8. Anakin Burns Up On Mustafar Shore
Film: Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
The Moment: Anakin and Obi-Wan have taken their fight on Mustafar into the river of lava, balancing on floating pieces of metal for balance. Obi-Wan leaps onto the shore of the river, pleading with Anakin not to try and follow him — but that’s what happens. While in the air over Obi-Wan, Anakin has his good arm cut off as well as both of his legs by Obi-Wan. He tumbles down the shore towards the lava where he slowly bursts into flames as the heat of the lava roasts Anakin alive.
Why It’s Memorable: There is nothing more brutal in a Star Wars movie than this moment. This is why Revenge of the Sith was PG-13, as it’s disgusting in all the cinematic ways George Lucas was always afraid to approach out of fear that it wouldn’t be kid friendly. But we needed to see how Darth Vader became the scarred mess he was when we saw him without his mask in the original trilogy, and boy did we see that.
It’s a soul crushing moment, as you have on the one hand Anakin burning to a crisp, pleading for Obi-Wan to save him while his former master tearfully shames him one last time for betraying him and the goodness in both of their hearts. It’s heartbreaking and is the definitive death of the Anakin we watched grow in the prequel films. Darth Vader truly was born out of fire and hate.
Next: 7. Boba Fett Goes Out Like A Punk