Betrayals in real life are quite common but in movies, it’s a big deal. A perfectly executed betrayal transpires after the audience has connected with a particular character or chemistry between the characters and then, that character ends up betraying the others. Sometimes, the twists can be predicted but an effective betrayal manages to catch the audience off guard.
Betrayals are quite common in slasher/thriller movies where no character can be trusted until the very end. However, other genres are prone to such twists as well. So, without further ado, here are the 15 most outrageous movie betrayals of all time:
15. The Iron Monger (Iron Man)
What better way to kick off the list than discussing about the movie that helped launch one of the most successful movie franchises of all time (Marvel Cinematic Universe). The first installment in both the Iron Man and MCU franchises revolved around the evolution of Tony Stark as the superhero Iron Man.
After Tony’s father, Howard had been killed off in an accident, his company’s (Stark Industries) control was given to his business partner, Obadiah Stane. However, Tony Stark took over the company’s control soon after, forcing Stane to step down. The feeling of jealousy caused Stane to turn on Tony. Although the betrayal was predicted, the events that transpired leading to the reveal of the twist were highly captivating and executed brilliantly.
14. Damn Androids (Alien)
Nothing is more heartbreaking than a likable character turning to the dark side. Such was the case with Alien. Ash, the android, turns out to be a vicious killing machine in addition to being smart enough to carry out the company’s orders.
His treacherous actions result in the demise of almost everyone abroad the Nostromo. Although it can be argued that he was just an Android doing what he was programmed to do, the way he carries out his plans is nothing less than what a ruthless killer would do.
13. Major Grant’s Betrayal (Die Hard 2)
High Octane Action flicks like Die Hard and its sequels do not need a deep plot to thrive. A straightforward plot with captivating action sequences and snarky one-liners are enough for viewers to enjoy the film.
However, the second installment in the Die Hard Franchise was packed with a twist that very few people saw coming. After the Protagonist John McClane’s wife is confirmed to be one of the passengers on the plane with low fuel circling around the airport, unable to land due to the presence of German terrorists in the airport, he enlists the help of Major Grant and his crew. The duo establishes a friendly bond but it is then revealed that Grant was working with the terrorists all along.
12. Scar’s Betrayal (The Lion King)
Lion King is one of those rare movies that can still hit you in the feels, no matter how many times you watch it. The story was so deep that it can give tough competition to any well-crafted movie of today.
The betrayal we are discussing here is obviously the one where Scar tries to get his brother Mufasa and his son Simba killed in a stampede. Scar’s motivation behind the betrayal was his realization that he could never become a king due to Simba being next in line after Mufasa. After Mufasa’s death, Scar coaxes Simba into disappearing so he can gain power and control of the jungle.
11. The Lovable Antagonist (Total Recall)
Having a comedic sidekick can make any movie much more interesting than it already is. Same was the case with Total Recall where the character of Arnold Schwarzenegger befriends a loudmouth and lively Benny (who has 5 kids, in case you didn’t know already) upon reaching Mars.
To everyone’s surprise, it is revealed that Benny was actually associated with the antagonist. He even proceeds to murder Arnold’s character at one point but fails and get slaughtered instead.
10. Sullivan’s Redemption (Road to Perdition)
This 2002 crime flick has got to be one of the most underrated films of the last decade. From story and performances to cinematography and other details, everything is flawless.
The story revolves around the character of Michael Sullivan Sr. who is forced to turn against his boss (who had raised him and treated him just like or even better than his actual son) and go after his son, Connor who had murdered one of Sullivan’s children and his wife.
The second and third acts of the movie are highly engaging with Sullivan pursuing revenge on Connor and at the same time, protecting his son from his Boss John Rooney and the people he had hired to kill Sullivan and his son to save Connor.
9. Betraying Indiana Jones (Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade)
In the third Indiana Jones flick, the protagonist encounters Dr. Elsa Schneider, an Austrian Archeologist. It doesn’t take long for the two to develop feelings for each other but as soon as the audience is led to believe that the flick is going to be an Adventure Romance, things take a turn for the worst.
It is revealed that Elsa was actually working with the Nazis as an agent. To further inflict damage, it is also revealed that she was cheating on Jones with his father (yikes!). This betrayal hands the Nazis key information required to achieve their ultimate goal.
8. Anakin Skywalker’s turn to the Dark Side (Revenge of the Sith)
If you watched the Star Wars series in chronological order, this turn might have shocked you the most! Anakin Skywalker gets recruited in his childhood by Jedi master Qui-Gon Jinn and his apprentice Obi-Wan Kenobi for Jedi training. It was believed that Skywalker would grow up to become a Jedi and bring balance to the Force.
However, the losses that he had to endure over the course of the first 3 films caused Anakin to become the very thing he has sworn to fight against. He couldn’t save his mother from getting murdered. He then starts having visions of his pregnant wife Padme dying.
The Sith Lord is able to convince him that he could save his family by joining the dark side and after considering the offer, Anakin ends up becoming a Sith and Darth Vader eventually. However, he still couldn’t save Padme and becomes the primary cause of her death.