A movie's fight scene is usually a back-and-forth affair to keep the audience engaged. Sometimes, however, fights are so one-sided that it's no contest. Yet we can't look away from what's happening on the screen.
Here are 15 of the most one-sided fights we've seen in a movie.
1. Cliff Booth & Rick Dalton vs. Hippies
In the climax of Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood, the aging actor Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his stunt double Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) take on the Manson Family in a brutal fight. Tarantino uses excessive violence in a one-sided brawl to satirize the Manson murders in a way that takes away the glory and mystique of Charles Manson and his followers, instead making fun of them.
This is the perfect climax to end the film, but it's not for the faint of heart. You'll appreciate this drawn-out battle if you like campy violence that is so ridiculous it's funny (nested in a legitimate social commentary).
2. Beatrix Kiddo vs. The Crazy 88s
In this iconic fight scene from Kill Bill Vol. 1, Beatrix Kiddo (Uma Thurman) battles a group of masked Yakuza henchmen known as the Crazy 88s. They work for the main antagonist, O-Ren Ishii. While Beatrix (also known as the bride) is a trained assassin, it's still unrealistic that she could take out an army of men armed with swords as she runs around doing acrobatics and catching axes with her hands.
One by one, she slays them in a gruesome duel, but not once does another fighter sneak up on her as she's busy battling with another henchman. Nonetheless, the scene is brilliantly choreographed and remains one of the film's most iconic and memorable scenes.
3. Bane vs. Batman
The climactic fight scene in The Dark Knight Rises features Bane (Tom Hardy) dominating Batman (Christian Bale) in a one-sided brawl. This scene takes place in an underground cavern beneath Gotham City. Bane, physically more robust, more skilled in combat, and whose stature towers over Batman, throws him around and beats him easily.
Batman has already sustained injuries from previous fights, so he is not in peak physical condition. During their confrontation, Bane utters an iconic monologue about how he was brought up in darkness and molded by it. In contrast, Batman has merely adopted it, which is why the shadows betray him.
Bane has the high ground here, severely injuring Batman and even breaking his back. This fight leaves him bedridden, and he is left in this cavern, where he takes several months to recover before he can make the death-defying climb to escape.
4. Tyler Durden vs. the Narrator
In the final scene of Fight Club, the Narrator (Edward Norton) fights against his alter ego, Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt). It is a one-sided fight because Tyler is a figment of the Narrator's imagination and cannot defeat him with physical force. As Durden beats the Narrator, tosses him around, and throws him down a flight of stairs, we can see from objective POVs, such as the security footage, that there is no Tyler Durden.
He is a figment of the Narrator's imagination, so he is engaged in a battle with himself. This scene represents how the more the Narrator tries to fight Durden, the more he gives into his delusions, which only causes this alternate identity to grow stronger.
5. Ivan Drago vs. Apollo Creed
In Rocky IV, Ivan Drago (Dolph Rundgren) faces off against Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) in an exhibition boxing match. The fight is one-sided because Drago has trained harder and is in better shape than Apollo, who has grown complacent and is not taking the fight seriously.
Drago, who is physically larger and stronger than Creed, has been using cutting-edge technology and scientific methods to improve his efficiency and effectiveness as a fighter. Drago is also fighting not only for his own ends but for the glory of the Soviet Union, giving him an extra level of focus and determination that Creed lacks.
6. Kevin McAllister vs. Criminals
In the Home Alone franchise, young Kevin McAllister (Macaulay Culkin) defends his home against a group of burglars. The one-sided nature of the fights adds to the hilarity of these films, as eight-year-old Kevin uses his wits and booby traps to outsmart the criminals, who fail to counter his elaborate traps. My favorite scene is from Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, where Kevin repeatedly hits criminals Harry and Marv with bricks he throws off a building, which they never manage to dodge.
