Iconic Movie Scenes That Had To Be Paused Over And Over
What are movies but an artistic expression with the most fluid and resonating way of storytelling? There are movies we love to see over and over, be it a link to a warm summer memory or a cherished holiday eve, like that iconic scene in A Walk to Remember where Mandy Moore sang to her love, or foreign films where we had to pause because the lines hit us right in the sweet spot. Between our most beloved and relatable characters and pivotal developments or enthralling plots, there’s much that needs to be absorbed and mulled over. Whether it is for rib-tickling memes, blunders, and subliminal messages, or thought-provoking moments of self-actualization, here are some of the most paused movie scenes that fans couldn’t get enough of. We’re sure they’ll spark fond memories in all the readers!
The Wizard Of Oz
After more than eight decades, the classic tale of The Wizard of Oz remains close to everyone’s heart due to a variety of reasons. The story carries a lot of depth and substance while beautifully presenting itself in a lighthearted tone.
However, it’s no secret that most of the original fairytale stories had a sinister and dark origin, where things weren’t all rainbows and sunshine. Such is the case with this still frame, where although the producers describe it as a bird, this distant figure along the road is most probably a munchkin hanged to death.
Thanks to the terrifying genius of famed director Alfred Hitchcock, and an unforgettable performance by Tony Perkins, the deranged killer Norman Bates is no stranger to us all. This twisted horror/psychological thriller was a big part of the old-school chilling tales that people found quite captivating.
One of the most paused scenes from this movie is when Norman Bates gets arrested. It might just be for a small flicker of a second, but fans caught the moment where a skull appeared superimposed over his face, making his smile all the more sinister and cringe-inducing.
She’s The Man
There are some truly bold and jaw-dropping moments in movies that you just can’t get over. One of them was when Amanda Bynes lifted her shirt up after having pretended to be a boy for the better part of the movie.
Sure, the reason people paused may seem perverted, but it was indeed a pivotal scene in the movie that gave a sense of empowerment. After all, soccer is enjoyed best when you can just let your hair hang loose (amongst other things).
Sometimes you need to take a moment and absorb a scene, just to marvel at the absolute absurdity and hilarity of it. Same is the case with this golden scene in the movie Total Recall. It’s Arnold in his prime.
Playing with the viewer’s imaginations in the funniest ways, the movie explored the ‘what-ifs’ of life on Mars, where the prostitutes had a surprise unlike any other for Arnold Schwarzenegger. It is quite a popular scene and definitely a fan favorite.
The Lion King
The Lion King is a beloved movie that every ’90s kid grew up loving and cherishing. Whether it was dancing to the tunes of “Hakuna Matata” or grieving with Simba over the unfortunate stampede, there were precious moments that warmed our hearts.
Amidst all these emotional moments, there was one that had a hidden subliminal message, making it one of the most paused scenes of the movie. Apparently the word ‘sex’ had appeared in the formation of stars during one of the most moving scenes of the classic tale.
Basic Instinct was the whole package, wasn’t it now? Exploring the complex layers of sexuality and erotica, we’d be surprised if the movie didn’t make it to this list. After all, it features one of the most famous scenes of on-screen seduction in cinema.
Sharon Stone, being the true diva that she is, delivered a very audacious performance in a still from the movie better known as the famous leg crossing scene. Let’s just say it revealed much more than one can imagine to see.
Burn After Reading
This dark comedy takes a turn for the worst with an unexpected character death in the most twisted way possible. In one of the most famed scenes of the movie, we see Brad Pitt hiding within the closet as George Clooney’s character makes his way home.
Of course, this doesn’t turn out well for the Hollywood heartthrob. Clooney’s character is so shocked to see him hiding in his cupboard that he frantically shoots him in the head. It all happens so fast that you don’t even get the time to blink.
Cabin In The Woods
Cabin in the Woods was a brilliantly executed movie that played with our imagination in all the right ways. The device which sparked curiosity and interest were the different scenarios and monsters that the ill-fated group of friends could have stumbled upon.
One of the scenes where these monsters are mentioned on a white board is the most paused scene in the movie, and rightfully so. Everyone wanted to know the different possibilities and outcomes, especially after set design took the time to scribble them all in!
Let’s just take a moment to admire the wonderful masterpiece that is this movie. We are sure everyone has seen the movie at least once, so it’s safe to mention here that Brad Pitt (Tyler Durden) was the protagonist’s alter-ego without spoiling it for anyone. Fair?
However, his character appeared a full six times before his character was actually introduced and his actual role started in the plot. These are just some brilliant details that might have gone unnoticed if not for the devoted fans of the movie.
