass in the novel, but I still couldn't help but love her in the movie. A poor innocent girl trapped in a twisted love triangle. Or should I say square? There's Arnie, her boyfriend who's slowly becoming possessed by his killer car, Dennis, the handsome best friend, and of course Christine who will do anything to make sure she doesn't cause any trouble for Arnie and her.
20) Barbara - Night Of The Living Dead (1990)
- Last, but not least. The updated version of Barbara wins the list in the brilliant remake of the cult classic Night Of The Living Dead. I love that instead of how she was originally shown as slipping into a useless shell, she's one of the only people with a steady head on her shoulders. She's the voice of reason, and doesn't have time for any bullshit. Between being the only one who notices they should just run for it before it's too late, proves that these people are actually dead, or the look of complete defeat when she knows she has to leave Ben gets me every time. I love her scream as she walks through the field, past all the zombies, one even being little girl. How at the end she's in total bad ass mode, and even watches her poor friend now transformed shot dead, but not before locking eyes with him. The film's greatest moment is when she shoots that bastard Cooper right between the eyes before muttering to the other men "There's another one for the fire." Awesome.
So which ones did I leave out? Who are your favorite final girls and why?