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The Top Ten movie action sequences


“I might fall from a tall building,
I might roll a brand new car.
‘Cause I’m the unknown stuntman that made Redford such a star.”

Lee Majors – “The Unknown Stuntman”

The movie equivalent of the musical chorus is the action sequence. It is the part of the film that we, the audience, will remember the most. It is the main reason we spend our money for a ticket. It may come as a shock to some, but there was some great stunt work in Hollywood long before the advent of CGI, and green screens. 

Stuntmen and stuntwomen are the most unsung heroes of Hollywood. Some might argue it’s the key grips, but risking your live and placing your body in harm’s way is much more dangerous than holding a boom mike. So whether it’s a car chase, gun fight, or aerial dogfight, the action sequences are some of the most memorable and iconic scenes in movie history.

So let’s cut to the chase.

The Top Ten movie action sequences

Keith’s List

Movie (year) – Scene

  • 10. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen (2009) – Optimus Prime’s death
  • 9. Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001) – opening scene
  • 8. The Matrix Reloaded (2003) – the backyard fight
  • 7. The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) – Battle of Helm’s Deep
  • 6. Superman Returns (2006) – Air Force 1 scene
  • 5. Robocop (1987) – Robocop’s revenge rampage
  • 4. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014) – elevator fight
  • 3. Star Wars (1977) – the Death Star battle
  • 2. Spider-Man 2 (2004) – runaway train
  • 1. Batman Begins (2005) – the Batmobile car chase

My List

Movie (year) – Scene

  • 10. Ronin (1998) – Paris car chase
  • 9. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) – opening scene
  • 8. Saving Private Ryan (1998) – D-Day
  • 7. Die Hard (1988) – John McClane jumping through the window
  • 6. Kill Bill Vol 1 (2003) – The Bride vs The Crazy 88
  • 5. The Matrix Reloaded (2003) – car chase
  • 4. Star Wars (1977) – Death Star battle
  • 3. The Raid 2 (2014) – car chase
  • 2. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002) – Battle of Helm’s Deep
  • 1. The Matrix (1999) – gunfight in the lobby

Honorable mentions: The Blues Brothers (1980) – car chase; The Raid: Redemption (2011) – the entire movie; Aliens (1986) – Ripley in exosuit vs the Xenomorph; The Bourne Supremacy (2004) – car chase; Oldboy (2003) – extended-shot fight scene; North by Northwest (1959) – the crop duster; Ben-Hur (1959) – chariot race.

Next Podcast Unlimited List: The Top Ten fictional bands


2 thoughts on “The Top Ten movie action sequences

  1. I like your list a lot better, I’m so glad The Raid 2 was included… both of those films have incredible fight scenes.
    I’d also want to include Ip Man 1 & 2 for it’s great fight scenes, because Donnie Yen knows how it should be done 😛 Haha!


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