31 Movie Scenes That Changed Film History

Oh yeah! I get to talk about movie history that I, personally, was a part of!

So strap on your boots, movie fans, 'cause we're going to talk influential movie scenes!

Heather's Final Moments


This scene from The Blair Witch Project is so iconic, it's been parodied countless times.

It struck fear into the hearts of audiences worldwide and started the whole "found footage" trend we saw in the late 2000s and early 2010s.

The Opening From *Up*

Possibly one of the best and worst openings from a movie of all time, this scene will give you hope for a better life and then rip it all away in one swoop.

Honestly, I hardly even remember the rest of the movie.

Gollum And Smeagol Talk


This is one of the most iconic scenes of the entire trilogy and really set up Andy Serkis as an actor for the rest of his career.

The back and forth between the two personalities would be replicated again and again over time.

"You Shall Not Pass!"

This scene definitely goes down in history because it was not only part of a sacrifice, but would be referenced in movies, TV shows, and our day-to-day life for years to come.

The Avengers Assemble

The Avengers changed the movie industry. People figured out that, not only did they want movies about heroes, but also a huge assemble scene where the heroes come together.

The Antihero We Love And Hate

Christian Bale's role in American Psycho changed what people wanted out of characters.

But the scene that changed the history of film and characters is when he uses his charm and vibrant energy in his famous murder scene.

The First 7 Minutes And 50 Seconds Of *Superbad*


While Superbad is the best movie of all time, it's the opening that really hits it out of the park.

The fast-paced set-up and comedic timing would be used in future comedy movies.

Neo Dodges Bullets


Tell me, dear reader, which movie has been parodied more times than you can count over the last couple of years?

If you said anything but The Matrix, specifically this scene, then you are wrong.

I See Dead People

This movie, heck, this line is what launched M. Night Shyamalan's career and it is a scene that anyone born in the '90s remembers with both fondness and terror.

Good on you, Haley Joel Osment.

Hans Landa's Opening Scene


It's intense. That's the only word I can use for this scene in Inglourious Basterds. It's one of the most intense moments I've seen put to film in the last 20 years.

Thank you to Christoph Waltz for the performance.

Borat Runs Through The Hotel Naked


Funnily enough, this was the only shot from that scene I could get that was censored.

However, it's the climax of the movie and the one scene everyone remembers...except maybe the rodeo scene.

"I Am Iron Man."

While it may not have influenced a lot of people (that we know of, anyway), this iconic scene definitely is one of the most talked-about scenes ever.

Tony Stark revealing his superhero nature made an entire theater gasp and is still a fan-favorite scene.

The *Fight Club* Ending


The song "Where Is My Mind" by The Pixies was made for this scene. This scene was made for "Where is my mind." One cannot exist without the other.

Oh, and the visuals are sick.

The Chosen One


While this has been done in a ton of movies, it's perhaps most influential in Star Wars: Episode III—Revenge of the Sith.

The tragedy of the mentor versus the chosen student not only replicated itself later in this universe but in many other movie universes.

Harry Summons The Patronus

The hero overcoming an obstacle and saving a life was replicated before this moment and certainly after.

But as Harry Potter became a beloved global franchise, this scene from Prisoner of Azkaban would be remembered forever amongst fans.


Universal Studios

In Children of Men, there is a huge climactic ambush where all the characters are involved. It sets hearts racing.

It was that scene that would be replicated in some form again and again as movies continued to get made.

Edward Cullen's Entrance

You might hate it, but it's true. Twilight launched an entirely new part of the film industry: turning fantasy teen novels into movies.

The male love interest getting a dramatic opening scene would be replicated time and time again.

*The Notebook*'s Rain Kiss


Alright fine, there's a kissing scene a little more iconic than Spider-Man and Mary Jane.

Of course, this scene where Noah and Allie kiss in the rain will stick in the minds of people who want to cry everywhere.

Spider-Man And Mary Jane Kiss Upside Down


Spider-Man has probably the second most iconic kiss scene after The Notebook.

It has been parodied on several occasions and has forever heightened our own expectations.

The *40-Year-Old Virgin* Chest Waxing Scene


"Ahhhh, Kelly Clarkson!"

Any man who has actually tried waxing can attest to Steve Carell's feelings in this iconic scene that cemented his career, as well as started up Seth Rogen's a little bit.

*Scream*'s Cold Open


The opening scene where Drew Barrymore had to face off with the killer definitely started an evolution with movies.

Especially when it came to making movies about teens and marketing movies for them.

"I'm The King Of The World"

There are a lot of things about Titanic that make it one of the most important films ever.

But Jack yelling "I'm the king of the world" on the ship would be referenced for years to come, and still today.

Storming The Beach

DreamWorks Pictures

Saving Private Ryan is one of the most influential movies about war that has ever been made.

It inspired all war movies that came after to do an iconic storming of the beach when applicable (which was often).

Entering *The Royal Tenenbaums*

Touchstone Pictures

Gwyneth Paltrow's slow-motion walk with a beautiful song playing in the background definitely changed a lot for movies.

That kind of presentation and style would be mimicked over and over again. People love a slow-motion walk.

The Avengers Assemble... Again

Avengers: Endgame definitely made history in a lot of ways, but the scene where all the heroes work together is definitely one of the most iconic.

It was the first time Captain America actually said, "Avengers, assemble."

"I Wish I Knew How To Quit You"

Brokeback Mountain as a movie made history for featuring gay characters as the main subject point.

But it was the deliverance of "I wish I knew how to quit you" that made audiences realize Hollywood was moving in the right direction.

Post-Credit Scene


Iron Man did a lot for superhero movies and movies in general.

Like the sudden need for a post-credit scene. They are used often now to set up sequels or reveal Easter eggs.

"The Hero Gotham Deserves"


This line from The Dark Knight would set a precedence for Batman movies and hero movies in general.

The hero didn't always have to be perfect, but they had to be someone the city would need.

"To Infinity And Beyond!"

Toy Story is one of the most iconic cartoons and Disney movies of all time.

It is referenced constantly and, even still in Disney, remains one of their most iconic scenes.

"Luke, I Am Your Father."

In what is probably the most iconic scene of all time in Star Wars history, this line was said.

Let's face it: we have all said it too once in our lives.

*The Sound Of Music*'s Opening Scene

"The hills are alive with the sound of music," is one of the most iconic movie lines ever to be said.

It showed people how to set the stage of a movie, and made us all want to go on a hill and sing the same song.