A major death in cinema can either be the point in which a film totally loses its audience, or the moment in which it cements itself as truly unforgettable. Impact is everything with a good death, triggering that rush of emotions with the weight that nothing else in a movie could ever produce.
Sadly however, movie deaths can often be the most infuriatingly predictable things in the world to spot coming.
Stupid characters deciding to run up the stairs instead of out the front door in horror films, big bad criminal masterminds beginning a long monologue right at the point where killing the good guys would make the most sense, or a main hero giving the audience one final dramatic look before sacrificing themselves for the greater good are all some of the most obvious telltale signs that a death is about to go down, and audiences have grown used to seeing these on their screens over the years.
That isn't always the case of course, and there have been some truly shocking deaths over the course of history that have come out of nowhere and left audiences stunned. From killing off main characters barely at the midway point of the film, to offscreen developments that threw entire franchises up in there, here are ten unexpected movie deaths that came out of nowhere.
10. Dick Hallorann - The Shining
Stanley Kubrick's version of The Shining is infamous for being devoid of anything resembling hope or warmth, however his handling of Dick Hallorann still manages to stand out as particularly harsh. A kind-hearted and caring member of the Overlook Hotel's staff, it is Hallorann who tells little Danny Torrence about the ability to shine and telepathically communicate with certain people and the two characters instantly build a connection.
When things begin to go array for the Torrence family at the Overlook thanks to Jack's descent into insanity, Danny reaches out to Hallorann who proceeds to fly from Miami to Denver, rents a car at the airport so he can get a snowcat and drives the snowcat through a blizzard to get to the hotel and save the day. Built up throughout the film as the absolute good guy and hero in the making, he takes about ten steps into the Overlook Hotel before Jack appears out of nowhere and lodges a huge axe into his stomach.
Dick Hallorann actually makes it out of the Overlook Hotel absolutely fine in Stephen King's original novel, so the decision by Kubrick to shoehorn a sudden death scene into the mix out of nowhere would have been absolutely shocking to even the most hardcore of Shining fans going into the film.