The 66.6 Most Metal Movie Scenes of All Time: #14 through #10
On June 9th, independent heavy metal book publisher Bazillion Points will release Heavy Metal Movies, the ultimate guidebook to the complete molten musical cinema experience that features lavish illustrations and more than 666 of the most metallic movie moments of all time.
To celebrate, we’ve partnered with the book’s author, Mike “McBeardo” McPadden, to count down the 66.6 most metal movie scenes of all time right here on MetalSucks! Every other day through the book’s release on June 9th we’ll be revealing Mike’s picks along with brief write-ups penned by the author himself.
We’re approaching the final stretch: count down with us today as we cover #14 through #10.
14. Apocalypse Now (1979)
• Helicopters attack to Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries.”
With all due respect (?) to the Crusades, the trench horrors of World War I, the atrocities of World War II, and the Battle of Helm’s Deep, the American-led 1960s conflict in Vietnam may constitute the most heavy metal of all warfare. In cinematic terms, screenwriter John Milius (Conan the Barbarian) and director Francis Ford Coppola (The Godfather) took that notion to the skies, launching an operatic invasion of helicopters that bombard a beach for surfing purposes while they blare Teutonic composer Richard Wagner’s symphonic, proto-metal hell-storm “Ride of the Valkyries.” Norse mythology meets explosive savage conquest and, at the end, Lt. Col. Bill Kilgore proclaims, “I love the smell of napalm in the morning!”
13. Gremlins 2 (1990)
• Gremlin undergoes horrific mutation to “Angel of Death” by Slayer
The original Gremlins so traumatized unsuspecting kiddie audiences that it necessitated the creation of the PG-13 rating. For the sequel, director Joe Dante went even more over-the-top, often by keeping the extremes to which he was pushing the ostensible family-friendly material under the table. Aside from intimations of Mogwai-human sex and giant-pod-carrying Christopher Lee as Dr. Catheter, one of Gremlins 2‘s weirdest sequences takes place when a Gremlin known as “Mohawk” drinks a formula that painfully metamorphosizes him into a half-Gremlin/half-Spider — all to a score of “Angel of Death,” Slayer’s suspiciously nonjudgmental ode to Third Reich medical monster Josef Mengele. The formula, of course, was created by Dr. Catheter and his team, who we previously saw experimenting on live animals. It would seem that Dante is equating the practices of modern science with the practices of mass murderers. There’s no telling how Executive Producer Steven Spielberg took Dante’s sly commentary, but we never got a Gremlins 3, did we?
12. Easy Rider (1969)
• Steppenwolf sonically introduce the concept of “heavy metal thunder.”
At once flamboyant and rough-necked, hardscrabble and hippified, bikers-cum-seekers Wyatt (Peter Fonda) and Billy (Dennis Hopper) peel out on the open road in pursuit of… like… “America, maaan” while L.A. meth-blues psych-rockers Steppenwolf erupt an indelible new term into rock’s vocabulary and consciousness. “I like smoke and lightning,” frontman John Kay wails, “HEAVY METAL THUNDER!”
11. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective (1994)
• Cannibal Corpse make their kiddie movie debut, fronted by Jim Carrey.
Ace Ventura: Pet Detective not only launched Jim Carrey from TV funnyman to international comedy movie superstar, it enabled him to come out loud and proud, a death metal devotee in general, and as a super-booster of Buffalo, New York bruisers Cannibal Corpse in particular. For a scene where the Pet Detective jumps onstage at a rock club and takes over lead vocals for the performing band, Carrey used his leading man muscle to cast Cannibal Corpse as his momentary co-stars. And that’s how a generation of juvenile Ace Ventura addicts grew up moshing along to “Hammer Smashed Face.”
10. Iron Maiden: Flight 666 (2008)
• Brazilian fan Bruno Ismael Zalanduskas catches a drumstick from Nicko McBrain and, for thirty-eight profoundly moving seconds, openly weeps.
Known now as “The Crying Man,” Maiden superfan Zalanduskas’s outpouring of emotion embodies and expresses the profound attachment metal devotees feel for the music — and musicians — that provide meaning, purpose, camaraderie, and all-around kick-ass richness to what is so often the daunting and downbeat experience of existence. For this reason, metal has always been especially proven potent and popular in poverty-afflicted and war-torn areas, thereby making every tear Bruno sheds a cry of resistance and liberation.
Catch up on the rest of the countdown here: