I've seen The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King hundreds of times during my short spell on this planet, I know the film well. But I can't handle its climax. Still to this day, I just can't.
You know the bit where Merry, Pippin and Sam are saying their tearful goodbyes to Gandalf, Bilbo, Frodo and the remaining Elves, as they prepare to venture to the Undying Lands?
I feel a tingling in my heartstrings and then my face becomes damp with tears of "NO FRODO, YOU CAN'T LEAVE SAM!" Every, friggin', time. And I'm a grown ass man!
But there have been an abundance of emotional lines in movies that aim to force saltwater out of the eyes of unsuspecting movie goers. And I have collated 11 of the most eye-wateringly melancholic happenings, ranging from Harry Potter to My Girl.
Let's dive straight into the deep end of the Lake of Tears...
11 Heartbreaking Moments In Cinema
1. The Green Mile
Line - John Coffey: "He killed them with their love. That's how it is every day, all over the world."
This movie has so many heartbreaking lines with the most poignant saved for the last words of the gentle giant, John Coffey. With his light extinguished, a little slither more of love leaves our apathetic Earth.
2. The Lion King
Line - Simba: "Dad? Dad, come on. You gotta get up. We gotta go home."
For many of us, this was our first experience with cinematic death, or death in general. And our first lesson that good doesn't always triumph over evil. I think that fact is possibly sadder!
3. My Girl
Line - Vada Sultenfuss: "He can't see without his glasses!"
There's nothing worse than seeing a child having to come to terms with the loss of a dear one, and this beautiful film doesn't make it any easier to deal with. I didn't understand it the first time I saw this film, but now my eyes leak every time thanks to this line. Something as small as glasses, the quotidian. Brilliant writing.
4. American Beauty
Line - Lester Burnham: "I guess I could be pretty pissed off about what happened to me, but it's hard to stay mad when there's so much beauty in the world."
A man who had just woken up to life and decided to take it by the horns, shake it up and finally live, is murdered in cold blood in his kitchen after an epiphany - the world is actually beautiful. This film is incredible and the ending monologue sets me off upon every watch, because its true. But at least he realized.
5. The Dark Knight Rises
Line - Alfred Pennyworth: "I'm so sorry, I've failed you. You trusted me and I failed you."
Alfred has watched Bruce Wayne grow up angry and broken. He disappears for years and then returns with talk of becoming a superhero. What would you do, break his spirit or try to mould him into a man his father would be proud of? This scene is heartbreaking because Alfred saw it coming all along and he was powerless to fix it.
6. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan
Line - Spock: "I have been and always shall be... your friend."
Immeasurably logical or just plain old stubborn, Spock was always an amazing moral compass to aid the creation of plans. So when he takes it into his hands to save the Enterprise and her crew, you know it makes sense - 'cause Spock did it - but what will Jim and Bones do now?
7. The Land Before Time
Line - Littlefoot's Mother: "I'll always be with you... even if you can't see me."
This animated feature is one of the most beautiful I've seen, and the memories of watching it as a kid still linger with me today. The death of Littlefoot's mother was terrible, but, unfortunately, the hero's journey comes with great loss.
8. E.T. The Extra Terrestrial
Line - E.T.: "I'll... be.... right... here."
Oh man, rewatching this nearly set me off. E.T. finally gets in contact with his species and delivers this knockout line to a heartbroken Elliot and millions of kids around the globe. He was right though, he does still exist... in here *points to heart*.
9. The Iron Giant
Line - Giant: "You... stay, I... go. No following."
That was the first time Vin Diesel ever made me cry. The Iron Giant is such a wonderful being, childlike and innocent; he just wanted to be like Superman, a hero. I think he redeemed himself pretty well, don't you?
10. Schindler's List
Line - Schindler: "I could've gotten one more person, but I didn't. I didn't."
The sheer weight of the realization of the Nazi regime's beyond disgraceful and terrible actions, and his greed, comes crashing down on Schindler in this heartbreakingly powerful line. This is a true feat of moviemaking.
11. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part One
Line - Dobby: "Such a beautiful place... to be with friends. Dobby is happy to be with his friend... Harry Potter."
Out of all the deaths that occurred throughout the Harry Potter franchise, Dobby's passing was the one that hit me the most. So loyal, caring and innocent, right to the end. A free elf surrounded by his friends. Beautiful.
So, now that the Kleenexes have caught all of the tears, and we've calmed down a little, I'm gonna pass the mic to you guys and ask...
What are your most emotional lines from movies?
Because it's too difficult to catalog all of them myself with shaky, grief ridden hands. This article was emotional, man!
Feel free to share in the comments!
Plus, good work on making it this far.
Which of the eleven did you find the most moving?
(Source: Movieclips via YouTube)