There are many spine chilling scenes in the sci-fi movie Annihilation. Along with brilliant performances and scenes that demanded our undivided attention, there was one that certainly stood out. Just looking at it is giving us nightmares all over again.
It’s that one scene where the infamous ‘bear’ hybrid makes an appearance, mimicking the voice of one of the ladies in the group, and it has to be the most disturbing scene from the movie. Everyone held their breath as the scene progressed, and it’s definitely one of the most pause-worthy moments.
Nerds, are you listening? Yes? Then you will be delighted to know that the playful Pac-Man had a surprising little cameo in the ’80s movie Tron. Providing the perfect punch of nostalgia, the film revives those memories of arcades and gaming areas.
This can be seen in one of the movie scenes, where the character Ed Dillinger is seen standing in front of the game play of Pac-Man. The beloved circular character can be clearly spotted, joyously chomping away at the dots.
Raiders Of The Lost Ark
Paul Freeman is a commendable actor who has delivered in some of the best action movies of his times. His devotion to his work and the sheer talent he possesses as an actor can be seen in this still, where a fly literally crawls on his face and into his mouth, and he still doesn’t break character!
Indiana Jones has given us a number of fond memories, but this has to be on the top of our list. He inspired many people to pursue lives filled with travel and adventure. We’re huge fans! Would you have been able not to flinch?
After what we’ve learned, we are not quite sure if it can really be called a children’s movie anymore. There is an oft-paused notorious scene in the animated movie The Rescuers, well-loved by kids in the 1970s, and featuring the voice talents of such legends as Bob Newhart, Eva Gabor, and Geraldine Page.
When paused during one of the fast-paced and quickly moving stills in the movie, a naked woman can be clearly spotted in one of the windows. It’s not even an animated character, but clearly a human female, which is quite disturbing for a kid’s movie!
Boogie Nights is a memorable masterpiece that still holds a special place in the hearts of the fans after all these years. Mark Wahlberg beautifully delivered the role of a kid who turned into a bona fide 1970s porn star.
One of the iconic scenes in the movie – and the most paused one for that matter – is when he’s seen flaunting the goods for which his character is renowned. Spoiler, it’s a prosthetic, that’s for sure, but we certainly understand how the scene demanded a better look from fans.
The Wolf Of Wall Street
The Wolf of Wall Street is one long chaotic ride through the highest of highs and the lowest of lows, and amidst all the dizzying imagery, along comes some seduction. This has to be one of the most captivating scenes in a movie, where Margot Robbie shows an alluring performance while trying to seduce Leonardo DiCaprio.
We wish it was one of those slow-motion scenes, but what it lacks in speed, we make up by pausing and watching it over again and again. Even if you didn’t see the movie (how could you not?!), you must have definitely seen this still as it is quite viral.
More than anything else, Pulp Fiction has given us the gift of style. It has provided plenty of material and dance moves for a successful costume party, as well as some of the most memorable moments in film from the last thirty years. It was impossible that this fan favorite didn’t make it into the list.
In this particular scene, the fans noticed that the bullet holes in the walls behind the beloved characters of Jules and Vincent had actually appeared in the movie before the shots were fired! Clearly someone was in quite a haste to wrap up.
Three Men And A Baby
Three Men and a Baby is a classic comedy from 1987. One of the most popular shots of this movie is the appearance of a 9-year-old boy in the background of a scene. Fan theories instantly took over, trying to decipher the meaning of this appearance, suggesting that it is a ghost boy who committed suicide in the house.
However, this is not a phantasm caught by chance on camera. Instead, you might be surprised to know that the film was directed by Star Trek legend Leonard Nimoy, who placed a cardboard cutout of Ted Danson in the scene for some strange reason.
Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace
This might not be one of your favorite movies if you are a devoted fan of the Star Wars franchise. Even so, the strange beauty and familiarity of this scene in the Galactic Senate on the planet of Coruscant can’t be denied.
It sparked the interest of many, and it was paused over again and again to get another glimpse of a certain someone we all know too well. That’s right, here you can see E.T.’s family surprised us with a delightful little cameo in one of the scenes.
One of the most sought-after genres in horror classics is gory fiction. From bursting heads to alien babies carving their way out of exploding intestines, it was the good stuff that provided us with sleepless nights, and of course, plenty of mind-benders to think about.
One of the classics of the 1980s, David Cronenberg’s Scanners, had one such scene that occurred so quickly, the fans had to pause it and watch in slow motion to grasp the full impact of it, making it a truly unforgettable moment.