7. Darth Vader vs. Luke Skywalker
In the iconic lightsaber battle in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back, Darth Vader (David Prowse/James Earl Jones) easily defeats Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) in a one-sided fight. Vader is a highly skilled Sith Lord, while Luke is still learning the ways of the Force, making the battle incredibly one-sided.
8. Hutch vs. the Bus Passengers in Nobody
In the movie Nobody, Hutch Mansell (Bob Odenkirk) takes on a group of rowdy bus passengers who harass a young woman. Hutch, who is a highly trained assassin, takes down each of the delinquent passengers who are no match for him because they are unskilled brawlers used to facing defenseless civilians. While he does take some blows, he remains largely unaffected by them, as if they merely slapped him. The men are armed with weapons such as a crowbar, a bat, and a knife, but Hutch manages to disarm them and incapacitate them using his skills in hand-to-hand combat
9. Beatrix Kiddo vs. Pai Mei
In Kill Bill Vol. 1, Beatrix Kiddo (Uma Thurman) faces off against her former master, Pai Mei (Gordon Liu). It is a one-sided fight because Pai Mei is a highly skilled martial artist who outmatches Beatrix in every way, but she manages to impress him with her determination and fighting spirit. Even though she is given the advantage of using sharp and dangerous weapons, Pai Mei expertly dodges them with ease.
At one point, he even takes hold of her arm, twists it into an excruciatingly painful position, and informs that it's his arm now. This scene exposes how helpless and vulnerable Beatrix is in this moment. She is no match for Pai Mei, even though she mistakenly believed herself to be a worthy opponent. It is at this moment Beatrix agrees to undergo the arduous and grueling training regimens that Pai Mei prescribes so she, too, can learn this power.
10. John Wick vs. Everyone
In John Wick, retired hitman John Wick (Keanu Reeves) takes on the entire criminal underworld after they kill his dog. Wick, who is a highly trained killer out on a relentless pursuit of revenge, plows through assassins with incredibly graphic violence and no remorse.
11. Neo vs. Agent Smith
In the iconic fight scene between Neo and Agent Smith in The Matrix, Neo is able to effortlessly dodge and counter all of Smith's attacks. This is because Neo has realized his full potential as the “One” and gained extraordinary abilities within the Matrix, whereas Agent Smith is a program bound by rules.
12. Rocky Balboa vs. Clubber Lang
In Rocky III, the climactic fight between Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and Clubber Lang (Mr. T) is one-sided in favor of Lang. Rocky is initially caught off guard by Lang's aggressive fighting style, and Lang is able to pummel Rocky with powerful punches, causing him to lose his focus and confidence.
Rocky is unable to recover from Lang's onslaught and ultimately loses the fight, leading to a period of soul-searching and training before the two fighters have a rematch. Lang is portrayed as a fierce and dominant opponent, making the fight a memorable and intense one-sided battle.
13. Achilles vs. Hector
In Troy, the fight between Achilles (Brad Pitt) and Hector (Eric Bana) is one-sided in favor of Achilles, who is portrayed as a nearly invincible warrior. Achilles is much faster and more skilled than Hector and ultimately kills him in a brutal and one-sided fight.
14. Hulk vs. Loki
The fight between the Hulk and Loki in The Avengers is completely one-sided in favor of the Hulk. Loki attempts to use his magic to control the Hulk, but the Hulk is too strong and ultimately smashes Loki around like a ragdoll. Loki at first boasts about his grandiose status as a god and how everyone else is beneath him. The Hulk then picks up his body like a limp doll and smashes it against the ground until Loki is motionless and utters that he is a “puny god.”
15. Indiana Jones vs. Giant Swordsmen
In Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones faces off against a giant swordsman in an iconic one-sided fight. The swordsman shows off his impressive sword skills, but Indy simply pulls out his gun and shoots him, ending the fight before it even begins. This has become a popular funny internet meme that implies someone is no match for their opponent or they're in over their heads.
This thread inspired this post.
This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.