The Seven Year Itch
Even if you haven’t seen this film, you’ve seen this moment. After all, this has to be one of the most iconic images of Monroe. It marks the commencement of a new era set by her style and sex appeal for all the women of her time.
In this classic scene of the movie, she is seen posing playfully above a subway grate while holding her dress down. Even if you haven’t seen the movie, every single person is certainly familiarized with this still from the movie in her most iconic pose of all time.
The timeless beauty of this classic movie and the grand spectacle of its central tragedy will always have a special place in our hearts. The epic romance between Rose and Jack took our breath away in the most awe-inspiring ways.
One of the most paused scenes of the movie is when Rose delivered these famous lines to Jack ‘draw me like one of your French girls’. Although it is quite enticing with sexual undertones, the scene simply reflected the bond that they shared, and the depth and purity of their feelings for each other.
Aladdin is a classic Disney movie, with the charming Genie executed brilliantly by the late great improviser Robin Williams, and the handsome young street urchin Aladdin sweeping the ladies of Agrabah off their feet. It began the trend of animated major films utilizing their celebrity voices as a selling point.
In one of the playful interactions between the duos when Aladdin is asking Genie to make him a prince, we can see Genie pulling out a red crab while reading a recipe book. This particular crab happens to be the beloved sidekick Sebastian from The Little Mermaid, a scene fans paused many times to make sure it was indeed the same character.
This comic book favorite waited a decent amount of time to see himself represented on the big screen. The year 2002 marked the release of the very first Spider-Man movie in the franchise, imbued with thrilling action sequences and that feisty romance with Mary-Jane.
The most paused scene of the movie is the iconic kiss between the two as Spider-Man dangles upside down. It is quite unique in its execution and really sets the tone for the relationship between the two lovebirds. It is paused ever so often, just to grasp the beauty of the frame.
When we talk about movies with such rich histories, a small cameo here and there is quite common. It is a fun point of trivia for the movie fans to spot these cameos, leading to some of the most paused scenes of this dinosaur movie sequel.
Here’s one with Jimmy Buffett himself, running frantically in the theme park as flying pterosaurs threaten everyone with their pointy talons. Not only is he in the film, but he’s self-referential: it’s funny how he is holding two margaritas in his hands.
The Conjuring contains within it plenty moments and plot points that are the stuff right out of your nightmares. The fact that the story is based on true events of a haunted home in New England further adds to its mystical allure and scare factor. While in most paranormal movies we barely get to see the actual demon, The Conjuring made sure we get a good hard look.
In one of the scenes that are sure to make everyone jump out of their seats, we see the witch ghost Bathsheba leaping off the wardrobe. Once you are over the initial shock of the moment, you will definitely pause the scene to get a better look. We decided to leave that scene out since it gives us the heeby-jeebies!
Evil Dead II
As if the films of the Evil Dead series weren’t scary enough in and of themselves, this paused scene shows Freddy Krueger’s glove hanging in the fruit cellar. That’s right, it’s the famous monster from The Nightmare on Elm Street, with those chilling sinister gloves.
Evil Dead has to be one of the scariest movies of its time, and the eagle-eyed horror fans found this additional eerie factor to make it even more menacing. However, we are sure Ash Williams is well-equipped for it all.
The bone-chilling classic by Stephen King has numerous pause-worthy moments throughout the movie, masterfully directed by Stanley Kubrick. From the horrific elevator gushing blood to the sinister appearance of Jack Torrance in the old picture, there are so many noteworthy moments.
The most curious and controversial one, however, is this one with a weird sadistic dog man in the middle of what appears to be an intimate act, giving rise to many debates and conspiracy theories. The scene was so out of context and utterly random and fast that it had to be paused to somehow make sense of it all.
Fast & Furious 7
There are many inspirational characters in the Fast & Furious universe, but Han is easily one of the most beloved of them all. His death came as quite a big shock for the fans in the sixth installment of the movies.
But if you look closely while watching Furious 7, there’s a moment that comes by so quick that you’ll miss it if you blink. It shows the full name of Han as Han Seoul-Oh, sounding very much like the Star Wars character Han Solo.
Behind every screen, there is a real live human being, and Netflix is here to remind us of that truth. Netflix’s Cam is a very unsettling movie set on an intriguing premise about the cruel twists and turns of the X-rated webcam industry and identity theft.
The protagonist, Alice, is shown to be very decisive and head strong, making this scene all the more powerful and thought-provoking. In attempts to get her identity back, she breaks her own nose. Thanks to the amazing prosthetics and makeup job in the scene, it looks strikingly real.
Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope
Star Wars is a timeless classic with an incomparably huge and devoted fan base. Funnily enough, there are some moments that were not originally a part of the script, and are more like blunders but still left on in the movie for laughs, and for eagle-eyed fans to notice and point out.
One of these is when a stormtrooper accidentally hits his head against a low-hanging ceiling as he exits Han Solo’s spaceship. The actors actually stated that their helmets would often make them hit their head on the sets, and that’s what happened here too.
There’s Something About Mary
In the ’90s, when comedy movies were usually rated PG-13, There’s Something About Mary delivered sidesplitting and particularly inappropriate humor that can’t be forgotten anytime soon. And of all the moments in the film, we know exactly which one you remember.
While there are many comical scenes in the movie, this particular ‘hair-gel’ scene has to be the most paused one just for the sheer hilarity and awkwardness of it all. We’d also like to give an honorary mention to the hysterically absurd zipper scene of Ben Stiller. Ouch!
The famous birthday party clip in the Mel Gibson-led sci-fi movie Signs makes for one of the most famous paused scenes ever. This is because of the shocking freak-out delivered to the audience in the most unexpected time, even if it’s just for a second.
The movie is more about the buildup and plot rather than showing the actual aliens influencing the film’s events, which is why this scene gets so much attention. It appears out of the blue and makes you jump out of your seats.
Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind
This haunting classic is one of the favorites of thinkers, dreams, and hipsters the world over. The poetic scene between Joel and Clementine as they lay down on the frozen lake to gaze at the stars is a beautiful depiction of romance and companionship.
It is so stunningly shot that you can’t help but pause to take in all the profound exquisiteness of it and ponder over its depth. The crack propagating as they stay fixated on the night sky signifies the fragility of their relationship and the turmoil that soon follows.
Life Of Pi
Everybody loves a good survival story to fill them up with hope and optimism. Based on the wildly successful Yann Martel novel, Life of Pi takes this theme to the next level with relentless courage and faith in the face of adversity.
Shot gorgeously to capture all the mesmerizing, bewildering beauty of the Pacific Ocean, the movie delivers some truly noteworthy scenes that have to be paused and taken in with small breaks, otherwise you wouldn’t be doing justice to this remarkable masterpiece of a story.
With the advancement of technology and all the stunning VFX we have in our movies now, it’s hard to imagine the special effects of The Matrix making the impact that they did back when it was released. At the time, we had seen nothing like it.
The fans held their breath at every slow-motion scene and hit pause many times to make sense of what was going on in the shots. One of the iconic moments was this artistic scene of dodging bullets, which has often been imitated ever since.
Man Of Steel
Superhero movies in the DC universe are bound to overlap from time to time, but it’s rare that they’re as subtle as this. Long before Batman v Superman came out, we had the film Man of Steel with chisel-jawed Henry Cavell at the helm.
His portrayal of the beloved superhero was not very well received at first, but this scene got all the attention the fans had to give. In the fighting scene, we can see Superman leaping past a satellite, which happens to read Wayne Enterprises – aka Bruce Wayne, or Batman!
Who Framed Roger Rabbit
Jessica Rabbit has to be the most sexualized animated character ever. She left many men confused about their feelings for a cartoon. In one of the scenes in this movie, she falls down and apparently is noticed to be commando.
It is quite interesting to notice here that the cartoon character was drawn, so if anything like that is true, it was intentional. Her delicate yet enticing dance moves and flirtatious ways compel one to pause and admire her beauty.
They changed American teen comedies forever, and we’re glad for it. We are sure that the American Pie movie series has many noteworthy ‘pause scenes’ gathered to its account. This one, however, is paused due to the sheer hilarity of it.
Main character Jim Levenstein has a series of embarrassing moments to his name throughout the movie – and by extension, the series itself. But this one just makes you burst out laughing, as he is seen in his kitchen without his pants on, desperately trying to cover himself with a pan.
A friendly face is seen popping up on our screens in the Deadpool sequel. It grasped everyone’s attention in the cinema so that as soon as they could get the movie at home, they paused several times to make sure that the infamous ‘The Vanisher’ was actually a cameo by Brad Pitt.
This one is a paused movie moment we’re fairly certain you hadn’t heard of. The character had a mysterious allure throughout the movie, but it was shown to be Brad Pitt in an artistically executed scene for only a split second.
Ready Player One
Ready Player One is a special movie, and a treat for all the ’80s kids who were into gaming and arcades. It has a plethora of Easter eggs from the good old days. They are so abundant that you literally have to pause the movie frame by frame to get them all.
One of these with the biggest quantity of throwbacks from the past is the finale, the last stand scene. All the avatars used for this sequence are ripped form pop culture such as Batman characters, Street Fighter characters, the Turtles, and many more.
The Mummy’s reboot might not have been as thrilling and exciting as the original instalments, though it still managed to capture the interest of devoted fans by using some of the same props that they did in the original movies.
One of these is the ‘Book of the Dead’ or the ‘Book of Amun Ra’, showcasing the same Egyptian iconography and the symbol of a beetle that we are all too familiar with from the Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz version of The Mummy. This, combined with Tom Cruise’s face, offered some consolation to wounded fans.
Godzilla: King Of The Monsters
What is it about a giant, spiny Japanese nuclear radiation lizard that keeps us so spellbound? With some truly impressive action sequences, astounding visuals, majestic beasts, and breathtaking landscapes, you would imagine the most paused scene of the movie to be one of the classic Toho monsters themselves.
But surprisingly, the end credits are what got the attention of the fans the most. This was due to the fact that they made a further attempt to bring the characters to life by choosing to give them their due credit in the end roll!
Finding Dory was a lighthearted and feel-good sequel to the famous Pixar classic Finding Nemo movie. The characters are well-loved and the story follows the strange and wonderful adventures of Dory as she tries to find her long lost family.
In one of the scenes where she is trying to escape captivity, we can see the appearance of a villain from the first movie. Okay, it’s a child, not a villain, but you get the gist. It’s Darla, the psychopathic girl with the braces, if you look closely in the back.
Following the engrossing tale of Freddie Mercury, we see a lot of great moments in the movie Bohemian Rhapsody. There are many reasons why you should watch this movie, but one of them is this quick cameo by Adam Lambert, a famous vocalist.
He appears for just a quick second so that it’s almost impossible to be certain of it without pausing the frame. It is quite a delightful surprise and the fans absolutely loved it. It’s full circle, as Adam Lambert has stepped in as the lead singer in Freddie’s band Queen.
Zootopia tells a tale of animals living their lives like a human. A lot of things are adjusted and modified to fit into this unique universe. Although most of them are too obvious and noticeable, there are a few artistic details that are easy to miss if you don’t pause and appreciate it.
One of them is this ingenious song list in the iPod, where the name of the musicians are changed to fit more closely within an animal theme. Honestly, we’re just living for all these silly puns, and would love to hear their first singles.
The Exorcist is one of the most terrifying movies in the history of the horror genre. There are so many disturbing scenes to keep one up at night, but the one that stood out was when the demon Pazuzu actually appeared for a mere second.
It is one of the most infamous scenes in the movie, and for your own good and sanity, we hope you’d stay away from that pause button when re-watching this horror classic. The camera does not linger on the demon, but splices his face in with everyday scenes, with dizzying speed. Literally, blink and you’ll miss it.
The Dark Knight
The Joker’s character is quite famous in the Batman franchise, if not legendary in his own right. Although there have been many memorable portrayals over the decades, the Oscar-winning performance by the late Heath Ledger will forever stay close to our hearts.
It certainly got the big and emotional entrance it deserved with the scene that left us feeling somewhat scared and spooked out. This particular scene where he pulls off his mask to show that he is the real Joker with those dark, eerie eyes and peculiar scars really stole the show.
Coco is a feel-good family movie that left us with full hearts and tears in our eyes. As Disney always promises to leave Easter eggs in its movies for fans to find and be surprised by, Coco was no exception.
In one of the most psychedelic scenes of the movie in the land of the dead, we can see a poster in the background featuring the Incredibles family – in the skull version of their characters of course. But this moment where the boy spent time with grandma is also another special scene.
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
E.T. is a heartwarming tale of an unlikely friendship between a little boy and his marooned alien friend trying to make sense of the planet he’s on. It instantly became a fan favorite as a comforting family tale that everyone loved and enjoyed.
One of the most famous scenes of the movie is when Elliott and E.T. escape via a bicycle that’s been lifted in the air through E.T.’s telekinetic abilities. With a breathtaking skyscape of a glowing moon, this still became the most iconic part of the movie.
Could it possibly be any more bombastic than it already was? We think not. Endgame is one of the most anticipated and hyped movies of the decade. All the beloved Marvel heroes team up together to bring Thanos down to his knees.
What fans really loved though, was this surprising cameo of Howard the Duck, seen fighting valorously with a blaster in hand. The lovable yet hot-headed duck has a brief appearance in the Guardians of the Galaxy, and is a famous character from the Marvel comics.